Hymns for service: “My Faith Has Found a Resting Place” – p. 228 “This Is My Father’s World” – p. 39
“O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of the LORD.” (Isaiah 2:5)
WORSHIP IS A NECESSITY BORN OF DESIRE
For a true believer worship is not an option but a necessity. It is a necessity born of desire as it is the sincere and heart-felt longing of a sinner saved by grace. This desire manifests itself as he acts out of spirit and in truth to honor and give thanks to his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is a necessity, not out of legal obligation, but out of love and gratitude which the Holy Spirit has shed abroad within his heart by revealing the exceeding sinfulness of his sin and the exceeding riches of God’s grace in Christ. It is a necessity not out of mercenary promise of earned reward but of a spiritual hunger and thirst to be fed by God’s Word. – Copied
“I have preached righteousness in the great congregation: lo, I have not refrained my lips, O LORD, Thou knowest” (Psalm 40:9). The Speaker in this passage is Christ as is evident by comparing verses 6-8 with Hebrews 10:5-7. The righteousness which He proclaimed is that which He Himself brought in (Daniel 9:24) and established by His “obedience unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:8). It is this righteousness which enables a holy God to justify the ungodly. The Father approved of and accepted the wrought-out righteousness of the Savior and freely imputed it to those in whose stead He lived, died and arose. “Therefore by the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of One the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of One shall many be made righteous” (Romans 5:18-19). The disobedience of the first Adam was imputed (charged to, reckoned) to everyone he represented (mankind) and, consequently, his seed was legally constituted to be sinners (Romans 5:12). In the same way, the righteousness established by the last Adam’s cross-death was imputed to all His seed (those chosen in the election of grace). His people are, therefore, declared to be righteous. “For He hath made Him to be sin for us, Who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21). —Pastor Jim Byrd
BOLDNESS BEFORE GOD
“Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,” (Heb. 10:19).
As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ we realize that our best efforts to obey God cannot qualify us for or earn for us a place of acceptance before God; for we are all as an "unclean thing and even our righteousnesses are filthy rags” (Isa. 64:6). On the other hand, we are assured that our sins and short-comings cannot HINDER us from being accepted with God. Why is this so? It is because we who are saved by God’s grace are "ACCEPTED IN THE BELOVED." Christ is our only hope, our only plea, our only qualification for entering into the holy presence of God. We who are imperfect in ourselves are perfect in the Lord Jesus Christ! How is this so? It is so because of Christ’s righteousness imputed to us. How perfect is this? It qualifies and gives us “BOLDNESS” (liberty and confidence) to enter the holy presence of God.
What about the work of the Holy Spirit within us? It is the work of the Holy Spirit within us to give us spiritual life so that we can see, believe, and have this boldness because of our standing in the Lord Jesus Christ. God the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin and continually drives us to look “unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith” (Heb. 12:2). The Holy Spirit brings us to mourn in godly sorrow over our sins, but our tears of sorrow and acts of repentance do not make us righteous before God. The Holy Spirit sheds God’s love abroad within our hearts to motivate and inspire is in the obedience of faith, love, grace, and gratitude, but our obedience does not make us righteous and give us boldness to enter into the holiest. It is “THE BLOOD OF JESUS” alone that gives us the liberty and confidence we need to enter the holy presence of God. Any sinner who is truly convinced of sin and who truly desires to live a godly life would have it no other way. He rejoices in Christ Jesus and has no confidence in the flesh. – Pastor Bill Parker