On the Plains of Moab Blog
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June 4, 2011, 12:42 PM

Red-Meat Reformed! A Prequel

Red Meat Reformed is my way of describing someone who is TR.  TR stands for being Truly Reformed.  People who are TR are gung ho on "the doctrines of grace".   That phrase means, above all things, the sovereignty of God in salvation.  Salvation is God's gift.  It is not our own doing in any way.  The most stinging accusation that can penetrate the heart of the TR is to hear the words "Works Righteousness" describe any part of their teaching or preaching.  Being TR or Red-Meat Reformed means taking no prisoners.  Wiping out all opposition at the altar of truth.  A common joke line reserved for TRs is this:  "Sometimes right; sometimes wrong; never in doubt!"

We all know someone of that persuasion.  The text in Deuteronomy tomorrow that I will be preaching from, is one that I think, gave rise to many seemingly Red Meat texts in the New Testament, pressing the point, fleshing it out:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world…. (Eph. 1:3-4 ESV).

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world….But God, being rich in mercy…made us alive together with Christ….For by grace you have been saved through faith.  And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. (Eph. 2:1-2, 4-5, 8-9 ESV).

…All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus….Then what becomes of our boasting?  It is excluded.  (Rom. 3:23-24, 27 ESV).

God saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began…. (2 Tim. 1:9 ESV).

This is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins….We love because he first loved us. (1 John 4:10, 19 ESV).

What I hope to drive home tomorrow is that these texts shouldn't make us more rigid in our doctrine.  These Bible truths shouldn't make us meaner.  These words were never intended to turn us into avid heretic hunters.  Rather, I suggest that if God was so gracious and good to us when we were so undeserving, how then could we go forward and mangle these beautiful truths that encourage us to overflow with a spirit of graciousness?   We were loved when we were unloveable.  How could we do any less?  We simply shouldn't and can't!  That's my point.

Even though New Hope is not a Red Meat church -- and that's probably a good thing -- I think we can all do well to think through what our Faith should look like on the outside because Christ is on the inside.  How does God's provision and protection impact the way we look at life; live life and treat others?  This text has a lot to say to us.  See you tomorrow!

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