Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | February 20, 2019

The LORD your God is a “victorious warrior” Who saves all of His elect.  “He will exult over you with joy”.  

Today’s devotion comes from Luke 15:1-7.

“Now all the tax collectors and the sinners were coming near Him to listen to Him.  Both the Pharisees and the scribes began to grumble, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.”

So He told them this parable, saying, “What man among you, if he has a hundred sheep and has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open pasture and go after the one which is lost until he finds it?  When he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing.  And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’  I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.”  Luke 15:1-7.

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The LORD your God is a “victorious warrior” Who saves all of His elect.  “He will exult over you with joy”.  

“The LORD your God is in your midst,
A victorious warrior.
He will exult over you with joy,
He will be quiet in His love,
He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.”  Zephaniah 3:17.

In sharp contrast to God who is like a victorious warrior, we are like sheep.  We are nervous and skittish.  We only care about the general conditions of the pasture.  We couldn’t care less if one of the other sheep wanders off.  All we care about is that there are no wolves in the pasture and that there is plenty of grass to eat and still waters to drink.

Today, we learn about God’s view as the Good Shepherd.  God cares most about not losing one of His sheep:  “there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.”  And, we know that God does not lose one of His sheep.

“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me;  and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish;  and no one will snatch them out of My hand.  My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all;  and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.”  John 10:27-29.

Total Perfect Triumph!

“9 “Remember the former things long past,
For I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is no one like Me,
10 Declaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things which have not been done,
Saying, ‘My purpose will be established,
And I will accomplish all My good pleasure’;
11 Calling a bird of prey from the east,
The man of My purpose from a far country.
Truly I have spoken;  truly I will bring it to pass.
I have planned it, surely I will do it.”  Isaiah 46:9-11.

“The LORD has established His throne in the heavens,
And His sovereignty rules over all.”  Psalm 103:19.

Article 8.  For this was the sovereign counsel, and most gracious will and purpose of God the Father, that the quickening and saving efficacy of the most precious death of his Son should extend to all the elect, for bestowing upon them alone the gift of justifying faith, thereby to bring them infallibly to salvation:  that is, it was the will of God, that Christ by the blood of the cross, whereby he confirmed the new covenant, should effectually redeem out of every people, tribe, nation, and language, all those, and those only, who were from eternity chosen to salvation, and given to him by the Father;  that he should confer upon them faith, which together with all the other saving gifts of the Holy Spirit, he purchased for them by his death;  should purge them from all sin, both original and actual, whether committed before or after believing;  and having faithfully preserved them even to the end, should at last bring them free from every spot and blemish to the enjoyment of glory in his own presence forever.  SECOND HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of the Death of Christ, and the Redemption of Men Thereby of Canons of Dordt.

Other doctrine places its hope on the lost sheep finding its way back home.

But, Reformed doctrine places its hope on the Good Shepherd.

Consider the following from the FIFTH HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of the Perseverance of the Saints of the Canons of Dordt.

Article 3.  By reason of these remains of indwelling sin, and the temptations of sin and of the world, those who are converted could not persevere in a state of grace, if left to their own strength.  But God is faithful, who having conferred grace, mercifully confirms, and powerfully preserves them herein, even to the end.

Article 8.  Thus, it is not in consequence of their own merits, or strength, but of God’s free mercy, that they do not totally fall from faith and grace, nor continue and perish finally in their backslidings;  which, with respect to themselves, is not only possible, but would undoubtedly happen;  but with respect to God, it is utterly impossible, since his counsel cannot be changed, nor his promise fail, neither can the call according to his purpose be revoked, nor the merit, intercession and preservation of Christ be rendered ineffectual, nor the sealing of the Holy Spirit be frustrated or obliterated.

Despite our tendency, we should also not place our hope in the general condition of our city, state, nation, or world.  

Consider righteous Lot.  Lot was in the midst of the wicked cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.  God did not improve nor preserve the condition of the wicked cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.  God delayed their destruction for His purpose of the salvation and other good of His elect, but God reduced those cities to ashes after rescuing righteous Lot.

“and if He condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction by reducing them to ashes, having made them an example to those who would live ungodly lives thereafter;  and if He rescued righteous Lot, oppressed by the sensual conduct of unprincipled men (for by what he saw and heard that righteous man, while living among them, felt his righteous soul tormented day after day by their lawless deeds), then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment,”  2 Peter 2:6-9.

“The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”  2 Peter 3:9.

God accomplishes all of His good pleasure.  God saves all of His elect.  Total Perfect Triumph!

Throughout Scripture, we see that “Salvation belongs to the LORD”.  Psalm 3:8.

“But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, “LET HIM WHO BOASTS, BOAST IN THE LORD.”  1 Corinthians 1:30-31.

“This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day.”  John 6:39.

“For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;  and these whom He predestined, He also called;  and these whom He called, He also justified;  and these whom He justified, He also glorified.”  Romans 8:29-30.


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