So he shepherded them according to the integrity of his heart, And guided them with his skillful hands.Psalm 78:72(NASB)
Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end. (Isaiah 9:7)
Everything which has to do with the realization of God's purpose in creating man, and this world, and its universe, is a matter of knowing God in Christ, which, of course, means knowing Christ. Every aspect and detail of God's will and God's way and God's end is a matter of knowing the Lord Jesus. All progress, as all life, rests upon that knowing Him. The Christian life here is meant to be one of continuous growth and development and progress, but that only takes place as we come to know more, and still more, of the meaning of the Lord Jesus. This progress will not stop when we leave this world, and when time gives place to eternity: "Of the increase of His kingdom there will be no end." Stagnation is no mark of Life, and Life there will be ever manifesting itself in new and more wonderful fullnesses and forms. Therefore, the knowledge of Christ which will, in time and eternity, be the secret of growth and progress, will continue in heaven, and it will take eternity to exhaust it....
Seeing He is so vast, so immense, so many-sided, we can only see Him from one standpoint at a time; we have to move round to see Him from every angle. And at this time we are just looking at the Lord Jesus from one of the many angles, or points of view, which is this particular aspect of His significance: that He, in His Person and in His work, stands related to an eternal, heavenly order. He Himself, in His wonderful, complex Person, is the very embodiment of all the principles and laws of a great heavenly order. When everything is conformed to Christ and takes its character from Him, it will be one glorious, harmonious whole, perfected into one, just one glorious unity... I have only opened a window to you through which you can see a universe.
Our Savior Jesus Christ … has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. § He will swallow up death forever, and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces; the rebuke of His people He will take away from all the earth; for the Lord has spoken. § When this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. § Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. § As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.
If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. § The Father … has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.
You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. § You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden … Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God" (Acts 20:27).
In regard to the external Cross, the obvious fact is that "Christ died for our sins." As to the internal Cross, while not so obvious, it is still a fact that we are to be "always delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh" (2 Cor. 4:11).
"Popular Fundamentalist theology has emphasized the utility of the Cross rather than the beauty of the One who died on it. The saved man's relation to the Lord Jesus has been made contractual instead of personal. The work' of Christ has been stressed until it has eclipsed the Person of Christ. Substitution has been allowed to supersede identification. What He did for us seems to be more important than what He did to us." -A.W.T.
"The death of the Lord Jesus was not only an atonement for sins, but a triumph over sin. By faith we see our sins not only on His head for our pardon, but sin under His feet for our deliverance. Multitudes who glory in the outward Cross know nothing of that inward crucifixion which it has also made possible, whereby they are delivered from the power of self and sin, the world, the flesh, and the devil. That they do not know: That their old man was crucified with him, that the body of sin might be done away, so that they should no longer be in bondage to sin' (Rom. 6:6)." -G.M.
"We are not only to take by faith the fact that the Lord Jesus died for us to pay the price and penalty of our sins, but we are to appropriate by faith the fact that He also took us to the Cross with Him. In Christ, God put to death our old man that we might be delivered from the power and dominion of sin in our lives. So the story of the pathway of faith begins with Calvary and our identification with the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus." -G.M.
"You were set free from the tyranny of sin" (Rom. 6:18, Wey.).
“And he saw him no more.” 2 Kings 2:12
It is not wrong to depend upon Elijah as long as God gives him to you, but remember the time will come when he will have to go; when he stands no more to you as your guide and leader, because God does not intend he should. You say - "I cannot go on without Elijah." God says you must.
Alone at your Jordan. v.14. Jordan is the type of separation where there is no fellowship with anyone else, and where no one can take the responsibility for you. You have to put to the test now what you learned when you were with your Elijah. You have been to Jordan over and over again with Elijah, but now you are up against it alone. It is no use saying you cannot go; this experience has come, and you must go. If you want to know whether God is the God you have faith to believe Him to be, then go through your Jordan alone.
Alone at your Jericho. v.15. Jericho is the place where you have seen your Elijah do great things. When you come to your Jericho you have a strong disinclination to take the initiative and trust in God, you want someone else to take it for you. If you remain true to what you learned with Elijah, you will get the sign that God is with you.
Alone at your Bethel. v.23. At your Bethel you will find yourself at your wits' end and at the beginning of God's wisdom. When you get to your wits' end and feel inclined to succumb to panic, don't; stand true to God and He will bring His truth out in a way that will make your life a sacrament. Put into practice what you learned with your Elijah, use his cloak and pray. Determine to trust in God and do not look for Elijah any more.
No other New Testament phrase occurs with greater frequency than “In Christ” No other more vital, biblical formula is so often presented as being “In Christ.” Sometimes it is BY Him, sometimes THROUGH Him or WITH Him or IN Him, but the intrinsic meaning of this glorious phrase – is His all-inclusiveness. Two hundred times this sublime expression is articulated in Scripture. Two hundred times the Word of God points the believer to this crucial locution.
In one magnificent consummate declaration, we are told the purpose of this “IN” – that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times, He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth, — IN HIM.” Eph.1:10. God Himself purposes and plans to sum up all things in Christ. God Himself determined that in the eternal, nothing has any place except, "IN HIM.”
The plan; the purpose; the resources; the times; the eternities are all in Him. All things are to be Christocentric. All things are to be summed up in Christ. It is not just life; acceptance; redemption and righteousness that are in Him, but the creation; our hope; spiritual blessings; consolation… and consummation – and Peace and Effectual Prayer and Strength and Riches are all “In Christ”.
God’s eternal purposes center in the Mew creation, the promises, and the one body. It includes our escape from condemnation and those that are the dead In Christ too – Yes! and His Body, the church, are one in Him – and we are all complete in Him: for in Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him, Who works all things according to the counsel of His will, that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory. Eph.1:11
IN HIM you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; IN WHOM also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.” Eph.1:13 Throughread more
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ Who has blessed us in the heavenly realms.. with every spiritual blessing – in Christ Jesus
The door of praise is flung open with a glimpse of the One Who has blessed us. The God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ is the One deserving of our praise. Paul is unlocking a treasure chest of jewels identifying the Father as the great Giver. Paul is also going to flood us with an astonishing array of the Father’s heavenly gifts.
We are standing on the threshold of a heavenly mystery – hid in the heart of God. We are about to come face to face with the riches of Christ’s amazing grace. We are about to embark on a journey revealing the riches of His heavenly glory. We are about to meet our gracious benefactor – the God and Father of Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father – for He has blessed US.
It was in the heart of the Father from before the world began to redeem mankind. The propitiation price for sin was agreed – in the eternal council chambers of God. This was according to the eternal purpose that God has realised in Christ Jesus our Lord. Ephesians 3:11
Grace was in the heart of the Creator when God set the ransom price for man’s sin. Grace was in mind of God when God laid on Him the iniquity of us all. Blessed be the God and Father – Who made Christ sin for our sake.
His Glory was in the mind of the Father when sin’s eternal sacrifice was selected. His Son was the one and only means to secure God’s satisfaction for sin’s payment. Blessed be the God and Father ..Who predestined us for adoption to sonship, through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will. Ephesians 1:3-5
God the Father is to be blessed for the blessings He has bestowed upon us all, andread more