Monday, July 27, 2009

...feast upon the unfathomable riches of our redemption as found in the Lamb of God

by John Calvin

Without the gospel
everything is useless and vain;
we are not Christians;
all riches is poverty,
all wisdom folly before God;
strength is weakness,
and all the justice of man is under the condemnation of God.

But by the knowledge of the gospel we are made:
children of God,
brothers of Jesus Christ,
fellow townsmen with the saints,
citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven,
heirs of God with Jesus Christ, by whom
the poor are made rich,
the weak strong,
the fools wise,
the sinner justified,
the desolate comforted,
the doubting sure,
and slaves free.
It is the power of God for the salvation of all those who believe.
It follows that every good thing
we could think or desire
is to be found in this same Jesus Christ alone.

For, He was
sold, to buy us back;
captive, to deliver us;
condemned, to absolve us;

made a curse for our blessing,
sin offering for our righteousness;
marred that we may be made fair;
he died for our life; so that by him
fury is made gentle,
wrath appeased,
darkness turned into light,
fear reassured,
despisal despised,
debt canceled,
labor lightened,
sadness made merry,
misfortune made fortunate,
difficulty easy,
disorder ordered,
division united,
ignominy ennobled,
rebellion subjected,
intimidation intimidated,
ambush uncovered,
assaults assailed,
force forced back,
combat combated,
war warred against,
vengeance avenged,
torment tormented,
damnation damned,
the abyss sunk into the abyss,
hell transfixed,
death dead,
mortality made immortal.
In short, mercy has swallowed up all misery, and goodness all misfortune. For all these things which were to be the weapons of the devil in his battle against us, and the sting of death to pierce us, are turned for us into exercises which we can turn to our profit.

If we are able to boast with the Apostle, saying, "O hell, where is thy victory? O death, where is thy sting?" it is because by the Spirit of Christ promised to the elect, we live no longer, but Christ lives in us; and we are by the same Spirit seated among those who are in heaven, so that for us the world is no more, even while our conversation is in it; but we are content in all things, whether country, place, condition, clothing, meat, and all such things.

And we are
comforted in tribulation,
joyful in sorrow,
glorying under vituperation,
abounding in poverty,
warmed in our nakedness,
patient amongst evils,
living in death.
This is what we should in short seek in the whole of Scripture: truly to know Jesus Christ, and the infinite riches that are comprised in Him and are offered to us by Him from God the Father.


What worship and adoration flow from his pen to the Lamb of God for our great salvation. Amen?

*This is a portion from a preface of one of Calvin's commentaries
he wrote for Pierre Robert Olivetan French translation of the NT in 1534.
Though we do not pay homage to Calvin which is deserving of Christ alone,
we are grateful for how the Lord used this great patriarch
of the Christian faith in standing for and
guarding the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.


donsands said...

Very Edifying.

I was reading Colossians to my Mom yesterday: "If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory."

I have died with my Lord on the Cross. I have risen with Him from the blessed tomb. And before this I was dead in sin spiritually, and alive carnally.

I am in Christ, and nothing can seperate me from being in Jesus Christ, the One who has all authority in the universe, who forgave a sinner under His wrath, but absorbing all of my wrath in His body, and washing away my sins with His precious blood, and then putting His blessed robe of righteousness over me, so that I'm pure, and perfectly clean.
Amazing Savior!

And I know God will judge sinners, and when I see this judgment, will I realize even greater, that it should be me as well being judged, perhaps even more so?

Thanks Steve for the encouraging post.

SJ Camp said...

Great to hear from you weigh in on the great gospel of our Lord.

You are right, it is nothing short of amazing grace that has saved us.

Appreciate you brother,

Wm Mallory said...

Steve, this is great! I just posted these very words by Calvin on my blog the other day. I am just in awe by the Grace of God.

Oh, how important the presentation Gospel is to depraved men. Yet, there is the lack of the gospel being preached today. At times it brings me to tears.

Oh, but when the gospel is preached, it is pure joy to see God's amazing Grace in action! It unreal the transformation that takes place in the fowl heart of man and the inheritance Christ bestows upon us. All Grace!

I know that if it wasn't for the Grace of God, hell would be my portion.

Thanks for the post my brother Steve!

Susan said...

What can I say, I feel so unworthy, yet ever so grateful!

Thanks, this was just incredible...