Devotions - Read Online
Thursday | 08 December 2016
The Covenant of the Father is made known through the expression of His will. His desire, motivated by love, was to bring to birth a multitude of sons. We have been foreknown by name and predestined to become sons of God according to the Father’s will. His will is revealed to us and expressed toward us by His word. It is the unique capacity of the Father to give identity and life to a multitude of sons by His word. The apostle James summarised the Covenant of the Father by saying, ‘In the exercise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of firstfruits among His creatures’.
It is important to recognise that sanctification to our name as a ‘certain firstfruits’ is the replacement of the whole economy of sacrifice and offering in the Old Covenant. If a son of God has been sanctified to the work that belongs to their name, then they will be fulfilling the substance of all sacrifice and offering. A sanctified life as a son of God and a member of the body of Christ, is the personal fulfilment and alternative to the outward keeping of the Law with its ordinances and offering.
We can rejoice that the Father has reconciled all men to Himself through the offering of Jesus Christ on the cross. He has forgiven the sin of the whole world. However, the forgiveness of God does not mean that any man is free to continue living as a son of disobedience. On the contrary, the forgiveness of God means that every man is now free to choose to be a son of God and completely accountable for their choice. The freedom that has been established by the Father’s mercy has made every man accountable before God. The only freedom for any individual is to be the son the Father predestined them to be.
For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren.
Also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will.
Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. (18) In the exercise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures.
But now having been freed from sin and enslaved to God, you derive your benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome, eternal life.
Samuel said, "Has the LORD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices As in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams."