Sermon #20 Series: Who Is God?
Title: The Gifts Of God
Text: 1 Timothy 6:17
Subject: The Gifts Of God Freely Bestowed Upon His Elect
Date: Tuesday Evening - June 19, 1990
It is the character of God to give. In our text Paul tells us that the living God is one “who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.” Isn’t that amazing? God alone owns everything. God alone has the absolute rights of sovereignty and ownership over all things. Yet, God who owns and controls all things, “giveth us richly all things to enjoy.” This is another aspect of God’s character that transcends reason. Truly, his thoughts arfe not our thoughts, and his ways are not our ways! We have, by sin, attempted to rob God of everything. And he stoops to give us everything!
This text is addressed to “us”, to us who believe, to us who are born of God, to us who are God’s elect. To the wicked and unbelieving, God has reserved nothing, but wrath. But to his own elect, the Lord God “giveth us richly all things to enjoy.” Tonight, I want us to meditate together on “The Gifts of God.”
It is the character of God to give. And here are nine things God has freely given to every believer. If you now trust the Lord Jesus Christ as your only, all-sufficient Savior, God has given you these nine things. Let us give thanks to God for...
I. THE GIFT OF HIS SON.
“For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given” (Isa. 9:6).
“Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift” (2 Cor. 9:15).
The supreme gift of God’s love is the gift of his own dear Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to be our Savior (1 John 4:9-10).
A. God gave his Son to be our Surety in the covenant of grace before the world began (Isa 49:8).
B. God gave his Son to be our Substitutionary Sacrifice upon the cross (John 3:16).
C. God gave his Son to be our Savior in the new birth.
When a sinner is saved by the grace of God, Christ is given to him in all the fulness of his mediatorial offices. God has given his Son to us to be...
· Our Prophet.
· Our Priest.
· Our King.
Is Christ mine? Has God given me his dear Son? If he has, then I have in Christ the guarantee of every other blessing (Rom. 8:32). Since God has not withheld from us his choicest Treasure, the Darling of his heart, his only begotten and beloved Son, surely he will also freely give us all things.
II. THE GIFT OF HIS SPIRIT.
In the days of the Old Testament, God pardoned and justified his elect upon the grounds of the atonement Christ would make at his appointed time. On the basis of that same atonement, he also gave those Old Testament saints his Holy Spirit (Neh. 9:20; Isa. 63:11). Without the gift of the Spirit, none could have been born of God, believed on him, or walked with him. But in those days, the Holy Spirit was not yet poured out upon the nations of the world in demonstration and power. The Gentiles were without the Spirit of life, light, and holiness until Christ came. But now, since the death, resurrection, and exaltation of Christ, God has poured out his Spirit upon his elect in every nation.
A. The Holy Spirit was God’s ascension gift to his Son (Acts 2:33).
B. The Holy Spirit is Christ’s coronation gift to his church (John 16:7).
C. And the Holy Spirit is a gift purchasesd by Christ for his own elect (Gal. 3:13-14).
Every blessing we receive from God comes to us through the merits and mediation of Christ.
III. THE GIFT OF LIFE.
The apostle Paul tells us that, “The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:23). Eternal life is the gift of God sovereignly and freely bestowed upon spiritually dead sinners through the merits of Christ’s blood atonement and the power of his grace (John 10:28; 17:2).
A. “The wages of sin is death.”
That means, if I die, if I am lost, if I go to hell, it is my own fault. Hell is something every person earns for himself by wilful sin and unbelief.
B. “But the gift of God is eternal life.”
That means, if I am saved, if I enter into heaven, it is God’s fault, God’s work, God’s gift. Spiritual, eternal life is something God gives to sinners.
C. And this gift is ours “through Jesus Christ his Son.”
Eternal life is given to sinners only through the mediation of Christ, the sinner’s Substitute (Psa. 68:18-20).
IV. THE GIFT OF FAITH.
Though faith in Christ is something for which every man is responsible, because God commands us to believe (1 John 3:23), and though faith is an act of the heart, faith is not the work of man’s free will. Faith is the gift of God (Acts 3:16; Eph. 1:19; 2:8; Col. 2:12; 1 Pet. 1:21).
As God must give me breath before I can breathe, so he must give me faith before I can believe. Faith is not the cause and condition of grace. Faith in Christ is the gift and fruit of grace.
V. THE GIFT OF REPENTANCE.
We recognize that it is the duty of all men to repent. Every sinner is responsible to do so. God commands all to repent (Acts 17:30). But man by nature is so thoroughly in bondage to sin that he has neither the will or the ability to repent. No one will ever repent of sin apart from a miracle of grace.
“It is the Holy Spirit who illuminates the understanding to perceive the heinousness of sin, the heart to loathe it, and the will to repudiate it” (A. W. Pink).
If you are now in a state of repentance, it is because God has poured out the Spirit of his grace upon you (Zech. 12:10; Jer. 31:19; Acts 5:31; 11:18).
VI. THE GIFT OF SPIRITUAL UNDERSTANDING.
Spiritual knowledge, discernment, and understanding is not the result of human intellect, but the gift of God (1 John 5:20).
I am not talking about mere doctrinal knowledge. Though that is an essential element of spiritual understanding. But a man may have that and be lost. Spiritual understanding is the result of spiritual life in Christ. It is the Holy Spirit shining light into our hearts enabling us to see the glory of God in the face of Christ (2 Cor. 4:6).
Though we do not see Christ with our physical eyes, he is a living reality to those who have spiritual understanding. We now know him, by the Spirit of God, through the Word of God.
A. We know his doctrine (1 John 2:20).
B. We know his will (Prov. 3:5-6; John 15:15).
C. We know his character (Isa. 45:20-25).
This spiritual understanding does not produce pride, but humility. It fires the affections, sanctifies the will, and elevates the mind.
VII. THE GIFT OF HIS GRACE (1 Cor. 1:4).
The word “grace” in this text is used in its widest sense. It includes all the benefits of Christ’s merits and mediation, providential, spiritual, temporal, and eternal. Particularly, Paul is talking about God’s saving grace bestowed upon his elect from eternity (Eph. 1:3). All grace is the gift of God!
· Regenerating grace!
· Justifying grace!
· Pardoning grace!
· Sanctifying grace!
· Persevering grace!
· Living grace!
· Dying grace!
VIII. THE GIFT OF ALL THINGS (1 Tim. 6:17; 3:4-5).
Child of God, learn this. God has given you all things to enjoy.
A. All things in providence are yours.
B. All things in grace are yours.
C. And all things in creation are yours.
1. Be careful that you do not abuse what God has given you.
2. Be certain that you are not brought into bondage to anything.
3. But be assured that all things in God’s creation were made for you to enjoy.
Illustration: This is your car. This is what I expect of you.
IX. THE GIFT OF EVERLASTING, HEAVENLY GLORY (Rom. 8:17; Eph. 1:11).
All that heaven is, all that it promises and affords, in all its fulness, glory and happiness is the gift of God, freely bestowed upon every saved sinner through the merits and mediation of Christ. It is our inheritance as the sons of God!
It is the character of God to give. The God we worship and serve with grateful hearts is “the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.”
“Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise they glorious name. But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? For all things come of thee, and of thine own have we given thee” (1 Chron. 29:13-14).
God has given all things to us. Let us now give our all to him (Rom. 12:1-2; 1 Cor. 6:19-20).