40 Days in Philippians DAY THIRTY SEVEN

Read Philippians 4:21-23

 

One thing we see in this final section of Philippians is that it all comes back to the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

We cannot even begin to fulfill our commitments without His grace. We desperately need His provision and sovereign grace in our lives to be faithful to obey in giving the next three years.

 

What is grace?

 

Herman Bavinck: “Ascribed to God, grace is His voluntary, unrestrained, unmerited favor toward guilty sinners, granting them justification and life instead of the penalty of sin, which they deserved.”

 

J.I. Packer “ The grace of God is love freely shown toward guilty sinners, contrary to their merit and indeed in defiance of their merit. It is God showing goodness to persons, who deserve only severity and had no reason to expect anything but severity.”

 

In order to understand grace, we need to have a good handle of four great Biblical truths.

 

  1. 1.     The sinfulness of sin

Read Psalm 32:1–2

David uses three specific Hebrew words for sin:

  1. Transgression–this means a breaking loose or tearing away from God, going astray, or rebellion—this is a description of sin as being against God Himself personally. We have personally offended and transgressed or rebelled against our Infinite Creator
  2. Sin—this word means a deviation or going wayward or falling short or missing the mark or turning from the right path—it was used to describe how archers would shoot arrows and totally miss the target—this is a description of sin against God’s law or holy standard
  3. Iniquity–this word means perversion, distortion, twisted, corrupt, or criminal with no respect for God—this describes sin as our condition—we are depraved. We sin because we are first sinners.

 

These three expressions of sin sum up the totality of what it means, as we stand condemned under God’s wrath. Not only have we offended Him personally, rebelled and disobeyed against His law, but also we are sinful to the core of our beings because of Adam’s transgression. This puts us in dire straits that require the LORD to do a major work in fixing this problem.

Read Romans 3:10–18

  1. 2.     God’s wrath

Read John 3:36 

Read Romans 2:5–6 

Read Ephesians 5:5–6

Grace does not think of us as merely undeserving as if we are neutral, but ill-deserving—it is not simply that we do not deserve grace; we deserve hell.

 

  1. 3.     Our spiritual inability

Read John 6:44

Read Ephesians 2:1–3

Grace ceases to be grace if God is compelled to bestow it in the presence of human merit.

 

  1. 4.     God’s sovereign freedom to grant grace

 

God in His fullness as the Trinity has done the wonderful, sovereign action of granting us grace as hell-deserving, rebellious sinners who deserve nothing but His wrath.

 

In Ephesians 1:3-13, we see the Father, the Son, and the Spirit working together to grant us grace in salvation.

 

Before the foundation of the world, the Father predestined us for salvation as His children.

 

Over 2000 years ago, Jesus the Son bought our eternal redemption through His shed blood on the cross.

 

And at a point in time, when you heard the word of the gospel, the Holy Spirit sovereignly opened your heart and through the new birth gave you the gift of faith so that you could believe in Jesus.

 

So why does God do all of this? It is repeated three times in this passage—to the praise of His glorious GRACE!!!

 

Meditate upon the song we sing in church, which focuses on God’s abounding grace:

Come praise and glorify our God
the Father of our Lord.
In Christ he has in heavenly realms
his blessings on us poured;
for pure and blameless in his sight
he destined us to be
and now we’ve been adopted through
his Son eternally

     To the praise of your glory,
     to the praise of your mercy and grace,
     to the praise of your glory,
     you are the God who saves.

Come praise and glorify our God
who gives his grace in Christ.
In him our sins are washed away,
redeemed through sacrifice.
In him God has made known to us
the myst’ry of his will
that Christ should be the head of all,
his purpose to fulfill.

Come praise and glorify our God
for we’ve believed the Word
and through our faith we have a seal:
the Spirit of the Lord.
The Spirit guarantees our hope
until redemption’s done,
until we join in endless praise
to God, the Three in One.

 

 

 

 

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