Advent is an incredible opportunity to reset your focus and meditate on the truth of God’s word more than the issues you face and the anxieties you feel. Lift your eyes off this current cultural moment, not to ignore it and pretend it does not exist, but so that that you can see it in light of Christ.
If you genuinely pray to your Father in Heaven and ascribe to him his due adoration you will never leave the throne room unchanged in your heart.
God’s purpose also includes our joy. Yes, I believe God wants you to be happy! God’s glory and our joy are not dichotomous. Rather they go hand in hand. God’s glory does not contradict our joy. God’s glory is our joy because we were made by God, for God.
Therefore we should live now as God’s kids fully convinced of his sovereign plan for our future. Yes, persecution will come. Yes, times will be difficult. And yes Jesus is our king and all the citizens of his kingdom win in the end.
As Christians, we are those that are in Christ. We are no longer slaves of sin and darkness, but SONS AND DAUGHTERS of the living God. That’s who we are. So when we sin the gospel calls us to repent and turn away from it. Additionally, it calls us to turn to Jesus in faith, not just for mercy, though it is needed, but also for affirmation of our identity. That we are who he says we are. That we remain God’s child and he loves us and adopted us as his kids. A choice he made long before we ever stuffed up.
Repentance brings us out from behind the proverbial tree of shameful hiding and sits us in the Father’s arms that remind us of his unrelenting love and endless fountain of mercy. And thereby our conscious is cleansed; our souls washed clean once again. We feel free.
Do you mortify? Do you make it your daily work? Be always at it whilst you live; cease not a day from this work; be killing sin or it will be killing you. John Owen
The best way to develop a Biblical doctrine is to consider how a theme is introduced, how it is further developed throughout the biblical narrative and how it is eventually culminated. It is essential that you explore all that the Bible says and to consider how it all fits together.
It was the intention of the heart that led the hands to take the fruit and eat. Eve saw something she deemed good, even though God had said it was not good, she delighted, she desired and then she ate and Adam likewise. Their sin began in their head and their heart well before their hands.
Theology matters. Truth matters. Get truth wrong and you end up doing two egregious things – you misrepresent God and you mislead people…Therefore my aim with this series is to represent God well, both in what I say and how I say it. As well as to better equip people…
So live a life of effort this year but put behind you a life of earning.
It’s more than just a rest from something; it’s a rest in someone. He doesn’t just take your burden off you, he gives you his peace, he gives you his strength, he gives you his grace and mercy, his encouragement, his friendship. Jesus gives you his life. Recieve from him and he will give you rest. Ultimate rest. Rest for you soul.