From Your Pastor, October 30

From Your Pastor, October 30

In Love He Predestined Us for Adoption
 
“In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.”
— Ephesians 1.4-6

 On July 31, 1547, John Knox was sentenced as a galley slave in the hull of a French ship, The Notre Dame. Knox was chained to an oar for nineteen months, where he was exposed to scorching heat and unbearable cold. He was faced with ruthless and inhumane conditions; it was a time of hellacious suffering.
 
In early 1549, however, Knox was released through a prisoner exchange between France and England. King Edward VI, a Protestant, had sought tirelessly to locate and release Knox. Although Knox was a free man, he could not return to Scotland because it had become a Catholic stronghold. As a result, he journeyed to London as an exile from his homeland. These events radically altered his life.
 
In 1558, Knox began a masterpiece that would take over a year to complete. A Treatise on Predestination was published in 1560, and this document was his longest, most arduous composition. Knox ferociously attacked the Anabaptist position, which did not fully concede to God’s final and authoritative electing of those whom He chooses. Knox wrote:
 
“Let the whole Scriptures be read and diligently marked, and no sentence (rightly understood) shall be found, that affirmeth God to have chosen us in respect of our works, or because He foresaw that we should be faithful, holy and just. But to the contrary, many places shall we find (yes, even so many as intreat of that matter) that plainly affirm that we are freely chosen according to the purpose of His good will, and that in Christ Jesus.”
 
To Knox, the doctrine of predestination was the great leveler. Man’s salvation rested wholly upon God’s work in Christ. Consequently, God’s divine election humbled men and at the same time raised them up and seated them in the heavenly places (cf. Ephesians 1). On the one hand it humbled men because they could not save themselves. While on the other, it meant that God had set his love and affection upon them—it allowed them to be bold and courageous. And this is exactly what happened in Knox’s life. He could handle all that life threw at him due to the fact that he knew God was fully in control and fully loved him. This doctrine removed the idea of a capricious god and replaced it with the God who is immutable. Or put another way, “If His counsels be mutable and inconstant, then ceaseth He to be the God, who neither is, nor can be changed.”  Knox needed an unchanging God in his ever-changing world.
 
How about you?

 “In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.”
— Ephesians 1.4-6

—Pastor Knox