Monday, August 18, 2008

Your Duty to Obey Part 2

The Scriptures and Obedience, Cont. - By A. W. Pink

1. A man profits from the Word as he discovers God’s demands upon him; His undeviating demands, for He changes not. It is a great and grievous mistake to suppose that in this present dispensation God has lowered His demands, for that would necessarily imply that His previous demand was a harsh and unrighteous one. Not so! ‘The law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good’. (#Ro 7:12) The sum of God’s demands is, ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might’ (#De 6:5) and the Lord Jesus repeated it in #Mt 22:37. The apostle Paul enforced the same when he wrote, ‘If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ let him be Anathema’. (#1Co 16:22)

2. A man profits from the Word when he discovers how entirely and how sinfully he has failed to meet God’s demands. And let us point out for the benefit of any who may take issue with the last paragraph that no man can see what a sinner he is, how infinitely short he has fallen of measuring up to God’s standard, until he has a clear sight of the exalted demands of God upon him! Just in proportion as preachers lower God’s standard of what He requires from every human being, to that extent will their hearers obtain an inadequate and faulty conception of their sinfulness, and the less will they perceive their need of an almighty Saviour. But once a soul really perceives what are God’s demands upon him, and how completely and constantly he has failed to render Him His due, then does he recognize what a desperate situation he is in. The law must be preached before any are ready for the Gospel.

3. A man profits from the Word when he is taught therefrom that God, in His infinite grace, has fully provided for His people’s meeting His own demands. At this point, too, much present-day preaching is seriously defective. There is being given forth what may loosely be termed a ‘half Gospel,’ but which in reality is virtually a denial of the true Gospel. Christ is brought in, yet only as a sort of make-weight. That Christ has vicariously met every demand of God upon all who believe upon Him is blessedly true, yet it is only a part of the truth. The Lord Jesus has not only vicariously satisfied for His people the requirements of God’s righteousness, but He has also secured that they shall personally satisfy them too. Christ has procured the Holy Spirit to make good in them what the Redeemer wrought for them.

The grand and glorious miracle of salvation is that the saved are regenerated. A transforming work is wrought within them. Their understandings are illuminated, their hearts are changed, their wills are renewed. They are made ‘new creatures in Christ Jesus’ (#2Co 5:17) God refers to this miracle of grace thus: ‘I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts’. (#Heb 8:10) The heart is now inclined to God’s law: a disposition has been communicated to it which answers to its demands; there is a sincere desire to perform it. And thus the quickened soul is able to say, ‘When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, thy face, Lord, will I seek’. (#Ps 27:8)

Christ not only rendered a perfect obedience unto the Law for the justification of His believing people, but He also merited for them those supplies of His Spirit which were essential unto their sanctification, and which alone could transform carnal creatures and enable them to render acceptable obedience unto God. Though Christ died for the ‘ungodly’, (#Ro 5:6) though He finds them ungodly (#Ro 4:5) when He justifies them, yet He does not leave them in that abominable state. On the contrary, He effectually teaches them by His Spirit to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts (#Tit 2:12) Just as weight cannot be separated from a stone, or heat from a fire, so cannot justification from sanctification.

When God really pardons a sinner in the court of his Conscience, under the sense of that amazing grace the heart is purified, the life is rectified, and the whole man is sanctified. Christ ‘gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people [not ‘careless about’ but], zealous of good works’. (#Tit 2:14) Just as a substance and its properties, causes and their necessary effects are inseparably connected, so are a saving faith and conscientious obedience unto God. Hence we read of ‘the obedience of faith’. (#Ro 16:26)

Bro. Pat


Mark Swan said...

God help us to NEVER lower the standard or demands of the Word just because we feel will cannot measure up!
He who began a good work, will be faithful to complete it!
Also, may we never settle for "half Gospel"!
Praise God there is fullness in Jesus, ALWAYS !

Patrick Eaks said...

Amen! Sister, thank you for your comments here. The Word of God has to be the standard for all that we do. I am thankful that his word is,"....quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart."
Bro Pat