Monthly Archives: July 2009

I Love God’s Electing Love for the Church

I am glad to be blogging again after a long break due to vacation and vacation catch up. But let’s continue in the series “I Love the Church” with “I Love God’s Electing Love for the Church.”  Election is not supposed to be debated but celebrated (Ephesians 1:3-6).  Sunday’s sermon on election only confirmed in my heart how gracious God is to choose rebels like us to make up the church.  My rebellion could not be stronger and his love could not be clearer than when before time began, highlighting that his electing love was not based upon anything in the creation, God stopped my hell-bent rebellion and in his strong mutiny-crushing love, he chose me for his own.  This is the story for everyone in Christ’s church. Below are a few quotes from Sunday that might stir us to stand amazed at his electing love and live empowered to love others because of his mercy.

John Calvin teaches us to delight in mystery and calls us to affirm what God’s word affirms and no more.

– taken from Sam Storms book, Chosen For Life, p180-181

“Nothing is taught [in Scripture] but what is expedient to know….we must guard against depriving believers of anything disclosed about predestination in Scripture, lest we seem either wickedly to defraud them of the blessing of their God or to accuse and scoff at the Holy Spirit for having published what is in any way profitable to suppress.  Let us, I say, permit the Christian man to open his mind and ears to every utterance of God directed to him, provided it be with such restraint that when the Lord closes his holy lips, he also shall at once close the way to inquiry.”

JI Packer’s “Election: God Chooses His Own”

-from Concise Theology: A Guide to Historic Christian Beliefs

The verb elect means “to select, or choose out.” The biblical doctrine of election is that before Creation God selected out of the human race, foreseen as fallen, those whom he would redeem, bring to faith, justify, and glorify in and through Jesus Christ (Rom. 8:28-39; Eph. 1:3-14; 2 Thess. 2:13-14; 2 Tim. 1:9-10). This divine choice is an expression of free and sovereign grace, for it is unconstrained and unconditional, not merited by anything in those who are its subjects. God owes sinners no mercy of any kind, only condemnation; so it is a wonder, and matter for endless praise, that he should choose to save any of us; and doubly so when his choice involved the giving of his own Son to suffer as sin-bearer for the elect (Rom. 8:32).

CJ Mahaney

-from a sermon entitled, “Sovereign Grace”

If you perish hell blame yourself for it is entirely your fault. But if you should make it to heaven credit God for that is entirely his work.

Charles Spurgeon

-also pulled from CJ Mahaney’s sermon entitled, “Sovereign Grace”

I believe the doctrine of election because had God not chosen me I would never had chosen him, and I am sure he chose me before I was born or else he never would have chosen me afterward.  And he must have elected me for reasons unknown to me for I never could find any reason myself why he should have looked upon me with special love.

At this point I agree with the great hymn, “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross” when it calls us to respond,  “…Love so amazing, so divine demands my soul, my life, my all.”

Loving and Spreading God’s love with you

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I Love the Children of the Church

As I think about TCC, my heart is filled with love.  Treasuring Christ Church is my family and I enjoy caring for them with Pastor Travis and the many other humble, gifted leaders in our church.  Even if one person reads my blog it is worth communicating to them my love for Christ’s church and how thankful I am for His grace in my life to allow me to be a part of God’s transforming work here at TCC.  I want to continue a series entitled, “I love the church” with a note on my love for the children of the church.  Now, although many of the kids are not officially members of Treasuring Christ Church I praise God for granting to us as a church the opportunity to care for and love the children of TCC.   Here are a few ways our lives are impacting and impacted by these children:

1.  Children display the humility and eagerness of faith. (Matthew 19:14)

2. When we serve the kids in nursery (praying over them, playing with them, reading to them , memorizing Scripture with them, singing with them, etc.) we are serving Jesus. (Matthew 18:1-5)

3.  Loving our children is a great opportunity to simplify what we know about God which almost always is as clarifying for us as it is for them.

4.  Caring for children is not an “in the spotlight” job and therefore allows us to serve for the eyes of God alone. (Matthew 6:1-4)

5. A child’s joy, care-free play, and funny phrases are good medicine for our hearts.

6. For the humble, loving other’s children can teach you how to be a better parent whether you are a grandparent, one with several kids, one with no kids in the home or a single because you can spot strengths in some kids that you can nurture in your kids.

7. Intentionally interacting with children provides godly examples for children to follow. (My son Elijah loves Blake Hollander because he is an “Eagle Scout.”  I love that my son has godly examples, like Blake, to look to in the church).

8. Children serve as mirrors into our hearts when they repeat our words, mimic our actions, and ask us why we do certain things the way we do them.  This is God’s design to refine our speech, life, love, faith and purity and he uses kids regularly to do this.

9. Children are quicker to overcome diversity.  I love the innocence, especially in younger children,with which black children and white children, rich and poor all mingle together with such joy and ease being oblivious to the potential tension.  Oh that we might put aside prejudice and pursue one another.

10. Children are so cute.  And many times can serve as joy ignitors.

11. Children are sinners in cute bodies.  This reminds us of the deceitfulness of sin.  Sin regularly comes in pretty and tempting packages.  When my cute little Mercy steals a toy from a child and smiles so carelessly when it is in her possession and yet screams so violently when it is taken away, we are awakened again to the aggression of sin and Satan and our need (and theirs) for a Savior is once again exposed.

12. Seeing the birth or adoption of children in our church should awaken glad expectation and astonished celebration at our great God who is still in the business of powerfully creating new birth in the lives of sinners and spiritually adopting sinful orphans into His glorious family.

These are but a few. Feel free to add more.  I love the children of the Treasuring Christ Church.

Laboring with you to be an example for our children and to learn from our children for their joy in Christ and ours.