Believing, Rejoicing, Receiving
Commitment to faith in Christ comes from your love of Him. Joy is the result of the surrender of your life to God.
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again dear radio friends. How in the world are you? Yes, that greeting establishes the fact that this is indeed your good friend Bob Cook. And I’m glad to be back with you for a few moments to share from the Word of God.
We’re in 1 Peter 1. Speaking of our Lord Jesus Christ, Peter says, “Whom having not seen ye love. In Him, though now you see Him not, yet believing ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.”
The joy of salvation follows the belief, the commitment of faith. And the commitment of faith follows the commitment of love. And, “Whom having not seen ye love. In whom, believing, ye rejoice.” Now it’s a deeply personal experience that can never be fully verbalized – unspeakable, can’t fully describe it. And it’s heavenly, it’s full of glory. The very, the very shine of heaven is produced in your heart and life through the Lord Jesus Christ by the indwelling Holy Spirit. But it’s first the commitment of love.
Do you really want to give yourself to Jesus? That is the big question. That’s what keeps many people from becoming Christians. They are theology… That, it isn’t the theological problem that bothers them. No, no, that’s just the, that’s just the mental façade that they erect. The real problem is they don’t want to give up themselves to Christ. And so the joy follows the commitment of faith. And the commitment of faith grows out of the commitment of your heart to Jesus Christ.
Now what happens? Then you have the word ‘receiving’. Believing, rejoicing, receiving. Verse 9 – “receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.” Now that word ‘end’ actually means the, the planned, ultimate result. Greek word ‘telas’ we get our, our English word ‘teleology’ or ‘teleological’, meaning something that’s planned. “Receiving the planned result of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.” The ultimate reason for the commitment of faith is the working out of God’s plan of salvation. The reason, the ultimate reason for committing yourself to Jesus Christ in faith is that God’s plan of salvation might be worked out, receiving the end, “the planned result of faith, even the salvation of your souls.”
Well, Peter goes on to say of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently. “Those who prophesized of the grace that would come unto You, searching what or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify when they testified before Him the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.
So unto them it was revealed that not unto themselves but unto us they did minister those things that are now reported unto You by them that have preached the Gospel unto You, with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven, which things the angels desire to look into. Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind. Be sober and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought onto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” That whole thing hangs together there – that’s the reason I read it all.
Now this is kind of a little parenthesis there. He said, “This salvation is something that mystified the prophets who talked about it. But,” it said, “as they searched,” it says, “unto them it was revealed that not unto themselves but unto us they did minister the things which are now reported unto you by the Gospel.” Isaiah 53 for example speaks of the sufferings of the Lord Jesus Christ as though it were history.
According to Peter, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Isaiah found out that he was talking about the Messiah unto whom it was revealed that, “Not unto themselves but for us they did minister the things that are preached to us by the Gospel. He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before the shearers are dumb, so He openeth not His mouth. He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our inequities, the chastisement of our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray. We have turned, every one to his own way. And the Lord hath laid on Him the inequity of us all.” – Isaiah 53.
And Peter says, “Isaiah found out as he was searching, and asking that this was concerning the Messiah.” Interesting, isn’t it? So that you can realize as you read your Bible, and you can see that it is a unity from start to finish. The New is in the Old, contained; and the Old is in the New, explained – when you speak about the Old and New Testament’s.
You can see that as you read your Bible and realize that it is a unity, that it holds together, that there’s a very good reason for it holding together. Almighty God inspired it. Peter says in a later passage that the Scriptures are of no private interpretation, “But holy men of old spake as they were hustled along, borne along, by the Holy Ghost.” – 2 Peter 1:21.
This isn’t something that was cooked up by a conspiracy of people who decided they were going to write a holy book. Nor indeed was it a literary accident. But the Holy Spirit was the author. That’s why you and I take our stand on an inerrant, infallible Bible. Let me tell you something, young people: any time people point out that the Bible and science disagree, you just say, “Just wait a few years until science catches up.”
I remember in my own salad days, it was popular for people in the field of science to claim that some of the Bible references to places were inaccurate, in that they said the places never existed. One such was Ur of the Chaldees, a place from which Abraham came. “Oh no. See, it never happened. This was just made up.” Well later on somebody was digging over in that area and found out that Ur of the Chaldees actually did exist, and that it was a very real place, a, a commercial crossroads actually. Just wait a while. If, if people say that the Bible and science disagrees, tell them, “Wait a while till science catches up.” That’s all. God’s word is true. “Forever or Lord, Thy word is settled in heaven.” You can depend upon the Bible, the Word of God.
So there’s, the prophets. They were asking, “What or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glory that should follow?” The, the atonement that was, that was completed on the cross of Calvary was prophesized in the Old Testament – that’s what Peter is saying. And of course he’s following up what the Lord Jesus showed them.
The two people who were on the road to Emmaus, our Savior beginning in Moses and in all the prophets, explained to them the things concerning Himself. And He said, “Oh foolish ones and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken ought not…” – He used a very strong little Greek verb meaning ‘he did, wasn’t it absolutely necessary’ – wasn’t it absolutely necessary for Christ to die and to enter into His glory?
And so Peter is echoing that same truth, the sufferings of Christ and the glory that should follow. The Old Testament contains the story of salvation, given prophetically before it occurred in history. But all of it agreeing with the historical facts as they are brought out in the New Testament. He says, “Which things the angels desire to look into. There will forever be a mystery about this matter of salvation in that it is impossible either for our human minds or even angelic minds to comprehend the grace of God, where God Himself would come down the stairways of the stars and become a human being, and take upon Himself all the sins of all the world.”
But He did. “God commendeth His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. If while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His son, how much more being reconciled will be saved by His life. For when we were yet without strength, Christ died for the ungodly.” You have three things there in Romans, chapter 5: ‘without strength’, ‘sinners’, and ‘enemies’. This is the profile of the unsaved soul.
God knew it way ahead of time. He knew the possibility of sin when He created man and woman with the ability to say ‘no’ to God. He planned for the redemption of that lost and fallen race. And now you and I, today, are benefiting by the grace of God, and knowing that the Lord Jesus paid it all, and that our debt is paid, and that the holiness of God is forever vindicated. The law of God is satisfied. The debt has been paid. The penalty has been paid. And you and I may go free.
“You hath he quickened who were dead in trespasses and sins,” says Paul in Ephesians 2:1. Halleluiah! Aren’t you grateful for salvation? No, you don’t understand how it all works. How is it that God could create man with the possibility of sinning, foresee the fact, plan for salvation, and then call you and me whom He foreknew, them He predestinated to be conform to the image of His son. “And them He called, and them He justified, and them He glorified.” Read Romans 8 to get the progression of that.
No, I don’t understand how it happened. But I am rejoicing in the fact that it did happen, and that Jesus our blessed Lord is my living Savior. He’s mentioning your name and mine before the Father this very moment, because the Bible says, “He ever liveth to make under cession for them that come unto God by Him.”
Praise God from whom all blessings flow. Wonderful to know the blessed Gospel story. No your mind, nor even angelic minds can comprehend all of the depth and the wonder of this story of redemption, but it’s all true. So he says, “Wherefore,” verse 13, 1 Peter 1:13 – “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind. Be sober and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the appearing of Jesus Christ. Wherefore,” he says, “gird up the loins of your mind .and be sober.”
Now, what does it mean to ‘gird up the loins of your mind’? We only have a, a minute or so left here, of time. Well the, the Bible uses that expression always when somebody was either getting ready for work or a war. ‘Gird up your loins, fight like men, gird up your loins to the work’. It means you know, pull on your, pull on your, trousers and put on your shoes, and let’s go. Roll up your sleeves. I suppose the nearest thing to our English colloquialism will be, “Roll up your sleeves!” you know. Well, however you wish to put it, the idea is ‘Get ready for the work, and ready for the battle’. I’ll talk about that the next time we get together.
Dear Father, thank you for salvation, thank you for Jesus, thank you for Your redeeming love. Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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