2021 Advent Reading – Hope for the World: Advent with John Wesley

Day 12 Thursday 16 December 2021

On Working Out our own Salvation –  Part 3 (Philippians 2:12-13)

Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed – not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence – continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfil his good purpose.

Reflection

Q:  How are we to work out this salvation?

A: The Apostle answers, “With fear and trembling.” In singleness of heart; with a single eye to the will and providence of God; “not with eye-service, as men-pleasers; but as servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart;” doing whatever they do as the will of God, and, therefore, with their might. (Eph. 6:5.)  The Apostle clearly imply two things: First, that everything be done with the utmost earnestness of spirit, and with all care and caution. Secondly, that it be done with the utmost diligence, speed, punctuality, and exactness.

Q: What are the practical ways for us to work out this salvation?

A:

  • The Prophet Isaiah gives us a general answer, touching the first steps which we are to take: “Cease to do evil; learn to do well.” By the grace already given, fly from all sin as from the face of a serpent; carefully avoid every evil word and work; yea, abstain from all appearance of evil.
  • And “learn to do well:” Be zealous of good works, of works of piety, as well as works of mercy; family prayer, and crying to God in secret. Fast in secret, and “your Father which sees in secret, he will reward you openly.”
  • “Read the Scriptures:” Hear them in public, read them in private, and meditate therein.
  • At every opportunity, be a partaker of the Lord’s Supper. “Do this in remembrance of him: and he will meet you at his own table.
  • As you have time, do good unto all men; to their souls and to their bodies. And herein “be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.” It then only remains that ye deny yourselves and take up your cross daily.
  • Deny yourselves every pleasure which does not prepare you for taking pleasure in God, and willingly embrace every means of drawing near to God, though it be a cross, though it be grievous to flesh and blood.

Prayer

Dear Heavenly father, during this season of advent, help me to reach out to my friends and families who are in need. Help me to have the strength to see to it that I am there to support them in all the ways I can. Help me to be zealous of good works, of works of piety, as well as works of mercy. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

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