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David Wells – Consider Your End And Your Companion

25 Nov


The goal of Christ’s redemption was that we might know God, love him, serve him, enjoy him, and glorify him forever. This is, indeed, our chief end. It was for this end that Christ came, was incarnate, died in our place, and was raised for our justification. It was that we might know God. Once, we were part of that world which “did not know God” (1 Cor. 1:21). But now we “have come to know God” (Gal. 4:9). We “know him who is from the beginning” (1 John 2:13) because we know “the love of Christ,” and the aim of redemption is that we “may be filled with all the fullness of God” (Eph. 3:19). And this knowledge of God, this experience of his goodness, is what our experience in life has sometimes diminished. That is why it must constantly be renewed.

This is our goal in life, that we might be God-centered in our thoughts and God-fearing in our hearts, as J. I. Packer put it. We are to be God-honoring in all that we do. And how is that going to happen if we never consider, or consider only fleetingly, or irregularly, the end toward which we travel, and the one who also walks with us through life on the way to this end?

~David Wells~

God In The Whirlwind: How the Holy-love Of God Reorients Our World (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2014), 16

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Sinclair Ferguson – The Great Exchange

21 Sep

Without compromise of His righteousness revealed in wrath, God righteously justifies sinners through the redemption He provided in Christ’s blood-propitiation for our sins. This Paul states in the rich and tightly-packed words of Romans 3:21-26.

21 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— 22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God ‘s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. 26 It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

~Sinclair Ferguson~

In Christ Alone (Lake Mary, FL; Reformation Trust Publishing; 2007) p. 41.

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John Stott – Acknowledging Our Nakedness

9 Apr

But we cannot escape the embarrassment of standing stark naked before God. It is no use for us to try to cover up like Adam and Eve in the garden. Our attempts at self-justification are as ineffectual as their fig leaves. We have to acknowledge our nakedness, see the divine substitute wearing our filthy rags instead of us, and allow him to clothe us with his own righteousness (cf. Rev 3:17-18). Nobody has ever put it better than Augustus Toplady in his immortal hymn “Rock of Ages”

Nothing in my hand I bring,
Simply to your Cross I cling;
Naked, come to you for dress;
Helpless, look to your for grace;
Foul, I to the fountain fly;
Wash me, Savior, or I die.

~John Stott~

The Cross of Christ (Colorado Springs, Colorado; Navpress; 2011) p. 162

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John Stott – What is Redemption?

2 Apr

What then, first, is the human plight from which we cannot extricate ourselves and which makes it necessary for us to be redeemed? We have seen that in the Old Testament people were redeemed from a variety of grave social situations such as debt, captivity, slavery, exile and liability to execution. But it is a moral bondage from which Christ has ransomed us. This is described now as our “transgressions” or “sins” (since in two key verses “redemption” is a synonym for “the forgiveness of sins” [Eph. 1:7 and Col 1:14; cf. Heb. 9:15]), now as the “curse of the law” (namely the divine judgment which it pronounces on law-breakers [Gal. 3:13; 4:5]), and now as the “empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers” (1 Peter 1:18). Yet even our release from these captivities does not complete our redemption. There is more to come. For Christ “gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness,” to liberate us from all the ravages of the Fall. This we have not yet experienced. Just as the Old Testament people of God, though already redeemed from their Egyptian and Babylonian exiles, were yet waiting for the promise of a fuller redemption, “looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem” (Lk 2:38; cf Lk 1:68; 24:21), so the New Testament people of God, though already redeemed from guilt and judgment, are yet waiting for “the day of redemption” when we shall be made perfect. This will include “the redemption of our bodies.” At that point the whole groaning creation will be liberated from its bondage to decay and be brought to share in the freedom of the glory of God’s children. Meanwhile, the indwelling Holy Spirit is himself the seal, the guarantee and the first-fruits of our final redemption. Only then will Christ have redeemed us (and the universe) from all sin, pain, futility and decay.

~John Stott~

The Cross of Christ (Colorado Springs, Colorado; Navpress; 2011) p. 175-176

Books by John Stott