January 6, 2008
It is my earnest prayer that God my Father will give me grace ever to help and never hinder, ever to comfort and never discourage, ever to be used by and never to use his children.
Daily Readings for the Week of January 6-13
· Pastor Henry Mahan is scheduled to preach here on Sunday, January 27th.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Emily Rice-8th Ryan Hellar-12th
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY: Merle & Charlotte Hart-10th
NURSERY DUTY THIS WEEK
Today: Laura Peterson (AM) Emily Rice (PM) Tuesday: Jayalita McCormack
This New Year — Don Fortner
(Tune: Crown Him With Many Crowns #62 — SMD)
1. Father, before Your throne we come with joy and fear,
To make Your grace and glory known, and thus begin this year.
What favors we have known! What mercies we now share!
What boundless goodness You have shown to open this new year!
2. Indulgent mercy spares the lost among us here;
Oh, may Your mighty grace appear to save them in this year!
Our many sins forgive; our souls with Your grace cheer;
And teach us each for You to live, our Lord throughout this year.
3. Teach us to do your will, whatever may appear;
Though tried and tempted, keep us still by grace throughout the year.
Confirm our hearts in grace, in faith and godly fear;
And let Christ be our joy and peace through all the coming year!
Beware of any preacher who continually redefines his doctrine. “Buy the truth and sell it not” is the command of God (Proverbs 23:23). I recently read a sermon by Pastor Henry Mahan on Justification. It was written in 1952. It might just as well have been written yesterday, because his doctrine today is precisely what it was fifty-six years ago. That is exactly as it should be. If we walk in “the old paths” of gospel truth, we walk in “the good way” and “find rest” for our souls (Jeremiah 6:16). Those who are not content to walk in “the old paths” are ever looking for something new and revising their doctrine. They can never find rest for themselves nor minister rest to others. Wherever they are, turbulence surrounds them.
God and Politicians — Pastor Joe Terrell
For the past generation we have witnessed in our nation the rise of the religious right as a political force. And as we enter another election year the issue of religion has once again been thrown into the mix of issues that the candidates for president must address. We even have one man who was once the pastor of a Baptist church promoting himself as “a Christian leader.” Many of the religious right have flocked to him with the idea that having such a leader in the White House will advance the cause of the church in this world. Others of the religious right have been drawn to a Mormon. Though they disagree with some points of his theology, their desire for a socially conservative leader has made some of them lower their standards for what constitutes the truth and include this man within the fold of Christians in order that they might vote for him with a good conscience.
The sad and dangerous truth in all of this is that those who claim to be a part of the Lord’s church are turning to the power of man in the hope of advancing the cause of God. There can hardly be a more “Beast”-ly and antichristian thing to do! Is it any wonder that the professed church has so little spiritual influence in this world when it turns to the world, itself, for help?
The true enemy of the church is none other than Satan; and he has never feared the power of the state. In one sense, he owns that power. The church alone has the one power able to overthrow him: the blood of the Lamb, and her testimony of the gospel of that blood. It was not with weapons of steel or the authority of the government that the early church overcame the power of Rome, but with the testimony of Jesus Christ. Nor was it with steel and politics that the reformers of the 15th and 16th centuries overcame the re-incarnation of Rome in their day. It was with a courageous and clear declaration of God’s grace in Christ. And the manifestations of wickedness in our day cannot be overcome by the military or political powers; and the church of the Lord Jesus must not look to those powers for aid.
We face troubling issues in our day. It is tempting to seek a solution to them by an appeal to governmental powers or even an attempt to grasp such powers for ourselves. But that is a temptation we must resist. I sincerely hope that God will assign wise and decent men to lead our country so that we may live peaceable lives as we worship God; and to this end I will pray (1 Timothy 2.1-3). But let us not look to those leaders, but to the God who appoints them. And let us not seek their power, but use the power put in our hands: the blood of the Lamb and the testimony of the Lord Jesus.
Justification, as it is revealed in Holy Scripture, is much more than a mere forensic (legal) standing. It is a state of being (Romans 5:1-11). It is more than a judicial declaration. Justification is the real emancipation of our souls in Christ. To be justified before God is to be free of guilt in your conscience by the sprinkling of Christ’s blood, that is by the Spirit’s application of Christ’s atonement (Hebrews 9:14).
God’s Salvation is One
My theology professors used to insist, “We must not confuse the teachings of the Bible.” I have often heard and read warnings urging the need to view election, redemption, justification, sanctification, and regeneration as distinct and separate things. But the Word of God never makes such distinctions. The Revelation of God is one; and God’s salvation is one.
Election was finished in eternity; and God’s elect are spoken of as being saved (in the fullest possible sense of that word) from eternity (Romans 8:30; Ephesians 1:3; 2 Timothy 1:9)). But the sovereign, eternal purpose of God the Father is not enough to save anyone. Blood must be shed. Christ had to die, for “without shedding of blood is no remission.” We were redeemed, justified, and sanctified when Christ died in our place at Calvary. When he cried, “It is finished,” redemption’s work was done. Sin was put away. Righteousness was brought in. Atonement was made. The redemption of our souls was accomplished.
Still, something else is required. The precious blood of Christ is not enough to make us “meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.” If we are saved, if we are to enter into heaven’s eternal glory, something else is necessary, just as necessary as the work of the Father and the work of the Son. — We must be saved by the blessed work of God the Holy Spirit in the experience of grace (Titus 3:5-7).
It is the experience of grace that gives the sinner hope before God. God’s purpose made the salvation of his elect sure, but gives hope to no one. Christ’s death upon the cross is the singular basis of the sinner’s hope, but gives hope to none. It is not Christ dying in your place that gives hope, but “Christ in you,” formed in you by God the Holy Spirit in the experience of grace, that God says “is the hope of glory.”
In the new birth we are made new creatures in Christ, made “partakers of the divine nature.” God the Holy Spirit creates in us a new life. He gives chosen, redeemed sinners an entirely new nature, forms Christ in us, puts righteousness in us, makes us righteous, pure, and holy, puts in us a spirit in which there is no guile, and makes us “meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light”. This new man is “Christ in you, the hope of glory”. — This is that “holiness” we must have, “without it no man shall see the Lord.” It is written, “There shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”
It takes all the gracious operations of the triune God to save us. God’s salvation is one thing. None of its parts are more or less important. Take away redemption and election is meaningless. Take away regeneration and redemption is meaningless.
January 6, 2008
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