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The Staggering Thing!

July 24th, 2013

And here is the staggering thing—that in all which will one day belong to him we have been promised a share (since we were long ago destined for this by the one who achieves his purposes by his sovereign will), so that we, as the first to put our confidence in Christ, may bring praise to his glory!

Ephesians 1:11, Phillips Translation

I believe in the sovereignty of God and this truth, proclaimed clearly in Scripture, is the basis of our assurance of salvation. This God who has saved us in Christ Jesus did not do so by accident, or merely because we wanted Him to, or even mostly because we felt our need. He purposed, planned, and executed our salvation by His sovereign will.

We had a part to play – it was faith – but our salvation rests upon Him and His work. This is the reason for our confidence, that He who planned our salvation will also protect and keep our salvation.

God did so as a result of His nature and will achieve by our salvation the glorification of Himself, meaning not a show boat or show-off type of thinking, but the intention to fulfill His promise. He has a purpose and no force shall be able to thwart Him in accomplishing His purpose. Albert Barnes wrote:

The meaning is, that his purpose is determined by what he views to be right, and without consulting his creatures or conforming to their views. His dealings often seem to us to be arbitrary. We are incapable of perceiving the reasons of what he does. He makes those his friends who we should have supposed would have been the last to have become Christians…The best possible evidence that anything is done in perfect wisdom and goodness, is the fact that God does it. When we have ascertained that, we should be satisfied that all is right.

There is a rightness in the eyes of God to save us from sin and self through Christ Jesus, and we should take comfort in this truth. He has done so not with regret, not with a sigh that we could not do it another way. He knows how weak and sinful we are, but He has chosen from His love and for His glory to save us and to bring us into His eternal family. This face and this biblical view should be a source of great joy and comfort to us.

Christ spoke of childlike faith, and a child of a good parent never fears the love of that parent will be taken away, rather he rejoices and relaxes in this love. In the same way we are to rejoice and relax in the confidence we have in Him. What we have in Christ is not possible to be removed. It was given in grace, in love, and done so by the sovereignty of God.


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