The Love of Christ and the Grace of GodBro. David Chancellor
4/6/2003 11:00 AM
1 Peter 5:5-7
Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
We need to present ourselves to God and recognize our need of him. We can cast our cares on him because he loves us. He wants to take care of our cares. God wants to relieve of us of the load we carry. Sin had given us a real heavy load to carry. God came to take care of that load. Life may send many cares, but we can cast them all on God. Christ would unload us from the cares and troubles of life, if we will just give them to him.
The basis of the grace of God is his love for us. The basis of our faith is God's word and character.
At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight. All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
Christ spoke to God and thanked him that these things were revealed to those that came to him. Christ does care for us. The invitation isn't based on us, but on him. These were laboring under many things. They were working hard in their religiousness, but didn't know and love God. They didn't find peace, joy and happiness in following the law. When you find Christ, it's not a "long-faced" experience. When people become the "bride of Christ," why don't they see it as a honeymoon?
Turn to Christ and let him supply your needs.
O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
This expresses the care and love that Jesus has for you. These turned away the ones that would help. It wasn't a lack on God's part that caused them to go on suffering under their load of care. God sent the prophets, and they suffered while trying to show God's care. When sinners do as they do, they're pushing God away, but God's love and invitation is still there. God wants to help you, bring you through trouble, comfort you and care for you. He still cares about people even when they push him away.
From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
James was trying to help them to see where their trouble was. Humanity's troubles come when they don't seek God for help. There is nothing outside the bounds of God's abilities. Man would go about thinking they have it figured out, and that they know better than God. The reality is - God knows what is best, and will work out what is best for us. We need to ask God for his way.
Sometimes we ask for things that a loving God can't reasonably give. We might think it sounds good and wonderful, but we need to submit to God's will. Sometimes God says, "No". He see what it will produce and bring out in us. Sometimes we ask for the wrong thing. James was encouraging them to ask. He said God would give us good things. God wants to work out what is best for us.
Romans 8:35-39 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?" Look how much God cares for you! Which care are you carrying today? Take that care to God. There may be some things come along, but the love of Christ hasn't ended. God can make death not a fearful thing. You can live a life down here that is pleasing to God. Seek God for help with every care. God can give you the strength to say "No" to things that are wrong. If angels would come between you and the love of Christ, you can hold onto Christ. There is nothing that can happen in this world that can cause him not to care. This means that you can comfortably throw your cares on him.
In this war that America is fighting, God is being called on to defeat both sides. Someone can call down hate on you, but God will still care. Plead God's mercy on them. Don't call down hate on them.
There's nothing that would come between you and God, unless you allow it. If you refuse Christ, and turn him away, if you won't cast your cares on him, you won't feel his love. His love is an undying love. He would have mercy on every soul. He invites them to come. We can trust him because he loves us. He still has the care and concern. He bore so much for us, so that we can cast our cares on him. Let him carry yours today!