This broadcaster has 672 podcast archives available on-demand.
Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.
May 3, 2022 4:00 am
You know what's worse than never coming to the Lord's table coming to the Lord's table when you don't deserve to be.
That's works because to do that is to eat and drink unworthily and be guilty of the body and one of the morning and so verse 28 says let a man examine himself have doubts that your salvation is genuine. What should you do what's the first step.
Those are questions you need to be able to answer in their questions that John MacArthur will help you with. In a study he begins today on grace to you because it examine yourself John the lesson were going to hear today comes from one of my favorite sermons that you ever preached, but I think for a lot of listeners it's going to sound unusual because they've been taught that once you said the sinners prayer. There's no point in ever examining the reality of your conversion. So what is your goal behind encouraging our listeners to examine themselves.
Well I'm I'm following the injunction of the apostle Paul to examine yourself to see whether in the faith self-examination should be going on all the time that look if nothing else.
Every time you come to the Lord's table every time you come to a communion service. What does the apostle Paul say your to do your due examine yourself to see if there's any sin there anything standing between you and the Lord and your to confess that and deal with that self-examination for the believer is a way of life. Why, because repentance is a way of life. If if you think you shouldn't examine yourself than you think. You don't need to repent. You think you can just go on blithely through your life and not come to grips with the reality of your sin that's that's totally wrong that you cannot be indifferent to sin. You cannot be indifferent particularly to your own sin and self-examination is critical for us to be honest again. How could you come to the Lord's table without examining yourself. In fact, Paul says if you come to the Lord's table without examining yourself, you could bring judgment on yourself. Self-examination in my thinking correctly the my thinking to the honor of God is my speech purer on my actions right is my worship honoring to the Lord is my giving what it should be the way I work in the world the way I live in the world, my friendships, my relationships, constant self-examination is essential to the life of any and every believer the idea that you would think for a moment that self-examination is some kind of a an act of doubt, some kind of way to discount your confidence in the Lord or express this trust of his salvation is just not acceptable, even when you know your salvation is real even when you're confident of your love for the Lord, and of your salvation because you see the fruit of it in your life, you still need to examine yourself, to be certain that you're a Christian that's where it starts and to maintain that dedication to Christ that is honorable for a believer. Self-examination is essential. With that in mind were going to the series on examine yourself. Don't miss the day. That's right, there are few questions more critical than the one John MacArthur will be exploring in this study. What are the marks of saving faith, make sure you know how to answer that question. Follow along.
Now on, grace to you as John begins his series examine yourself. The Lord's supper. I believe is the most wonderful, the most sacred most unique act of worship. But the blood bought Church of Jesus Christ can ever experience. It is sacred in many way's, it is sacred because it is a sacred memory of the cross, the bread speaks of his body in the cup speaks of his blood, and they point to the cross where his body was crucified in his blood was shed and and so it sacred because of its memory, but more than at the table of the Lord is sacred because it is a present communion with the living Christ. He meets us here the apostle Paul says the cup which we drink and the bread which we break is it not the body and the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. We literally communion with him here. And thirdly, it is sacred. I believe because Jesus said in Luke 2219 and 20. Do this and so it is sacred because it is an act of obedience and obedience is a sacred and holy thing and so the Lord's table is special. I come to the Lord's table as often as I possibly can. And very often in my own life.
I take the most common things in my hand and in my heart, they become symbols of the body and blood of Jesus Christ. Because this is so meaningful to me and yes I think about it are many Christians who rarely or never for long periods of time come to the Lord's table. Even as there are many who are never obedient in baptism. And I guess my approach was always well maybe they're just ignorant. They don't understand the importance of the Lord's table or they don't understand the importance of baptism.
They don't know what it is to make a public testimony, and obedience to the act of baptism.
I don't know what it is to commune with Jesus Christ in the body and to celebrate the cross just ignorant and I guess I told myself to. Maybe they're just disobedient. Maybe they just are acting carnally. I've been thinking lately that if someone has no desire for testimony in baptism and if someone has no fellowship with the Lord's table. Maybe it isn't that they're a weak Christian. Maybe it's that they're not a Christian at all. They may think they are but they're not about you. Are you a Christian say will I'm a Christian. I believe I made a decision for Christ and believe me there are a lot of people who point to the past to verify Christianity or to verify salvation and the Bible never points to the past. The Bible never talks about a decision in the past.
Are you really a Christian say, will I came to Jesus.
I invited Jesus into my life that enough we say something we all know first Corinthians chapter 11 talks about communion and let me just remind you briefly on first Corinthians chapter 11 in verse 27 wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread and drink this cup of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. That's pretty strong adjacent you know what's worse than never coming to the Lord's table coming to the Lord's table when you don't deserve to be there, that's worse because to do that is to eat and drink unworthily and be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord and so verse 28 says let a man examine himself and so let them eat of that bread and drink of that cup. For he that Edith and drink unworthily Edith and drink its judgments to himself.
It's very serious to come to the Lord's table.
It is serious for a believer to come to the Lord's table while entertaining sin in his life is serious for a Christian to come to the Lord's table will where he does not repent of everything and desire above all things, righteousness and holiness in turning from any known sin serious.
What is even more serious is to come to the Lord's table and drink unworthily because you're not a Christian at all.
Paul called for an examination in another passage and I want you to notice. This is the last chapter of second Corinthians chapter 13 in verse five I want you to know what it says.
Second Corinthians 13 five just the first sentence examine yourselves whether you are in the faith, prudence is what he said prove yourselves you say to someone, are your Christian yes what you base that on well so many years ago I made a decision that means nothing. The Bible never verifies anybody's salvation on the basis of the past is always on the basis of the present and if you don't have the evident proof of real salvation in your life now is a very real possibility or not a Christian at all. No matter what happened in the past so examine yourself to see whether you're in the faith prove yourself say John. How do I do that cuddling over Millie Christian believe maybe even been baptized.
I go to church. I think I'm a Christian look with me at Matthew chapter 5 and let's find out when Jesus arrived on the scene. The Jews had already decided what right living was all about. They had already built their own code. They'd already developed their own system and they had a pretty cut and dried pretty well laid out that this was what it was to be holy and it was all external was all self-righteousness and works. And Jesus came and shattered that thing and he said I want to give you a new standard for living. I want to give you a new criteria by which you evaluate whether redeemed or not I want to tell you how a citizen of the kingdom really… You want to prove yourself. Here is the proof you take your life and let the spirit of God. Compare it with the facts of the sermon on the Mount, and the result will be an examination and the end result will be whether you? Here is the standard and the key to it all is one word.
Now watch is the word righteousness. That's the key.
Jesus is saying in the sermon on the map. If you are a child of the King. If you are really converted. If you really belong to God. If you really been redeemed, the characteristic of your life will be righteousness, and there are a lot of people who claim to be Christians and you look a long time to find any righteousness in their lives. Somebody said to me last week.
There's a lady in our church who is says she's a Christian and ever since she's been a Christian. She has been living with a man who is not her husband and first Corinthians 6 says fornicators do not inherit the kingdom of heaven. Why, because that is a constant state of un-righteousness and conversion is characterized by righteousness.
Look at it in verse 20. This is the key verse to the whole sermon chapter 5 verse 20 Jesus says, I say unto you, except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven was they went to the temple every day. They paid tides they fasted, they prayed they were religious freaks, if you will, and he says I don't care about all that unless your righteousness. This is a minimum requirement exceeds that you will in no case enter my kingdom is seen. Righteousness is the cynical, not righteousness is the issue righteousness is that what sets us apart is converted in righteousness is simply a long word for living right living under God's standards. Living by God's definition in second Timothy chapter 2 in verse 19 it says the Lord knows them that are his, and who are they, they are those that name. The name of Christ and depart from iniquity and Titus chapter 1 in verse 16 he says certain ones profess that they know God, but in works they deny him because they are abominable, and disobedient. In other words, the profession means nothing unless there is obedience there. Unless there is righteousness unless there is holiness unless there is a departing from iniquity. God has every right to expect that neither the fella say the other day and he was preaching and he said isn't it wonderful that you can come to Jesus Christ and you don't have to change anything on the inside or the outside that's a lie right out of hell. There better be a transformation in second Corinthians 517 it's well summed up if any man be in Christ he is a what new creation old things passed away and all things have become new. First John chapter 1 verse nine says Christians are constantly confessing their sin, being righteous in that sense, practical righteousness does not mean that you never send means you deal with it when you do you confess and you turn in front of the repent of and you despise and you hate it you don't love it, it means a chapter 2 John says if you really love me you'll keep my commandments, and that by this we know that we know him. When we do what he commands us further in chapter 2, he says a true believer will be one who will love his brother. He that hates his brothers in darkness, even till now further on.
He says if any man loves the world, the love of the father is not in him and James put it this way, don't you know that friendship with the world is enmity against God. You adulterers and adulteresses you can't be the friend of the world, and the friend of God.
Further on in chapter 3 says he that is born of God does not commit continue to commit sin.
He can't because a new seed is anybody cannot continue to commit sin. What am I saying I'm saying this God says if you're really saved LB righteousness. There will be holiness there will be a whole new approach to life. You will have seen, yes, but you will you will see a decreasing frequency of sin and when sin appears, you will despise it and you will hate it.
As Paul in Romans seven dead and you will confess it and you will turn from it and you will repent of it and you will hunger and you will thirst for that which is right and you will obey and you will love your brother and you will hate the evil system of the world.
That's the way it is.
If you really say you can't say well I'm a Christian and just go right on waltzing down the same old path you been on prove it.
You say you're a Christian prove I guess maybe I'm not content anymore with just saying if you claim to be a Christian you must be in if you made a decision somewhere at a meeting or conference are you walking I'll you wanted an inquiry room or somebody took you through a little book or whatever, whatever, you're okay.
I don't think that that's ever the biblical criteria for salvation. The biblical criteria for salvation is right now. What is your life like right now, say one of the standards was look at Matthew 5 to 7. I want you to see the criteria Jesus sits down and teaches us the principles of living in his kingdom.
And here's where it starts. Blessed are the poor in spirit.
Verse three for theirs is the kingdom of heaven, and the emphatic Greek is indicated here, there is only theirs alone. Nobody else put them in other words, the only people who ever enter the kingdom of those were broken in their spirit.
Those who face their spiritual bankruptcy. Those who see themselves as sinners. Those who know inside that they can bring nothing to God. They are poverty-stricken in terms of their own spirit. They have nothing on which they can count they have no hope for themselves poor in spirit, and the result is in verse four, they mourn and again emphatically and only they shall be comforted. The only people who ever receive salvation. He says the only people ever come into his kingdom are people who are broken over their sin and who mourn over their sin and then in verse five.
They are people who are crushed into meekness. They alone inherit the earth.
They alone are kingdom citizens and the upshot of all of that when you're broken in spirit mournful and crushed to meekness is verse six, you will hunger and thirst after righteousness and only they will be for was if you didn't come to Jesus Christ broken over your sick. If you haven't come to Jesus Christ literally shattered to the very depths of your being over your sinful. If you haven't mourned over your sinfulness if you don't, hunger and thirst after righteousness more than anything else. There is a good probability that you're not even a Christian. That's the criteria our Lord gets first of all, he says there will be the proper entrance into the kingdom.
That's where he begins a sermon on a map, a kingdom citizen can be determined by his own selflessness, his own self despising his own sense of inadequacy in bankruptcy and nothingness. A lot of people come to Jesus because they think you like to get in on what they have. We had let that weight, it would be great if such a such a big famous thing became a Christian because Bullock doesn't need that makes you think he think he needs their ability.
In addition to his power, sir, if you don't come to Jesus on his terms and you don't come at all.
In his terms.
Our brokenness morning meekness and hunger and thirst for righteousness and who are these citizens of the kingdom. Verse seven. They are merciful they are pure in heart, their peacemakers, they are persecuted they are reviled nor know some if you come to to Christ, broken, contrite morning hungering and thirsting after righteousness by the vets only wake up. I believe anybody's ever Christian who doesn't repent of sin you may have made a decision years ago that wasn't your salvation of it that involved this and years later maybe you came back to the Lord broken over your sin. That's the moment it became real. That's the moment you enter the kingdom and you live that way the rest of your life. Loving righteousness and hating sin. One of the characteristics of the Christian is what he says he despises that thing he hates not what he wants.
It's the sin that is intimate.
Does that hates when you come on those terms. Lord makes you merciful, and he makes you pure in heart, and a peacemaker and you try to live like that in the world.
And they'll never be able to stand. So what happens in verse 10, you get persecuted verse 11 to get reviled get all kinds of things set against you falsely, but that's all right be happy.
Why because your kingdom citizen of the first thing I want you to see them is if you're really a Christian you come on these terms morning over sin. A second thing about examiners. If you're Christian. Not only will the entrance to the kingdom be on this condition but your testimony will be different to. That's when he goes into in verse 13. You're the salt of the earth. And in verse 14.
You're the light of the world. Now someone will say if you're really a Christian, your testimony will be clearly decisively and easily distinguishable from the rest of the world.
That's what he said you see the world is like decaying meat, its routing and you know so as a preservative and we're here in the world to preserve the decadence and the destruction of the world. That's why the tribulation is so horrible when the church is God, the salt is out.
We are here to preserve this thing and we are distinguished from the world we are preserving agency in the midst of a decadent decaying civilization. We are to be a light set on a hill and we are to be salt that has its savor. In other words you say not only if you're Christian you come in the right way but you're going to have a testimony that is easily and clearly distinguishable from the rest of the world about your test is very evident to everybody around you that your different or you do everybody else are you right in the flow of life with everybody else when you became a Christian to change things about your life.
If it didn't, and it didn't happen didn't happen.
Our Lord goes further. This is another thing will characterize one as a child of the kingdom is obedience. Verse 17 you think I came to destroy the law, you think I came to set aside the prophets know to fulfill it. In fact, not one jot or one tittle shall ever pass from this law and I say to you whoever therefore shall break one of the least commandments, and shall teach men so we should be called the least in the kingdom of heaven. But whosoever shall do and teach them the same should be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
And then he goes on to say your righteousness better exceed that of the scribes and the first point is this your truly saved will be obedient to be obedient to be acts of obedience. The law of God will be something you long for. Again, Romans seven Paul long to do the law of God, he hunger to do the law of God. He delighted in the law of God. The law of God. Even though Cindy was always tugging at so examiners I really save that you come in morning over your Cindy to come in broken over your evil heart. Examine yourself. Are you clearly distinguishable from the rest of the world examine yourself. Are you obeying God is the great hunger of your heart to do that which is his will, goes further if you've really been converted to think different. That's right, he talks about right thinking. In verse 21 and following see the Jews would do the outside stuff they just couldn't handle the inner thing and so the Lord says them you heard shouldn't kill whoever with Joe would be in danger of judgment places I want to go a step further and take it inside so you shouldn't even have bad thoughts in your heart to get some.
In other words, a child of my kingdom is not somebody was a non-runner somebody you inside his heart doesn't even desire to hurt anybody and he pushes the whole thing inside really a child of the kingdom you're going to have different heart. Ezekiel 36 the Lord says when you become redeemed. He takes out the stony heart. The heart of of abstinence and he puts in a heart of flesh and new heart.
And further, he says in verse 27, you heard it said, you should not commit adultery but let me take it inside. You shouldn't even want to. You shouldn't even look at anybody that we should even think that thought in other words, a citizen of the kingdom is different when somebody says that while I'm a Christian.
I just have problems in that area and they continue to be the dollar will continue to be a fornicator, or continue to be homosexual or continuing some kind of thing like that.
I always go to first grade insects and say those kind of people do not inherit the kingdom of heaven. You didn't come to Christ on his terms.
You came on yours and they don't make it until your broken and shattered over those things until you weep yourself to tears and crawled into his kingdom morning for righteousness will never know what's in redemption. This is grace to you with John MacArthur. Thanks for being with us today.
John looked at the marks of genuine salvation, meekness, brokenness over sin and a hunger and thirst for righteousness, the title of John's current study is examine yourself and our friend, to cultivate that hunger and thirst for righteousness that John talked about the day you are going to need a steady diet of God's word and 1 Practical Way to encourage that constant feeding on biblical truth is to use the MacArthur daily Bible. It makes it easy to read through the Bible in a year you can order your copy today. Call toll-free 855 grace or go to our website Jide TY.org each day.
The MacArthur daily Bible gives you a portion of Scripture to read from the Old Testament, the New Testament, Psalms in the Proverbs. It also includes notes from John to help you understand what you're reading again to order the daily Bible, call 855 grace or go to our website Jide TY.and friend wherever you're listening from today know that you're not alone. This broadcast is being heard in almost every major city around the nation, people are tuning into grace to you, listening, learning and growing. This a very personal ministry you help sustain when you give to express your support right to grace to you. Box 4000 panorama city, CA 91412 or you can call our toll-free number 855 grace can even donate online at Jide TY.thanks for helping us reach communities around the world with truth, it changes lives now for John MacArthur and the entire grace to you. Staff I'm Phil Johnson encouraging you to join us tomorrow when John continues his series examine yourself with another 30 minutes of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on grace