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Spiritual Blessings in Christ

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by KenH, Apr 22, 2024.

  1. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

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    Now friends, look where the blessing is: "Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." Our justification by grace and acceptance with God is only to be found where it is treasured up in Christ. You cannot find it in yourselves. It has pleased the Father that in the Lord Jesus Christ all fullness should dwell for every poor, sensible soul who is brought by God the Spirit to confess his guilt and misery, feel his need, and have earnest desires, hungerings and thirstings after Christ's justifying righteousness. The Lord brings his people to know that in his solemn presence they are altogether as an unclean thing, and that all their doings and righteousness are as filthy rags. They find that when they would do good evil is present with them; that the good they would they do not, while the evil they would not that they do.

    So that the poor soul who is brought more and more to feel his own evils, and to see that he has nothing in self to glory in, but that he is as an unclean thing before the Lord, will be led by the Holy Spirit to discover that his justification and acceptance is treasured up in a precious Christ; and he will burst out in the language of the church of old, "Surely shall one say, in the Lord have I righteousness and strength"; and again, "In the Lord shall all the seed of Israel be justified and shall glory." Our justification, our acceptance and our glory before a holy God is in the Lord Jesus Christ. Boasting is excluded on every side. Hence the apostle says, "To declare at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him who believes in Jesus. Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? No, but by the law of faith."

    This is the way, my friends, whereby we are considered just and accepted in Jesus Christ. "Be it known unto you, therefore, men and brethren, that through this Man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins; and by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses." The righteousness of Christ is imputed to the poor sinner. "Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord imputes not iniquity." The poor sinner's unrighteousness is washed away in the atoning blood of the Lamb; he is constituted righteous in the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my friends, as we stand on the Rock of Ages, sin is done away; we are clad in the Redeemer's righteousness, and stand complete and accepted in the sight of Jehovah. But it is in Christ, my friends. And blessed be God that it is there.

    But the children of God need not merely to know the doctrine of justification and acceptance in Christ; they need to have a blessed revelation of their interest in it powerfully made known to their heart and conscience by the Holy Spirit. Now the enjoyment of this is by faith; hence the apostle says, "Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." "The just shall live by faith." But faith is the gift of God. May the Lord enable you, poor soul, to look from yourself to a precious Christ, to see that his perfect obedience is yours. May the Lord enable you to look to the atonement of Christ on the cross, whereby your sins are done away. May the Lord enable you, poor sinner, to look to Jesus, and see the curse removed, sin atoned for, righteousness brought in, heaven opened, death abolished, and life and immortality brought to light. Wherever the blessed Spirit has begun the work of grace in the heart of a poor sinner, he will land that precious soul in immortal bliss and blessedness at last.

    - excerpt from a sermon preached by John Kershaw on Ephesians 1:3 at Zoar Chapel in London on April 18, 1848.
     
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