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November 19, 2021 3:00 am
People think what's happening in the church today in this area of divorce and the breakup of marriage and infidelity in all of this is based simply on this one will not walk in love as God defined that kind of confusion relatively minor. But if you're confused about what love is, that can take you down a road with serious consequences, and in fact the most serious consequence of all eternal separation from God's love. Consider that point today on grace to you as John MacArthur answers the question, what does it mean to love the right way. God's way. It's part of his study titled the portrait of a new life and out to pick up where he left off yesterday. Here's John. Ephesians chapter 5 were looking at verses one through seven. Ephesians 5 verses one through seven. Let me read them to you as a setting for our message, the therefore followers of God, as dear children and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savor. But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becoming saints. Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not fitting but rather giving of thanks for this.
You know that no fornicator nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words, for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the sons of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them. This is a tremendously potent passage and it's very important for us today. Let's look at Ephesians 5, verse three and four. Specifically, but fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you has become a saint. Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not fitting but rather giving of thanks. If God's love and the love of God's children is self-sacrificing, forgiving and unconditional. Then be sure that Satan will pervert that and the love of the world will be selfish, self-centered, unforgiving, and condition on what it gains not what it gives. That's the point. So when the world says love isn't using God's definition, it means desire self pleasure last while not denying it now and then there's some self giving unit now and then there is this the milk of human kindness now and then there is some magnanimity in it now and then there is some generosity and there are times, little human love does reach a higher level than at other times, but the basic commodity is self pleasure, self gaining and it is a conditional thing.
I never cease to be amazed as a well were getting a divorce because you don't meet my needs anymore.
Whoever said love was all about somebody meet your needs. Love is all about you meeting somebody needs physical desire. Personal gratification is a fickle dream. It's an elusive bubble if you want to chase your lifelong to find the ultimate fantasy you wind up desperate destitute and never having realized the world says I love you for what you do for me it is shallow, selfish, sensual sexual Satan tries to sell us to the world is incredible to me that Christians fall into the trap people.
I think that that what's happening in the church today in this area of divorce in the breakup of marriage and infidelity in all of this is based simply on this one principle Christian people will not walk in love as God defines they want classes. I'm not talking about the world's love, fornication, uncleanness, covetousness that shouldn't be named among you, not one single time.
After that, we heard a word fornication. You know that work it's it's mentioned in its noun forms at least 35 times in the New Testament.
The big problem that when something is mentioned 35 times at the problem. The word tornado means sex sin enemies anytime any There is a term in the Greek and criteria and that word means. That's a great word. It means discipline and self-control. That's its basic meaning, and it denotes the power of control that a person has over himself and Christie in a good word. Socrates said it is one of the chief virtues started.
Plato insulted Aristotle. The word was self-control and self-discipline, by the way it is used 10 times in the New Testament and it always means self-control sometimes transited temperance but meeting the same thing but watch where it's real significances.
The ancient Greeks used it to refer to sexual self control sexual self-control. They said it is the ability to transcend one's passions to transcend one's desires sexually now in the New Testament. It is used in that way also.
In acts, for example, 24, 25 when we destroyed a very fascinating word and Paul here is talking about talking to Felix and as he reasoned, he's talking to Felix. He talked to him, watches, and this is really powerful about righteousness, self-control and judgment to come. I say lots of pretty general message will righteousness will self-control judgment to come closer.
You know what he was doing was Felix married Drusilla in an adulterous relationship and here is Paul in front of Felix. This powerful man and he says them. I like to give you a sermon Felix. It has to do with righteousness as opposed to lack of self control, sexual self-control, which leads to the judgment of God was and what he was doing was nailing Felix to the wall on his own relationship to his wife. This wasn't a generalized message he was saying. Felix your living illustration of God's righteousness violated by a failure to have sexual self-control, which ends in judgment in first Corinthians chapter 7, the word is used again and there it is used in reference to marriage where the apostle Paul is teaching and he says if they cannot have self-control let them marry forts better to marry than to burn an amine sexual self-control.
If you have a problem with that, get married, don't try to say I have the gift of singleness, but it sure is difficult because I have this tremendous desire for marriage know if you have that desire and you do not have self-control, sexual self-control, and your better to be married. In other words, I want to see that the wording criteria is a word that refers to sexual self-control.
Now the Greeks said that that word had an opposite and the opposite was Cornelia so now you can see by the opposite what it means a lack of sexual self-control. That's tornado is an antonym of an criteria's behavior out of control is on discipline is beyond the limits of God sets and by the way, it means beastie reality homosexuality.
It was used to speak of.
Ophelia, which is sex with children child molesting money any kind of unchastity prostitution harlotry anything comes under that term any lack of sexual self-control. Tornado is a Greek word glace which means to write Cornelia and Grassley is pornography to write about sex, sin that's where the word comes from is no place for this in our life. He says this shouldn't be once named among the saints. Not one time.
You remember the first Corinthians chapter 6 of the apostle Paul says is no place for this in our life. Not all such were some of you he said you used to be like this. This is in the past but since you come to Jesus Christ. That's all gone. That's all done away with. That's all in the past. There's no place for that.
The Corinthians. Of course were throwing up all kinds of stupid arguments about the fact well meet for the body and the body for me to remember that I'm it's only biological just like eating after all just a biological thing boss deposited biological at all, don't you know your merit, your bodies a member of Christ. And when you join yourself to a harlot you join Christ to a harlot, and by the way, harlots, anybody who has sex outside of marriage and when you do that is not just a biological thing you're taking Jesus Christ with whom you are one in your joining Jesus Christ to a harlot, not just biological. If you're living in any kind of a perversion of love, your blight on the church in first Corinthians chapter 5 in the apostle Paul writes.
He says it's reported commonly there is fornication among you, and he says instead of being stricken about.
Instead of being mournful and broken about your puffed up, and you have not mourned and he says your glorying is not good and he says to the church you put that person out of the church delivering to Satan for the destruction of the flesh. Don't let that 11 destroy the lump and he says if you find a fornicator in the church. I write unto you, not the company with a fornicator if he calls himself a brother he's a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a regular or a drunkard or an extortion or don't even eat a meal with restricted spot for that.
Your blight on the church is to be removed from the church if you live that way, to say nothing of the fact that your definitely not walking as a child of God.
Second Peter to he calls people to do that.
Scabs and fill spots on the assembly.
Satan will always introduce a counterfeit look further and we will go over these words of detail because we have in the past, but he says neither fornication nor uncleanness know that word a catharsis uncleanness. It means the vile rotten stench that goes with sexual sin refers to immoral spots passions ideas all the way on orgies every bit of that's not music but it's so wonderful we remove and Jesus says it's the same word that speaks of the rotten filth and decay of a body full of maggots. Pretty strong language to say but were in love.
Love is love doesn't do that.
We have sex madness.
I'm afraid even in the church of Charisse shocks me some of the books are now being written by Christian people sex for Christians. I thrown some of the trashcan. I've had some books sent to me written by Christians published by Christian publishers dealing with the issue of sex and about three pages and pitched in the trash know what's happened is the world was selling this so effectively that the church is, in the back door by and submitted sort of spread to sanctify, you can't sanctify this art.
Once one person say in his premarital counseling advised the trouble to see each other naked before they were married so that they would have some idea what they were getting in ludicrous Susan something clinical can be dealt with in that fashion.
There are some even suggested premarital sex relationships for Christians before their married the next word should be any that no uncleanness, or covetousness, it was covetous of the do this file. Next, the covetousness could be transited greediness and you know what it says to go back to Exodus 2017 when it's talking there you shall not covet. It says you shall not covet this and this and this, nor your neighbors.
What wife will know something people in our society to covet other people's wives covet other women they covet women they see on TV or the movies or ads or magazines or books or whatever. This is sin. This is the counterfeit is part of the lie, the elusive Bible the fantasy that never is never happens. You know those those beautiful magnificent movie stars are supposed to be so wonderful that Philip the fantasies of so many plain people are the same once again stammered anybody. It's a fantasy it's a lie to see if elusive isn't there greediness people go after women and women go after men like notches on their belt. So the Bible says there will be a counterfeit and let it look at the anniversary not be once named among not one time people say well I couldn't help but I fell outside my marriage. That's not a proof of love. That's not a justification for divorce that simply approve of the rotten sinful heart that you've got. That's all you say well we couldn't help it was so in love and I don't love him anymore then you're a sinner because you are commanded to love that work your center and that isn't going to justify a divorce that condemns your in addition to, not loving your husband are not loving your wife or whatever starts this thing you're a covet or two because you've covet something that was not yours was outside God's laws and outside God's will and outside God's plan so you not only sin and not loving as you should. But you soon.
Coveting what is yours in your read David and Bathsheba. You soon again because will steal what is yours, from whatever personable angst so your sin just keeps going, but it not be once named, not even one time anniversary is become a Diaz holy one holy ones be characterized by holy love unholy lust, selfish, conditional and unforgiving. We are set apart. We are holy and holy ones be engaged in unholiness. How can those who are the children of the holy God be doing unholy thing say will boiler never done and I'm sticking with mom. You're also the years, pain in her good just so nobody gets off the hook. Verse four says you shouldn't have any filthy talk foolish talk jesting, but only giving of thanks you so what's this lesson. Not only are not doing and I'm talk about that out of just literally devastate our society filthiness, by the way, means general obscenity, though the literal route is that which is disgraceful and it has to do with words. It basically has to do with words verse 12 of the same chapter is a shame to speak of things which are done of them in secret. You don't even talk about that stuff. That's why it bothers me that there's so much a license even with" include Christianity to talk about that area of sexual life in a way that I don't feel the Bible how whatever happened to the glory of discovery for two people set apart by God. Marriage disgraceful talk is what filthiness means it has to do with words that are disgraceful.
You can't read a book without that garbage in it from the world to see a television program can see if you cannot have a conversation with some people. And yet it is never to be ours to be indulged in are we to be a filthy conversation never wants are we to listen to disgraceful talk.
We are called a holy conversation with James one. We are called to holy conversation when you open your mouth got to be the words that come from the mind of God.
The heart of God the lips of Jesus, not the stuff that the world talks about how people can go sit in the movie and watch all the stuff and listen to all that you can do that with the television. I can read books like that of magazines like that are laugh at jokes like that when the Bible says should never be once named among you, not only filthiness but look at foolish talking Marlowe get more all of you from moral we get more on mean stupid talk is talk coming from somebody was an intellectual deficiency. I call it low obscenity, I'm sure. I mean low obscenity. This is the sin of the drunk, the sin of the fool the sin of the gutter mouth. The low class obscene stuff just filthy gutter talk senseless profitless words with a filthy connotation, low obscenity, more all love you moronic, but the next word is very interesting. It's the word jesting and it is the word you talk pale about it doesn't mean low obscenity. It means hi obscenity you say what in the world.
Is that well.
The word literally means able to turn easily. Have you ever known anybody who can take something that is said and turned it easily into something dirty. That's the clever wit of the talkshow host, you know, the late-night guy who no matter what you say.
He twisted to have a filthy innuendo so to one and you've got the moronic stupidity of the drunken nor the fool who just talks filthy gutter talk. On the other hand, you got the sophistication of the clever man who's not stupid, but it wasn't clever dirty wit who can easily turn anything to have a an innuendo in both cases, it's garbage can. Mind in both cases it is talking about something that is evil. And Paul says you don't do it in verse three and he says in verse four, you don't talk cleanup your life cleanup your talk on the other hand, verse four says we are to give thanks we are to give thanks is pretty clear you know I would give thanks and I want just get this if you don't get anything else I say, get this, because thanks is the most un-selfish thing you do get thanks absolutely unselfish instead of seeking selfish things sexual fulfillment, uncleanness, coveting instead of indulging in all the self-fulfilling things stop say thanks. That's why you see it says in first Thessalonians. In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God concerning you.
Nothing you ever do in your life will teach you unselfishness like giving thanks you spent all day giving thanks, Angel step right outside yourself because, thanks, has to be offered to God's bumpy, self-centered is what he said and give thanks. Give thanks. Give thanks special of the God stress you love to others, but your life be characterized by saying thanks and I believe in going from God hereto to those around you. Instead of wanting everything for everybody instead of wanting to take what you love in a way that says thanks for what you mean. Thanks for what you are. Thanks for what you allow me to give you just be a unselfish person instead of selfish God's love is selfish and thankful in the world's love is faithless and selfish and finally the plea the pattern.
The perversion which the punishment is clear what is was secretly look this you know, no fornicator, no personal lives and fornication. No unclean person. No covetous person who is an idolater because if you covet something.
It's an idol and he lists all three of the same things that are in verse three.
Persons like that have no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. If you live like that you're not what they're not saved it on and got's kingdom. You better examine yourself. No fornicator to get no unclean person and no covetous man is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
That's not how lifestyle. Those people are in the world. No room for doubt about God's attitude toward immorality. No wonder you shouldn't do it. No wonder you shouldn't even talk about where the children of God. You see this in the text where the children of God in verse one were the beloved of Christ were the holy one is the end of verse three, where the citizens of the kingdom, and we must have consistent with our identity. He says look at verse five. This ye know, this is any big mystery you know this and by the way, I'm afraid something will know the we want to send everybody well so-and-so I know that their constant living and fornication.
I know there living with the personal time I know they do this all the time. I know there are homosexuals. But after all they made a decision. Listen this you know that no fornicator say no personal lives like that you change so maybe there'll be a time when a believer falls into the sin fornication, but that is not going to be the continuing characteristic of his life without a break from the time he was converted this to be a change because salvation is based on repentance.
If you ever learn anything when you were saved, you learn that Titus 211. Listen to this for the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. Now when you got salvation, it says this teaching us. Did you know your salvation teaches you something. It teaches you, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present age.
When you were saved, you learned that much your salvation taught you that much that you couldn't go on living in lusts, ungodliness, salvation teaches us basic stuff choices.
Those people who don't have any part so what about a Christian was drawn into sin in that area or Christian who does do that foolish talking, or filthiness well or to forgive. Sure for showing on it keeps on cleansing us, and there will be times when we as Christians do feel maybe in those areas. It is necessary. There may be times when it happens on God to forgive, but it will not be the flow of your life to live like that not all holiness is a change in your life at salvation and a decreasing frequency of sin will verse six he says this is the punishment, they're not going to enter the kingdom and let no man deceive you with vain words don't you let anybody tell you can do this and be a Christian. Don't you let anybody tell you can live like this and God forgive me, don't you let anybody tell you that be all right. You're gonna get in the kingdom it will be okay decision you did you just think it's all right to live like this. Don't anybody deceive you with those empty words there empty their meaningless or useless for because of these very things. What things, fornication, uncleanness, covetousness, filthiness, foolish talk ingesting comes the wrath of God on the sons of disobedience is these are the very things for which God damns people to hell: anybody deceive. These are not characteristics of children of God. There characteristics of children of disobedience see the contrast verse six ends with the children of disobedience verse one began with the deer children of God is a difference in the result of it all is a final word. Listen close verse seven. Be not ye therefore what partakers with the word particular means part don't join the world in its evil the past, beloved is passed. This is grace to you with John MacArthur. Thanks for being with us. John is looking at the contrast between your life before your conversion to Christ and after it he calls his current study, the portrait of a new life. No, these are basic foundational truths. But you know where a new Christian or a longtime Christian it's impossible to spend too much time digging into the foundational truths that we've covered in this study in a course that's true for all of God's word in this time of year.
John, our listeners have a great opportunity to give their loved ones a tool that will draw them into the riches of Scripture, day after day yeah I think if you thought about it and ask yourself what I want to give to somebody I love of all the things that you could give that which made the greatest spiritual impact would would be number one choice and I think we have to think like that moon who needs to take back another sweater. People don't need something that the parish is something that passes away something that grows old something. It's going to be obsolete.
If you really love someone, give them something that's going to be transformative and that means it's going to have to be something supernatural is going to have to be something from heaven, and that of course is the word of God and that we been mentioning this on a mention again.
The MacArthur daily Bible enables you to read to the Bible in one year, 365 daily readings a portion from the Old Testament portion from the new, and that a portion from my Psalms and Proverbs and it just plants the word of God in your mind, and the study notes are going to help you to navigate the truth is that you're reading on a daily basis. If you don't have a copy of the MacArthur daily Bible you need to get one for this Christmas for yourself and pick up several more for the folks you love. Yes, this is a great resource if you or someone you know is struggling to read God's word consistently to order the MacArthur daily Bible. Contact us today. Call our toll-free number 855 grace or go to GT Y.org again the MacArthur daily Bible makes it easy to read through the entire Bible in 2022 and if you haven't read the entire Scripture in a year because some parts were difficult to understand the MacArthur daily Bible can actually help with that includes notes by John clarify the confusing passages. The MacArthur daily Bible cost $16 and shipping is free to order, call 855 grace or go to our website. GT Y.org and remember to John's current audio study. The portrait of a new life is available free of charge in MP3 or transcript format so if you've missed the lesson study download any or all of the six messages free of charge in MP3 or transcript format at our website. GT Y.now for John MacArthur at the entire grace to you staff on Phil Johnson. Remember to look for grace to you television this Sunday and then be here when John looks at what it means to walk in the light as he continues his study. Portrait of a new life with another half hour of unleashing God's true one verse at a time on Mondays, grace to