"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)


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  • « The Question of Altar Calls | Main | What is Really Happening in the Lord's Supper? »

    The Preach, The Counselor, and The Congregation

    By Kevin DeYoung and Pat Quinn

    pg. 21

    The word of God is sufficient.

    All we need for life and godliness, for salvation and sanctification has been given to us in the Bible. This doesn’t mean the scriptures tell us everything we need to know about everything or that there is a verse somewhere in the Bible that names all our problems. The Bible is not exhaustive. But it is enough. We don’t have to turn away from God’s Word when we get to the really hard and messy stuff of life. The Bible has something to say to the self-loathing, the self-destructive, and the self-absorbed. We do not need to be afraid to preach and counsel from the Word of God into the darkest place of the human heart.

    The Word of God is authoritative.

    The Christ who is Lord exercises his lordship by means of His Word. To reject His Word is to reject Him. In a day filled with sermonettes for Christianettes, we must not forget that what most distinguished Jesus’ preaching from that of the Scribes and Pharisees was His authority. The Word gives definitive claims, issues obligatory commands, and makes life changing promises. All three must be announced with authority. This authority may be spoken in a loud voice or a soft whisper, in a prayer or in a personal note, with an outstretched finger or an open embrace. Authority is not dependent on personality or ones position within the church building. Authority comes from God’s Word and the counselor, no less than the preacher must bring this authority to bear on all those encountered, especially on those who swear allegiance to Christ.

    God’s Word is relevant.

    Terms change. Science changes. Our experience changes. But the human predicament does not change, the divine remedy does not change, and the truth does not change. This makes the word of God eternally relevant. Whatever work we can accomplish in the church apart from the Word of God is not the work that matters most. When it comes to matters of heaven and hell matters of sin and salvation, matters of brokenness and healing, we are powerless in ourselves to effect any of the good change we want to see. This is why we must rely on the unchanging Word of God. If Christ is relevant—and what Christian would dare say He is not—then we can never ignore what he has to say to us. This is less wisdom in our new techniques than we think and more in God’s Word than we imagine.

    Posted by Marco on January 6, 2015 04:37 PM

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