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Nothing but Christ


In His days Judah will be saved,
And Israel will dwell securely;
And this is His name by which He will be called,
“The Lord our righteousness.”

—Jeremiah 18:1–6


Can you then in this sense say, The Lord our righteousness? Were you ever made to abhor yourselves for your actual and original sins and to loathe your own righteousness? For as the prophet beautifully expresses it, ‘your righteousnesses are as filthy rags’ [Isaiah 64:6]. Were you ever made to see and admire the all-sufficiency of Christ’s righteousness and excited by the Spirit of God to hunger and thirst after it? Could you ever say, my soul is athirst for Christ, yea, even for the righteousness of Christ? O when shall I come to appear before the presence of my God in the righteousness of Christ! Nothing but Christ! Nothing but Christ! Give me Christ, O God and I am satisfied! My soul shall praise thee forever.

Was this ever the language of your hearts? And, after these inward conflicts, were you ever enabled to reach out the arm of faith and embrace the blessed Jesus in your souls, so that you could say, ‘my beloved is mine and I am his?’ If so, fear not, whoever you are. Hail, all hail, you happy souls! The Lord, the Lord Christ, the everlasting God, is your righteousness. Christ has justified you, who is he that condemneth you? Christ has died for you, nay rather is risen again and ever liveth to make intercession for you. Being now justified by his grace, you have peace with God and shall, ere long, be with Jesus in glory, reaping everlasting and unspeakable fruits both in body and soul. For there is no condemnation to those that are really in Christ Jesus.

—George Whitefield, “The Lord Our Righteousness” in Lee Gatiss (Ed.), The Sermons of George Whitefield (Crossway, 2012), 1:275–276.

Justified, Sanctified, Holy

In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell securely; And this is His name by which He will be called, “The Lord our righteousness.” —Jeremiah 18:1–6 Can you then, with believing Thomas cry out, ‘My Lord and my God.’ Is Christ your sanctification, as well as your outward righteousness? For the word righteousness, in the text, not only implies Christ’s personal righteousness imputed to us but also holiness wrought in us. These two, God has joined together. He never did, he never does, he never will put them asunder. If you are justified by the blood, you are also sanctified by the Spirit of our Lord. —George Whitefield, “The Lord Our Righteousness” in Lee Gatiss (Ed.), The Sermons of George Whitefield (Crossway, 2012), 1:275.

The Back Way to Popery

In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell securely; And this is His name by which He will be called, “The Lord our righteousness.” —Jeremiah 18:1–6 [N]ever did greater or more absurdities flow from the denying any doctrine, than will flow from denying the doctrine of Christ’s imputed righteousness. And first, if we deny this doctrine we turn the truth, I mean the word of God, as much as we can, into a lie and utterly subvert all those places of scripture which say that we are saved by grace; that it is not of works, lest any man should boast, that salvation is God’s free gift and that he who glorieth, must glory only in the Lord. For, if the whole personal righteousness of Jesus Christ be not the sole cause of my acceptance with God, if any work done by or foreseen in me, was in the least to be joined with it, or looked upon by God as an inducing, impulsive cause of acquitting my soul from guilt, then I have somewhat whereof I may glory in myself. Now boasting is excluded in the great work of our redemption. But that cannot be, if we are enemies to the doctrine of an imputed righteousness. It would be endless to enumerate how many texts of scripture must be false, if this doctrine be not true. Let it suffice to affirm in the general, that if we deny an imputed righteousness, we may as well deny a divine revelation all at once. For it is the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end of the book of God. We must either disbelieve that or believe what the prophet has spoken in the text, ‘that the Lord is our righteousness.’ But further: I observed at the beginning of this discourse, that we are all Arminians and Papists by nature. For as one says, ‘Arminianism is the back way to popery.’ And here I venture further to affirming that if we deny the doctrine of an imputed righteousness whatever we may style ourselves we are really Papists in our hearts. And deserve no other title from men. Sirs, what think you? Suppose I was to come and tell you that you must intercede with saints, for them to intercede with God for you. Would you not say I was justly reputed a Papist missionary by some and deservedly thrust out of thy synagogues by others? I suppose you would. And why? Because, you would say, the intercession of Jesus Christ was sufficient of itself, without the intercession of saints and that it was blasphemous to join theirs with his, as though it was not sufficient. Suppose I went a little more round about and told you that the death of Christ was not sufficient, without our death being added to it; that you must die as well as Christ, join your death with his and then it would be sufficient. Might you not then, with a holy indignation, throw dust in the air and justly call me a ‘setter forth of strange doctrines?’ And how then, if it be not only absurd but blasphemous to join the intercession of saints with the intercession of Christ, as though his intercession was not sufficient; or our death with the death of Christ, as though his death was not sufficient: judge ye, if it be not equally absurd, equally blasphemous, to join our obedience, either wholly or in part, with the obedience of Christ, as if that was not sufficient. And if so, what absurdities will follow the denying that the Lord, both as to his active and passive obedience, is our righteousness? —George Whitefield, “The Lord Our Righteousness” in Lee Gatiss (Ed.), The Sermons of George Whitefield (Crossway, 2012), 1:272–274.

Lord’s Day 49, 2018

I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; From where shall my help come? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to slip; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel Will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper; The Lord is your shade on your right hand. The sun will not smite you by day, Nor the moon by night. The Lord will protect you from all evil; He will keep your soul. The Lord will guard your going out and your coming in From this time forth and forever. —Psalm 21 Night Hymn Before The Sabbath In the dark and silent night, Ere has broke the lonely light, We arise, to thee to pay, Lord, the service of this day. Holy Comforter, to thee Our glad praises offer we; With the eternal Father one, One with the eternal Son. Pity this frail flesh of ours, Which, with all his subtle powers, The old tempter would assail;— Let him not, O Lord, prevail. Lord, to thee the flock pertains; Let it not be held in chains; Thou, O Jesus, with thy blood, Hast redeemed that flock to God. Loving, gracious Shepherd, keep Watch o’er these thy wand’ring sheep; Bring them to the fold above On the shoulders of thy love. Smite the hellish enemy, Bid the Prince of darkness flee; Drive the robber-fiend away, From his jaws, Oh pluck the prey. Triumph now, O Christ, our Lord! Angel-choirs, with glad accord, Sound the praises of our King, Holy, holy, holy, sing. Glory to the Father give; Glory to the equal Son; Glory to the Spirit give, While eternal ages run. —Horatius Bonar, Hymns of Faith and Hope, Second Series (James Nisbet & Co., 1878). Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation if you can possibly help it. But if you’re in need of a good sermon, try these.

In Preparation for the Lord’s Day: Comfort, Comfort Ye My People

Comfort, Comfort Ye My People GENEVAN 42 Isaiah 40:1–5 Comfort, comfort ye My people, speak ye peace, thus saith our God; comfort those who sit in darkness, mourning ’neath their sorrows’ load. Speak ye to Jerusalem of the peace that waits for them! Tell her that her sins I cover and her warfare now is over. Yea, her sins our God will pardon, blotting out each dark misdeed; all that well deserved His anger He no more will see nor heed. She hath suffered many a day, now her griefs have passed away; God will change her pining sadness into ever-springing gladness. For Elijah’s voice is crying in the desert far and near, bidding all men to repentance, since the kingdom now is here. O that warning cry obey, now prepare for God a way; let the valley rise to meet Him, and the hills bow down to greet Him. Make ye straight what long was crooked, make the rougher places plain, let your hearts be true and humble, as befits His holy reign; for the glory of the Lord now o’er earth is shed abroad, and all flesh shall see the token that His Word is never broken. —Hymns to the Living God (Religious Affections Ministries, 2017). The current hymnal for this series is Hymns to the Living God, published by Religious Affections Ministries. This is such a good hymnal that I’m pretty sure I could happily post every hymn it contains, but I’ll be limiting selections to hymns I have never posted here before, especially those unfamiliar to me (of which there are many). For more information and to purchase this hymnal, visit Religious Affections Ministries.

A Stay of Execution

In medieval times there was a court jester whose wont was to devise the most atrocious puns. This continued for months on end, whereupon the king lost his patience and sentenced the jester to be hanged. The poor wretch was standing on the gallows with a rope around his neck when a messenger came riding posthaste from the castle, exclaiming, “Wait! The king has decided to spare the jester”s life, provided that he never again tell another pun in public.” As you can imagine, the jester was overjoyed. Grinning from ear to ear, he said, “No noose is good news!”

By Imputation

In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell securely; And this is His name by which He will be called, “The Lord our righteousness.” —Jeremiah 18:1–6 How the Lord is to be man’s righteousness . . . And that is, in one word, by imputation. For it pleased God, after he had made all things by the word of his power, to create man after his own image. And so infinite was the condescension of the high and lofty One who inhabiteth eternity that although he might have insisted on the everlasting obedience of him and his posterity yet he was pleased to oblige himself, by a covenant or agreement made with his own creatures, upon condition of an unsinning obedience, to give them immortality and eternal life. For when it is said, ‘The day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die’ we may fairly infer, so long as he continued obedient and did not eat thereof, he should surely live. The 3rd of Genesis gives us a full but mournful account, how our first parents broke this covenant and thereby stood in need of a better righteousness than their own, in order to procure their future acceptance with God. For what must they do? They were as much under a covenant of works as ever. And though, after their disobedience, they were without strength yet they were obliged not only to do but continue to do all things and that too in the most perfect manner, which the Lord had required of them. And not only so but to make satisfaction to God’s infinitely offended justice, for the breach they had already been guilty of. Here then opens the amazing scene of divine philanthropy. I mean, God’s love to man. For behold, what man could not do, Jesus Christ, the son of his Father’s love, undertakes to do for him. And that God might be just in justifying the ungodly, though ‘he was in the form of God and therefore thought it no robbery to be equal with God, yet he took upon him the form of a servant’, even human nature. In that nature he obeyed and thereby fulfilled the whole moral law in our stead and also died a painful death upon the cross and thereby became a curse for, or instead of, those whom the Father had given to him. As God he satisfied at the same time that he obeyed and suffered as man and, being God and man in one person, he wrought out a full, perfect, and sufficient righteousness for all to whom it was to be imputed. Here then we see the meaning of the word righteousness. It implies the active as well as passive obedience of the Lord Jesus Christ. We generally, when talking of the merits of Christ, only mention the latter—his death. Whereas the former—his life and active obedience, is equally necessary. Christ is not such a Saviour as becomes us, unless we join both together. Christ not only died but lived, not only suffered but obeyed for, or instead of, poor sinners. And both these jointly make up that complete righteousness, which is to be imputed to us, as the disobedience of our first parents was made ours by imputation. In this sense and no other, are we to understand that parallel which the Apostle Paul draws, in the 5th of the Romans, between the first and second Adam. This is what he elsewhere terms, ‘our being made the righteousness of God in him.’ This is the sense wherein the Prophet would have us to understand the words of the text, therefore, Jeremiah 33:16, ‘She (i.e. the church itself) shall be called (having this righteousness imputed to her) The Lord our righteousness.’ —George Whitefield, “The Lord Our Righteousness” in Lee Gatiss (Ed.), The Sermons of George Whitefield (Crossway, 2012), 1:264–266.

Be Fruitful
Spiritual Adultery
A Lawful Marriage
Lord’s Day 48, 2018
In Preparation for the Lord’s Day: Savior of the Nations, Come
Another Bird Story
Children of Wrath?

Keeping Up Communion
By His Good Providence
The Sin of Ingratitude
Lord’s Day 46, 2018
In Preparation for the Lord’s Day: Come Down, O Love Divine
Another Dog Tale
The Duty of Praise

Profession & Practice
Generating Heat
Lord’s Day 47, 2018
In Preparation for the Lord’s Day: Come, Holy Spirit, Heavenly Dove
Holidays Are for the Birds (or vice-versa)
Thanksgiving Day, 2018


Who Is Jesus?

The Gospel
What It Means to Be a Christian

Norma Normata
What I Believe

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