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September 16 Today’s Reading: Obadiah 1-Jonah 4
“Salvation is of the Lord!”
“Salvation” is a big word. It includes much more than a believer’s initial experience of grace in regeneration and conversion. It includes everything required to bring fallen men from the pit of the damned into the eternal presence of God’s glory in heaven. And, from first to last, it is the work of God’s free grace alone. Man does nothing. Man contributes nothing. Nothing is determined by or dependent upon the will of man or the works or worth of man. “Salvation is of the Lord!”
All True Doctrine
This is the essence of all true doctrine. Today, sinners are called upon to walk an aisle, say a prayer, or otherwise do something to obtain salvation. The prophet of God declares, “Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord” (Exodus 14:13). “Salvation is of the Lord” in its planning (Ephesians 1:3-6; 2 Timothy 1:9; Romans 8:28-30), in its purchase (Romans 3:24-26; Galatians 3:l3; Hebrews 9:12; 1 Peter 1:18-20), in its execution (John 3:8; Ephesians 2:1-9) in its preservation (John 10:27-30; Jeremiah 32:38-40), and in its completion (Philippians 1:6; Ephesians 5:25-27; Jude 24-25).
Christ’s Work Alone
In old eternity, the Lord Jesus Christ assumed the responsibility of saving all God’s elect as the Surety of the everlasting covenant. When Christ agreed to save us, He became responsible to save us (John 10:16-18). In His life of obedience unto God as a man, our Savior worked out a perfect righteousness for us, which is imputed to all who believe, making us worthy of God’s acceptance (Romans 5:l9; Colossians 1:12). When He died upon the cross, the Son of God fully satisfied the claims of Divine justice against us; and He made that satisfaction for a particular people (1 John 4:9-10; Isaiah 53:8; John 10:15, 26). Christ purchased for His redeemed people all the rights and privileges of salvation and eternal life. Then, having purchased eternal salvation for His elect, the Lord Jesus Christ was exalted to the throne of universal dominion, to sovereignly govern the universe for the purpose of giving eternal life to His elect, redeemed people (John 17:2). And in the last day, Christ our covenant Surety will present all the sheep (all God’s elect) entrusted to His care, before the world began, holy, unblameable, unreprovable, and glorious before the throne of the triune God (Hebrews 2:13; Colossians 1:21-22). Not one of God’s elect shall ever perish, because “Salvation is of the Lord!”
Jimmy Swaggart revealed his heretical theology in the plainest terms possible. He said: “Free-will is our passport to salvation. Free-will is our foundation in salvation. Free-will is our ticket out of salvation. Salvation is not up to God, it is up to you. It is not up to God, it is up to you.” Such heresy none of God’s elect can endure.
Let no one be deceived by the delusion of freewill. Salvation is not up to you. It is up to God. “It is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy...God has mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth” (Romans 9:16-18). Free-will is not your passport to salvation. Our only passport to glory is the blood of Christ. Free-will is not your foundation in salvation. The only foundation of our souls is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and the work He has performed as our Substitute (1 Corinthians 3:11). Free-will is not your ticket out of salvation. — “Salvation is of the Lord!” It is therefore eternal (Ecclesiastes 3:14; John 10:27-29).
Mercy’s gate is God’s gate. He alone holds the key. He opens the gate of mercy to whom He will; and He shuts the gate of mercy against whom He will. Not all the power of man’s will can persuade God to open when He has shut; and all the power of hell cannot shut the gate of mercy when God opens it. It is God “that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth” (Revelation 3:7).
Others may overlook the blasphemous heresies of freewillism as “a minor error in doctrine,” and embrace freewillers as brethren, if they like. As for me, I assert that free-will works religion is damning heresy. All who preach it are false prophets. And all who believe it are lost in the darkness of that Satanic delusion. — “Salvation is of the Lord!” And all who know God, all who have experienced His salvation rejoice in that fact, giving the Triune Jehovah alone all praise, honor, and glory for His great salvation (Psalm 115:1)