A New Discipleship Tool

Tim Chester has created a helpful mnemonic device for internalizing gospel truth. When tempted, we should turn to the "4 G's." The 4 G's are truths about God; namely that he is great, gracious, good and glorious. As these truths become part of our functional belief system, we are lberated from various idols (e.g. control, approval, pride, etc.). This fall, we've talked extensively about the 4 G's. I figured it'd be useful to list them with Scriptural support. Hopefully this gives shape and depth to the truths we confess. Keep in mind, this list isn't meant to be comprehensive (how could it be?!). Moreover, I'd encourage you to peruse the various passages in which these verses are found. During times of confession and accountability, I hope you can utilize this resource to encourage one another with glorious gospel truth. 

The 4 G’s: Freedom from Sin through Gospel Truth

1. God is great, so we don’t have to be in control…

  • Exodus 15:18 – “The LORD will reign forever and ever."
  • Deuteronomy 10:17 – “For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God.”
  • Job 34:14-15 – “If he should set his heart to it and gather to himself his spirit and his breath,  15 all flesh would perish together, and man would return to dust.
  • Job 37:23 – “The Almighty - we cannot find him; he is great in power; justice and abundant righteousness he will not violate.
  • Psalm 22:28 – “For kingship belongs to the LORD, and he rules over the nations.”
  • Psalm 29:10 – “The LORD sits enthroned over the flood; the LORD sits enthroned as king forever.”
  • Psalm 95:3 – “For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods.”
  • Psalm 115:3 – “Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases.
  • Psalm 145:3 – “Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable.”
  • Daniel 4:35 – “[H]e does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, "What have you done?
  • Ephesians 1:11 – “[H]e works all things according to the counsel of his will.”
  • Colossians 1:17 – “[I]n him all things hold together.”
  • Hebrews 1:3 – “[H]e upholds the universe by the word of his power.”

2. God is gracious, so we don’t have to prove ourselves…

  • Exodus 34:6 – "The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness”
  • Psalm 30:5 – “[H]is anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.”
  • Psalm 103:10-13 – “He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities.  11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;  12 as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.  13 As a father shows compassion to his children, so the LORD shows compassion to those who fear him.”
  • Psalm 130:3-4 – “If you, O LORD, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand?  4 But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared.”
  • Isaiah 1:18 – "Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.”
  • Isaiah 30:18-19 – “[T]he LORD waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you.”
  • Isaiah 40:1-2 – “Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. 2 Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that her warfare is ended, that her iniquity is pardoned.”
  • Isaiah 40:11 – “He will tend his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms; he will carry them in his bosom, and gently lead those that are with young.”
  • Isaiah 54:8 – “In overflowing anger for a moment I hid my face from you, but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you."
  • Hosea 11:8-9 – “How can I give you up, O Ephraim? How can I hand you over, O Israel? How can I make you like Admah? How can I treat you like Zeboiim? My heart recoils within me; my compassion grows warm and tender.  9 I will not execute my burning anger; I will not again destroy Ephraim; for I am God and not a man, the Holy One in your midst, and I will not come in wrath.”
  • Lamentations 3:22-23 – “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; 23 they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”
  • Matthew 5:45 – “[God] makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”
  • Matthew 11:28-30 – “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
  • John 1:14, 16-17 – “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth… 16 And from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”
  • Romans 3:23-24 – “[F]or all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.”
  • Romans 5:6-8 – “For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will scarcely die for a righteous person- though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die-  8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
  • Romans 5:20-21 – “[W]here sin increased, grace abounded all the more,  21so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
  • Ephesians 1:3-6 – “[H]e chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,  6 to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.”
  • Ephesians 2:4-9 – “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ- by grace you have been saved- 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast."
  • 2 Timothy 1:8-9 – “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."
  • Titus 3:4-5 – “But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy.”
  • Hebrews 4:15-16 – “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” 

3. God is good, so we don’t have to look elsewhere…

  • Genesis 1:31 – “And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.”
  • Genesis 50:20 – “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.”
  • Psalm 4:7-8 – “You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound. 8 In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.”
  • Psalm 16:11 – “You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
  • Psalm 23:6 – “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.”
  • Psalm 25:8 – “Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in the way.”
  • Psalm 31:19 – “Oh, how abundant is your goodness, which you have stored up for those who fear you and worked for those who take refuge in you, in the sight of the children of mankind!”
  • Psalm 34:8 – “Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!”
  • Psalm 34:10 – “The young lions suffer want and hunger; but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.”
  • Psalm 63:3-7 – “Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. 4 So I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will lift up my hands. 5 My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips, 6 when I remember you upon my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night;  7 for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy.”
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    Psalm 84:11 – “For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.”
  • Psalm 106:1 – “Praise the LORD! Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!”
  • Psalm 107:9 – “For he satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things.”
  • Psalm 145:9 – “The LORD is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made.”
  • Isaiah 55:1-2 – "Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. 2 Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food.”
  • Jeremiah 31:12-14 – “They shall come and sing aloud on the height of Zion, and they shall be radiant over the goodness of the LORD, over the grain, the wine, and the oil, and over the young of the flock and the herd; their life shall be like a watered garden, and they shall languish no more. 13 Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance, and the young men and the old shall be merry. I will turn their mourning into joy; I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow. 14 I will feast the soul of the priests with abundance, and my people shall be satisfied with my goodness, declares the LORD.”
  • Lamentations 3:25 – “The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.”
  • Nahum 1:7 – “The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; he knows those who take refuge in him.”
  • Zephaniah 3:17 – “The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.”
  •  Zechariah 9:16-17 – “On that day the LORD their God will save them, as the flock of his people; for like the jewels of a crown they shall shine on his land. 17 For how great is his goodness, and how great his beauty! Grain shall make the young men flourish, and new wine the young women.” 
  • Matthew 6:25-26 – “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?”
  • Luke 11:11-13 – “What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; 12 or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
  • Romans 8:28 – “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
  • 1 Timothy 4:4 – “For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving.”
  • James 1:17 – “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.”

4. God is glorious, so we don’t have to fear others…

  • Exodus 15:11 – “Who is like you, O LORD, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?”
  • Exodus 33:20 – “[Y]ou cannot see my face, for man shall not see me and live."
  • Psalm 27:1 – “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
  • Psalm 27:4 – “One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.”
  • Psalm 50:2 – “Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God shines forth.”
  • Psalm 96:9 – “Worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness; tremble before him, all the earth!”
  •  Psalm 76:4 – “Glorious are you, more majestic than the mountains of prey.”
  • Psalm 96:5-6 – “For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols, but the LORD made the heavens. 6 Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.”
  • Psalm 104:1 – You are clothed with splendor and majesty.”
  • Psalm 114:7-8 – “Tremble, O earth, at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the God of Jacob.”
  • Psalm 118:6 – “The LORD is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”
  • Isaiah 6:3 – “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!"
  • Isaiah 40:12-15 – “Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand and marked off the heavens with a span, enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure and weighed the mountains in scales and the hills in a balance? 13 Who has measured the Spirit of the LORD, or what man shows him his counsel? 14 Whom did he consult, and who made him understand? Who taught him the path of justice, and taught him knowledge, and showed him the way of understanding? 15 Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket, and are accounted as the dust on the scales; behold, he takes up the coastlands like fine dust."
  • Isaiah 40:25-26 – “To whom then will you compare me, that I should be like him? says the Holy One. 26 Lift up your eyes on high and see: who created these? He who brings out their host by number, calling them all by name, by the greatness of his might, and because he is strong in power not one is missing.”
  • Isaiah 46:9-10 – “I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, 10 declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose.’”
  • Isaiah 51:7-8 – “[F]ear not the reproach of man, nor be dismayed at their revilings.  8 For the moth will eat them up like a garment, and the worm will eat them like wool; but my righteousness will be forever, and my salvation to all generations.”
  • Matthew 10:28 – “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”
  • 1 Timothy 6:15-16 – “[H]e who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords,  16 who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen.”
  • Revelation 5:12-13 – “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!"… "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!"