UNDER THE DOMINION OF ANOTHER POWER

“I can say to myself that not only am I no longer under the dominion of sin, but I am under the dominion of another power that nothing can frustrate However weak I may be, it is the power of God that is working in me” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p70).

“God’s strong hand is on you; [l]ive carefree before God; he is most careful with you” (1 Pet 5:6-7 MSG).

“[L]et yourselves be pulled into a way of life shaped by God’s life” (1 Pet 1:13-16 MSG).

“[H]e’s a good Father. But don’t forget, he’s also a responsible Father, and won’t let you get by with sloppy living” (1 Pet 1:17 MSG).

“Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of God”(1 Pet 1:18-21 MSG).

“The more vile we are in our own eyes, the more precious he will be to us” John Newton (ref#322, p128).

“Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth” (1 John 3:18 ESV).

“Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death therefore what is earthy in you” (Col 3:2-5 ESV).

“’Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul’ (1 Pet 2:11). We do not receive our sanctification and are then delivered from these things. No; he tells us to abstain from them and to keep ourselves from them” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Jan 27th).

“As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ” (1 Pet 4:10-11 ESV).

“Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly” (1 Cor 13:13 MSG).

WORKING TOGETHER WITH CHRIST

“The Gospel announces that rest is only to be found in a knowledge of God, because God has made us, and He has made us in such a way that we never can know rest apart from Him” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, May 21st).

“God, who got you started in this spiritual adventure, shares with us the life of his Son and our Master Jesus. He will never give up on you. Never forget that” (1 Cor 1:7-9 MSG).

“[J]ust as it is the same life and sap that abides in the vine and in the branches, so it is the same life, which in its surpassing glory and fullness dwells in the God-Man-Mediator, that is also in the weakest believer. It is the same spirit, poured out upon the head, and received by him without measure, that in measure is given to his people. [I]t is his life-giving power that creates it at the first, that preserves it, and that causes it to grow from grace to grace, and from grace to glory” Charles Ross (ref#241, p119).

“To live by the Spirit is to live both in obedience to and dependence on the Holy Spirit. There is a balance then between our wills (expressed by obedience) and our faith (expressed by our dependence)” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p74-75).

“[Y]ou will see in the Scriptures the same operations are attributed to God and to man. God converts, and it is man that converts himself. God circumcises the heart, God gives a new heart; and it is man that should circumcise his heart and make himself a new heart” Louis Gaussen (ref#246, p9).

“We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him” (Rom 8:15-17 MSG)!

“[T]o accept [our] lot and rejoice in [our] toil—this is the gift of God. For [we] will not remember the days of [our] life because God keeps [us] occupied with joy in [our] heart” (Eccl 5:19-20 ESV).

“Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen” (Heb 13:20-21 ESV).

WE ARE RESPONSIBLE

[W]e do not understand the proper distinction between God’s provision and our own responsibility for holiness. ‘What am I to do myself, and what am I to rely on God to do?’” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p10).

 “God is always self-consistent and true to His way. He works only through man, but He demands things be done His way” Bob Sorge (ref#197, p14).

GOD said the following to Jeremiah and He also says this to us, His children: “[D]ress yourself for work; arise, and say to them everything that I command you. Do not be dismayed by them, lest I dismay you before them. And I, behold, I make you this day a fortified city, and iron pillar, and bronze walls. [T]hey will fight against you, but they shall not prevail against you, for I am with you, declares the LORD, to deliver you” (Jer 1:17-19 ESV).

“Ours is the duty, but His is the strength” Richard Steel (ref#225, April 18th).

“[T]he victory won by Jesus must be enforced by us. John Wesley wrote: ‘All this is indeed the work of God. It is God alone who can cast our Satan. But he is generally pleased to do this by man, as an instrument in his hand’” Doug Newton (ref#166, p91).

“[You] are responsible, although you have received all your strength from Christ to do it. [T]he sun works as an universal cause, and the tree as a particular cause. Christ works as an universal cause, and you work as a particular cause” William Bridge (ref#225, Oct 24th).

“He waits to work alongside man until man conforms to His way” Bob Sorge (ref#197, p15).

“[M]ay the LORD do what seems good to him” (2 Sam 10:12 ESV).

“[W]ork at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord” (Heb 12:14 NLT).

“’Purse holiness, for without holiness no one will see the Lord.’ The word pursue suggest two thoughts: first, that diligence and effort are required; and second, that it is a lifelong task” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p10).

“[H]e is unchangeable, and who can turn him back? What he desires, that he does. For he will complete what he appoints for me” (Job 23:13-14 ESV).

ABIDING IN CHRIST

My Part in sanctification as it relates to Abiding in the God-head – Part 3

“Jesus said, ‘He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit.’ Our challenge is not to bear fruit, but to abide” Charles F. Stanley (ref#230, p63).

“It is impossible to abide in him, unless we are first of all in him—vitally united to him by faith. [O]ur first care must be to get an interest in Christ, and our continued care must be to abide in him” Charles Ross (ref#241, p122).

“[T]hat which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 1:3 ESV).

“What does fellowship mean? To be in a state of fellowship means that we share in things. We are partakers or, if you life, partners—that idea is there intrinsically in the word. That means something like this: The Christian is one who has become a sharer in the life of God” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Sept 22nd).

“[W]hat is it to abide in Christ? It implies for one thing it’s a continued sense of need of him. [I]t implies also an abiding perception of Christ’s all-sufficiency and glory. Christians growing in poverty of spirit lies in this, that Christ is his. [T]o abide in Christ is to depend upon him—to trust in himto adhere to him to the end. And this union is mutual. [J]ust as truly as the soul is to abide in Christ, so Christ is to abide in the soul—Christ in the soul through the indwelling Spirit, and the soul in Christ by faith” Charles Ross (ref#241, p123).

“Jesus says: ‘Even as the Father hath loved me, I also have loved you.’ What, then, is the love wherewith the Father loves the Son? Not surely the love of pity and compassion, but that of complacency and delight. Of the like nature is the love of Jesus to his people. It is true indeed, that he loved them with a love of pity and compassion, when they were in their low and lost estate—when they were in the filthiness of sin; but it is also a most blessed truth that ever since he made them ‘his own’ by his effectual grace—ever since he clothed them with his righteousness and made them the temples of his Holy Spirit—he regards them with peculiar satisfaction and delight” Charles Ross (ref#241, p129).

“[I]t is this love of complacency and delight on the part of Jesus, in which we are exhorted to ‘continue,’ or rather to ‘abide.’” Charles Ross (ref#241, p130).

“Christians are not merely people who are a little bit better than they once were and who have just added certain things to their lives. Rather, they are men and women who have received the divine life” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Sept 22nd).

ABIDING IN GOD

My Part in Sanctification as it Relates to Abiding in the God-head – Part 2

“[T]he Christian is one who has come to know God as Father. [W]e have the spirit of adoption, the result of which is that we know God in an intimate way so that we address Him as ‘Abba, Father’ because we are His children. This also means that we delight in God and that we have joy in His presence. We know God in that way” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Sept 23rd).

“Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him” (1 John 4:15-16 ESV).

“It is God speaking to me; it is God saying something and calling forth a response in me. ‘We love him, because he first loved us.’ God has fellowship with us in that way” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Sept 24th).

“He reveals His will to us. He shows us what He would have us to do. He leads us. He opens doors and shuts them; sometimes He puts up barriers and obstacles. It means you are aware of the fact that you are in the hands of God, and that He is dealing with you, and that as you go forward in this journey called life, God is there. That is having fellowship with God—knowing that He is there in these various ways in which He manipulates our lives and speaks to us and gives us wisdom and understanding” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Sept 24th).

“[F]ellowship with God is such a high privilege that one can regard nothing as being greater and higher” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#211, p11).

ABIDING IN GOD

My Part in Sanctification as it Relates to Abiding in the God-head – Part 1

“Communion with God is the life of religion” Matthew Barker (ref#225, Aug 12th).

“Christians are not men and women who are hoping for salvation, but those who have experienced it. They have it; there is no uncertainty. They ‘know whom [they] have believed’ (2 Tim 1:12)” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Sept 21st).

“[I]f we are ‘in Christ’ all that is in Christ comes to us by free grace, without effort on our part but on the ground of simple faith” Watchman Nee (ref#387, p49).

“Your heart will never be satisfied in things. No, your heart will be satisfied only in the Giver of the things. [T]he physical, created world was designed to be glorious, but these glories cannot satisfy your heart. You were made for him. Your heart was designed to be controlled by worship of him. Your inner security is meant to come from rest in him. Your sense of well-being is intended to come from a reliance on His wisdom, power, and love” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, May 24th).

“[H]e has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire” (2 Pet 1:4 ESV).

“’Our fellowship is with the Father.’ We have communion with God. This can be looked at from our side. What does this wondrous thing that has been made possible for us in Christ mean from our side? It means, obviously and of necessity, that we have come to know God. God is no longer a stranger somewhere away in the heavens; He is no longer some stray force or power somewhere, some supreme energy. God is no longer some potentate or lawgiver far removed and faraway from us; God now is someone we know” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Sept 23rd).

“It is not merely that you are having communion and association with God, but that you are in a vital union with Him [W]e are thus born of God and in this organic internal relationship to Him” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#211, p11).

THINKING OF OTHERS 2

Is my religion as obvious as a black eye just waiting to be asked about?

“Even though I am free of the demands and expectations of everyone, I have voluntarily become a servant to any and all in order to reach a wide range of people: religious, nonreligious, meticulous moralists, loose-living immoralists, the defeated, the demoralized—whoever. I didn’t take on their way of life. I kept my bearings in Christ—but I entered their world and tried to experience things from their point of view. I’ve become just about every sort of servant there is in my attempts to lead those I meet into a God-save life. I did all this because of the Message. I didn’t just want to talk about it; I wanted to be in on it” (1 Cor 9:19-23 MSG)!

“When have you resisted helping people in trouble, saying they brought it on themselves? Have you shunned those who are ungodly or cut off those who are ungrateful? [L]et us be challenged by Christ’s teaching to extend love to anyone in need” John Calvin (ref#164, June 15th).

“[N]o one gives grace better than a person who is deeply convinced of his own need of it” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Jan 19th).

“[C]ontend for the faith. [C]ontend means, to strive, to fight, to labour fervently. Lukewarmness neither pleases our Captain, nor prevails over our adversary. Everyone must give account for his idle words, and for his idle silence” Willian Jenkyn (ref#225, April 16th).

“Reprove seriously. Reprove compassionately. Soft words and hard arguments go well together. Passion will heat the sinner’s blood, but compassion will heal his conscience. Our reprimanding may be sharp, but our spirits must be meek. The reprover should have a lion’s stout heart, or he will not be faithful, and a lady’s soft hand, or he is not likely to be successful” George Swinnock (ref#225, Sept 26th).

“Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:15-16 ESV).

THINKING OF OTHERS 1

“Love is the greatest and most excellent thing we are masters of” Henry Scougal (ref#321, p71).

“Christ sacrificed his life for us. This is why we ought to live sacrificially for our fellow believers, and not just be out for ourselves” (1 John 3:16-17 MSG).

“We have greater work to do here than merely securing our own salvation We are members of the world and Church, and we must labour to do good to many. We are trusted with our Master’s talents to do our best, to propagate His truth, grace, and Church; to bring home souls, honour His cause, edify His flock, and further the salvation of as many as we can. All this to be done on earth, if we are to secure our goal in heaven. It is then an error, though it is but a few that are guilty of it, to think that religion only concerns the life to come” Richard Baxter (ref#225, April 19th).

“It’s no light thing to know that we’ll all one day stand in that place of Judgment. That’s why we work urgently with everyone we meet to get them ready to face God” (2 Cor 5:11-14 MSG).

God is not satisfied with informing you about the work of his kingdom, He transforms you to participate in the work of his kingdom. He has called all his children to be his ambassadors, that is, to represent his message and his character in whatever environment he has placed them. You have been called to be the look on his face, the tone of his voice, and the touch of his hand. You are to represent his presence and his love. You are placed where you are to make his mercy and faithfulness visible and concrete. His ambassadorial call drives us to him to receive the grace we need to represent his grace in the lives of others” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Nov 10th).

Note: Evangelism is my whole life; it’s not just opening my mouth and talking about GOD.

“Stay alert. This is hazardous work I’m assigning you. You’re going to be like sheep running through a wolf pack, so don’t call attention to yourselves. Be as shrewd as a snake, inoffensive as a dove” (Matt 10:16 MSG).

OUR WEAKNESSES

“We are ready to turn into any house, stay and play with everything in our way, and sit down on every green bank, and much ado there is to get us home” Richard Baxter (ref#225, May 21st). Note: CHRIST does not just sit on His throne.

“[T]o keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited” (2 Cor 12:7 ESV).

“Paul’s earthy weakness, not his revelations, are to be the platform for demonstrating the Lord’s power and grace” ESV Study Bible (ref#125, p2238).

“[D]o not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse no barn, and yet God feeds them. O you of little faith! [D]o not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried” (Luke 12:22-24, 28-29 ESV).

“Be strong and courageous” (Josh 1:6 ESV).

“Take courage, for there must be a consciousness of weakness before the Lord will give you victory. Your emptiness is but the preparation for your being filled, and your casting down is but the making ready for your lifting up.

When I am weak then am I strong,

Grace is my shield and Christ my song” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, Nov 4th AM).

“A primary qualification for serving God with any amount of success, and for doing God’s work well and triumphantly, is a sense of our own weakness” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, Nov 4th AM).

“Purity is mastery over the inferior appetites” J.I. Packer (ref#321, p10).

“Most men study rather how to pass away their time than to redeem it” Thomas Case (ref#225, Dec 12th).

“Weak, unskillful, and unfaithful, as I am in practice, the Lord has been pleased to give me some idea of what a Christian ought to be, and of what is actually attainable in the present life” John Newton (ref#322, p135).

“Our native strength is but another term for utter weakness.” Octavius Winslow

PLACING OURSELVES IN THE WILL OF GOD

“[I]t is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Phil 2:13 ESV).

“[T]he Lord allows us to succeed, when we in good faith discharge our duty and shun nothing that he commands. How many times have we abandoned our duties because we thought that success could only come through disobedience” John Calvin (ref#164, Jan 10th)?

“Behold on what sure foundation his happiness is built whose soul is possessed with divine love, whose will is transformed into the will of God, and whose greatest desire is, that his Maker should be pleased! Oh! the peace, the rest, the satisfaction that attendeth such a temper of mind” Henry Scougal (ref#321, p78)!

“[W]hoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. [W]hoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked” (1 John 2:5-6 ESV).

“[L]et people learn to devote themselves to good works, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not be unfruitful” (Titus 3:14 ESV).

“[H]oliness is a process, something we never completely attain in this life. [A]s we begin to conform to the will of God in one area of life, He reveals to us our need in another area” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p10).

“We are not our own, therefore neither our reason nor our will should guide us in our thoughts and actions. We should not seek what is expedient to the flesh. [L]et us forget ourselves and our own interests as far as possible. [L]et his wisdom and will dominate all our actions” John Calvin (ref#313, p21).

“The Gospel of Jesus Christ does not so much take the Christian out of the world as take the world out of the Christian. [I]f the world is not in them, the world outside them will not be able to affect them” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, March 20th).