The Whole Story

  But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.  That according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. I Corinthians 1: 30-31

     This is the whole story of salvation in these two verses. 

This first, “But of Him” – He is the beginning, source, and wellspring of salvation.  Salvation is of the Lord.  “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ; according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:  Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself according to the good pleasure of his will (Ephesians 1: 3-5).

     ” . . . are ye in Christ Jesus.”  God outside of Christ is a consuming fire.  He told His disciples, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man cometh unto the Father but by me (John 14: 6).”  Those called unto Christ and brought into a vital union of faith in time were made  provision for in Christ before the world began.

     “who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption”  All of the means of salvation were given to us in Christ.  There are no spiritual blessings from above except in Him.  To have Christ is to have all you need (Colossians 2: 6-9).”

     “That according as it is written, He that glorieth let him glory in the Lord.”  The man who is completely saved, by God, in Christ is a man who wholly glories in God as he is manifested in His Son.  To him Christ is all.  To him there is no hope anywhere else (Acts 4: 12).”

     Oh, may God be pleased to make us such as He describes in these verses.

-Darvin Pruitt, Pastor of Grace Baptist Church, Lewisville, AR USA

What Is The Offense of the Cross of Christ?

“And I, brethren, if I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet suffer persecution?  Then is the offence of the cross ceased.” Galatians 5:11

The preaching of the cross of Jesus Christ is offensive to the natural man. We that believe look at the cross and we see grace, mercy, love, forgiveness, and hope; but this world sees a “stumbling stone and a rock of offense.” I want to look at this by asking one question:

I. What is the offense of the cross of Christ?

First, it offends the wisdom of men.  This world and its religion believe that man can by wisdom know God — that by sincere and heart-felt study, man can know His creator in such a way as to bring him to heaven. They think the preaching of the cross is foolishness and that they by wisdom understand that there are better ways to save sinners. But the preaching of the cross tells us that this message, and means, was ordained of God for the salvation of His people apart from the wisdom of this world (1Cor 1: 17-31).

Second, it is offensive to man’s ability.  This world believes that all men have “free will” in this matter of salvation. That man is the sovereign of his destiny, and he will come to Christ if all the right circumstances exist. But the preaching of the cross of Christ, tells us that no man can come to Christ unless the Father draws him (John 6:44). This is because all men are born dead in trespasses and sins, which make men both unable and unwilling to come to God by Jesus Christ. The only hope for sinners is that God the Holy Spirit quickens their dead souls to life and faith in Christ. This too is offensive to the natural man.

Third, it offends the merit of men.  All men by nature believe that they can by their will, works, and self-righteousness merit the favor of God. But the Psalmist asks, “Who shall ascend to the hill of the LORD . . ? He that hath clean hands and a pure heart . . . (Ps. 24: 2-3).” But the gospel of the cross teaches us that “there is none righteous, no not one (Rom. 3:11-20)” The gospel teaches that the only way for man to approach unto God is to have the “righteousness of God which is by the faithfulness of Jesus Christ to all them that believe (Rom 3:21-22).” This is offensive to the natural man.

Therefore, how foolish is it for men to oppose the only hope for their salvation. Though all men oppose this gospel, it shall prevail to save all of God’s elect. It will save all those who believe on Jesus Christ and see His cross as their only glory (Gal 6:14).


True Faith

True faith is in a Person. “Abraham believed God. ” Paul said, “I know Whom I have believed. ” I do not trust the finished work of Christ. I trust Him who finished the work. Faith is not believing that Christ died for me. I may believe that He died for me when it may be that He did not. Faith is believing that He in His life, death, resurrection, and Person is able to save me. Faith is a reliance upon Him! Faith is not believing a doctrine, proposition, or historical event, although all of that is involved in faith. Faith is believing a Person! Faith is not giving assent to the Truth, although it does give assent to the Truth! Living faith trusts the Living Lord. What we believe is determined by who we believe. If we believe Him, what we believe will be settled. It is impossible to believe Him and not believe sovereign grace! As Henry Mahan said, “We do not come to Christ through doctrine, we come to true doctrine through Christ.

-Todd Nibert, Pastor of Todd’s Road Grace Church, Lexington, KY USA

Our God Is A Very Present Help

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble (Psalm 46:1).

A help that is not present when we need it is of small value. The anchor which is left at home is of no use to the seaman in the hour of storm; the money which he used to have is of no worth to the debtor when a writ is out against him. Very few earthly helps could be called “very present”: they are usually far in the seeking, far in the using, and farther still when once used. But as for the Lord our God, He is present when we seek Him, present when we need Him, and present when we have already enjoyed His aid. He is more than “present,” He is very present. More present than the nearest friend can be, for He is in us in our trouble; more present than we are to ourselves, for sometimes we lack presence of mind. He is always present, effectually present, sympathetically present, and altogether present. He is present now if this is a gloomy season. Let us rest ourselves upon Him. He is our refuge, let us hide in Him; He is our strength, let us array ourselves with Him; He is our help, let us lean upon Him; He is our very present help, let us repose in Him now. We need not have a moment’s care or an instant’s fear. “The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.

-C. H. Spurgeon

Only One God

Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure. (Isaiah 46:9-10)

Friends, there is only one God.  Though there are many false gods of the imagination of men, there is only one true and living God.  And God, here by the mouth of His prophet, declares who He is, so that there is no confusion or mistaking Him for the gods of men.  God declares to us here that He is sovereign.  God tells us that He has decreed the end of all things from the beginning.  Before anything was created, God dwelling alone in eternity by Himself purposed all things that should happen in time and eternity according to the counsel of His own sovereign will.  God says, “I WILL DO ALL MY pleasure.” There is nothing that God was pleased to do that He has not done or will not do.  God cannot deny Himself, for all He is and all He does is holy and good.  

Therefore, seeing that the only true God has purposed ALL THINGS before any of them were made, who then shall prevent Him from accomplishing All His decrees?   If your god can be thwarted by the will or works of men, then your god IS NOT GOD!  Our God is sovereign in ALL THINGS! He is sovereign in the creation of the world, in the providence of time and especially in the salvation of His elect (John 6:39). So then there is nothing that shall stop Him from doing ALL His sovereign will (Daniel 4:34-35). 

Therefore, consider that it pleased the Father to elect a people to be His holy children. (Ephesians 1:3-6) It pleased the Father to give them to Jesus Christ the Son of God (John 6:36-40).  It pleased the Father that Jesus Christ should be made all their wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption (1 Corinthians 1:30-31). It pleased the Son of God to accomplish all their righteousness and give Himself a ransom for their sins (Isaiah 42:21; 1 Timothy 2:3-6). It pleased the Holy Spirit of God to come at the appointed time and give to us life and faith. And He is pleased to keep us until we are safe in heaven with Him (John 3:8-9; 2 Timothy 1:9; 1 Peter 1:3-5). This is our Sovereign God; worship Him alone for He alone is God.

-Pastor Fred Evans

God’s Saints

Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? (Matthew 7:16) 

A fig tree does not produce figs so that it may become a fig tree.  It produces figs because it is a fig tree. 

Even so does a believer in Christ produce good works; not to become a saint, but because Christ has already made Him a saint.   


Being In Christ Jesus

But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.  (1Corinthians 1:30) 

This declaration gives me four glorious things to contemplate.

First:  If it is of the eternal God that I am in Christ Jesus; then there was never a time when I was not in Him.  My birth, life and preservation were all considered according to my union with Him. God did not allow me to go too far or turn me over to myself.  But He watched over me and when it pleased Him brought me to Christ. 

Second:  If it is of God that I am in Christ Jesus than it cannot come to naught.  No principality or power can snatch me from the hands of my Savior or the hands of my Father who put me there.  Our Lord said, “My Father which gave them me is greater than all and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.” John 10: 29) 

Third:  If it is of God that I am in Christ Jesus than all that He has accomplished is for me.  There would be nothing significant about being in Christ if he were not my representative and substitute.  All of His glory, Greatness, and victory would be meaningless to me if we were not one by divine union. 

 Lastly:  If it is of God that I am in Christ Jesus then there is nothing left to glory in except the Lord.  “He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.”    

-Darvin Pruitt, Pastor of of Grace Baptist Church, Lewisville, Arkansas, USA

“Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he hath done for my soul.” Psalm 66:16

No one word can fully express all that God has done for my soul, though in general it may be described as saved. Saved! Ah, that is a grand word worthy of being written in letters of gold! A saved soul includes many things—I can only mention them: 

1. A saved soul is a God-pardoned soul. All its sins are forgiven, and its iniquities are drowned in that deluge of pardoning love that rises high above the topmost peaks of all its mountain sins!

2. A saved soul is a God-reconciled soul. Once at enmity, God and the sinner are now at peace. All differences are at an end. The prodigal sinner has been embraced and kissed by the father. The rebel has thrown down his weapons, and bent his knee to the Monarch—and the Monarch has raised him up, and with a smile of love, has put him among His children. They are at at-one-ment there.

3. A saved soul is also a sin-delivered soul. Believer, your sins are not merely forgiven—but they are done away with, put out of sight, removed from you as far as the remotest east is from the extreme west! In the eye of God, you are as guiltless as His spotless Son! “You are altogether beautiful, My love; there is no flaw in you!” Song of Songs 4:7

4. A saved soul is also a God-arrayed soul. The former blessing was a negation of guilt, this is a possession of righteousness. A righteousness, mark you, that is not capable of improvement, but it is the righteousness of God Himself! A saved soul, even to the omniscient eye of Deity, is altogether lovely and glorious, robed in the splendor of “Jehovah Tsidkenu”—”The Lord our Righteousness!”

5. A saved soul is a Heaven-entitled soul. This crowns all. Not merely am I delivered from Hell, but in my hand is placed a title-deed to eternal glory! This is no fiction or flight of imagination, but a blessed fact. Possessed by every saint, is a title to Heaven that God Himself will declare to be valid to all eternity.

-Archibald Brown

What Is A Church?

A gospel church is much more than a congregation of people assembled together for the purpose of promoting a creed and continuing the ordinances of divine worship. If we are a true Church of Christ, we have much stronger ties than the waters of baptism produce.

Every true local assembly is a miniature of the church universal, as described by the apostle Paul in the second chapter of Ephesians chapter 2. A true church is a “habitation of God through the Spirit”. It is important that we as believers be properly immersed, observe the Lord’s Supper, and hold to a sound creed. But, this is the question of great concern, “are we a habitation of God?” If not, all these other things are mere vanities of religious ritualism!

A church is a family, united by the blood of Christ. A church is a body, with Christ as its head. A church is a kingdom, under the dominion of Christ. A church is a brotherhood, established in the love of Christ. A church is a temple, built upon Christ, the foundation of the apostles and prophets.

It is our desire that the Savior’s promise will be constantly fulfilled to us as a church of Christ. – “Where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them” (Matthew 18, 20). Christ’s presence is the one thing we must have! Are we a habitation of God through the Spirit? Let us walk in love, careful that we “grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby we are sealed under the day of redemption.” Let us relentlessly beg of our God to manifest the presence of Christ as we assemble in his name, for his glory.

-Don Fortner

Salvation in Christ is Sure and Certain

How long a beggar will wait, and how eagerly he will plead, although he has no promise of alms, but only the bare chance of winning a penny from a passer-by!  How laboriously will fishers cast their nets again and again, though nothing has been taken as yet, and their only encouragement is the possibility that fish may come that way!  How desperately will men dive into the sea with the expectation of finding pearls in oyster-shells, encountering fierce monsters of the deep with the uncertain hope of being enriched!  And will not men draw near to God when their outlook is so much more bright, their expectations so much more justifiable?  As for me, I will lay down my sick soul at Christ’s feet, in sure and certain belief that he will heal me, and then I will follow Him whithersoever he goes, in calm assurance that He will lead me to His eternal kingdom and glory.

-C.H Spurgeon