Devotional for May 2022

“It is the Spirit that quickeneth – the flesh profiteth nothing – the words that I speak unto you – are Spirit and are life!” [Jn.6:63]

“…God hath chosen…things which are not – to bring to nought things that are – that no flesh should glory in His presence. (30) But of Him – are ye in Christ Jesus – who of God is made unto us wisdom and righteousness and sanctification and redemption: (31) that according as it is written – He that glorieth – let him glory in the Lord.” [1Cor.1:29b-31]

“I will cry unto God Most High – unto God – that performeth all things for me. (3) He shall send from heaven and save me from the reproach of him that would swallow me up! Selah. God shall send forth His mercy and His Truth.” [Ps.57:2-3]

These descriptive statements of holy scripture comprise one of the most explicit declarations of the absolute sovereignty of our Lord Jesus Christ that there is in all of the Bible! These three texts bring forth — from all of God’s elect unto eternal salvation – a most heartfelt – “Praise the Lord!”.

The first one is from the Lord Jesus Christ, Himself! And, from this text He makes it plain and clear that He – and He alone – is the God of true Spiritual Life which He can simply speak into existence! Think about it – His words are Spirit and are Life!”

The second portion of scripture — from first Corinthians one — boldly declares that our Lord God Almighty has chosen — from the reality of this inglorious world of fallen human flesh – that through the holy glory of His Son, Christ JesusHe has accomplished all the divine requirements for Eternal Salvationfor all of those whom He has chosen and placed in His eternal and onlybegotten Son, Jesus Christ! It is He – and only He – that is our Wisdom and Righteousness and Sanctification and Redemption! This sums it all up quite nicely! What else could any of us needy sinners possibly need. Col.3:11b declares: Christ is all and in all”.

And then from Ps.57:2-3 we have the prophet David descriptively declaring that he will cry “…unto God Most Highunto Godthat performeth all things for me. He shall send from heaven and save me from the reproach of him that would swallow me up.” Which, ultimately would be that common enemy of the Lord God and all His children – that old devil-serpent Satan!

1Pe.5:8-9 without reservation declares: Be soberbe vigilantbecause your adversary the devilas a roaring lion, walketh aboutseeking whom he may devour: (9) whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.” So, then, successful resistance of the devil-serpent Lion is performed through the steadfast performance of the faith of our Lord and Savior! Even – our being led by the Holy Spirit — in the faith of the Lord Jesus Christ (see: Ro.8:14 and Gal.2:16)! For we walk by faithnot by sight.” [2Cor.5:7]  Remember, a close relationship and walk with the “Lion of Judah” is the best safekeeping we can have from a growling, bloodthirsty, devil-serpent Lion that seeks to devour us! We are no match for him — but he is no match for Christ, our God! We will look more into these wonderful scriptures and relish more of the wonderful treasures of the Word of God. Praise His Holy Name!

For Christ’s Glory Only! – John Carpenter

Devotional for March 2022

(2)“For the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus – hath made me free from – the law of sin and death.(3)For what the law could not do – in that it was weak through the flesh – God – sending His own Son  – in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh. (4) That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us – who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” [Ro.8:2-4]

“Be not deceived; God is not mocked. For whatsoever a man soweth – that shall he also reap! (8) For he that soweth to his flesh – shall of the flesh reap corruption – but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap Life Everlasting!” [Gal.6:7-8]

Due to that which the Lord Jesus has accomplished on our behalf through His atoning work as our eternal Surety and Substitute – let us now meditate on what impact the Word of God declares this wonderful work of Christ will have in our walking through this fallen-in-sin world. Once again, let’s go to the Word of God to get the explanation; after all, “Scripture does interpret Scripture”.

Ro.6:4 plainly describes: Therefore, we are buried with Him (i.e. Christ Jesus) by baptism into deaththat like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Fatherwe also should walkin newness of Life!”  What is this newness of Lifetalking about? It is talking about Regeneration! It is talking about having been born from above – by the Word of God and the Holy Spirit of God – whom Jesus, the eternal Son of God incarnate prayed to God the Father for Him to send unto us. Just as Jn.14:16-17 says: And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter (viz. the Holy Spirit) that He may abide with you forever; (17) the Spirit of Truth; whom the world cannot receive because it seeth Him notneither knoweth Him: but ye know Himfor He dwelleth with you and shall be in you.” This is the personal — true and genuine spiritual quickening experience that all the elect of God will have! The Holy Spirit of God bears personal witness with the spirit of His true children that they, indeed, are in and a part, of His Holy Family! [see: Ro.8:16-17; 1Jn.3:23-24 and 4:13] The newness of Lifethat is spoken of in Ro.6:4 is the same as what the Holy Spirit inspired Peter to write about in 2Pe.1:3-4> As His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto Life and Godlinessthrough the (full-) knowledge of Him (Christ Jesus) that hath called us to glory and virtue: (4) whereby (or, through whom) are given (or, have been bestowed) unto us exceeding great and precious promisesthat by these ye might be partakers (or, sharers) of the Divine Nature (of Jesus Christ) having escaped the corruption (or, the spontaneous decay) that is in the world through lust.” This is the exceeding greatnessof the promises of our Lord Jesus Christ!

Walking in the newness of Lifein Christ and being partakers of the Divine Natureof Christ is what it means in the Gal.6:7-8 text above when it describes he that soweth to the Spiritshall of the Spirit reapLife Everlasting”. And, this is all actively accomplished for us — by and through the Lord Jesus Christ – because we are His called and chosen and faithful! [see: Rev.17:14] All of this teaching from the Word of God portrays for us the true believer’s active following of the Lord Jesus Christ – and not the Law! As Gal.2:16 says:knowing that a man is Not justified by the works of the lawbut by the Faith of Jesus Christ; even we have believed in Jesus Christ that we might be justified by the Faith of Christand Not by the works of the lawfor by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.” Praise His Wonderful Name!

-For Christ’s Glory Only!

John Carpenter

 

 

Devotional for February 2021

(2)“For the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus – hath made me free from – the law of sin and death.(3)For what the law could not do – in that it was weak through the flesh – God – sending His own Son  – in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh. (4) That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us – who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” [Ro.8:2-4]

“Be not deceived; God is not mocked. For whatsoever a man soweth – that shall he also reap! (8) For he that soweth to his flesh – shall of the flesh reap corruption – but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap Life Everlasting!” [Gal.6:7-8]

To pick up where we left off last month – we are looking at what the Law of sin and deathrefers to. Once again – let’s look at how scripture interprets scripture. The Holy Spirit from 2Cor.3:7-8 says: But if the Ministration of deathwritten and engraven in stones was gloriousso that the children of Israel could  not steadfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which (glory) was to be done away: (8) How  shall not the Ministration of the Spiritexceed in glory!”

So, therefore, from the Ro.8:2-4 text the Holy Spirit of the Holy Word of God contrasts the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus with that which He calls the Law of sin and death”.  And,  from the 2Cor.3 text He is comparing the same two by calling the one the Ministration of death and the other the Ministration of the Spirit! These two different texts interpret and expand each other! Praise the Holy Spirit of the Holy Word of God!

It is obvious that the Law of sin and deathrefers to the Holy, just and good Law of God[see: Rom.7:12] that was delivered unto Moses on Mt. Sinai by God, Himself! Hence, does Gal.3:19 pose the question: Wherefore thenthe Law?” Or rather: For what purpose did our God give to us His Holy Law? Especially when we are plainly told from Ro.3:19: Now we know (i.e. we know without a doubt) that what things soever the Law saith (or, whatsoever the Law literally means) it saith (or, it utters; or, it preaches; or, it declares) to them who are under the Law: (or, to them who have been born under, and in, the Law – which includes everybody in the history of fallen humanity) that every mouth may be stopped (or, that every language of every mouth of fallen-in-sin humanity may be silenced) and all the world may become guilty (or, condemnedby the curse of the Law) before God.”

This leads us right up to what is plainly put forth from Ro.3:20 which delivers God’s divine conclusion by saying: Therefore, by the deeds of the Lawthere shall no flesh be justified in His sight”. – Why?! – Because:  “for by the Law is the (full) knowledge of sin.”  So, you see, the scriptures from here declare the absolute weakness of the Law of sin and deathto justify our fallen-in-sin flesh – or, to declare before Holy God – us, in our flesh, as being righteous in God’s sight. This is because by God’s Law we can only come to fully know and understand that we are hopeless and helpless sinners! We need God to be our Savior – from God – and ourselves – under His Holy Just and Good Law! In other words: We need the Lord Jesus Christ! He is the only Hope that we have of our ever being eternally saved! Praise His Holy Name!

The Lord willing – we shall continue to see how this plays out in our walk through this world.  

 

Devotional for January 2022

(2)“For the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus – hath made me free from – the law of sin and death.(3)For what the law could not do – in that it was weak through the flesh – God – sending His own Son  – in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh. (4) That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us – who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” [Ro.8:2-4]

“Be not deceived; God is not mocked. For whatsoever a man soweth – that shall he also reap! (8) For he that soweth to his flesh – shall of the flesh reap corruption – but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap Life Everlasting!” [Gal.6:7-8]

These two passages of holy scripture provide for us true children of 3xholy God — a wonderful New Year’s Resolution. In fact, they exhort us to pursue a resolution for a whole new life and walk through this sinful world. A resolution to follow – not the law – but the Spirit of Christ!

Rom.8:2 contrasts the freedom of the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus with the bondage of the law of sin and death. With the sound principle of studying the Word of God — that stands absolutely true when it tells us that — “scripture interprets scripture” – let’s examine what the whole context of Ro.8:2 is here saying.

First of all, let’s contemplate what God’s Word refers to when it says: the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus”. Remember 1Co.15:45 that says: And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soulthe last Adam (Christ Jesus) was made a quickening Spirit.”. And, from Jn.10:10 Jesus said in reference to those who are described as being His sheep (for whom He died) – He said, I am come that they might have Lifeand that they might have it more abundantly!” And then there is also Jn.5:21 from where our Lord Jesus declares: For as the Father raiseth up the dead and quickeneth themeven so the Son quickeneth whom He will.” All of which makes perfect sense! Jesus iswithout a doubtthe incarnated eternal Son of God. This means that He is – One with God the Father and One with God the Holy Spirit – and they are One with Him. This means that the Lord Jesus Christ — He is God!

Now what does the Word of God tell us concerningthe law of sin and death? What exactly is this law? The Holy Spirit tells us from Ga.3:10-13For as many as are of the works of the laware under the curse. For it is written, Cursed is everyone that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the lawto do them. (11) But that no man is justified by [or lit. in] the law in the sight of Godit is evident! ForThe just shall live by [or lit. out of] faith”. (12) And the law is not [out] of faith; but the man that doeth them [i.e. anyone that doeth — the works of the law] shall live in them.”

According to the Spirit, this scenario constitutes a fallen human effort in futility! Because, there is no approved and acceptable Justification before God that we can even hope to manufacture from our striving to live a righteous life out of the works of the law. But, Praise the Lord God our eternal Savior for vs.13 – which says:Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the lawbeing made a curse for usfor it is written: Cursed is everyone that hangeth on a tree.” This is the truth of the Gospel of Christ’s glory only! He bore the consequences of our curse so we could be clothed with His perfect righteousness! We will look more deeply into this next time.

For Christ’s Glory Only!  John Carpenter

Devotional for December 2021

“We are of God – he that knoweth God – heareth us; he that is not of God – heareth not us. Hereby know we the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error. (7) Beloved, let us love one another for love is of God; and everyone that loveth – is born of God – and knoweth God! (8) He that loveth not, knoweth not God – for God is love! (9) In this was manifested the love of God – toward us – because that God  sent His only begotten Son into the world – that we might live through Him. (10) Herein is love! Not that we loved God – but that He loved us – and sent His Sona propitiation for our sins.” [1Jn.4:6-10]

At this time of year, from the last phrase of this passage of holy scripture, we see a descriptive announcement of God’s perfect purpose in His sending His only begotten Son into this lost, sinful and law-cursed world. This wonderful announcement plainly tells us that God loved us and sent His Sona propitiation for our sins! In other words, God’s Son – was sent into this world to be the complete and total satisfaction of whatever divine requirements there are that need to be met for the perfect approval and acceptance of every chosen member of God’s eternal and heavenly household. This includes even the perfect Justice that God demands to be carried out where our sins are concerned. And, in Christ – and by Christ – this as been accomplished! This is the pure truth of the gospel of the holy glory, only, of our Lord Jesus Christ!

The question is – just exactly for whom has this great salvation been wrought – or totally worked out? And, from vs.6-9 John is inspired by the Holy Spirit to address this precise matter. These men and women – boys and girls – receive the announcement and presentation of the gospel of God’s grace and believe it! They “hear” by the presence and power of the Grace of the Holy Spirit – and they know that what they hear is the gospel truth of God. Furthermore – they “Love” what they hear because the love of Christ controls them and causes them to love the truth of the gospel of the glory, only, of Jesus Christ, this is what manifests that they are indeed the true children of God!

Before this – 1Jn.3:5 – states: And ye know that He was manifested to take away our sinsand in Him is no sin.” This text unfolds even more wonderful news! Not only has the incarnated eternal Son of God satisfied the total penalty and punishment that our sins deserve – but God has also used His Son to be all our perfect righteousness that makes us to be approved and accepted in God’s Holy Presence! “In Him is no sin! In Christ is where God has created us (see: Eph.2:10)! He has chosen us in Himbefore the foundation of the worldthat we should be holy and without blame before Him in love (see: Eph.1:4)! The “Good News” just keeps getting better and better! God, Himself, fulfills that which He commands of us from Rom.13:14 which says: But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christand make not provision for the flesh to fulfil the lusts thereof.”

This then leads us into “seeing” the Saving Purpose of God’s sending His only-begotten Son into this sin filled world as stated in 1Jn.3:8> “…For this purpose the Son of God was manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil.” And, vs.10 says: In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil.”

And, just who are these children of the devil? They are even as 1Jn.4:5 describes> They are of the worldtherefore speak they of the world and the world heareth them.” Pr.20:12 declares: The hearing ear and the seeing eyethe Lord hath made even both of them!” Praise His Name! Jesus Christ really did come into this world this world – to save sinners! All glory to Him! Let’s all celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus the Christ, into the world of fallen humanity (see Rom. 8:3-4).

For Christ’s Glory Only! -John Carpenter

 

 

Devotional for November 2021

(13) “But Nowin Christ Jesusye who sometimes [or, once werefar off – (lit.) have been made nigh – by [or, in] the blood Christ.(14) For He is our Peace – who hath made both one – and (lit.) having broken down the middle wall of partition {between us}; (15) having abolished in His flesh the enmity, {even} the law of commandments {contained} in ordinances; for to make [or, to create] in Himself {of} twain (lit.) into One New Man – {so} making Peace! (16) And {that} He might Reconcile both unto God in One body – (lit.) through the cross – having slain the enmity thereby:  [or, found therein] (17) And (lit) having come – He preached Peace to you which {were} afar off – and to them that {were} nigh. (18) For through Him – we both have access (lit.) in one Spirit unto the Father. (19) Now therefore – ye are no more strangers and  (lit.) sojourners – but fellow-citizens with the saints – and of the household of God!” [Eph.2:13-19]

The main subject of this particular context of descriptive scripture is the blessed and wonderful pure truth of the gospel of the glory of God’s grace concerning the Reconciliation between Holy God and all His chosen sinner/children (whom He authoritatively includes in the phrase with the saints). For them — this has been accomplished — and is presently being maintained – through the person and work of – the Prince of Peace, Himselfthe Lord Jesus Christ. For the Word of God explicitly declares from 1Jn.4:17: Herein is our love made perfect that we may have boldness in the Day of Judgment: because as He isso are wein this world!” This is the pristeen, sin-cleaned standing that we now – by the grace of the faith of Jesus Christ – can right now realize that we have! This is Reconciliation with God – through the eternal accomplishment of our Redemption by Christ Jesus. Through Him – we have been exalted from the dunghill of this sinful world –  into the glory of His wonderful grace. Praise the Savior!

You see, in order for there to be no violation of God’s Holiness – there are certain Godly legal requirements that must be met as far as His sinner/children are concerned before we could be truly Reconciledwith God. If these requirements of God’s law are not met – then our standing before the Lord God – our verdict before His Holy Court – would eternally be guilty! And, our souls would necessarily be lost in our eternal condemnation.

This is precisely why we need a Sovereign Savior Substitute! This is why the eternal Son of God was sent by the Divine three in One – to be incarnated — into the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh. So that – (lit.) The righteous requirements of the Law might be fulfilled in uswho walk not after the fleshbut after the Spirit.” [Rom.8:3-4]  This is why Rom.8:1 announces the pure gospel truth: There is thereforeNowno condemnation to them which arein Christ Jesuswho walk not after the fleshbut after the Spirit.”  It is because – as Eph.1:4 tells us: According as He hath chosen usin Him (i.e. in Christ Jesus) – before the foundation of the worldthat we should be Holyand without blamebefore Him in love.”

This means that yet another grand blessing of God’s grace must come to us through the person and work of Christ, our Substitute – and that is our Justification! We cannot be accepted and approved in our Eternal Reconciliation with Godbefore we are Eternally Justified. 2Co.5:21 must be completely fulfilled as a righteous requirement as well. God made Jesus to be our Substitute! He made Him to become our sin and take our eternal punishment for it. This is the only way for us to be clothed in His eternal perfect righteousness – and be able thereby to be eternally Reconciled with God – (and with all of His Holy Household)! Praise His Eternal Savior Son of God!

For Christ’s Glory Only! – John Carpenter