LOOKING TO PRAISE AND WORSHIP JESUS THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. 18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known].

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Holy Manna

John 6:58 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live forever.

Praise God that just as he feeds the birds and everything else with his bounty, he provides the human race with all that is necessary to sustain their physical life. How much more are sinners blessed for the holy manna that is provided for their spiritual lives. Jesus provided this spiritual food with his own flesh on the cross of Calvary. Those sinners that partake of this free bread receive the gift of eternal life. Jesus said: John 6:51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.

Free holy manna is indeed a wonderful and glorius thing for our meditation. This meditation will lead sinners to acknowledge the wonderful theological principles that are contained in the great hymn listed below. No matter what our worldly circumstances are with ill health and troubles, believers are blessed beyond measure and should rest in the fact that, when we are called to heaven, we will sit at Christ’s table and be served sweet manna all around. Praise God for the peace and joy this brings.

Brethren We Have Met To Worship
Words by: George Atkins

Brethren, we have met to worship and adore the Lord our God;
Will you pray with all your power, while we try to preach the Word?
All is vain unless the Spirit of the Holy One comes down;
Brethren, pray, and holy manna will be showered all around.

Brethren, see poor sinners round you slumbering on the brink of woe;
Death is coming, hell is moving, can you bear to let them go?
See our fathers and our mothers, and our children sinking down;
Brethren, pray and holy manna will be showered all around.

Sisters, will you join and help us? Moses’ sister aided him;
Will you help the trembling mourners who are struggling hard with sin?
Tell them all about the Savior, tell them that He will be found;
Sisters, pray, and holy manna will be showered all around.

Is there here a trembling jailer, seeking grace, and filled with tears?
Is there here a weeping Mary, pouring forth a flood of tears?
Brethren, join your cries to help them; sisters, let your prayers abound;
Pray, Oh pray that holy manna may be scattered all around.

Let us love our God supremely, let us love each other, too;
Let us love and pray for sinners, till our God makes all things new.
Then He’ll call us home to Heaven, at His table we’ll sit down;
Christ will gird Himself and serve us with sweet manna all around.

8 Comments:

Blogger Maalie said...

>Praise God that just as he feeds the birds and everything else with his bounty

And praise also that there is a surplus productivity of them in order to feed the birds of prey higher in the food chain that eat them.

January 29, 2008 10:29 AM

 
Blogger mark pierson said...

John 6:51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.

January 29, 2008 11:22 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

When the fall of man occurred in the Garden of Eden, the entire creation was subjected to decay, death, calamities and futility. The animal kingdom did not willingly participate in the fall, but it suffered as a result of the sin of Adam. (Romans 8:20)

In spite of this God through his common grace has supplied a bounty for the animal kingdom to survive. This decay, death, and destruction will be reversed when God's kingdom is fulfilled.

January 29, 2008 11:31 AM

 
Blogger mark pierson said...

Repentance

Does the sinner need to repent in order to be saved?
by Colin Maxwell

I'm afraid so!. Not the best of news to any who want to enjoy Heaven while they can hold unto their sins, but this is how it stands in the Bible, and we fail to preach the whole truth if we either neglect it or (worse still) oppose it.

Repentance in the Bible is a change of mind, induced by faith in the gospel message, but it is a change of mind that will lead to a change of direction. IOW, you can talk all you want about a change of mind, but if it doesn't work its way through to the behaviour, then your words are empty words.

Does this leave us open to the charge that we are preaching salvation by faith plus works? Are we asking the sinner (say the drunkard) to give up his sins in order to be saved? Are we preaching reformation of character as part of the mix that leads to forgiveness of sins? We say, like Paul, at this point not only "In no wise" but "God forbid!" The sinner has no power in himself to forsake his sins in any Evangelical sense of the word. He might be able to swap his sins i.e. cease being a drunkard and become a good living Pharisee, but he cannot forsake them in the manner demanded by the word of God. Furthermore, unless the Spirit of God has being moving upon his heart, the sinner has no desire to forsake them. They are the darling sins of his heart. He loves their darkness rather than the light, for his deeds are evil (John 3:19) Only the goodness of God will lead him to repentance (Romans 2:4) and such must be given unto him (Acts 11:18) While he has a responsibility to forsake his sins - it is never right to stay in sin - yet that same sin has chained him and so he needs nothing less than the mighty power of God's saving truth to set him free (John 8:32-36)

Repentance preachers are not looking for reformation of character. We do not tell (say) drunkards to go away, clean up their lives and come back when they have been off the drink for 3 or 6 months (zero tolerance) and then (and only then) we will explain John 3:16 to them.

A sinner hears the gospel. He learns that there is a hell for sins and a Saviour in Jesus Christ etc., Being convicted of his sin by the power of the Holy Spirit, he expresses his desire to be saved. We ask him: "Saved from what?" We are not looking here for theologically precise answers. He is a sinner from off the street and not necessarily a doctrinaire. We are not going to nitpick his language, but we need to know why he has expressed a desire to be saved. If he just wants to be saved from the hell below, but not from the hell within (i.e. the chains and bondage of sin) then he has not properly understood the gospel. That might (at least partly) be our fault. Have we faithfully preached Christ as the Saviour of His people from their sins? (Matthew 1:21) Did we emphasise in our message that Jesus Christ is the One Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. (Titus 2:14) If not, then we must make up the slack here as we chat with this interested sinner. We lay it down the line, gently but firmly, that he cannot know peace with God if he is still living in rebellion as a sinner. God does not save His people in their sins, much less for their sins. Is he willing to then forsake these sins that alienate him from God and is he willing to cast the destiny of his soul upon the finished work of Jesus Christ as the only hope of his salvation? He affirms. We do not (as said) send him away for a trial period. There and then, we point him to the Lamb of God in faith. If the Spirit of God has truly being doing His work, that sinner's life will be changed for ever - not by mere outward, man produced reformation, but by the mighty power of the gospel that automatically makes those that be in Christ to be new creatures. There is no more merit in repentance than there is faith. Neither of them earn salvation for the sinner, but both are required to bring him salvation. Christ does not pardon those who are living in brazen rebellion.

This is the old time gospel, as proclaimed by old time Evangelicals, both Calvinists and non Calvinists alike. Listen to J. Vernon McGee's comments on Ephesians 2:8-9
"Someone else objects, 'Maybe I'm not given the gift of faith.' That's not your problem. Your problem is that you don't want to give up your sins which the Bible condemns. Whenever you get sick of your sins, when you want to turn from yourself, from the things of the world, from religion, from everything the Bible condemns, and turn to Christ, then you will be given faith. You can trust Him."

Let me take another man, John R Rice, whose books sold in the millions:
“To repent literally means to have a change of mind or spirit toward God and toward sin. It means to turn from your sins, earnestly, with all your heart, and trust in Jesus Christ to save you. You can see, then, how the man who believes in Christ repents and the man who repents believes in Christ. The jailer repented when he turned from sin to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ” (John R. Rice, What Must I Do to Be Saved?, 1940).

There is no shortage of quotes from the Calvinist side of the Evangelical fence, but I'll let these quotes from John Calvin suffice:

"The Hebrew word for repentance denotes conversion or return. The Greek word signifies change of mind and intention." (Institutes 3:3:5) Having defined repentance, Calvin continues elsewhere, "We never obtain forgiveness without repentance."

So, we answer that the sinner must repent to enjoy salvation. If he does not repent, then he will perish (Luke 13:5) The perishing of Luke 13:3-5 is not some temporary, earthly disaster. The wicked do not always reap their sins in this life. This fact has often caused great problems to many of God's people - David in Psalm 73 comes to mind. They often die in the greatest of prosperity and live long, pleasure filled years. The Lord Jesus in Luke 13:3-5 is referring to the burning hell of Luke 16:19-31 from where (significantly) the Rich Man sought Lazarus to be sent to preach repentance to his five remaining brothers, lest they too come to place of torment.

January 29, 2008 1:08 PM

 
Blogger Baptist Girl said...

Jazz Great Post!
Our Lord is the Great Provider, we never go without what we need and no one can understand this unless the Lord has taken the blinders off. My prayer is for the sinner to be able to come to the table and share in the Glory of God.

Cristina

January 30, 2008 7:08 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Cristina,
Thanks. I am on #10 of a series of around 20 that are all being posted at my place. I may do some more of them here....

January 30, 2008 8:21 AM

 
Blogger Susan said...

This is one of my favorite hymns that we sing at our Reformed church. I had never heard it before we started attending this church.

I used to be confused about the last line - that Christ will serve us, when I thought we would be worshipping and serving Him in all eternity (which of course, we will be), but I didn't realize that He will serve us as well. (I later saw this Scripture verse in my Bible, but can't locate it this minute on e-sword, but it's in there.)

January 30, 2008 8:34 AM

 
Blogger donsands said...

"but I didn't realize that He will serve us as well."

Luke 12:37 says the the lord will return from the wedding feast, and will make them sit for meat, and then serve them.

Not sure how this unpacks really. Interesting verse. Can't imagine the Lord Jesus serving us in heaven either.

Perhaps indirectly with angels as His servants, and ours?

January 30, 2008 11:04 AM

 

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