“Know your Christian Duties and Fulfill Them” – S.Ferguson

In Christ Alone - SFergusonThis post follows up on the previous quotation from Sinclair Ferguson’s edifying book In Christ Alonewhich I continue to work through, reading mainly on Sundays.

Tonight’s quotation is also taken from chapter 34, “Where God Looks First”, and here Ferguson shows that the Christian life of sanctification (holiness, personal consecration to God) is one of fulfilling our duties in obedience to God – glad, grateful grace-founded obedience.

Listen to what he has to say, and be encouraged as you start the new work-week tomorrow. May I say, especially you Christian wives and mothers (keep reading).

Second, the past masters of the Christian life stressed that it is not lived on the basis of our feelings but in fulfilling duties. Sanctification is not a mood condition, but the submission of our wills to the will of God.

In recent decades, evangelicalism has become so sensitive to the heresy of ‘Boy Scout Christianity’ (‘I promise to do my best, to do my duty…”) that it has truncated the Christian gospel to a half-Christ (Savior, but not Lord) and a half-salvation (blessings, but not duties). How foolish we have been, when so much of the New Testament catalogs the specific duties that arise out of our relationship to Jesus Christ and therefore are in fact among our blessings.

…Are we frightened that fulfilling our duties will overturn the grace of God? Look at the busy housewife whose entire life is governed by her multifaceted responsibilities. While her husband enters his own world (often exciting and challenging), she makes the lunches, drives the children to school, shops, cleans, washes, irons, mends, prepares the meals, cleans up, and gets the children to bed. Why? Duty. These are the duties of love, devotion, and commitment.

Love for God and duty are two parts of the same thing. How foolish we have been to separate them and to regard duty as a bad word. It nourishes Christlikeness (John 4:34). Therefore, know your Christian duties and fulfill them (Kindle ed.).

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