A Prayer of General Thanksgiving – Book of Common Prayer

September 9, 2010 § Leave a comment

Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we thine unworthy servants do give thee most humble and hearty thanks for all thy goodness and loving-kindness to us and to all men. We bless thee for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life; but above all for thine inestimable love in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Ch for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory. And, we beseech thee, give us that due sense of all thy mercies, that our hearts may be unfeignedly thankful; and that we show forth thy praise, not only with our lips, but in our lives, by giving up our selves to thy service, and by walking before thee in holiness and righteousness all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Spirit, be all honor and glory, world without end. Amen.

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Atonement and Common Grace

August 28, 2010 § Leave a comment

Dr. R. Scott Clark has written and article on this very subject that has been published in Table Talk.
It is worth a read.

If anyone is interested in reading on this subject more, a large amount of primary source material can be found at the following website.

Terry W. West

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Worth Quoting – James Montgomery Boice on Common Grace to All Persons

August 16, 2008 § Leave a comment

I have spoken of “common grace” in the sense that God’s genuine affection has been poured out upon all persons regardless of who they are or what wrongs they may have done. As Jesus said, God “causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous” (Matt. 5:45). Common grace? Yes! But in another sense, it is not at all common. It is most uncommon. It is extraordinary, and it leads us to the most uncommon or extraordinary love of all. We find it in Romans 5:6-8: “At just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

James Montgomery Boice (A.D. 1938-2000)

Worth Quoting – James Montgomery Boice on Common Grace

August 16, 2008 § Leave a comment

“If you are not a follower of Jesus Christ, you are in the same position as Joseph’s brothers at this point in the story (see Genesis 43:15-34). You have sinned against your elder brother, the Lord Jesus Christ, by denying his claims and refusing his proper lordship over your life. He has used means to awaken you to your need and bring you to an open confession of sin. But you have gone only so far as God’s tactics have forced you to go; even though he has been most loving and gracious toward you, you have not acknowledged his hand in these benefits.

I want you to awaken to God’s goodness. I want you to see that all you are and all you have are a result of God’s common grace to you.”

James Montgomery Boice (A.D. 1938-2000)

Our Just and Merciful God

April 3, 2007 § Leave a comment

Ezekiel 18:22-13, 22 None of the transgressions which he has committed shall be remembered against him; because of the righteousness which he has done, he shall live. 23 Do I have any pleasure at all that the wicked should die?” says the Lord God, “and not that he should turn from his ways and live?

In Ezekiel chapter eighteen the people of Israel were accusing God of injustice.(Ezekiel 18:1-2) They were claiming their innocence of guilt and the injustice of God for punishing them for sins they did not commit. God rebukes them through the prophet, and declares the standard by which He judges men and the grounds of his mercy.

To summarize the chapter, God teaches Israel that each man stands alone before his law, that if he has keep the law and done righteously he will surely live and not die, but if he has transgressed the law and done wickedly he will suffer the penalty of the law and surely die.(Ezekiel 18:3-18 )

In verse 19, the people were complaining that even though they were innocent God was judging them for their father’s sins and was not accepting their repentance and righteousness. God rebukes them and declares that if they have indeed obeyed then they will surely live, and thus exposes their falsehood. He shows them clearly that his justice and mercy are both grounded in his good intentions toward his people.

I believe that we can infer from verses 22-23 that God gives his law to his people from his good intention that they reflect his holiness by the keeping of that law. The giving of this law is not out of pleasure for enacting the penalty, but rather out of his intention that his people reflect his holiness. The apostle Paul, in Romans 7:10, makes this statement:

10 And the commandment, which was to bring life, I found to bring death.

Paul teaches us that the law was intended to bring life, but because of our sin it brought death. If the giving of the law to God’s people was intended to be for their good, i.e. so that they would by keeping the law reflect God’s holiness and goodness, then certainly God would provide mercy to the wicked man that repents of his wickedness and turns to God. If the giving of the law was intended to bring life, then certainly the death of the wicked can bring no pleasure to God. A God who intends the well being of his creatures by giving his law would certainly grant mercy to those who repent of their transgressions and desire to live. So we can see that both justice and mercy are grounded in God’s good pleasure and kind intention towards his creatures.

Blessings in Christ,

Terry W. West

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