In times of great apostasy our God always keeps His covenant children safe. Those who are not His covenant children will reveal their unbelief. They will show that they are not His Covenant children.
In the days of wicked king Ahab, there was Naboth who fought the wickedness of Ahab and revealed himself to be a child of God. Ahab, being carnally-minded, wanted earthly pleasures that were possible only by walking in sin. God had divided the land of Canaan into twelve parts, one for each of the twelve tribes of Israel. Each family of a tribe had to retain it for those of that same tribe. But Ahab wanted a piece of land that belonged to Naboth, and which Naboth might not sell.
Indeed, Ahab was willing to buy it and give Naboth what it was worth. But Naboth was concerned with what God demanded, not with what would help his flesh. He sought to be faithful before an unfaithful king.
The result was that Naboth was killed by Ahab's men through the deviltry of Ahab's godless wife. Naboth had said to Ahab, "The Lord forbid it me, that I should give the inheritance of my fathers unto thee" (I Kings 21:3 ). He knew that God forbade it. And he was going to please God, not king Ahab.
Yes, Naboth lost his earthly life, and Ahab got what his flesh wanted. But Naboth, with his soul, entered into the glory of heaven; and Ahab continues on his way to the torment of hell. It is either/or, you know. There is nothing in between these two places.
By all means do not do what God forbids. Do what He calls you to do. Covenant faithfulness will be followed by covenant blessedness. Christ was nailed to His cross because He was hated for walking in God's way. But He opened the way for us to the kingdom of heaven. And we should constantly have before our minds our calling to serve God, not man, to walk in His way, and not in the way of our sinful flesh.
Read: Luke 12:22-34 .
It is well, therefore, that we never forget the proper place of the law in Reformed preaching. I always must serve only as a rule for a life of thankfulness to God for the great salvation which He has sovereignly wrought in Christ Jesus, and equally sovereignly bestowed upon His people. The effect of the preaching of the law may never be that the people of God attempt to add to the righteousness which they have in Christ, and that they begin to imagine that their own good works have anything to do with their salvation, except as a fruit of thankfulness wrought by the grace of God in their hearts. The righteousness of Christ is perfect. No one can ever add to it. Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and ye shall be saved. Such is the truth. No preaching of the law can or ever may detract from that truth. ...The fruit of such preaching is rather, in the first place, a deepening of the knowledge of sin and a more earnest appreciation by faith of the blood of Jesus Christ our Lord, in Whom we have reconciliation and the forgiveness of sin and perfect righteousness. ...Secondly, the proper preaching of the law has through the grace of God a sanctifying influence upon the Christian. ~ Herman Hoeksema
- Date: 2-September