“Christ is not only the object of faith and his glorious appearing the pole star of hope but he is also united to believers now in the bonds of mystic union. And they are united to him. Because Christ is united to believers, he is in them in the life they now live upon earth — he is formed in them the hope of glory. And because believers are now united to Christ, they are in him in the glory of his exalted state — their life is hid with Christ in God. Christ is with them where they are; they are with him where he is. A great mystery, beyond doubt. But this is what is true of Christ and his church.” (John Murray, “Structural Strands in New Testament Eschatology.” Unpublished manuscript, Westminster Theological Seminary Library, Philadelphia).
(In preparation for the Sunday afternoon Bible study on 2 Timothy 4:1–5 at Trinity Presbyterian Church of the OPC)
What does genuine love look like? How should we relate to fellow believers? How should we deal with those outside the church? How do you react to terrible wrong? And what does genuine, unmasked love have to do with heaping coals of fire?
The 101 Bible Study meets the Friday, February 2, at 6:30 p.m. in a home in the Astoria area. Call 971/238-6101 for details.
“The essence of ungodliness is that we presume to take the place of God, to take everything into our own hands. It is faith to commit ourselves to God, to cast all our care upon him, and to vest all our interests in him. In reference to the matter in hand, the wrongdoing of which we are the victims, the way of faith is to recognize that God is judge and to leave the execution of vengeance and retribution to him.” (John Murray, The Epistle to the Romans, pp. 141–142).
“The basis and spring of sanctification are union with Christ, more especially union with him in the virtue of his death and the power of his resurrection.” (John Murray, The Epistle to the Romans, Vol. 2, page 109).
“The way to determine our spiritual gifts is not to ask, ‘What is my “thing” spiritually, my spiritual specialty, that sets me apart from other believers and gives me a distinguishing niche in the church?’….The question to ask is, ‘What in the situation in which God has place me are the particular opportunities I see for serving other believers in word and deed (cf. I Peter 4:10f.)?’ ‘What are the specific needs confronting me that need to be ministered to?’ Posing and effectively responding to this question will go a long way not only toward discovering but also actually using our spiritual gifts.” (Richard B. Gaffin, Perspectives on Pentecost, p. 53).
Quotes used in this Friday’s 101 Bible Study on Romans 12
“If grace is conditioned in any way by human performance or by the will of man impelling to action, then grace ceases to be grace.”
“[T]here is no security in the bond of the gospel apart from perseverance. There is no such thing as continuance in the favor of God in spite of apostasy; God’s saving embrace and endurance are correlative.”
(John Murray, The Epistle to the Romans, Vol. 2, pages 70 & 88).
Friday evening’s 101 Bible Study in Astoria focuses on the first half of Romans 11.