by W.B. Screws

The Pilgrim's Messenger

"Have a pattern of sound words which you hear from me, in faith and love
which are in Christ Jesus."--11 Timothy 1:13
Published Monthly By W. B. SCREWS, Glennville, Georgia
Twenty-five Cents a Year

Volume XXVI

July, 1947

Number 12

Entered at the postoffice at Glennville, Ga., as second-class matter.

A talk made at the Tattnall Square Baptist Church, Macon, Georgia, Sunday, March 30, 1947.

By W. B. Screws

The Sunday School Lesson for today has to do with the death of Christ.  I shall not follow the outline given in the quarterly, but will speak on the same subject, nevertheless.  The crucifixion, when viewed from the standpoint of man's intention, was murder.  But when looked at as God intended it, it becomes His great Sacrifice.  No other event in all the history of mankind is so important.  As we shall se, the result is glorious, beyond the ability of any man to express or even comprehend.  

God does not undertake to merely deal with the millions of acts that are sinful.  His purpose goes far deeper, and attacks the DISEASE that has taken hold on all mankind, and causes sinful acts.  The disease is called sin.  And sin is lawlessness.  Isaiah, looking forward to the crucifixion, says, "The Lord has laid on Him the lawlessness of us all."  What does He do with this that is laid on Him?  John, he who was the forerunner of the Christ, says, "Lo!  The Lamb of God, which is taking away the sin of the world," John 1:29.  Here sin, the disease, is under consideration.  God's method is different from man's.  Men are always trying to get folks to stop committing sin. If we could get them to cease from sinning today, they would sin again tomorrow.  But when the disease is cured there will be more acts of sin.  Thus God, like a competent physician, is working on the cause - not the symptoms.  What does the Christ do with that which is laid on Him?  He takes it away.  He is taking away the sin of the world. 

Isaiah foresaw this.  He declared that the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand.  This is in chapter 53.  Yes, god made the sacrifice.  He did it because a sinless creation will be according to His pleasure.  He shall not be disappointed.  What the Father designs, the Son shall do.  Everything that God purposes shall be accomplished by the sacrifice, WILL be accomplishes.  

Christ, Himself, gives us a pre-view of His accomplishments: "For thus God loves the world, so that He gives His only begotten Son, that everyone who is believing in Him should not be perishing, but may be having life eonian.  for God does not dispatch His Son into the world, but that the world may be saved through Him," John 3:16,17.  The crucified Christ is the most powerful Magnet that has ever been known.  As He neared the cross, He promised that He will be drawing all to Himself, John 12:32.  

Paul had an insight into the accomplishments of the Christ, as well as into the disease that affects us all.  He said, "Consequently, then, as it was through one offense for all mankind for condemnation, thus, also, it is through one just award for all mankind for life's justifying," Rom. 5:18.  Let us notice this minutely.  The one offense of Adam was for all mankind.  No matter how many offenses Adam committed later, it was only the first one that constituted him a sinner.  And no matter how many offenses we have committed. Not one of our offenses made us sinners.  The ONE offense of Adam was for all mankind for condemnation.  Not that Adam planned it that way.  No; it was God's plan. It was He Who saw to it that the one offense brought all into condemnation.  

It was just that the Christ, upon Whom was laid our lawlessness, should become rid of this burden of guilt when He died, and that, as a proof of this, He should be saved out of death, Heb. 5:7.  This was a just award.  But it was not an award for Christ, only, but it was so for all mankind for life's justifying.  Ponder it well, brethren.  It was just that Adam should be condemned because of his offense.  And as the offense was committed for all mankind, it was just that all mankind should share in the condemnation.  It was just that Christ should be saved out of death, and that the sin that He bore should not pursue Him in His resurrected life.  And, as this award is for all mankind, it is justice to Christ that all shall share in the blessing, which means, life's justifying. 

The apostle tells us that God wills that all mankind be saved, and come into a realization of the truth, I Tim. 2:3,4.  He shows us, further, that this is accomplished because there is one God and one mediator of God and mankind, a Man, Christ Jesus, Who is giving Himself a correspondent Ransom for all.  How easy this is to understand!  A ransom is demanded.  Christ pays it by giving Himself.  How reasonable, then, that all shall be saved. 

I am not discounting those passages that tell of judging and chastening.  They must be true, if salvation is to be a fact.  Judging is setting matters right.  Chastening is remedial.  It is not said that sinners are "punished."  Chastening is the word. It is not final.  It is one of God's processes, to cause mankind to appreciate good.  That which is final is salvation.  Nothing less than the salvation of all, can be commensurate with the sacrifice. 

The writer of the Hebrew letter tells us in 9:26 that, through His sacrifice, the Christ repudiates sin.  How glorious!  Sin was a necessary thing, for mankind must be brought into the depths before being lifted into the heights.  They must be acquainted with evil, in order to fully know good.  They must be alienated, as a prelude to reconciliation.  they must be lost, for only the lost have a Saviour.  But sin will nave served its purpose, some time.  Then it will be repudiated.  It can never come again, for there will be no further need of it.  

May we appreciate the Christ and His great salvation, so that, henceforth, our lives shall be dedicated to His service.  Let us serve, not with the idea of getting something from Him; let us serve because we have hearts full of gratitude. 

Salvation is not found in our works.  It is in grace.  This means that God gives to us far better than we deserve.  He does it, not because of anything that we have done, but because He designs that we shall have salvation.  He does not wait until we began to desire salvation before He does anything about it.  He in Whose hand is the king's heart, Prov. 21:1, also holds the hearts of all mankind.  He can turn the heart and cause the vilest sinner to desire salvation.  Yes, He can attune our hearts to His own.  He will not fail in a single case, for the sacrifice has been made, and sin is not in the way. He really is GOD! 


Administration means management.  Paul's second administration is called the administration of the  grace of God, Eph. 3:2.  It began after Israel was completely set aside.  Grace in SALVATION is as pronounced in the epistles written for the former administration—I and II Thess., I and II Cor., Titus, I Tim., Gal., and Rom.—as is is in the ones written later.  But grace in ADMINISTRATION is not.  

The former administration of Paul had more or less law, and, therefore, considerable harshness.  Even God's acts were not altogether in grace, as we see in the setting aside troublesome Circumcision members of Christ, He reconciles them with Uncircumcision saints in one body.  And in our dealing with each other, we are to act in grace a hundred per cent.  We are to be no longer concerned about doing right; we are to be careful to do far more than right.  we are to not be treating people as they deserve; we are to treat them far better than they deserve. 

"Dealing graciously with one another," is the watchword for our conduct in this administration. 

For a long time God moved toward this ideal condition—a condition of absolute absence of law—a condition of pure grace in administration as well as in salvation.  After the close of the Acts of the Apostles He reached it.  It is an administration and a condition that must remain until the body of Christ is taken away from the earth.  Not until then will grace in administration give way to indignation. 

In the Philippian letter Paul says he wants a righteousness that is not of law.  He could not be thinking of justification, since he hat that, already.  He had come to know that not ACTS, but ATTITUDE, is what counts in this administration.  Not that service is to be discounted.  The idea is, we have learned to not count on our service for God's approval. 

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