The Effects of Grace


Grace does not merely aid righteous conduct; it also aids in the apprehension of the never-diminishing and nondeterred love of God that makes human righteousness possible. If obedience were merely a defensive posture that [Christians] assume to avert divine wrath or to curry divine favor, then human holiness would be but a euphemism for selfishness. When self-protection and self-promotion become the primary motivations of Christian obedience or preaching, then we have inadvertently made self-satisfaction the Lord of our faith.

Brian Chapell, Christ-centered Preaching, p. 314.

How Does the Lord Jesus Work?


How does the Lord Jesus work? He works by His truth. He works by his love. He works by His Holy Spirit. Now, how can a truth operate within an individual if the truth is not believed? Unbelief blocks the advance of the power of God in a person. The same is true of His love. How can His love bless and cherish if it’s not trusted? You may have someone who loves you profoundly and who does everything for you. But if you look with suspicion at every act he does, that love can never really become operative for you. Suspicion of love is the end of loves working.

Donald Grey Barnhouse, Mark: The Servant Gospel (Wheaton: Victor Books, 1988), 60.

Do You Think God Is an Angry Being?


Beware of the common idea that God the Father is only an angry Being, whom sinful man can only regard with fear, and from whom he must flee to Christ for safety. Cast it aside as a baseless and unscriptural notion. Contend earnestly for all the attributes of God, — for His holiness and His justice, as well as for His love. But never allow for one moment that there is any want of love towards sinners in any Person in the Blessed Trinity. Oh! no! Such as the Father is, such is the Son, and such is the Holy Ghost. The Father loves, and the Son loves, and the Holy Ghost loves. The cross is the effect of the Father’s love, and not the cause. Redemption is the result of the compassion of all three Persons in the Trinity. To place the Father and the Son in opposition one to another, is weak and crude theology. Christ died, not because God the Father hated, but because He loved the world.

J. C. Ryle, Do You Believe?