The Baptist Bible Hour now comes to you under the direction of Elder LeSaire Bradley Jr. O for a thousand tongues to sing, my great Redeemer's praise!
The worries of my God and King, the triumphs of his grace! This is LeSaire Bradley Jr. inviting you to stay tuned for another message of God's sovereign grace. I know you hear me asking each week that our listeners would take time to write us and to be able to help with the support of the program if possible.
And maybe you're one who always thinks, well, somebody will do that, but maybe that somebody ought to be you. If you want the broadcast to continue on your local station, let us hear from you. Our address is Baptist Bible Hour, Box 17037, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. The Lord willing, this coming weekend beginning Friday night, June 9th, Elder Andrew Huffman and I will be in a meeting with Grace Primitive Baptist Church, Pearl, Mississippi, near Jackson, where Elder David Piles is the pastor.
Sunday night of that second weekend, I'm to be with Collierville Primitive Baptist Church, Collierville, Tennessee, where Elder Timothy Guess is the pastor. We continue today with the message, The Gospel for Sinners. The text is from Romans chapter 5, beginning with verse 6. For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die, yet pray adventure for a good man some would even dare to die, but God commendeth his love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more than being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. People don't want to hear about the wrath of God. Somebody says, oh my God is a loving God. He doesn't have wrath. Well the God of the Bible certainly is a God of love.
He identifies himself. God is love, but God in his holiness also has wrath that will be poured out upon the ungodly. And when we come to recognize that, we come to appreciate all the more what it means for Christ to die for sinners and salvation to be by his grace.
It's not a matter of somebody just saying, well yes I feel unworthy. I feel that I am a sinner. No, it's for sure enough sinners. Not just somebody who mouths the right words. Not just somebody who has a few minor flaws. We're talking about some significant sinners here. We're talking about people whose lives were not pure, were not clean.
We're talking about people over a long period of time had a terrible reputation, were known as a sinner. This gospel is not for the honest. Somebody says, well I tell you I may have had some other faults, but one thing about it, I'm a truthful person. I'm honest.
You can depend on me. My word is my bond. But the basis of salvation is not your character, not your superior walk, not your conduct. What would have been the plight of the dying thief when Jesus said, today shalt thou be with me in paradise if honesty was a requirement? This man had been dishonest.
This man had taken that which didn't belong to him. He was dying on the cross because he was this thief. But he had come to understand that the one that was next to him, the man on the cross in the middle, was no thief. He was a perfect man. He was the son of God. He was the Lord and therefore he said, will you remember me when you come into your kingdom?
And Jesus said, this day shalt thou be with me in paradise. All the self-righteous would say, hold up, wait a minute, how can that be? I thought if you were good enough you'd go to heaven. I thought if you did everything right you'd pay for your ticket.
I thought if you were really sincere and zealous you'd make it. Do you mean that here's a thief, a man that's dying for his crime and Jesus says, you're going to be with me in paradise? That's not the way I see it.
Well, I pray your eyes will be open and you'll see it like it is. Because the truth is that salvation is by grace. It's for sinners, for sinners. Well, there's a lot though to be said for being faithful, standing firm, living up to your commitments, oh absolutely.
It's something all of us ought to be concerned about. But this Gospel message is not for the faithful. For Jesus' own disciples, his own followers, those who had been most intimate with him, forsook him and fled. It wasn't just Peter that denied the Lord.
The whole group forsook him. You see, the salvation we're talking about is not based on your faithfulness but on the faithfulness of God. On the basis of an everlasting covenant that is ordered and sure, a covenant between the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. So we see the condition of those for whom Christ died. Not the innocent, not the good, not the obedient, not the pure, not the honest, not the faithful but he died for the ungodly, he died for sinners.
And then the next thing we see in the text is the love of God displayed. Verse 8 of Romans 5 says, But God commended his love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. God loved us. Why were we yet sinners? Christ died for sinners. And that is followed up also in the Ephesians passage to which we've already referred. Ephesians chapter 2, after describing in the first verse that we were dead in sins, describing in verses 2 and 3 that we were walking according to our sinful nature, fulfilling our own desires and lusts. Verse 4 then says, But God, who is rich in mercy for his great love, wherewith he loved us.
What made the difference? Not our action, but God's love. Not our merit, but God's grace.
What turned the point? But God. But God who is rich in mercy. Doesn't have just a small amount of it. Doesn't just dish it out with great reserve.
He's rich in it. For his great love, a marvelous love, an abundant love, an abounding love, wherewith he loved us. God loved us. He made his love manifest. He didn't just talk about it.
He didn't just declare it. He didn't just speak of it in his word, but he revealed it. He displayed it because he gave his son. Romans chapter 8 verse 32, He that spared not his own son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
He's talking about the love of God. God gave his son. We talked recently about the experience of Abraham when he was called of God to go up on the mountain and offer his son Isaac as a sacrifice. You can imagine the emotion that this man experienced thinking about giving his own son that he loved dearly.
Words in the scripture mean something. God has presented to us as being the father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is described as being his only begotten son. God gave his son. Maybe that's hard for us to fathom, but to think about God becoming man and the person of Jesus Christ, God giving his son, giving him to go to the cross, to be made sin for us that we might be made the righteousness of God in him is something beyond our ability to fully perceive. What it meant for this one who was perfect, spotless, no sin, to have our sin put upon him, so that there was a separation between the son of the father and the son cries out, My God, my God, why has thou forsaken me?
Oh, what a display of love. God spared not his son, didn't hold him back, but delivered him up. God orchestrated the whole event because it was his design and purpose that Jesus Christ should go to the cross to redeem his people. Seeing this is so, shall he not freely give us all things, all things that we have need of. The love of God is displayed because he loved us while we were yet sinners, because he gave his son, and because it says he delivered us from wrath. Now this is a point that many have not come to grips with in our thinking today. There's a new interpretation of what God is like right after one man recently who said that the baby boomers are not going to accept the terminology of the past. If you start talking to them about guilt and sin, talking to them about punishment and wrath, they're just not going to tolerate it.
Although these principles may be true, you've got to come up with some new innovative way to get them to accept it, that they might embrace the gospel. My friends, I believe that the terms and words that are given us in scripture were adequate then and are adequate for us today. And the fact is not just terminology, the fact is that man in his own nature, as he likes to develop a God according to his own imagination, does not want to think about a God of wrath. It may be pleasant to think about his love, and his love is wonderful and marvelous and we've already talked about that, but God is also a God of wrath. 1 Thessalonians chapter 1 verse 10. Paul is speaking of what took place when the gospel was preached to these at Thessalonica, saying that you turn from idols to serve the true and living God and to wait for his son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.
Jesus Christ did not die just to make life easier for you, to give you a better, improved life here on this earth. He died to deliver his people from the wrath to come. There is wrath coming. There is a day when the wrath of God will be clearly manifest.
Chapter 5 of the book of 1 Thessalonians says in verse 8, But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and for in helmet the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him. You see, wrath and salvation are put here as two contrasts. God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation. But there are those who will face suffer the wrath of God.
2 Thessalonians chapter 1 verse 7 And to you who are troubled, rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, inflaming fire, taking vengeance on them that know not God and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his power, when he shall come to be glorified in his saints and to be admired in all them that believe, because our testimony among you was believed in that day. Can you imagine the horror of such a day? Due to the fact that you have a sinful nature, it's possible that at some point in your life you could commit a crime that as you look back upon it, you would shake your head in disbelief and say, I can't believe that was me. I can't believe I did that.
How could it happen? And now you stand in a court of law and you hear the judge say guilty and pronounce the sentence. Can you imagine the terrible sinking feeling when you found out I'm going to jail?
Never in your wildest imagination did you ever think that in your life you would have to go to jail. Now that's a terrible scene to envision, is it not? But think of something far worse. Think of that notable day when the Lord comes back. He comes in flaming fire, taking vengeance on them that know not God. He's coming back to be admired in all them that believe, but he's coming back with wrath upon the wicked. Can you imagine anything more horrible than to understand I'm not just appearing in a court of law.
I'm not just hearing a local judge say guilty. I'm hearing the God of heaven declare, you are the recipient of my wrath because you are a sinner, a rebel, ungodly, a violator of my law. Revelation chapter 6 verse 16, And said to the mountains and rocks, fall on us and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb. Oh, you see, I've always thought about the Lamb being slain for sinners, the hope of that thought, the beauty of Jesus Christ being the fulfillment of all the types and shadows of old, the Lamb slain. But here it speaks of the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of his wrath is come and who shall be able to stand? But you see, the love of God is displayed in that he delivered his people from the wrath to come. He died for the ungodly. If you are a sinner saved by his grace, this is good news to you because he says much more than being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
Saved from wrath. The third thing we see in this text is the person and work upon which this salvation rests. This puts the emphasis upon Christ. When we were without strength in due time, Christ died for the ungodly in due time, at the appointed time.
This was something that God had arranged, God had purposed and decreed from before the foundation of the world. It was going to come to pass at the exact time God had designated it. Let's look at Psalm 53, the eleventh verse, it says, He shall see of the prevail of his soul and shall be satisfied by his knowledge.
Shall my righteous servant justify many for he shall bear their iniquities? The prophet knew in advance that Jesus Christ would be satisfied. Not undertaking a work that he could not finish, but gloriously successful. Winning a battle, winning the victory, satisfied because he would secure all of those that were given to him by the father and the covenant of grace. He was coming. All the types, all the shadows, all of the prophetic references of the Old Testament pointing to the coming of the son of God. All fulfilled in the new tell us that Jesus Christ was coming to do a work. Matthew chapter 1 verse 21 says, Thou shall call his name Jesus for he shall save his people from their sins.
That's why he was coming. The angels came singing glory to God in the highest on earth, peace, goodwill toward men. The time had come. Galatians chapter 4 verses 4 and 5 says this, But when the fullness of time was come, God sent forth his son, made of a woman, made under the law.
For what purpose? To redeem them that were under the law that we might receive the adoption of sons when the fullness of time was come. There were times that they attempted to take Jesus, but he said repeatedly, My hour is not yet come.
But when the hour came, at the exact moment Jesus gave himself willingly when they came to take him away, he laid down his life willingly upon the cross. You deserve to die there. You were the sinner. You were the ungodly soul.
You deserve the wrath of God. But Jesus Christ died in the place of sinners. He was the substitute and God's wrath was poured out upon him because the sins of his people were laid upon him and he suffered and he put them away.
He came at the appointed time, at the right time. See, our salvation is all in Christ. Salvation is not a reward for the good, not a reward for good conduct.
Obviously, that's the thinking of many people. I can just do the best I can. Somebody say to me one time, I'll take my chances. Oh, I'm telling you about something better than chance this morning. I'm telling you about something that's sure. I'm telling you about a salvation that's in the person of Jesus Christ. And therefore all saved by him.
But enjoy heaven forever. Second Timothy chapter 1 verse 9 said that he has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began. So it's not according to our works. It's not a reward. It's given to those who are good. It's a gift of free grace. It's not reformation.
It's regeneration. So I said, OK, I see that I've come short. Yes, I've got some things in my past that I'm ashamed of. I've got some things in my life now that need to be straightened out. I'm going to turn over a new leaf.
I'm going to make it better. No, it's not reformation. It's regeneration. It's not you giving your filthy heart to the Lord. It's the Lord by his grace giving you a new heart.
When you're born again, you made a new creature in Christ Jesus. It's not your repentance. So I said, well, is it not in order that men repent? Should not men repent?
Absolutely. The Apostle Paul preached at Mars Hill that God commands all men everywhere to repent. But your repentance is not the basis of your salvation. Titus chapter 3 verse 4 says, But after that, the kindness and love of God, our savior toward man, appeared not by works of righteousness, which we have done, but according to his mercy, he saved us by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost. How did he save us? According to his mercy. According to his mercy. I've known of people who have struggled for years trying to determine if they had adequately repented. It was evident they weren't looking to Christ. They were looking to the quality of their repentance.
They're still working at it. I'm not sure I've adequately grieved. I'm not sure that I've repented like I should have repented. Yes, God grants repentance. And an evidence of his grace is that you're brought to deep conviction of your sin. You're no longer trying to defend yourself, excuse yourself, make an argument that God ought to do something for you because you're worthy. Knowing true repentance, you take God's side of the question. You say like the hymn writer, If thou my soul should send to hell by righteous law, proves it well. If God should catch me off and I should suffer his wrath forever, I could lift no hand in opposition and could not raise any single complaint.
That's what I deserve. In true repentance, you acknowledge then that God should cast you off. In true repentance, you admit I have no righteousness of my own. In true repentance, you turn from your idols to serve the true and living God. But the basis of your salvation is not your repentance. It's Christ. The basis of your salvation is not your tears.
Somebody said, Well, I did have an experience some years ago. I was deeply moved. I wept uncontrollably. But you're not washed by your tears. You're washed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ. Peter talks about the precious blood of Christ.
It's precious because it's of great value. It's by his blood that our sins are washed, made clean by the blood of the Lamb. Somebody says, Well, what about my faith? Should I not believe?
Absolutely. Paul and Silas said to the Philippian jailer, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved. You ought to believe. But I'll tell you, salvation is not based on your believing. It's not based on your faith. Faith itself is the gift of God. But Hebrews chapter 9 verse 26 says, For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world. But now once in the end of the world he hath appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. How did he put sin away?
By his own sacrifice. Verse 28 says, So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many. And unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
Somebody else is constantly examining, looking at their own evidences. You hear, Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of God. Blessed are they that do hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled. You search and you examine and you try to determine, Am I adequately poor? Am I mourning like I ought to mourn?
Am I hungering and thirsting like I ought to thirst? Well, it's a great source of encouragement when we can see some evidence of God's work in our life. The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, when we can see that there is love, when we can see that God has given us peace, when we see that there is meekness of spirit, we take courage in that. But I want to tell you, your salvation is not in your evidence, it's in Christ. You could misread your case. Sometimes there are those that are much too hard on themselves. In spite of the fact that others may see clear evidence in them, they can never see it. No doubt that there are times that we tend to be too easy on ourselves.
We try to make all kinds of excuses for our own flaws and faults. Yes, when God does the work of grace, there's going to be some evidence of it, but salvation is not in the evidence, salvation is in Christ. And then the writer says, seeing what he's done for us by his death, now we're going to be saved by his life.
Isn't that a wonderful thought? He says, considering what all Christ has done for you through his sacrificial death at the cross, now that he is alive, look at the further blessings and deliverances that are going to be yours. Back to Romans 8 verse 34, who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather that is risen again, so he's now alive. This is something that's going to happen now through the life of Christ, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Seeing then what he has done for you by his death, now be encouraged, according to the 10th verse of the 5th chapter, for when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his son. You were an enemy opposed to God, but you were reconciled by his death. Much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. By his death you're reconciled by his life, life in that the grave did not hold him, he came out of the grave, he's seated on the right hand of the majesty on high, for what purpose? He lives, ever lives to make intercession for us.
Oh then the blessings that are yours, because he lives. I ask you the question, do you see yourself as a sinner? The gospel message is good news to you if you do.
You find hope and comfort and courage by it. You see, he came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. As long as someone is offended, as long as someone objects to the idea, well, I just don't like that terminology, I can't see myself as a wretch, I'm no worm, I'm no great sinner. You're not going to be comforted by this gospel. But if you see yourself as a sinner, Lord I know that in myself I have nothing, I have no righteousness to plead, I have no worth, I have no merit, I'm ruined, I'm done for, lost forever without thy grace. This gospel is for you.
They that are whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. He died for the ungodly. Do you believe that? Do you believe on him? John 5 24 says, The one that believes has already passed from death unto life. Are you a believer in the son of God today? Do you rest alone in him because you see that left to yourself there would be no hope?
None whatever. The gospel is good news for sinners. Christ died for the ungodly. The gospel for sinners, those who feel themselves to be righteous and sufficient reject the message, often they're offended by it. But if you're one whose heart has been broken with a sense of sin and unworthiness before God, the message of Jesus Christ and him crucified is good news to you.
And I pray you'll rejoice in it today. Now until next week at this same time, may the Lord richly bless you all. The Baptist Bible Hour has come to you under the direction of Elder LeSaire Bradley Jr. Address all mail to the Baptist Bible Hour, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. That's the Baptist Bible Hour, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. We'll welcome.
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