The Inexpressible Comfort of the Throne of Grace

‘Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need!’ (Hebrews 4:16)

“Oh the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of the throne of grace! It is the only verdant, refreshing spot, in this earth’s wide wilderness.

To have the sensible presence of God, the heart of a loving Father to confide in, who is able to do all and more than we require; to have Him always near, His hand ever stretched out to us–oh, the comfort!

This is my sweetest spot and chief comfort in this polluted world, where I carry all my cares and troubles, and am ever sure to receive a welcome in the face of a reconciled Father.

Oh, the loving heart of Christ! Although He knows our ten thousand infirmities, He does not turn a deaf ear to our poor supplications–but with His own blood, blots out all their imperfections!”

– Mary Winslow

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We Are More Loved And Accepted In Jesus Christ Than We Ever Dared Hope

“The reason that marriage is so painful and yet so wonderful is because it is a reflection of the gospel, which is painful and wonderful at once. The gospel is this: We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believed, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope. This is the only kind of relationship that will really transform us. Love without truth is sentimentality; it supports and affirms us but keeps us in denial about our flaws. Truth without love is harshness; it gives us information but in such a way that we cannot really hear it. God’s saving love in Christ, however, is marked by both radical truthfulness about who we are and yet also radical, unconditional commitment to us. The merciful commitment strengthens us to see the truth about ourselves and repent. The conviction and repentance moves us to cling to and rest in God’s mercy and grace.”

– Timothy Keller, The Meaning of Marriage, p.48

There Is But One, Living, and True God

“There is but one only, living, and true God, who is infinite in being and perfection, a most pure spirit, invisible, without body, parts, or passions; immutable, immense, eternal, incomprehensible, almighty, most wise, most holy, most free, most absolute; working all things according to the counsel of His own immutable and most righteous will, for His own glory; most loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering, abundant in goodness and truth, forgiving iniquity, transgression, and sin; the rewarder of them that diligently seek Him; and withal, most just, and terrible in His judgments, hating all sin, and who will by no means clear the guilty.”

(Deut. 6:4; I Cor. 8:4, 6; I Thess. 1:9; Jer. 10:10; Job 11:7, 8, 9; Job 26:14; John 4:24; I Tim. 1:17; Deut. 4:15, 16; John 4:2 Luke 24:39; Acts 14:11, 15; James 1:17; Mal. 3:6; I Kings 8:27; Jer. 23:23, 24; Ps. 90:2; I Tim. 1:17; Ps. 145:3; Gen. 17:1; Rev. 4:8; Rom. 16:27; Isa. 6:3; Rev. 4:8; Ps. 115:3; Exod. 3:14; Eph. 1:11; Prov. 16:4; Rom. 11:36; I John 4:8, 16; Exod. 34:6, 7; Heb. 11:6; Neh. 9:32, 33; Ps. 5:5, 6; Nah. 1:2, 3; Exod. 34:7.)

– The Westminster Assembly, Westminster Confession of Faith, p.24-26

Comfort in the Immutability of God

“Herein is solid comfort. Human nature cannot be relied upon; but God can! However unstable I may be, however fickle my friends may prove, God changes not. If He varied as we do; if He willed one thing today and another tomorrow; if He were controlled by caprice, who could confide in Him? But, all praise to His glorious name, He is ever the same. His purpose is fixed; His will is stable; His word is sure. Here then is a Rock on which we may fix our feet, while the mighty torrent is sweeping away everything around us. The permanence of God’s character guarantees the fulfillment of His promises: ‘For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but My kindness shall not depart from you, neither shall the covenant of My peace be removed, says the Lord who has mercy on you’ (Isa. 54:10).”

– Arthur W. Pink, The Attributes of God, p.31

His Infinite Fullness Fits Him For Us

“One great part of the work of the Holy Spirit in the heart is to . . .
empty us,
strip us of self,
lead us to feel our own weakness, and
bring us as poor sinners to look to Jesus alone, as our wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption.
And just in proportion as we feel our need of Christ, and realize our absolute nothingness without Christ–shall we prize Him, enjoy Him, and exercise dependence upon Him.

O how little do many of us know our need of Christ, and therefore it is that we . . .
make so little use of Christ,
receive so little from Christ,
and do so little for Christ!

We come to Him at first–as poor, lost, helpless sinners–that we may be saved by His merit and mercy. And as believers, we must continually come to Him…
with all our burdens–that He may bear them;
with all our cares–that He may manage them;
with all our sorrows–that He may sanctify them;
with all our foes–that He may conquer them;
with all our sins–that He may cleanse them; and
with all our needs–that He may supply them.

All that we need is in Christ–and it is in Christ, for us. Our sense of our need of Christ, if it is deep and increasing–will lead us to daily come to Christ for all our supplies.

Our deep necessity fits us for Christ–and His infinite fullness fits Him for us!

Our trials, troubles, temptations, disappointments, and vexations are to teach us our need of Christ; and drive us continually to Him.

There is often much prayer–and yet little communion with Christ. We should realize that He is giving us His whole attention. He expects us to tell Him . . .
all that troubles us,
all that grieves us,
all that pleases us,
all that we need,
and all that we desire.
We should keep back nothing from Him–but speak to Him freely on every subject, and every circumstance. He is always with us, listening to us, and sympathetically entering into all our concerns!

We must be intimate with Christ.
We must walk with Him.
We must carry everything to Him.
We must seek all we need from Him.
We must be constantly . . .
going to Christ,
conversing with Christ,
and obtaining from Christ–
if we would receive the consoling influences of His love!

– James Smith, Abide with Me

God is Solitary in His Excellency

“…so few today are accustomed to meditate upon the personal perfections of God. Comparatively few of those who occasionally read the Bible are aware of the awe-inspiring and worship-provoking grandeur of the divine character. That God is great in wisdom, wondrous in power, yet full of mercy, is assumed by many to be almost common knowledge; but, to entertain anything approaching an adequate conception of His being, His nature, and His attributes, as these are revealed in Holy Scripture, is something which very, very few people in these degenerate times have attained unto. God is solitary in His excellency. ‘Who is like unto You, O Lord, among the gods? who is like You, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?’ (Exodus 15:11).”

– Arthur W. Pink, The Attributes of God, p.3

Consider Sin in Relation to the Gospel

“Bring your lust to the gospel. Not for relief, but for further conviction of your guilt. Look on Him whom you have pierced, and let it trouble you. Say to your soul, ‘What have I done? What love, what mercy, what blood, what grace have I despised and trampled on! Is this how I pay back the Father for His love? Is this how I thank the Son for His blood? Is this how I respond to the Holy Spirit for His grace? Have I defiled the heart that Christ died to wash, and the Holy Spirit has chosen to dwell in? How can I keep myself out of the dust? What can I say to the dear Lord Jesus? How shall I hold up my head with any boldness before Him? Do I count fellowship with Him of so little value that, for this vile lust’s sake, I have hard;y left Him any room in my heart? How shall I escape if I neglect so great a salvation?

‘What shall I say to the Lord? His love, mercy, grace, goodness, peace, joy, consolation – I have despised all of them! I have considered them as nothing, that I might habour lust in my heart. Have I seen God as my Father, that I might provoke Him to His face? Was my soul washed that there might be room for new defilements? Shall I seek to disappoint the purpose of the death of Christ? Shall I grieve the Holy Spirit, Who has sealed me unto the day of redemption?’ Allow your conscience to consider these things every day. See if you conscience can resist the way in which these considerations aggravate guilt. If this does not cause your conscience to sink and melt, I fear that your case is very dangerous.”

– John Owen, The Mortification of Sin, p.78-79