September 23, 2007
The new birth is a wondrous, mysterious thing. Who can explain “Christ in you”? Who can define what it means to be “partakers of the divine nature”? I repeat: the new birth is a wondrous mystery of grace. — But anyone who calls this blessed work of God the Holy Spirit mysticism is a blind, ignorant heretic.
· Our featured sermon on FreeGraceRadio today is, “He Opened to Us the Scriptures” (Luke 24:13-35).
· Bro. Larry Criss is preaching today for Fairmont Grace Church in Sylacauga, AL, where Bro. Tommy Robbins is pastor.
· We will have our Quarterly Fellowship next Sunday.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Larry Brown-24th Noah Duff-26th
NURSERY DUTY THIS WEEK
Today: Shante’ Birchum (AM) Emily Rice (PM) Tuesday: Nancy Criss
Who Can Describe the Joyful Scene? — Don Fortner
(Tune: #98 — I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day — LM)
1. Who can describe the joyful scene,
When ransomed souls are born again,
When a poor prodigal is turned,
Who has his Father’s love so spurned?
2. With joy the Father runs to kiss
The object of His love and grace!
The Son with satisfaction sees
His soul’s travail and agonies!
3. The Holy Spirit, joyful, too, beholds
The soul by grace renewed!
God’s saints below and those above,
Sing for the conquest of God’s love!
Christ Makes All Things New
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
In regeneration, the new birth, the Lord Jesus Christ makes chosen, redeemed sinners new creatures. Titus 3:5 speaks of this great work of grace as both “the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Ghost.” That which is produced in regeneration is called a “new creature,” “the new man,” “Christ in you,” and “the divine nature.” Those who are born again are said to be newborn babes (2 Corinthians 5:17; Ephesians 4:24; 1 Peter 2:2; Colossians 1:27; 2 Peter 1:4).
That new creature in Christ is given a new heart and a new spirit and a new understanding to know and understand things, never known nor understood before. The regenerate soul has a new heart that knows God, not merely as the God of nature and providence, but as “the God of all grace.” The believer knows God in Christ, the God-man Mediator. He is made to know the love of God in Christ, the covenant of grace, and the blessings of it, which were made and given to him in Christ before the world was created.
Our Lord Jesus tells us that this knowledge of God in Christ is eternal life (John 17:3). Those who have eternal life, those who are made new creatures in Christ by the new birth know Christ and the fulness of God’s grace in him. They know and enjoy the pardon of sin through his blood, justification by his righteousness, atonement by his sacrifice, and acceptance with God in him. They know and enjoy complete salvation in and by Christ.
In this new heart are new desires after heavenly things. The regenerate soul has new affections set upon things above, new delights in those heavenly things, and new joys arising from them (Ezekiel 36:26 1 John 5:20 1 Corinthians 2:9). In this new man are new eyes with which to see the kingdom of God. The natural, unregenerate soul has no eyes to see divine and spiritual things; but every heaven born soul does.
They have seeing eyes, made by the Lord (Deuteronomy 29:4; Proverbs 20:12). They see their lost state and condition by nature, the exceeding sinfulness of sin and their utter inability to make atonement by anything they can do. We see the insufficiency of our righteousness, our impotence to every good work, and our utter inability to change our condition. Regenerate souls are made to see their need of the blood, righteousness, and sacrifice of Christ, and of salvation by him.
They have the eye of faith, by which they behold the glories of Christ’s Person, the fulness of his grace, the excellence of his righteousness, the virtue of his blood and sacrifice, and the suitableness and completeness of his salvation.
Moreover, in the new man are new ears to hear the good Shepherd’s voice. They have them from the Lord, and blessed are they (Revelation 2:11; Deuteronomy 29:4; Proverbs 20:12; Matthew 13:16, 17). They hear the Word in a manner they never heard before; they hear with understanding and receive the love of it. Now we are able to distinguish the voice of Christ from the voice of a stranger. We know the joyful sound, and rejoice to hear it.
The new man has new hands with which to work and serve his Master. We have the hand of faith to receive Christ as our Savior and Redeemer, to lay hold on him for life and salvation, to embrace him, to hold him fast and not let him go. With the hand of faith, we are now able to handle him, the Word of life, and receive from him grace for grace. We have hands to work with and do our work, from principles of love and gratitude and for the glory of God, principles not of law and bondage, but of grace and liberty.
Those who are born of God have new feet with which to walk, with which to flee to Christ, the City of refuge. We walk to Christ on the feet of faith, and walk on in him all our days, just as we received him in the beginning. God’s children never outgrow the simplicity of faith. With these new feet of faith, we run with cheerfulness in the way of his commandments, following hard after him, and follow on to know him. By the grace of God the heaven born soul runs and is not weary. He walks and does not faint.
If the regenerate soul is a new creature in Christ, if regeneration is a resurrection from the dead, as the Word of God everywhere declares that it is, then it is utterly absurd to imagine that man has anything to do with the work. Can man create? Can man raise the dead? What nonsense it is to talk about people being born again by their free will, their decision for Jesus, saying what men call “the sinners’ prayer,” walking a church aisle, being baptized, or going through some religious ceremony! The new birth is God’s work. Our Lord does not say you must do something to get born again. He says, “Ye must BE born again!” The new birth is God’s work and God’s work alone! It is he and he alone who makes chosen, redeemed sinners new creatures. The new creation is his work of grace, for which he shall have all praise.
It is written, “Even when we were dead in sins, (God our Father, by the power of his Holy Spirit) hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:5-7).
September 23, 2007
Grace Baptist Church of Danville
2734 Old Stanford Road-Danville, Kentucky 40422-9438
Telephone (859) 236-8235 - E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Donald S. Fortner, Pastor
Schedule of Regular Services
10:00 A.M. Bible Classes
10:30 A.M. Morning Worship Service
6:30 P.M. Evening Worship Service
7:30 P.M. Mid-Week Worship Service
Television Broadcasts in Danville
Channel 6 - Sunday Morning 8:00 A.M.
Channel 6 - Wednesday Evening 6:00 P.M.
Channel 6 - Friday Evening 7:00 P.M.
Listen to sermons at FreeGraceRadio.com