Monthly Archives: April 2014

SANCTIFYING THE ORDINARY, Pt 1

Sanctifying the Ordinary, A. W. Tozer

“A Christian poet of a bygone generation wrote a rather long hymn around a single idea: You can, by three little words, turn every common act of your life into an offering acceptable to God. The words are “For Thy sake.”

The hymn is no longer familiar to the Christian public. Its form is rather old-fashioned and its mood foreign to the psychology of the busy believers who scurry about so nervously these days. Scarcely one in ten thousand of them would have the patience to read it if it were placed in their hands; yet its simple message is so wonderful that it should never be allowed to be lost. Rather it should be rescued from oblivion and given back to the sons of the kingdom as a precious treasure they can ill afford longer to neglect.

Today more than ever we Christians need to learn how to sanctify the ordinary. This is a blase generation. People have been over stimulated to the place where their nerves are jaded and their tastes corrupted. Natural things have been rejected to make room for things artificial. The sacred has been secularized, the holy vulgarized and worship converted into a form of entertainment. A dopey, bleary-eyed generation seeks constantly for some new excitement powerful enough to bring a thrill to its worn-out and benumbed sensibilities. So many wonders have been discovered or invented that nothing on earth is any longer wonderful. Everything is common and almost everything boring.

Like it or not, that is the world in which we find ourselves and we are charged with the responsibility to live soberly, righteously and godly right in the middle of it. The danger is that we allow ourselves to be too much affected by the degenerate tastes and low views of the Hittites and Jebusites among whom we dwell and so learn the ways of the nations, to our own undoing, as Israel did before us.

When the whole moral and psychological atmosphere is secular and common how can we escape its deadly effects? How can we sanctify the ordinary and find true spiritual meaning in the common things of life? The answer has already been suggested. It is to consecrate the whole of life to Christ and begin to do everything in His name and for His sake.” A. W. Tozer, Sanctifying The Ordinary, pt 1

“Jesus Christ has bought us with His blood, but, alas, He has not had His money’s worth! He paid for ALL, and He has had but a fragment of our energy, time and earnings. By an act of consecration, let us ask Him to forgive the robbery of the past, and let us profess our desire to be henceforth utterly and only for Him – His slaves, owning no master other than Himself.” F.B. Meyer

Teach Me, My God And King, George Her­bert/John Wesley (not the hymn mentioned in article)

Teach me, my God and King,
In all things Thee to see,
And what I do in anything
To do it as for Thee.

A man that looks on glass,
On it may stay his eye;
Or if he pleaseth, through it pass,
And then the heaven espy.

To scorn the senses’ sway,
While still to Thee I tend:
In all I do be Thou the Way,
In all be Thou the End.

All may of Thee partake;
Nothing so small can be
But draws, when acted for Thy sake,
Greatness and worth from Thee.

If done to obey Thy laws,
E’en servile labors shine;
Hallowed is toil, if this the cause,
The meanest work divine.

This is the famous stone
That turneth all to gold;
For that which God doth touch and own
Cannot for less be sold.

“It does not take great men to do great things; it only takes consecrated men.” Phillips Brooks

FAITH DARES TO FAIL, Pt 2

Ephesians 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

A. W. Tozer, Faith Dares To Fail, pt 2

“Our Lord died an apparent failure, discredited by the leaders of established religion, rejected by society and forsaken by His friends. The man who ordered Him to the cross was the successful statesman whose hand the ambitious hack politician kissed. It took the resurrection to demonstrate how gloriously Christ had triumphed and how tragically the governor had failed.

Yet today the professed church seems to have learned nothing. We are still seeing as men see and judging after the manner of man’s judgment. How much eager-beaver religions work is done out of a carnal desire to make good. How many hours of prayer are wasted beseeching God to bless projects that are geared to the glorification of little men. How much sacred money is poured out upon men who, in spite of their tear-in-the-voice appeals, nevertheless seek only to make a fair show in the flesh.

The true Christian should turn away from all this. Especially should ministers of the gospel search their own hearts and look deep into their inner motives. No man is worthy to succeed until he is willing to fail. No man is morally worthy of success in religious activities until he is willing that the honor of succeeding should go to another if God so wills.

God may allow His servant to succeed when He has disciplined him to a point where he does not need to succeed to be happy. The man is elated by success and cast down by failure is still a carnal man. At best his fruit will have a worm in it.

God will allow His servant to succeed when he has learned that success does not make him dearer to God nor more valuable in the total scheme of things. We cannot buy God’s favor with crowds or converts or new missionaries sent out or Bibles distributed. All these things can be accomplished without the help of the Holy Spirit. A good personality and a shrewd knowledge of human nature is all that any man needs to be a success in religious circles today.

Our great honor lies in being just what Jesus was and is. To be accepted by those who accept Him, rejected by all who reject Him, loved by those who love Him and hated by everyone that hates Him. What greater glory could come to any man?

We can afford to follow Him to failure. Faith dares to fail. The resurrection and the judgment will demonstrate before all worlds who won and who lost.

We can wait.” A. W. Tozer, Faith Dares To Fail, concluded

“Do you seek any further reward beyond that of having pleased God? In truth, you know not how great a good it is to please Him.” John Chrysostom

We Are God’s People, Bryan Jeffery Leech

We are God’s people, the chosen of the Lord,
Born of His Spirit, established by His Word;
Our cornerstone is Christ alone,
And strong in Him we stand:
O let us live transparently
And walk heart to heart and hand in hand.

We are God’s loved ones, the Bride of Christ our Lord,
For we have known it, the love of God outpoured;
Now let us learn how to return
The gift of love once given:
O let us share each joy and care,
And live with a zeal that pleases Heaven.

We are the Body of which the Lord is Head,
Called to obey Him, now risen from the dead;
He wills us be a family,
Diverse yet truly one:
O let us give our gifts to God,
And so shall his work on earth be done.

We are a temple, the Spirit’s dwelling place,
Formed in great weakness, a cup to hold God’s grace;
We die alone, for on its own
Each ember loses fire:
Yet joined in one the flame burns on
To give warmth and light, and to inspire.

“It is not your business to succeed, but to do right: when you have done so, the rest lies with God.” C.S. Lewis

FAITH DARES TO FAIL

Ephesians 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

A. W. Tozer, Faith Dares To Fail, pt 1

“In this world of men are judged by their ability to do. They are rated according to the distance they have come up the hill of achievement. At the bottom is utter failure; at the top complete success, and between these two extremes the majority of civilized men sweat and struggle from youth to old age.

A few give up, slide to the bottom and become inhabitants of Skid Row. There, with ambition gone and will broken, they subsist on handouts till nature forecloses on them and death takes them away.

At the top are the few who by a combination of talent, hard work and good fortune manage to reach the peak and all the luxury, fame and power that are found there. But in all of this there is no happiness. The effort to succeed puts too much strain on the nerves. Excessive preoccupation with the struggle to win narrows the mind, hardens the heart and shuts out a thousand bright visions which might be enjoyed if there were only leisure to notice them.

The man who reaches the pinnacle is seldom happy for very long. He soon becomes eaten by fears that he may slip back a peg and he forced to surrender his place to another. Examples of this are found in the feverish way the TV star watches his rating and the politician his mail.

Let an elected official learn that a poll shows him to be two per cent less popular in August than he was in March and he begins to sweat like a man on his way to prison. The ball player lives by his averages, the businessman by his rising graph and the concert star by his applause meter. It is not uncommon for a challenger in the ring to weep openly when he fails to knock out the champion. To be second best leaves him completely disconsolate; he must be first to be happy.

This mania to succeed is a good thing perverted. The desire to fulfill the purpose for which we were created is of course a gift from God, but sin has twisted this impulse about and turned it into a selfish lust for first place and top honors. By this lust the whole world of mankind is driven as by a demon, and there is no escape.

When we come to Christ we enter a different world. The New Testament introduces us to a spiritual philosophy infinitely higher than and altogether contrary to that which motivates the world. According to the teaching of Christ the poor in spirit are blessed; the meek inherit the earth; the first are last and the last first; the greatest man is the one that best serves others; the one who loses everything is the only one that will have everything at last; the successful man of the world will see his hoarded treasures swept away by the tempest of judgment; the righteous beggar goes to Abraham’s bosom and the rich man burns in the fires of hell.” A. W. Tozer, Faith Dares To Fail, pt 1

“Success is full of promise till one gets it, and then it seems like a nest from which the bird has flown.” Henry Ward Beecher

Victory in Jesus – Eugene M. Bartlett

I heard an old, old story, how a Savior came from glory,
How He gave His life on Calvary to save a wretch like me;
I heard about His groaning, of His precious blood’s atoning,
then I repented of my sins; and won the victory.

Chorus:
O victory in Jesus, my Savior, forever.
He sought me and bought me with His redeeming blood;
He loved me ere I knew Him, and all my love is due Him,
He plunged me to victory, beneath the cleansing flood

I heard about His healing, of His cleansing power revealing.
How He made the lame to walk again and caused the blind to see;
And then I cried, “Dear Jesus, come and heal my broken spirit,”
And somehow Jesus came and brought to me the victory.

Chorus

I heard about a mansion He has built for me in glory.
And I heard about the streets of gold beyond the crystal sea;
About the angels singing, and the old redemption story,
And some sweet day I’ll sing up there the song of victory.

Chorus

“Worldly pleasures, such as flow from greatness, riches, honors, and sensual gratifications, are infinitely worse than none.” David Brainerd

WHAT TO DO ABOUT THE DEVIL, pt 2

We conclude the article by A. W. Tozer, What To Do About The Devil

“While we must not underestimate the strength of the foe, we must at the same time be careful not to fall under his evil spell and live in constant fear of him. “We are not ignorant of his devices.” If he cannot make skeptics of us he will make us devil conscious and thus throw a permanent shadow across our lives. There is but a hairline between truth and superstition. We should learn the truth about the enemy, but we must stand bravely against every superstitious notion he would introduce about himself.

The truth will set us free… but superstition will enslave us.
I know Christians so engrossed with the fight against evil spirits that they are in a state of constant turmoil. Their touching effort to hold the devil at bay exhausts them nervously and physically, and they manage to stay alive only by frantically calling on God and rebuking the devil in the name of Christ. These are innocent spiritists in reverse and are devil-conscious to a point of being borderline neurotics. They grow sensitive and suspicious and always manage to locate an evil spirit as the cause back of everything that irritates them; then their hackles stand straight up and they begin to order the devil about in a loud voice, but their nervous gestures tell how deeply frightened they are.

The bad thing about all this is that it is contagious and will soon turn a joyous, worshipful congregation into a crowd of seared and jumpy persons, nervous and completely unhappy.

The scriptural way to see things is to set the Lord always before us, put Christ in the center of our vision, and if Satan is lurking around he will appear on the margin only and be seen as but a shadow on the edge of the brightness. It is always wrong to reverse this – to set Satan in the focus of our vision and push God out to the margin. Nothing but tragedy can come of such inversion.

The best way to keep the enemy out is to keep Christ in. The sheep need not be terrified by the wolf; they have but to stay dose to the shepherd. It is not the praying sheep Satan fears but the presence of the shepherd.

The instructed Christian whose faculties have been developed by the Word and the Spirit will not fear the devil. When necessary he will stand against the powers of darkness and overcome them by the blood of the Lamb and the word of his testimony. He will recognize the peril in which he lives and will know what to do about it, but he will practice the presence of God and never allow himself to become devil-Conscious.” A. W. Tozer, What To Do About The Devil, concluded

“Satan rules all men that are in his kingdom. Some he rules through lust. Some he rules through covetousness. Some he rules through appetite. Some he rules by their temper, but he rules them. And none will ever seek to be delivered until they get their eyes open and see that they have been taken captive.” D.L. Moody

Onward, Christian Soldiers, (stanzas 2,4,5) Sabine Baring-Gould, 1834-1924

At the sign of triumph Satan’s host doth flee;
Hell’s foundations quiver at the shout of praise;
on then, Christian soldiers, on to victory!
brothers, lift your voices, loud your anthems raise.

Crowns and thrones may perish, kingdoms rise and wane,
But the church of Jesus constant will remain.
Gates of hell can never gainst that church prevail;
We have Christ’s own promise, and that cannot fail.

Onward then, ye people, join our happy throng,
Blend with ours your voices in the triumph song.
Glory, laud and honor unto Christ the King,
This through countless ages men and angels sing.

John 10:10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

WHAT TO DO ABOUT THE DEVIL, pt 1

Today and tomorrow we look at another article by A. W. Tozer, “What To Do About the Devil”

WHAT TO DO ABOUT THE DEVIL, A. W. Tozer – 1959

“Human nature tends to excesses by a kind of evil magnetic attraction. We instinctively run to one of two extremes, and that is why we are so often in error. A proof of this propensity to extremes is seen in the attitude of the average Christian toward the devil. I have observed among spiritual persons a tendency either to ignore him altogether or to make too much of him. Both are wrong.

There is in the world an enemy whom we dare not ignore. We see him first in the third chapter of Genesis and last in the twentieth of Revelation; which is to say that he was present at the beginning of human history and will be there at its earthly close. This enemy is not a creation of religious fancy, not a mere personification of evil for convenience, but a being as real as man himself. The Bible attributes to him qualities of personality too detailed to be figurative, and reveals him speaking and acting in situations hard and practical and far removed from the poetic imagination.

The devil is declared in the Scriptures to be an enemy of God and of all good men. He is said to be a liar, a deceiver and a murderer who achieves his ends by guile and trickery. Because he is a spirit he is able to “walk up and down in the earth” at his pleasure. While he is not omnipresent (omnipresence being an attribute of God alone) he is ubiquitous, which for his purpose amounts to the same thing.

The enemy bears many names, among them being the dragon, the serpent, the devil and Satan. In addition to this one supreme evil being there are demons, “principalities,” “powers,” “rulers of the darkness of this world” and “wicked spirits in high places” which operate under his direction. How successful this band of cosmic outlaws has been is written into human history with a pen dipped in blood. The havoc they have wrought in the earth is so frightful as to exceed all power of description. Every newspaper, every news broadcast is a proof of the existence of that evil genius called the devil and his band of vicious spirits dedicated to destruction.

Satan hates God for His own sake, and everything that is dear to God he hates for the very reason that God loves it. Because man was made in God’s image the hatred with which Satan regards him is particularly malevolent, and since the Christian is doubly dear to God he is hated by the powers of darkness with an aggravated fury probably not equaled anywhere else in the moral universe.

In view of this it cannot be less than folly for us Christians to disregard the reality and presence of the enemy. To live in a world under siege is to live in constant peril; to live there and be wholly unaware of the peril is to increase it a hundredfold and to turn the world into a paradise for fools.” A. W. Tozer, What To Do About The Devil, continued…

“In the midst of a world of light and love, of song and feast and dance, Lucifer could find nothing to think of more interesting than his own prestige.” C.S. Lewis

THE SON HATH MADE ME FREE, Miriam E. Oatman 1887-1962

I was once in Egypt’s bondage,
But deliverance came to me,
And I’m living now in Canaan,
For the Son hath made me free.

Refrain

I am dwelling now in Canaan,
Jesus’ blood avails for me;
I am free from condemnation,
For the Son hath made me free.

I was once a slave to Satan,
And he worked his will in me,
But I’m bound by sin no longer,
For the Son hath made me free.

Refrain

Ere I entered into Canaan,
Inbred sin remained in me;
But from it I’ve found a cleansing,
For the Son hath made me free.

Refrain

All my fear, all condemnation,
All that stood ’twixt God and me,
Praise His name! are left behind me
For the Son hath made me free.

Refrain

James 4:7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

FAITH IS A JOURNEY, NOT A DESTINATION, 3

Today we conclude the article by A. W. Tozer, “Faith Is A Journey, Not A Destination.

Faith Is a Journey, Not a Destination , A.W. Tozer

ACTS 2:42 They continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

“We will never be completely honest with our hearers until we tell them the blunt truth that as members of a race of moral rebels they are in a serious jam, and one they will not get out of easily. If they refuse to repent and believe on Christ they will most surely perish; if they do turn to Him, the same enemies that crucified Him will try to crucify them. One way they suffer alone without hope; the other way they suffer with Christ for a while, but in the midst of their suffering they enjoy His loving consolation and inward support and are able to rejoice even in tribulation.

Those first believers turned to Christ with the full understanding that they were espousing an unpopular cause that could cost them everything. They knew they would henceforth be members of a hated minority group with life and liberty always in jeopardy.

This is no idle flourish. Shortly after Pentecost some were jailed, many lost all their earthly goods, a few were slain outright and hundreds “scattered abroad.”
They could have escaped all this by the simple expedient of denying their faith and turning back to the world; but this they steadfastly refused to do.

Seen thus in comparison with each other, is the Christianity of American evangelicalism today the same as that of the first century? I wonder. But again, I think I know.” Faith Is A Journey, Not A Destination A. W. Tozer

“Popularity has slain more prophets of God than persecution ever did.” Vance Havner

A Mighty Fortress Is Our God, Mar­tin Lut­her 1483-1546

A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing;
Our helper He, amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing:
For still our ancient foe doth seek to work us woe;
His craft and power are great, and, armed with cruel hate,
On earth is not his equal.

Did we in our own strength confide, our striving would be losing;
Were not the right Man on our side, the Man of God’s own choosing:
Dost ask who that may be? Christ Jesus, it is He;
Lord Sabaoth, His Name, from age to age the same,
And He must win the battle.

And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us,
We will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph through us:
The Prince of Darkness grim, we tremble not for him;
His rage we can endure, for lo, his doom is sure,
One little word shall fell him.

That word above all earthly powers, no thanks to them, abideth;
The Spirit and the gifts are ours through Him Who with us sideth:
Let goods and kindred go, this mortal life also;
The body they may kill: God’s truth abideth still,
His kingdom is forever.

John 17:14-18 I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.

FAITH IS A JOURNEY, NOT A DESTINATION, 2

Faith Is a Journey, Not a Destination , A.W. Tozer

ACTS 2:42 They continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

“They continued,” says Luke, and is it not plain that it was only by continuing that they could confirm their faith? On a given day they believed, were baptized and joined themselves to the believing company. Very good, but tomorrow what? and the next day? and the next week? How could anyone know that their conversion had been genuine? How could they live down the critic’s charge that they had been pressured into a decision? that they had cracked under the psychological squeeze set up by crowds and religious excitement? Obviously there was only one way: They continued.

Not only did they continue, they continued steadfastly. So wrote Luke, and the word “steadfastly” is there to tell us that they continued against serious opposition.

Steadfastness is required only when we are under attack, mental or physical, and the story of those early Christians is a story of faith under fire. The opposition was real.

Here again is seen the glaring discrepancy between Biblical Christianity and that of present-day evangelicals, particularly in the United States. In certain countries, I am told, some of our brethren are suffering painful persecution and counting not their lives dear unto themselves that they might win Christ. For these I have only utmost admiration. I speak not of such as they, but of the multitudes of religious weaklings within our evangelical fold here in America.

To make converts here we are forced to play down the difficulties and play up the peace of mind and worldly success enjoyed by those who accept Christ. We must assure our hearers that Christianity is now a proper and respectable thing and that Christ has become quite popular with political bigwigs, well-to-do business tycoons and the Hollywood swimming pool set. Thus assured, hell-deserving sinners are coming in droves to “accept” Christ for what they can get out of Him; and though one now and again may drop a tear as proof of his sincerity, it is hard to escape the conclusion that most of them are stooping to patronize the Lord of glory much as a young couple might fawn on a boresome but rich old uncle in order to be mentioned in his will later on.” Faith Is A Journey, Not A Destination A. W. Tozer

“God asks no man whether he will accept life. That is not the choice. You must take it. The only choice is how.” Henry Ward Beecher

O come and dwell in me, Charles Wesley 1707-1788

O come and dwell in me,
Spirit of power within,
And bring the glorious liberty
From sorrow, fear, and sin.

Hasten the joyful day
Which shall my sins consume,
When old things shall be done away,
And all things new become.

I want the witness, Lord,
That all I do is right,
According to Thy mind and Word,
Well pleasing in Thy sight.

I ask no higher state;
Indulge me but in this,
And soon or later then translate
To my eternal bliss.

Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

FAITH IS A JOURNEY, NOT A DESTINATION, 1

Today we start a three day look at the article “Faith Is A Journey, Not A Destination” by A. W. Tozer

Faith Is a Journey, Not a Destination , A.W. Tozer

ACTS 2:42 They continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

“So says Luke of the thousands who received the Word and were baptized following the preaching of Peter on the day of Pentecost.

Conversion for those first Christians was not a destination; it was the beginning of a journey. And right there is where the Biblical emphasis differs from ours.

Today all is made to depend upon the initial act of believing. At a given moment a “decision” is made for Christ, and after that everything is automatic. This is not taught in so many words, but such is impression inadvertently created by our failure to lay a scriptural emphasis in our evangelistic preaching. We of the evangelical churches are almost all guilty of this lopsided view of the Christian life, and because the foundations are out of plumb the temple of God leans dangerously and threatens to topple unless some immediate corrections are made.

In our eagerness to make converts we allow our hearers to absorb the idea that they can deal with their entire responsibility once and for all by an act of believing. This is in some vague way supposed to honor grace and glorify God, whereas actually it is to make Christ the author of a grotesque, unworkable system that has no counterpart in the Scriptures of truth.

In the Book of Acts faith was for each believer a beginning, not an end; it was a journey, not a bed in which to lie while waiting for the day of our Lord’s triumph. Believing was not a once-done act; it was more than an act, it was an attitude of heart and mind which inspired and enabled the believer to take up his cross and follow the Lamb whithersoever He went.” Faith Is A Journey, Not A Destination A. W. Tozer

“People should think less about what they ought to do and more about what they ought to be. If only their being were good, their works would shine forth brightly. Do not imagine that you can ground your salvation upon actions; it must rest on what you are.” Meister Eckhart

O Young and Fearless Prophet, S. Ralph Harlow, 1885-1972

1. O young and fearless Prophet of ancient Galilee,
thy life is still a summons to serve humanity;
to make our thoughts and actions less prone to please the crowd,
to stand with humble courage for truth with hearts uncowed.

2. We marvel at the purpose that held thee to thy course
while ever on the hilltop before thee loomed the cross;
thy steadfast face set forward where love and duty shone,
while we betray so quickly and leave thee there alone.

3. O help us stand unswerving against war’s bloody way,
where hate and lust and falsehood hold back Christ’s holy sway;
forbid false love of country that blinds us to his call,
who lifts above the nations the unity of all.

4. Stir up in us a protest against our greed for wealth,
while others starve and hunger and plead for work and health;
where homes with little children cry out for lack of bread,
who live their years sore burdened beneath a gloomy dread.

5. O young and fearless Prophet, we need thy presence here,
amid our pride and glory to see thy face appear;
once more to hear thy challenge above our noisy day,
again to lead us forward along God’s holy way.

Colossians 3:5-10 Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming. In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices

CHRIST’S DEATH

Ephesians 1:7–8 In him (Jesus) we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight

Christ’s Death Efficacious and Vicarious, A. W. Tozer
“In the Old Testament, the sacrifices and offerings and the poured-out blood of animals were efficacious in ceremonial symbolism. But the death of Jesus Christ was efficacious actually and eternally. (Efficacious is a word theologians like to use; it simply means that it works. It is effective. You can count on it.) When Jesus poured out His blood on Calvary, He guaranteed eternal redemption to all who would put their trust in Him.

The blood and the life are one. When the blood was poured out, when Jesus Christ the eternal Son died, His death became vicarious. (Vicarious is another word that needs a brief explanation. A vicarious act is one performed on behalf of someone else. When Jesus died at Calvary, it was a vicarious death. Jesus died on behalf of us all, the innocent One for the guilty many.)

The atoning, vicarious death of Jesus Christ for sinful humanity is at the very foundation of the Christian faith. For those who think they can find a better way than God’s way, it is not a popular teaching. But there is no other way. Jesus is the only way.” A. W. Tozer

“When God accepts a sinner, He is, in fact, only accepting Christ. He looks into the sinner’s eyes, and He sees His own dear Son’s image there, and He takes him in.” Charles Spurgeon

And Can It Be That I Should Gain, Charles Wesley

And can it be that I should gain
An interest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain—
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

’Tis mystery all: th’Immortal dies:
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine.
’Tis mercy all! Let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.
’Tis mercy all! Let earth adore;
Let angel minds inquire no more.

He left His Father’s throne above
So free, so infinite His grace—
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race:
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!

Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quickening ray—
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.

Still the small inward voice I hear,
That whispers all my sins forgiven;
Still the atoning blood is near,
That quenched the wrath of hostile Heaven.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.

No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him, is mine;
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach th’eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.
Bold I approach th’eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

“Before we can begin to see the cross as something done for us, we have to see it as something done by us.” John Stott

GETHSEMANE, Alan Redpath

Luke 22:41-44 “He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.”

GETHSEMANE, Alan Redpath

“The thing I find myself amazed is the horror of sin. Sin must be a dreadful thing if it crucified Jesus like this.

O that men would know what sin is and what the wrath of god against sin involves. O for a Holy Spirit conviction against sin. O that your heart and mine today may see the horror of it, the loathsome of it. I don’t believe that anybody ever comes to Jesus for salvation who hasn’t stood before the Lamb of God and seen himself a rebel, an enemy, lost, undone, doomed, condemned and his only hope to fly quickly for refuge to the bleeding side of the Lamb of God.

I’m not sure that’s in our preaching these days very much. It’s snap decisions we want in order to be successful. God save us, God save us.

O, that I might have, that you might have my dear listener such a conviction of sin that you see yourself, if your not in Christ so hopelessly lost that you dare not leave this meeting this building or finish this service without running to the fountain yet open for sin and uncleanness.

But then I think too my heart is gripped with a completeness of His cross, His atonement, how black and sinful I am, we all are. God knows we’re unfit for the lowest hell and I marvel that God hasn’t sent me to it long ago. I’d got what I deserved if He did.

But then to go to gethsemane and I see Jesus wallowing on the ground in blood and anguish. I hear His groans and cries and I see His sweat, His bloody sweat and I hear Him say. “Father, not my will but thine be done” and then I understand, bless His name how God in heaven can spare me. He has smitten His son in my stead. Can He demand payment twice? Can He scorch and consume me? For our God is consuming fire. Can He do that when He’s already consumed the burnt offering in Jesus? Oh no, I see justice satisfied. I see the law of God honored. I see my guilty soul set free. I see the fire of justice of heaven has burnt itself out into ashes upon Jesus my substitute and I see the law the holy law of God has exhausted every demand upon the person of the one who was made a curse for me that I might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” Gethsemane, Alan Redpath, sermon

“Paul drank deeply of the Master’s cup. It seemed as if Jesus had trusted him with participation in the sorrows of Gethsemane and Calvary.” F.B. Meyer

Man of Sorrows! what a name, Philip P. Bliss
Man of Sorrows! what a name
for the Son of God, who came
ruined sinners to reclaim.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!

Bearing shame and scoffing rude,
in my place condemned he stood;
sealed my pardon with his blood.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!

Guilty, vile, and helpless we;
spotless Lamb of God was he;
full atonement can it be?
Hallelujah! What a Savior!

Lifted up was he to die;
“It is finished!” was his cry;
now in heaven exalted high.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!

When he comes, our glorious King,
all his ransomed home to bring,
then anew this song we’ll sing:
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Philip P. Bliss

Hebrews 12:3-4 :For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.”