This week, I have been struggling with faith. I have seen a mountain of obstacles (things I want to change about myself), and I have meditated on that mountain instead of meditating on my God. I have been filled with discouragement and despair because the simple truth is I cannot become holy apart from Him! Rather than wrestling with God in prayer about these things and meditating on what His Word says about His character, I have attempted to commandeer the vessel of my life again--striving, planning, manipulating my circumstances, and consequently plunging headlong into despair. God in His grace led me to this post by John Piper this morning:
Good News! Relying on Grace Gives God Glory
March 10, 2009 By: John Piper Category: Commentary
It is very good news that God designs his glory to be magnified through the exercise of his grace.
To be sure, God is glorified through the power of his wrath (Romans 9:22), but repeatedly the New Testament (and OT, e.g. Isaiah 30:18) says that we should experience God’s grace so that God gets glory.
Ponder how this works in the prayer of 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12, To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Paul prays that God would fulfill our good resolves.
How? He prays that they would be done “by [God’s] power.” That is, that they be “works of faith.”
Why? So that Jesus would be glorified in us.
That means the giver gets the glory. If we fulfill a good resolve “by his power” he gets the glory.
We have faith; he gives power. We get the help; he gets the glory. That’s the deal that keeps us humble and happy and keeps him supreme and glorious.
Then Paul says that this glorification of Christ is “according to the grace of God and the Lord Jesus.”
God’s answer to Paul’s prayer that we rely on God’s power to do good works is grace. God’s power to enable you to do what you resolve to do is grace.
That’s the way it works in the New Testament over and over. Trust God for gracious enabling and he gets the glory when the help comes.
We get the help. He gets the glory.
That’s why Christian living, not just Christian conversion, is good news.
“[Serve] in the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 4:11)
“[May you be] filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:11)
“It is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.” (2 Corinthians 4:15)
“We have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)
“And not only that, but he has been appointed by the churches to travel with us as we carry out this act of grace that is being ministered by us, for the glory of the Lord himself and to show our good will.” (2 Corinthians 8:19).
“…to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.” (Ephesians 1:6)
Ok, I am going to go wrestle with God now because I need Him. John 15:5 "I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing." (You would think I would remember this great truth since the title of this blog comes from this verse!) Please pray for me!
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