Donald Macleod gives a marvellously clear and tremendously encouraging summary of God’s power in redemption.*
He distinguishes it from providence with which it is closely intertwined simply to make clear what it is. He sees it manifested in 3 ways:
- Christ’s virginal conception.
- Christ’s resurrection (which he points out is ascribed in various Scriptures to each member of the Trinity in turn).
- The application of redemption to believers.
This application to believers he develops in 4 ways:
- It is definite and irreversible, yet involves a progressive sanctification.
- It operates through the Word of God, which is ineffective by itself unless accompanied by the power of God.
- It is demonstrated in preserving power that does not rob us of our responsibility while being specially available in times of great need.
- It will culminate in the resurrection of believers.
I found his concluding remarks on its demonstration in times of need particularly clear and encouraging:
“There is nothing greater in the life of the church than to see men and women, temperamentally and constitutionally weak and fragile, enabled to endure what would make strong men quake: able to be patient in affliction, content whatever their circumstances, and making melody in their hearts always and in all things (Ephesians 5:20). That is the acme of Christian achievement and one of the most moving accomplishments of omnipotence.” (pp. 57-58)
I am sure we can all think of men and women who displayed this divine demonstration of preserving power, and who, like Macleod, gave all the credit to Him whose power enabled them to display His glory in their lives. The daily challenge is to be one of their number.
* Donald Macleod, Behold Your God, Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian Focus Publications, 1990, pp. 53-58