The Lord willing, I will be preaching this Wednesday and next Sunday at 13th Street Baptist Church in Ashland, KY. Please pray for us as we travel and as I preach God’s Word to our brethren in Ashland. Be sure to pray for the men who preach here next Sunday in my absence.
A WEDDING GARMENT
"Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless" (Matthew 22:12). He had a garment, but not a wedding garment. It was one of his own providing, like those who have a righteousness of their own, of whom the Lord elsewhere speaks, "Woe to the rebellious children, saith the Lord, that take counsel, but not of Me; and that cover with a covering, but not of My Spirit, that they may add sin to sin" (Isa. 30:1). Precious Lord Jesus, clothe me with the wedding garment of Thy righteousness; and feed me with the rich food of Thy body and blood; yea, Lord, be Thou my covering, my joy, my all; that when at Thy church, at Thy table, at Thine house of prayer below and at Thy kingdom of glory above, the King cometh in to see His guests, my soul may cry out, in Thine own blessed words and with a joy unspeakable and full of glory, "I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, He hath covered me with a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels" (Isa. 61:10). —Robert Hawker
For a true believer, a genuine object of God’s mercy and grace in Christ, life ought not merely to contain acts of worship and service to his Lord and Savior; it should be an act of worship and service to his Lord and Savior. – Anonymous
Christ's sheep do not contribute any part of their own wool to their own clothing. They wear, and are justified by, the fine linen of Christ's obedience only. —Augustus Toplady
There was not a speck of sin on the conscience, nor a principle of sin in the nature of His people for which Christ was not judged on the cross. They are now looked upon as having died with Christ, lain in the grave with Christ, raised with Christ, perfectly accepted in Him. Their sins, their iniquities, their transgressions, their enmity, their uncircumcision, has been entirely put away by the cross. The sentence of death has been written on the flesh; but the believer is in possession of a new life, in union with his risen Head in glory. What rest – perfect rest – for the heart and conscience is here! What full relief for the burdened spirit! All our sins buried in the grace of Christ, not one – even the smallest – left out! God did this for us! All that His searching eye could detect in us, He laid on the head of Christ when He hung upon the cross! —C. H. Mackintosh
A PEOPLE ZEALOUS OF GOOD WORKS
God’s Word tells all of us who believe and rest in Christ for all salvation that He “gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (Titus 2:14). To be “zealous of good works” means to be ready, eager, and willing as recipients and instruments of God’s power and grace in Christ through and by Whom He works in us to bring forth works of grace, love, and gratitude in obedience to Him to the praise of the glory of His grace. One version translates it as being “on fire with good works.” How can we be “zealous,” even on fire, for “good works” for the glory of God when there is still so much of sin and self within us to draw us away by the lusts of the flesh? This zeal of good works is a passion imparted to us by the Holy Spirit as He gives us a new heart and inspires us with a saving view of God’s grace towards us in that Christ “gave Himself for us” to “redeem us from all iniquity.” This is salvation unto glory accomplished, NOT by our works, but by Christ in HIS work of obedience unto death to put away our sins by His blood and give us righteousness that is imputed or charged to us. All “good works” and zeal for “good works” are the product and fruit of God’s grace in Christ. As believers struggle in the warfare of the flesh and the Spirit, how is this zeal maintained? It is maintained by God’s grace in keeping our eyes upon Christ and what He has accomplished and secured for us. This zeal grows as we see more of the glory of Christ and God’s mercy and grace towards us in and by Him. – Pastor Bill Parker