Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | March 24, 2021

“God is able to raise people even from the dead”

Today’s devotion comes from Hebrews 11:17-19.

“By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son;  it was he to whom it was said, “IN ISAAC YOUR DESCENDANTS SHALL BE CALLED.”  He considered that God is able to raise people even from the dead, from which he also received him back as a type.”  Hebrews 11:17-19.  

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By faith, Abraham believed that “God is able to raise people even from the dead”.

By faith, we too believe that “God is able to raise people even from the dead”.

“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me;  and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”  Galatians 2:20.

“Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death?  Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.  For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin;  for he who has died is freed from sin.”  Romans 6:3-7.

“Even so Abraham BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS RECKONED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS.  Therefore, be sure that it is those who are of faith who are sons of Abraham.  The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “ALL THE NATIONS WILL BE BLESSED IN YOU.”  So then those who are of faith are blessed with Abraham, the believer.”  Galatians 3:6-9.

And, today’s Scripture also gives us the basis of our position in faith.  “IN ISAAC YOUR DESCENDANTS SHALL BE CALLED.” 

“nor are they all children because they are Abraham’s descendants, but:  “THROUGH ISACCS YOUR DESCENDANTS WILL BE NAMED.”  That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants.”  Romans 9:7-8.

In other words, we receive faith and all the other saving gifts through God’s promise.  Let us continue reading the following Scripture.

“For this is the word of promise:  “AT THIS TIME I WILL COME, AND SARAH SHALL HAVE A SON.”  And not only this, but there was Rebekah also, when she had conceived twins by one man, our father Isaac;  for though the twins were not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, so that God’s purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works but because of Him who calls, it was said to her, “THE OLDER WILL SERVE THE YOUNGER.”  Just as it is written, “JACOB I LOVED, BUT ESAU I HATED.”

What shall we say then?  There is no injustice with God, is there?  May it never be!  For He says to Moses, “I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY, AND I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION.”  So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.”  Romans 9:9-16. 

Consider the following from the Canons of Dordt in the section titled FIRST HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of Divine Predestination. 

Article 7.  Election is the unchangeable purpose of God, whereby, before the foundation of the world, he hath out of mere grace, according to the sovereign good pleasure of his own will, chosen, from the whole human race, which had fallen through their own fault, from their primitive state of rectitude, into sin and destruction, a certain number of persons to redemption in Christ, whom he from eternity appointed the Mediator and Head of the elect, and the foundation of Salvation.

This elect number, though by nature neither better nor more deserving than the others, but with them involved in one common misery, God hath decreed to give to Christ, to be saved by him, and effectually to call and draw them to his communion by his Word and Spirit, to bestow upon them true faith, justification and sanctification;  and having powerfully preserved them in the fellowship of his Son, finally, to glorify them for the demonstration of his mercy, and for the praise of his glorious grace;  …   

Article 9.  This election was not founded upon foreseen faith, and the obedience of faith, holiness, or any other good quality of disposition in man, as the pre-requisite, cause or condition on which it depended;  but men are chosen to faith and to the obedience of faith, holiness, etc., therefore election is the fountain of every saving good;  from which proceed faith, holiness, and the other gifts of salvation, and finally eternal life itself, as its fruits and effects, according to that of the apostle:  “He hath chosen us (not because we were) but that we should be holy, and without blame, before him in love,”  Ephesians 1:4.

Article 11.  And as God himself is most wise, unchangeable, omniscient and omnipotent, so the election made by him can neither be interrupted nor changed, recalled or annulled;  neither can the elect be cast away, nor their number diminished.

“And you brethren, like Isaac, are children of promise.”  Galatians 4:28. 

“This is the promise which He Himself made to us:  eternal life.”  1 John 2:25.


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