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When Did the Church Body of Christ Begin?

September 6, 2017 Leave a comment

by Shawn Brasseaux

Was it Acts 2? Acts 9? Acts 13? Acts 18? Acts 28? Or later? In this Bible study, we hope to clear up the confusion surrounding this issue.

Nearly everyone in Christendom is convinced that Acts chapter 2 is “the birthday of the Church the Body of Christ” (here is a link to our study specially dedicated to refuting the “Acts 2” position, which is beyond the scope of this discussion). While there seems to be an anti-Acts-2 consensus within the so-called “grace movement,” there is often little clarity as to when the Church the Body of Christ did begin; that is, among grace believers, there is an overwhelming agreement that the Body of Christ did not begin in Acts chapter 2, but very few of these Christians can actually state with certainty when it did begin. Hence, the general term “mid-Acts dispensationalism” is applied, for some hold an “Acts 9” view, others believe in an “Acts 13” view, and still others an “Acts 18” view. There are even some who hold to “Acts 28” view, or something beyond Acts 28. It is very sad that many grace Christians seem to be guilty of being just as fragmented as the denominationalists they often deride. “When did the Church the Body of Christ begin?” is such a simple question with a simple answer, but it seems like very few are aware that God already settled the matter almost 2,000 years ago. Beloved, we grace believers must not allow denominationalism to divide us, lest we discredit ourselves and the message we so fervently claim to believe!

It is of utmost importance to our discussion to remember that the term “the Church the Body of Christ” is never found outside of Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon. James, Peter, and John never mentioned it in their epistles. In fact, Jesus Christ in His earthly ministry (recorded in Matthew through John) never mentioned it (the overwhelming Scriptural testimony is that Matthew 16:18 is not the Body of Christ). In his epistles, the Apostle Paul made over 20 references to “the Church the Body of Christ” by name (Romans 7:4; 1 Corinthians 12:4,5; 1 Corinthians 10:17; 1 Corinthians 12:12,13,14,15,27; Ephesians 1:22,23; Ephesians 2:16; Ephesians 3:6; Ephesians 4:4,12,16; Ephesians 4:16; Ephesians 5:23,30; Colossians 1:18,24; Colossians 2:19; Colossians 3:15). Save Paul, no other Bible writer uses the term “the Church the Body of Christ.” Since only Paul uses that term, he seems to know more about it than anyone else in Scripture, so should we not allow Paul to tell us when it began? Rather than blindly agreeing with a grace preacher or a grace church’s doctrinal statement, we need to believe what the Holy Spirit through Paul taught and believed concerning the beginning of the Church the Body of Christ.

1. PAUL’S SALVATION IS OUR “PATTERN”

The Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 1:15-16: “[15] This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. [16] Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.”

Notice the four very important words in the passage quoted above:

  1. “chief” — The word “chief” means “first, primary” (such as in Acts 14:12). For any “Greekophile,” the Greek word translated “chief” in 1 Timothy 1:16 is protos, meaning “beginning or foremost.” It does not mean “worst” as commonly thought.
  2. “first” — Means just what it says; it is the “earliest.”
  3. “pattern” — A “pattern” is “an example for others to follow.”
  4. “hereafter” — “Hereafter” is an adverb meaning, “from now on.”

These four terms are four different ways of saying the same thing—something new began with Paul. Paul was the “chief,” the “first,” the “pattern to them which should hereafter [that is, after Paul] believe on him [Jesus Christ] to life everlasting.” When Paul wrote, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief,” he was not saying that he was the worst of all sinners. In the context (look again at the four key terms highlighted above), what he meant was that he was the first of all sinners Jesus Christ saved. Yet, how could that be? What about the 12 apostles? Were they not sinners saved by God years prior to Paul? Yes, they were, but the manner by which Paul was saved, and the purpose to which Paul was saved, were different than those before him. Jesus Christ saved Paul and those after him with a special plan in mind.

The Scriptures could not be plainer that something new began with Paul’s salvation in Acts 9. Paul was the “first.” The first of what? The only sensible answer is the first member of the Church the Body of Christ (the only other group of believers God has in His Word is the redeemed nation Israel, and Israel is fallen at this point; the Church the Body of Christ had to be created in order to save Saul of Tarsus and make him Paul the Apostle). Paul was the first individual to be saved apart from Israel’s program. There had to have been a new program in Acts 9, otherwise Paul could not be saved unto eternal life (more on this later). The Holy Spirit said that Paul’s salvation is our “pattern.” Are we members of the nation Israel? No. Do we belong to Israel’s program? No. According to the Holy Spirit, and according to Paul himself, Paul was saved the same way we are—apart from Israel (1 Corinthians 15:8; Galatians 1:15) and apart from her program (1 Timothy 1:13-16 cf. Matthew 12:31-32; Romans 11:11-13; 1 Corinthians 1:17 cf. Matthew 28:19-20; Romans 6:14-15 cf. Matthew 5:17-19; et cetera).

2. PAUL COULD NOT BE SAVED IN ISRAEL’S PROGRAM

In Galatians 1:15-16, Paul writes, “[15] But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, [16] To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood:…” In 1 Corinthians 15:8, Paul wrote, “And last of all he [the resurrected Jesus Christ] was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.” Paul was not a part of Israel or her program. God “killed” Israel, as one would take the life of a pregnant woman, and He delivered her unborn child, in this case, Saul of Tarsus (Paul). (Look at the “stillborn” birth Job longed for in Job 3:16, “Or as an hidden untimely birth I had not been….”).

The Lord Jesus said to the nation Israel in Matthew 12:31-32: “[31] Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. [32] And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.”

Saul/Paul encouraged the murder of Stephen, and he was guilty of blaspheming against the Holy Ghost. After all, Jewish Saul was leading the world’s rebellion against Jesus Christ (see Acts 7:57-60; Acts 8:1-4; Acts 9:1-5; Acts 22:3-7; Acts 26:9-11; et cetera). Paul wrote that he was a “blasphemer” in 1 Timothy 1:13. Paul was saved, but he blasphemed against the Holy Spirit! So, how was Paul saved, and yet, how could it not break Jesus’ words in Matthew 12:31-32? Paul could not be saved in Israel’s program, for it would contradict Jesus’ words in Matthew 12:31-32; nevertheless, God opened our Dispensation of Grace, a program separate from Israel’s program, in Acts 9, and saved Saul/Paul. Saul/the Apostle Paul could only be saved if God interrupted Israel’s program with a new program, and if he was placed into a new group of believers. Paul was saved in our dispensation, not in Israel’s program; he was saved in the Church the Body of Christ, not in the nation Israel. Certainly, a new dispensation was in effect in Acts 9.

3. NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN JEW AND GENTILE IN PAUL’S MINISTRY, WHETHER DURING ACTS OR POST-ACTS

When understanding the beginning of the Church the Body of Christ, we need to determine what the Church the Body of Christ is. From Paul’s epistles, we learn that it is a spiritual, invisible body of believers in Christ, whether Jew or Gentile, who have trusted exclusively in Jesus Christ’s finished crosswork as sufficient payment for their sins (Paul’s Gospel, the Gospel of Grace of 1 Corinthians 15:3-4). Consider the following verses found in Paul’s epistles:

Romans 3:22: “Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:” (Written during Acts.)

1 Corinthians 12:13: “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.” (Written during Acts.)

Galatians 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Written during Acts.)

Galatians 6:15: “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.” (Written during Acts.)

Ephesians 2:11-17: “[11] Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; [12] 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: [13] But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. [14] For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; [15] Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; [16] And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: [17] And came and preached peace to you which were afar off [Gentiles], and to them that were nigh [Jews].” (Written after Acts.)

Colossians 3:10-11: “[10] And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: [11] Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.” (Written after Acts.)

The distinction between Jew and Gentile (“Greek” delineated the prominent Gentile nationality of that day, as in the Graeco-Roman Empire) was abolished with Paul’s ministry: “Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference” (Romans 3:22). Paul was “the apostle of the Gentiles” (Romans 11:13)—Paul wrote Romans during the Acts period. Israel had fallen back in Acts chapter 7 and was now “diminishing” (see Romans 11:11-12), so any lost Jews were technically Gentiles. In Acts chapter 15, Paul agreed to minister to the “heathen” (Galatians 2:9)—this would be anyone who was not a member of Israel’s little flock, her believing remnant. A Jew who had not trusted Jesus as Messiah was still just as much a “heathen”—a child of the Devil, and an enemy of the God of the Bible—as a lost non-Jew (Gentile) (see John 8:44, Acts 13:10, and Ephesians 2:1-3).

Paul, as Saul of Tarsus, had been one of those Christ-rejecting Jews, a heathen just as sinful before God as a Gentile. Paul’s ministry and message were directed toward any Christ-rejecting lost people—Jews or Gentiles. This distinction of Jew and Gentile being done away could only be possible if Israel’s program were fallen; the distinction between Jew and Gentile is always indicative of “time past” (Ephesians 2:11-12). The Church the Body of Christ had to have begun at the very beginning of Paul’s ministry, otherwise those to whom he ministered could not be saved. Yea, Paul himself could not be saved if a new program (the Dispensation of Grace) and a new agency (the Church the Body of Christ) had not begun back in Acts chapter 9.

4. PAUL’S INCLUSION IN THE RAPTURE

Paul considered himself to be a member of the Church the Body of Christ because he mentioned himself in reference to the Rapture. The Rapture of the Church the Body of Christ does not involve Israel or her prophetic program; the Rapture actually prevents our mystery program from overlapping with Israel’s program. Had the Body of Christ began after Paul was saved in Acts chapter 9—such as in Acts chapter 13, Acts chapter 18, or Acts chapter 28 or beyond—it would make no sense for Paul to be including himself in the Rapture. Paul had a hope to be included with the members of the Church the Body of Christ at the Rapture. He says “we” not “you” throughout 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18—Paul included himself in the Rapture, which is exclusively Body-of-Christ doctrine (verses 15 and 17). In fact, remember what Paul wrote, “For by one Spirit we are all baptized into one body…” (1 Corinthians 12:13)—Paul did not use the pronoun, “you,” indicating that he included himself in the Church the Body of Christ. Paul mentioned God blessing “us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3)—this is the Body of Christ doctrine, and when he wrote that God “blessed us with all spiritual blessings,” he included himself. “For we are members of his body” (Ephesians 5:30)—Paul included himself in the Body of Christ. To have the Body of Christ begin after Paul’s salvation is to ignore the many verses that indicate that Paul was a member of the Body of Christ.

5. THE DANGERS OF STARTING THE BODY OF CHRIST AFTER ACTS 9 (SUCH AS ACTS 13, ACTS 18, ACTS 28, OR BEYOND)

To begin the Church the Body of Christ at some time other than Acts chapter 9 is to ignore the foregoing verses and passages. Furthermore, a non-Acts-9 view of the Body of Christ will introduce increasing confusion into your Christian life and the lives of those around you. You lose Paul’s salvation as your pattern, you make your Christian life less clear, and you make the transitional period of Acts more confusing. Without going into too much detail, we will briefly comment about the “Acts 13,” “Acts 18,” and “Acts 28” positions:

ACTS 13.

This position is taken because Paul began his apostolic journeys at the beginning of this chapter. Furthermore, Acts 13:46 is used to justify this position: “Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.” Some use this verse to contend that Paul will go unto Gentiles from this time on, so the Gentile body of Christ could not begin until Acts chapter 13. Still, we understand that Paul was considered a Gentile because he had rejected Jesus Christ and was a “heathen” (Israel had fallen in Acts 7, see Point #2, “Paul could not be saved in Israel’s program”). Moreover, the Body of Christ had already begun with Paul’s salvation in Acts 9 (see previous comments). Had the Body of Christ begun in Acts chapter 13, Paul could not have been saved unto eternal life. The clear teaching of Acts 13:46 is this—it was Paul’s announcement to unbelieving Israel in Asia (modern-day Turkey) that God had now changed His dealings with mankind, that Israel was now fallen and diminishing. Nothing more.

ACTS 18.

Acts 18:8 is used to teach that the Gentile Body of Christ began in Acts 18: “And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean; from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.” Yet, by this time, Paul had already gone to Gentiles—he spoke with the pagan Greeks in Athens in Acts chapter 17. In Acts 18:8, Paul was not saying that the Body of Christ was now beginning. He was simply announcing in a new region (Europe) to unbelieving Israel that his ministry was amongst Gentiles. He was speaking to a new Jewish audience to inform them that JEHOVAH God had now changed His dealings with mankind, that Israel was now fallen and diminishing. To begin the Church the Body of Christ in Acts chapter 18 is to divorce ourselves from Paul’s earliest epistles—Thessalonians and Galatians.

ACTS 28.

Acts 28:28 is used to support the Acts 28 position: “Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it.” This does not say that God’s salvation will go to the Gentiles; by this time, we have seen that it has already gone to the Gentiles and is going to the Gentiles (recall our earlier comments). The Body of Christ had begun long before Paul announced those words in Acts 28:28—some 30 years earlier actually. Acts 28:28 was Paul speaking in Rome, the world’s capital at this time. “Acts 28” is a particularly dangerous position to take because it divorces you from Paul’s Acts epistles (Galatians, Thessalonians, Corinthians, and Romans) and makes you believe they are not to or about you—Paul never divides his epistles between one section of the Body of Christ in Acts and another section of the Body of Christ after Acts. The admonition in 2 Timothy 2:15 refers to all of the Bible, and does not teach “rightly dividing” Paul’s epistles.

Acts 13:46, Acts 18:8, and Acts 28:28 are not the beginning of the Body of Christ and, despite what some “grace” people may tell you, they are not indicative of such. These three verses should be considered one unit, for they comprise a three-fold announcement that the Apostle Paul made to unbelieving Israel in three separate regions. God was now going and had gone to the Gentiles, and Israel’s prophetic program was diminishing. By the time of Acts 28, that transition period was over. How clear, how simple!

CONCLUSION

We so-called “mid-Acts dispensationalists” agree that the Church the Body of Christ did not begin in Acts chapter 2 (as “traditional dispensationalism” teaches). Yet, there is often great confusion and doubt concerning when it did begin (hence the broad term “mid-Acts”). Some say it was Acts chapter 9, others Acts chapter 13, still others Acts chapter 18, and some even say Acts chapter 28 or later. Indeed, it sounds just as bad as denominationalism in Christendom! Mid-Acts dispensationalists often blame traditionalists (denominational people) for holding to the “traditions of men” to advance a particular church’s viewpoint regarding Scripture. Sadly, however, some so-called “mid-Acts dispensationalists” are just as guilty of this error. One glance at the “Acts 9/13/18/28” controversy demonstrates that religious tradition and preconceived notions often deceive, divide, and defeat us “mid-Acts dispensationalists” just as it does denominational Christendom.

Honestly, some years ago, when I first learned of the Acts 9/13/18/28 division within “grace circles,” I grew very discouraged. I had left my religious confusion in a denominational church behind, only to wind up with more confusion parading as “grace doctrine.” I wanted to know when the Church the Body of Christ began so that I could then determine what parts of the Bible on which to focus the most. It took me at least two or three years to finally learn the truth about the matter (during that time, many “grace people” were telling me different things, and they seemed to be just as confused as I was). When I finally studied the Scriptures on my own, I was thrilled to see how clear the Bible was regarding the issue. Acts chapter 9, the Apostle Paul’s salvation, was the beginning of the Church the Body of Christ; to say otherwise is to cause abounding confusion.

Dear friends, the fragmentation of grace believers regarding the beginning of the Body of Christ, often aids the Adversary’s cause in keeping God’s truth hidden. Having struggled with this issue myself, I can personally testify to that. Furthermore, this Acts 9/13/18/28 conflict affords our denominational critics another reason to undermine our stand on Paul’s special apostleship/ministry to us Gentiles and our stand in the Gospel the Lord Jesus Christ committed first to his trust. Thus, the question, “When did the Church the Body of Christ begin?,” is one of the most important questions the Bible student will face. He or she must answer it using Bible verses, not religious tradition (even if that church tradition parades under the guise of “grace doctrine!”).

If we are to be a pure church, we too must discard traditions, even if “grace” brethren believe and teach them! No question about it, the Apostle Paul was the first member of the Church the Body of Christ. It is not that difficult to understand unless we refuse to see it for sake of keeping our own traditions.

Source: https://ambassadorsfortherisenchristministries.org/2014/07/29/when-did-the-church-the-body-of-christ-begin/

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Tithes and Offerings in the Bible

February 27, 2017 Leave a comment

Dr. Mike Johnston

The English word tithe comes from the Hebrew “asar” and “ma’aser” and literally means (one) tenth. If you consider yourself a tither, you faithfully give God ten percent of all your gross income.

Now, as simple as it sounds, over the past 4 decades of Christian ministry I’ve found certain men arguing that tithing [1] is NOT applicable in this dispensation so we shouldn’t do it. Believe me when I tell you the spirit I’ve witnessed manifesting itself against tithing is both vigorous and vitriolic. Several years ago I was victimized by the wrath of a Jezebel spirited woman who didn’t tithe and became enraged at my teaching it. Under cover of darkness, she orchestrated a smear campaign involving phone calls and visits to successfully seduce half the members of our small soul winning church into not only believing her lies, but who willingly left with her. [2]

So where does this disagreement over tithing originate?

The main allegation against tithing is a half-truth masked in Biblical legitimacy. It argues that the tithe was included in the OT Mosaic Law, which disqualifies it under grace. While this sounds good to tightfisted brethren, it’s disingenuous at the core.

To begin with, our opponents don’t mention that tithing existed some 400 years BEFORE the Law. Nor do they acknowledge that both tithing and offerings existed under the Law so if you exclude one, you must exclude the other (Deut. 12:6; Mal. 3:8).

First Mention of Tithing

“And he gave him tithes of all” (Genesis 14:18-20). The First Mention Principle of hermeneutics, teaches us that the initial appearance of a subject in Scripture tells us how it stands connected in God’s mind throughout the remainder of the Bible. The first mention of tithing occurs when Abraham returned from battle enriched with goods captured from God’s enemies (Gen. 14:1-16) and was met by Melchizedek – a type of Christ.

“And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God. And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth: And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all” (Genesis 14:18-20).

Keep in mind Abraham was a man of faith, which God imputed to him as righteousness (Gen. 15:6). He didn’t respond like so many do today by asking, “Do I HAVE to tithe?” He instinctively knew God blessed him and he couldn’t wait to give ten percent to God’s man to use for God’s ministry.

Make no mistake friend, Abraham’s faith set priorities for his finances and provided a great example for all of his family as witnessed by his grandson Jacob (aka Israel) who continued the practice of giving ten percent (Gen 28:22).

The Tithe is Holy and it belongs to the Lord

“And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the LORD’S: it is holy unto the LORD” (Leviticus 27:30).

The Mosaic Law incorporated 613 commandments, judgments, and ordinances regulating every aspect of Israel’s existence. Tithes were paid on all income which included the produce of the land (Lev. 27:30), and all cattle in the fields (Lev. 27:32). Tithes paid the salaries of the Levitical priesthood (Num. 18:21; Num. 18:24; Neh. 10:37) who represented Israel before God.

Hear this inconvenient truth before you oppose tithing.

Moses taught that the tithe belonged to the Lord, and thus it was holy (Leviticus 27:30). If both of these are true – that the tithe is holy and belongs to the Lord – then by keeping that which is supposed to be set apart for Him because it belongs to Him – what does that make you?

It makes you a THIEF!

“Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings” (Malachi 3:8).

May I remind you that the dispensation of grace does not provide us with an enticement to sin nor does it remove accountability from believers in Christ for our actions. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad (2 Corinthians 5:10).

We are stewards of God’s gifts. Tithing provides faithful stewards a prescribed accountability and accommodation for returning to God a portion of His so great blessing. Therefore, since Abraham demonstrated 400 years before the Law that tithing is the revealed will of God regarding giving, the question is not, “should we tithe?” but rather are we going to obey the will of God as revealed in the Word of God regarding it? Under Moses God’s people were mandated by Law to tithe; under grace we are motivated by Love to tithe. Woe unto those in any dispensation promoting disobedience regarding the holiness and ownership of the tithe.

“Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation. Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it” (Malachi 3:9-10).

In closing, God’s Word is forever settled in Heaven (Psalm 119:89). That means that when Abraham gave his tithes, Malachi’s warning to those who weren’t tithing already existed in the eternal chambers of God’s mind. Read it again carefully because tithing isn’t under scrutiny here friend, obedience is.

[1] Most of the enemies of tithing I’ve known- and there have been a few- are stoic, stubborn and stingy; they generally don’t give anything to the Lord’s work except headaches and a hard time which they are lavish in bestowing.

[2] I give this as a warning to you. Be careful around people. It is uncanny how slick Satan is when plotting subversive activities. Unbeknownst to me, a sinister team was assembled and phone calls along with personal visits were made to our members trying to convince them I was a crook for teaching tithing. NO ONE receiving calls or visits ever warned me!

Prophecy and Mystery: Right Division Instruction Videos

September 7, 2016 Leave a comment

God’s primary division for studying His Word is hidden in plain sight in the opening verse of Scripture: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). Although Bible scholars like Darby, Scofield, Torrey and many others have recognized a number of dispensations two dominant programs God has used since the world began:

1. The Prophecy program for Israel predicting a coming earthly kingdom:

“As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began” (Luke 1:70; see Acts 3:21)).

2. The Mystery program for the Body of Christ promising a heavenly inheritance:

“Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began” (Romans 16:25).

Both of these programs – or dispensations – have separate participants, purposes and ordinances (Jer. 33:25); existing “since the world began” (Acts 3:21; Rom. 16:25), which more detail will be given later.

Now here’s the essence of right division: God’s plan is to rule earth for one thousand years. In the Providential panorama, all non-Pauline Scripture exists to explain or enhance the prophetic program for Israel leading to the coming King and earthly kingdom.

The Body of Christ is a temporary mystery God set in place at Israel’s rejection of the Messiah which produced Israel’s blindness, to remain here “until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in” (Rom. 11:25). At that point, the Body that appeared as a mystery (Rom. 16:25) will likewise disappear in a mystery (1 Cor. 15:51).

In short, the plan is underway and the Kingdom is still on!

RIGHT DIVISION INSTRUCTION VIDEOS

Simple right division: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6V73aTObIY

How to Understand the Bible: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZwOtKMO1h6s

Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0OEsGFOMBU&nohtml5=False

Rightly Dividing and Following Paul: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0abp15uLFT8

God’s Three Programs- Time past, but now, ages to come: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUhd5kMeHoQ

Complete Bible Overview in one hour: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MVmCChH0MJE

001 Introduction to Right Division: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qk0ie_Bzl1g

Hyper Dispensationalism: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpgxaj8sXnI

Knowing God’s Timeline: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-2pq8FRYKI8

Rightly Dividing the Word: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G4GQB4UOpMk

Rightly Dividing of the Dispensations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAy0G9x8EYI

Matthew 24 Explained Rightly Divided Proving PreTribulation Rapture: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxIUpkLi7Ck

The Grace Message: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kH8qy5NCwXw

Standing for the Truth of the Mystery is no easy task: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6UMauSZj-Vw

Thy Kingdom Come: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ii0y0BVpEUQ

Mystery Body of Christ – the Gospel of Grace: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRwStPIDPNs

Only Paul’s Gospel Saves: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcTI-T-SJAE

How to Read and Understand your Bible: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qAxBpRzhTko&nohtml5=False

What is Satan Thinking About Right Now? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWdrQ3yVHa4&nohtml5=False

Peter vs. Paul: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQhaOCKswnk

Video Teaching: Right Division – Prophecy and Mystery

Rightly Dividing Between God’s Two Overarching Programs:
Prophecy and Mystery (scroll down for videos)

Dr. Mike Johnston, Editor

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1).

God has two overarching programs discussed fully in the videos below: One from prophecy for Israel and earth, and the other from mystery for the Body of Christ and heaven. Both of these programs have separate participants, purposes and ordinances (Jer. 33:25); existing “since the world began” (Acts 3:21; Rom. 16:25).

In the Providential panorama, all Scripture exists to either explain or enhance the propheticprogram for Israel concerning earth, or the mystery program for the Body of Christ concerning heaven.

The Prophecy program:

“As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began” (Luke 1:70). “Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:21).

The Mystery program:

“Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began” (Romans 16:25).

Videos

How to Understand the Bible: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZwOtKMO1h6s

Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0OEsGFOMBU&nohtml5=False

Rightly Dividing and Following Paul: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0abp15uLFT8

God’s Three Programs- Time past, but now, ages to come: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUhd5kMeHoQ

Complete Bible Overview in one hour: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MVmCChH0MJE

Hyper Dispensationalism: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpgxaj8sXnI

Knowing God’s Timeline: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-2pq8FRYKI8

Rightly Dividing the Word: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G4GQB4UOpMk

Rightly Dividing of the Dispensations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAy0G9x8EYI

Matthew 24 Explained Rightly Divided Proving PreTribulation Rapture: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxIUpkLi7Ck

The Grace Message: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kH8qy5NCwXw

Standing for the Truth of the Mystery is no easy task: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6UMauSZj-Vw

Thy Kingdom Come: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ii0y0BVpEUQ

Mystery Body of Christ – the Gospel of Grace: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRwStPIDPNs

Only Paul’s Gospel Saves: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcTI-T-SJAE

How to Read and Understand your Bible: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qAxBpRzhTko&nohtml5=False

What is Satan Thinking About Right Now? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWdrQ3yVHa4&nohtml5=False

Peter vs. Paul: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQhaOCKswnk

Grace – Dr. Lewis Sperry Chafer, William R. Newell, and CI Scofield

October 7, 2015 Leave a comment

GRACE

Drs. Lewis Sperry Chafer, William R. Newell CI Scofield
Dr. Lewis Sperry Chafer wrote: Grace—a much misunderstood feature of God’s ways with lost men—is itself a revelation and all human hearts not having this truth of Scripture revealed will be unable to comprehend it or to adjust themselves to its provisions. Grace is not mercy or love. In Eph_2:4-5 these three doctrinal words appear severally and in their individual, specific manner: “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;).” Speaking first of mercy, it is defined as that compassion in God which moved Him to provide a Savior for the lost. If He had been able to save even one soul on the basis of His sovereign mercy alone, He could have saved every person on that basis and the death of Christ would have been rendered unnecessary. As for divine love, it is an emotion of infinite character, the motivating purpose back of all that God does in saving a soul. But since God is holy and righteous too and the sinner’s sins are an offense to Him, He might perfectly desire to save a soul and still be utterly helpless to do so in the light of the claims which divine righteousness make against the sinner. Not until those claims are met can God’s infinite love realize its desire. Therefore, to come now to the third definition, grace is what God may be free to do and indeed what He does accordingly for the lost after Christ has died on behalf of them. “By grace are ye saved” (Eph_2:8). When thus released from His holy demands against the sinner by the sacrificial death of Christ, and that sacrifice is accepted intelligently, the love of God will never be satisfied until He has done all He can do for such a one. The greatest thing God can do, reverently speaking, is to make someone like His Son. Such, then, will be the destiny of everyone who believes (Rom_8:29; 1Jn_3:2). Since grace only represents what God can and will do for those who trust the Savior, it must needs function apart from all human works or cooperation. It calls for no more than confidence in the only One who can save.

The Scriptures assign to the operating of grace the only salvation now offered to sinful men. God’s grace also provides security for the saved one. This is done by continuing the grace work of God with the individual in spite of his imperfections. Grace also undertakes to direct the saved one in the new manner of his daily life after he has been saved. A new motive for this is set up by the fact that the one saved was perfected forever in the sight of God as being in Christ, therefore partaking of His merit and standing forever. Nothing of merit need be added to that which is perfected forever (cf. Joh_1:16; Rom_5:1; Rom_8:1; Heb_10:14). Hence the obligation to gain merit is removed completely, and the whole law system with its merit ceases to be applicable to the saved one under grace. He is no longer under law, but under grace (Rom_6:14). The new problem becomes that of how a perfected person should walk in this world. Grace teaches the saved one concerning his holy walk in daily life. The standard is as high as heaven itself. God requires, and with reason, that the saved one, by reason of being a citizen of heaven, should live according to the standards of heaven (cf. Joh_13:34; Eph_4:1, Eph_4:30; 1Th_5:19). [1] 

GRACE: GOD’S UNMERITED FAVOR

“Grace” is so much of a characteristic of God (like His love), that human words do not adequately express its meaning.

Romans 3:24 begins: “BEING JUSTIFIED FREELY BY HIS GRACE”

Some have defined “Grace” as “Undeserved Mercy”, and this is true. However, all mercy is undeserved; that’s the meaning of mercy. GRACE is more than mercy. Mercy gets a criminal off the hook and out of jail, but GRACE pays the debt of the criminal and sets him free to enjoy the good life.

When we say that GRACE is “Unmerited Favor”, we are saying that this favor cannot be earned. It’s not just that you don’t have to earn it. The fact is, you cannot earn it. Since we are all sinners, there is nothing that we can do to gain God’s favor. Even if you did good works continuously from here on out, and sacrificed all your time to help others, and did great and wonderful things 24 hours a day for the rest of your life to please God, God still would not accept you or your efforts because He is Holy and you are still a sinner. You cannot work off your sins.

God’s salvation is not merited, it is a GIFT of God! – See Ephesians 2:8, 9. The word for “GRACE” (in the Greek) is “Charis.” The word for “GIFT” (in the Greek) is “Charisma.” It is easily seen that the very root meaning of the word GRACE is GIFT.

Romans 11:6 is a verse that clearly contrasts “WORKS” with “GRACE.” It does that because they are exact opposites. A gift is something given freely, but work is something that you do to earn a wage. Romans 6:23 tells us what wages we have coming to us: “FOR THE WAGES OF SIN IS DEATH, BUT THE GIFT OF GOD IS ETERNAL LIFE, THROUGH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD.”

We really don’t want what our sins have earned for us. Rather we want the gift that comes from God through Christ. Since we began to study Romans 3:21-24, we have seen that God’s righteousness has been made available to all of mankind today, but it is only imputed to those who believe. Then God, upon that faith, justifies or declares the sinner righteous. Now we learn that all of this is done “FREELY BY HIS GRACE.” What a wonderful God we have!

Ephesians 3:1-5 teaches us that God’s message of GRACE was first revealed to Paul. It was through the Apostle Paul that God’s Word of GRACE was preached to the Gentiles.

Galatians 1:13-16 gives testimony that God’s GRACE was what changed Paul from being the number one enemy of Christ into Christ’s number one preacher among the Gentiles.

I Timothy 1:11-16 explains why God used Paul for this job of making His GRACE known. It was because Paul’s conversion is the pattern of grace. Paul deserved the most severe punishment of hell, but by the grace of God he was saved and given the right (as all believers have today), to sit with Christ in heavenly places – (see Ephesians 2:6).

We have said: “Mercy gets the criminal off the hook, but grace pays his debt”. Romans 3:24 goes on to tell us that the reason God is free to deal with mankind today in GRACE is because of what Jesus Christ accomplished for us on the Cross. The Lord Jesus Christ paid our debt of sin and, in receiving Him, we are set free to enjoy God’s love and to live in His favor!

PRACTICAL POINT: Everything required for my Salvation has been supplied by God. Salvation is the work of God in my behalf. Now, to get that point through our stubborn thick human heads, we are told that justification is unmerited and undeserved on our part. On the other hand, it is given freely to us on God’s part. It could not be made any clearer. Salvation comes to us, not on the basis of works, but on the basis of a free gift from God.

Since I am now in God’s favor apart from any good works of my own, then– if I happen to do a bad deed– it does no change God’s attitude toward me.

Before you jump to any conclusion, please understand; this does not mean that a believer is free to go out and continue sinning. Contrary to popular opinion–but in accordance with Scripture–as a Believer dwells upon this grace of God in which he now stands, it will motivate him to do good works! – see Titus 2:11, 12. [2]

The Nature of Grace
Dr. William R. Newell

  1. Grace is God acting freely, according to His own nature — as Love; with no promises or obligations to fulfill; and acting of course, righteously — in view of the cross.
    2. Grace, therefore, is uncaused in the recipient: its cause lies wholly in the GIVER, in GOD.
    3. Grace, also is sovereign. Not having debts to pay, or fulfilled conditions on man’s part to wait for, it can act toward whom, and how, it pleases. It can, and does, often, place the worst deservers in the highest favors.
    4. Grace cannot act where there is either desert or ability: Grace does not help — it is absolute, it does all.
    5. There being no cause in the creature why Grace should be shown, the creature must be brought off from trying to give cause to God for His Grace.
    6. The discovery by the creature that he is truly the object of Divine grace, works the utmost humility: for the receiver of grace is brought to know his own absolute unworthiness, and his complete inability to attain worthiness: yet he finds himself blessed — on another principle, outside of himself!
    7. Therefore, flesh has no place in the plan of Grace. This is the great reason why Grace is hated by the proud natural mind of man. But for this very reason, the true believer rejoices! For he knows that “in him, that is, in his flesh, is no good thing”; and yet he finds God glad to bless him, just as he is!The Place of Man under Grace:

    1. He has been accepted in Christ, who is his standing!
    2. He is not “on probation.”
    3. As to his life past, it does not exist before God: he died at the Cross, and Christ is his life.
    4. Grace, once bestowed, is not withdrawn: for God knew all the human exigencies (needs) beforehand: His action was independent of them, not dependent upon them.
    5. The failure of devotion does not cause the withdrawal of bestowed grace (as it would under law). For example: the man in I Cor. 5.1-5; and also those in 11.30-32, who did not “judge” themselves, and so were “judged by the Lord, — that they might not be condemned with the world”!

    The Proper Attitude of Man under Grace:

    1. To believe, and to consent to be loved while unworthy, is the great secret.
    2. To refuse to make “resolutions” and “vows”; for that, is to trust in the flesh.
    3. To expect to be blessed, though realizing more and more lack of worth.
    4. To testify of God’s goodness, at all times.
    5. To be certain of God’s future favor; yet to be ever more tender in conscience toward Him.
    6. To rely on God’s chastening hand as a mark of His kindness.
    7. A man under grace, if like Paul, has no burden regarding himself; but many about others.

    Things Which Gracious Souls Discover:

    1. To “hope to be better” is to fail to see yourself in Christ only.
    2. To be disappointed with yourself, is to have believed in yourself.
    3. To be discouraged is unbelief, — as to God’s purpose and plan of blessing for you.
    4. To be proud, is to be blind! For we have no standing before God, in ourselves.
    5. The lack of Divine blessing, therefore, comes from unbelief, and not from failure of devotion.
    6. Real devotion to God arises, not from man’s will to show it; but from the discovery that blessing has been received from God while we were yet unworthy and undevoted.
    7. To preach devotion first, and blessing second, is to reverse God’s order, and preach law, not grace. The Law made man’s blessing depend on devotion; Grace confers undeserved, unconditional blessing: our devotion may follow, but does not always do so, — in proper measure.

Studies in Deuteronomy
by William R. Newell

Instead of blessing the people altogether on the ground of promise, that is altogether in view of Christ’s coming work, He says “If you obey My law, I will bless you.” Obedience first, then blessing, is the order under the law. There is nothing for the people to fall back on, except their own obedience now. They may indeed remember that they are God’s chosen people, according to His covenant with the fathers: but the law has come in since those days, and they are under it. So Moses insists, in Deuteronomy, on their obedience as the condition of everything, as they are about to enter their inheritance.

Now the position of the Christian is entirely different. It is of absolute importance that we understand this. Thousands upon thousands of Christians today are in bondage because they do not see the essential difference between our position and that of Israel under the law. Now, Israel depended upon their own obedience to get their blessings in the land. Christians get their blessings because Christ obeyed in their stead. This gives them rest of heart, so that they have leisure to love God for His own sake, and learn to delight in His will.

But there are hardly any Christians who dare believe this. That is, they cannot apprehend such grace as this. They think, of course, that their blessings depend upon their faithfulness, their earnestness, their consecration, etc. But, this is not to be under grace (where God says we are Rom. 4:14) but under law; that is, under responsibility to do, in order to have, which is the order of the law, not that of grace.

Grace says, “You have been blessed already, in Christ Jesus, with all spiritual blessings.” Eph. 1:3 The only obedience that pleases God now, is the obedience of FAITH, which enters boldly in, and appropriates these things that Christ’s obedience unto death has secured for us.
Now I know someone will read these words who will say: ”Yes ‘but we must do our part’, ere we can claim or enjoy these spiritual blessings.” The which shows that such a person is at heart, a miserable legalist to this day believing neither that Christ is the end of the law, nor that His work has really made these heavenly things actually ours. This is the hellish insult that unbelief ever flings into the face of God, that His Word is not good for the exact face of it.

The primary reason Christians today are living such unhappy, such empty, such weak and fruitless lives, is not (I dare to say it), that they are “not consecrated,” “not surrendered,” “not self-denying,” “not obedient,” not this and that and the other that the thousand and one preachers of legal holiness are complaining — not these at all: the trouble, the one great trouble, is, Christians do not believe that they are free from the law, in Christ Jesus; and that they already have the glorious blessings they are seeking after, and need only claim them, to enjoy them. People dare not believe that Christ has done all the obeying and fulfilling for them, and that “their part” is simply to enter in and enjoy the infinite spoils of Christ’s victory.

Someone needs to die for this great truth in their own day, as Paul died for it once and all the martyrs since. God bring it back to the church, this glorious truth of grace! “By the obedience of the ONE, the many are made righteous,” and are blessed for His sake alone. Rom 5 Eph 3.

GRACE: Old Scofield Bible Summary [3]

(1) Grace is “the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man. . . Not by works of righteousness which we have done” (Tit_3:4); (Tit_3:5).

It is, therefore, constantly set in contrast to law, under which God demands righteousness from man, as, under grace, he gives righteousness to man (Rom_3:21); (Rom_3:22); (Rom_8:4); (Phm_3:9). Law is connected with Moses and works; grace with Christ and faith; (Joh_1:17); (Rom_10:4-10). Law blesses the good; grace saves the bad; (Exo_19:5); (Eph_2:1-9). Law demands that blessings be earned; grace is a free gift; (Deu_28:1-6); (Eph_2:8); (Rom_4:4); (Rom_4:5).

(2) As a dispensation, grace begins with the death and resurrection of Christ (Rom_3:24-26); (Rom_3:4); (Rom_3:24); (Rom_3:25). The point of testing is no longer legal obedience as the condition of salvation, but acceptance or rejection of Christ, with good works as a fruit of salvation, (Joh_1:12); (Joh_1:13); (Joh_3:36); (Mat_21:37); (Mat_22:24); (Joh_15:22); (Joh_15:25); (Heb_1:2); (1Jo_5:10-12). The immediate result of this testing was the rejection of Christ by the Jews, and His crucifixion by Jew and Gentile (Act_4:27). The predicted end of the testing of man under grace is the apostasy of the professing church.

[1] Lewis Sperry Chafer, SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY Doctrinal Summarization

[2] From Dictionary of the Gospel: http://www.graceimpact.org/GHBM1/frams3.htm

[3] Old Scofield Study Bible. We have these available in bonded leather (KJV), to ship for a gift to PMI of $30. Stamps are welcome.

Thank you to all who have asked. We will gladly accept stamps, printer and copy paper, KJV Bibles (pref Old Scofield),
Bible reference and enrichment books (we send to chaplains for prison libraries)
and of course money donations- check, money order Payable to PMI or
Pay Pal (which is a snap to set up in 5 minutes or less).

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR WHATEVER HELP YOU CAN PROVIDE.

33 Riches of Grace Upon Believing- Dr. Lewis Sperry Chafer

Chafer, Dr. Lewis Sperry

The 33 Riches of Grace in Christ Jesus

(33 Divine Accomplishments in and for the Sinner

upon Believing on the Lord Jesus Christ)

by Lewis S. Chafer

In considering the Bible doctrine of salvation it is important to distinguish between those things which have already been done for all, and those things which are done for the individual at the instant he believes. The sum total of that which has been done for both classes constitutes “the riches of grace in Christ Jesus.” But the things divinely accomplished at the instant of believing alone form that aspect of salvation which is already accomplished in and for the one who believes. This is salvation in its past tense aspect, i.e., salvation from the guilt, penalty and condemnation of sin. This portion of the doctrine of salvation, like the other tense aspects, includes only what God is said to do for man, and nothing whatsoever that man is said to do for God, or for himself. There is an important distinction to be made, as well, between the drawing, convincing work of the Spirit for the unsaved when He convinces of sin, righteousness and judgment, and “the things that accompany salvation.” The former is the work of God in bringing the unsaved who are blinded by Satan (2 Cor. 4:3,4) to an intelligent decision for Christ; the latter is the outworking of that salvation after they believe. So, also, there is a difference to be noted between the work of God in the past tense aspect of salvation and the growth and development of the one who is thus saved. He is to “grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” He is to be “changed from glory to glory.” These, too, are divine undertakings for the individual, and are in no way a part of that which is wrought of God the moment one believes.

Most of the great doctrinal epistles of the New Testament may be divided into a general two-fold division: namely, first, that which represents the work of God already accomplished for the believer, and, second, that which represents the life and work of the believer for God. The first eight chapters of Romans contain the whole doctrine of salvation in its past and present tense aspects: the last section, beginning with chapter twelve (chapters nine to eleven being parenthetical in the present purpose of God for Israel) is an appeal to the saved one to live as it becomes one thus saved. This section opens with the words, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service” (Rom. 12:1). Such a manner of life is naturally to be expected from the one who has been divinely changed. It is a “reasonable service.” So the entire closing section of Romans is an exhortation to that manner of life befitting one who is saved.

The first three chapters of Ephesians present the work of God for the individual in bringing him to his exalted heavenly position in Christ Jesus. Not one exhortation will be found in this section. The helpless sinner could do nothing to further such an undertaking. The last section, beginning with chapter 4, is altogether an appeal for a manner of life befitting one raised to such an exalted heavenly position. The first verse, as in the opening words of the hortatory section of Romans, is an epitome of all that follows: “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called.”

The first two chapters of Colossians reveal the glory of the Son of God and the believer’s present position as identified with Him in resurrection life. This is followed by the two closing chapters, which are an appeal that may again be briefly condensed into the first two verses of the section: “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth” (Col. 3:1-2).

It is important to note the divine order in presenting these most vital issues. The positions to which the believer is instantly lifted by the power and grace of God are always mentioned first and without reference to any human merit or promises. Following this is the injunction for a consistent life in view of the divine blessing.

It is obvious that no attempt to imitate this manner of life could result in such exalted positions; but the positions, when wrought of God, create an entirely new demand in life and conduct (in the Word of God these demands are never laid upon unregenerate men). Such is always the order in grace. First, the unmerited divine blessing; then the life lived in the fullness of power which that blessing provides. Under the law varying blessings were given at the end according to the merit: under grace full measure of transformation is bestowed at the beginning and there follows an appeal for a consistent daily life. It is the divine purpose that a Christian’s conduct should be inspired by the fact that he is already saved and blessed with all the riches of grace in Christ Jesus, rather than by the hope that an attempted imitation of the Christian standard of conduct will result in salvation.

In turning to the Scriptures to discover what it has pleased God to reveal of His saving work in the individual at the instant he believes, it will be found that there are at least thirty-three distinct positions into which such an one is instantly brought by the sufficient operation of the infinite God. All of these transformations are superhuman, and, taken together, form that part of salvation which is already the portion of every one who has believed. Of these thirty-three positions at least five important things may be said:

First, They are not experienced. They are facts of the newly created life out of which most precious experiences may grow. For example, justification is never experienced; yet it is a new eternal fact of divine life and relationship to God. A true Christian is more than a person who feels or acts on a certain high plane: he is one who, because of a whole inward transformation, normally feels and acts in all the limitless heavenly association with his Lord.

Second, The Christian positions are not progressive. They do not grow, or develop, from a small beginning. They are as perfect and complete the instant they are possessed as they ever will be in the ages to come. To illustrate, sonship does not grow into fuller sonship, even though a son may be growing. An old man is no more the son of his earthly father at the day of his death than he was at the day of his birth.

Third, These positions are in no way related to human merit. It was while we were yet sinners that Christ died for the ungodly. There is a legitimate distinction to be made between good sons and bad sons; but both equally possess sonship if they are sons at all. God is said to chasten His own because they are sons, but certainly not that they may become sons. Human merit must be excluded. It cannot be related to these divine transformations of grace; nor could they abide eternally the same if depending by the slightest degree on the finite resources. They are made to stand on the unchanging Person and merit of the eternal Son of God. There are other and sufficient motives for Christian conduct than the effort to create such eternal facts of the divine life. The Christian is “accepted (now and forever) in the beloved.”

Fourth, Every position is eternal by its very nature., The imparted life of God is as eternal in its character as its Fountain Head. Hence the Word of His grace: “I give unto them eternal life and they shall never perish.” The consciousness and personal realization of such relationship to God may vary with the daily walk of the believer; but the abiding facts of the new being are never subject to change in time or eternity.

Fifth, These positions are known only through a divine revelation. They defy human imagination, and since they cannot be experienced their reality can be entered into only by believing the Word of God. These eternal riches of grace are for the lowest sinner who will only believe.

That God may in some measure be glorified, some, if not all, of these positions are here given. “The half has never been told.” The reader is humbly invited to remember that these things are now true of each one who believes, and if there should be the slightest doubt as to whether he has believed, that question can be forever settled even before the following pages are read:

  1. In the Eternal Plan of God:
  1. Foreknown

For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Rom. 8:29.

Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. 1 Pet. 1:2.

  1. Elect [of God]

Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God. 1 Thess. 1:4.

Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. 1 Pet. 1:2.

Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. Rom. 8:33.

Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering. Col. 3:12.

Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness. Titus 1:1.

  1. Predestinated

In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: Eph. 1:11.

For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. Rom. 8:29-30.

Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will. Eph. 1:5.

  1. Chosen

For many are called, but few are chosen. Matt. 22:14.

To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious. 1 Pet. 2:4.

  1. Called

Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it. 1 Thess. 5:24.

  1. Reconciled:
  1. Reconciled by God.

And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. 2 Cor. 5:18-19.

And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. Col. 1:20.

  1. Reconciled to God.

For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. Rom. 5:10.

Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. 2 Cor. 5:20.

III. Redeemed:

  1. Redeemed by God.

In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins. Col. 1:14.

Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers. 1 Pet. 1:18.

Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. Rom. 3:24.

  1. Out of All Condemnation.

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Rom. 8:1.

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. John 5:24.

But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. 1 Cor. 11:32.

He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. John 3:18.

  1. Related to God Through a Propitiation (the satisfaction of God’s holiness):

And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. 1 John 2:2.

Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. Rom. 3:24-26.

  1. All Sins Covered by Atoning Blood:

Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. 1 Pet. 2:24.

Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification. Rom. 4:25.

  1. Vitally Joined together with Christ for Judgment of the “Old Man” Unto a New Walk:
  1. “Crucified with Christ.”

Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. Rom. 6:6.

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. Gal. 2:20.

  1. “Dead with Christ.”

Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him. Rom. 6:8.

Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. 1 Pet. 2:24.

  1. Buried with Christ.

Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. Rom. 6:4.

Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. Col. 2:12.

  1. Raised with Christ to Walk by a New Life Principle.

Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. Rom. 6:4.

If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Col. 3:1.

VII. Free from the Law:

  1. “Dead to the Law.”

Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God. Rom. 7:4.

  1. “Delivered from the Law.”

But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter. Rom. 7:6.

But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. Gal. 3:25.

For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. Rom. 6:14.

For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious. 2 Cor. 3:11.

VIII. Children of God:

  1. “Born Again.”

Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. John 3:7.

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name. John 1:12.

Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. 1 Pet. 1:23.

  1. “Quickened,” or Made Alive.

And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins. Eph. 2:1.

And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses. Col. 2:13.

  1. “Sons of God.”

Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. 1 John 3:2.

And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty. 2 Cor. 6:18.

For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. Gal. 3:26.

  1. “A New Creature.”

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 2 Cor. 5:17.

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. Gal. 6:15.

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Eph. 2:10.

  1. “Regeneration.”

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost. Titus 3:5.

Jesus saith to him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit: and ye are clean, but not all. John 13:10.

And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Cor. 6:11.

  1. Adopted (placed as adult sons):

For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. Rom. 8:15.

See also a future adoption:

And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. Rom. 8:23.

  1. Acceptable to God by Jesus Christ:
  1. Made the Righteousness of God in Christ.

Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference. Rom. 3:22.

But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption. 1 Cor. 1:30.

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2 Cor. 5:21.

And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith. Phil. 3:9.

  1. Sanctified Positionally [positionally set apart in Christ].

But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption. 1 Cor. 1:30.

And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Cor. 6:11.

(This is in no way to be confused with experiential sanctification as mentioned in John 17:17, or the final perfection of the believer as mentioned in Eph. 5:27 and 1 John 3:3.)

  1. “Perfected for ever.”

For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. Heb. 10:14.

  1. Made accepted in the Beloved.

To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. Eph. 1:6.

Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. 1 Pet. 2:5.

  1. Made Meet [Qualified].

Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light. Col. 1:12.

  1. Justified:

Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Rom. 5:1.

Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. Rom. 3:24.

Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. Rom. 8:30.

And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Cor. 6:11.

That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. Titus 3:7.

XII. Forgiven All Trespass:

In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins. Col. 1:14.

And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses. Col. 2:13.

Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. Col. 3:13.

In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace. Eph. 1:7.

And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. Eph. 4:32.

(A distinction is necessary here between the complete and abiding judicial forgiveness and the oft-repeated forgiveness within the family of God. See 1 John 1:9 [which is for restoring broken fellowship; not for regaining salvation.])

XIII. Made Nigh:

But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. Eph. 2:13.

(With this, there is a corresponding experience; see James 4:8 and Hebrews 10:22.)

XIV. Delivered from the Powers of Darkness:

Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son. Col. 1:13.

And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. Col. 2:13-15.

  1. Translated into the Kingdom:

Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son. Col. 1:13.

XVI. On the Rock Christ Jesus:

For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 1 Cor. 3:11.

And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone. Eph. 2:20.

Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God. 2 Cor. 1:21.

XVII. A Gift from God the Father to Christ:

I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word … And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled … Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word. John 17:6,11-12,20.

My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. John 10:29.

XVIII. Circumcised in Christ:

In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ. Col. 2:11.

For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. Phil. 3:3.

But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God. Rom. 2:29.

XIX. Partakers of the Holy and Royal Priesthood:

  1. “Holy Priesthood.”

Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. 1 Pet. 2:5.

  1. “Royal Priesthood.”

But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light. 1 Pet. 2:9.

And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. Rev. 1:6.

  1. A Chosen Generation and a Peculiar People:

But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light. 1 Pet. 2:9.

Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Titus 2:14.

XXI. Having Access to God:

For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Eph. 2:18.

By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Rom. 5:2.

Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Heb. 4:14-16.

Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh. Heb. 10:19-20.

XXII. Within the “Much More” Care of God:

Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. Rom. 5:9-10.

  1. Objects of His Love.

But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us. Eph. 2:4.

And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. Eph. 5:2.

  1. Objects of His Grace.

(1) For salvation: For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. Eph. 2:8.

(2) For security: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Rom. 5:2.

(3) For service: But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Eph. 4:7.

(4) For instruction: For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world. Titus 2:11-12.

  1. Objects of His Power.

And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power. Eph. 1:19.

For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. Phil. 2:13.

  1. Objects of His Faithfulness.

Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. Heb. 13:5.

Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. Phil. 1:6.

  1. Objects of His Peace.

And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. Col. 3:15.

  1. Objects of His Consolation [Comfort].

Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace… 2 Thess. 2:16.

  1. Objects of His Intercession.

Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. Heb. 7:25.

Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Rom. 8:34.

For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us. Heb. 9:24.

XXIII. His Inheritance:

The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints. Eph. 1:18.

XXIV. Our Inheritance:

To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you. 1 Pet. 1:4.

Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory. Eph. 1:14.

Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ. Col. 3:24.

And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance. Heb. 9:15.

XXV. A Heavenly Association:

And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus. Eph. 2:6.

  1. Partners with Christ in Life.

When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. Col. 3:4.

And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. 1 John 5:11-12.

  1. Partners with Christ in Position.

And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus. Eph. 2:6.

  1. Partners with Christ in Service.

God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. 1 Cor. 1:9.

For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building. 1 Cor. 3:9.

We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain. 2 Corinthians 6:1.

Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. 2 Cor. 5:20.

But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses. 2 Cor. 6:4.

Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life. 2 Corinthians 3:6.

Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart. 2 Corinthians 3:3.

  1. Partners with Christ in Suffering.

If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us. 2 Tim. 2:12.

For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake. Phil. 1:29.

For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. 1 Pet. 2:20.

Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. 1 Pet. 4:12-13.

That no man should be moved by these afflictions: for yourselves know that we are appointed thereunto. 1 Thess. 3:3.

For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. Rom. 8:18.

Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church. Col. 1:24.

XXVI. Heavenly Citizens:

For our conversation [citizenship] is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. Phil. 3:20.

Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God. Eph. 2:19.

But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels. Heb. 12:22.

Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven. Luke 10:20.

XXVII. Of the Family and Household of God:

Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God. Eph. 2:19.

Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named. Eph. 3:15.

As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith. Gal. 6:10.

XXVIII. Light in the Lord:

For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light. Eph. 5:8.

But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. 1 Thess. 5:4.

XXIX. Vitally United to the Father, Son, and Spirit:

  1. In God.

Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Thess. 1:1.

  1. In Christ.

At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you. John 14:20.

(a) A member in His Body: For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. 1 Cor. 12:13.

(b) A branch in the Vine: I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. John 15:5.

(c) A stone in the building: Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit. Eph. 2:19-22.

(d) A sheep in His flock: My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. John 10:27-29.

(e) A part of His bride: Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. Eph. 5:25-27.

(f) A priest of the kingdom of priests: Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. Rev. 20:6.

(g) A saint of the “chosen generation”: But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light. 1 Pet. 2:9.

  1. “In the Spirit.”

But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. Rom. 8:9.

XXX. Blessed with the “First-Fruits” and the “Earnest” of the Spirit:

  1. “Born of the Spirit.”

That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. John 3:6.

  1. Baptized with the Spirit.

For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. 1 Cor. 12:13.

  1. Indwelt by the Spirit.

What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 1 Cor. 6:19.

Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 1 Cor. 2:12.

But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified. John 7:39.

And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. Rom. 5:5.

But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. Rom. 8:9.

Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God. 2 Cor. 1:21.

And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Gal. 4:6.

And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us. 1 John 3:24.

  1. Sealed with the Spirit.

And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Eph. 4:30.

Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts. 2 Cor. 1:22.

  1. Anointed with the Spirit.

Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God. 2 Cor. 1:21.

But ye have an unction [annointing] from the Holy One, and ye know all things. 1 John 2:20.

XXXI. Glorified:

Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. Rom. 8:30.

XXXII. Complete in Him:

And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power. Col. 2:10.

XXXIII. Possessing Every Spiritual Blessing:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ. Eph. 1:3.

Such is the work which is now fully accomplished in and for the lowliest sinner who has believed on the Lord Jesus Christ. It is all superhuman and God alone could do it: nay, if man could even have any part in that work it would at that point of contact be imperfect, and therefore be blasted and ruined forever. These marvels of grace constitute that “good work” which He has but begun in those who trust Him. To this much more is yet to be added according to Phil. 1:6. “He that hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” The “riches of grace” are the beginning; the final presentation in glory in the likeness of Christ will be the completion. Such a final perfection and such an eternal being is the greatest divine undertaking for the one who has been lost in sin. Nothing less than this would satisfy the infinite love of God. That He might thus be free to satisfy His boundless love for us He met all the issues of sin for a lost and ruined world, and so perfectly has He wrought that man need now but believe and thus receive the bounty of His grace. It is “grace [reigning] through righteousness.” “For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all. O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.” Rom. 11:32-36.

Grace Gospel Books (Downloadable)- Stam, Baker & more

January 22, 2013 Leave a comment
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