Today’s devotion comes from Mark 2:21-22.

“No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment;  otherwise the patch pulls away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear results.  No one puts new wine into old wineskins;  otherwise the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost and the skins as well;  but one puts new wine into fresh wineskins.”  Mark 2:21-22.

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An old garment in today’s Scripture is like those who are under the Law.  And, the Holy Spirit is like an unshrunk cloth.  Like unshrunk cloth is not patched on an old garment, we first were released from the Law, made like a new garment so to speak, before we were patched with the Holy Spirit so to speak, and then we start serving God in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the Law.

“But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.”  Romans 7:6.

“Therefore, my brethren, you also were made to die to the Law through the body of Christ, so that you might be joined to another, to Him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God.  For while we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were aroused by the Law, were at work in the members of our body to bear fruit for death.”  Romans 7:4-5.

The new wine in today’s Scripture is like the Holy Spirit.  Fresh wineskins are like us as new creatures in Christ.  Like new wine does not go into old wineskins, the Holy Spirit does not go into the unsaved, the unregenerated.  Like new wine goes into fresh wineskins, the Holy Spirit goes into those new creatures in Christ who are prepared to receive the Holy Spirit, and then we start serving God in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the Law.

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature;  the old things passed away;  behold, new things have come.”  2 Corinthians 5:17.

Circumcision in the following concluding Scripture represents the Law.  All that matters is being a new creation in Christ.

“For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation.”  Galatians 6:15.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 2:18-20.

“John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting;  and they *came and *said to Him, “Why do John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but Your disciples do not fast?”  And Jesus said to them, “While the bridegroom is with them, the attendants of the bridegroom cannot fast, can they?  So long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast.  But the days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast in that day.”  Mark 2:18-20.

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We rejoice and are filled with joy because we have Christ.

“… the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice.  So this joy of mine has been made full.”  John 3:29.

Be glad in the LORD and rejoice, you righteous ones;
And shout for joy, all you who are upright in heart.”  Psalm 32:11.

We rejoice and are filled with joy not only because we have Christ;  we rejoice even more and are filled with more joy because we are in Christ.

We rejoice and are filled with joy not only because have Christ;  we rejoice even more and are filled with more joy because we also have the Holy Spirit Who dwells within us and guides us into all truth and Who is our Helper.

We rejoice and are filled with joy not only because we have Christ;  we rejoice even more and are filled with more joy because we also have the Almighty God as our Faithful Father Who calls us His children, Who gives us every good gift, and Who causes all things to work together for our good.

We rejoice and are filled with joy not only because we have Heaven as our inheritance;  we rejoice and are filled with joy because we also currently possess eternal life and because the Holy Spirit gives life to our mortal bodies through the Holy Spirit Who dwells within us.

We not only rejoice and are filled with joy because we should do so;  we rejoice and are filled with joy because the Holy Spirit also bears the fruit of joy within us and Christ makes our joy full.

“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?”  Romans 8:32.

“…  For all things belong to you, whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or things present or things to come;  all things belong to you, and you belong to Christ;  and Christ belongs to God.”  1 Corinthians 3:21-23.

“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever.  Amen.”  Jude 1:24-25.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 2:14-17.

“As He passed by, He saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting in the tax booth, and He *said to him, “Follow Me!”  And he got up and followed Him.

And it *happened that He was reclining at the table in his house, and many tax collectors and sinners were dining with Jesus and His disciples;  for there were many of them, and they were following Him.  When the scribes of the Pharisees saw that He was eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they said to His disciples, “Why is He eating and drinking with tax collectors and sinners?”  And hearing this, Jesus *said to them, “It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick;  I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”  Mark 2:14-17.

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Jesus was not saying that the apparently healthy and righteous, namely, the Pharisees, scribes, and religious leaders, did not need Him.  Everyone needed Him!  But, they did not choose Him, and He did not choose them.  They trusted in their own wisdom, will, and goodness.

Likewise, there are many today who trust in their own wisdom, will, and goodness.  They may deny it, but their doctrine emphasizes man’s alleged free-will and wisdom (their choice of Christ) and/or goodness (their works) as what distinguishes them worthy of salvation.

But, Reformed Doctrine sees that Scripture classifies everyone in “Total Depravity” (the “T” of “TULIP”), in the same room as the tax collectors and sinners.  And, that the only reason why certain individuals are saved is that God elected them for salvation, “Unconditional Election” (the “U” of “TULIP”), and did everything else necessary for their salvation.

“For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.  For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom;  but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.  Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble;  but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God.  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 1:21-31.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 2:1-13.

“When He had come back to Capernaum several days afterward, it was heard that He was at home.  And many were gathered together, so that there was no longer room, not even near the door;  and He was speaking the word to them.  And they *came, bringing to Him a paralytic, carried by four men.  Being unable to get to Him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above Him;  and when they had dug an opening, they let down the pallet on which the paralytic was lying.  And Jesus seeing their faith *said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”  But some of the scribes were sitting there and reasoning in their hearts, “Why does this man speak that way?  He is blaspheming;  who can forgive sins but God alone?”  Immediately Jesus, aware in His spirit that they were reasoning that way within themselves, *said to them, “Why are you reasoning about these things in your hearts?  Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven’;  or to say, ‘Get up, and pick up your pallet and walk’?  But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—He *said to the paralytic, “I say to you, get up, pick up your pallet and go home.”  And he got up and immediately picked up the pallet and went out in the sight of everyone, so that they were all amazed and were glorifying God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this.”

And He went out again by the seashore;  and all the people were coming to Him, and He was teaching them.”   Mark 2:1-13.

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Today’s Scripture continues the theme from the previous two days’ Scriptures.  Jesus’ healing miracles were astounding and wonderful and “earthly” life-changing, but His preaching, teaching, and forgiveness of sins were far more important.  The condition of our earthly life is important, but the condition of our spiritual life is far more important.

“If your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off;  it is better for you to enter life lame, than, having your two feet, to be cast into hell, [WHERE THEIR WORM DOES NOT DIE, AND THE FIRE IS NOT QUENCHED.]”  Mark 9:45-46.

And, today’s Scripture takes it a step further by Jesus first addressing the condition of paralytic spiritual life.  “And Jesus seeing their faith *said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”  Verse 5.

And, although Jesus certainly cared about the condition of the paralytic’s earthly body, Jesus emphasized to the extreme that the paralytic’s spiritual condition was far more important by only presenting His healing as being done so that they may know (and have faith) that He had authority to forgive sins.  Notice that Jesus said nothing about His concern about the condition of the paralytic’s earthly body.

“But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—He *said to the paralytic, “I say to you, get up, pick up your pallet and go home.”  And he got up and immediately picked up the pallet and went out in the sight of everyone, …”  Verses 10-12.

To rise from the pallet is nothing in comparison to rise from the dead.

But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ.  More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death;  in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.”  Philippians 3:7-11.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 1:40-45.

“And a leper *came to Jesus, beseeching Him and falling on his knees before Him, and saying, “If You are willing, You can make me clean.”  Moved with compassion, Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him, and *said to him, “I am willing;  be cleansed.”  Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed.  And He sternly warned him and immediately sent him away, and He *said to him, “See that you say nothing to anyone;  but go, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”  But he went out and began to proclaim it freely and to spread the news around, to such an extent that Jesus could no longer publicly enter a city, but stayed out in unpopulated areas;  and they were coming to Him from everywhere.”  Mark 1:40-45.

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Jesus was compassionate.  He demonstrated His compassion by healing the leper.

But, Jesus also demonstrated His compassion by His preaching.

We remember the verse from yesterday’s devotion.  “He *said to them, “Let us go somewhere else to the towns nearby, so that I may preach there also;  for that is what I came for.”  Mark 1:38.

We see the follow-up to that verse and the primacy that Jesus placed in His preaching in today’s Scripture.  “And He sternly warned him (the leper) and immediately sent him away, and He *said to him, “See that you say nothing to anyone;  …”  Verses 43-44.

Jesus knew that His preaching would be crowded out by the demands of the people for healing which in fact did happen.  “But he (the leper) went out and began to proclaim it freely and to spread the news around, to such an extent that Jesus could no longer publicly enter a city, but stayed out in unpopulated areas;  and they were coming to Him from everywhere.”  Verse 45.

And yet how many preachers and teachers and other church leaders think they are compassionate when they focus on how they can improve man’s life on earth and do comparatively little for his spiritual life and salvation!  And, they will furthermore portray those preachers and teachers, especially Calvinists, who do focus on his spiritual life and salvation as cold and uncompassionate!

But, Scripture teaches the compassion of God demonstrated by His “Unconditional Election”, the “U” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation.

“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 9:15-16.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 1:29-39.

“And immediately after they came out of the synagogue, they came into the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John.  Now Simon’s mother-in-law was lying sick with a fever;  and immediately they *spoke to Jesus about her.  And He came to her and raised her up, taking her by the hand, and the fever left her, and she waited on them.

When evening came, after the sun had set, they began bringing to Him all who were ill and those who were demon-possessed.  And the whole city had gathered at the door.  And He healed many who were ill with various diseases, and cast out many demons;  and He was not permitting the demons to speak, because they knew who He was.

In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there.  Simon and his companions searched for Him;  they found Him, and *said to Him,  “Everyone is looking for You.”  He *said to them, “Let us go somewhere else to the towns nearby, so that I may preach there also;  for that is what I came for.”  And He went into their synagogues throughout all Galilee, preaching and casting out the demons.”   Mark 1:29-39.

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Although only One (Jesus) could heal, and although only Jesus’ healing ministry was mentioned in verses 29 to 37, and although everyone was gathered and looking for Jesus because of His healing miracles, Jesus considered His preaching His primary ministry.

“He *said to them, “Let us go somewhere else to the towns nearby, so that I may preach there also;  for that is what I came for.”  Verse 38.

And yet how many preachers and teachers and other church leaders seem much more interested in how they can improve man’s life on earth than they are interested in his spiritual life and eternal destiny!  They will deny it, but compare how much space in their publications and web sites is devoted to each area.

Reformed Doctrine proclaims the primacy of preaching and “TULIP”, the one true Gospel, the only truly good news, the doctrine of salvation. 

“For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul?  Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?”  Matthew 16:26.

Jesus said:  “… The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand;  repent and believe in the gospel.”  Mark 1:15.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 1:14-28.

“Now after John had been taken into custody, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand;  repent and believe in the gospel.”

As He was going along by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew, the brother of Simon, casting a net in the sea;  for they were fishermen.  And Jesus said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.”  Immediately they left their nets and followed Him.  Going on a little farther, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who were also in the boat mending the nets.  Immediately He called them;  and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, and went away to follow Him.

They *went into Capernaum;  and immediately on the Sabbath He entered the synagogue and began to teach.  They were amazed at His teaching;  for He was teaching them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.  Just then there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit;  and he cried out, saying, “What business do we have with each other, Jesus of Nazareth?  Have You come to destroy us?  I know who You are—the Holy One of God!”  And Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be quiet, and come out of him!”  Throwing him into convulsions, the unclean spirit cried out with a loud voice and came out of him.  They were all amazed, so that they debated among themselves, saying, “What is this?  A new teaching with authority!  He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey Him.”  Immediately the news about Him spread everywhere into all the surrounding district of Galilee.”   Mark 1:14-28.

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In today’s Scripture, Jesus demonstrated His authority in different ways.

Jesus demonstrated His authority by His teaching.  “They were amazed at His teaching;  for He was teaching them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.”  Verse 22.

Jesus demonstrated His authority by His command over men to follow Him.  “And Jesus said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.”  Immediately they left their nets and followed Him.”  Verses 17-18.

Jesus demonstrated His authority by His casting out the unclean spirit from the man.  “And Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be quiet, and come out of him!”  Throwing him into convulsions, the unclean spirit cried out with a loud voice and came out of him.”  Verses 25-26.

Elsewhere in Scripture, we see Jesus demonstrate His authority to heal and forgive sins.  “But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—then He *said to the paralytic, “Get up, pick up your bed and go home.”  And he got up and went home.”  Luke 9:6-7.

But, Jesus’s authority was not limited to these examples of His authority.  Jesus summarized His authority.  “And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.”  Matthew 28:18.

Nevertheless, other doctrine futilely denies or minimizes or hides God’s total and complete (“all”) sovereign authority to save, preferring man’s alleged free-will, man’s alleged wisdom, and man’s alleged goodness. 

But, Reformed Doctrine, recognizing God’s authority, proclaims God’s right and power shown throughout Scripture to elect people for salvation (“Unconditional Election”), to atone for all the sins of those elect (“Limited Atonement”), to command people to follow Him, even making them “fishers of men” (“Irresistible Grace”) and to preserve them (“Preservation of the Saints”), the “U”, “L”, “I” and “P” of “TULIP”, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation.  

“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever.  Amen.”  Jude 24-25.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 1:9-13.  Here is a link to this Scripture – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Mark+1&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“In those days Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan.  Immediately coming up out of the water, He saw the heavens opening, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon Him;  and a voice came out of the heavens:  “You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased.”  Mark 1:9-11.

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God is well-pleased in Christ.  And, God is well-pleased that we are in Christ.

Scripture often refers to Christians as “in Christ”.  And, it should make sense from today’s Scripture that because God is well-pleased in Christ, He is also well-pleased that we are in Christ.

Other doctrine cling to man’s alleged free-will and independence.  But, Reformed Doctrine clings to God’s Will that we are in Christ and our dependence on Christ.

Here are a few Scriptures in Ephesians chapters 1 and 2 about our being in Christ and our blessings resulting therefrom.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,”  Ephesians 1:3.

“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us.  …”  Ephesians 1:7-8.

“…  In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will,”  Ephesians 1:10-11.

“In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.”  Ephesians 1:13-14.

“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”  Ephesians 2:4-7.

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”  Ephesians 2:10.
.
remember that you were at that time separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.  But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.”  Ephesians 2:12-13.
Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | July 29, 2018

“He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 1:1-8.

“The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

As it is written in Isaiah the prophet:

“BEHOLD, I SEND MY MESSENGER AHEAD OF YOU,
WHO WILL PREPARE YOUR WAY;
THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS,
‘MAKE READY THE WAY OF THE LORD,
MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT.’”

John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.  And all the country of Judea was going out to him, and all the people of Jerusalem;  and they were being baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins.  John was clothed with camel’s hair and wore a leather belt around his waist, and his diet was locusts and wild honey.  And he was preaching, and saying, “After me One is coming who is mightier than I, and I am not fit to stoop down and untie the thong of His sandals.  I baptized you with water;  but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”  Mark 1:1-8.

—————-

Q. 53.  What dost thou believe concerning the Holy Ghost?

A.  First, that He is true and co-eternal God with the Father and the Son;  secondly, that He is also given me, to make me, by a true faith, partaker of Christ and all His benefits, that He may comfort me and abide with me for ever.  Heidelberg Catechism.

“I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever;  that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you.”  John 14:16.

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.”  John 14:16.

“But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth;  for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak;  and He will disclose to you what is to come.  He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you.”  John 16:13-15.

“For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.”  1 Corinthians 12:13.

“So the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria enjoyed peace, being built up;  and going on in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it continued to increase.”  Acts 9:31.

“In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.”  Ephesians 1:13-14.

Today’s devotion comes from Matthew 28:16-20.

“But the eleven disciples proceeded to Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had designated.  When they saw Him, they worshiped Him;  but some were doubtful.  And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.  Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you;  and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”  Matthew 28:16-20.

——————-

Great Commission or Great Confession?

Teaching them to obey?  Or, teaching them to observe?

Other doctrine view today’s Scripture as the Great Commission as if God is only setting up a plan and commissioning man to obey the plan that is dependent on man’s alleged free-will and man’s sense of duty and man’s wisdom and man’s skill in performing it.

But, Reformed Doctrine views today’s Scripture as the Great Confession of God teaching man to observe God at work Who will accomplish all of His good pleasure.

Reformed Doctrine sees “TULIP”, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation, written all over this concluding Scripture of the Book of Matthew.

Reformed Doctrine sees “Unconditional Election” and “Limited Atonement” in the part of today’s Scripture:  “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.”  In other words, God has all authority to decide whom He will save, and Christ has all authority to perform the atonement and procure all the saving gifts for God’s elect that He purchased for them by the price of His death.

Reformed Death sees “Irresistible Grace” in the part of today’s Scripture:  “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you”.  Yes, in a sense we do and obey all of that, but we do not do it and obey it based on our alleged free-will, our sense of duty, our wisdom, or our skill.  But rather, we do and obey all of that through faith in God’s “Irresistible Grace” giving us the will to do all of that and God working in us to do all of that.

Reformed Doctrine sees “Preservation of the Saints” in the part of today’s Scripture:  “and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”  As the Canons of Dordt states:  “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.”  SECOND HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of the Death of Christ, and the Redemption of Men Thereby.  In other words, because Christ is with us always, Christ preserves us causing us to persevere.”

“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.

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