1. God, who is eternal and uncreated, created all things outside of Himself by the power of His words and all of it was perfectly good. God was the source of creation and through the sole power of His words, He spoke all things into existence, and those things all reflected His goodness and godliness. Because God is the source, He is also invested in what He created and sustains it.
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.
He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power.
2. The Bible is the only inspired, inerrant, and infallible Word of God and our highest authority. The witness of the Bible in 2 Timothy 3:16, the witness of the history of the Bible throughout time, and finally the witness of God Himself through the Bible proves and points to the evidence for this doctrine. The Bible provides all that we need in knowledge and support for life and godliness during our time on Earth, stated in 2 Peter 1:3. The Bible expresses our reality as humans with sin and God and the need for a Messiah to satisfy the wrath of God the Father against sin and enlightens humans to a new life in Christ after the understanding and acceptance of the gospel.
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16-17
3. God elected His own people for eternal life and salvation. In His attributes of being omniscient and omnipotent, God has chosen certain human beings to be part of His own people, to be elect, saved, and redeemed from sin and death through Jesus Christ. He chose who would be of His own people before the creation of the world before any human existed. By doing this, it is a personal decision of God and is an example of the love He has for His bride, the church. Predestination of the elect rests solely upon the work of God, and the human does not have the ability to choose God over its sinful nature.
...even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will...
4. Human beings are in a state of total depravity in that they cannot, by their own means, choose to obey God. Because of Adam & Eve’s original sin, the concept of sin (any failure to reflect the image of God in nature, attitude, or action) runs in the genealogical lineage of the human race, making humans, in their nature, unable to redeem themselves from the damage of sin and to be unable to “choose God” in their decisions and actions. Because of Jesus’ coming, life, and death on the cross, it makes a way that God might choose those to be His elect and therefore choose to follow Him, not because of our their will, but resting upon His.
For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot.
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience — among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ — by grace you have been saved.
5. Jesus was the promised sacrificial substitute who took upon Himself the full punishment that we deserve for our sin and this sacrifice satisfies the perfectly righteous and just wrath of God. Every human being who has ever lived since the beginning of the human race, with the exception of Jesus Christ, has failed to live up to the standard of moral perfection, required to be in unity with the perfection of God Himself. Each human is infected with sin, or any failure to reflect the image of God in nature, attitude, or action has created that person deserving of eternal separation from God. Jesus has paid the punishment we deserve through his death on a cross and we are reconciled to God and considered “holy and blameless” before Him, removing the stain of sin and the need for punishment.
...for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
But he was pierced for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with his wounds we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have turned—every one—to his own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.
...he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him
6. God’s elect are justified by faith alone through the death of Jesus on the cross. The adoption and sanctification of Christ’s people rests upon Jesus’ death on the cross as Christ took upon Him and satisfied the wrath of God for the sin of humans, and that justification is independent of good works or any works according to the law. Good works and actions are not necessary to be saved through Christ’s blood, although good works naturally come out of true faith, as James explains in James 2:18.
Yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.
For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law.
...he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him
7. The call of the sinner to God rests solely upon God’s redemptive work and granting, resulting in transforming effects in the sinner’s life. The call of the gospel message may fall on the ears of many throughout time and history, but it is through the work of the Holy Spirit to ultimately change hearts and defeat the human’s natural inclination to rebel against the ways of God and against God’s law. Because the call of God working in the sinner’s heart is more powerful than it, the sinner is unable to resist that call.
No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.
...for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth…
2 Timothy 2:25b
8. True worship is rooted in truth and sound theology that stirs our affections resulting in an authentic response. As Jesus said in John 4:24, true worshipers will “worship in spirit and truth.” True worship is rooted in understanding rightly the truth of who God is and allowing that to bring the sinner / God’s elect to a place of deep emotional response, often resulting in outward action. Actions or routines are not reliable indicators of true worship, but beginning with a foundational knowledge of God and allowing that truth to bring one to a place of emotional response is correct. Worship is for the sole exaltation of God alone and its success is not measured by our pleasure or gratification from the experience (that is, daily life and worship services).
I appeal to you, therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.
But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.
9. All people will stand before God in a final judgment of their lives. Because God must be a perfect and righteous judge, he must punish sin and reward obedience. Therefore, on the day that Christ will judge all people, they will be rewarded according to their deeds. God will accordingly give them their reward or their punishment, which can be argued is the judgment from God, the purpose of the universe, Himself. God’s elect are not exempt from this judgment, but there will be no condemnation for them because of the substitute of Christ on their behalf, as stated in Romans 8:1.
Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out — those who have done what is good will rise to live, and those who have done what is evil will rise to be condemned.
He will render to each one according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. There will be tribulation and distress for every human being who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, but glory and honor and peace for everyone who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek.
Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.
10. The Holy Spirit was the promised gift of God to do the work of God that dwells in the believer, empowering them and the church in worship, life, and sanctification. The Holy Spirit was promised to God’s people through Old Testament prophets, as in Ezekiel 36. Once Jesus lived and died, the promised Spirit was given to the universal church and personally as God’s elect to live with and in the believer through our time alive. God the Holy Spirit is one person of the Holy Trinity, is eternal, and is fully God. Among many things, He convicts and teaches the believer in the ways of holiness and works the law of God into their heart. He brings the believer into fellowship and communion with God.
And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my judgement
God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.
11. God in His mercy delays his immediate destroying wrath on sin and graciously blesses all through the byproducts of a good creation, even to sinful humans outside of God’s elect. Outside of salvation, all good blessings and gifts from God that humanity experiences are able to be received and enjoyed by all people, even those who are not elected for salvation, due to God’s graciousness and mercy. Humanity can experience health, happiness, prosperity, and the like because of this “common grace” granted to mankind by God. This same grace also allows totally depraved humans to create activity and do work that is relatively “good.” Additionally, God places restraint upon the negative repercussions of humans’ state of total depravity and often limits sin’s absolute domination over humankind.
From the time that he made him overseer in his house and over all that he had, the LORD blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; the blessing of the LORD was on all that he had, in house and field.
The Lord is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made.
For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
In past generations he allowed all the nations to walk in their own ways. Yet he did not leave himself without witness, for he did good by giving you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying your hearts with food and gladness.
12. Jesus Christ will return to Earth in the future physically, visually, bodily, and audibly to gather his own and complete the divine redemption of humankind and completely triumph over all evil and death. The physical return of Christ to Earth is the hope and promise that every enemy opposed to the holy, perfect, and righteous throne of God will be eternally and permanently defeated at that time. Christ will also judge and reward humankind personally in a final judgement. When this takes place is unknown but to God the Father. This event will encompass the goal of human history: to redeem full unity and fellowship between God and His people and end the conflict of opposing forces in the climax of tension where God and his righteousness will be finally and completely victorious.
Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death.
1 Corinthians 15:24-26
For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.
Written September 27th, 2020 by Brian Richard Griffin
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