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May 13, 2021 4:00 am
Herein lies the supreme guarantee of my security. It's all wrapped up in God's purpose. I didn't come along at some point in my life, and safe. I will of God. If that were the case, I come to another point in my life and Sam not loving unity. We were born, not of the will of the flesh, not a man but I was that guy is clearly no doctor. Bottom line, if someone claims one thing, but his actions tell a different story.
There's a problem. Sadly, some people see no problem when a person claims to be a Christian but his actions and attitudes and way of life bear no resemblance to what the Bible says a Christian should be today. John MacArthur gives you a list of the characteristics of a person who has been redeemed by God. Someone who's securely in the grip of God. That's his current study on grace to you and here's John now with today's lesson were looking at Romans chapter 8 verse 28 familiar words and read them to you. We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose. This says what we really wanted to hear. And that is that no matter what happens in our lives.
It works together.
Ultimately, for our eternal good and that is to say that nothing can ever change our relationship with the living God.
No matter what happens it works together for our good.
Paul has been masterfully revealing the great truth that justification is secured forever. It is secured forever by the decree of God. It is secured forever by the sacrifice of Christ and his imputed righteousness and it is secured forever by the unique intercessory ministry of the Holy Spirit.
The verse emphasizes four elements.
Let's just remind ourselves these four elements of our security. The extent of it. The recipients of at the source of the certainty of it. The extent of it. The recipients of at the source of it and the certainty of it. We talk about the extent of our security must talk about the recipients of the security who really possesses this kind of security probably makes it very clear in verse 28 God causes all things to work together for good to those who what love God, to those who are called according to his purpose. You have two very very pertinent statements there with tremendous implications.
One of them abuse our relationship with God. From our side and the other views our relationship with God. From his side. On the one hand we love God. On the other hand, he called us this promise of eternal security belongs to those who love God and who are the called of God, you could say that those two wonderful truths sum up our identity. We are the called who love God and God's people are described in many ways and I want to just look at that that description that is given here in verse 28 those who love God, God's people are described as his children.
There are described as his sheep. His flock there described as his sons there described as his bride's beloved his church there described as believers there described as true worshipers. They are described as saints. They are called Christians, but no designation of believers is more indicative of their character than this one. Here believers are defined as those who love God, we are the people who love God that's summing it up as simply as it can be summed up and for those who love God, God is causing all things to work together. First Corinthians 29 very interesting verse quoted from Isaiah just as it is written, things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who what who love him. Christians are people who love God. Believers are people who love God. That is the distinguishing characteristic of their lives. Now how do we mark out this love. If I want to look at my life or if need be. Help somebody else in and I want to determine whether or not they really love God, what am I looking for my looking for some sentiment in my looking for some emotion.
Am I looking for some some sort of nostalgia that comes out of the roots of my child or my background. What am I looking for when I'm looking for evidences of love for God. This love for God that defines a Christian is a love that loves what God loves is a love that loves what God loves don't tell me you love God, if you're filled with the love of the world first John simply says love the world was in you the love of God is not right. James put it this way friendship with the world is enmity with God. If you love God, then you love what God loves Psalm 119 97. Oh how I love thy law, it's my meditation all the day. He loves God's law because God loves his law.
He loves what is holy. What is sacred.
How sweet are thy words to my taste.
Verse 103 sweeter than honey to my mouth. Job said is his love for the word of God was was a stronger desire than his desire for his food. If you love God you love what God loves and what God loves predominantly as truth. Truth and virtue follows behind so you say you love God, then you meditate on his glory your trust in his power.
You seek communion with him. You enjoy peace in your soul, and that settled eternal relationship you feel the pain when he is dishonored and you love the things that he loves so that it's not some kind of an unnatural leap for you to set your affections on things above and not on things on the earth. I remind you get a first John two if you're dominated by the love of the world, the love of the fathers not in you. Furthermore, loving God means loving whom God loves not only loving what God loves us in terms of truth and virtue, but loving whom God loves. That simply means that if you really love God then you love God's people.
People say well I'm a Christian, but I don't go to church.
I don't really have any interest in church, you have a problem my friend because apparently you don't have any driving compelling affection for God's people. First John five again. Whoever loves the father loves the child born out of him. If you love the father you love his children.
When you set your love on someone you love those that belong to that someone so this is a love that loves what God loves in terms of truth and virtue, and it is a love that loves God loves in terms of people. In fact, first John two says if you say that you're in the light, and you hate your brother you're in the what really in the darkness because you love believers is not some kind of duty for me to be with Christian people there whom I love and I love them because I love Christ in them and they belong to him.
Let's turn the table and add something else.
It is a love that hates what God hates. It's a love that hates what God hates. If you say you're one of those who loves God then you're going to hate the things that he hates because your devotion and affection for him is going to color all of life. Genesis 39, nine story of Joseph. There is no one greater in this house than I and he has withheld nothing from me except you because you are his wife, how then could I do this great evil and sin against God.
I can't do this because God hates it and I don't want to do anything but God hates.
It's a very very basic foundational principle of loving God you love God you hate what God hates. I think it's some 9710 hate evil.
You who love the Lord he does me if you really love him. You'll hate what he hates me take that a step further. If you love God you will grieve over sin, you will grieve over sin. We've already hinted that we talked about the fact that you feel the pain when he's dishonored, but just refining a little bit you will grieve over sin if you love God because sin dishonors God like I think of Matthew 2675. There is the cockroaches. Peter stole the cockroaches you're going to deny me three times exactly what he did. He heard that cockroach.
He knew the prophecy come to pass and he went out and wept bitterly. That's exactly what he should have done if you love God you will grieve over sin, you have a hard time living a repetitious lease sinful life because you have to constantly cycle through grief, which sorta takes the charm out of it. We had a couple more if you love the Lord, you will love them with a love that rejects the world with a love that rejects the world you will hate what he hates. And that means the world which is the kingdom of darkness operated by the prince of the power of the air who Satan himself. You will disdain all of that you will not have any interest in the domain of darkness, you will not so profane the Lord's name, first John 215. You will not love the world and I'll just add one last thing. It is a love that longs for Christ's return. I mean, that's pretty basic to love. I think love seeks the honor of its object even human love.
I think love trusts. I think love seeks intimate communion. Love secures the soul with a with a wonderful piece love produces sensitivities to the feelings of the one loved love tends to love what the other love us and hate what the other hates and love tends to embrace what builds up in and resent what tears down.
Love rejects anything that would intrude in its sphere and love longs for intimacy for the closest and sweetest fellowship and that's why someone who truly loves the Lord longs for his return.
In second Timothy 48 it says there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness. That's the crown, which is eternal, a consummate righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing. If you love him you love the thought of his coming why the apostle John said.
Even so, Lord Jesus. All that is important, but there's one more even more compelling issue. The really sums it up.
Here it is. Loving the Lord means obeying his commands. That's really the sum of everything loving the Lord means obeying his commands. That's how you know whether you love him. If you have a desire to obey his word. Listen to John 1421 he who has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. Plain and simple. How do you know you love them, you have his commands, you obey them is commanded you to honor him and worship him is commanded you to be virtuous and pursue righteousness and avoid sin is commanded you study his word. Learn it and live it is commanded you to witness is commanded you to praise commanded you to care for one another to use your gifts to serve when you obey his commands. You give evidence of being the one who loves him and he loves me same verse shall be loved by my father and I will love him.
Simply stated, then in summation. True Christians are lovers of God, whose heart desire is toward God. They seek his glory. A trust is power. They long for sweet and intimate communion with him. They enjoy peace and rest and tranquility of soul, because of the unbroken relationship they have with them. They're not agitated troubled they feel the pain when he is dishonored. They love the things he loves.
They love the people he loves, they hate what he hates. They grieve over sin. They reject the world. They long for his coming and summarily they obey his word. Now, can a man generate the kind of love on his own, I just decides one day that I've been hating God all my life.
I just think it it's a much smarter thing to start loving him.
Frankly, I don't have that capacity. There's no way in my spiritual deadness and alienation from God. I could ever pull that off couldn't be done. I belong in the category of Exodus 25 verse five.
I am one of those generations of those who hate God and I am desperately wicked and unable to do anything at all about that.
How then can I come to the place where I love God, where there is total turnaround stop being a hater become a lover of God takes us to the second part of the verse go back to Romans 828 only one way can happen only one way this is profound stuff here versus 28 God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are what are called according to his purpose.
The only reason they love God is because there what are called. This is the divine love which initiates our love.
We love him. First John 419 because he first loved us. The word called is never used in the New Testament epistles to some external invitation. It always means what the theologians of called and effectual or ineffective or a saving call. It literally means to be brought to salvation. Verse 30 explains that whom he predestined he called and whom he called these he also what justified so were talking here about the divine act that initiates salvation and brings it to fulfillment. We have been called, not according to our own purpose, not according to our own plan, not according to our own wisdom or our own choice or decision. We have been called to be saved because of God's eternal everlasting redemptive purpose and it is because of the call of God that we are transformed and made capable of loving him in first Corinthians 12 it says the church is those who have been set apart in Christ Jesus made holy by calling that is the calling of God. The calling of God back in verse 24 perspectives. One believers are the called where the called Mrs. again this is not just a general invitation to be accepted or refused. This is an effectual call in every time that term is used in the New Testament epistles. It has that meaning we are the called and we have been called because we been predestined because we been called in predestined. We have been justified. Philippians 111. We have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to his purpose.
God had a purpose to redeem us. He predestined us before time began road our names in the Lamb's book of life and calls us to the salvation for which we were predestined to tremendous truth tremendous truth. We have been called to God's purpose. Second Timothy 19 who has saved us and called us with a holy calling a separated calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus.
Listen to this before time began before time began. God said his purpose as it were in place and is purpose involved are calling to salvation. This is the great glorious doctrine of election, Jude starts his little epistle. Judah bondservant of Jesus Christ and brother of James, to those who are the called, beloved in God the father and kept for Jesus Christ. Wow, what a statement beloved in God the father and kept for Jesus Christ. We are the called. We are the called first Peter 510 says God, the God of all grace has called us to his eternal glory in Christ is Martin Lloyd Jones used to like to say the only reason you love God is because God interfered with your life. First came the conviction of sin, then a subsequent humbling and brokenness followed by a hunger for salvation followed by the preaching of the gospel, followed by the gift of faith mixed with the hearing of the gospel by the word, by the spirit you were called to justification.
We love God because he first loved us. We love him because he called us he called us when we hated him. He called us when we were enemies. He called us out of darkness, for whom is this promise.
God causes all things to work together for good.
It's for whom is the promise of eternal goodness of eternal glory.
It's for those who love God. Who are those who love God.
They are the called according to divine eternal purpose that takes us to the third point the source of security. Source of this whole security is the purpose of God that all springs from the plan of God. It was all determined before the foundation of the world. He chose us in him before the foundation of the world.
Ephesians 14 says that we should be holy and blameless before him in love he predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to himself, and it was all according to the kind intention of his will, his will, his purpose, his plan source of this security is all bound up in God himself. We are the chosen of God.
You know I love God because he planned for you to do it. 11 because he planned for you to love him you love him because he determined to set his love on you. Listen to Deuteronomy 7 this is anything new with us was in the Deuteronomy here is this is written to Israel. You are a holy people to the Lord your God. How that happened, the Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for his own possession out of all the peoples are on the face of the earth as Richard Wolf said years ago. How of God to choose the Jews.
I suppose it would rhyme as well, but you could ask the same question. If you chose somebody else.
The reason that Israel had a special relationship with God is because God ordained it in verse seven, the Lord did not set his love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any of the peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples in other words, it wasn't anything about you that caused him to make a choice, but because the Lord loved you and The oath which he swore to your forefathers Lord just chose to love you and he is therefore the Lord your God.
God, the faithful God who keeps his covenant, his lovingkindness to a thousand generation with those who love him. He loved you first. So you could love him back. I love God because he planned for me to love them.
Herein lies the supreme guarantee of my security. It's all wrapped up in God's purpose. I didn't come along at some point in my life and say I'm going to love God. If that were the case, I could come to another part of my life and say I'm not loving him anymore, but we were born John 113 says not of the will of the flesh, not of the will of man, but of God. Someone wrote why was I made to hear his voice and enter while there's room when thousands make a wretched choice, and rather starve than come was the same love that spread the feast that sweetly forced us in else, we had still refused to taste, and perished in our sin.
Salvation is based on the sovereign purpose of God, who said I am the Lord, I change not one of the Somerset, I will lay down in peace and sleep, for thou, Lord, only make us me dwell in safety net. Wonderful where secure well last point, the extent of our security. The recipients of our security. Those who love them because they're called the source of our security is purpose the certainty of our security just as if we haven't heard enough, here's the final word. Verse 28 and we what was it, we know that's the certain not a mystical intuition but a matter of divine revelation. We know God is causing all things to work together for our good.
Which means our eternal glory because we love God because he first loved us and purposed to bring us to glory the tremendous. This is grace to you with John MacArthur. Thanks for being with us. John's current study comes from one of the Bible's greatest chapters. Romans eight it's titled the grip of God. John, you went through a substantial list of what it means to love the Lord and as you said, the whole crux of that love is obedience. So this idea. If you truly love the Lord your going to be willing to do what he says is this a new concept. Is this what the church is always believed in new you know this is a controversial issue today. Why well, it shouldn't be controversial.
Jesus said, you will know them by their fruits. The apostle Paul said, for by grace I say for faith that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God not of works with any man should boast than you were created unto good works, which God had before ordained that you should walk in them. So salvation is by grace through faith.
That's a gift of God and the outcome of that is your new creation known and marked by manifest good works that is the evidence of true conversion. Conversion is just that it is transformation is not just justification, which is a forensic declaration by God that you been transferred in the kingdom of God from the kingdom of darkness and Christ's righteousness imputed to you but there is a real sanctifying work that begins so that there is an actual transformation. You are a new creation that this is something that has been lost over periods of time in the history of the church.
But the church seems to find its way back to it when I recognize that there was a widespread notion that you could be a true believer and have no fruit and no evidence and you were still saved. I was deeply disturbed by that and I wrote an initial book called the gospel according to Jesus to get it right. Dealing with confessing him as Lord meant a willingness to be obedient and the powers well and I followed up with another book the Gospel according to the apostles. This is a powerful book and I didn't get as much traction as the first book, but I want to mention 2 to 1988 bestseller the gospel according to Jesus that generated a huge response and still does. And following that book came this book the gospel according to the apostles and it tackles questions like is repentance necessary for salvation is salvation simply believing facts about Jesus. Is it possible to pray and receive Jesus is still not be saved. Is it possible to be a Christian.
Never produce any Christian fruit vital timeless questions. We would love to get you a copy of the gospel according to the apostles. Get it immediately. You can order it from Grace to you and free shipping in the US and byways is one of the best ever books by John MacArthur, the gospel according to the apostles.
It makes an ideal gift for that loved one you been witnessing to to get a copy. Contact us today. The book is available in softcover for a reasonable price and shipping is free.
It's also available in Spanish to get your copy, call 855 grace for go to TTY.org. The title again. The gospel according to the apostles order when you call 855 grace or you can order from our website. TTY.now friend. If John's teaching like today's lesson from the grip of God. It's helping you know where you stand in relationship to Jesus Christ.
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Mail your tax-deductible gift to Grace to you. Box 4000 panorama city, CA 91412 or call us at 855 grace or you can donate email@example.com. That's our website TTY.org now for John MacArthur. I'm Phil Johnson with a question for you. Why does God save unworthy sinners like you and me. John helps answer that question tomorrow will be continuing his study on grip of God with another 30 minutes of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on grace to you