Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Nominal Believer?

"[W]hen the Spirit moves in a person's heart and awakens them to faith and repentance, their view of Jesus changes.  The nominal believer respects Jesus, but does not reverence or exalt Him.  The true Christian takes delight in Jesus, a delight that is often palpable and contagious."  ~ Owen Strachan

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Immanuel


Lift up your eyes and see the riches of the
all-sufficient King seated on his throne in glory
See his scepter that stretches the expanse of unmeasured space
Hear Him who holds all things together declare
"All things are mine without exception"
See the curiosity of the cosmos
As Christ condescends to His most cherished creatures
See the astonishment of angels as the Almighty advances towards Earth
See the humility of the pre-existent King born of a virgin birth
The Infinite becomes infant, the Maker becomes man
The divine becomes despised and the Christ is crucified
The Author of all creation cursed upon the tree
That He himself spoke into being
And the Lord of life was laid in the tomb
But the grave could not contain Him
and so the Son of Man was raised to life
But why?
To draw near, to pierce our greatest fear
To shed satisfying blood on our behalf
To give back the life we were meant to have
To enjoy, to hear, to adore, to taste
And to look with peace upon our Savior's face
And to embrace Him with an undying faith
To interpose all His worthiness into us
And serve the most unworthy and undeserving
He is our God and we are mere men made by Him
We are not like Him but he loves us and moves among us
The great uncreated and the created no longer separated
He is Immanuel, God with us

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

For Your Sake He Became Poor

The Lord Jesus Christ was eternally rich, glorious, and exalted; but "though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor." As the rich saint cannot be true in his communion with his poor brethren unless of his substance he ministers to their necessities, so (the same rule holding with the head as between the members), it is impossible that our Divine Lord could have had fellowship with us unless he had imparted to us of his own abounding wealth, and had become poor to make us rich. Had he remained upon his throne of glory, and had we continued in the ruins of the fall without receiving his salvation, communion would have been impossible on both sides. Our position by the fall, apart from the covenant of grace, made it as impossible for fallen man to communicate with God as it is for Belial to be in concord with Christ. In order, therefore, that communion might be compassed, it was necessary that the rich kinsman should bestow his estate upon his poor relatives, that the righteous Saviour should give to his sinning brethren of his own perfection, and that we, the poor and guilty, should receive of his fulness grace for grace; that thus in giving and receiving, the One might descend from the heights, and the other ascend from the depths, and so be able to embrace each other in true and hearty fellowship. Poverty must be enriched by him in whom are infinite treasures before it can venture to commune; and guilt must lose itself in imputed and imparted righteousness ere the soul can walk in fellowship with purity. Jesus must clothe his people in his own garments, or he cannot admit them into his palace of glory; and he must wash them in his own blood, or else they will be too defiled for the embrace of his fellowship. O believer, herein is love! For your sake the Lord Jesus "became poor" that he might lift you up into communion with himself.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

The Need for Godly Parenting

"Though parents may feel inadequate to teach and train, they can take great comfort in knowing that an authentic witness, coupled by sound instruction, has great power.  The lives of countless believers raised by godly parents testify to this reality.  Though they may buttress our parenting, we do not need flashy children's programs or charismatic youth speakers.  We need to be godly parents whose lives back up our faith."  ~ Owen Strachan & Doug Sweeney