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SABBATH BIBLE STUDY
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Compiled by JS LOWTHER
The Doctrine of Good Works
The Fruits of the Spirit
Joy fulfilled In the Knowledge of His Will
Prayer in the words of Isaiah the prophet
Lord let the eyes of them that see not be dim,
and let the ears of them that hear hearken.
Let the heart also of the rash understand knowledge,
and let the tongue of the stammerer be ready to speak plainly.
2Co_5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
2Co 5:9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him.
2Co 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.
2Co 5:11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.
2Co 5:12 For we commend not ourselves again unto you, but give you occasion to glory on our behalf, that ye may have somewhat to answer them which glory in appearance, and not in heart.
2Co 5:13 For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause.
2Co 5:14 For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:
2Co 5:15 And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.
2Co 5:16 Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.
2Co 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
2Co 5:18 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
2Co 5:19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.
2Co 5:20 Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.
2Co 5:21 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.
Last week I had concluded the absolute establishment of a foundation build upon Jesus Christ in whom is hid all wisdom and knowledge. from Colosians 1&2
I had brought forth to you the fact that Jesus Christ is the Logos, or the Word of God, and therefore He is the very Logic and force of creation as Joh_1:1, Eph_3:9; Col_1:17; Heb_1:10 and 1Jn_1:1 Tell us plainly. We can link this directly to Gen_1:3 where the Eternal God Speaks by his spirit and brings forth all things.
In this absolute foundation there should be no doubt about the Word Jesus being the force that speaks the name of YHWH the Eternal God to our heart by Faith, to will and do of his good pleasure.
In this text of 2 Corinthians we are again hearing about the reality of a tri-une God of Scripture: the Father, the Word, and the Spirit all working upon the chaotic heart, mind and soul of man.
Insomuch as in 2Co_5:17-18, because we were also dead, dark, empty and void
” if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
We have good reason to consider the ultimate proto-type of life and new creation, Gen_1:1-3, and that in context to last Sabbaths message on the Christ the Word and his role in creation on both regards:
Gen_1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
Gen 1:2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
Gen 1:3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
Gen 1:4 And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
If we were to skip through the well known creation story to the 3rd day after the division of the firmament of heaven, we read:
Gen_1:11 And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.
Gen 1:12 And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
This is the verse I brought to your attention many weeks ago, now in considering the creation maxim a principle that says “the tree yields fruit, which has a seed in itself, after its own kind…”.
So in the very first, most primary understanding of new creation, we see the Father, the Spirit and the Word making order our of darkness and void, we can see the function of these persons of God with one essence bringing forth fruit with seed to propagate and as we all know those plants grow from light, and this is the light of God’s Word, this is in fact the light of Jesus Christ the very force of creation by his expressed person.
So let me make this point before getting back to our introductory text:
Simply giving lip serves to the concept of the Trinity, speaking of Father, Son and Spirit, Father, Word and Spirit. Will do nothing more than confuse and bewilder you if you do not understand the interaction between the persons of the divine essence in bringing forth creation and life from death, and causing growth that brings forth fruit with the seed of it’s calling in its own creation.
And so Like in Creation, where God takes darkness and emptiness, the dead state of the world and he raises it up by the Spirit and the Word to make light and fullness so we recognize that this same creation force does this to our heart mind and soul to empower our strength by teaching us his name YHWH Alone the lone God, the Eternal One, the one God… this is the name we need to have transferred to us that changes our standing by the power of God.
The Eternal nature of God and the Name YHWH or Jehovah meaning the He That Is, the Eternal LORD God of all things from creation to our own translation from light to darkness as our first day, our heavenly calling we see in heaven as the expanse of our heavens made clear as our second day, and the fullness we are given in growth from prior emptiness from darkness as our 3rd day to bring forth fruit after the kind he has made us to be by his word.
The lesson of God’s name as the LORD of all things is more important than it’s pronunciation in Hebrew, the knowledge, wisdom and understanding of the creation power of the triune God is more important than saying ‘I believe in the trinity’. Because if the work of the trinity is not working you over in the creation week of your life as a new creation you can recite the Athanasian creed all you want, it is not your creed it is lip serves unacceptable to God.
So what is acceptable to God?
The apostle Paul says this is:
Rom_12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable (λογικηνG3050 or logical) service.
And this is your Logical service, this is what your will and the joy of you will, the Joy of Christ lived out in you should be, to…
Rom 12:2 …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.
God’s Mercy, compels you, constrains you to sacrifice your body in this life you live in the flesh, to holiness that is acceptable unto God, and your change to not be of the world but to be transformed from the world and renewed in the newness of your mind, to judge it logical, reasonable, rational to prove or test or try what is to God, not to you, to prove to God not to your acquaintance, to prove to God not to your family, to prove to God not to your friends in this world was is good, acceptable and pleasing because that is simply how your mind works. You will and must sacrifice all t the glory of God to be rational before God who makes alive the dead, and called those things which be not as though they were.
And so in concluding on this point of being a new creation, let me finish as Paul does:
Rom_12:3 …do not be high-minded about your proving and bodily sacrifice you are called to in the newness of life, but ” think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.”
While all true Christians with true Grace given them by God through Faith in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sin have a repentant change of mind, and must have a measure of the fruit of the spirit poured into them, and therefore will have love and joy and other fruits on their vine the measure of Faith given to them by the gift of God is more for some and less for others this is why Paul says “think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.” … do not be high-minded but have patience with those who have less a measure to sacrifice their bodies in this life in the transformed renewing of the mind in the proving of the ways of God and his service. not all men have the measure of Faith and therefore the measure of spiritual gifts and fruit others have, even in the manifestation of faith, but all truly elect will have Faith in the free grace of God through the knowledge of Jesus Christ and his sacrifice for their transgressions against God’s Law and sin, they will be humbled hear and given more grace here of all places most important, for with out Faith in this act of Grace has not been poured our upon them to bring forth any worthy fruits of repentance to continue in bringing forth more fruit abundantly.
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
Like creation we are brought to life by the Spirit of God hovering over up, being poured like water into us, like roots nourished by the Father, as the Word of Christ is sent into our heart to Renew us as New creature, a new creation of God.
And so let me remind you of the words of Jesus, before moving on:
Joh_14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
Joh 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
Joh 14:17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
Joh 14:18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.
Joh 14:19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
Joh 14:20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
Joh 14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.
Here is the gist of it:
“If ye love me, keep my commandments…
He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.”
Is this your reasonable survive?
Are you exercising your measure of faith to prove the goodness, acceptability and perfection of the will of God in keeping his commandments in your life?
We affirm truly, that the fruit of the spirit of Love and joy and Faith and all else precede commandment keeping by the Grace of God, and yet they bring forth the fruit of commandment keeping and show the love of God in you : that Christ is in the Father, and you are in Christ, and Christ in you. And as Paul said in Colossians, this is the hope of glory in heaven.
This why proposing works before Grace is preposterous, because as Christ says, you are in him before he is in you.
Us, being in the vine first definitely gives us the ability to bring for the first fruits that Gal_5:23 against such there is no law of which Jesus gives us of the treasure of his own grace by the fathers efforts and not our own.
Yet it is after this definitive point where we are in the vine, made clean by the spirit word of Christ that is sanctification, our mental stated that is constrained that without him we can do nothing Joh_15:5, this is definitive sanctification that makes us holy enough to enter into his light, and that entrance is justification by his spirit poured into our heart.
And so in God Grace and our understanding of the grace through Faith in Jesus the question of salvation and justification is settled before any act of obedience we can do, in our will or our mind or our body. Primary, initial or definitive holiness, that is to be holy enough to enter in to the light of God’s presence is settled by Jesus Choice, and you know about that choice that He made to call you holy and without blame and to walk before him in LOVE (Eph_1:4 ) because of the newness of you mind to prove his will and sacrifice yourself to his service, to know his definition of Good, to know that he says is acceptable, and to ask what He says is perfect.
And all this is because you are his workmanship.
Remember what Paul taught us ?
.He shows his elect
… the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
Eph_2:8 by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Eph 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.
Take not Paul uses here the analogy and reality of Walking God and therefore walking in good works.
The Very Law of God uses the very words Paul uses in all these books concerning ‘walking’.
Paul is contrasting what he said in:
Eph 2:1-3 you were dead…wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:
Eph 2:3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
When God speaks of his Law he gave to Moses he says :
Deu_10:12 And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul,
Deu 10:13 To keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good?
This is a New creation fed by the True vine that is willing joyfully to love and suffer for that love and joy in the heart, no matter what time in history we live in to walk in the LORD’s Law will be a sacrifice of darkness for light, this is the Workmanship ye are if you are Jesus’ disciple, Bound up with the law and the testimony as Isaiah ch.8 said knowing the face of the Eternal God is hid from many of the house of Jacob, to you it has shined like light in the world of darkness.
And yet the contrast the opposite of walking in the LORD’s ways is walking in other ways:
Lev_18:2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, I am the LORD your God.
Lev 18:3 After the doings of the land of Egypt, wherein ye dwelt, shall ye not do: and after the doings of the land of Canaan, whither I bring you, shall ye not do: neither shall ye walk in their ordinances.
Lev 18:4 Ye shall do my judgments, and keep mine ordinances, to walk therein: I am the LORD your God.
Lev 18:5 Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the LORD.
But if you read of all of the vial sexual immorality spoken of in Lev 18 practiced by the wicked Canaanites you say, well I’d not ever do that, I’d not walk in those ways I am good!
Eze_ 20:18 But I said unto their children (of Israel) in the wilderness, Walk ye not in the statutes of your fathers, neither observe their judgments, nor defile yourselves with their idols:
Eze 20:19 I am the LORD your God; walk in my statutes, and keep my judgments, and do them;
Eze 20:20 And hallow my sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between me and you, that ye may know that I am the LORD your God.
This is not a reprimand for vial sexual sin as in Leviticus 18, but rather forsaking what God says is right judgment and true service and worship in preference for what Israel’s father did prior to the revelation of God’s Law come down from heaven in the wilderness:
Therefore the prophet says:
Eze_20:21 Notwithstanding the children rebelled against me: they walked not in my statutes, neither kept my judgments to do them, which if a man do, he shall even live in them; they polluted my sabbaths: then I said, I would pour out my fury upon them, to accomplish my anger against them in the wilderness.
YHWH God says, ‘you don’t want to reason logically like me… my judgment, and look at the way I ask you to walk and serve me the way my Spirit has made known by my word to you as right and true judgment?
Then I would pour out my fury upon you and accomplish my anger against you.’
I asked las week and I will ask again, If you knew what the will of God is would you do it? Would you have joy in it?
Is this your reasonable service?