Four Features of a Believer
One of the great joys of David’s life was the momentous occasion when the Ark of God was brought back to its resting place in Jerusalem. It inspired a song of thanksgiving from the heart of the sweet singer of Israel as the whole city reverberated with holy joy. Toward the end of the song, David described four features that may be applied to all young believers of our day. He says, “Save us, O God of our salvation, and gather us together, and deliver us from the heathen, that we may give thanks to Thy holy name arid glory in Thy praise.” (1 Chronicles 16:35).
is the first Characteristic feature: “Save us, O God of our salvation.” We are a saved people. Salvation is the foundation of every thing to us for time and eternity. Salvation is a word of broad meaning in Scripture, but let us now consider that God’s salvation is a deliverance from every peril that could threaten us, whether in the past, present, or future.
Our past deliverance is by the death of Christ. When we trusted Him and His finished work of the Cross, that moment the sins of the past were forgiven. Our penalty, death (Romans 6:23), was forever removed (John 5:24), our fear of hell was gone (Psalm 40:3), and our guilty conscience was purged (Hebrews 9:14). We now look back to Calvary by faith and through His death can say that we have been saved.
Our present deliverance is by the priesthood of Christ. As our Great High Priest in Heaven, He succors us by His present intercessory work. We also have the Holy Spirit of God, as our indwelling Comforter within our hearts, and the Word of God, as our counsellor and guide. Thus our God by the priesthood of Christ, with the Holy Spirit and the Scriptures, has provided us with present power for deliverance from our threefold enemy: the world, the flesh and the Devil. We are being saved.
Our future deliverance is by the coming of Christ. Blessed be His Name! Our complete deliverance will be effected, spirit, soul and body, at His return. Surely, young believer, ours is a blessed hope. We shall be saved.
is the second characteristic feature, for the passage says, “Gather us together.” It is not for isolation but for holy association that our God has sent the Holy Spirit from Heaven, so that His people may be gathered together, forming the Body of Christ.
This heavenly association, formed by the Spirit of God at Pentecost, unites eternally every believer with Christ the Head in Heaven and also with every member. The Cross is the foundation of this heavenly people for, through the work of Christ at Calvary, God has made the One New Man. (Ephesians 2:13-16). To maintain this fellowship with Him and with one another, we must obey His word in the sevenfold spirit of lowliness, meekness, long-suffering, forbearance, love, diligence and peace. (Eph. 4:3-6).
is the third characteristic, suggested by the words, “Deliver us from the heathen.” God’s protection for Israel depended upon their separation from the nations around them, never upon their federation with them. This principle is to govern us today as His people.
Through the guidance of the Spirit of God and His Word, we are to be separated from all moral and doctrinal evil and all unequal yokes. Though we are in the world we should not be of it.
A positive emphasis upon this truth demands that we be separated unto the Father, perfecting holiness in the fear of God, in order to enjoy the love of the Father. (2 Corinthians 6:18-7:1). We are to be separated unto Jesus also, taking our place with Him in His rejection. “Let us go forth, therefore, unto Him without the camp, bearing His reproach.” (Heb. 13:13).
Our separation should have the testimony of this twofold character—separated from evil and separated unto the Father and the Son—to maintain a Scriptural testimony for the glory of God.
is the final characteristic feature that we will notice, “that we may give thanks to Thy Holy Name and glory in Thy praise.” God’s purpose and desire for us is to make us a worshipping people, offering the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His Name. Heb. 13:15.
One essential of Christian worship is that we worship the Father. To the woman at the well, the Lord Jesus said, “The true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father seeketh such to worship Him.” (John 4:23). Since, through His beloved Son, God is known by us as Father, in the joy of our Salvation, Association and Separation, our hearts should be exclaiming, “Abba, Father, we adore Thee!” The Divine objective in saving us, gathering us and separating us is that eternally with Himself we shall fill the universe to come with our endless praises unto the Father.
May God, by our yielding to the Holy Spirit, manifest these marks of Divine glory upon our features even now, for His Name’s sake!