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“Oh, the unspeakable greatness of that exchange,—the Sinless One is condemned, and he who is guilty goes free; the Blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is brought into blessing; the Life dies, and the dead live; the Glory is whelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory.” Trailady

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A person God turned around many times.

Monday, November 17, 2014

The power of the promise

Hebrews 4:16 (e-Sword)
 
(KJV)  Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
 
(BBE)  Then let us come near to the seat of grace without fear, so that mercy may be given to us, and we may get grace for our help in time of need.
 
(CEV)  So whenever we are in need, we should come bravely before the throne of our merciful God. There we will be treated with undeserved kindness, and we will find help.
 
(DRB)  Let us go therefore with confidence to the throne of grace: that we may obtain mercy and find grace in seasonable aid.
 
(ERV)  With Jesus as our high priest, we can feel free to come before God’s throne where there is grace. There we receive mercy and kindness to help us when we need it.
 
(ESV)  Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
 
(GNB)  Let us have confidence, then, and approach God’s throne, where there is grace. There we will receive mercy and find grace to help us just when we need it.
 
(GW)  So we can go confidently to the throne of God’s kindness to receive mercy and find kindness, which will help us at the right time.
 
(LEB)  Therefore let us approach with confidence to the throne of grace, in order that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
 
(LITV)  Therefore, let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy, and we may find grace for timely help.
 
(YLT)  we may come near, then, with freedom, to the throne of the grace, that we may receive kindness, and find grace--for seasonable help.
 
 (KJV+)  Let us thereforeG3767 comeG4334 boldlyG3326 G3954 unto theG3588 throneG2362 of grace,G5485 thatG2443 we may obtainG2983 mercy,G1656 andG2532 findG2147 graceG5485 to help in time of need.G1519 G2121 G996
 
Strong’s Concordance says of the word “boldly”, G3954 parrhēsia From G3956 [thoroughly] and a derivative of G4483 [speak, command]; all out spokenness, that is, frankness, bluntness, publicity; by implication assurance: - bold (X -ly, -ness, -ness of speech), confidence, X freely, X openly, X plainly ( -ness).
 
How can we come to Jesus with confidence?
 
Can we march right up to Him and claim His love? Can we simply lay claim to His mercy? Does faith happen because we have the strength of ourselves to boldly believe? Do we have innate faith?
 
No. That isn’t how redemption works. And multitudes have become disillusioned because they sought God that way. This is what every false worship has been based upon—pure boldness. Peter thought he could come to Jesus with that kind of boldness on a certain occasion. And how successful was he in getting a blessing from the Prince of peace?
 
“Then Peter took Him, and began to rebuke Him, saying, Be it far from Thee, Lord: this shall not be unto Thee. But He turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind Me, Satan: thou art an offence unto Me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.” (Matt. 16:22,23).
 
Peter had abandoned his previous stance of humility from a few minutes before. What caused this? Prior to his sudden departure from Christ he had been filled with the Spirit of the Father. His Master was in his presence and Jesus was filling Peter with a continual flow of evidences of His love and heavenly character. As seen in the Revelation symbols, “I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.” (Rev. 5:6). Jesus had the Spirit without measure; the knowledge of God was exuding Christ continuously. Drawn to Jesus, Peter had unwittingly lowered his natural-born prejudices and the Spirit of God got through to him.
 
It was evidence that Peter had, which allowed him to reach up his hand of faith and take hold of the throne of God. By faith Peter received the revelation from the Father for which Jesus commended him. But, faith rests on evidence, and Peter quickly lost the evidence from Jesus that had overwhelmed him. He raised back up his self-defenses and closed off the opening for the Spirit of God when he heard Jesus forewarning them of His suffering and death. So, even in the presence of Christ, Peter became full of unbelief, self-will, and rebellion. Then, without evidence he dared to approach Him in whom alone is the way to the throne of grace.
 
Peter didn’t humbly approach the Lord. He carelessly man-handled the Prince of glory. He treated the holy Son of God with dishonor, and was rebuffed with a powerful rebuke. Peter came to Jesus; yes, he came to the throne of grace, but not with hoping in Christ’s evidence. He was full of himself.
 
“Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: the one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds: but the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defence of the gospel.” (Phil. 1:15-17).
 
It is the lack of present evidence that leads many to misrepresent God. They are full of themselves because they have no root of the Spirit in themselves. The evidences of Christ’s love and character do not fill their minds and hearts. They are bold to speak, but their spirit does not harmonize with the Spirit of God. So, they are empty of the Spirit and fulfill the purposes of Satan, as Peter did. They become a tempter of Christ, who refuses to be tempted. They do the same as Eve did to Adam in the Garden. They are workers of iniquity; they add affliction to Christ and bring Him into open shame.
 
They need evidence, if they will choose to seek it out. Then they would have true faith; then they may come to God confidently, and stand before Him as His representatives in a world of sin. Where can they get overcoming faith,as an anchor to the soul? From the Holy Scriptures; from the promises Jesus gave us. Faith is the gift of God. “Whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.” (1Jn. 5:4).
 
True faith cannot exist without a medium, an agency, a vehicle. The promise is the medium of faith and is an anchor to the soul. We cannot believe God will forgive sin without His promise that He will. It’s when we hear Him say, “I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more” (Heb. 8:12), that we then trust that He will. Otherwise, we cannot hope in His reconciliation with us. We have to have His promise in hand when we go to Him. Otherwise, we have an unholy boldness, a swashbuckling, proud braggadocio that is full of self. Self offers to the holy God the sacrifice of a ravenous swine like the Gentiles do. Without the promises the Spirit, which comes with the living word, cannot get through our natural-born prejudices. Therefore, without faith in His promises, we have no basis for God’s justifying forgiveness and acceptance. We dared to propitiate Him ourselves, rather than rely upon His anointed means of propitiation—the Spirit of His Son and the Word of God.
 
The power of redemption is in God’s promise of redemption. The power of God’s Spirit is in laying hold of God’s promise of His Spirit.
 
“And, behold, I send the promise of My Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.” (Lk. 24:49).
 
Did not Jesus give us the following promise? “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?” (Lk. 11:13). And with the Spirit comes the justification and acceptance from God that the world so much needs.
 
“For when God made promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no greater, He sware by Himself,
Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee.
And so, after he [Abraham] had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.
For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation is to them an end of all strife.
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 stedfast, 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.” (Heb. 6:13-20)
 
No sooner is the promise received then faith happens. And no sooner does faith come to us so that we can act on it, then the anointing of Christ’s Spirit comes. We have a Saviour from sin. We have a merciful High Priest. But it’s not enough for me to say God will forgive you.  Who am I? I’m just another example of failure. The Bible must say it. God must say that He will forgive sinners. There is no weight to my word to tell you that God loves you, or even to tell myself that God loves me. I must hear it from God Himself. Others must hear it from God, too.
 
“Blessed be the LORD, that hath given rest unto His people Israel, according to all that He promised: there hath not failed one word of all His good promise, which He promised by the hand of Moses His servant. The LORD our God be with us, as He was with our fathers: let Him not leave us, nor forsake us: that He may incline our hearts unto Him, to walk in all His ways, and to keep His commandments, and His statutes, and His judgments, which He commanded our fathers.” (1Ki. 8:56-58).
 
“Of this man’s [David’s] seed hath God according to His promise raised unto Israel a Saviour, Jesus.” (Acts 13:23).
 
“And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers,
God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that He hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee.
And as concerning that He raised Him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption, He said on this wise, I will give you the sure mercies of David.
Wherefore He saith also in another psalm, Thou shalt not suffer Thine Holy One to see corruption.
For David, after he had served his own generation by the will of God, fell on sleep, and was laid unto his fathers, and saw corruption:
But He, whom God raised again, saw no corruption.
Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this Man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins:
And by Him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.” (Acts 13:32-39).
 
“They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed. For this is the word of promise, At this time will I come, and Sara shall have a son. And not only this; but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac;  (for the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of Him that calleth;)” (Rom. 9:8-11).
 
“I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Matt. 9:13).
 
“That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.… But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.… And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (Gal. 3:14,22-24,29).
 
“In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise.” (Eph. 1:13).
 
“Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, He hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.” (Acts 2:33).
 
“That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: but now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.” (Eph. 2:12,13).
 
“Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into His rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.” (Heb. 4:1).
 
“And this is the promise that He hath promised us, even eternal life” (1Jn. 2:25), an eternal life that begins as soon as we trust in Jesus’ promise of mercy.

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