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With New Testament Eyes: 83 - Salvation is of the Lord

By Henry Mahan


      Jonah 2:1-10

      I do not know how much importance can be attached to this nor whether it is of any importance at all, but the word of the Lord came to Jonah saying, 'Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it' (Jonah 1:2). Then after he fled from the presence of the Lord, sailed to Tarshish, was swallowed by the fish, and uttered these immortal words, 'Salvation is of the Lord,' Jonah was told by the Lord, 'Arise, go to Nineveh and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee' (Jonah 3:1-2). Crying against a city because of their wickedness does not require much knowledge, understanding, nor compassion. But preaching the Lord's message of grace and salvation involves an understanding by experience and faith in that gospel and the glory of God. This Jonah received in the darkness and hopelessness of the fish's belly.

      Moses declared unto the children of Israel, as they stood before the Red Sea with the thundering hosts of Egyptians descending upon them, 'Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord' (Exo. 14:13). David wrote more than once in the Psalms, 'Salvation belongeth to the Lord' (Psalm 3:8; 37:39; 62:1).

      Jahaziel told Israel, 'The battle is not yours, but God's. Stand ye still and see the salvation of the Lord' (2 Chron. 20:17). Simeon prayed to die for 'Mine eyes have seen thy salvation' (Luke 2- 30). A man can only preach what he has experienced, and Jonah learned that 'Salvation is of the Lord.'

      1. What do we mean by these words, 'salvation is of the Lord'?

      Someone wrote years ago, 'The royal bath of mercy, wherein black souls are washed white as the snow, was filled from the veins of our Lord Jesus Christ. No blood of martyrs mingled with that stream. No blood of noble confessors and heroes of the cross entered into that river of atonement. The atonement is the unaided work of the Lord of glory.' The banquet of mercy is served by one host, the Lord Jesus Christ, who prepared the feast, invited the guests, made them willing to come, and gave to them their robes of spotless righteousness. A preacher of the last century declared, 'My gospel is simply this: the whole of the work whereby a guilty, fallen son of Adam is lifted from the dunghill, washed, justified, and translated into the kingdom of God and made like his beloved Son is of the Lord from the beginning to its glorious consummation' (Eph. 2:8-10).

      2. Salvation is of the Lord in its origination

      Our Lord planned and purposed the redemption of his people from the beginning (Eph. 1:3,4; 2 Thess. 2:13). Our Lord Jesus was 'the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world' (Rev. 13:8). Salvation is too splendid and too wise to have been the product of any mind except that mind which could accomplish it.

      Suppose that God had called a council of angels and declared, 'Man that I shall create will rebel against me. I shall punish all sin; my justice and my law demand that I should do so. But I intend to show mercy, for God is love! Tell me, how can my law be honored and the demands of my justice be fulfilled that mercy may reign? Where shall mercy and truth meet together? righteousness and peace kiss each other? (Psalm 85:10). How can God be just and the justifier of sinners who believe?' Those angels would still be sitting there in silence. Only God can plan and accomplish salvation (Isa. 46:9- 11).

      3. Salvation is of the Lord in its execution

      The Father made the beloved and only begotten Son our surety, our representative, and the federal head of an elect people, chosen in him and given to him to redeem and bring to glory (John 6:37-45; 10:14-16; 10:24-31). In Adam we died; in Christ we live (Rom. 5:12; 1 Cor. 15:22). In Adam we were made sinners; in Christ we are made righteous (Rom.5:19). In Adam we were separated from God; in Christ we are brought to God (1 Pet. 3:18).

      The Father is the first cause of all that took place in the work of our Redeemer. 'He (the Father) hath made him (the Son) to be sin for us (the sinner), who knew no sin (Christ was perfect) that we might be made the righteousness of God in Christ' (2 Cor. 5:21). 'It pleased the Lord to bruise him (Isa. 53:10). Even those who planned his death, betrayed him, tried him, scourged him, nailed him to the cross, and put him in the tomb did what God determined before to be done (Acts 2:22-23; 4:27-28).

      Christ died not as a reformer, nor an example, nor to gain the pity of men. He died as the substitute, sin offering, and sacrifice for his people. As the blood atonement on the mercy-seat of old was offered 'before the Lord,' Christ Jesus, by one offering before the Lord, perfected forever them that are sanctified (Heb. 10: 9-17). The Father ordained and pictured for us in the Old Testament all that our Lord would do for our redemption, and he died 'according to the scriptures' (1 Cor. 15:1-3).

      4. Salvation is of the Lord in its application

      'No,' says the free-willer; 'God has done all that he can do. He has given his Son; he has provided salvation; now it is up to us to want it, seek it, and accept it.' Can the dead sinner give himself life? Can the lost sheep find itself? Can the unregenerate begat themselves? 'Can the Ethiopian change his skin?' (Jer. 13:23).

      No, my friends! his people are made willing in the day of his power. 'Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth' (James 1:18). We receive Christ and believe on his name because we are 'born of God' (John 1:12-13). Paul summed up his call in these words found in Gal. 1:15, 'But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace, to reveal his Son in me.'

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See Also:
   Foreward & Acknowledgements
   1 - The Fall
   2 - Abel's Offering
   3 - The Ark Of Noah
   4 - Sarah and Hagar; Law and Grace
   5 - The Lord Will Provide
   6 - A Bride for the Heir
   7 - Bethel - The House of God
   8 - Peniel - The Face of God
   9 - Joseph Opens the Storehouses
   10 - Joseph and His Brothers
   11 - Shiloh
   12 - The Passover
   13 - The Manna
   14 - Water from the rock
   15 - The Blood Before the Lord
   16 - The Ram of Consecration
   17 - The Day of Atonement
   18 - Caleb - The Faithful Dog
   19 - The High Priest Intercedes
   20 - The Brazen Serpent
   21 - A Prophet Like Moses
   22 - The Cities of Refuge
   23 - Joshua
   24 - The Scarlet Line in the Window
   25 - The birth of Samson
   26 - The Kinsman Redeemer
   27 - The Song of Hannah
   28 - Give us a King
   29 - Saul's Great Sin
   30 - David and Mephibosheth
   31 - Why God Permitted David to Fall
   32 - Comfort from God's Covenant
   33 - I Will Not Offer to God that which Cost me Nothing
   34 - The Queen of Sheba Comes to Solomon
   35 - Three Examples of Faith
   36 - Where is the Lord God of Elijah?
   37 - Empty Vessels Filled
   38 - Naaman, the Leper
   39 - Open his Eyes that He may See
   40 - Four Lepers Teach us a Lesson
   41 - Nehushtan--A Piece of Brass
   42 - Bringing Back the Ark
   43 - Uzziah's Great Transgression
   44 - Four Things Learned in Trouble
   45 - How Can Man be Just With God?
   46 - Three Vital Questions
   47 - I Know that my Redeemer Liveth
   48 - Now Mine Eye Seeth Thee
   49 - The Psalm of Messiah the King
   50 - God's two great books
   51 - The Psalm of the Cross
   52 - The Lord is my Shepherd
   53 - True God - True Israel - True Redeemer
   54 - Eight Great Precepts
   55 - My Hope is in Thee
   56 - Many, O Lord, Are Thy Wonderful Works
   57 - A Song of Love
   58 - The Sinner's Prayer
   59 - My Rock and my Salvation
   60 - Our Lord's Sufferings for Our Sins
   61 - Mercy and Truth are Met Together
   62 - The Victory of the Messiah
   63 - Bless the Lord, O my Soul
   64 - Let the Redeemed of the Lord Say So
   65 - The King-Priest
   66 - The Chief Cornerstone
   67 - The Observer and the Observed
   68 - Praise the Lord O my Soul
   69 - Wisdom in Christ
   70 - The Conclusion of the Whole Matter
   71 - Remember Now Thy Creator
   72 - My Beloved is Mine and I am His
   73 - What is Thy Beloved more than Another Beloved?
   74 - The Lord Our Righteousness
   75 - The Believers Hope
   76 - From Nothing to Everything
   77 - Lost, Driven Away, Broken, Sick
   78 - Can These Bones Live?
   79 - Four Things God Taught Nebuchadnezzar
   80 - Thy God Will Deliver Thee
   81 - Hosea--Type of Christ
   82 - A Famine to be Feared
   83 - Salvation is of the Lord
   84 - A Fountain Opened for Mourners
   85 - The Messenger of the Covenant

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