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Friday, September 23, 2011

Workin' For A Livin': Daily Bread That Is Needed Daily

"Jesus came not to give bread, but to be bread."  - John Piper

Then they said to him, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.” So they said to him, “Then what sign do you do, that we may see and believe you? What work do you perform? Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’” Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
(John 6:28-33 ESV)

The work of first and most importance in the life of the Christian is that of faith in Jesus as Lord and Savior. Then, and only then, can any other good works pleasing to God be accomplished. This work, it should be noted, is not one that we accomplish in and of ourselves as we see later in the passage; it is accomplished completely apart from us as an act of mercy by a benevolent God (John 6:44). The work that is done by human means is important (2 Thess. 3:6-15), but the true work that ultimately gives life is not accomplished by us. Our work is just as terminal and finite as we are (Genesis 3:19). But, Christ is eternal, and therefore the work that he accomplishes is eternal as well.

Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness, just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works:

“Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven,

and whose sins are covered;

blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.”

(Romans 4:4-8 ESV)
Believing in the One who God has sent is referred to as doing the work of God. As we learn in Romans 9:14-18, human will and exertion are not enough to save us from the wrath of God. The offense of sin is judged by the magnitude of the one for whom it has offended. God is eternal; so, in order to be redeemed from our fallen state, we must be saved by a state of the same measure (John 17:1-26; Galatians 6:7-10; Ephesians 2:1-10)

Soli Deo Gloria,

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