Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/pm/pm20040421.htm
APPLYING THE CHRISTIAN'S POSITIONAL RICHES IN CHRIST
Part XVI: Applying The Truth That Believers Are A Gift From God The Father To Christ
(John 17:2, 6 (twice), 9, 11, 12, 24)
Lesson: (1) Opposite the debilitating affects of our evil world's competitive system that makes many view themselves as "losers" who are of "little or no value," a positional truth owned by every Christian the instant he or she trusts in Christ is the fact that he or she is IN GRACE so valued by the Father and by Christ that the Father shows His infinite love to His Beloved Son by making that believer a GIFT to His Son. (2) The resulting CARE of God and Christ for each believer is infinitely great and nurturing!
- In this life, we know much painful competition against others simply because someone must lose. TV reality shows display 25 bachelors vying for one woman's hand in marriage, and, in the "March madness" ritual, 64 basketball teams try to be the NCAA national champion where all but one painfully LOSE!
- This pain can tempt the "losers" to wonder if they have value to their person or existence!
- One of the 33 positional truths that the believer has the instant he trusts in Christ is the fact he is made a gift from the Father to Christ, Lewis Sperry Chafer, Systematic Theology, vol. III, "Soteriology," p. 249-250. Applying this truth solves the fallout of this life's cruel competitive orientation (as follows):
- Applying The Truth That Believers Are A Gift From God The Father To Christ, John 17:2,6 et al.
- When Jesus made His great intercession to the Father in John 17, He did so audibly so His DISCIPLES would hear what He prayed about them so they might have Christ's JOY fulfilled in them, John 17:13.
- Well, seven times in that prayer, Jesus referred to His disciples as those whom the Father had given unto Him as a GIFT, cf. John 17:2, 6 (twice), 9, 11, 12 and 24.
- Thus, CHRIST was seeking to TELL His DISCIPLES "the Father presents individual believers separately to the Son -- each representing a particular import and value not approached by another [being]. Like a chest of jewels, collected one by one and wholly diverse, these love gifts appear before the eyes of the Son of God. Should one be missing, He, the Savior, would be rendered inexpressibly poor," (brackets ours) Ibid., Chafer, p. 250!
- Hence, Jesus wanted every believer to know the instant he or she trusts in Christ, he or she is so prized by God the Father and Jesus that the Father makes him or her a special gift to the Son in accord with the Father's infinite love for Christ -- God graciously places unspeakable VALUE on every believer!
- Studying the John 17 context, we learn priceless applications for our edification as follows:
- Since the Father so values the believer that He makes him or her a gift to His Son, at the point of the believer's faith in Christ, that believer is given eternal life, John 17:2.
- Since the Father so values the believer that He makes him or her a gift to His Son, at the point of the believer's faith in Christ, the Father identifies Himself as the Owner of the believer so He can give him or her as a priceless gift to His Beloved Son, John 17:6 (twice), 9. Thus, the Father infinitely loves and stakes ownership in the believer the instant he or she trusts in the Gospel of Christ!
- Since the Father so values the believer that He makes him or her a gift to His Son, at the point of the believer's faith in Christ, God is concerned that this believer be protected enough from the world that he enjoy unity with other believers in desiring to serve and exalt Christ, John 17:11.
- Since the Father so values the believer that He makes him or her a gift to His Son, at the point of the believer's faith in Christ, the Lord preserves their souls so that none are lost, John 17:12.
- Since the Father so values the believer that He makes him or her a gift to His Son, at the point of the believer's faith in Christ, Christ wills that the believer be with Him in heaven's glory to behold Christ's glory that the Father had given Him before the world began, 17:24.
Application: (1) May we handle the "low self esteem" we have learned from our competitive world to have of ourselves by focusing on the fact that we as believers are made indescribably valuable to God by His great salvation. (2) Thus, NOT out of PRIDE as a "worldly winner," but in THANKSGIVING as a "graced believer," (a) may we REJOICE in God's infinite acceptance of us, (b) may we VALUE fellow believers in the UNITY God desires and (c) may we relax in the security of God's great nurturing of us!