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Posts Tagged ‘Sustainer’

The Wednesday Word: Jesus, the Unabridged Version of God

One of the reasons God became a man was to destroy Satan and open the way to eternal life. Nobody but God was qualified for this task because none but the Almighty was strong or wise enough to accomplish such a feat.

The Mighty God, our Redeemer, came to undo and destroy the shocking distress that Satan had exacted upon us … and did so by becoming human.

Why human? Why did He not become a super angel?

He became human because it was the human race that Satan had destroyed in the Fall. It was thus, as a true human, the eternal Word was born. In His doing and dying, He received the full onslaught of Satan and put him away by His great sacrifice at Calvary (Colossians 2:15).

To paraphrase Anselm (AD 1033-AD 1109),

“And so also was it proper that the devil, who was man’s tempter, and had conquered him when he ate of the tree, should be conquered by another man as he suffered on the tree.”

Anselm: Cur Deus Homo: Chapter 3

May we always be thrilled the boundless Gospel truth of the incarnation.

‘He left His heavenly crown,

His glory laid aside.

On wings of love came down,

And wept, and bled, and died.

What He endured no tongue can tell,

To save our souls from death and hell’.

As true believers we hold, defend and propagate the truth of the full revelation of the Almighty God in Christ alone.

From all eternity the Lord Jesus Christ is the eternally, self-existent One who was and is and is to come. He is Yahweh, the great I Am, the Alpha and the Omega, the Word made flesh. He was and is God. His divine nature was unborrowed, underived, andunconferred.

It is Jesus, the Lord from heaven, who is above all (John 3:31).

He has the fullness of the Godhead bodily (Colossians 2:9).

He has and is both the wisdom and the power of God (1 Corinthians 1:24)

In Him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Colossians 2:3).

As Gospel-centered believers, it is our privilege to propagate the message that the Lord Jesus possesses all that God is. If we want to know how God acts, then we study Jesus and see what He has done. Jesus is the unabridged version of God: He is the very mystery of God! Jesus is the full and accurate interpretation of the mind of God. To meet Him is to meet God. To be saved by Him is to be saved by God. He is the final word from God to man (Hebrews 1:1-3).

It should be of no surprise, therefore, that Christ is still despised and rejected by men.

The radical Muslims, as they vie for world domination,witness against His deity.

The radical Hindus think nothing of attacking Christ’s followers in India, Nepal and other places.

The Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses deny that He is the Mighty God.

Even, in many Christian circles, Christ’s true identity has become blurred.

Who then will stand up for Jesus in this generation?

Will we?

Will you?

As for me and my house, we intend to make more than much of Jesus. We appreciate what John Newton stated; He said,

“I am well satisfied it will not be a burden to me at the hour of death, nor be laid to my charge at the day of judgment, that I have thought too highly of Jesus, expected too much from him myself, or labored too much in commending and setting him forth to others, as the Alpha and Omega, the true God and eternal life.

– John Newton (1725-1807), English minister & author of the hymn “Amazing Grace”

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

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A definition of Providence refuting the erroneous dogmas of Philosophers

calvin.jpg_7MA21605611-0015A definition of Providence refuting the erroneous dogmas of Philosophers. Dreams of the Epicureans and Peripatetics.

4. First, then, let the reader remember that the providence we mean is not one by which the Deity, sitting idly in heaven, looks on at what is taking place in the world, but one by which he, as it were, holds the helms and overrules all events. Hence his providence extends not less to the hand than to the eye. When Abraham said to his son, God will provide, (Genesis 22:8,) he meant not merely to assert that the future event was foreknown to Gods but to resign the management of an unknown business to the will of Him whose province it is to bring perplexed and dubious matters to a happy result. Hence it appears that providence consists in action. What many talk of bare prescience is the merest trifling. Those do not err quite so grossly who attribute government to God, but still, as I have observed, a confused and promiscuous government which consists in giving an impulse and general movement to the machine of the globe and each of its parts, but does not specially direct the action of every creature. It is impossible, however, to tolerate this error. For, according to its abettors, there is nothing in this providence, which they call universal, to prevent all the creatures from being moved contingently, or to prevent man from turning himself in this direction or in that, according to the mere freedom of his own will. In this ways they make man a partner with God, — God, by his energy, impressing man with the movement by which he can act, agreeably to the nature conferred upon him while man voluntarily regulates his own actions. In short, their doctrine is, that the world, the affairs of men, and men themselves, are governed by the power, but not by the decree of God. I say nothing of the Epicureans, (a pest with which the world has always been plagued,) who dream of an inert and idle God, and others, not a whit sounder, who of old feigned that God rules the upper regions of the air, but leaves the inferior to Fortune. Against such evident madness even dumb creatures lift their voice.

My intention now is, to refute an opinion which has very generally obtained — an opinion which, while it concedes to God some blind and equivocal movement, withholds what is of principal moment, viz., the disposing and directing of every thing to its proper end by incomprehensible wisdom. By withholding government, it makes God the ruler of the world in name only, not in reality. For what, I ask, is meant by government, if it be not to preside so as to regulate the destiny of that over which you preside? I do not, however, totally repudiate what is said of an universal providence, provided, on the other hand, it is conceded to me that the world is governed by God, not only because he maintains the order of nature appointed by him, but because he takes a special charge of every one of his works. It is true, indeed, that each species of created objects is moved by a secret instinct of nature, as if they obeyed the eternal command of God, and spontaneously followed the course which God at first appointed. And to this we may refer our Savior’s words, that he and his Father have always been at work from the beginning (John 5:17;) also the words of Paul, that “in him we live, and move, and have our being,” (Acts 17:28;) also the words of the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews, who, when wishing to prove the divinity of Christ, says, that he upholdeth “all things by the word of his power,” (Hebrews 1:3.) But some, under pretext of the general, hide and obscure the special providence, which is so surely and clearly taught in Scripture, that it is strange how any one can bring himself to doubt of it. And, indeed, those who interpose that disguise are themselves forced to modify their doctrine, by adding that many things are done by the special care of God. This, however, they erroneously confine to particular acts. The thing to be proved, therefore, is, that single events are so regulated by God, and all events so proceed from his determinate counsel, that nothing happens fortuitously.

John Calvin-Institutes of the Christian Religion-Book I-Chapter 16-Henry Beveridge Translation

Even the wicked, under the guidance of carnal sense, acknowledge that God is the Creator. The godly acknowledge not this only, but that he is a most wise and powerful governor and preserver of all created objects

calvin.jpg_7MA21605611-0015Even the wicked, under the guidance of carnal sense, acknowledge that God is the Creator. The godly acknowledge not this only, but that he is a most wise and powerful governor and preserver of all created objects. In so doing, they lean on the Word of God, some passages from which are produced.

1. It were cold and lifeless to represent God as a momentary Creator, who completed his work once for all, and then left it. Here, especially, we must dissent from the profane, and maintain that the presence of the divine power is conspicuous, not less in the perpetual condition of the world then in its first creation. For, although even wicked men are forced, by the mere view of the earth and sky, to rise to the Creator, yet faith has a method of its own in assigning the whole praise of creation to God. To this effect is the passage of the Apostle already quoted that by faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the Word of God, (Hebrews 11:3;) because, without proceeding to his Providence, we cannot understand the full force of what is meant by God being the Creator, how much soever we may seem to comprehend it with our mind, and confess it with our tongue. The carnal mind, when once it has perceived the power of God in the creation, stops there, and, at the farthest, thinks and ponders on nothing else than the wisdom, power, and goodness displayed by the Author of such a work, (matters which rise spontaneously, and force themselves on the notice even of the unwilling,) or on some general agency on which the power of motion depends, exercised in preserving and governing it. In short, it imagines that all things are sufficiently sustained by the energy divinely infused into them at first. But faith must penetrate deeper. After learning that there is a Creator, it must forthwith infer that he is also a Governor and Preserver, and that, not by producing a kind of general motion in the machine of the globe as well as in each of its parts, but by a special providence sustaining, cherishing, superintending, all the things which he has made, to the very minutest, even to a sparrow. Thus David, after briefly premising that the world was created by God, immediately descends to the continual course of Providence, “By the word of the Lord were the heavens framed, and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth;” immediately adding, “The Lord looketh from heaven, he beholdeth the children of men,” (Psalm 33:6, 13, etc.) He subjoins other things to the same effect. For although all do not reason so accurately, yet because it would not be credible that human affairs were superintended by God, unless he were the maker of the world, and no one could seriously believe that he is its Creator without feeling convinced that he takes care of his works; David with good reason, and in admirable order, leads us from the one to the other. In general, indeed, philosophers teach, and the human mind conceives, that all the parts of the world are invigorated by the secret inspiration of God. They do not, however reach the height to which David rises taking all the pious along with him, when he says, “These wait all upon thee, that thou mayest give them their meat in due season. That thou givest them they gather: thou openest thine hand, they are filled with good. Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust. Thou sendest forth thy Spirit, they are created, and thou renewest the face of the earth,” (Psalm 104:27-30.) Nay, though they subscribe to the sentiment of Paul, that in God “we live, and move, and have our being,” (Acts 17:28,) yet they are far from having a serious apprehension of the grace which he commends, because they have not the least relish for that special care in which alone the paternal favor of God is discerned.

John Calvin-Institutes of the Christian Religion-Book I-Chapter 16-Henry Beveridge Translation

Divine Support

Thou art the blessed God, happy in Thyself, source of happiness in Thy creatures, my maker, benefactor, proprietor, upholder. Thou hast produced and sustained me, supported and indulged me, saved and kept me; Thou art in every situation able to meet my needs and miseries.

May I live by Thee, live for Thee, never be satisfied with my Christian progress but as I resemble Christ; and may conformity to His principles, temper, and conduct grow hourly in my life. Let Thy unexampled love constrain me into holy obedience, and render my duty my delight. If others deem my faith folly, my meekness infirmity, my zeal madness, my hope delusion, my actions hypocrisy, may I rejoice to suffer for Thy name.

Keep me walking steadfastly towards the country of everlasting delights, that paradiseland which is my true inheritance. Support me by the strength of heaven that I may never turn back, or desire false pleasures that will disappear into nothing. As I pursue my heavenly journey by Thy grace let me be known as a man with no aim but that of a burning desire for Thee, and the good and salvation of my fellow men.

Taken from The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions, edited by Arthur Bennett. Reformatted by Eternal Life Ministries.