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GRATITUDE FOR HIS GLORIOUS GRACE
Rev. Dr. Robert E. Donaldson
Published by World Wide Web Witness Inc.
ISBN 5775556 5 8
The Signature of Grace Divine
Grace is a delightful thing; to be gracious is an attractive feature; grace with glory is to be found only in God, from whose heart it flows in brilliance unimpaired, in history unreceding, obscure to the obfuscationist, apparent to the purged - the lens of their heart made clear, the delight of His children, the hope of mankind and limit-free source of freedom, in that its love is to redeem what is lost, provide for what is fallen, seek out what is sunk and release what is bound.
It is not indiscriminate: nor is it discriminating in negative gear, but rather in liberality it is like the winds of time, the radiance of stars, coming not from an icy mass but from a spiritual fire in which no dross can remain, indestructible in it issuance, indefatigable in its realm, bringing in many sons and daughters to the family of God, with entry visas signed in blood, that of the Lord Jesus Christ: issued in pardon, conferred in love and confined to faith, in Him, whose image this same Jesus, God as man, exhibited with illimitable fidelity, the criterion of infinity, the cure for infirmity and the ingenuity for kindly development, in the paths of duty and the ways of peace.
Gratitude for such a grace is often forgotten, when contention replaces conviction, aspiration evicts reception and thankfulness disappears like a distant aeroplane on the merging horizons of time and space. It is the task of this volume, not least, to confirm on many grounds such gratitude, in the joys of such grace, and to commend the place of grace for salvation for the lost, join with the faithful in this response to Him who is divine and show that reason itself is as lost without such a response, as a tin soldier in a fog, heartless, little, misshapen in mischief, the dim core of what might have been a star.
Gratitude for the Grace in the Glory of the Lord
In this volume, in fact, there are three major stresses. The first is gratitude. To be grateful is sometimes hard for the proud; but in the kingdom of heaven there is no room for these, for blessed are the poor in spirit, and the fate of the proud, as in Isaiah 2:14ff., is not attractive.
HE DID IT: are we who are His not grateful. Is this not to be shown as gratitude is, in fealty and fondness, in joy and pride IN HIM! Is He not the One to be glorified, praised and forwarded, so that the salt is savoury and the light is radiant ?
The second aspect is GLORY. God is glorious, and the foolish efforts to achieve glory when it is not present, or divine glory when it is His, or to be glorified as man, when he is mere creation, is so inglorious as to be perhaps the most obvious noxious element in mankind, making him like a weed, a mere deception, acting like a plant, but invasive, infestive, meretricious and with a shocking smell. It is well to concentrate on the glory of God for it is inspiring, apt for His children to ponder, stirring to the depths and plants deeper depths even as we gaze upon Him (II Corinthians 3:18).
The third emphasis in this work is His grace, already given attention above.
It is not something achieved or deserved, not something grasped or deserved: it just is in His power and in His nature to dispense it, not to the noble or to the wise, not to the beautiful or to the most-performing artisans of devoted toil. It is given where it is received. HOW this comes to be has vexed the minds of many, but it need not. The scripture is perfectly explicit. GRACE is poured out, is effusive, for God WOULD HAVE ALL to be reconciled in heaven or on earth by the blood of the Cross and SAYS SO (Colossians 1:19ff.).
To be sure, man CANNOT grab it, by willing, for he is excluded by sin from perception UNTIL converted (I Corinthians 2:14). Nor is his will irrelevant, for this is the GROUND of exclusion in the face of the divine desire NOT to condemn (as in John 3:17). Indeed, it is the specially denoted REASON for exclusion (John 3:19), even in contrast to the stated divine desire for the world, on the part of Him who has given a propitiation even, not for us only who believe, but for the entire world (I John 2:2).
He does not PAY for all, for that would make payment ineffective and God a goose, and indeed those for whom specifically He has been delivered up ALL go to heaven (Romans 8:32). He DOES however make a payment adequate for all, in sincerity offered to all, so that in HIS KNOWLEDGE (and indeed foreknowledge, not of our deeds or worth, but of the reception of His grace in His own discernment, before all time - Ephesians 1:4, Romans 9): it is given to the recipients only. Equally in His love, it is with desire, pressed on all (Isaiah 48:16ff., Matthew 23:37, Colossians 1:19ff., I Timothy 2, Luke 119:42ff., Jeremiah 48:30-33, 51:8-9, Jeremiah 1-14 cf. Ch. 2).
Thus you CANNOT go to hell without this being deemed of your will, by Him in HIS KNOWLEDGE (in the scriptural action and spiritual circuit, as in Romans 8:29ff.): that you REFUSE or the equivalent, to receive Him, even the only Door to Deity, the Saviour Jesus Christ (John 10:9, 14:6, Isaiah 43:9-10). To be sure it is He who performs the salvation on His own; but it is not wrought without respect to the grounds which HE knows, of the wayward preference, seen past history and time (Ephesians 1:4), psychology and human autonomy, known to God. Unlimited by sin in His sight, who bases it not at all on any human works, of will or other, it is no ground of merit, but an avenue of grace.
THIS grace is so pure, so lacking in limiting factors based on self or selfishness or mere plan or program, is so elemental, is so rich, is so vast in scope, rich in attainment in Calvary and all that went to prepare for that, that it is like teeming rain. Someone asks you, Is it raining ? has the drought broken. You reply: raining ? why it is teeming, God be praised.
But HOW MUCH are you grateful for SUCH grace as this ? It is also elemental, as deep as life, as broad as mind, as high as holiness and as joyful as exuberance. It is like growth in Spring. You cannot contain it, for it is everywhere.
On such things does this volume dwell, and in such joy is it presented in the name of Him in whom one dwells, and who dwells Himself in one's heart (Colossians 1:27, John 14:20).
MATTERS OF SEQUENCE AND SCENARIO
FOR THE ESCHATOLOGICAL TIMES AND CONFINES,
and GRATITUDE FOR HIS CONTINUING GRACE TILL THE END
drawing on Daniel and other prophets and prophecies
TIME TO LOOK AHEAD
MATTERS OF LOVE, WHOSE LABOUR
IS NEVER LOST
WHEN THE LOVE IS OF GOD,
AS SHOWN IN THE EARLY CHAPTERS OF JEREMIAH
TIME TO LOOK AROUND IN THE WORD OF GOD
JOY OF THE INCLINE
AND THE DIZZY DYNAMICS OF THE DECLINE
THE CHARACTER OF SPIRITUAL DECLINE
MATTERS OF DIRECTION, INSPECTION,
AND THE KING
News 377, The Australian June 8, 2006
TIME TO LOOK AROUND IN THE WORLD OF GOD
AND GRACIOUS CITIZENS OF THE PRINCE!
TIME TO LOOK AROUND IN THE WORKS OF GOD
FAITH WORKS BY LOVE
AND GRACIOUS CITIZENS OF THE PRINCE!
TIME TO LOOK AROUND IN THE WAYS OF GOD
POSITIVES AND NEGATIVES ...
CLARITY IS THE BEGINNING OF SIGHT
What is and What is Not
TIME TO LOOK AROUND IN THE WISDOM OF GOD
THE RUSH OF GRACE
TIME TO LOOK AROUND IN THE WONDER OF GOD
THE GRANDEUR OF GOD'S GLORY
Time to Look Up to the Glory of God
OF SPIRITUAL SPLENDOUR
beyond the HORIZONS OF HUMAN POWER
SERMONS FROM SPEECHES - STEPHEN
Time to Look On to the Conclusion in the Power of God
OF SPIRITUAL SPLENDOUR
within the HORIZONS OF HUMAN EXPERIENCE
SERMONS FROM SPEECHES II
JOSHUA'S LAST SPEECH
Time to Look from Beginning to End in the Grace of the Lord,
MEETING WITH GRACE,
AND FAMILY MEMBERS OF THE GENERATION OF GRACE
GRACE, LIBERTY, LOVE,
RIGHTEOUSNESS, TRUTH, MEANING
AND THEIR UNIQUE CONSISTENCY
IN THE BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE