For His Good Pleasure

Philippians 2:12-13 ESV

“Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”

As Obedient Children of God

Paul wrote this to the saints in Christ Jesus, the called out ones who God has called out from the world to be different from the world now that we are being conformed to the likeness of Jesus Christ. We are the beloved of God, his children. We are those who have died with Christ to sin and who were raised with Christ to walk in newness of life in him, created to be like Christ in true righteousness and holiness.

If we have believed in Jesus with God-given faith, we were delivered from our slavery (bondage, addiction) to sin so that we might now become slaves of God and of his righteousness. Our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. Therefore, we are not to let sin reign in our mortal bodies, to make us obey its passions, for sin shall have no dominion over us.

For we are slaves of the one whom we obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness and to sanctification, which then ends in eternal life with God. For we are called of God to obedience to Christ/God, to leave our lives of sin behind us, and to now walk (in conduct, in practice) by the Spirit in holiness and righteousness and no longer in sin. For if we walk in sin, we will not inherit eternal life with God.

Therefore, if we are in Christ Jesus, by genuine faith in him, we should also be those who are walking in obedience to our Lord, who are listening to what he says and who are DOING what he commands (New Covenant). And as obedient children of God we are to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in us, both to will and to work for his good pleasure, i.e. the work we do we do in the power of God under his direction.

Now, this is not teaching “works-based salvation.” It is not teaching that we work to earn or to deserve our own salvation, for we are saved by God’s grace, through God-given faith, and this is not of ourselves, not of our own works done in our own flesh in our own power of our own choosing. But it is teaching that works are required of us, but they are the works of God which he planned in advance that we should walk in them in his power.

[Eph 2:8-10; 1 Co 15:58; 2 Co 9:8; Gal 5:6; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:9-14; 2 Thess 1:11-12; 2 Tim. 2:21; Tit 2:11-14; Jn 15:1-11; Tit 3:8; Jas 2:17]

Because We Love Him

So, what this is saying is that we can only be saved from our sins because of God’s grace, and because of Jesus’ sacrifice on that cross for our sins, and we can only live with Christ for eternity because Jesus was resurrected from the dead in victory over death, hell, Satan, and sin. But Jesus died to deliver us from our slavery to sin and to empower us to live godly and holy lives to his glory and praise, so we do have a part in our salvation.

But the part we have in our salvation is only because God is working in us both to will and to work for his good pleasure. We can only do the works of God because our God is living within us empowering and strengthening us to do the works he called us to do. So, when we surrender our lives to Jesus Christ, we submit to his will and purpose for our lives and we follow him in obedience as led and as empowered by his Spirit.

Now, we do this, not only in the power of God and under his direction, but we do this with fear and trembling. We do this in the fear of God, with all due respect and honor to our Lord who saved us and who called us to a holy calling. We take God and his word seriously, and we give our Lord the respect and honor due him. And we do not take lightly that he called us with a holy calling to his service to love and obey him in all things.

Also, what we do in all due respect to our Lord, and in obedience to him, with regard to our walks of faith in him and our spiritual maturity in Christ, is to obey his will and for his good pleasure. Because we love our Lord, we obey him, and we want to do what pleases him. We are not in this to please ourselves and to do whatever we want while claiming Jesus as our Lord and heaven as our eternal destiny.

For Jesus gave his life up for us on that cross so that we would no longer live for ourselves but for him who gave his life up for us and who was raised from the dead. He didn’t die just to save us but to transform us, and not just so we can go to heaven when we die, but so that we will serve him, and walk with him, and obey him while we still live on this earth. So, if you have not yet done so, I pray that you will surrender your life to Him today.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:21-25; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Matt 7:21-23; Ac 26:18; Rev 18:1-6; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

You are Loving and Forgiving

An Original Work / February 19, 2012
Based off Psalm 86

You are loving and forgiving,
Jesus, Savior, King of kings.
You provided our redemption.
By Your blood You set us free.
You are gracious; full of mercy.
No deeds can compare with Yours.
Great are You; there is none like You.
Glory be to Your name.

Teach me Your way, and I’ll walk in it.
O Lord, I will walk in Your truth.
May I not have a heart divided,
That Your name I give honor to.
I will praise You, O Lord, my Savior,
For great is Your love toward me.
You have delivered me from my sins.
Your grace has pardoned me.

You, O Lord, are full of compassion,
Slow to anger, bounteous in love;
Faithful to fulfill all You promise;
Glory be to Your name above.
Hear, O Lord, and answer Your servant.
You are my God. I trust in You.
Turn to me and grant Your strength to me.
You are my comforter.

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