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Showing posts from May, 2017

Redemption in Christ – Eph. 1:7

Early in the twentieth century, theologian H. Reinhold Niebuhr accused so-called Christian liberals of preaching that a “God without wrath brought men without sin into a Kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a Cross.”Though evangelicals today have not yet abandoned the cross, it seems to me that it has become commonplace to us and the work of Christ as a result is not really appreciated as it ought to be with us.If this seems a bit overblown, ask yourself the following questions.Do we really rejoice as the apostle Paul does in Ephesians 1:7 over the redemption that we have through the blood of Christ?Does it thrill our hearts and does it affect our outlook on life and the way we process the difficulties of life?More to the point: what is more pressing, the problems of this life or your relationship with God?
Your answer to the last question is the real test of whether you truly value the cross of or not.Even though there is a lot of emphasis among evang…

Answering Objections to the Doctrine of Unconditional Election

Last week, we considered Paul’s words in Ephesians 1:4-6.There, we noted that Paul not only begins to unpack the spiritual blessings given to the saints and faithful in Christ Jesus, but gives the very basis of these blessings: the divine initiative and purpose of God in choosing to save sinful men and women through Christ.This is the doctrine of election.Before the foundation of the world, God the Father gave God the Son a people to save.Paul wants us to see that ultimately salvation is the work of God.Or, as the Scripture repeatedly puts it, “Salvation is of the Lord.” God saved us, and he did it on purpose not on accident, and this purpose was formed in the covenant of redemption even before the world began.And because salvation ultimately must be ascribed to the work and grace of God, he gets the glory, not us (cf. ver. 6).

We also tried to show that the purpose of election was not based on foreseen faith or good works of any kind.We are not saved because we are holy, we are saved …