“To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe” (Philippians 3:1).
We have gathered together to hear the same things. Nothing new or novel is needed. A part of the greatness of the Gospel is that the old, old, story is always new and fresh. There is nothing like that in this world. Everything in this world at some point will become old and stale. But not the Gospel!
It is always New! It is still thrilling to hear of the character of the Living God, and how that salvation is of the Lord. Salvation is of the Father when He elected a people in Christ before time began. This election was unconditional! Nothing in us that moved Him to choose us! Salvation is of the Son in redemption. Before time, He stood as the Surety of the elect and took full responsibility for their salvation. He came to this earth as their representative, kept the law for them, died to pay for their sins, and was raised because of their justification. Truly, He is All in salvation.
Salvation is of the Spirit in regeneration. God the Holy Spirit comes in invincible power and gives life to those the Father chose and the Son redeemed so that they believe the old, old story. The Gospel becomes good news indeed. They are given a new nature that loves God and perseveres in the faith, being preserved by the Spirit of God.
Paul said the repetition of it was “not grievous.” It only becomes grievous when you do not hear as a sinner! When we do not hear as a sinner, we have left our first love, and have fallen into a lukewarm state. Heavenly manna has become light bread. But if we hear as a sinner, the same things are not old and stale, but good news from a far country! Paul adds, “For you this is safe.” This only is safe. Any new message or method is treacherous! But the “same things” are safe.
-Pastor Todd Nibert of Todds Road Grace Church, Lexington, KY USA