The Character of God
THE HOLINESS OF GOD
Your eyes are too pure to approve evil, and You cannot look on wickedness with favor (Habakkuk 1:13).
But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear (Isaiah 59:2).
THE JUSTICE OF GOD
For the LORD is righteous, He loves righteousness; the upright will behold His face (Psalm 11:7).
But the LORD of hosts will be exalted in judgment, and the holy God will show Himself holy in righteousness (Isaiah 5:16).
God is a righteous judge, and a God who has indignation every day. If a man does not repent, He will sharpen His sword; He has bent His bow and made it ready (Psalm 7:11-12).
The Depravity & Condemnation of Man
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).
For all of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment (Isaiah 64:6).
For as many as are of the works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who does not abide by all things written in the book of the Law, to perform them’ (Galatians 3:10).
The Great Dilemma
He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous, both of them alike are an abomination to the LORD (Proverbs 17:15).
Far be it from You to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike. Far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly (Genesis 18:25)?
While maintaining His holiness and justice, the Bible also affirms that God is love, and that in love He has responded to the plight of man.
MOTIVATED BY LOVE
God is love. By this the love of God is manifested in us, that God sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins (1 John 4:8-10).
THE CROSS OF CHRIST
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus (Romans 3:23-26).
He who was delivered over because of our transgressions, and was raised because of our justification (Romans 4:25).
Repentance begins with a recognition and confession that what God says about us is true that we have sinned.
For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. Against You, You only, I have sinned and done what is evil in Your sight, so that You are justi!ed when You speak and blameless when You judge (Psalm 51:3-4).
A genuine recognition of our sinfulness and guilt will also lead to genuine sorrow, shame and even hatred for what we have done.
For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate (Romans 7:15).
Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from this body of death (Romans 7:24)?
Apparent sincerity of confession alone is never definite evidence of genuine repentance. It must be accompanied by a turning away from sin.
Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from My sight. Cease to do evil (Isaiah 1:16).
. . . therefore every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire (Matthew 3:10).
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen (Hebrews 11:1).
. . . and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform (Romans 4:21).
FAITH BASED ON THE PROMISES OF GOD
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that who- ever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life (John 3:16).
‘Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved . . . ‘ (Acts 16:31).
EXAMPLE OF A BELIEVER
… worship in the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh . . . (Philippians 3:3)
THE BASIS OF GENUINE ASSURANCE
True conversion: A true Christian is a new creation and will live a life that reflects God’s radical work of re-creation in his/her life.
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come (2 Corinthians 5:17).
You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they (Matthew 7:16)?
Assurance is based upon self-examination in the light of Scripture.
Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you unless indeed you fail the test (2 Corinthians 13:5)?
These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life (1 John 5:13).
TEST OF BIBLICAL ASSURANCE
1 John 1:5-7 (Walking in the Light), 1 John 1:8-10 (Confession of Sin), 1 John 2:3-4 (Obedience), 1 John 2:9-11 (Love for the Brethren), 1 John 2:15-17 (Hatred for the World), 1 John 2:24-25 (Perseverance in Doctrine), 1 John 3:10 (Righteousness), 1 John 4:13 (Spirit’s Testimony), Hebrews 12:5-8 (Discipline)