When I Survey the Wondrous Cross…

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Love demands my soul…my life…my all…

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Atonement

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It has been some time since I brought this video back up to remind myself of my desperate condition and the reality that all of us face.  Only the Gospel answers all of this man’s questions and only the Gospel helps us to be honest with what we know about ourselves and hide from others.  Only the Gospel explains that there is more mercy in Christ than sin in us.  May we humble ourselves before His mighty hand and look to the cross for the only solution for our sinfulness and God’s holiness…the mediator between the two…Christ Jesus our Lord.

Remaining desperate…

Abide In Christ…

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Today in our Wednesday morning men’s group we were discussing walking in the Spirit to mortify the deeds of the flesh. From that discussion, abiding in Christ was mentioned. What it means to abide in Christ has always challenged me. I appreciate John Piper’s take on it and commend it to you. Enjoy the video at the end.

“We can see the picture Jesus has in his mind in verse 5: “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” There’s where I get the power idea. “Apart from me,” Jesus says, “you have no power to do anything.” You cannot love each other as I command you to love, if you do not abide in me as I abide in my Father.

So the newness of Jesus’ commandment is not only that Jesus has become our pattern for love by taking the role of a servant, but also that Jesus has become our power for love by himself abiding in the Father so that as we abide in him we are given the very love of the Father with which to love each other.”

I love the thought that Jesus is not only our pattern for love, but he has become our power for love.  Apart from Him we can do…NOTHING!

Remaining desperate…

Grace & Mercy

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One of the books I have been working through lately is John Piper’s, Future Grace. I commend the book to all and would like to share a portion concerning grace and mercy that served my soul.

” Since sin always brings misery, and misery is always experienced by sinners, therefore all of God acts of mercy, and all his acts of mercy are also acts of grace.  Every act of grace shown to a person because he is a sinner is also an act of mercy because his sin brings misery.  And every act of mercy shown to a person because of his miserable plight is also an act of grace because he does not deserve it.  It never makes sense to say that sometimes God shows mercy and sometimes he shows us grace.  Whenever he shows one he is showing the other.  The difference is whether the act of goodness is viewed in relation to our sin or in relation to our misery.”

How kind of God to show mercy because of my misery which is also an act of grace because we do not deserve it. A question I must keep before me each and every day.  Do I take his grace/mercy for granted?  Do I so quickly forget that His ability to show me grace/mercy came at a great cost….His wrath poured on His son, our Savior, JESUS.

Remaining desperate..

* After posting, I came upon a video on Justin Taylor’s blog, Between Two Worlds, that moved me to tears…I must share:

What is mortification?

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Spending time this morning reading about mortification by Puritan John Owen.  Asking myself as I do often, do I hate what is evil and cling to what is good.  More often, I am like Lot’s wife, looking back; experiencing a heart that clings to the very things that fueled the wrath that God poured out on His son in my place.  Why do I look at the cross with such disregard?….because I lack the faith that He is enough and can totally satisfy by desires beyond all comprehension.  O Father, fill my cavernous thirst with living water.  Allow me to share some thought from Owen that I found helpful…

“Charge your conscience with the guilt that appears in it from the rectitude and holiness of the law.  Bring the holy law of God into your conscience, lay your corruption to it, pray that you may be affected with it.  Consider the holiness, spirituality, fiery severity, inwardness, absoluteness of the law, and see how you can stand before it…If ever you will mortify your corruption, you must tie up you conscience, shut it from all shifts and exceptions, until it owns its guilt with a clear and thorough apprehension; so that then, as David speaks, your ‘iniquity may ever be before you” [Psalm 51:3]

Then, bring your sin to the gospel–not for relief, but for further conviction of its guilt; look on him you have pierced [Zech: 12:10; John 19:37], and be in bitterness. He then commends us to entertain our conscience daily with this treaty.

Then…

“Consider the infinite patience and forbearance of God toward you in particular.”

I commend this video…

Remaining desperate…

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed….

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For the past week I have been meditating over Romans 6, praying that God would burn these truths in my heart. I pray that He would do the same for you. O how I desire to walk by faith in believing versus 6 & 7…6 We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. 7 For one who has died has been set free from sin.

Dead to Sin, Alive to God…

6:1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.

5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 We know that our old self [1] was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. 7 For one who has died has been set free [2] from sin. 8 Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. 10 For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. 11 So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.

12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. 13 Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. 14 For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.
Slaves to Righteousness

15 What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! 16 Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, [3] you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? 17 But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, 18 and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. 19 I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification.

20 For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. 21 But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. 22 But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Now, I couldn’t resist a little Schoolhouse Rock video to start off the 4th of July….

Thanks to Denny Burke for posting it;  I suggest you check out his blog, it’s excellent.

Remaining desperate…

Are you satisfied with Jesus?

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Last night our youngest son, Drew, put a post on Twitter concerning a YouTube video he claimed as ‘incredible’.  It is a small portion John Piper’s sermon from June 21, 2009, The Tragic Cost of Her Cavernous Thirst.  His message was taken from John 4: 16-26, the conversation between Jesus and woman at the well.  I loved and was challenged by this portion of the sermon:

Learning About Jesus—And Ourselves

Here we are learning about Jesus, and we are learning about ourselves. He is compassionate and aggressive and surgical and relentless in his love. He knows all your past and all your present. Nothing is hidden from him. One person in the universe knows you completely—the most important person. He is indeed a prophet, and more than a prophet, as we will see more clearly next week.

And you are meeting yourself in this woman. One of the evidences that we have not drunk the water of life, or that we are quenching its spring, is that we are unstable like this woman, and always moving from one thing to the next seeking to fill the void that Jesus promises to fill.

I am amazed that Christ, the most important person in the universe and the person who knows me completely; he knows everything about me, yet he loves me….there is no greater love than this!

Enjoy the video that Drew placed on Twitter….

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