Springs Of Wisdom:Peculiar Possession Of Christ
MANY unenlightened people think of God’s grace in isolation. But the scripture reveals virtues that are inseparably associated with it. For instance, it talks of “Grace and truth (that) came by Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).
Grace leads us to the truth, as it is in Jesus Christ, and thus, sets us free. “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8).
So, recipients of God’s grace have salvation, which makes them abound in good works and fruit of the Spirit. Knowing “the grace of God in truth”, “bringeth forth fruit” in the believer (Colossians 1:6).
God’s purpose in giving us grace is to “fulfil all [His] good pleasure, That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thessalonians 1:11,12). For this reason, we are exhorted “that ye receive not the grace of God in vain” (2 Corinthians 6:1).
We must avoid the error, danger and damnation of those who “turn the grace of our God into lasciviousness” (Jude 4,5), “looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God” (Hebrews 12:15-17).
Like grace, those with limited understanding of the scripture have also thought of the word ‘salvation’ in isolation. But salvation does not stand alone; it has root and fruit, cause and consequence, effect and evidence.
The effect of salvation in our hearts is righteousness in our lives. Salvation and righteousness have been joined together by divine revelation and redemption. “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans 10:10).
The true believer receives “righteousness from the God of his salvation” (Psalm 24:5). He can testify in truth with evidence that, “God hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness” (Isaiah 61:10). God’s grace brings salvation and teaches us to live righteously in this present world (Titus 2:11,12).
The grace, which brings salvation to all men, has been revealed. All classes of men, anyone, everyone, whosoever, the parent as well as the child, the master as well as the servant, the king as well as the subject, the rich as well as the poor, the learned as well as the ignorant.
None is excluded from the offer of salvation, as the provision has been made for all. God’s grace transforms hearts and lives. The transformation produces a desire to live like God, as revealed in Christ and there is an aversion or deep dislike for anything ungodly or unrighteous.
The desire for sensual indulgence or worldly pleasure is replaced with the love for God and His righteousness. Saved from sin, we are made free from the gross passion and pursuit of worldly-minded sinners around us.
The fleshly enjoyments of those who do not know God hold no interest for those who tasted the grace and God’s goodness in salvation. In this present world, our desire is to live “soberly”, with all passions and propensities under due restraint, “righteously”, living to please our righteous God in all things and at all times, and “godly”, acting and conducting ourselves as God’s true children, having the divine nature of holiness.
While we are living soberly, righteously and godly, we are also expectant and patiently waiting for the coming of our Lord. We want to be ready when He comes, so we are always to be in a posture of expectation.
Our Lord Jesus Christ is coming again. The certainty of His coming does not leave us in any doubt. Prophecy (future prediction of coming events) takes up a large portion of the Scripture.
There are over 660 general prophecies, 333 of them about Christ. One hundred and nine were fulfilled at His First Coming, 224 are still to be fulfilled at His Second Coming. There are over 1,500 Old Testament passages that refer to the Second Coming of Christ.
One out of every 25 New Testament verse directly refers to the Second Coming of Christ. For every time the Bible mentions the First Coming of Christ, it mentions His Second Coming eight times.
Jesus refers to His Second Coming 21 times, and over 50 times, we are told to be ready for His return. Christ’s Second Coming is a major theme in God’s word. Further Reading: Titus 2:11-15; 1 Timothy 2:4-6; 2 Peter 3:9; Romans 10:8-13; Matthew 1:21; John 8:10-12; Luke 19:1-10; Romans 6:1-12; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; Galatians 1:4; 1 John 3:4-10; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Philippians 3:20,21; John 14:1-3; 1 Peter 1:7,13; Colossians 3:1-4; Acts 24:15,16; Hebrews 9:27,28; 1 John 3:1-3; 2 Peter 3:12-14; Ephesians 5:25-27; Hebrews 9:13,14; Psalm 24:3,4; 51:6-10; Acts 15:9; 2 Timothy 2:19-22; 1 Peter 1:13-22; 2:9; 2 Timothy 4:1-5; 1 Timothy 5:20-22; 4:12-16.
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