The Grace Of God In Truth

#1
Wednesday, July 24, 2013, 7:24 a.m. – the Lord Jesus woke me with the song “Do Not Fear” playing in my mind. Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Colossians 1 (ESV): http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Colossians%201&version=ESV

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,
To the saints and faithful brothers in Christ at Colossae:
Grace to you and peace from God our Father.

We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth, just as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf and has made known to us your love in the Spirit.

And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins (Col. 1:1-14).


We Thank God

Paul thanked God for the believers’ faith in Christ Jesus and for their love for all the saints. They had such faith and love, not of their own accord, for God/Christ is the source and the giver of such faith and love. This is why Paul thanked God and gave him all the praise and glory, while still encouraging the saints in their God-given love and faith. Their faith and love rested not only in the person of Christ Jesus as their Lord and Savior, but also in the promise and hope of eternity with God in heaven, by God’s grace and through faith in him. So, we never have cause to take personal pride in our faith, but we should always be cognizant of the source of our faith – God himself – and we should give him all the glory!

The Word of Truth

Of this faith and hope they had heard previously in the “word of truth, the gospel,” and it was there that they understood “the grace of God in truth.” So, what is the truth of the gospel? And, what is “the grace of God in truth”? Truth obviously is the primary focus here.

We can discover the answers to these questions by reading the whole of the New Testament, but much of this “truth” is explained for us in vv. 13-29. Jesus is the Son of God, the second person of our triune God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. He is the creator of all things, i.e. he existed with God from the beginning, as well as he is God (See John 1). In him all things hold together. In other words, first of all, Christ Jesus is the Word, and he is the Truth, and he is the source of all truth. So, the word of truth is not only found in the written word of God, i.e. in the gospel of Jesus Christ, but in Christ Jesus himself.

Jesus Christ, although he was God, left his home in heaven, came to earth, took on human flesh, and was born as a baby, suffered as we suffer, and was tempted in all ways in which we are tempted, yet without sin. He was despised and rejected, hated, persecuted, accused falsely, mocked, spat upon, scourged, beaten and hung on a cross to die, as though he was a common criminal. He did all this for you and me. He could have called legions of angels in heaven to rescue him. He could have struck down his accusers and attackers. Yet, he willingly went to the cross, because when he died he took upon himself the sins of the entire world so that our sins were crucified and buried with him. When he was resurrected, he conquered sin, death, hell and Satan so that we could go free – from eternal damnation, from bondage (slavery) to sin, and free to walk in Christ’s righteousness and holiness.

For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good (Titus 2:11-14).
God’s plan for our redemption was (and is) for us to be delivered (set free) from the dominion (power, authority, control) of darkness (the absence of his light; evil; wickedness) and for us to be transferred to the kingdom (power, rule, authority) of his beloved Son, Jesus Christ. We are not “saved” just so we can go to heaven one day, as wonderful as that will be. The point or the object of our redemption was and is that we are no longer under the power and influence and control of the evil one and of sin, but our lives are now under the power, rule and authority of Christ Jesus, his truth, and his will for our lives. This is the truth of the gospel, and it is also the grace of God in truth. As well, we do not receive this truth by mere intellectual assent or via an emotional decision. We must cooperate fully with God’s work of redemption in our hearts and lives, in submitting to and in surrendering to his will and purposes for our lives, and in yielding to the Lordship of Christ over our lives, allowing his Spirit within us to work his will and truth in our lives and out through us for his glory and praise (Cf. Jn. 14; Lu 9:23-25; Ep. 2:8-9; 4:17-24; Ro. 6; 1 Jn.; Gal. 2:20, etc.).

And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister (Col. 1:21-23).
True faith in Jesus Christ not only involves our cooperation with God in this process of him delivering us out of darkness (sin; wickedness) and transferring us into his kingdom, i.e. with us now underneath his Lordship over our lives, but true faith is continuous, it endures to the end, it is faithful, it remains, and it overcomes, i.e. it is victorious and it conquers (Cf. Mt. 24:13; Jn. 15:6-10; Ro. 11:17-24; 1 Co 15:2; 11 Tm 2:10-13; Heb. 3:14-15; 11 Pet. 1:5-11; 1 Jn. 2:24-25; 2 Jn. 1:9, and Rv. 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21; etc.). Yet, although we have been given this faith in Christ Jesus, that does not mean we will always walk in perfect faith, i.e. we are not sinless, but we are forgiven (See 1 Jn. 2:1). Yet, we should never use God’s grace to us as an excuse for continued and willful sin, and for not continuing to obey the truth of God’s word, or for not walking daily in his righteousness, because the word teaches us that if we do so, we have no part with God (See 1 Jn.).

In All Spiritual Wisdom and Understanding

When Christ Jesus left this earth, he did not leave us as orphans. He sent his Holy Spirit to indwell us – to guide us into all truth, to teach us the things of Christ, to counsel, lead, direct, convict, encourage, and strengthen us; and to reveal to us the things God has prepared for us, even the deep things of God, so we might have the mind of Christ. And he also declares to us the things that are to come, etc. (Cf. Jn. 16:12-14; 1 Co. 2:9-16). So, we not only have Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, and the truth of his gospel of grace made known to us, and appropriated individually to our hearts and lives, but by God’s grace, through faith, we have also been given the Holy Spirit of God within us to fill us with the knowledge of God’s will for us in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so we might “walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.” Amen!

If we are filled with the knowledge of God’s will, it should pervade (permeate; saturate) our entire being – our thoughts, affections, emotions, will, intellect, reasoning, purposes, plans and actions. Our entire lives should be given over to Jesus Christ for his will and for his purposes for our lives, with nothing held back. As well, “In all spiritual wisdom and understanding” denotes not only what we might ascertain through the reading of scripture, and through the person and testimony of Jesus Christ, but also via the working and ministry of the Holy Spirit within us in revealing to us Christ, his truth, his mind, his character and his will for our lives, even examining the deep things of God. In other words, this knowledge and understanding is not merely intellectual knowledge (head knowledge) of the teachings of scripture, but it is knowledge made practical and applicable to our individual lives - where we are today, in our world, and in our life’s circumstances and situations. And, the Spirit of God is not limited in means for revealing this will of God to us, provided the means and methods do not contradict God’s revealed word in scripture or his divine character and will.

To walk worthy of the Lord and of his calling for our lives means we walk according to his truth, his word, his will, his divine character, and in his Spirit (not in our flesh). It means we take the knowledge given to us and we put it into practice in our lives by the power and working of his Spirit within us, as we cooperate fully with that work. It also means that true knowledge and wisdom from above is not just scholarly, but it is practical and applicable to our lives on a day-to-day basis, and it has to do with us living godly lives pleasing to God. It also means we act in agreement with what Jesus Christ did for us in dying on the cross for our sins, i.e. we forsake our lives of living for sin and self, and we turn to walk in faithful obedience to Jesus Christ and to his will and purposes for our lives. All this is done, not in human strength, will or reason, but in the power and the working of the Holy Spirit of God within us, as we daily die to sin and self, and we choose to walk in obedience to Christ.

Do Not Fear / An Original Work / June 2, 2013

Based off John 14

Do not let your hearts fear.
Trust in God. Trust in Christ.
“In My house you will find
Many rooms I have
Prepared for you,
And I will come back
And take you to heav’n.”

“I will take you to be with Me;
You’ll be where I am.”

“I am the way and
The truth and the life.
No one comes to the Father,
Except he comes through Me,
So put your faith in Me,
And do all of what I command.”

“Whoever has My commands
And obeys them loves Me.”

“I did not leave you as orphans.
I sent you the Counselor;
The Holy Spirit to live in you.
He teaches you all things,
And He reminds you of Me.”

“My peace I give to you,
So do not fear, trust in Me.”

http://originalworks.info/do-not-fear/
 
#2

I was not a believer before. But really, this site that tells so many helpful things about learning prophecies helped me a lot in changing my views. Now, I’m one of the many who also encourage the other non-believers
David, welcome to the site, and thank you for your response. If you would be so kind, would you please share with me and others here how this site has helped you change your views? And, if you would be so kind, would you please share some of what those views are? And in what ways do you encourage nonbelievers? Thank you!