365 days with Newton


Because he lives.…

‘Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.’ Hebrews 13:20–21

The act ascribed to the God of peace: brought him from the dead. This does not mean merely his resurrection by power, but his restoration and exaltation by authority, as Philippians 2:9 [Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name]. These are two affecting thoughts of his people, that:
(i) he was dead. Such was his love he willingly died for his sheep. And they remember how he died—not in peace with his friends about him, but upon the cross.
(ii) he is alive. Hereby their justification is confirmed; they have a pledge of their own resurrection; they have an Advocate and Protector, and because he lives they shall live also.
To sinners I would hint:
(i) he is now exalted—therefore not to be trifled with. See that ye refuse not him that speaketh from heaven [Hebrews 12:25].
(ii) he is exalted to save. There is forgiveness with him. He can pardon and sanctify the vilest. To faith in his name, all things are easy.

FOR MEDITATION: When believers look unto Jesus, the representative of his people, as rising from the grave on their behalf, they are enlightened and strengthened and comforted. They find his promise, because I live you shall live also [John 14:19], sweetly and wonderfully fulfilled in their souls. What is your hope with respect to your present and final acceptance before God? Is it founded on what Jesus did and suffered in the flesh, and in the glorious testimony God gave to his obedience in raising him from the dead? This is the only plea which the Scripture affords or which will be accepted in the great day.
Church Catechism, Lecture 22, 12 January 1766

SERMON SERIES: HEBREWS 13:20–21, NO. 3 [1/2]

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