Salvation by Grace

“God in His sovereign good pleasure from eternity elected certain persons in Christ to everlasting life. By nature the elect, like all other men, are totally depraved sinners who cannot save themselves. In order to save the elect God sent His Son into the world to purchase redemption for them by His precious blood and perfect obedience. By the atonement Christ merited for the elect the Holy Spirit, who effectually regenerates them and works the gift of saving faith in their hearts. That God’s chosen, whom Christ has redeemed and to whom the Holy Spirit has applied redemption, should perish is entirely out of the question. Those are the five points of Calvinism. Together they constitute one doctrine – that of salvation by sovereign grace.”

– R. B. Kuiper, For Whom did Christ Die? (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1982), 70.

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Suffering: The Path to Future Glorification

“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.” – Romans 8:16-17 (ESV)

“[T]his glorious inheritance is attained only through suffering. Because we are one with Christ, we are his fellow heirs, assured of being “glorified with him.” But, at the same time, this oneness means that we must follow Christ’s own road to glory, “suffering with him” (cf. also Phil. 1:29; 3:10; 2 Cor. 1:5)… [T]he suffering Paul speaks of here refers to the daily anxieties, tensions, and persecutions that are the lot of those who follow the one who was “reckoned with the transgressors” (Luke 22:37). Paul makes clear that this suffering is the condition for the inheritance; we will be “glorified with” Christ (only) if we “suffer with him.” Participation in Christ’s glory can come only through participation in his suffering… the glory of the kingdom of God is attained only through participation in Christ, and belonging to Christ cannot but bring our participation in the sufferings of Christ. Just as, then, Christ has suffered and entered into his glory (1 Pet. 1:11), so Christians, “fellow heirs with Christ,” suffer during this present time in order to join Christ in glory.”
– Douglas Moo, Romans (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1996), 505-506.

“Suffering is the path to future glorification.”
– Thomas Schreiner, Romans (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1998), 428

photo: Resclassic2

“The man Jesus Christ laid death in his grave”

Though the Earth cried out for blood
Satisfied her hunger was
Her billows calmed on raging seas
For the souls on men she craved

Sun and moon from balcony
Turned their head in disbelief
Their precious Love would taste the sting
Disfigured and disdained

On Friday a thief
On Sunday a King
Laid down in grief
But awoke with the keys
Of Hell on that day
The first born of the slain
The Man Jesus Christ
Laid death in his grave

So three days in darkness slept
The Morning Sun of righteousness
But rose to shame the throes of death
And over turn his rule

Now daughters and the sons of men
Would pay not their dues again
The debt of blood they owed was rent
When the day rolled a new

On Friday a thief
On Sunday a King
Laid down in grief
But awoke holding keys
To Hell on that day
The first born of the slain
The Man Jesus Christ
Laid death in his grave

On Friday a thief
On Sunday a King
Laid down in grief
But awoke with keys
Of Hell on that day
The first born of the slain
The Man Jesus Christ
Laid death in his grave

He has cheated
Hell and seated
Us above the fall
In desperate places
He paid our wages
One time once and for all

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“Stare at Jesus, Not at Porn”

I like this.

“Trying harder and harder to stop looking at porn isn’t the way to stop looking at porn—you must look somewhere else, namely, the person of Jesus Christ. Paul in 2 Corinthians 3:18 writes, “And we all with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another.” True inward change comes from beholding Jesus not from not looking at porn. As it has been said, what you behold you become, or as biblical theologian Greg Beale puts it, you become what you worship. Look at porn and become a person controlled by lust and idolatry or look at Jesus and become a glorious and whole human being that reflects the beauty and glory of God.”

BJ Stockman

The Inheritance: Reality Through Union

“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.” – Romans 8:16-17 (ESV)

“To say that believers are [only] heirs of God, however, leaves out a major motif in Paul’s thinking, for believers are also “fellow heirs with Christ.” This statement does not function as a corrective to the previous one but elucidates the means by which believers are heirs of God. The inheritance becomes a reality through union with Christ, the true seed of Abraham (Gal. 3:16). Those who are united with Christ share in the inheritance that he has gained for them.”
– Thomas Schriener, Romans (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1998), 428.

“Paul is… reminding us that Christians inherit the blessings of God’s kingdom only through, and in, Christ. We, “the sons of God,” are such by virtue of our belonging to the Son of God; and we are heirs of God only by virtue of our union with the one who is the heir of all God’s promises (see Mark 12:1-2; Gal. 3:18-19; Heb. 1:2).”
– Douglas Moo, Romans (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1996), 505.