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God’s mission in creation and redemption is to bring men and women into the fellowship that Father, Son, and Spirit have always shared.
Sitting in a cute (technical term for “slightly odd”) Welsh pub with fellow Master’s students on an intensive lectures’ week at Union School of Theology, I was delighted when the owner came over and lit the fire. I love a nice fire, and find nothing more satisfying than keeping it ablaze. Having taken ownership of keeping said fire alight, you can imagine how embarrassed I was, when all I seemed able to do was put it out!
It is necessary not only to pray, but also to pray “as we ought” and to pray for what we ought. Our attempt to understand what we should pray for is deficient unless we also bring to our quest the “as we ought.” Likewise, what use to us is the “as we ought” if we do not know for what we should pray?
Without understanding justification, we would assume God was all sternness, one who simply approves those who have already sorted themselves out. Such a God might be right to be like that, but he would hardly win our hearts.
Yes, the Father has eternally loved his only begotten Son. But what makes the gospel such good news for us is that the Father has graced us with every spiritual blessing—chief of which is our adoption as sons to himself—“in the Beloved” (1:7). The gospel transforms obedience.
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