King's Business - 1922-11

T HÈ K I N G ’ S B U S I N E S S

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a son, is forever past. Nor does the sinning Christian draw on the mercy and favor of God when he is restored t(3 fellowship in the household of God. How easily mercy and favor might be exhausted and overdrawn! On the con­ trary, the Christian, sheltered under the blood of propitiation, and standing in the merit of his Advocate, is on a basis where no past offenses have accu­ mulated against him; for he is cleansed and forgiven under the legal justice of the Father. The justice of God is made possible and is righteously demanded in view of the shed-blood of His own Son. Let it not be supposed that this divine plan of restoration of the child of God to the Father’s fellowship will react in an attitude of carelessness on the part of the Christian. The sufficient answer to this challenge is three-fold: (1) True confession is the expression of a very real repentance, or change of mind, which turns from the sin. This is the exact opposite of becoming accustomed to the sin, or becoming careless ,with re­ gard to it. (2) This very revelation is given, we are told, not to encourage, or license us to sin; but rather .that “ ye sin not” (be not sinning). According to the Scriptures and according to hu­ man experience, the believer’s safety in the faithfulness and justice of the Father and the advocacy and propitia­ tion of the Son, is the greatest incentive for a holy life. It is clearly revealed that God has, by other and sufficient means, guarded against all careless sin­ ning on the part of those whom He has eternally saved through the merit of His Son. And (3) God can righteously deal' with sin in no other way than through the absolute value of the blood of His Son; but when sin has been laid on the Substitute, it can never be laid back on the sinner, or on any other. In the cross of Christ, the question of a ' possible condemnation because of sin is adjusted forever. Mercy and grace can never be commingled with divine justice. Boundless grace is disclosed in the pro- DON’T WASTE A PENNY OF YOUR MONEY

the righteous; and he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” According to this Scripture, four vital elements enter-into that divine forgiving and cleansing which constitutes the res­ toration of a sinning saint,: (1) Confes­ sion is the one and only condition on the human side; (2) Absolute forgive­ ness and cleansing is promised on the divine side; (3) The Christian, while sinning, has been safe as to divine con­ demnation, because of his Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the right­ eous; and (4) Divine forgiveness and cleansing is exercised toward the be­ liever in unchallenged faithfulness and justice because-Christ is “ the propitia­ tion for our sins.” In this transaction, as it is thus dis­ closed, the believer makes no disposi­ tion of his own sin; that has been made for him. So also the Advocate makes no excuses for the sinning Christian, nor does He plead for the clemency of the Father in behalf of the believer who has. sinned. The Advocate presents the sufficiency of His own blood to meet the condemnation of every sin. The Father does not act in gracious kindness when forgiving and cleansing the believer: He acts in strict faithfulness to His cov­ enant and promise of eternal keeping, and in strict justice because of the shed- blood. Such is the unchanging value of the propitiation which Christ made in His blood. It should also be noted that, accord­ ing to this revelation, the sinning saint is never before any tribunal other than that of his own Father. The eternal relationship between the Father and His child can never be set aside. The Father may correct and chasten His erring child (1 Cor. 11:31, 32; Heb. 12:13- 15),' and through confession the child may be restored to the place of fellow­ ship; but all of this is wholly within the inner circle of the family and house­ hold of God. Condemnation, which would expel the child from the place of

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