Why should we know God's Word?

In our day and age where anti-intellectualism runs rampant in the visible church, it is not surprising to see poll after poll verify what students of scripture have known for many years. The visible church does not know much about the scriptures they profess to believe in. This is sad considering many saints during the Reformation period lost their lives for the sake of being able to read and study God's word. Not to mention the many passages in scripture that speak as such:

Isaiah 66:2 This is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word.
John 8:31-32 Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, "If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."
Psalm 19:7-8 The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.
Psalm 119:9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word.
Psalm 119:11 I have hidden Your Word in my heart, that I might not sin against You.
Psalm 119:103 How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
Psalm 119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Psalm 119:130 The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.
Psalm 119:162 I rejoice at your word like one who finds great spoil.

The posts on this blog will address essential Biblical doctrines of the Christian faith. You can find much of the background for the posts here. My prayer for these posts is that the people who read them will be encouraged to open their Bibles and not just read a verse or two, but learn them and indeed, be transformed by them. As Jesus prayed, "Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth." (John 17:17). This is my prayer as well.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Sovereign Election pt 1

Sovereign Election pt 1
-                     Dr. Grudem’s definition of election is:
o      “Election is an act of God before creation in which He chooses some people to be saved, not on account of any foreseen merit in them, but only because of His sovereign good pleasure.”
·       Grudem’s definition specifically talks about certain people being chosen unto salvation.
o      We will see the New Testament speaks clearly about this (in part 2), but do we see the general concept of God choosing people based only on His good pleasure?
·       Do we see God selecting people for various purposes not because of anything they have done but only because He desired to choose them for a particular purpose?
·       The answer is a definitive YES!
-                     We see this throughout the scriptures – See the multitude of examples:
o      Abraham
·       Genesis 18:19 - For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice.
·       Nehemiah 9:7You are the LORD, the God who chose Abram and brought him out of Ur of the Chaldeans and gave him the name Abraham.
·       See also Isaiah 51:2
o      Israel
·       Deuteronomy 7:6-8 - For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth. It was not because you were more in number than any other people that the LORD set his love on you and chose you, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but it is because the LORD loves you and is keeping the oath that he swore to your fathers, that the LORD has brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.
·       See also Amos 3:2, Psalm 147:20
o      David
·       Psalm 78:70-71 - He chose David his servant and took him from the sheepfolds; from following the nursing ewes he brought him to shepherd Jacob his people, Israel his inheritance.
·       See also 1 Samuel 16:1, 2 Samuel 7:8, 1 Kings 8:16
o      Jeremiah
·       Jeremiah 1:5 - Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.
o      John the Baptist was chosen
o      Jesus chose the 12 apostles – John 15:16 & 19, 13:18, 6:70
o      Paul was chosen – Galatians 1:15
o      The Lord assures Elijah in 1 Kings 19:18 - I will leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.
·       Psalm 65:4 - Blessed is the one you choose and bring near, to dwell in your courts! We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house, the holiness of your temple
-                     Election for judgment & restoration
o      PharaohExodus 9:14-16; 12:12; 14:17-18, God raised up Pharaoh to judge Egypt’s gods and show forth His power and glory in delivering Israel.
o      Assyria against Israel in judgment – Isaiah 10:5-6
o      Babylon against Judah in judgment – Jeremiah 27:2-7
o      Cyrus of Persia to restore the Jews post judgment – Isaiah 45:1-4
·       You could also argue that ALL the great prophets and judges were chosen to perform their tasks.
o      These examples are enough to show that election is not a new concept found in the New Testament but is found throughout the scriptures.

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