For Jesus’ Sake Is. 48: 9-11 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
We get the idea sometimes as Christians that all the good things of salvation were given to us to demonstrate God’s love for us. We look at salvation simply from the view of what God did for us. It’s as if every good thing the Lord did was for our sakes. Certainly, we are better off for having been saved. But that’s not the main reason God saved us. He saved us and forgave us for Christ’s sake [Eph 4:32]. He didn’t do it for our sakes; we certainly weren’t worthy.
According to this text, there are three other things the Lord does for Jesus’ sake. We must understand why the Lord does what he does in each of these cases. That way, we won’t be so self-centered when we find ourselves on the receiving end of one of these things. We should remember that God is doing something for Jesus’ sake. Here are three things that are for Jesus’ sake:
God’s forbearance is for the sake of Jesus’ name – Is 48:9 – “for my name’s sake will I defer mine anger” – many a sinner thinks he’s getting away with his sin because God hasn’t poured out his wrath on him – but the Lord forbears, not for the sinner’s sake but for the sake of Jesus’ name – his is the name of salvation [Matt 1:21] – “there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved,” [Acts 4:12].
God’s eternal security is for the sake of Jesus’ praise – Is 48:9 – “for my praise will I refrain for thee, that I cut thee not off” – Christians have a variety of views concerning eternal security – some say that you can lose your salvation but that’s because they look at eternal security from man’s point of view rather than from the view of Christ’s praise – they allow that their righteous living is what keeps them saved, thus diminishing Jesus’ praise – many a backslidden Christian has come back to the Lord and their praise to Jesus is incessant because he didn’t cut them off – eternal security flows from God’s everlasting covenant with Israel whereby he doesn’t cut them off even for all the wicked things that they have done against him [idolatry, blasphemy, adultery, disobedience, rejection, etc.] – for this he alone is worthy of our praise forever [Rev 5:12].
God’s fiery trial is for the sake of Jesus’ glory – Is 48:10-11 – “I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction. For mine own sake… I will not give my glory unto another” – Jesus suffered to enter into his glory [Lk 24:26; 1 Pet 1:11] – likewise to share in his glory we must suffer [1 Pet 4:12-14] – in our bodies we are to glorify God [1 Cor 6:20] and we do that by suffering [1 Pet 2:19-24] – hence, as a result we are glorified together with him [Rom 8:17-18].
Conclusion: If you are the recipient of God’s forbearance, don’t think for a minute that has anything to do with you – the Lord defers his anger waiting on you to get saved by the name of Jesus – if you are the recipient of God’s mercy in eternal security don’t think for a minute that it’s because what you are doing isn’t that bad – the Lord refrains from cutting you off for Jesus’ praise – and if you are suffering for Christ’s sake just remember that it’s for his glory and he alone is worthy!!