As the lungs in their functioning in-breathe and out-breathe, so we find there is a double aspect of every truth of the Gospel.
Almost every blessing which comes to us through our Lord Jesus Christ has a double meaning. There is that which God gives to us in His objective grace, and there is the result of that grace in a subjective sense operating in our hearts and lives. The field is too large to do more than hint at what we might call these double blessings of the Gospel.
The Father in His love and grace has “made us meet for the inheritance of the saints in light” (Col. 1:12); and we are responsible to see that we are vessels “meet for the Master’s use” in being sanctified and prepared unto every good work (II Tim. 2:21).
God in His grace has made us “accepted in the Beloved” (Eph. 1:6); and because of this, we are to make it our aim and ambition “to be accepted of Him,” that is, to be “well-pleasing to Him” (II Cor. 5:9, R.V.).
We are justified before God without works (Rom. 3:26, 28); but we justify our faith by our works (Jas. 2:14-26).
Christ having met every claim of God on our behalf in answering for our sin, declares that the believer has been “sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all,” and “we are perfected forever” (Heb. 10:10,14, R.V.); and because of this, we are “being sanctified by faith” as the Holy Spirit works within us (Rom. 15:16).
God has chosen us in Christ that we should “be holy and without blame before Him in love” (Eph. 1:4,5); and we are responsible to make our calling and election sure by adding to our faith the graces of virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, Godliness, brotherly-kindness, and love (II Pet. 1:5-11).
Those who are born of the Holy Spirit possess the Holy Spirit, as the seal of God marking them off as His property (Eph. 4:30); but it is not every believer who is possessed by the Spirit, hence the exhortation is to “be filled in the Spirit” (Eph. 5:18, R.V.).
Christ promises the rest of salvation to those that come to Him, and thus they find rest of conscience from their sins; but there is also a deeper rest — the rest of heart from anxiety as we take the yoke of God’s will upon us, and keep in that yoke with our Lord (Matt. 11:28,29).
Because Christ has been “made sin for us” we are “made the righteousness of God in Him” (II Cor. 5:21); but we are exhorted also as a consequence of our union with Christ to be righteous and thus evidencing our oneness with Him (I John 2:29).
The conscience is cleansed from guilt by the atoning blood of Christ, hence we are said to be “justified” (counted righteous) “by means of His blood” (Rom. 5:9); but the relative to this is, that we “cleanse ourselves of all filthiness of the flesh and of the spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of the Lord” (II Cor. 7:1).
We are redeemed to God by the blood of Christ, hence in Him “we have redemption” (Eph. 1:7); but the outcome of this means we are to be redeemed from all iniquity (Titus 2:14).
Believers in Christ have eternal life as God’s gift (Rom. 6:23); but we are to lay hold on eternal life as an experience (I Tim. 6:19).
Two-fold Work of Grace
The grace of God saves us from what we deserve as sinners; but it also teaches us that we should deny ungodliness and worldly lust, and live soberly, righteously and Godly (Titus 2:11,12).
God in His wondrous love graciously forgives us our sins (Eph. 1:7); and that is to be the incentive to forgive one another even as He has forgiven us (Eph. 4:32)
God has delivered us from the power of darkness (Col. 1:13), that we should be delivered from this present evil world (Gal. 1:4).
The above will indicate a few of the many doubles that are found in connection with God’s blessings. What God has joined together we must not put asunder. It is our privilege to recognise what is ours in Christ, but we are equally responsible to allow Christ to live in us that we may fulfil our responsibilities.
This page Copyright © 2000 Peter Wade. The Bible text in this publication, except where otherwise indicated, is from the King James Version. This article appears on the site: https://www.peterwade.com/. Check out our Bookstore.