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November 22, 2020 1:00 am
They say it’s always darkest just before the dawn. Knowing that a glorious eternal destiny awaits makes any believer’s present suffering worthwhile. In this message we learn about the final gift God gives to all who trust Christ.Click here to listen (Duration 54:30)
They say it's always darkest just before the dawn, knowing that a glorious eternal destiny awaits makes any believers present suffering worthwhile today. The final gift God gives to all who trust Christ from Chicago.
We welcome you to The Moody Church. Our weekly service of worship and teaching under the ministry of Dr. Erwin lutes are today we bring you the last in an eight part series on the inheritance of the redeemed later. Erwin lutes will speak on the gift of glorification Dr. lutes or comes now to open our time of worship. We've been praying that despite all that goes on in our life that is oftentimes very complicated that we might be able to focus as one person is wasting together glorify God together, learn together worship together in the name of Christ. As far as my sermon today is concerned it is going to be completing this series of messages. The inheritance of the redeemed, so I'm going to be speaking about glorification and thank you so much for being here as we worship together.
Let's now bow together in prayer, even as we will be participating in remembering hosanna in the highest father, thank you today for your presence. Thank you for the glory that surrounds Jesus wherever he is, we want to take our place with those who gave him praise on Palm Sunday and sing. Indeed, hosanna blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord unite our hearts for your glory. We pray in Jesus name, amen. I think that we can pasted together my pace because you like a king in Vienna next just like the people enter is the only thing I can. I live today now live in safety and collective faith in Jesus and that will never end and you only pay St. in time" with me and says anything to you say line Ethan and sentiment. Once this took place to share what was spoken by the prophet, saying, say to Diane King is coming, and mounted on a donkey and a cart full of the beasts of burden.
Jesus had directed the court clerk click send around branches from the change and spank my shouting. He and when temple Jesus, yet you never know nursing babies, you've prepared praying. And he said I tell you that you see change in the current charging you into thinking having therefore numbers himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. He will you know there are plenty of examples of people who were wealthy and who either didn't know it, or they knew it and they refused to enjoy what they had. We really need to look no further than Bertie Adams. She died on Easter Sunday.
Back in 1976 in Palm Springs.
Bertie died of malnutrition.
That's what her death certificate, said, but when they investigated, they discovered that she had a lockbox in which she had certificates worth about $200,000 and then another lockbox that was worth about $600,000. Here's a woman who died of malnutrition, but she did not enter into the wealth that she had either because of ignorance or because of other issues and imagine that there are many people who are wealthy who may make some very poor friends but they do become very good ancestors if they include you in their will, and she apparently included some relatives in their will in her will and you can imagine the surprise when they discovered how much they had the purpose of this series of messages. The inheritance of the redeemed. The purpose of this series has been for us to at least get some kind of a Windows some kind of an understanding of all that we have in Jesus. When we believe on him. He was spared not his own son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not also with him freely give us all things. This is the last in a series of eight messages on this topic. We could've preached a lot more but hopefully as a result of this, we begin to understand much better. The wonder of our salvation and the graciousness of our God will today as we end this series I'm going to be speaking on the topic of glorification is really the end result of all that God has done for us and that is that we someday are going to be glorified. But before we get to glorification were going to speak about suffering and will see glorification within that context. If you have your Bibles would you turn to the eighth chapter the book of Romans Romans chapter 8 and this is the passage that I want you to look at a remarkable passage and we are going to begin with suffering in and with the glorification the summary of this message is really Romans chapter 8 verse 18 where we read these words, for I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that shall be revealed in us. So first of all, speak about suffering and then will speak about the glory that is to be revealed in us. That's where were going and once again I want you to open your mind open your heart open your Bible back and enjoy as we go on this tour of the blessings that we have in Jesus Christ our Lord.
But first of all suffering.
You'll notice that in verse 19, Paul says for the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God, and then it goes on to say in verse 22 for we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now want you to hang on for a moment and I'm going to explain what's happening in those verses what the apostle Paul is saying is just like when Adam sinned, the whole creation was cursed, it was not possible, it was not possible that an imperfect, sinful Adam live in the beauty of God's original perfect creation. So when man's sin. The earth was cursed and we know it's cursed because we have the storms we have earthquakes we have tsunamis we have tornadoes we have drought this earth is cursed and what Paul is going to say is this, that the creation therefore is groaning at this present time, and it is eagerly looking forward very eagerly to the time when the sons of God are going to be revealed and manifested, because creation is waiting for us to be redeemed and when we enter into our eternal redemption.
It is then that creation is going to be re-created and it will be made perfect back into its original state. That's why the apostle Paul says that creation groans and looking forward eagerly to the redemption of the sons of God. That's in verse 19.
And not only does creation grown says in verse 22 for we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth now and not only that creation but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit. We groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for the adoption of sons, the redemption of our bodies. That's what were going to be talking about in a few moments is the redemption of our bodies and so we groan their all kinds of circumstances of suffering that speak to us very clearly and they militate mitigate I should say against faith because they remind us of the fact that we are fallen in this world is oftentimes very difficult in life is hard.
Cancer, for example, is something that is willing to take on faith, cancer, actually, as we respond to it and its possibilities is a test of our faith, but so are all kinds of other things, bad marriages, the death of the child poverty and abuse. All of these things tend to challenge our faith. But the Bible says that this is to be expected because the suffering of this present world is huge and so creation groans for redemption. We groan for our own redemption so that we might receive the redemption of our bodies and then creation will follow us, and be perfected so much about the doctrine of suffering now.
Second, I want you to notice how the apostle Paul shows us the extent to which God went in order to redeem us. How did God redeem us and what did God do it says in verse 26 likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness for we don't know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with the groanings too deep for words creation groans. We groan, even the spirit groans deep within us when we want to pray and don't know how to and then it says, and he who searches that the hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit.
Verse 28 and we know that for those who love God all things work together for good to those who are the called according to his purpose. Wish I could count on that verse for a moment, but we have to continue to hurry on through this passage.
All of the suffering that we've spoken about God uses it for our good and for his glory. He makes it fit together for our good. Especially if we respond to it correctly and then Paul goes on to say that this is the way in which God redeemed us and this is in many respects a lovely summary of the various messages that we preached on the inheritance of the redeemed. I mean we spoke about predestination. We spoke about the gift of righteousness.
The Holy Spirit, the need and the supplying of an advocate. All of these things are ours in Jesus, and here Paul summarizes the gospel of redemption notice. Beginning in verse 29 for those whom he foreknew now before I get to verse 29 and 30. I want to remind you that there are here five verbs five verbs that I hope you take the time to underline in your Bible. It is God really who is the worker.
It is God who is the subject of these verbs and we are the ones who are the object salvation is entirely of God, and Paul lays out now five verbs that are like a golden chain like a link that links everything together. It begins in eternity past and it completes itself in eternity future. And then, but will see as it ends in glory. Look at the text first of all, notice that Tim he says for those whom he foreknew this is verse 29. As I've explained in previous messages when you have the word for no it does not mean simply to know ahead of time. God knows all things ahead of time what it means is that God, the foreknew God for loved us, just like the nation Israel. It says you only have I foreknown of all the nations of the earth will God for knows all things.
It means that I loved you in advance.
So remember this, you can put your name in this here that if you're a believer in Jesus Christ.
You are loved in advance. You were foreknown and then those whom he foreknew the Bible says he predestinated when I began this series of messages.
The very first message that I preached was on predestination how that we are actually a part of God's program all the way from eternity past to eternity future and that he laid us out.
He went ahead of us and he like a survey or he's the one who surveyed the land in the territory and determine what we would become, for those whom he foreknew he predestinated to be conformed to the image of his son that he that is, Jesus might be the firstborn among many brothers and now notice we've covered two of the verbs. He foreknew he predestinated them and those whom he predestinated. He also called know in the Bible.
There are a number of different calls, there's the general call.
Many are called your chosen Jesus said but there's also the specific call to salvation. And that's what Paul is thinking about here there is that specific call.
For example, in first Corinthians chapter 1 it says that those who are called, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God, to those who are called, and so if you're a believer today you heard the call of God.
And if you're not a believer I hope and pray that you hear the call of God is the specific call to salvation. If the first two words whom he foreknew and predestinated had to do with eternity past, God's plan. The calling now is an experience that we have in this life. When we are called to salvation. Well, notice those whom he called he justified once again in this series, you remember I spoke about the righteousness of God and the doctrine of justification and now notice those whom he justified, he glorified so as we think about it. We are already glorified as far as God is concerned every one of these verbs is in the past 10 he foreknew as he predestined us he called us and he also glorified us. There is no break in this chain the number that he begins with those of me for knows and predestinated are the same number in which he ends up glorifying them. Now we come to the doctrine of glorification and for this we really do need a lot of wisdom and we need the help of the Holy Spirit because there is no way for us to really get our minds around what glorification is, unless we read the text of Scripture and we pray for grace to be able to accept it to believe it, and in some way understand before I give you some characteristics of glorification. Let me read another passage of Scripture for you.
This is what the Bible says in the book of Philippians, but our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Now notice carefully who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. Don't hurry over the text. Our body is going to be like on to his glorious body and then in first John chapter 3, we have this remarkable passage see what kind of love the Father has given to us that we should be called children of God. And so we are the reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him now again let us be careful.
Beloved, we are God's children now and what we will be has not yet appeared but we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. Imagine that, like unto his glorious body.
So what I'd like to do now very quickly is to simply give you five characteristics of the body that shall someday be ours the glorious body which is in our future.
First of all I want to emphasize that will be your body. Your body all you say well on you know that's very obvious will to some people it isn't there.
Those who believe. For example, that there's going to be a resurrection and this resurrection is really of the soul, for example know it's your body and of course, as I explained in every single Easter service and will continue to do so. If I preach at Easter time is the fact that there is continuity between the body that you have today in the body that you're going to have in the future.
The apostle Paul likens it on to his seed that is put in the ground. He says in that seed begins to grow and when that seed grows. When you have a tulip for example, and you planted the bulb. There is something in that tulip that was in the bulb that you planted there is continuity but also is very different. There'd be no way that you could simply look at the bulb and and know in advance how it was going to turn out unless by experience.
It is been observed over a period of time because it is very different in the very same way it will be your body and it will be you.
The principle of identity when we see Adam and when we see Abraham and Isaac, and Jacob. Someday in the heavenly's and I assume that we indeed are because were going to be along with them. The Bible says when we see them.
Abraham will be Abraham, Isaac, will be Isaac, Jacob will be Jacob and you will be who you are buying name the very same person with all your memories with all your aptitudes with all of your desires that have been refined and purified and made totally holy. You and I are going to be the very same people over there that we are here will we know each other. Of course, none of the Bible talks about the Mount of Transfiguration, Moses and Elijah show up and there's some apostles that are there, Peter, James and John and they know one another. We will intuitively know each other. I don't believe that in heaven will need nametags and thank God. The time will come when we will finally be able to remember one another's name that is really something I'm looking and saying, oh God, bring the future and bring it quickly wonderful in the presence of one another, knowing each other from earth. Of course you're going to know your mother you're going to know your father, you're going to know your uncle. You're even going to know the one who was in his kind to you in his will as he should have been ill be there to if he's a believer in Christ, and together we shall be, it'll be your body. Second notice it's going to be a perfect body because it's like unto Jesus.
It is now a glorified body. You'll never need a knee replacement. Some of you say praise God from whom all blessings flow. I had one man who had both knees replaced and he said, never, never, never again the next time he says I get some new knees. It's at the time of glorification absolutely so that will be no need for healthcare and will be very very wonderful unknow disease no limitations in terms of the physical limitations in oh scientists don't they say that we get a new set of cells. Every seven years, but have you ever noticed every time those cells come around and we get that new set.
They're not quite as pretty as the previous set of ever noticed that you ever noticed how much more weary we can be, I'm not talking about myself.
I'm talking about you as we get older and our minds are sometimes not as quick as they used to be and let me explain why once and for all.
The reason that some of us when we speak the word that we want isn't there, is not because there's anything wrong with our minds, our minds are so full of wisdom, it takes a little longer to find and retrieve the information that we need.
That's really what it is that's what a doctor told me and I'm sticking with it going to be a perfect body and the reason it has to be perfect. By the way, I hope this is already clear is because it's going to be in a perfect environment just like our fallen body has to be on accursed earth, so our glorified body is going to be enough glorified environment, namely heaven, so it's going to be a perfect body. It'll be a glorious body. I read the text says in the book of Philippians. I just read he will transform our body like unto his glorious body. I don't know whether or not will be able to transform ourselves like Jesus did on the Mount of Transfiguration, but to the simple fact is that we will have a glorious body. Everybody have a glorious body. No, those who have been redeemed by Christ magic with the words of CS Lewis. Every human being he says is in the process of becoming unknowable, being noble, beyond imagination, or else alas of violent being beyond redemption, he says, remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we joke with work with Mary's snob and exploit immortal horrors or everlasting splendors.
Remember, everybody gets an eternal body. The redeemed in the unredeemed, but their environment is exceedingly different and difficult and and those who are not redeemed. Their body is eternal but it is not a glorious body so it's going to be a glorious body. Let me say also. It's a powerful body when Jesus wanted to move from the Galilee to Jerusalem all that he had to do apparently was to think the thought. I want to be in Jerusalem this is after his resurrection, because we can have a body like that and he was able to be there instantly. Now this doesn't mean that we're going to be in a number of different places.
Only God is omnipresent.
That is to say he is everywhere, but if we want to move from one place in the universe to another place in the universe, we can simply think the thought and we will be wherever we want to be effortlessly known need you now to have to do exercises. One time when I went to Lake Michigan. I saw all of these people early in the morning running one of the things I noticed about them. Not one of them was smiling. I may not run smiling and I'm not surprised.
In heaven, powerful body, no sleep, no need for it. And by the way the streets in the new Jerusalem.
They could be straight.
They could also be vertical. They might be horizontal and vertical. We would be able to travel effortlessly. No matter which direction they went up, down, sideways because were not limited by the spatial kinds of concept.
So imagine it's going to be an eternal body eternal what the Bible says imagine you know we think to ourselves eternity and we say the word, but we don't think of what it is.
Sometimes I've illustrated it this way, imagine a bird coming from another planet taking two grains of sand every 1 million years. This word shows up, takes two grains of sand away.
How long would it take before the whole earth unthinkable eternity is a very long time. And yet the Bible says that we shall reign with him for ever and ever into the ages of the ages for all of eternity. That is the eventual goal and the position of God's redeemed you like his redemption that he provided for us as sinners. Now what we need to do is to bring this down to reality. Don't ever minimize based on Romans chapter 8. Don't ever minimize the value of suffering. Suffering is valuable because we grown the four glory suffering is a reminder of the fact that we want eternity to come and the more suffering.
The more we desire it. That's why all over the world where there is persecution.
There's lots of talk about heaven in places like America where there is no persecution where everybody seems to be doing well. We don't talk about heaven much because we don't look forward to it. Much the apostle Paul says that the suffering of this present world is not worthy to be compared with the glory that shall be revealed in us and in second Corinthians chapter 2, he uses a different illustration.
Chapter 3 he talks about the fact that it's like a scale. He says that the suffering of this present world works for us and eternal weight of glory. Some of us are old enough to remember seriously when they had scales that balance that is to say you know you went into a store and they had a 1 pound weight and on the other side. You know you put a pound of peanuts or whatever it was, and when they balanced you knew that you had a pound the apostle Paul is saying that all the suffering of the world can be placed on one side of the scale that divorces the sickness, the rejection that teenagers sometimes find in high school or elsewhere. All of that can be put over here on this side, the death of a child put all the suffering over here and then the glory that shall be revealed in us is over here and this scale goes plunk is like putting a hair on one side and an elephant on the other there is no comparison. The apostle pulses and the reason that God brings so many trials into our life and so much suffering is so that we might look forward to glory.
We grown and we grown for glory. So don't minimize the value of suffering, God intends to use it in our life. It's part of what we read about earlier that all things work together for good to them who love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Second, don't ever minimize the grace of God. The fact that he took us from the life of sin and on our way to a priceless eternity. He redeemed us. He cleaned us up. He gave us the blessed Holy Spirit as a proof of our redemption.
It is like receiving a ring and then he says the marriage is coming.
Never yet met a man who says actually all that I want or a woman who would say all that I want from him is his ring. That's all I want this to go any further in this relationship, know you know that the purpose of the ring is to prepare for the wedding and as a sign that the wedding is going to happen and the purpose of the Holy Spirit. According to Romans eight is a sign it as a witness to the fact that we are going to belong to Jesus for ever and so what does he do, he exalts us.
I know I've quoted this verse before, but it has to be quoted again where Jesus said he who overcomes, to him shall grant to sit with me on my throne, even as I overcame and sat with my father on his throne.
And the reason we can sit with him on his throne is because we have a body like onto his never minimize the grace of God and then never minimize the fact that we should look eagerly toward the return of Jesus. That's what the apostle Paul says in the passage that we read from the book of Philippians where he says that we await in the Greek text indicates we eagerly await for the coming of Jesus Christ from heaven, so that he will transform our earthly body like onto his glorious body.
We eagerly await to ask you something. What do you eagerly await for you say will I eagerly await for graduation.
There's no doubt that we have some people listening to this, it would answer that way somebody else's.
I eagerly await for marriage. Let me ask you something. How would your life change in mind if we really eagerly awaited the coming of Jesus Christ from heaven being with them forever. Never having any sin ever come between us and him again do look forward to that. That is really proof of regeneration because when we are saved when we become Christians. God by his Holy Spirit implants within us a desire to love Christ, we love Christ, but we continue to love them. We love him even more gust of door, was a painter in Germany and he painted a picture of Jesus. And somebody said and done, you must love Jesus, to paint him like that and he said I do love him but if I loved him more. I could paint him better. The desire of every single Christian is to love him more and to paint him better. And someday he's going to return in our bodies are going to be transformed like unto his glorious body and that will be true for, but of course unless you receive Christ as savior. This inheritance is not yours. That's why I titled this series, the inheritance of the redeemed.
The redeemed are those who responded to Jesus Christ in faith, knowing that they cannot save themselves, but come to receive his mercy, his forgiveness, his righteousness as a free gift given to all those who believe who acknowledge their need to as many as received him, to those he gives the power to become the children of God, even to those who have believed on his name. I said it many times and I'll say it one more time. Life is short. Eternity is long.
It's so important that we prepare for that day. And if you're a believer is as bad as it's ever going to get it's going to get a lot better. I can assure you that praise God.
Let's pray together and then were going to express our love for Jesus and the song father, we thank you today for Jesus, thank you for his unselfish redemption. Thank you that he remembered us in so many different ways. Thank you that he for loved is predestinated as chose us in already in his category. He has already glorified us because you call those things that aren't as if they are, and for that we thank you. Help us to worship Jesus. Well, as we express our love to him. We ask in his name. Amen to stand as we do just that.
Think about spending eternity with Christ and worshiping him in this way and today is church.
Our Dr. Erwin lutes brought the last in a series of eight messages on the inheritance of the redeemed. We hope this series has encouraged you to take stock of all you've been given in Christ. The music of Christmas lifts our hearts above the chaos all around us.
It reminds us that Jesus came to bring us home. The Moody Church choir and orchestra want to share Christmas with you through their CD in all of his glory.
It will be sent as our thank you for your gift of any amount to support The Moody Church. Our call 1-800-215-5001. That's 1-800-215-5001 or write to us at The Moody Church 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 online go to moodyoffer.com that's moodyoffer.com join us next week for another Moody Church. Our with Dr. Erwin lutes are in the congregation of historic Moody Church in Chicago and