Monday, November 28, 2016

His incredible gift . . .



But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, (Romans 3:21–24)

This is the Gospel. It is not law whereby God justifies me; it is grace and a gift. It is the redemption that is in Christ. It is an amazing reality.

Chambers says it well. His words are repeated below, slightly changed to be personal . . .

The Gospel of the grace of God awakens an intense longing in human souls and an equally intense resentment — because the revelation which it brings is not palatable. There is a certain pride in me that will give, but to come and accept is another thing. I might be willing to spend my life, to give myself in consecration. I will do many things, but my sinful flesh resists the humiliation of being the same as the most hell-deserving sinner. Without the Holy Spirit, I would resist the Gospel that tells me that all I have to do is to accept the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ.

I once had to realize and now must always remember that I cannot earn or win anything from God. I must either receive it as a gift or do without it. The greatest blessing spiritually is the knowledge that I am destitute — and until I do, the Lord can do nothing for me. If I think I am sufficient of myself, I miss out. Instead, I must always enter into and walk in His Kingdom through the door of destitution with poverty of spirit.

As long as I am rich, possessed of anything in the way of pride or independence, I am blocking God’s blessings. It is only when I am spiritually starving that I want and will receive the Holy Spirit. God’s gift of His very Self is made effective in me by the Holy Spirit; He imparts the quickening life of Jesus. This grace puts ‘the beyond’ within, and immediately rises up to ‘the above’ — lifting me into the domain where Jesus lives.
God says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” (John 3:5) and . . . 

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1–4) and . . .

“Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.” (Romans 8:8–11)

Praise God for His incredible gift!

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