November 26th, 2014

what is our sealing?

"who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee" 2 Corinth. 1:22

"What is our sealing?
Sealing we know hath this use.
1. First of all, it doth imprint a likeness of him that doth seal upon the wax that is sealed; as when the king's picture or image is stamped or sealed upon the wax, everything the wax answers to that in the seal, face to face, eye to eye, hand to hand, foot to foot, body to body. So we are said to be sealed, when we carry in our souls the image of Jesus Christ; for the Spirit sets the stamp of Jesus Christ upon every Christian, so that there is the likeness of Christ in all things; understanding answers understanding, in proportion. As a child, you know, answers the father; it hath limb for limb, foot for foot, finger for finger, but it is not in quantity, but in proportion and likeness; so it is in the soul that is sealed by the Spirit, there is a likeness to Christ, something of every grace to Christ. There is understanding of the same heavenly supernatural truths; there is a judging of things as Christ judgeth; and the affections go as Christ's do; he loves that which Christ loves, and he hates that which he hates; he joys in that which Christ delights in. Every affection of the soul is carried that way that the affections of our blessed Saviour are carried in proportion. Everything in the soul is answerable to Jesus Christ; and there is no grace in Christ, but there is like in every Christian in some small measure. The obedience of Christ to his Father even to the death, it is in every Christian. The humility whereby Christ abased himself, it is in every Christian. Christ works in the soul that receiveth him, a likeness to himself." Richard Sibbes "Commentary On 2 Corinthians Chap. 1, ver.22"
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

we shall desire to be transformed more and more to Christ

It is 10:17 AM Wednesday morning in the flow of life. It is 29 degrees outside this morning. Our street in front of our home is a layer of pure ice. In driving this morning to pick up Carol after she got out of work was dangerous. I had to drive super slow so as not to slide out of control of the car. The Lord granted us traveling mercies this morning.

I got up this morning around 5:55 AM. I got dressed immediately and went to get my blood drawn. I have a doctor's appointment next week and my doctor wanted to check out my blood. I was home from getting my blood drawn around 6:15 AM. I made myself a pot of coffee and ate slice of corn bread. Next I messed with our main computer and then made myself a pot of oatmeal.

After breakfast I wrote in my paper diary and read my newest commentary on Second Corinthians "The Second Letter To The Corinthians" [The Pillar New Testament Commentary] by Mark A. Seifrid. Carol called around 8:45 AM to tell me she was finished with her shift and ready to come home.

This morning I got out to read Volume 3 THE WORKS OF RICHARD SIBBES "An Exposition of 2nd Corinthians Chapter One". This morning I was reading Seifrid's comments on 1 Corinthians 1:21,22 "Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God; who has also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts." The 17th century English Puritans wrote a lot on the sealing work of the Holy Spirit/the doctrine of assurance of salvation. I plan to quote more of Sibbes and others on the sealing work of the Holy Spirit today.

Last night I watched television and went to bed around 11 o'clock PM. I am not sure what I will do today. It is not snowing and the main roads are clear so I could go visit thrift stores today. Or I might just stay home all day and read my books and watch the birds at our bird feeder.

Well I will close to drift. No way out.

Richard Sibbes
  • Current Music
    Andy Stott 'We Stay Together'

bear the image of the Second Adam

"And this is an undoubted character of a Christian. The soul that believes in Christ doth not only believe in him for his own sake, to be forgiven of his sins; but together with believing, feeling the forgiveness of his sins, and that Christ hath so loved him, and done such things for him, he is ambitious to express Christ in all things; and it stirs him up with desire to be like him; for, thinks he, is there such love in Christ to me? and is there such grace and mercy in God to me? and was Christ so good as to do and suffer such things for, must needs be so. These desires are undoubtedly universally in the souls of all those that partake of Christ. It is the nature of the thing to be so. We shall desire to be transformed more and more to Christ; every way to bear the image of the 'second Adam,' who is, as the apostle saith, from heaven, heavenly; and so shall we be heavenly-minded as he was heavenly-minded on earth, talking and discoursing of the kingdom of heaven, and fitting people for the kingdom of heaven, and drawing other from this world to meditate of a better estate. There is a likeness to these in the soul of every believer; and that is the reason that Christ's offices are put together in all those that he saves, that look, whosoever he is a priest to, to die for their sins-to them he is a prophet to teach them, and a king to subdue their corruptions, and change them, and alter them, and to rule them by his Spirit.

You have carnal men in presumption, which leads them to destruction; they sever things in Christ. They will take benefit by Christ, but they care not for his likeness; they will have him as priest, but they respect him not as a king. Now all that are Christ's have the stamp of the Spirit upon them. There are desires wrought in them by the Spirit of God to that purpose; and a Spirit of sanctification that makes them every way like Christ in their proportion.

And that is an evidence of the sealing of such a soul, because the soul of itself hath no such impression: for the soul of itself is a barren wilderness, a stone that is cold and incapable of impression. When, therefore, the soul can command nature, being stiff, and hard, and dead, we see an impression of a higher nature, a man may know that undoubtedly the Spirit of God hath been in his soul; for we see a loving spirit, an humble spirit, a gracious, a believing, a broken spirit, an obedient spirit to every commandment of God, the soul can yield itself wholly to the will of God in all things. Certainly, I say, the Spirit of God hath been here, for these things grow not in a natural soul. A stone, you know, is cold by nature, the sun hath shined upon this stone. Our hearts are very cold by nature; undoubtedly, when they are warmed with the love of God, that they are made pliable to duties, the Sun of righteousness, Christ, hath shined on this cold heart. God's Spirit can work on marble, can work on brass, as Jeremiah saith, Jer. vi. 28. It was the commendations of one of the fathers that he could work on brass. God can work on our souls, which are as brass, and make an impression of grace there; and therefore when a man sees an impression upon such hard metal, certainly he may know that the finger of God's Spirit hath been there. So that the work of sanctification is an undoubted seal of the Spirit of God." Richard Sibbes "Commentary On 2 Corinthians 1, ver. 22" pg. 453,454 Volume 3 THE WORKS OF RICHARD SIBBES
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

assuring the soul of its estate in grace

The day goes by quietly. It is a very cold day here in West Michigan. I have been reading this afternoon a book titled, "Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945" by Tony Judt and sitting in our living room with my eyes closed waiting out this day. Not much else going on.

I thought for fun I would quote some more of Richard Sibbes on the sealing work of the Holy Spirit.

"What is that stamp, then? to come to the matter more particularly, what is that that the Spirit seals us with, especially,-what is that work?

I answer, The Spirit works in this order, for the most part, and in some of these universally:

1. First, the Spirit doth, together with the word, which is the instrument of the Spirit, the chariot in which it is carried, convince us of the evil that is in us, and of the ill estate we are in by reason thereof. It convinceth is that we are sinners, and of the fearful estate that we are in by sin. This is the first work of the Spirit on a man in the state of nature,-it convinceth us of the ill that is in us, and of the ill due unto us, and thereupon it abaseth us. Therefore, it is called 'the Spirit of bondage,' Rom. viii.15, because it makes a man tremble and quake till he see his peace in Christ.

2. When the Spirit hath done that, then it convinceth a man by a better, by a sweeter light, discovering a remedy in Christ, who is sealed of God, to reconcile God and us. And as he enlighteneth the soul, convinceth it of the all-sufficiency that is in Christ, and the authority that he hath, being sent and sealed of God for that purpose, so he works on the affections, he inclines the heart to go to God in Christ, and to cast himself on him by faith.

Now, when the soul is thus convinced of the evil that is in us, and of the good that is in Christ, and with this convincing is inclined and moved by the Holy Spirit, as, indeed, the Holy Spirit doth all, then upon this the Spirit vouchsafeth a superadded work,-as the Spirit doth still add to his own work,-he adds a confirming work, which is here called 'sealing.' That seal is not faith, for the apostle saith, 'After you believed, ye were sealed,' Eph. 1.13. So that this sealing is not the work of faith, but it is a work of the Spirit upon faith, assuring the soul of its estate in grace. . ." pg 455 Richard Sibbes "Commentary On 2 Corinthians 1, ver. 22" Volume 3 THE WORKS OF RICHARD SIBBES

"In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise" Ephesians 1:13
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    contemplative contemplative

old diary entry December 6, 2011 "Spirit's sealing to full assurance"

Spirit's sealing to full assurance

It is NOW 12:25 PM Tuesday afternoon. I went and got cash and then went and got Mexican coffee. On the way home I stopped at a near by thrift store to look at their used books. I found these used books to ADD to my poor man's library.

"David Copperfield" a novel by Charles Dickens

"Edith Kermit Roosevelt: Portrait of a First Lady" biography by Sylvia Jukes Morris

"The First And Second Discourses" by Jean-Jacques Rousseau

""An Essay Concerning Human Understanding" by John Locke

"Titan: The Life of John D. Rockeffeller, Sr." biography by Ron Chernow (I already have this book; I bought the book to donate to our local library used book store.)

"Mainstreams of Modern Art" by John Canaday

Now I am back inside my small cozy house. Yesterday we got in the mail our Winter taxes bill from the city of Holland. If we do not pay our taxes the government can take our house by force of arms. That is life in America. We can have this house paid for, but in reality we do not own it.

Earlier when I wrote about what I read last night I forgot to mention I read online a famous exposition of the Epistle to the Ephesians by the 17th century English Puritan Paul Baynes. This famous Puritan work has been reprinted and can be purchased from Reformation Heritage Books if you have forty dollars floating free in your hermit hut. I wish I had $40.00 dollars to buy this Puritan classic. I am though thankful I can read this exposition on the apostle Paul's epistle to the Ephesians online anytime the Spirit moves me.

Yesterday Dr. Beeke mentioned Paul Baynes when discussing the sealing work of the Holy Spirit.

"In exegeting Ephesians 1:13-14, Baynes attempts to bring harmony between the Reformed and Puritan views by uniting the Spirit's roles as indweller and seal. He distinguishes being sealed by the Spirit (which all believers possess) and being made conscious of the graces of the Spirit experience). He relates the consciousness of the Spirit's sealing to full assurance of faith, picturing the Christian's growth in assurance as stages. "Childhood" lacks full assurance, "middle age" has some measure of assurance, and "old age" usually possesses much assurance (cf. Beeke, "Quest for Full Assurance", pp. 202-203." pg. 77 quoted from the article "Paul Baynes" in the book "Meet the Puritans" by Joel R. Beeke & Randall J. Pederson.

"In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise" Ephesians 1:13.

"II. As Christ was sealed and fitted for us, so we are sealed and fitted for Christ. There is a privy seal in predestination. This is known only to God himself: 'The Lord knoweth who are his,' 2 Tim. ii.19. And this knowledge of God of us is carried secret, as a river under ground, until his calling of and separating us from the rest of men, when first by his Spirit he convinceth us of what we are in ourselves, and of our cursed condition, and thereby layeth us low by sorrow and humiliation for sin as the greatest evil. And then a pardon is more to us than a crown; then we will wait for mercy and continue so, and beg for mercy, and that upon Christ's own condition, by denying and renouncing anything of our own; then Christ is Christ unto us. Indeed, after this, it pleaseth Christ by his Spirit to open 'a door of hope,' and give some hints of mercy; and to let in some beams of love, and withal to raise up the soul by a spirit of faith, to close with particular mercy opened and offered by the Spirit, whereby the soul sealeth to the truth of the promise: John iii. 33, 'He that believeth hath set to his seal that God is true.'

It is strange that God should stoop so low as to receive, as it were, confirmation by our belief, but thus God condescends in the phrase of Scripture, as we are said to help God: 'Curse ye Meroz, because they came not to help the Lord,' &c., Judges v. 23. God stoops to be helped by us, and to have his truth, and power, and goodness ratified and confirmed by us. When we believe the promise of God in Christ-though it be by the help of the Spirit-we seal God's truth. And then God honoureth that sealing of ours by the sealing of his Spirit: 'After you believed you were sealed,' saith the apostle, Eph. i. 13; that is, the gracious love of Christ was further confirmed to them. . ." Richard Sibbes pg. 433,434 "The Fountain Sealed" volume 5 "The Works of Richard Sibbes"

It is 1:30 PM I need to close to eat lunch.
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    contemplative contemplative