The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"The Holy Sequence"
Our memory verse this week speaks to the truth we have considered in several recent messages.
"Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering, for He is faithful that promised" (Hebrews 10:23).
How do we unwaveringly "hold fast the profession of our faith?" The growing realization of God's faithfulness in holding on to us provides a primary answer to this vital question.
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time" (I Peter 1:3-5).
Certainly, we play a vital role in our fellowship and walk with the Lord. Faithfulness to God does not involve a programmed reaction of machines, but rather a personal response of hearts and minds. However, we seek always to remember the order and sequence of the relationship. God motivates, guides, and empowers. We trust, submit, and take the steps He lays before us to walk in faith and faithfulness, ever mindful of His promised leading and enabling by the Holy Spirit. "And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work" (II Corinthians 9:8).
The Psalmist succinctly addressed the issue: "I will love Thee, o Lord my strength" (Psalm 18:1). As an Old Testament saint, David did not possess the permanently indwelling Holy Spirit, as do born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ (John 14:17). However, he understood that the capacity to love God involved his free response, while also requiring God's enabling. This truth must be greatly amplified in the hearts and minds of New Testament saints through the marvelous gift we received when we believed:
"The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us" (Romans 5:5).
The Lord Jesus prayed that such a gift would be given: "I have declared unto them Thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them" (John 17:26). He then died, rose again, and ascended to Heaven to make possible God's bestowal of His indwelling love. Through the Spirit of Christ, we can faithfully love our Heavenly Father in a response that is free and real on our part - "I will love Thee" - while nevertheless motivated and empowered by God - "o Lord my strength." "God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying Abba Father" (Galatians 4:6).
The spiritual synthesis of our Lord's faithful working and our trusting response provides a powerful basis for the life He calls us to live. Through Christ, God and believers unite in a relationship wherein both parties have a real and vital role. His promised presence, power, and active working in us makes possible our capacity to genuinely love our Lord in heart, attitude, word, deed, and self-sacrificial devotion. Remembering the holy sequence of His faithfulness leading to our faithfulness establishes the basis of grace and truth whereby we echo the Psalmist's ancient pledge, based on God's empowering promise: "I will love Thee, o Lord my strength!"
"Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure."
"But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord."
(II Corinthians 3:18)
Weekly Memory Verse
"Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering, for He is faithful that promised."