The Changed Life

If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. —2 Corinthians 5:17

What understanding do you have of the salvation of your soul? The work of salvation means that in your real life things are dramatically changed. You no longer look at things in the same way. Your desires are new and the old things have lost their power to attract you. One of the tests for determining if the work of salvation in your life is genuine is— has God changed the things that really matter to you? If you still yearn for the old things, it is absurd to talk about being born from above— you are deceiving yourself. If you are born again, the Spirit of God makes the change very evident in your real life and thought. And when a crisis comes, you are the most amazed person on earth at the wonderful difference there is in you. There is no possibility of imagining that you did it. It is this complete and amazing change that is the very evidence that you are saved.

What difference has my salvation and sanctification made? For instance, can I stand in the light of 1 Corinthians 13 , or do I squirm and evade the issue? True salvation, worked out in me by the Holy Spirit, frees me completely. And as long as I “walk in the light as He is in the light” (1 John 1:7), God sees nothing to rebuke because His life is working itself into every detailed part of my being, not on the conscious level, but even deeper than my consciousness.

by Oswald Chambers

Saved by Grace

Ephesians 2:1-10

Why is it that so many who have placed faith in Jesus Christ find themselves struggling and feeling defeated? One reason may be that they have never grasped exactly what took place when they were saved. Furthermore, they may fail to understand salvation’s current meaning in their life.

From God’s viewpoint, before we trusted Christ as our Lord and Savior, we were spiritually dead in our transgressions (Eph. 2:5), under His wrath (John 3:36), and condemned to eternal separation from Him (Rev. 20:15). He saw us as people who deserved judgment yet whose efforts were futile against divine anger—rebellious people who were unable to turn to Him apart from the work of the Holy Spirit.

God saw us as helpless and hopelessly lost. Clearly, something outside of ourselves was needed for us to be made acceptable in His eyes. And God loved us so much that He was willing to do whatever was necessary to rescue us from our desperate condition.

His solution was grace. God sent a Savior who bore our sins, became sin for us, and endured the wrath of the Father for those sins. This Savior was God’s one and only Son, who paid the debt we owed for our past, present, and future transgressions—a debt we never could have paid.

Jesus was the sacrificial Lamb who shed His blood in our place—a Redeemer who rescued us from spiritual death and made us acceptable before God. What took place? It was a miracle of life, a rebirth for all who would believe, because we were once spiritually dead.

The Called

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)

This great promise has been an immeasurable source of strength and comfort to Christians, especially during times of trial. It is specifically directed, however, only to those who are “the called.”

Recognition of those who are “the called” is best achieved through their synonymous description as “them that love God.” There are also numerous other Scriptures that further describe them. There are two Greek words (each occurring 11 times) which specifically refer to those who are members of this select group: One of these words is kletos (“called”); the other is klesis (“calling”). Another very important term is ekklesia, meaning “called out,” which occurs 115 times and is almost always translated “church.” That is, a true church is composed of people who have been specially called by God out of the world system, then joined together in a local church to fulfill the purposes of their divine calling.

“Not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called” (1 Corinthians 1:26). No I.Q. test, or physical exam, or social standing is used as a criterion; neither are any human achievements. “[God] hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began” (2 Timothy 1:9).

God’s call was strictly by grace, according to His own eternal purpose! The means by which God calls is the gospel: “Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thessalonians 2:14). No wonder, then, that we can know that all things work together for good on behalf of those whom God has called, and who therefore love God! HMM

Rejoice in the Lord always , again I say Rejoice

Rejoice in the Lord alway; and again I say Rejoice.— Philippians 4:4.

REJOICE in hope and fear,
Rejoice in life and death,
Rejoice when threatening storms are near,
And comfort languisheth:
When should not they rejoice
Whom Christ His brethren calls,
Who hear and know His guiding voice
When on their hearts it falls?
JOHN MOULTRIE.

TO “give thanks to Him for all things,” is, indeed, a very difficult duty; for it includes giving thanks for trials of all kinds; for suffering and pain, for languor and weariness; for the crossing of our wills; for contradiction, for reproaches; for loneliness; for privations. Yet they who have learned submission will not find it a hard duty; for they will so entirely love all that God wills and appoints, that they will see it is the very best thing for them. Hereafter they will see all the links of the chain, and how wonderfully even those have fitted, which at the tide seemed to have no adaptation or agreement. This belief enables them to praise Him, and give thanks now for each thing, assured that as it has been, so it will be, that the God of love will do all things well. PRISCILLA MAURICE.

Is it well with thee? And she answered, it is well

Is it well with thee? And she answered, it is well. 2 Kings 4:26

We having the same spirit of faith.

As chastened, and not killed; as sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. For which cause we faint not, but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen.

Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.

2 Corinthians 4:13. 2 Corinthians 6:9,10. 2 Corinthians 4:8-10, 16-18. 3 John 1:2.

Godly sorrow worketh repentance not to be repented of

Godly sorrow worketh repentance not to be repented of. 2 Corinthians 7:10

Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly. — If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. — The blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. Mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of my head: therefore my heart faileth me. Be pleased, O LORD, to deliver me: O LORD, make haste to help me.

Turn thou to thy God: keep mercy and judgment, and wait on thy God continually. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. — He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds. —He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good: and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

Matthew 26:75. 1 John 1:9. 1 John 1:7. Psalm 40:12,13. Hosea 12:6. Psalm 51:17. Psalm 147:3. Micah 6:8.