Sunday, October 11, 2009
THE RIGHTEOUS SHALL FLOURISH AND GROW
"The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon."
First, who are the "righteous"?
They are sinners saved by the grace of God in, through, and by the Lord Jesus Christ.
If we are righteous before God, our righteousness is not our own but CHRIST'S righteousness imputed 9charged, accounted, given) to us. Christ's righteousness has become truly ours by God's sovereign declaration of grace. We are those whom God has justified by the blood of Christ, and we are eternally secure in HIM.
Secondly, how will we who are made righteous in Christ "flourish" and "grow"?
It is by the life and power of Christ through God the Holy Spirit in the new birth and in His continual indwelling presence that we flourish and grow spiritually.
Christ is the Vine from whom all life comes and is given by the Spirit.
We who are made righteous IN HIM are given life FROM HIM, and we flourish, i.e. bear fruit, UNTO HIM. (John 15:1-9)
We do not produce fruit unto God, We bear fruit unto God. (Romans 7:4)
We "grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." (2 Peter 3:18)
This growth is not a process whereby sin becomes less and less of a problem and we become progressively holier. In this life even the righteous are still sinners saved by grace and will never rise above that status. This growth is a continual awareness and conviction of our sin whereby we are motivated by the Holy Spirit to war against the flesh. This growth is a continual looking to, resting, in and following Christ as our only hope of glory now and forever. The more we see, know, learn and rest upon Christ, the more we flourish and grow.
By Bill Parker