Tuesday, March 13, 2012

8 Reasons to Tell Each Other About God's Work of Saving Us

“Sing to the Lord, all the earth!
Tell of his salvation from day to day.”
- 1 Chronicles 16:23

1. To think right thoughts about God and His character.
Satan’s ploy in the garden was to deceive Eve into thinking that God was not who He revealed Himself to be.  That same tactic is used by our enemy all the time! We need to think rightly about God and nothing so sanctifies our thoughts of Him as a careful contemplation of the cross.

2. To promote His Gospel.
Over and again the Bible calls us to speak of His salvation “that the nations might hear!”  Those who are fluent in the Gospel have something to say to the Lost.
1Chronicles 16: 24 “Declare his glory among the nations, / his marvelous works among all the peoples! / 25 For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, / and he is to be held in awe above all gods. / 26 For all the gods of the peoples are idols, / but the Lord made the heavens.”

3. To aid in our worship.
Our corporate worship is massively intensified if we all come together with fresh thoughts of Jesus and His cross.  Our prayers, singing, preaching, fellowshipping and reading of the Word are enlivened in intangible, but very real ways.
Psalm 40: 9 “I have told the glad news of deliverance / in the great congregation; / behold, I have not restrained my lips, / as you know, O Lord. / 10 I have not hidden your deliverance within my heart; / I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation; / I have not concealed your steadfast love and your  faithfulness / from the great congregation.”

4. To encourage our own souls.
MLJ said, “Your problem is that you listen to yourself, rather than talk to yourself.”  We are in need of daily preaching the cross to our own souls – its accomplishments, its application, and its illustration of the love of God.
Jude 1:3 “Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation…”

5. To have something to say to our Accuser!
John Newton said: “Be thou my shield and hiding-place!  That, sheltered near thy side, I may my fierce accuser face, And tell him, "Thou hast died."  Or consider the words of Charitee Bancroft’s wonderful hymn: “When Satan tempts me to despair / And tells me of the guilt within / Upward I look and see Him there / Who made an end of all my sin / Because the sinless Savior died / My sinful soul is counted free / For God the Just is satisfied / To look on Him and pardon me”
Or consider the words of Psalm 70:3 "Let them turn back because of their shame / who say, “Aha, Aha!” / 4 May all who seek you / rejoice and be glad in you! / May those who love your salvation / say evermore, ‘God is great!’”

6. To Prepare us for Heaven
Isaiah 25:8 "He will swallow up death forever; / and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces, / and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth, / for the Lord has spoken. / 9 It will be said on that day, / ‘Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us. / This is the Lord; we have waited for him; / let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation.’”
Thinking on salvation is one of our primary heavenly activities.  Pondering His saving work will never grow redundant or tiresome!  So, we do good heaven prep work by telling each other now all that we can discover of His saving grace!

7.  To Encourage Each Other
Romans 1: 11 “For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— 12 that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith, both yours and mine. 13 I want you to know, brothers, that I have often intended to come to you (but thus far have been prevented), in order that I may reap some harvest among you as well as among the rest of the Gentiles. 14 I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish. 15 So I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome.”
Paul writes to Christians, but tells them he wants to preach the Gospel to them – the Good News of Jesus and His atoning death!  Why?  Because it will be a source of profound mutual encouragement to speak to each other about what Jesus did on their behalf (“that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith”).

8.  To Strengthen Our Cross-Centered Authenticity
A growing grasp of justification by grace through faith alone allows men and women to stand without fear of condemnation before God and each other. One of the great aids in our personal sanctification is this very thing – the ability to treat our sin as sin.  This kind of authenticity is increased as Believers find their understanding of Jesus’ cross-work expanded.