Elder's Prayer - November 4, 2018
Please find below the notes from the Elder's Prayer this past Sunday.
We just sang praise to the Lord because, as the song says in verse 2, God’s love is seen in Christ the Son, the Servant King, who left behind his glorious throne to pay the ransom for His own.
I have to believe that when Horatius Bonar penned that verse back in the 1800’s he must have had in mind, among other Scripture, Romans 5:8-9 when Paul states:
"but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God."
Our salvation is a work of God, motivated by his love-because of his mercy and grace, and despite our sin, we were ransomed, redeemed-saved from the wrath of God-by the all-sufficient atoning work of our Lord.
What does this mean in practical terms in each of our lives?
As Peter says in his first epistle-He bore our sins in his body on a tree that we might die to sin and live to righteousness-because by his wounds, we’ve have been healed.
If you are a Christian, you know-because of God’s Spirit indwelling you-that you are a new creation-you’re different than you once were-you have a new heart, new desires.
Those of us in Christ increasingly die to sin and live to righteousness-not perfection, not on this earth-but increasingly growing in knowledge and willing obedience to God-from the heart.
And we know this in our hearts because it is God’s Spirit at work in us-indwelling us.
If you are a Christian, you have observed change in tangible ways in your own life. Daily you die to self and increasingly grow in love for God and those he has sovereignly put in your life.
Let’s give thanks to God today, as we should every day, for the work he began in us when he redeemed us and the assurance we have when we increasingly understand how he is conforming us to the image of his Son
Lord, we marvel at your great love, that would motivate you to redeem us from our enslavement to sin and the wrath we deserve.
And not only that, you transform us from self-focused lovers of self, to lovers of you and others.
Your word tells us that it is by grace we have been saved through faith. And it is not our own doing; but it is your gift to us... we are your workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which you prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them-daily.
I pray we would be quick to recognize and give thanks on those occasions when we see the evidence of your Spirit working in us-when we respond in new, God-glorifying ways to the challenges we face living in this fallen world.
Where once we may have responded sinfully-perhaps angrily or anxiously- we now increasingly see ourselves responding patiently and kindly- evidence of the transforming work of the Gospel in our lives.
Thank you, Lord.
Thank you that we can know, and be increasingly assured of our salvation, because it is you who works in us, both to will and to work for your good pleasure-transforming us through your Son, who is himself the author and perfecter of our faith- and conforming us to his image.
Lord, may we never lose sight of that. May we be increasingly willing and thankful participants in the work you are doing in our lives-never taking the glory for ourselves, but rather always giving it to you-in all that we do.
Thank you for drawing us ever closer through our humble obedience.
It is in your son’s name we pray, Amen.