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What Are You Building Your Eternity Upon?

Lighting Your Way / Lighthouse Baptist
The Truth Network Radio
February 25, 2023 7:53 am

What Are You Building Your Eternity Upon?

Lighting Your Way / Lighthouse Baptist

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February 25, 2023 7:53 am

February 12, 2023 – Message from Pastor Josh Bevan

            Main Scripture Passage:  Matthew 7:24-29

Topic: Salvation


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In your Bible, if you would look with me to Matthew chapter number seven, Matthew seven, and when you find your place, we'll stand in honor of God's word. Matthew seven. We're going to read verse 24 down verse number 29. This is the concluding portion of scripture of the Sermon on the Mount, and so I know you thought we would never get there, but we have arrived.

It's only taken about a year to work through chapter five through seven, which is such a incredible portion of scripture. Our Lord says here in these closing verses of this sermon in verse 24, if you were to read verse 24 with me, therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man which built his house upon a rock. He goes on to say, and the rain descended and the floods came and the winds blew and beat upon that house, and it fell not for it was founded upon a rock. Everyone that heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them not shall be likened unto a foolish man which built his house upon the sand. If you would also read verse 27 with me and the rain descended and the floods came and the winds blew and beat upon that house and it fell and great was the fall of it says, and it came to pass when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine, for he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes. Father, your word today is our wisdom. It has brought us salvation. This is the word of eternal life, and we are so humbled by the grace that has brought us the word of God. How many through the centuries have not had the availability of your word, and today we have it in our hands before our eyes. Give us a heart today to receive the word of God, which is ultimate reality.

This is Heaven's truth for Earth's citizens. I pray today, if anyone doesn't know the Lord Jesus Christ, that today would be the day of salvation. I pray that you would accomplish all your holy desire in the hearts of your people. May Jesus Christ be put on display, and may we leave here today exalting you alone.

We ask it in Jesus name, and God's people said, Man, you may be seated this morning. We now come to the end of the great Sermon on the Mount. This is the launch of the Lord's public ministry. He's actually been ministering around Galilee for about a year.

This is moving into year two. He begins his preaching ministry. There are thousands of people that are coming and listening to this sermon, and he has taught many things through this three chapter sermon, the longest sermon ever recorded in scripture from our Lord. He has taught us the eight Beatitudes or key truths on how to become kingdom citizens. In a day when religion had become externalized, a legalistic system of works in order to gain favor with God, Jesus assaults that system with the truth that you cannot make yourself righteous. It's not external effort that gets you into the kingdom of Heaven. It is internal brokenness and humility before God. So he says, Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of God. You must come to God recognizing your spiritual poverty and bankruptcy and total dependency upon mercy. The Lord taught on being salt and light in the world that we would stand out.

We would be noticed as being different. He taught that this word of his is eternal, that heaven and earth would pass away before the smallest letter and even the smallest marking called a tittle would pass from the law till all of its fulfilled. He shocked the crowds by teaching them that their religious leaders were hypocrites and phonies, and that unless their righteousness exceeded that of the scribes and Pharisees, that they would not enter into the kingdom of Heaven. He taught them on murder, hate, lust, adultery, divorce, taking us the priority of forgiving others and even loving your enemies. He taught on giving. He taught on prayer and even fasting and said that you can do all of those things, but the motive for which you do them determines whether they are right or wrong. He taught on laying up treasure in heaven and not on earth. He taught them not to live with worry over the physical, but rather to seek first God's kingdom and our Father in Heaven who knows our needs before we ask him would provide all of our needs according to his riches and glory in Christ.

He taught on how to judge rightly in human relationships. He gave us the golden rule in Matthew 7 verse 12 to do to others as you would have them do to you. And then he brings the conclusion of this sermon with a riveting statement that there are only two paths that you can be on a broad path that leads to eternal destruction and a narrow path that leads to eternal life. He tells us the path to hell is heavily populated and the pathway to heaven is lightly populated. He warned that only a few would actually make it to heaven. He then warned that there would also be deception on the broad path, that there would actually be false preachers and false prophets inviting people into the broad path, declaring it is actually the way to heaven when it's ultimately the way to hell. And he's called them wolves and sheep's clothing in Matthew 7. Last Sunday, we looked at verse 21 through 23 at one of the most jolting portions of scripture in all the Bible. Jesus declares here in these three verses, Matthew 7 21 through 23, as we saw last week, that it is possible to call Jesus Lord, to use the right words to have a belief in him, but a belief that is not a saving faith. And he says it's possible to call upon the Lord and end up in hell.

He said this is going to happen to many people, as he says in verse 22, that many would call him Lord, but they would not end up going to heaven. I had quite a few people tell me that that message was very shocking and very convicting. Others said they loved it.

Others said that they wanted to turn it off at times. I know it's convicting and challenging, but that's what the Word of God does, isn't it? When you reveal the standard of heaven, Earth's citizens should sometimes tremble before that. We need to be humble, don't we? We need to be pressed down by the Word of God so we could be lifted up with the Word of God.

Anybody feel like you took sin just a little bit more serious this past week? They're hearing such truths. And here in this final statement from our Lord in Matthew 7, we see Christ painting a picture of a man who responds rightly to Christ's message and one who does not, one who enters the narrow way and one who enters the broad path. Jesus shares here how they both face a tremendous storm.

One would last and the other would be devastated. And this final challenge to the crowd that day, Jesus calls them to be wise instead of foolish, to build on the rock instead of sand, to be doers of the word and not hearers only. Let me remind you that when Jesus is saying this, he is saying it and warning people that were religious. These were Jews who believed in the right God. They had the right Bible, but they did not have a right saving faith. These were not pagans. They were not atheists or agnostics. They were not polytheists or pantheists in a known false religion. They were people who believed in the right God.

They believed in Yahweh. They believed in his word and yet Jesus warned many of them would not make it to heaven. And today I want to look at these last several verses and highlight three key truths that Jesus tells us that will evidence true saving faith. Three truths about true saving faith that our Lord gives.

And the first one is found in verse 24. The Lord taught here that true salvation is built on the word of God. The first thing that Jesus taught is what he had been saying for these last three chapters is not a message of men.

It's not an opinion of man. It's not a suggestion, but rather it is the word of the living God. He says in verse 24, whosoever heareth these sayings of mine.

In verse 26, and everyone that heareth these sayings of mine. When you read the Old Testament, you find that when God came to the prophets, when he came to the people in the Old Testament, he would come to them as the word of the Lord. They referred to him as the word of the Lord.

And Jeremiah one for it says, Then the word of the Lord came unto me, saying Ezekiel chapter three verse 16, it says, And it came to pass at the end of seven days that the word of the Lord came unto me, saying in Jonah chapter one one, it says, Now the word of the Lord came into Jonah, the son of Amity saying in the New Testament, we learned who the word of the Lord is. It tells us in John one one in the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was who was God. So whoever the word is, is also deity. Verse two says the same was in the beginning with God. That means he's also eternal. It goes on to say in verse three, all things were made by him and without him was not anything made that was made.

He's also creator. The eternal deity, who is the creator, who is the word, then incarnates himself in verse 14. It says in the word or the Greek word, the Logos was made flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glories of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. So who is the word of God?

It is Jesus Christ. The Bible is the written word. Jesus Christ is the living word. Jesus put God on display. When you read the Bible, you are reading the word of Scripture. But in that day, you could see the scriptures lived out through the person of Christ. What we have studied from Matthew five through seven is the word of God, Jesus Christ, revealing ultimate reality. This is eternal truth for us. Friends, this is this is what is really real. You ever feel like you cannot trust the media?

Your response is convincing. You ever feel like you cannot trust politicians? President or past presidents in certain ways, they say things and governors and senators and the good news is there is a book we could trust.

There is ultimate reality. Sometimes you feel like the things they say. It's like I don't think I can believe what that news anchor just said.

I don't believe that I can trust. But when you read the Bible, this is God's word. And notice how the people respond to it in verse 28. It says that it came to pass when Jesus had ended these things that people were astonished at his doctrine.

The word doctrine means his teachings. And the word astonished is a plus. So it's which means out of implicit means to strike. It means to be struck in your mind and literally throw you into amazement. In the common vernacular of today, we would say it blew their minds away. When they heard what he said, they were blown away by it.

Like poof. In their minds they were thinking, I cannot believe he just said all of that. Shocked. Mark 1 22, and they were astonished at his doctrine. Luke 4 32, they were astonished at his doctrine for his word was with power. When the religious leaders had sent different authorities to arrest Jesus, they came back and the Pharisees said, why did you not apprehend Jesus? And their response was we have never heard a man speak like this.

They were stunned in silence. He spoke with power. This was a major point of contention with Christ. Religious leaders would ask him over and over, who is your authority? And Jesus was the authority. He is God made flesh.

He dwelt among us. One of the chief and vital differences between what we believe here at lighthouse and what other not all but some other church groups such as Orthodox and Catholic groups believe is we believe the scriptures alone are the sole authority for what we believe and how we live as believers. We do not base truth here and test truth upon tradition. We do not base it upon early church fathers. We base truth upon one statement. What say if the scripture, we believe the word of God is the litmus test.

Everything comes under the book. When Paul was asked, are works part of salvation? He says, well, what say if the scripture Jesus over and over said, you do err not knowing the scripture nor the power of God. Paradosis is the Greek word for tradition in the New Testament. It's used 13 times because Orthodox and Catholic churches condemn sola scriptura. They condemn it. It's false, they say. Church tradition also is on par with scripture.

We reject that. We believe every tradition of the church and every teaching of the church comes under the authority of the book, the word of the living God. And when you study the word tradition in the Bible, paradosis, it's used 13 times in the New Testament, 13 times in the New Testament. It's used eight times in the gospel records. All eight times the Lord Jesus uses the word.

Every time he uses the word for tradition, he uses it in a negative sense. He said full well, do you reject the commandment of God that you may keep your own traditions because the Jews had a plethora of traditions. 300 times the New Testament directly quotes the Old Testament. There are 1000 direct. There are 1000 references to the Old Testament in the new so that the Lord Jesus Christ, the apostles quote directly or referred to an Old Testament passage 1300 plus times. You know how many times they quote the tradition of the elders or the tradition of the Jews?

Zero. So why do churches today base truth on equal footing with scripture? That is a manmade system. Y'all believe that? Do I need to do a whole sermon today on Sola Scriptura? We believe the word of God, don't we?

Some of you are like, duh, that's obvious, but some have grown up in systems that would reject that idea and you need to know that that is a non biblical teaching. We must base it upon the word of God. So Jesus brings the sermon to a conclusion and he says that you must build upon the rock.

And the question is, what is the rock? What is the foundation? And if you talk to any carpenter, anybody that's been in construction, they will tell you the most important part of a building process is the foundation, right? You would understand that when you build a foundation, you dig a footer, you make sure you get below the frost line.

I believe in Ohio it's around 32 or 36 inches. You put drain tile around the foundation to keep water from damaging that. You must build it strong and protect it. Footers are built with strong material, concrete, reinforced with rebar, rock. I mean, these are solid, solid kinds of material. 2011 went to Israel, my wife and I with a group and if you know where the temple mount is, Herod's temple, which was a rebuilt temple, which was going on in Jesus's day where the temple is today, you see the golden dome, the dome of the rock, which will, by the way, not be there forever.

The Lord will remove that for sure. But those foundational stones that they built that temple mount with are seemingly impossibly huge. The foundation stones were measured at 10 and a half feet high and I walked along and they were unbelievable, 10 and a half feet high by 14 foot thick by 45 feet long, estimated some of them at 570 tons apiece. People say we're smarter today.

How on earth did they do that? They have no idea today, but it still stands because the foundation was laid strong. So some believe that the foundation or the rock here is referring to God or to Christ, but I believe it's very clear what this rock is and foundation in verse 24, Jesus tells us, he says, therefore, whosoever here at these sayings of mine is the one building upon a rock. And if you don't hear these sayings and do them, then you're building on sand. So either you're building upon the rock of God's word or the sand of man's reasoning. The other building material Jesus said you can use is sand, a very inferior material.

We see that sand is not something that you would want to lay in your foundation. When our kids were little, we would go to the beach, we would build sandcastles. I don't know if anybody else is competitive or not, but I would take one or two of the children.

My wife would take one or two, and it started off by being all about the kids, but it deteriorated after you build that thing for so long, and it really begins to be what you want it to be. Your little daughter comes up and says, let me put this here. I'm like, no, no, no, hold on. Get back. Why don't you go fill this water bucket up with water down in the ocean? Bring me some water back.

You're like, stay back from it. You build this great edifice of a sandcastle, and it was inevitable that high tide would come in, and you would just watch what you built get totally flat. It didn't matter how elaborate you made it, it didn't matter how awesome this thing was, it was all washed away by the end of the day. So we wizened up, so we would see where the high tide marks were, and we would just build it just past that. You all know what I'm talking about? You'd make this massive sandcastle, we'd spend hours, and then there was always that junior high boy with size 15 feet that came through in the night, and they would step all over your sandcastle. So I learned that you can buy 16 penny nails, and if you put the sand just over top, they have no idea that, no. But I thought about it, thought about it.

Camera's up on the beach, who is this punk? Friend, either you're building upon the rock or on sand, and sand doesn't last, does it? The Bible is clear that the word of God is the foundation, and the word of God is what produces salvation. The Bible tells us in 1 Peter 1 verse 22, seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth. He tells us in verse 23, being born again not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible by the word of God. Psalms 19, seven tells us the law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul. Jesus declared in John 5 24, he that heareth my word and believeth on him that sent me hath everlasting life.

He tells us in John 12 49, I have not spoken of myself, but the father which sent me, he gave me a commandment what I should say and what I should speak, and I know what that his commandment is life everlasting. When you get into Matthew 13, Jesus gives us the parable of the soils, and he compares the word of God like a seed that is planted into the soil of men's hearts, and it is alone what produces salvation. There is nothing else that the farmer used than the seed.

The seed was his only method. That's why at the end of the parable, Jesus said, he who has ears to hear, let him hear. Today, farmers, evangelists, preachers and Christians want to modify the seed, but the problems not with the seed or with the word of God, the problems with soil.

It needs tilled up in the heart of men become hard. The word of God is what brings salvation. You're born again by the word of God. Romans 10 17 says, faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. It is the pure seed of God's word that alone produces salvation. What else would we preach than God's word? That's why when you come in here, we're not giving you a 15 minute story and then throw one verse in and then finish up with a happy ending. We come in, we open the word of God, we read the text, we explain the text, we seek to apply the text.

There's nothing else. We give you verse after verse after verse because there's nowhere else we can go to get this kind of power. The word of God is powerful.

You believe that? Remember the rich man in Luke 16, Jesus said, who went to hell. The rich man in hell desired only two things. He said, I need water to cool my tongue cause I'm tormented in a flame. The man in health said he's literally tormented in a flame according to Jesus. And there's only one other thing that the man in hell wanted.

Remember what it was? He said, I have five brothers on earth. Send Lazarus, send somebody back from the dead. They need a supernatural miracle, a resurrection, somebody to tell them that hell is real so that they don't come to this place of torment. It's interesting that people in hell become very evangelistic in their hearts.

They long for people to know hell is real, that it is a place of torments and they don't want people coming there. The man in hell believed that this best strategy of evangelism was through a resurrection or a miracle. How does Abraham respond to him? Listen to what Luke 16, 27 says.

Then he said, I pray thee therefore father that thou would send him to my father's house for I have five brethren that they that he may testify to them less they also come to this place of torment. Abraham saved in him. They have Moses in the prophets.

Well, what's that? Moses in the prophets are the Old Testament. That's what they had during this time. Let them hear them. And he answered, nay, father Abraham. In other words, the word of God is not enough. But if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent. He calls salvation repentance. They need to send someone from the dead. They need a resurrection.

They need a miracle. They need something more than the word of God. How does Abraham respond to this? Luke 16 31, he says, and he said unto them unto him, if they hear not Moses in the prophets, if they don't hear the word of God, neither will they be persuaded though one rose from the dead. You think a miracle is more powerful than the word of the living God. Don't take evangelism advice from people in hell. I remember as a young man as a teenager thinking, God, if you could just do miracles like do some amazing feats, then everybody would believe.

No, they wouldn't. You know what happened when Lazarus rose again from the dead? The Bible says that they tried to kill him because they said, everybody's believing in Jesus because of Lazarus. So they tried to put him to death.

That's how hard men's hearts are. Is your salvation build on God's word this morning? Are you saved because you have understood the scriptures? The Holy Spirit opened your eyes to that reality.

Or is it based on a feeling on some church tradition? You did some religious act. You took communion to, you were part of the Eucharist. You were baptized. You believe in God.

What are you basing it upon? Jesus says, therefore, who hears these things of mine. And in verse 24, the word heareth is a word that is in the present tense.

It means you hear with attention so that you can carry out what was spoken and you continually do that. Hereeth, Akuo, it's I hear for the purpose of obedience and I continue to hear with the purpose of obedience. Not only is salvation built on the word of God, but salvation is sustained by the fact that you keep hearing it and you keep seeking to hear it and obey it. Those who are saved have ears that hear the word of God. You want to hear the word of God. You do hear the word of God. Those who are not saved could care less about reading the Bible. They'll say, Oh, I believe in God. I believe in Jesus.

I prayed prayers. You ever read the Bible? No. You ever seek to obey? No. You ever go to church to hear the teaching?

No, I don't. They are apathetical. They may even come to church. They may hear it, but they're not desirous to hear it. They're pleasing their wife. They're pleasing their husband.

They're trying to appease their guilty conscience. But there is no love for Christ. There is no drawing to the word of God and hungering and thirsting for the word of God more than their necessary bread. Jesus likens this to sheep following the voice of a shepherd. You know, at night there would be many shepherds with different flocks and those Galilean hillsides, but they had a common fold where they would bring the flocks and bring them and sometimes hundreds of them would be inside of a common area. So say you had 25 sheep and you brought them in and there may have been another dozen shepherds bringing their sheep in and you say, Well, didn't they all get mixed up?

Well, in the morning, the shepherd would come and call his sheep and many times they called their sheep by names. And if you have 25 sheep in the midst of 200 sheep, your 25 would have walked out from all different areas and come out to the shepherd because they know the shepherd's voice. Jesus said in John 10 verse three, to him the porter or the gatekeeper opens and the sheep hear his voice. He call it his own sheep by name and leadeth them out.

And when he puts forth his own sheep, he goes before them and the sheep follow him for they know his voice and a stranger will they not follow but will flee from him for they know not the voice of a stranger. Some of you have read a book by Philip Keller who was a lifelong shepherd. He wrote the book a shepherd's view of the 23rd Psalm.

If you've never read it, it's worth getting to pretty condensed to read. He wrote another book entitled Shepherds Look at the Good Shepherd and His Sheep. And in it from the perspective of a shepherd, this is what he writes. He said the relationship which rapidly develops between a shepherd and the sheep under his care is to a definite degree dependent upon the use of the shepherd's voice. Sheep quickly become accustomed to their owner's particular voice. They are acquainted with his unique tone. They know its particular sounds and inflections. They can distinguish it from that of any other person. If a stranger should come among them, they would not recognize nor respond to his voice in the same way that they would to their shepherd, even if, he says, the visitor used the same words and the same phrases. Jesus tells us here in John 10 verse 8, all that ever came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them.

You need to hear me this morning. True believers will not be led astray by false prophets. They will not.

They cannot. They distinguish it. Some of you know what I'm talking about. You were sitting in a church. You had somebody send you a YouTube video. You were reading a book. Something false comes out and something in you says that is not true.

That's not correct. I don't and you moved away from perhaps a false system of religion, a false system of teaching. You were seeking the truth and perhaps God led you here. And when you heard the word of God, your heart was drawn to this book. You, the preaching, the teaching, your heart is inflamed to that.

And you distinguish what is correct from what is false, what is true from what is an error. Those who are safe follow the words of Christ. You don't follow false voices. That's why he says in John 10 verse number five, for they know the voice of a stranger. They know not the voice of a stranger.

They won't follow that. In 1 John 4 one, he says, Beloved, believe not every spirit. Try the spirits whether they're of God or not. Matthew 24 24. Jesus said of the end times, he says, There shall arise false Christ. False prophets shall show great signs and wonders in so much if it be possible.

But it's not possible. But if it were, they would deceive the very elect. But because the elect will not believe those false prophets.

But if it were possible, they would. That's how powerful he goes on in John 10 verse 16 and says this other sheep I have people who are not saved yet. Speaking here of primarily of gentiles, which are including people like us and other sheep I have, which are not of this fold, not of the Jews. Them also I must bring and they shall hear my voice. There shall be one fold and one shepherd.

He has made both one Jew and gentile one in Christ. You know what John 10 27 says? He says, My sheep hear my voice and I know them.

And guess what they do? They follow me before you were saved. The voice of the shepherd called out to you and you follow him.

This is the effectual calling of God. And he says, I give unto them eternal life. Anybody glad that he gives you eternal life? And he says, and you will never perish. I love the superlatives.

Aren't they great? You'll never perish. Neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. You cannot lose what God has done. In John 18, Jesus stands before Pilate, the Roman procurator of Galilee, Judea, I should say. John 18 verse 37 says this pilot therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest I am a king. To this end was I born and for this cause came I into the into the world that I should bear witness unto the truth. And look what he says.

Everyone that is of the truth heareth my voice. When God calls those who the Bible refers to as his elect the chosen of God, they respond to him. They are his.

They belong to him. You know what's interesting in Acts Chapter 17 Paul goes to Corinth. And before he really starts his ministry there, Jesus says, preach boldly and fear not, for I have much people in this city and no man will harm you. They're not even saved yet.

Jesus says they're mine. Preach boldly. And it's through the preaching that God uses the simplicity of the gospel message to bring his sheep to the shepherd. And it's the gospel, the word of God that brings them to him. That's why we herald the message. What else would we preach? Some preachers preach such a watered down message that even an unbeliever doesn't know what they're rejecting.

That's how tragic it is. The word of God is what produces salvation. Friend, what is your salvation built on the word of God or man's word? Do you love God's word or you take it lightly? Is your heart inflamed with the word of God and the truth of God's word?

Or are you just like, when's this going to get over so I can eat lunch? Secondly, true salvation is not only built on the word of God, but it's also produced. It produces obedience. There are a lot of similar things in verse 24 through 27 between these two men. You have two builders, two foundations, two houses. Both face the same storm, but there is a clear distinction that the Lord gives in verse 24 and in verse 26 between the two. Look what he says in verse 24. He says, therefore whosoever heareth these things of mine and what's he say do with them.

I will liken him unto a wise man who has built his house upon a rock. The word do it there is in the present tense and it calls for this to be your lifestyle. He is saying that obedience to God's word is not something that's simply heard.

It is evidence through living it out. In verse 26, he says, and everyone that heareth these things of mine, they hear the same way as verse 24 whosoever heareth these things of mine and verse 26 and what do with them not. They do them not.

This is a professional here. They hear the word of God. They may listen to sermons. They could be faithful even to church, but they will not give up their life to obedience to Christ. Their faith doesn't cost them anything. JC Ryle says, what costs little is worth little a religion which costs us nothing and consists in nothing but hearing sermons will always prove at last to be a useless thing.

Came across this illustration that Chuck Swindoll gave in his book. Improving your serve thought it's fitting as he applies the importance of not just hearing but doing. He says, let's pretend that you work for me. In fact, you are my executive assistant in a company that I have that's growing rapidly. I'm the owner and I'm interested in expanding my business overseas to pull this off. I make plans to travel abroad and stay there until the new branches opened up and established. I make all the arrangements to take my family to Europe between six and eight months. I leave you in charge with a busy stateside organization. I tell you that I will write you regularly and give you the specific directions and instructions you need to operate my company. I leave you and stay months pass. A flow of letters are mailed from Europe and you receive them at the national headquarters. I spell out all my expectations.

Finally, I returned soon after my arrival. I drive down to the office and what I see stuns me. Grass and weeds have grown up high.

A few windows along the street are even broken. I walk into the receptionist room and she's doing her nails chewing gum while listening to her favorite disco music. Some of you bosses are getting stressed already. I look around and notice the waste baskets are overflowing. The carpet hasn't been vacuumed for weeks and nobody seems concerned that the owner has arrived. I ask about your whereabouts and someone in the crowd lounge area points down to the hall and says, I think he's down there. Disturbed to say the least, I move in that direction and bump into you as you're finishing a chess game with your sales manager. I ask you to step into my office which has been temporarily turned into a television room for watching the afternoon soap operas. I ask, what in the world is going on? You reply, what do you mean?

Well, look at this place. Didn't you get any of my letters? To which they respond letters. Oh yes.

Sure, we got every one of them. As a matter of fact, we had a letter study every Friday night since you left. We have been dividing up into personal small groups and discussing many of those things you wrote. Some of those things were really interesting. In fact, you'll be pleased to know that a few of us have actually committed to memory sentences and even paragraphs of your letters.

Okay, okay, you got my letters. You studied them, meditated and even memorized some of them. But what did you do about them? To which he responds, do we didn't do anything about them? And friends, this is the fear of being a hero of the word of God. Perhaps even going to small groups, perhaps even studying and memorizing the word of God, but not applying the word of God. And listen to how Jesus refers to the person who does this in verse 26. He says, and everyone that heareth these things of mine and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a what kind of man? A foolish man. The Greek word used for foolish here is the word morass. You want to guess what English word we get from that? Y'all got it, right? So Jesus saying, if you're a here and not a doer, you're a moron.

Does that sound a little heavy? That's Jesus preaching. If you hear the word and don't do it, you're moronic. Anybody ever been a moron before? Okay, we've all been a bunch of morons at times. We just don't want to remain as morons. It's moronic. It's foolish.

This is building on the sand. You're facing devastation. Now we know that works don't save us, right?

I mean, how clear is that? Ephesians 2 8 9 says this, and it tells us there's two things that cannot save you in these two verses. For by grace are you saved through faith in two things, and that not of yourself, it is a gift of God and not of works, lest any man would boast. There's two things that cannot save you, your works and yourself. So if you remove your works and yourself, what do you have to offer God?

The answer is nothing. The only thing you could do at that point is cry out for mercy. Then God give me what I can't earn and what only you can give me. And though works do not save you, listen very closely. True salvation is a working salvation. Living faith will always produce living fruit. Living faith doesn't produce dead fruit. It produces living fruits, and a dead faith doesn't produce living fruit. A dead faith produces dead fruit. You know, one key difference between building on a rock and sand is this building on sand would be very easy.

Real easy to work with sand, a lot harder to work with rocks. And what you see in this is the realm of easy believism, cheap salvation. Oh, it's easy to get on the broad road, isn't it?

It's wide, it's comfortable. Pray a prayer, have an intellectual belief in God you're in, recite these words, you're good to go. That is a sandy foundation, which we refer to as easy believism.

At LBC, we reject that. A simple intellectual salvation, which says you just need to believe and pray this prayer, you'll be good to go. You're basically in one of two camps, either you believe in what's known as easy believism or you believe in what we might refer to as lordship salvation.

Let me give you a couple of differences. Easy believism teaches that you can just simply have a belief in the gospel. That is salvation.

It's intellectual. It rejects repentance. You don't have to repent. You simply believe the information, pray the prayer, you're saved. Lordship salvation says that's not enough. Salvation is not intellectual.

It is an issue of the will. It is the difference between knowing the truth and surrendering to the truth. False attacks on lordship salvation say it is a workspace salvation. If you believe in lordship salvation, you believe in a workspace salvation. That is so entirely false.

Nobody at lighthouse believes in a workspace salvation. To say that about us is as erroneous and ridiculous as someone saying to us, if you believe a living true living tree should have living fruit, then you believe that the fruit gives life to the tree. Obviously, fruit doesn't give life to the tree and works do not give salvation to the soul. But if a tree is alive, if the root is alive, it will produce living fruit in the same way of salvation is real. If Jesus is in us and gave us salvation, he will produce saving fruit in our life.

Does that make sense? In opposition, lordship salvation, men like Jack Hiles wrote exactly what do we mean when we say lordship salvation? We are talking about the false doctrine that says that in order for a person to be saved, he must make Jesus the Lord of his life in quote.

Does that sound odd to anyone else? He calls it the false doctrine that says that in order to be saved, a person must make Jesus the Lord of his life. So according to guys like Jack Hiles, you can have a lordless salvation. You could say Jesus is not my Lord, but I'm saved. I believe Jesus died on the cross.

I prayed a prayer. I'm going to go to heaven, but Jesus is not my Lord. How does Jesus, how do you think Jesus would respond to that? You know at verse 21 of Matthew seven says, I'll tell you how he'll respond. Not everyone that sayeth unto me, Lord, Lord shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he that what he did do with the will of my father, which is in heaven. If I would say to men like Jack Hiles, who's passed away years ago, but if I say to him, it's not everybody who calls the Lord shall be saved, but they that do the will of the father, that's going to be the ones who are truly saved. He would say, you believe in a Lord works based salvation, and I would say, I just quoted the Bible. It's literally what Jesus said. They twist the scriptures. Isn't that what he says in verse 24? Whosoever heareth these things of mine and doeth them, it's in the present tense in the Greek. It means that is your way of life.

You never stop that. Turn in your Bibles to James two. Let me just show you another portion of scripture that is imperative to this conversation. James chapter number two. Look at verse 14. James being the half brother of our Lord Jesus Christ says this.

He asks a great question. What does it profit my brethren though a man say he hath faith? He says it. Oh, I believe in Jesus. I believe he's Lord. I confessed him as Lord.

I believe, I believe. He says he has faith and have not works. Can faith save him or in other words, can that kind of a faith, a verbal faith that has no evidence can that kind of a faith save him? Then he gives an illustration to help us understand what a words based faith without a works based fruit would be. He says in verse 15 if a brother or sister be naked and destitute of daily food, what are you saying to him? The part in peace be warmed and filled notwithstanding. You give him not those things which are needful to the body.

What does it profit? Somebody shows up your house, they're half dressed, they're starving. You say, be warmed and be filled.

Oh, be clothed and have food. God bless you and you shut the door. What did you benefit him?

You gave him good words, but you gave him no benefit, right? Look what he says in verse 17. Even so faith, if it hath not works is what?

It's dead being alone. Oh, we believe in salvation by faith. We do believe in sola fide that faith is by grace through faith, but we believe true saving faith cannot and must not be divorced from the fruit of salvation, which is true fruit that is produced from true faith. Charles Ryrie in response to this says unproductive faith cannot save because it is not genuine faith. Faith and works are like a two coupon ticket to heaven.

The coupon of works is not good enough to get to heaven, and the coupon of faith is not valid if detached from works. He goes on in James 2 18 and it says, yay, a man may say thou has faith and I have worked. Show me thy faith without thy works.

I'll show you the my faith by my works. Verse 19 you believe that there is one God you do well. You're orthodox. You're a monotheist.

Great. You have an intellectual understanding that's accurate. Well, devils believe that and they even tremble. Not only is their faith intellectual, but demons faith is also emotional. You haven't even got to the faith of demons yet. He says, but verse 20, but will thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is what he says it three times between verse 14 to 22. Again, works do not save you, but a true salvation works. Fruit doesn't bring life to the tree. It just reveals there's life in the tree that makes sense. How is this?

Is this clear enough? First John two verse three says this, and hereby do we know that we know him. How we keep his commandments. He that sayeth, I know him and keepeth in the present tense keepeth. They continually do not keepeth not his commandments. What does John say about him?

He is a what? He's a liar, and the truth is not him, but who so keepeth his word in him verily is the love of God perfected. Hereby do hereby know we that we are in him. Let me ask you this is your salvation and obedient salvation.

I know some of us have loved ones who've made profession of faith, and I know this is difficult. But I talked to a couple people after the service this morning. Couple parents came to me and they we prayed together and some of you have Children. Maybe you have parents. Maybe you have siblings.

Maybe you have friends. They prayed to receive Jesus, didn't they? They maybe were involved in a church for a good portion of time. They may be even worked as a leader at some level, but today they have no faith that's visible. Some of them have even outright denied the Lord. I don't believe the Bible. I don't believe. I don't believe we what we do is parents and friends. So often we attach their salvation to a past set of supposedly salvation fruit.

Jesus says that's not where it is. All of these. You need to understand all of these verbs are in the present tense. They keep doing it. They don't wander away from the Good Shepherd. They don't leave him. They went out from us because they were not of us. The reason I need to tell you that is because some of us guarantee our loved ones salvation when they're not truly saved. But, Pastor, they were I understand that. That's why he says in verse 22 of Matthew seven, many will say, Lord, did we prophesy your name and cast out devils and do many wonderful works? Look at what he did in verse 22. This is like this is what Judas did.

He did miracles. He preached and Jesus said, I never knew you. He didn't say I knew you and I lost you. You can't lose your salvation. He says, I never knew you. Verse 23 depart from me. Look what he says. You that work iniquity. Your life was not defined by someone who obeyed me, who did what I asked.

Your life was defined by your lusts. Does this make sense? Is it heavy?

Yeah, it's heavy. But you know what the most loving thing you can do your family, friends, loved ones, kids, parents, whoever that person may be that's on your heart right now is to tell them the truth. Send them last Sunday sermon. Send them this sermon. Say, Hey, you know, one great way you and I can evangelize is just propagate these kind of sermons.

Get on our social media sites instead of getting all political or getting all this and that and throwing baby pictures on, which again, you can do all those things. Fine. Great. But better that you spread the word of God, right?

Anybody agree with that? Okay, so, so propagate that. Well, man, if I if I post that message, people know I'm a Christian. Yeah.

That's a kind of a heavy message. It offended me. Good.

Good. Don't we need don't we need convicted if we're out of line with God? I mean, wouldn't we rather find out now before it's too late? Anybody want to have a preacher that's going to tell you what the Bible says so that when you get to heaven, you're not going to be shocked by Jesus's words. Or do we want to get to heaven feeling real great about ourselves like these guys in verse 22 and find out, man, I was dead wrong with Jesus because that pastor was more worried about making me feel good than telling me the truth.

I would encourage you to spread that message. There's got to be some evidence, friends, and if it was real 10 years ago, 20 years ago, their salvation would still be real today. I can tell you there's a lot of people who profess Christ that don't possess him there. Matthew 13. Jesus talks about him.

The seed goes in. They have fruit for a while, but when the cares of this world or the deceitfulness of riches or trials come, they bail out. God tests the genuineness of their faith with the world and with with trials, challenges to their life, and that proves if they're saved or not. If you're saved, you don't give Jesus up for the world, the culture, materialism, lust, fornication, adultery, passions, drugs, addictions, and you don't give Jesus up when times get hard.

One of the evidence is one of the blessings of trials and difficulties in our life is it evidences that you're saved. I mean, this morning we have a dear widow that's sitting on the front row, one of the dear members of our church, her precious husband of 60 years that they have been together. He raised her. That's what he would have said, but even through the loss of her precious husband, and it's not a loss because we know where he is. He's with the Lord, but she clings to Christ. She clings to the word, and that's what true salvation evidence is, and let me give you one last thing and we'll be done. Thirdly, true salvation will weather the storm of divine judgment. Jesus concludes with two opposing outcomes. What is interesting is both houses face the storm. Both will stand before God's judgment.

One will last and one will not. One was a hearer and one was a hearer as well as a doer, and notice the one who heard the word but didn't do anything about it. Look at verse 27.

This is a guy and girl that could sit in church. They could hear the message, even amen it, but they just leave unchanged. They come in having living in fornication, hear the message, leave, and they'll go home and sleep around with their girlfriend, boyfriend. They'll just continue that way.

The person in active addiction, the person active known sin, the person lying and stealing, and the person just continually living in sin. They're just going to continue to do it, but oh, I agree with Josh, and you think agreement without surrender is the same thing, and it's not. Just because you can believe it with all your heart doesn't mean you're saved. There is a surrender of the will.

There is a dethroning of self. You could aim in this till the day of your death, but it's not until you say, Christ, I give you my life, and you can tell when that happens to people. What would you have me to do, Lord?

It's typically what comes out of their life. Whatever you want me to do, Lord. Notice what Jesus says in verse 27.

This is just extremely potent. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon the house. This is the longest sermon Jesus ever is recorded of giving in scripture, and beat upon the house, and look how he ends it. And it fell, and great was the fall of it.

Great was the fall of it. Massive conclusion. Jesus exits the stage. He doesn't end with a joke. He doesn't end with a funny story.

He doesn't end with, hey, everybody, have a great day. Thank you for coming. God bless you.

Enjoy the weather. There should be some bread. There should be some manna down there.

We got fish on the stove. There's none of that. Jesus says, and the person who's a fool, who hears this today and doesn't apply it, your life will be devastated for all of eternity. I believe that every gospel presentation needs to come with a dire warning.

The warning is not this. If you don't give your life to Jesus, your life, you're just missing out. God could do so much with your life. He could change your marriage. He could bless your children. He could really prosper your life.

He could really help you through some of these things. But if you just gave your life to Jesus, your life would really be enhanced. That's not the warning. The warning is this.

If you don't give your life to the Lord Jesus Christ, you're going to stand before Him on judgment day and you will have rejected Him as Lord of your life and you will be cast out of His presence for eternity in a real hell where the people in hell plead that others wouldn't come there because it's a place of torments. You need to know that. I mean, what doctor who knows their cancer patient will die if they don't take the remedies would say, you know what? Have a wonderful day. This could have improved your life, but God bless you.

A good doctor would plead with you. Say, listen, do you understand the magnitude of the decision you're making? There's a warning friends. Jesus ends with a warning. He ends with eternal an eternal warning that if you don't get right, the consequences, devastation. But just as the, um, the warning is severe to the lost soul, the comfort is great to the saved.

I love verse 25. The rain descended, the floods came, the winds blew and beat up on the house and guess what? It didn't fall because it was on the rock. And guess what held you up?

It's not you. It's the word of God. True believers last. They remain.

They do not fall and ultimately fall away. It doesn't mean you're perfect, but it means he keeps you. The Bible says he's able to keep you and to present you faultless before his throne of grace. He is able to keep you from falling and to present you for us.

That's what God does. In John 10 27 he gives us eternal life. We will never perish.

No one's going to pluck us out of his hand. John 17 12 Jesus said, I kept them in thy name. Those that thou gave us to me I have kept and none of them is lost. If any of those who got saved were lost, it wasn't the person who failed. It was Jesus who failed him. If you could believe you could lose your salvation, you believe Jesus can fail a person. Whatever saves you is whatever keeps you. If you can save yourself, you've got to keep yourself. But if you're saved by grace, guess what?

You're sustained by grace. John 18 verse nine that the saying might be fulfilled which he spake of them which thou gave us me have I lost none. But didn't Judas wasn't he lost? Yeah, but he was never one of Christ's.

He said he knew from the beginning who was his and who was not. If you're saved today, you will never lose your salvation. You're kept by the power of God. First Peter one five says you're kept by the power of God through faith into salvation. Ephesians four 30 grieve not the Holy Spirit of God whereby you're settled into the day of redemption. Philippians one six. He who began a good work in you will be faithful to perform it to the day of Jesus Christ. Romans eight.

What can separate you from the love of God? Romans eight one. You're under no condemnation.

No one can condemn you. Romans eight 32 through 36 just all over the Bible. First John five 13 God wrote these things that if you believe in the name of the son of God, it says that you can know you have eternal life. And so in conclusion, I asked, Do you love God's word? Do you desire to know his word?

Or are you here today and say, You know what? I come to church. I hear the message. You have no desire to read. You have no desire to apply what's read. You have a hearing faith. You have a verbal faith, but there is no life surrendering faith. You need to fear this morning.

You need to be uncomfortable by this. Jesus. Jesus is warning you.

He is warning you. Are you saved? Well, examine yourself in light of what in light of the scriptures. I would challenge you to read First John every single day. First John was written that you might know you have eternal life. When you read it, those who were saved feel good.

Those who are not feel very convicted. Do you have an obedient face to God's word? Do you desire to honor the word of God is your life defined by a love for Christ or a love for yourself and what you would desire?

You may have faith, but would Jesus say your faith is living or dead? I'm saved, but I won't get baptized. Well, then you need to question whether you're truly saved, because how would you disobey God in that?

If you're saved, you would follow him. I'm saved, but I won't forgive, really. So you're gonna not forgive somebody after Jesus forgave you. Then you have an disobedient faith. Why would you think that you're truly saved if you're never willing to forgive? I'm saved, but I'm living in sexual fornication. You may have a PhD in hearing the word of God, but Jesus says here's don't get in. But Jesus say your faith is obedient again. No one is perfect.

No one here is lived a perfect life, nor will anyone live a perfect life. The Bible tells us that we will all fall short. But when you're saved, the direction of your life is toward Christ's word and obedience.

And when you fall, you're falling forward as you follow him. Today, as you examine your life in light of this sermon, would you say, Christ, I know I'm saved. Praise God. Or do you say, boy, I'm just not quite sure.

And if you're not sure, why don't you get that settled today? We have men and women. We have prayer rooms right to my right, my left. We have men and women up front.

You could just walk forward. We had seven souls come last Sunday, one who came this morning confessing Christ. If you're not sure of that, why don't you sit down? We have people who can talk with you through the scriptures and show you from the word of God how you can get that settled today. If you are saved, I guarantee you there's some of us who have family and friends that we know that may not be saved.

They've professed it, but it doesn't show in their life. Why don't you come and pray, whether at your seat or at an altar, and say, God, give me courage, give me wisdom, give me clarity to share the truth with them as you would have me to. We need to pray for them. Amen. And then we need to share. Let's all stand this morning.

The altar is open. If God's spoken to you, you're welcome to come at this time. Father, we thank you for your word. It's truly, it is our wisdom. It is our light.

It is our understanding. And God, I pray now that you would open eyes and ears to the reality of who you are and who they are. And if anyone today doesn't know Christ, that today would be the day of salvation. Be glorified, not simply in how we hear the word, but in how we obey it. Lord, I pray today, if anyone doesn't know Christ, that today would be that day of salvation. And be with our families, our friends, our loved ones, those who've perhaps made a profession, but they just don't show the evidence of that salvation. Give us love, grace, wisdom to share with them the truth of your word. We ask it in Christ's name.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-25 08:44:37 / 2023-02-25 09:08:03 / 23

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