God elects us in order to eliminate all boasting, all self-reliance, all human pride (1 Cor. 1:29-31; Eph. 1:3-11; 2:8-9).
Is there anything in ourselves that can merit salvation? Are some saved because they are better able to muster up belief in contrast to others who do not have the same inherent ability? If belief has its ultimate source in humans, people can boast about themselves before God because they are the ones who by their own goodness and power made the initial difference between whether or not they were saved. Such people would not suffer judgment like others because they would be inherently “better” than unbelievers.
We sometimes think we have grabbed hold of God and found Him, but it is really the other way around.
First, the seventh-day commemoration in Gen. 2:3 and Israel’s Sabbath ordinance is transferred to the first day of the week because of Christ’s resurrection. Second, Israel’s way of observing the Sabbath, with all its detailed requirements, falls away, and there is a return to the creational mandate. The observance of this mandate is a day of commemoration of God’s creative rest, a celebration that Christ has entered that rest, that believers have begun to enter such rest, and a pointing forward to believers completely entering that rest. Third, Christ’s coming fulfills Israel’s unique Sabbath commandment, since He is Israel’s Messiah, accomplishing Israel’s end-time exodus and representing true Israel and the end-time temple.
Christ was wrongly accused and executed by Satan’s earthly pawns. But His resurrection vindicated Him in the law courts of heaven and enabled Him to take away the devil’s right and power as heavenly prosecutor.
[Christ’s death] is not a redemption of all people without exception, but of all without distinction.
The church’s spiritual malaise cannot be cured by resort to the resources of idolatrous society on which…Christians have been too dependent, or to their own resources. Their illness can be remedied only by a renewed relationship with Christ.
Self-sufficiency causes spiritual insensitivity.