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The Incompatibility Of The Gospel, Part 1

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt
The Truth Network Radio
June 7, 2021 8:00 am

The Incompatibility Of The Gospel, Part 1

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt

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June 7, 2021 8:00 am

The incompatibility of the gospel.

Matt Slick Live!
Matt Slick
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Today on Fellowship in the Word, Pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. Now watch this, verse seven. And when you are praying, please do not use meaningless repetition. That's what the Gentiles do. And then Jesus says, when you're in public, make your prayers short and sweet.

And so he says, please do not use meaningless repetition. Pray this way. Our Father who art in heaven. And what did we do?

2000 years ago. Our Father who art in heaven. This is how Jesus taught us to pray.

Are you kidding? He said don't pray repetitious prayers. We say, well, let's repeat that one then. That's the church. That's how incurably religious we are.

Let's just pray it. Thank you for joining us today on this edition of Fellowship in the Word with Pastor Bill Gebhardt. Fellowship in the Word is the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible Church located in Metairie, Louisiana.

Let's join Pastor Bill Gebhardt now as once again he shows us how God's Word meets our world. The word is compatibility. Webster says that the definition of compatibility is a device or a system designed to be used with another device or system without modification.

That's the key without any modification. Things are compatible. There are all kinds of books written on the compatibility in marriage issues and they show all these factors about whether or not you're compatible with your spouse. And when I do premarital counseling, we often go over this idea of compatibility. It makes sense, but the opposite of compatibility is incompatibility.

All right. And sometimes that even occurs in our marriages. And the point is, some things just don't work together at all, no matter how you try. They they will not work together.

That's what I want to talk about this morning. Incompatibility. I want you to understand this.

It has far reaching implications. Let me say it as clearly as I can. Jesus Christ and his gospel are incompatible with any religious system. Any religious system in the world. It's not compatible with all of the great world religions. It's not compatible with the cults like Mormonism or Jehovah's Witnesses. It's not compatible with that. It's not compatible with religious Christendom, sacramentalism.

It's not compatible with any of that. And that's not my words. That's the words of Jesus Christ. I want you to open your Bibles to Luke Chapter five. Luke Chapter five. And the text and where we're going is verse twenty seven. But I want to give you some context.

It's a very important thing. Jesus is in Galilee and he's been doing his ministry. And it's an interesting thing that when you find out that all of a sudden everybody became very interested in Jesus Christ. As a matter of fact, it says in verse 17, one day he was teaching and there were some Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting there who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem.

How many is that? Every single village, Jerusalem, Judea, Galilee, all the Pharisees came. The reason this place is so crowded, it's crowded with the religious crowd. It's crowded with the Pharisees and the scribes. And they're there to debate Jesus.

And that's the context of a very famous story that you're probably very much aware of. It says in some men were carrying on a better man who was paralyzed and they were trying to bring him in and to set him in front of Jesus, but not finding any way to bring him in because of the crowd. They went up on the roof and they let him down through the tiles with a stretcher in the middle of the crowd right in front of Jesus.

I can still remember my parents had a pictorial kind of Bible when I was a little kid, and I can still remember them up on the roof with this long lines hanging this man down in front of Jesus. What's interesting is Jesus doesn't deal with the healing first because Jesus wants to speak to the crowd. He wants to speak to all these Pharisees, all these scribes, all these religious people. He wants to speak to them.

And so here's the first thing he says. He said, seeing their faith, he said, friend, your sins are forgiven you. Now, he knew to the Pharisees them are fighting words. You see, your sins are forgiven you. And the scribes and Pharisees began to reason. They said, Who is this man who blasphemes? Who can forgive sins but God alone?

Really interesting. They're right about that, by the way. They're just wrong about Jesus. And Jesus, aware of their reasoning, said, Why are you reasoning in your hearts? Which is easier to say your sins be forgiven you or to get up and walk? He said, but so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on Earth to forgive sins. He said to the paralytic, I say to you, get up, pick up your stretcher and go home. Tremendous miracle by Christ. Verse 26 says they were all struck with astonishment and began glorifying God when they were filled with fear.

And they said, We've seen remarkable things today for Jesus. This is the opportunity he wants. You see, he wants to start this dialogue with the scribes and the Pharisees. He wants to begin to talk to the religious element of the day. And what he wants to say to him in these next verses is real simple.

My myself, the person of Jesus and my gospel are not compatible with any religion. That's what he's going to say. Now, watch how it develops. It says after that, he went out and he noticed a tax collector named Levi sitting at a tax booth. This is a tax collector. Now, this isn't the IRS. OK, when you complain about the IRS, you should understand biblical taxes and you wouldn't complain anymore at all. He is a tax collector.

The word is used there, the word publican or town. It's a generalized word, but he's a tax collector. Tax collectors are crooks and traders of the worst kind. There is nobody in Israel that people hate more than tax collectors.

Now, the reason is because of the system of taxes. Rome occupied their territory. Rome demanded certain taxes be sent to Rome. And what they would do is they would set up sort of a puppet king like Herod Antipas, who was king of Galilee. And they would tell Herod Antipas, this is how much money you have to send to Rome every year. And they would pick an amount. Now, Herod Antipas, then what he would do is he would assemble, he would sell franchises to anybody in his who wants to collect taxes for him.

Now, in order to buy a franchise from Herod Antipas, you have to slip him money. Like under the table, a lot like business is done today. You slip him money under the table and then you can begin to collect taxes.

Now, what's interesting about that from from that point of view is, is that these are the most hated people in the nation of Israel. And what ends up happening is that they began to fix taxes. They had fixed taxes, poll taxes, duty taxes, goods taxes, produce taxes, crop taxes, fruit taxes, wine taxes. They even taxed how many axles you had on your cart. If you had two axles, you had to pay more money in taxes. According to the Talmud, the Jewish writing, there were two kinds of tax gatherers, two different collectors.

The one group was called the Gabai. They're big time operators. They have all kinds of tax collectors under them. They could have dozens and dozens of tax collectors.

They're the big time operators. Zacchaeus is a Gabai. Zacchaeus is a chief tax collector.

Jacchaeus, the wee little man, was a man with an enormous amount of wealth. And then there's the second group. And the second group is called, the second group is called the mokas. And the mokas are divided into two groups. There are bigger mokas and smaller mokas. The bigger mokas has a few people that work for him and help him collect taxes.

And then there's the small mokas. And he's a tax collector who just collects himself. Matthew, who is called Levi with the two names. Matthew is a small time mokas. And you say, well, how do you know he's small time?

Because it says so. It says in verse 27, after he went out and noticed a tax collector named Levi sitting at a tax booth. He's right there.

He doesn't have someone sitting there for him. This is his tax booth. Now, what's interesting about this story, here he is as hated a person as exists in the nation. Here is a man who had sold his birthright. To tell you what the Jews thought of a tax collector, a tax collector was not allowed to go in a Jewish synagogue. He was not allowed to worship God.

That's how much they hated tax collectors. And Jesus walks up to him and this is all he says. Follow me. That's it. Just says, follow me.

What an interesting thing to say to a tax collector. But please understand the Bible in the New Testament makes it clear. Jesus knew men's heart. Jesus never walked up and said, follow me to someone. He didn't know their heart already.

He knows his heart. And he just says, follow me. Now, this is a tax collector. And you say, you mean he's going to make a tax collector a follower?

Now, much more. He's going to make a tax collector an apostle. The words he uses with the tax collectors, the same words he uses with John and Peter and James as fishermen. Remember, they were when mending their nets, he said, follow me. They dropped their nets and followed him. And so what you see is Jesus says, follow me. And it says he left everything behind and he got up and he began to follow him.

That aorist tense means that it happened immediately. Wow. This is perplexing. More to the religious group than anyone else.

Now, notice what happens. Levi gave a big reception for him in his house. And there was a great crowd of tax collectors and others who were reclining at the table with them.

There's a party. Matthew wants to expose all of his friends to the Savior. Isn't that exactly what happens to you and I when we come to Christ?

It should. Don't you want to expose your friends to the gospel and the person of Christ? And Matthew does it. Now, understand this party, the kind of people that were at the party. I don't think any of you would be at the party. Now, I'm going on a limb here, but good, decent folk would never be at this party. This is a party of tax collectors, prostitutes. This is the riffraff of their society.

These are the lowest rung people in their society. And Matthew's having a big party and Jesus is there. Jesus is there. And apparently it lasts quite a long period of time because it says they were reclining with them.

So this could have been several hours. Matthew just wants to expose Jesus to all of his friends. Religious people don't like that very much.

It says the Pharisees and their scribes began grumbling at his disciples and they said, why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners? We're upstanding people. We're church going people. You see, we're the better people in society.

Why would you why would you ever go and be with a bunch of tax collectors? Jesus, of course, overhears it. He's orchestrated it all till now. And Jesus answered and said this. It's not those who are well who need a physician, but those who are sick.

Now, please understand something. Jesus is not inferring that the scribes and Pharisees are well. This is called sarcasm. OK, Jesus is being sarcastic. The scribes and Pharisees know exactly what he's saying, but he says, look, when you call a doctor, you don't call a doctor. And he comes and you say, hey, I just want to get on film great today. You call a doctor because you're sick. That's the whole point. And Jesus says, that's my analogy.

Know what she goes on. He says, I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. I have not come to call righteous people. Now, do you think Jesus believed they were righteous? Not at all. Did they believe they were righteous?

Yes. Religious people always do. You see, they believe they were righteous people and they understood what Jesus was saying. And they hated him for it. They just hated him.

This is just the beginning of the hatred. They hate him all the way through the rest of his ministry. That's where Jesus, near the end of his ministry, starts the woe unto you scribes, Pharisees, hypocrites.

He goes right after them. They hate him so much that they make sure he's crucified. That's the hatred because Jesus is inferring to good, righteous, religious people that they're sinners. They're just sinners. And from his point of view, they're no different than tax collectors. They're all the same.

Paul backed that up. Remember, all sin and fall short of the glory of God. There's none righteous, not even one. You see, that's the point that Jesus is making. And of course, that's drawing a line in the sand to these kind of people.

And they're very upset with them. And so immediately, what you see people do when Jesus points out your sin, so often what you want to do is change the subject. And in their case, they want to get onto a religious subject. You see, I want to talk about some religious thing here. This is important to me.

So here's what they bring up. They said to him, the disciples of John often fast and offer prayers. And it says the disciples of the Pharisees also do the same, but yours, they just eat and drink. It's kind of funny, isn't it, when you think about it and go, wait, wait, wait, our disciples are better than yours. Our disciples, they fast and they pray. Your disciples don't do any of that stuff. Well, this is exactly what I believe Jesus wanted them to say. He wants to expose this whole idea that their religion is not compatible with him. It's interesting here because Jesus then responds and said to them, you cannot make the attendance of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with him, can you?

That's an interesting statement. You see, as religious people always do, they set up externals. And they measure your religion by how faithful you are to their externals, whatever they are.

These are the things you need to do. And if you do these things well enough, then God will be so impressed that he'll be willing to have a relationship with you because of the good things you've done. And so they took prayer and fasting and they made it a religious external. This the Pharisees taught and they had taught for a couple hundred years. You need to fast two days a week. You need to fast on Monday and Thursday. You must fast on Monday and Thursday if you're a righteous person. And so every Monday and Thursday, they would fast.

This is the way they did it. Whenever they would pray, they go out in public, stand on the street corner and then pray their prayers real loud and real long so everyone could hear them. Because that's what good religious people do so that other people can see what they're doing. Jesus had a little bit different perspective of this, to say the least. Jesus decides to do something else with it. Turn with me to Matthew Chapter six. Matthew Chapter six. Now, you may have wondered how come John the Baptist disciples are also fasting and praying? Please understand this. A lot of John the Baptist disciples didn't know much about Jesus. Some people when Jesus, remember Jesus was baptized by John and John said, Behold, the Lamb of God, it takes away the sins of the world.

If you were there that day, you would know that. John right now is nowhere to be found. He's in prison. His voice is still.

He's now in prison waiting to be beheaded. So many of his disciples, these were Jews who went and got baptized by John, and they're all excited that Messiah is coming. They're not sure yet even who Jesus is, but they're going to do the good religious things that they're taught by Judaism by the scribes and Pharisees. The best example I can think of this in Acts Chapter 19 in a missionary journey, they run into some guys all the way in Greece. And when they run into them, they say to him, have you received the Holy Spirit? And the guys, I love the response. We never even heard of the Holy Spirit.

We don't even know what you're talking about. So they said, wait, they said, in what baptism were you baptized? And they said, John's. They had come probably during a Passover or something, got baptized by John and then went back to Greece. They didn't know anything about Jesus. Remember, there's no media. They're not writing. You don't listen on the radio and hear about Jesus, watch them on TV, text about Jesus.

Nothing's going on like that. They didn't know who Jesus was. And so they end up receiving Christ way later, all the way in Acts 19. So they're practicing religion.

Well, when you get that Matthew six, the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus wants to speak and notice how he starts out. He said, beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them. That's Jesus' definition of religion. You want to know what his definition of religion is?

There it is. Practice your righteousness before men so they can see what you're doing, whatever it is. He said, beware of that. He said, he said, otherwise, you'll have no reward with your fathers in heaven. God says, look, religion doesn't work like that. True religion doesn't work like that. It's not to be noticed by people. Jesus says, so when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets so that they may be honored by men.

Isn't that interesting? Let's help the poor. I've got $100 here to help the poor. I got 100 bucks right here. I'm giving it to the poor.

I want you to see the poor are going to get this. We'd never do that, would we? I mean, someone makes a donation and they put his name on a window or a pew.

We'd never do that, though. You see, you don't do this to be noticed by men. That's what Jesus says. Then he says in verse five, and when you pray, you're not to be like the hypocrites.

They love to stand and pray in the synagogues on the street corners so they may be seen by men. I said, don't do that. He said, I said in verse six, but you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close the door and pray to your fathers in secret and your father who sees in secret will reward you. And now watch this verse seven. And when you are praying, please do not use meaningless repetition. That's what the Gentiles do. And then Jesus says, when you're in public, make your prayers short and sweet.

And so he says, please do not use meaningless repetition. Pray this way. Our father, who art in heaven. And what do we do?

2000 years of it. Our father, who art in heaven. This is how Jesus taught us to pray.

Are you kidding? He said, don't pray repetitious prayers. We say, well, let's repeat that one then. That's the church. That's how incurably religious we are. Let's just pray it.

I mean, in some of the disciplines, think about this. It's amazing. In order to do penance for your sin, they make you say 27 our fathers. Say it over and over and over again, and then your sins covered. Really? How would anybody possibly believe that?

But he's not done. He says in verse 16, whenever you fast, he said, do not put on a gloomy face as the hypocrites do, for they neglect their appearance so that they will be noticed by men when they are fasting. Truly, I say to you, they have the reward in full. The Pharisees were known on Mondays and Thursdays to get some charcoal and put it on their cheeks and round their eyes.

Then probably get their worst clothes and then walk around sort of like this. How are you doing? OK, I'm fasting.

Oh, you're a real godly man. Jesus is very upset by that. This is ridiculous. It's like you don't even understand what a fast is about. If you think of all the fasts of the Old Testament, there are many. Day fast, several days fast, weeks fast, 40 day fast, a lot of fast. Guess how many fast in the Old Testament are commanded by God for us? One. In Leviticus, the Day of Atonement, the day Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, the nation is to fast.

Why? We are fasting about what? Our sin.

Remember that they're going to carry away our sin for another year. Fasting in the Old Testament is always linked to grieving and mourning. When you're grieving and mourning, the whole idea of a fast, by the way, and America's culture is a little different. Look, you want to fast for health reasons. Go ahead.

But please don't try to combine health reasons with spiritual reasons. The fast of the Bible has nothing to do with how healthy it is for you to fast. You want to fast? Go ahead. You want to fast for your health?

Go ahead. But don't make it like it's spiritual because you're fasting. That's as bad as what the religious people are doing. You fast because the circumstances of your life are so grievous, so burdensome, so heavy that you don't want to be distracted about with anything except prayer to God. You don't want to eat. Have someone you love very, very much fighting for their life and intensive care, and someone's not going to walk up to you and say, Hey, you want to go have dinner? You're not going, are you? No one does.

Why? I'm focused on one thing here, the life of this person. That's what fasting is. That's what fasting is supposed to be. It's not magical. It's not mystical. It's none of those things. It's a preoccupation with God without distraction.

That's what he says you have to do. You've been listening to Pastor Bill Gebhardt on the Radio Ministry of Fellowship in the Word. If you ever miss one of our broadcasts, or maybe you would just like to listen to the message one more time, remember that you can go to a great website called That's, and you can listen to Fellowship in the Word online.

At that website, you will find not only today's broadcast, but also many of our previous audio programs as well. At Fellowship in the Word, we are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible. We ask all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help this radio ministry continue its broadcast on this radio station by supporting us monthly or with just a one-time gift. Support for our ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word 4600 Clearview Parkway, Metairie, Louisiana 7006. If you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format, that is as a sermon that Pastor Bill delivered during a Sunday morning service at Fellowship Bible Church, visit our website, That's F-B-C-N-O-L-A dot O-R-G. At our website, you will find hundreds of Pastor Bill's sermons. You can browse through our sermon archives to find the sermon series you are looking for, or you can search by title. Once you find the message you are looking for, you can listen online, or if you prefer, you can download the sermon and listen at your own convenience. And remember, you can do all of this absolutely free of charge. Once again, our website is For Pastor Bill Gebhardt, I'm Jason Gebhardt, thanking you for listening to Fellowship in the Word.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-11-08 07:31:11 / 2023-11-08 07:41:30 / 10

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