Robert McLaughlin Bible Ministries

Understanding the place of grace and mercy in the divine decrees.

Sunday, January 13, 2002

The Doctrine of Divine Decrees.
Point 1. Definition

The decrees of God are His eternal and immutable will regarding the future existence of all events which will happen in time and the precise manner and order of their occurrence.

ROM 9:20 On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, “Why did you make me like this,” will it?

Point 2. There are five characteristics of the divine decrees.

(a) All-comprehensive.
(b) Eternal.
(c) Perfect.
(d) Unchangeable and certain.
(e) The free choice of God in eternity past.

Point 3. The logical order of the divine decrees - lapsarianism.

a. Create all mankind
b. Permit the fall
c. Provide salvation
d. Leave the reprobate to their just condemnation.
e. Elect and predestinate believers only.

The plan of God = God gathering into one all-inclusive plan all the objects of salvation, in heaven or on earth, in Christ, EPH 1:10.

The mysterious purpose or plan which had been hidden for ages in God, now made known to His saints, EPH 3:4-11.

If we are ignorant of the great end aimed at in the scheme of redemption or if we misconceive that end and that relation, all of our views will be confused and erroneous.

If the end of redemption, creation, and providence is the production of the greatest amount of happiness, then Christianity is one thing. If the end be the glory of God, then Christianity is another thing.

The decrees of God are His eternal purpose according to the counsels of His own will whereby for His own glory He has foreordained whatever comes to pass.

This complete indictment = He has placed all of us under total depravity and condemnation so He may extend His mercy to all.

One of the principles missing when the divine decrees are being taught by theologians is that the mercy of God is ignored.

EXO 33:18 “I pray Thee, show me Your glory!”

EXO 33:19 I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of Jehovah before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.

Grace comes from God in the form of gifts, but it returns to God in the form of glory.

Mercy is a byproduct of the essence of God in action toward the human race in history.

There is a direct relationship between the mercy of God and the glory of God, and between the grace of God and glory of God.

If the purpose of God redeeming man is the production of the greatest amount of happiness, then Christianity is one thing; if the end be the glory of God, then Christianity is another thing.

ROM 8:31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?

Grace comes from God in the form of gifts, but it returns to God in the form of glory.

1CO 6:20 For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.

God’s plan throughout all the ages is that He might be glorified by the grace that He dispenses to undeserving creatures.

COL 2:6 As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him,

Condemnation must precede salvation.

COL 2:6 As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him,

Grace comes from God in the form of gifts, but it returns to God in the form of glory from the winner believer only, living in God’s plan performing divine good, EPH 2:10.

EPH 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

We still need the manifestation of the grace of God, and when we are recipients of the grace of God, we are objects of His mercy; mercy is grace in action.

1CO 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.

2CO 4:1 Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we received mercy, we do not get discouraged.

Occupation with Jesus Christ is the greatest provision of the mercy of God in our post-salvation lives.

A doxology is an expression of praise to God, especially a short hymn sung as a part of Christian worship.
doxa = glory; glory through words.

unfathomable = incapable of explanation in terms of human viewpoint.

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