‘Good enough’ for God?

Spurgeon

As long as we hold out hope that we are, or that we may, someday, by our own effort, become, ‘good enough’ for God, we are, and will remain, lost to Him. This first of three brief posts on the theme of Grace comes from Charles Spurgeon….

 

”But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus….”
Acts 15:11 ESV

 Charles Spurgeon wrote…. “Another thing is very clear here. The apostle did not believe in self-righteousness. The creed of the world is, ‘Do your best and it will be all right with you.’ To question this is treason against the pride of human nature, which evermore clings to salvation by its own merits. Every man is born a Pharisee. Self-confidence is bred in the bones – and will come out in the flesh. ‘What?’ says a man, ‘do you not believe that if a man does his best, he will fare well in the next world? Why, you know, we must all live as well as we can, every man according to his own light; and if every man follows out his own conscience, as near as may be, surely it will be well with us?’ That is not what Peter said. Peter did not say, ‘We believe that through doing our best, we shall be saved like other people.’ He did not even say, ‘We believe that if we act according to our light, God will accept that little light for what it was.’ No, the apostle strikes out quite another track, and solemnly affirms, ‘We believe that through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved,’ not through our good works, not through anything we do, not by the merit of anything which we feel or perform, or promise to perform, but by grace, that is to say, by the free favor of God….”

From Charles Spurgeon in, “Grace – the One Way of Salvation.” – a sermon.

He knows my name?

Utmost

Of all men’s ideas of God, the least attractive to me, personally, is the notion of God as impersonal force; benign, blind, or any otherwise. Of all our characteristics as creations of God, made in His image, it is our person-hood, I think, that reflects His own nature best, albeit broken by sin  and in need of re-creation in Christ, by His Spirit. That God knows my name and calls me to Himself by name is, to me, beyond words to explain. This third and final brief post on the theme of the call of God also comes from Oswald Chambers…

Oswald Chambers wrote…. “…. he calls … by name ….” John 10:3 ESV

It is possible to know all about doctrine and yet not know Jesus. The soul is in danger when knowledge of doctrine outsteps intimate touch with Jesus. Why was Mary weeping? Doctrine was no more to Mary than the grass under her feet. Any Pharisee could have made a fool of Mary doctrinally, but one thing they could not ridicule out of her was the fact that Jesus had cast seven demons out of her; yet His blessings were nothing in comparison to Himself. Mary ‘saw Jesus standing and knew not that it was Jesus…’; immediately she heard the voice, she knew she had a past history with the One who spoke, ‘Master!’”

“Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said to him in Aramaic, “Rabboni!”
John 20:16 ESV

The Call of the Wild?

Utmost

If we, these days, out of respect for political correctness, attempt to ‘civilize’ God (‘Christianize’ Him?), we risk dis-respecting Him and diminishing our relationship with Him and separating ourselves from His purposes in us and in the world. Perhaps the solution to much of our spiritual malaise is to listen again for the call of the Wildness of God and recognize Him again, in ourselves, in Jesus. This second brief post on the theme of the call of God comes from Oswald Chambers…

“I heard the voice of the Lord saying, Whom shall I send?” Isaiah 6:8

Oswald Chambers wrote…. “When we speak of the call of God, we are apt to forget the most important feature, viz., the nature of the One Who calls. There is the call of the sea, the call of the mountains, the call of the great ice barriers; but these calls are only heard by the few. The call is the expression of the nature from which it comes, and we can only record the call if the same nature is in us. The call of God is the expression of God’s nature, not of our nature. There are strands of the call of God providentially at work for us which we recognize and no one else does. It is the threading of God’s voice to us in some particular matter, and it is no use consulting anyone else about it. We have to keep that profound relationship between our souls and God.”

From Oswald Chambers in My Utmost for His Highest

It’s not rocket surgery?

Utmost

First of all, God calls us to Himself, by Grace, through faith in Christ. Then He continues to call us, daily, to a life of discipleship. What form that will take, daily, He will reveal to us as He did to the twelve, who were, at first, just as baffled as we often are. This first of three brief posts on the theme of the Call of God comes from Oswald Chambers…

31 And taking the twelve, he said to them, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished…. 34 But they understood none of these things. This saying was hidden from them, and they did not grasp what was said. Luke 18:31, 34 ESV

Oswald Chambers writes…. “God called Jesus Christ to what seemed unmitigated disaster. Jesus Christ called His disciples to see Him put to death; He led every one of them to the place where their hearts were broken…

“There comes the baffling call of God in our lives also…  It cannot be stated definitely what the call of God is to, because His call is to be in comradeship with Himself for His own purpose, and the test is to believe that God knows what He is after. The things that happen do not happen by chance, they happen entirely to the decree of God. God is working out His purposes.

“If we are in communion with God and recognize that He is taking us into His purposes, we shall no longer try to find out what His purposes are. As we go on in the Christian life it gets simpler, because we are less inclined to say – ‘Now why did God allow this and that?’

… “A Christian is one who trusts the wits and wisdom of God, and not his own wits. If we have a purpose of our own, it destroys the simplicity and the leisureliness which ought to characterize the children of God,”

From Oswald Chambers in My Utmost for His Highest