The gospel is…the word about Jesus Christ and what he did for us in order to restore us to a right relationship with God. – Graeme Goldsworthy

Friday, October 2, 2015

The River (by Jordan Feliz)

Some songs just grab my heart and won’t let go. The ones that do often have a blend of truth, melody, and soul-stirring rhythm -- forging into an auditory powerhouse that captivates the soul for Christ. The River by Jordan Feliz is just such a song! I providentially stumbled upon this song today. I couldn’t help but play it over and over again. The same thing occurred at home when I introduced it to my small tribe after dinner. The repeat button was continually pressed as dancing and air-band imitations ensued for the better part of an hour in our kitchen.

Your spiritual -- and physical pulse -- will be quickened for our precious Savior whose work of salvation at Calvary offers to cleanse from the deepest sin, the greatest rebellion, and the deepest bondage. As Jordan says about The River:

“The song itself is an invitation to anyone who hears it—whether they’re stuck in pride and legalism or wallowing down in the mess they’ve made of their lives—it’s an invitation to take whatever we have and to run to Jesus. It’s an invitation to go down in amazing grace and to rise up being made new.”

The simplicity and profundity of this song -- both musically and lyrically -- remind me of precious Scripture passages that reflect the same combination. Read them as you listen to this heart-pounding song, and may its invitation drive you to the river of God’s eternally refreshing and forgiving gospel this weekend!

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High. Psalm 46.4

Then he brought me back to the door of the temple, and behold, water was issuing from below the threshold of the temple…Then he led me back to the bank of the river. As I went back, I saw on the bank of the river very many trees on the one side and on the other. And on the banks, on both sides of the river, there will grow all kinds of trees for food. Their leaves will not wither, nor their fruit fail, but they will bear fresh fruit every month, because the water for them flows from the sanctuary. Their fruit will be for food, and their leaves for healing. Ezekiel 47.1, 6, 12
And in that day
       the mountains shall drip sweet wine,
and the hills shall flow with milk,
       and all the streambeds of Judah
shall flow with water;
       and a fountain shall come forth from the house of the Lord. Joel 3.18

Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.” John 4.10

Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4.13-14

Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb. Revelation 22.1

And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. Revelation 21.6

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Cross Must Calm Our Guilty Fears of Judgment

“This is our acquittal: the guilt that held us liable for punishment has been transferred to the head of the Son of God [Isa. 53:12]. We must, above all, remember this substitution, lest we tremble and remain anxious throughout life – as if God’s righteous vengeance, which the Son of God has taken upon himself, still hung over us.” John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Satan's lie: "God's mercy is a reason to sin."

“When Satan attempts to draw you to sin by presenting God as a God all made up of mercy, then reply that though God’s general mercy extend[s] to all the works of His hand, yet His special mercy is conformed to the ones who are divinely qualified, to the ones who love Him and keep His commandments, to the ones who trust in Him, whose hope hang upon Him and fear Him.” Thomas Brooks, Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

What Should I Do If I Don't Feel Like Praying?

“If you go to pray and your heart is cold as ice spiritually, you can take the fire of God’s Word and plunge it into your frosty heart by praying through a passage of Scripture.” Don Whitney, Praying the Bible (85)

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

The Bittersweetness of Sin

Consider sin to be but a bitter sweet. That seeming sweet that is in sin will quickly vanish, and lasting shame, sorrow, horror, and terror will come in the room of it: Though wickedness be sweet in his mouth, though he hide it under his tongue, though he spare it, and forsake it not, but keep it still within his mouth, yet his meat in his bowels is turned, it is the gall of asps within him (Job 20.12-14). Forbidden profits and pleasures are most pleasing to vain men, who count madness mirth. Many long to be meddling with the murdering morsels of sin, which nourish not, but tear and consume the belly, and the soul that receives them. Many eat that on earth which they will digest in hell. Sin’s murdering morsels will deceive those that devour them. Adam’s apple as a bitter sweet; Esau’s mess was a bitter sweet; the Israelites’ quails a bitter sweet; Jonathan’s honey a bitter sweet; and Adonijah’s dainties a bitter sweet. After the meal is ended, then comes the reckoning. Men must not think to dance and dine with the devil, and then to sup with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. They cannot feed on the poison of asps, and yet avoid having the viper’s tongue not slay them.

When the asp stings a man, it first tickles him so as it makes him laugh, till the poison, by little and little, gets to the heart, and then it pains him more than ever it delighted him. So does sin; it may please a little at first, but will pain the soul with a witness at last. Yea, if there were the least real delight in sin, there could be no perfect hell, where men shall most perfectly be tormented with their sin. Thomas Brooks, Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices