The Fullness of God’s Work

Day 7 - March 30 / Pastor Scott Winchester

Philippians 1:6

“And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”

The Westminster Shorter Catechism #36 asks this question: “What are the benefits which in this life do accompany or flow from justification, adoption, and sanctification?” Here’s how it answers that question: “The benefits which in this life do accompany or flow from justification, adoption, and sanctification, are, assurance of God’s love, peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Ghost, increase of grace, and perseverance therein to the end.”

The catechisms of our church are arranged in a systematic way. This question falls in the section of the Catechism that is considering our redemption that has been secured by Jesus. The flow of thought goes something like this: (1) Jesus is our Redeemer; (2) the Holy Spirit applies the work of redemption to us by giving us the gift of faith through his effectual call; (3) our coming to Christ in faith includes God declaring us righteous in his sight (justification), bringing us into his family (adoption), and beginning the work of conforming us to the image of his Son (sanctification). This is great news! It tells us that “he has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Col. 1:13-14). When we talk about the gospel, this is most often where our attention dwells. And it’s no wonder, for this is where everything changes for the sinner.

But this catechism question is telling us something even more: it tells us that this work of God also provides to his children real spiritual blessings in the here and now. While the grace of sanctification certainly keeps the Christian busy each and every day, there are some wonderful tangential gifts given to us through our union with Jesus. I want to explore each of these benefits over the course of the week, and it’s my hope that they will provide a sure foundation for our prayers in the days to come. God’s work of salvation is a full work, and it will end when we’re finally glorified. But until then we’d be foolish not to study and embrace those things which God has given us in Christ: assurance, peace, joy, spiritual progress, and perseverance.
Prayer Points:
  • Praise God that our salvation is a perfect and complete work
  • Confess to God the five benefits listed above that you struggle to experience, knowing that he is able to supply your every need
  • Thank God for the powerful gift and privilege of prayer
  • Ask God to increase your affection for Jesus so that the things which threaten to mask God’s blessings are vanquished in the light

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