Devotional on Larger Catechism Q&A 36

Devotional on Larger Catechism Q&A 36

Devotional on Westminster Larger Catechism Q&A 36

Q&A 36: What are the benefits which in this life do accompany or flow from justification, adoption, and sanctification?

A: “The benefits which in this life do accompany or flow from justification, adoption, and sanctification, are, assurance of God’s love, peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Ghost, increase of grace, and perseverance therein to the end.”

Reflection

The Christian journey, while marked by trials and challenges, is also richly endowed with divine benefits that affirm God’s unfailing promises to us. These benefits—assurance of God’s love, peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Spirit, increase of grace, and perseverance—are not just future hopes but present realities for those who are justified, adopted into God’s family, and being sanctified.

Assurance of God’s Love

The assurance of God’s love is a profound comfort to believers. Romans 5:5 reminds us, “God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” This assurance sustains us, reminding us that we are beloved children of God, regardless of our circumstances.

Peace of Conscience

Peace of conscience comes from knowing our sins are forgiven and that we stand righteous before God through Christ. This peace, which Philippians 4:7 describes as surpassing all understanding, guards our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus, allowing us to live free from the tyranny of guilt and shame.

Joy in the Holy Ghost

Joy in the Holy Ghost is a supernatural gladness given by the Spirit, rooted not in our external circumstances but in the eternal realities of the gospel. As 1 Peter 1:8-9 expresses, though we have not seen Christ, we love Him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, receiving the outcome of our faith, the salvation of our souls.

Increase of Grace

The increase of grace is a progressive deepening and strengthening of our faith and Christian character as we grow in our understanding and application of the gospel. Second Peter 3:18 exhorts us to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

Perseverance to the End

Perseverance to the end ensures that those who are truly regenerate and justified will continue in faith and will not ultimately fall away. It is both a promise and a command. Philippians 2:12-13 tells us to “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”

Application

Cultivate Assurance: Regularly reflect on the truths of Scripture that affirm God’s love for you. Let these truths shape your identity and responses to life’s challenges.

Seek Peace: Confess sins promptly and trust in God’s forgiveness as a means to maintain peace of conscience. Let this peace rule in your heart, and be thankful (Colossians 3:15).

Embrace Joy: Engage in regular worship, both privately and with others, as a means to stir up the joy of the Holy Spirit within you.

Pursue Growth: Be intentional about spiritual disciplines that foster growth in grace—prayer, Scripture reading, fasting, and fellowship with other believers.

Persevere in Faith: Lean on the Lord for strength to persevere in your faith journey. Surround yourself with a community that encourages and supports perseverance.

    Conclusion

    The benefits of our salvation are both a comfort and a call to action. They are gifts of grace meant to be actively pursued and cherished. May we walk in these truths, experiencing the fullness of life that God intends for us, and encouraging others to do the same. Amen.