Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | April 8, 2019

“Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall.”

Today’s devotion comes from Luke 22:54-65.  Here is a link to this Scripture – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+22&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“Having arrested Him, they led Him away and brought Him to the house of the high priest;  but Peter was following at a distance.  After they had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard and had sat down together, Peter was sitting among them.  And a servant-girl, seeing him as he sat in the firelight and looking intently at him, said, “This man was with Him too.”  But he denied it, saying, “Woman, I do not know Him.”  A little later, another saw him and said, “You are one of them too!”  But Peter said, “Man, I am not!”  After about an hour had passed, another man began to insist, saying, “Certainly this man also was with Him, for he is a Galilean too.”  But Peter said, “Man, I do not know what you are talking about.”  Immediately, while he was still speaking, a rooster crowed.  The Lord turned and looked at Peter.  And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how He had told him, “Before a rooster crows today, you will deny Me three times.”  And he went out and wept bitterly.”  Luke 22:54-62.

———–

“Peter *said to Him, “Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You.” All the disciples said the same thing too.”  Matthew 26:35.

And, as we read today’s Scripture, we may think the same thing, that we would never deny Jesus.

But, we can deny Jesus through our actions as well as through our words.

Do we deny Jesus by neglecting to be with Him and His people through attending church?

Do we deny Jesus by our behavior which is too much like the world around us?

“Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall.”  1 Corinthians 10:12.

But, there is hope!

“No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man;  and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.”   1 Corinthians 10:13.

“My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin.  And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous;”  1 John 2:1.

“Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded permission to sift you like wheat;  but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail;  and you, when once you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.”  Luke 22:31-32.

Other doctrine trusts in its own wisdom, its own alleged free-will, its own strength, and its own works.

But, Reformed Doctrine trusts in God and His “Preservation of the Saints”, the “P” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation.

Consider the following articles from the Canons of Dordt in the section titled FIFTH HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of the Perseverance of the Saints.

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.

Article 9.  Of this preservation of the elect to salvation, and of their perseverance in the faith, true believers for themselves may and ought to obtain assurance according to the measure of their faith, whereby they arrive at the certain persuasion, that they ever will continue true and living members of the church;  and that they experience forgiveness of sins, and will at last inherit eternal life.

“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely;  and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.”  1 Thessalonians 5:23-24.

“Finally, brethren, rejoice, be made complete, be comforted, be like-minded, live in peace;  and the God of love and peace will be with you.  Greet one another with a holy kiss.  All the saints greet you.

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you all.”  2 Corinthians 13:11-14.


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