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Do You Love Jesus? - Part 2 of 2

Baptist Bible Hour / Lasserre Bradley, Jr.
The Truth Network Radio
August 11, 2020 12:00 am

Do You Love Jesus? - Part 2 of 2

Baptist Bible Hour / Lasserre Bradley, Jr.

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August 11, 2020 12:00 am

“So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs” (John 21:15).

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Oh, for a thousand tongues to sing my great Redeemer's praise, the glory's of my God and King, the triumphs of his grace.

This is Lisera Bradley, Jr., welcoming you to another broadcast of the Baptist Bible Hour. During this time of the pandemic, we've heard about many, many different kinds of problems, and not quite as much said about the drug problem as we have previously. So many other things have required attention.

But we have also noted that in many areas the problem of drug addiction has increased and not diminished. So I would like once again to offer our booklet entitled, There is Hope, Hope of Freedom from Addictions, Hope through Jesus Christ. If you know someone who is struggling with an addiction, with a drug problem, and you would like to pass along a book that speaks of the hope that we have in our Savior Jesus Christ, just request that when writing us.

The title is, There is Hope. Our address is the Baptist Bible Hour, Box 17037, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. Now we continue today with the message, Do You Love Jesus, from John chapter 21, verses 15 through 17. Jesus questioned Peter three times, and it said on that third time Peter was grieved. I don't think that indicates that he was irritated. He knew that Jesus had every right to probe deeply into his heart and to bring about a painful experience if needs be, so that Peter was adequately convinced that what he had done was terribly wrong.

He was genuinely grieved over it. He was truly in a repentant spirit, and so as Jesus asked these questions three times, no doubt it brought back in vivid memory the experience that night when he denied his Lord. In Luke chapter 22, the 60th verse, let's get a little more of that. So we just read what took place at this time of his denial. We'll start with verse 56. Luke chapter 22, verse 56. But a certain maid beheld him as he sat by the fire and earnestly looked upon him and said, This man was also with him, that is with Jesus. And he denied him saying, Woman, I know him not.

Now let me just pause there to say this. People sometimes become confused and disturbed over the doctrine of perseverance. They make the assumption that if you believe in that doctrine, you're judgmental, and you're looking on others and determining that if they're not living up to your standard, they're not a child of God.

That is not the case. The doctrine of perseverance is this. Those who are being preserved give evidence of it by the fact that they persevere. Now if you had walked up on this occasion and heard Peter, one of Jesus' followers, saying, I know him not, and later heard him cursing that he knew not the Lord, you wouldn't have said, now if there ever was a child of God, there's one. You'd have had some serious doubts about Brother Peter, which indicates that a child of God can temporarily fall into great sin.

But the evidence that they belong to the Lord is that there is repentance, there is recovery, and so there is perseverance, a continuance on course. After a little while another saw him and said, Thou art also them. And Peter said, Man, I am not.

At about the space of one hour, after another confidently affirmed saying of a truth, this fellow also was with him, for he is a Galilean. And Peter said, Man, I know not what thou sayest. And immediately while he yet spake the cock crew, which Jesus had said, before the cock crows three times, you will have denied me.

Before the cock crows, you will have denied me thrice. And the Lord turned and looked upon Peter, and Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And Peter went out and wept bitterly. No doubt, as Jesus probes deeply into Peter's heart, and asks him three different times, Lovelest thou me?

The memory of that night looms in his mind. Oh, how deeply he hurt. When he had just denied his Lord, Jesus has been arrested. Jesus has been treated like a criminal. Peter had said, Lord, I'll die with you if necessary, but oh, he's not even with the Lord.

He's out at a distance. He's denying he ever knew him. And Jesus looks at him.

That's all they had to do. Look at him. And Peter's heart melted, and he burst into tears. The effect of this love, if you truly love Jesus, it will bring you to repentance. It will bring you to a place of grieving deeply over your sins that have offended him.

Thirdly, we want to look at the proof of this love. Love leads to obedience. A profession without love, claiming to love, saying I love God, I love the Lord, but there is no obedience, is vain.

It's empty. It means nothing. Jesus said in the Gospel of Matthew chapter 15, and verse 8, This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. These people have a form of religion. They say the right things, they say they love God, they say they honor me, but their heart's not there. So just to say, I love Jesus, but you never obey him, that's empty. You might sing enthusiastically at him, there is a name I love to hear, and go on to sing, oh how I love Jesus, oh how I love Jesus.

You may sing it louder than anybody else. But if you're not obeying him, it's all an empty show. Jesus says in John 14, 15, If you love me, keep my commandments.

That's the evidence that you love him. Just a lot of lip service, singing a lot of hymns, to the effect that you love him, mean absolutely nothing if you do not give clear proof of it by your obedience. Love will move you to self-denial. Luke chapter 9 verse 23, And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. Those words of Jesus differ significantly from what's being preached from many pulpits in America today. A man said, if you will follow Jesus, he'll make you wealthy.

I didn't want him and his people to be poor, preach the wealth prosperity doctrine, Jesus never promised that. He said, if you're going to come after me, if you're going to be my follower, you got to deny yourself. You don't idolize yourself.

You don't make all of your plans or goals to be number one. You deny self. You're willing to die to self. Take up your cross daily. The cross is not a part of the jewelry that you wear. Cross is a place to die, dying out to pride, to selfish interests, to fleshly lust, the love for the world, dying out to self.

And whosoever will save his life shall lose it, but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it. True love for Jesus then will move you to self-denial. If you're still in the position of trying to work out a little side route here where you can follow Jesus, but not interfere with the rest of your life, you don't know what loving Jesus is all about. Jesus doesn't come to be added on to a list of other interests in your life.

He comes as not only the Savior of your soul, but the Lord of your life to take over. There was a young lady whose background was of another religion that came forward in our church a number of years ago and professed her faith in Christ. We inquired how her family reacted and it was okay with them.

It wasn't a problem. And then one day a relative came to visit who understood more about Christianity than her parents understood. And he explained to them, do you know that when she confessed Christ and said I'm a Christian, that means she gave up all other gods.

And then they were disturbed. They had no problem if Jesus was going to be added to the list. The idea was the more gods you have, the safer you are.

Don't want to miss giving allegiance to any one of them that might be a help to us. So as long as you just add Jesus on, that's okay. That's not Christianity. To become a follower of Jesus Christ means He takes over. He's the Lord of your life in every detail, in every decision, in every action, in every thought.

He is the Lord of your life. Love leads to service. Jesus said, feed my lambs. In other words, Peter, you may have felt that because you failed, it was all over for you.

You could never be useful again. No place for you in the kingdom. But He gives him a job.

He says, if you love me, you're going to be able to demonstrate it by what I have for you to do. I want you to feed my lambs. I think that would indicate that Jesus wanted Peter to be concerned about the young ones in the fold, the weak ones, the feeble ones. Feed my lambs. It's not just a matter for you to be very knowledgeable, able to discuss some of the deeper doctrines of scripture and lay it out for those who are mature and well-versed.

I want you to feed my lambs. I want you to think about the little children that will be under the sound of your voice when you preach the gospel. I want you to think about those souls that have limited knowledge and they struggle. I want you to think about them. The book of 1 Thessalonians chapter 5 verse 14 says, Now we exhort you brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feeble-minded.

And that term is not used in the sense in which it is commonly regarded today. Talking about those who are weak, those who are struggling, those whose faith may be faltering. Comfort them. Support the weak. Don't despise them. Don't look down on them in self-righteousness. Support them.

Be patient toward all men. Feed the lambs. And notice that Jesus calls them my lambs and my sheep. He didn't say, Peter, they belong to you.

They're mine and I want you to feed them. And that gives a tremendously solemn responsibility to every minister of the gospel. To understand it's not my church, it's not my sheep, it's his. It's his church. It's his sheep. And I think what a responsibility, but what a privilege to be able to stand before God's people. Speak to his little lambs. Speak to his children, his sheep. To feed them. And the word carries a connotation that indicates more than just feeding them, but shepherding them, tending to them, guiding them, leaving them with the right path. What a responsibility. And Peter fulfilled that work.

And later when he wrote his epistle, 1 Peter chapter 5, he is writing to advise other ministers to feed the flock of God. Now I ask the question to you directly. Is there proof of this love in your life? Suppose Jesus put in an appearance here today. He personally came walking down the aisle and then he turned to each of you individually one by one and asked the question, Do you love me? You might reply, well of course, Lord I love you, that's why I'm here at church. Certainly I love you, that's why I sing these hymns that praise you. Is it evidence?

Is it not? Certainly Lord, I love you because I want to put something in the offering box. Yes, I love you. But suppose he asked you three times like he did Peter.

Want to get down to the heart of the matter. Do you love him enough to spend time reading his word? Nowadays with texting and email and all these modern advances, the old experience of writing letters has just about gone out. But when people took more time, you know now in these messages they don't even spell the words, just hint at it and you have to guess what on earth did they mean.

But back in the days when people spelled and wrote and thought about what they were saying, many times there were beautiful love letters that were penned. I remember one time I was on a preaching trip, been away for a while and Emily wrote me a letter. I was sitting on the front row at that church ready to preach that night. And the letter came to somebody's house and I don't know why they didn't wait until after the service but they just walked up during the song service and handed it to me. Well, I couldn't wait. I opened it up and I began to read the letter. And people told me after service, we never saw such a glow on your face as when you read that letter.

It must have been wonderful. I said it was. You love to hear from somebody that you love. Well, if you love Jesus, do you not want to hear from him? If you want to hear what he's got to say, you go to his word.

His words are there. Do you love him enough to spend time in his word? If you love somebody, you want to talk to them. You love to have conversation. Do you love Jesus enough to go to him in prayer?

Not to think of it as a duty that you dread if you haven't fulfilled it and you feel guilty but something you want to do. Do you love him enough to talk to him in prayer? Do you love him enough to talk about him? If you really love somebody, you find a joy in talking about them. Your parents know how it is. Grandparents know how it is. You've got a little child that's smart and beautiful and doing marvelous things that you sure know the child ever matched up to this and you want to tell everybody.

Let me tell you what this little child is. You like to talk about those that you love. Do you love Jesus enough to talk about him?

Did you talk to anybody about him this week? Did you talk even among other believers about what Jesus means to you? Did you have opportunity to talk about him to somebody who wasn't a believer but you didn't do it because you didn't love him enough to do it?

Because you were fearful that you might be rejected. Do you love him enough to teach your children about him? You want to teach some things that are important. What is more important than knowing about Jesus? Do you love your children enough to take time, mothers, fathers, to tell them about Jesus?

Do you love him enough to be a generous giver? God loves a cheerful giver. The woman came with the alabaster box of ointment and broke it and anointed Jesus and wept at his feet. And Judas among others said this is a waste.

We should have taken that and sold it and given the money to the poor. Jesus did not condemn her. Any show of affection and love for Jesus is acceptable. God has blessed you materially. Do you have a hard time turning loose of a portion of it to give to his cause or do you do it with joy? Do you love him enough to be a generous giver?

Do you love him enough to forgive? Jesus sat at meat in the house of a Pharisee. A woman comes in from the street, falls down at his feet, begins to weep. She sees herself as a sinner. The self-righteous Pharisee is sitting there thinking if this man was a prophet he wouldn't allow this wretch to touch him. Jesus knows what Simon is thinking. He says this woman loves much because she has been forgiven much. Do you understand how much you've been forgiven? Do you understand how great your sin is as an affront to a holy God and to think that he has forgiven you every sin on the basis of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ? How can you fail to forgive other people? Be kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another even as God for Christ's sake has forgiven you. I dare say that there's somebody here today, one maybe several, that are holding things, issues that trouble you, but you will not forgive.

You say, Pritchett, you don't understand I've been hurt so deeply. No matter how deeply you've been hurt it doesn't compare to what your sin against God is. When you have been forgiven completely by his grace and mercy, how can you resist and be hesitant to forgive anybody else?

Anybody here today harboring bitterness, resentment? Do you love Jesus enough to turn loose of it? Do you love him enough to go to him in confession and admit, Lord, I've been wrong?

Forgive me. Do you love Jesus enough to commit yourself to be a member of a Bible-believing church? Commit yourself to the responsibility of membership and to be his follower and serve him. Finally, we want to quickly consider the source of this love. God is the source of it. 1st John 4 8 says, God is love. 1st John 4 19 says, we love him because he first loved us. His love is so great it passes our ability to comprehend it. We can talk about it.

We can sing about it. We can hear it preached. We can rejoice to know that God is love and that God loves us.

But look at the words that Paul pens in Ephesians chapter 3 verse 18. That you may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth and the length and the depth and the height and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge that you might be filled with all the fullness of God. The love of Christ passes knowledge. To think that Jesus Christ who was the God-man, the perfect lamb of God, no sin, no fault, no failure, laid down his life for guilty rebels such as we are by nature, suffered the anguish of the father turning his back on him until he had to cry out my God my God why hast thou forsaken me and suffered in those hours what you and I could never have paid for suffering in hell itself forever. We would never have been able to pay for the first sin.

He paid it all. The more we view this love the more our love for him will grow. His love is a blessing of grace. You don't love Jesus just because your heart was more tender and you generated this love.

You love him because he first loved you. You don't deserve that love but what a blessing to think that he loved us. If you love Jesus today it springs from the love that he has for you. And may we grow in that love and love him more.

John Luton who wrote Amazing Grace also penned these words, so much forgiven, so little, so little love, so many mercies, so few returns, such great privileges and a life so sadly below them. Let us pray, Lord help me to love you more. If you've come to love Jesus you love him as the Savior of your soul because you know that without him you're lost and you've embraced him by faith and you've never confessed him.

May you love him enough today to confess him. Let us pray, Lord we come to thee deeply convicted by what we read in this portion of scripture. We pray that you would help us to love thee more. Help us not just to give lip service but to live it out in our life every day that others may see Jesus in us.

We are weak, we're frail, we're apt to stumble and fall as did Peter. But we pray, Lord hold us up. Help us to love thee as we ought. May this church grow in love for Jesus and it be a testimony to others round about to the glory of thy name. Hear us for thy name's sake.

Amen. Hopefully we can all say today that we love Jesus Christ and yet we have to admit with the hymn writer that our love to him is often so cold and faint while his love for us is indeed so great. If you'd like to get this complete message on CD request it when writing us and until we greet you next time this is Lasair Bradley Jr. bidding you goodbye and may God bless you. Praising my savior all the day long perfect submission all is at rest I am my savior and happy and blessed watching and waiting looking above filled with this goodness lost in his love this is my story this is my song praising my savior all day long this is my story this is my song. Praising my savior, praising my savior, praising my savior all the day long.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-25 08:50:35 / 2024-03-25 08:59:26 / 9

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