by John Barnett

Saved By God Forever
John Barnett
James 1:18

James was a master of word pictures. In his pastoral letter to his beloved sheep he paints a picture of God's love and our responses. He describes the morbid darkness of death that oozes from the unbridled lusts of fallen human flesh. Then from that utter blackness he sweeps our gaze upwards and contrasts that old life dominated by lust with our new life coming down in perfection from the Father of the universe, unwavering and un-eclipsed He shines with the Light of Life into our hearts. In essence James tells us listen to the darkness within and you will reap a harvest of sin and death. But open your heart to the Father of lights and He will implant His unending truth and life within your soul.

God has always told man a new heart is needed to get to heaven. The Lord rejects our first birth because nothing natural can go to heaven, only the supernatural can. All of Adam's children must have a second birth to fit them for heaven. The Lord consistently used the denial of the firstborn situations to show this: Cain (1st born) rejected for Abel (2nd born), or Ishmael (1st born) rejected for Isaac (2nd born), or Esau (1st born) rejected for Jacob (2nd born) or how about Reuben (1st born) rejected for Judah (2nd born).

Now with that overview let's dive into v. 18 this morning. Would you follow along as I read it? James 1:18 Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.

We can see four major aspects of our salvation in this verse:
1. THE DIVINE PERSPECTIVE OF SALVATION: "Of His own will " it is God's work in us by His gracious initiative! Eden, Noah, Abraham, John 6
2. THE DIVINE PLAN OF SALVATION: "He brought us forth" new heart & spirit, leads triumph, opened eyes, titus 3:5
3. THE DIVINE PROCESS OF SALVATION: "by the word of truth"
4. THE DIVINE PURPOSE OF SALVATION: "that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures"

First w ...

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