In this episode
- A reminder to subscribe to our newsletter
- Another impression!
- A segment from chapter 4 of our audiobook
- Notes from the blog
- Episode blog post: Faith: an inconceivable reality
- Podcast introduction: Yabo Obien
- Logo design: Jeff Lyons at Light & Story
- Original music: Makeup and Vanity Set
- Kindle version of Precious Remedies against Satan’s Devices by John Hendryx at Monergism.com
- Text for Precious Remedies provided by GraceGems.org
Welcome back to the Theodio Podcast, I’m your host Dan Kassis.
Each week here on Theodio we’re walking though the book Precious Remedies against Satan’s Devices by Thomas Brooks, one section at a time. Along with a segment of our original audio production of the book, we provide commentary and fresh insight, bringing this work of classic theology to life for you.
Last time we started chapter 4 of *Precious Remedies*, a list of eight devices Satan uses to attack our hearts, our emotions. The first of these devices is to keep us dwelling on our sins instead of on our Savior.
The subject of this episode is assurance, the belief that Christ’s promise to “complete the good work he began in us” is unbreakable, independent of our faithfulness. If our enemy can undermine that, we can end up doubting our salvation.
Before we begin, I want to let you know about the Theodio Blog. It’s where this whole project started. Each post breaks down and explains these devices and their remedies, one at a time. Just go to theodio.com and click the “blog” link on the top menu to see the whole series, starting with the most recent.
At the end of every post, and on the homepage too, there’s an opportunity to sign up for our newsletter. All we need for now is your email address. Sign up, then check your email account for a confirmation from us. Click that link and you’re good to go. You’ll be the first to know when we publish a new post, and you’ll also learn about special offers on products, like our full audiobook version of Precious Remedies. Sign up today.
Okay, on with the show. If you’ve been with us for a while you may remember early on I did an impression of Winnie the Pooh. Thank you for indulging me. And I’m about to do another one. Let’s see if you recognize this.
“You keep using that word. I do not think that word means what you think it means.”
It’s one of the most recognizable lines from one of the most quotable movies in the history of cinema. And it perfectly illustrates the point of this device of Satan.
The word in question is: inconceivable. And what prompted that line from Inigo Montoya in The Princess Bride was its consistent misuse. For something to be “inconceivable,” it actually must be preposterous, infinitely unlikely, a one-in-a billion happenstance. Not just something you wish hadn’t happened.
Similarly, in order to call a thing “faith” according to the Christian religion, it must line up with what Scripture calls faith. Not just what we think faith might be.
Satan wants us to think that if we do not have the most fully developed, fully assured faith in Christ and in his forgiveness of our sins, we don’t really have faith at all.
He wants us to believe there are no degrees of faith, no growth, no development in faith over time. Either we are fully confident in our salvation at all times and in all circumstances, or we are lost.
Faith and flight
Here’s a story that illustrates this problem, borrowed from Tim Keller.
Imagine two people boarding an airplane. The first person has never seen an aircraft and has no concept of human flight. He has almost no faith in the plane or its crew. His fears and doubts nearly paralyze him. The second person flies for business every week. It has become commonplace to him. He has great confidence in the plane and crew.
Both persons board the plane, which carries them to their destination. Both persons experience the blessings of human flight, but with differing experiences. Both persons act on the amount of faith they have, with equal results. This is because the object of their faith – the plane, or its crew depending on your preference – is the same.*
The sin is believing we should have faith in our faith, rather than in the Object of our faith. The One who both began and will finish our faith is the only One qualified to define it.
The good news is that, by faith, Christ forgives us of this sin, too. And his servant, Thomas Brooks, has provided a few means by which we can counter Satan’s attacks against our true, biblical faith.
Let’s listen now.
That concludes this episode of the Theodio Podcast. Next time we’ll discuss a very relevant topic these days: suffering. Why does God allow it? What good is it? What role doe suffering play, if any, in a Christian’s life?
As much as we’re all facing these questions, I hope you’ll come back and listen again, and find some answers. Thanks for joining us.