The Spirit’s Means of Grace

The primary* means of grace in the church that give us faith, sustains faith and strengthens faith is the preaching of the word of God by a man lawfully called, faithfully proclaiming the true Gospel, the word of God, supported by the sacraments properly administered. Both preaching and sacraments point to Jesus  Christ and it is he who speaks and signifies to us through them by his Holy Spirit.

*Prayer, Bible reading, study and memorisation, godly fellowship and faithful witness are secondary means.

Message

Joshua Engelsma, Doon PR Church

Advertisements

Mary Mediatrix?

 

 

I Peter 3:18 states that Christ ONCE suffered for sins (hence the offence of the mass) that he might bring us to God. ONLY HE  atoned for the sins of his people and reconciles us to God-NOT Mary. The verse goes on to say that he was put to death in the flesh but quickened (resurrected) by the Spirit, ONLY HE DIED AND WAS RESURRECTED FOR SIN. Hence only he through his death can justify sinners. He is the ONLY mediator (I Timothy 2:4). Here is the link to a more full and comprehensive article to a devotee of Mary http://www.limerickreformed.com/blog/2016/4/24/an-answer-to-a-devotee-of-mary

Christ’s fulness

“This is the Beloved of our souls, “holy, harmless, undefiled;” “full of grace and truth;” — full, to a sufficiency of grace (for us), — full to be an example to men and angels as
to obedience, full of uninterrupted communion with God, — full and a ready supply to others, — full, to suit all the occasions and necessities of the souls of men, — full, to a glory not unbecoming the person of the Son of God, — full, to a perfect victory, in trials, over all temptations, — full, to keep the whole holy law of God, full to the utmost capacity of a limited, created, finite nature, — full, to the greatest beauty and glory of a living temple of God, — full, to the full pleasure and delight of the soul of his Father, — full as an everlasting monument of the glory of God, in giving such inconceivable excellencies to the Son of man.”

“For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.” Colossians 2:9

John Owen (adapted)

What blasphemy then and heresy to detract from his unique fullness and suitability by interposing or substituting another as redeemer like Mary or another as head of his church like the pope. To love the Lord Jesus Christ is to detest these delusions just as those who hold them actually detest Christ by their pride, ignorance and un-biblical assertions.

 

Sure and steadfast

Many of us men were at one time in the Boys’ Brigade but it’s fair to say we knew little of what their motto really meant! It is taken from Hebrews 6.

Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.” Hebrews 6:17-20.

An anchor  that is properly stuck fast, is something fixed and immovable guaranteeing that the ship will remain where it is. Our hope in Christ, who is already in heaven, indeed Christ himself, is our hope, our certainty that one day we will be with him. He is fixed there, reigning in glory and all the blessedness in him is promised, indeed sworn to be given us, as it was to Abraham thousands of years ago (v18).

Three Cups

THESE ARE WONDERFUL POWERFUL MESSAGES.

THREE CUPS

By Rev Carl Haak (Reformed Witness Hour)

“Of all the truths of the sufferings of Jesus Christ there are none so dear as the truth that He suffered voluntarily. He was not dragged to the cross against His will. He did not endure His suffering as a passive victim, reluctantly, with cold resignation. But He went to the cross and endured His suffering willingly, zealously, and voluntarily…

Scripture presents this truth to us in a figure of speech, in the figure of a cup which He willingly drank. All the sufferings necessary to make full payment for our sins were poured into a cup which the Father presented to His Son, the Son of God, who knew what was in that cup and who loved us, drank the cup, and then dashed the empty cup on the ground before the cross.”

Read to find out more of our Lord’s willing suffering for His people.

Declared Righteous

 

The great Biblical doctrine of justification is a declaration of the righteousness of all who believe in Jesus Christ for salvation before:

  1. The heavenly court of God (and hence before all angels). Job 1:8, Romans 8:1
  2. At the judgment day. II Tim.1:12, Rom.5:18-19.
  3. In our own conscience. I John 5:13, Rom. 4:20-5:1.
  4. Before the church on confession of faith and membership (not absolute). Rom.10:9-10.

The Justification of the Ungodly

Key subject in this the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.

In summary Romans 4:4-5 teaches that when we speak of man relating to God:

  • Boasting is excluded
  • God is no man’s debtor
  • Man must realize he is ungodly
  • He must repudiate his own works
  • He must believe God justifies
  • The only righteousness acceptable to God is Christ’s

And I have to add that salvation (justification and all that follows from it) is by grace, through faith in Christ.

Sermon: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azGsqr9sNrs

 

Does the Westminster Confession teach “Common grace” or a remnant of the image of God in man?

Head—Paragraph —Teaching
III 5 Free grace brings unconditional election
IV 2 Image of God is knowledge, righteousness and true holiness
IV 5 God is gracious to his people
IV 6 God withholds grace from reprobate
VI 1,2 Total depravity of man, fallen from righteousness
VII 3 Covenant of grace is ratified by Christ and for the elect
VIII 3 Christ is full of grace
X 1,2 Grace and salvation comes by Christ causing among his people a willingness to come and respond to his effectual call
XI 3 Justification is by grace
XII Adoption is by grace and God is on a throne of grace
XIII 3 We are called to grow in grace
XV 1,3 Repentance is an evangelical grace. Grace is in Christ.
XVI 3 Graces are received by the Holy Spirit
XVII 2 Covenant of grace
XVIII 1,2 Elect may be assured of being in a state of grace by their faith, love, godly walk and evidence of graces
XIX 7 The law is not contrary to grace of the gospel
XXVI 1 We have fellowship in Christian grace and communion in each other’s graces
XXVII, XVIII 1,1 The sacraments (baptism and Lord’s Supper) are signs and seals of the covenant of grace and put a visible difference between church and world
From the above references grace is only for God’s elect, it is always particular just as the atonement was, and it renews them in the image of God, calling them out and separating them from the ungodly world who being totally depraved have nothing of that image.