Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | March 22, 2020

“and whatever is not from faith is sin.”

Today’s devotion comes from Romans 14:18-23.

“For he who in this way serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men.  So then we pursue the things which make for peace and the building up of one another.  Do not tear down the work of God for the sake of food.  All things indeed are clean, but they are evil for the man who eats and gives offense.  It is good not to eat meat or to drink wine, or to do anything by which your brother stumbles.  The faith which you have, have as your own conviction before God.  Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves.  But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith;  and whatever is not from faith is sin.”  Romans 14:18-23.

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We fall into temptation when we are confronted by something new, that we usually do not do.  We feel forced to try it.  We apply our own earthly wisdom to justify it so that we can do it.  We do not take time to pray to God for heavenly wisdom and for His will to be done.  We just quickly do it, more concerned about man than God.

But, there is hope!

God gives us faith, and God preserves us.

Through God’s grace, we act out of that faith that He gives us.  “for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.”  Philippians 2:13.

Other doctrine trusts in man’s wisdom, man’s faith, and man’s alleged free-will.

But, Reformed Doctrine trusts in God’s wisdom, the faith that God gives, and God giving us the will to do His will.

Other doctrine trusts in man’s perseverance of the saints.

But, Reformed Doctrine trusts in God’s preservation of the saints.

Consider what the Canons of Dordt states.

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. 

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.  FIFTH HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of the Perseverance of the Saints.

“For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised.

FOR YET IN A VERY LITTLE WHILE,
HE WHO IS COMING WILL COME, AND WILL NOT DELAY.
BUT MY RIGHTEOUS ONE SHALL LIVE BY FAITH;
AND IF HE SHRINKS BACK, MY SOUL HAS NO PLEASURE IN HIM.

But we are not of those who shrink back to destruction, but of those who have faith to the preserving of the soul.”  Hebrews 10:36-39.


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