Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Gospel is full of wonder

It is a wonder, that our words are so inadequate to express, that God should have looked upon those who have provoked his anger with eternal saving love.

It is a wonder that this love was not dependent on their loving him, obeying him, choosing him, but was free, and full, and flowed from his own gracious character.

It is a wonder that this love should prove so costly to him. This love for sinners came at the cost of his own beloved eternal Son.

It is a wonder, not so much that he loves us at all, but that he loves us in this way. The atonement was an incomparable demonstration of God's love to his people who by nature were sinful, wrath deserving, people.

No one has ever really begun to grasp the meaning of the word 'substitution' until they have felt something of the inexpressible wonder of all these things in their own heart. It is an absence of the sense of what sin deserves, of what we personally deserve by way of justice, that diminshes the glory of substitution and leads us to find salvation by other means.

It is a wonder that instead of bearing the full eternal consequences of the very sins that now see as deserving of God's righteous judgement, that we should find in Jesus One who by his suffering, as the only atoning sacrifice, has redeemed us from everlasting damnation and obtained for us the grace of God, righteousness and everlasting life.

What privileges could ever compare to those that belong to God's people? What status, what riches, what possesions, what blessings could ever be worth comparing to those found in Christ?

As Donald MacLeod has expressed it:

"They are chosen to be beneficiaries under Christ of everything that his obedience and sacrifice deserve.

They are elect to participating in everlasting life."

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