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December 30, 2020 1:00 am
Jesus said, “Everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. If the Son sets you free, you shall be free indeed.” That’s great news! Freedom is more than avoiding jail. Freedom is living without the shackles of sin.Click here to listen (Duration 25:02)
One wasn't doing his reason for us, looking to Jesus longer. Remember, Jesus said, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The sun set you free, you shall be free and that's great news. Freedom is living without the shackles of sin and its penalty from the church in Chicago. This is to win with Dr. Sir, whose clear teaching helps us make it across the finish line. Esther leads her as you continue a four-part series on "Jesus brought to us tell us which gift is in view today. What is really the gift of freedom. Freedom of forgiveness, the freedom of walking in obedience to God. That's what it's all about.
You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free. You know I have in my hand a letter from someone who was listening to running to win in Portugal. She writes I live in a village of 11 people in the mountains of central Portugal where no one speaks English. You are my church. I listen to running to win podcasts whenever I can, in case you don't already know it. Running to win exists to get the gospel of Jesus Christ to as many people as possible. Would you consider making a special gift to this ministry, as we near the end of the year. Here's what you can do go to offer MCM.com that's offer MCM.com or you can call right now will give you an opportunity to pick up that pencil you can call right now 1-888-218-9337 that's 1-888-218-9337. Now let's go to the pulpit of Moody church where we learn about the freedom that only Jesus can bring to us sinners. While all of us have birthdays and I'm sure we are glad when other people recognize that they acknowledge our a some of us are to the point when our kids want to blow out the candles on the cake to get pushed back as of the flame but nonetheless we all delight in the fact that people remember our birth, but there is no birthday.
That is ever been remembered with as much detail as the birthday of Jesus Christ and that only makes sense because he is a very unusual child. His birth was unusual.
He was born of a virgin.
You know sometimes it is said by those who are critical of Christianity that there are other miraculous birth stories and pagan literature that's true but they're very different. For example, it is said that Alexander the great had a miraculous birth well after a person becomes famous people look back and then they invent these mythologies, Jesus Christ. Miraculous birth was predicted and mentioned right at the beginning. The other great difference is that these other stories are filled with degrading comments and degrading information about God's eye. Having a sexual relationship with women. Then suddenly you have a miraculous birth when you read the New Testament account. You discovered that it is they, in holiness, the Bible says that an angel came to a virgin and said that which is created within you is of the Holy Spirit. Jesus had an unusual birth. We also had an unusual amount of the criticism and hostility. Imagine what happened.
We have course, think of the tremendous tragedy in Newtown, Newtown, Connecticut.
And yet, we have to remember that Jesus Christ birth elicited so much hostility that Herod remember he killed all of the babies that were in Bethlehem. The baby boys two years age of and under hoping that he'd kill Jesus.
Imagine a king being intimidated by the birth of the baby. He must've known that this was a very unusual baby to be sure Jesus had an unusual upbringing and then he has an unusual ministry in dies on the cross and then has an unusual resurrection well might we honor his birth, but you know when you stop to think of it, you realize that when we's and with the birth story, we often miss the heart of the Christmas story. Now let's take for example Abraham Lincoln who was born I believe in 1809, February 12.
Let's suppose that his father's name was Thomas his mother's name was Nancy. Let us suppose that all that we did in our history book is look at pictures of of where he was born in that one room log cabin in Kentucky and we stare at those and that's where Dan's. The reason that we might be interested in the birth of Lincoln and the date in which he was born and where he was born is because of who he turned out to be and what did and that is true also of the story of Jesus. It doesn't and in Bethlehem. And that's why today I want to move beyond the manger to the actual man and this is part of a series of messages. Actually, the last in a four-part series on gifts that Jesus brought to us. We talked about the gift of life. 10 the gift of life and the gift of love. Today the gift of liberty or freedom.
That's what I'm going to be speaking about, and this really is an exposition of the words of the angel when the angel came to Mary and to Joseph and said he shall be great, and shall be called the son of the most high, and then the text says in Matthew chapter 1. He came to save his people from their sins, to bring freedom from sin and that's why we're moving beyond of the Bethlehem story today to an encounter that Jesus had with some Jews, some of those were the sons of Abraham in the eighth chapter in the eighth chapter of the book of John and this is a very testy encounter and were going to be digging into it and seeing what this deliverance that the angel promised is really all about John chapter, a time picking it up at verse 31 so Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, and by the way its page 894. If you have a Bible that is there in the seat ahead of you. Page 894 so Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him. If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free. They answered him where the offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone how is it that you say you will become free. Jesus answered, truly, truly, I say to you everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin.
The slave does not remain in the house forever. The sun remains forever. So if the son sets you free, you will be free in. I know that you are Abraham's offspring, yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you. I speak of what I had seen with my father and you do what you have heard from your father, what an amazing statement as we shall see in a moment that Jesus made know what we like to do in the next few moments is to go on a fact-finding trip about truth that really sets people free.
He shall save his people from their sins. First of all, let us notice the truth exists, truth exists, Jesus said you shall know the truth when I was going to school it was said that truth is really the consensus of a lot of people there sociological truth today of course in postmodernism. Everyone has his own truth, there is my truth. There is your truth and my thoughts are true simply because I think them it's all fraught with contradiction and impossibilities but people are willing to believe an awful lot of stuff to justify what they want to do something and that's where we are at, you know, many years ago, and that's many years ago. I'm estimating maybe 40 years ago. I was then talking to a parishioner in another church and she was sitting beside someone in University who wrote a paper of two pages on why there is no truth and she gave it to me to read. I answered in about two lines and said if there is no truth.
I know in advance that the paper that you have written falls as a matter of fact, if you are consistent. You'd never open your mouth because the moment you do we know that you're saying something other than truth, so she gave it to him and she never heard about him. He never said a word to her the entire semester which was really consistent with his view of truth, I might say truth has universality 2+2 is equal to four. That's true in India. It's true all over the world. Truth has consistency.
There's no such thing as a logical contradiction contradiction is a Charlie horse between the ears.
Nobody can believe a contradiction. Truth also has other elements such as objectivity, there could be stars in the sky that we've never seen, but they are up there anyway and if they are there. That is true whether we've discovered it or not. Parenthetically, not sure that I heard it this year but other years I heard that you could buy somebody a star for Christmas that you know that's a great idea by somebody a star for Christmas and then invite them to go check on their property and if they don't like it you could guarantee they get their money back somebody's making some money on this thing selling people stars but anyway the stars exist whether we acknowledge it or not, know the truth that Jesus is talking about the religious truth is first of all his words. You'll notice what is word say if you abide in my word, you are my disciples and you will know the truth. Every word that proceeded out of the mouth of Jesus was a true word of thy word is truth. You want to find some truth read the Gospels and find out what Jesus had to say. But more than that. He said I am the way the truth and the life he embodies truth in him dwelt all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. That baby there in the manger in Bethlehem had all of the attributes of God. And when he was held in the arms of Joseph and Mary, and later on Simeon.
There was a part of Jesus that was invisible to the human eye, but in their hands.
They were holding in their arms. They were holding the son of God, whose nature was God of very God and man. Both in one person you know I've frequently referred to my daughter, her oldest daughter, you know the average kid asks. I think a half-million questions. By the age of about seven or eight I think our oldest daughter got to that road at about four years old but she said to him who was taking care of the world when God was a baby very good question who was taking care of the world when God was a baby. While that baby had the attributes of deity and God was still taking care of the world and Christ was still taking care of the world. No wonder the Bible says great is the mystery of godliness.
God was manifest in the flesh while there is such a thing as truth, look at Jesus who is the truth embodied while second truth can be known. You shall know the truth. Truth can be known. You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free. The knowledge of God. For example, is revealed most clearly through Jesus that we see the knowledge of God in the Old Testament. It is in Jesus that we see the father full of grace and truth.
And so Jesus comes to us and says you can know the truth now.
You can't know anything exhaustively.
In fact, we don't know everything about anything. Our knowledge is always limited and our knowledge of this infinite being called God our knowledge of God is always limited but it is meaningful. We can have a meaningful relationship with God that we don't understand all about him and so that's what Jesus offers. You shall know the truth and it's possible to know now let's look back at the text here what's happening in the text is he's talking to people who believe in him and then in verse 33. There are also some who don't. It's mixed company.
They answer him. We are the offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone how is it that you say you will become free. Then Jesus is everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin and then I'm skipping to verse 36 so if the sun set you free will be free indeed. But notice this verse 37. I know that you are Abraham's offspring, yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you.
I speak of what I have seen with my father and you do what you've seen of your father, and they say Abraham is our father. Now what's going on there in the text. Think of this.
These people are using their religiosity, their pedigree that goes all the way to Abraham. They are using that pedigree and their religion to keep them from Jesus from the truth from the truth about themselves from the truth about God and they are choosing bondage rather than freedom in the name of religion on a be candid here, religion is one can be one of the most deceptive shields that can become a mask that people wear so that they don't really have to deal with the truth about themselves and God and their need for redemption. So you people say well you know I'm okay. I attend Moody church or possibly I'm okay because I'm a Baptist or I'm okay because I'm a Catholic I attend the Catholic Church or I attend the Mormon church, whatever. And religion becomes a shield and even though that all may be true that they are committed to these various religions. The problem is that those become a shield to keep them from reality and acknowledging the truth about themselves and their need for a Redeemer see these people weren't able to see themselves and did Jesus said it's possible to know the truth.
Some of you do know the truth. Others of you will not receive the truth annual news religion to shield yourself from the truth.
That's what's happening here in the text, and it's something that all of us can fall into the hypoxic receipt of not dealing with who we are in God's presence. So Jesus said them.
You can know the truth, and then he says, and the truth will set you free. If you accept the truth that will set you free. Now let's look at this verse 32, an astounding statement you will know the truth and the truth will set you free. In other words, if the sun shall make you free. Jesus says now in verse 36 you're going to be free indeed. You're going to be fully free. Now your Bibles are open and I want you to see to contrast the Jesus now makes to contrast the first is between a slave and a son. Truly I say to you everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever. Why because he's not part of the family he may go to church but is not part of the family but the son he remains forever, because he is part of God's family. So the first contrast is between the slavery and son ship now. Think of how amazingly accurate. The Bible is the Bible has the most interesting. The most true analysis of human nature available that there are people today who think they are free and they are slaves to sin. Now if you're a slave you don't get up in the morning and begin to tell the owner what to do your master master begins to barked out orders at you and you had better follow through with them. That's the way some people's lives are. They don't have any control over the sins that entangle them and they may be sins of the flesh that we frequently speak about most assuredly those sins bind. Oh the depths of that binding you know Jesus is using an illustration here of someone who's imprisoned and you can imagine, you know during the Middle Ages there was a man who made chains and to put his insignia on every link and took pride in the fact that nobody could break one of his chains, and then he was imprisoned and noticed that he was actually bound by his own chain the Bible in the book of Proverbs talks about being bound by cords of sin.
Imagine somebody the chain is coming out of a concrete wall and it's wrapped around his leg and there he is in Jesus said that if you are a sinner committed to sin and you are actually only a slave and not a son. You are a slave to sin and it may be the sins of the flesh, it may be the sins of the spirit, you know, when you look at the religious people of the day. I wouldn't say that they were necessarily bound to sensual sins, but they were bound to the sin of self-righteousness, the sin of anger they need to be appreciated, the pride of the human heart and all of those sins of the spirit and Jesus said that if you commit and walk in that path you're going to become a slave to sin and what terrible slavery. It really is. But if you are a son let something different so because the sun is really truly free, Jesus the son of God is free, and he takes his sons and his daughters and he frees them if they are willing to accept the truth and this is the message of Christmas.
It's the message of Bethlehem that Jesus came to set us free. Even as the angel prophesied. Now that's the first contrast between a son and a a slave there's a second contrast and that has to do with two different fathers two different fathers. Jesus said them.
Verse 38 I speak of what I have seen with my father. That's the father in heaven and you do what you have heard from your father. They said Abraham is our father. Jesus said if you were Abraham's children, you would be doing what Abraham did, but now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth, but I heard from God is not what Abraham did. You are doing what your father did and so they go back and forth with Jesus and they say well you know our fathers Abraham and you are born implied of fornication. They say to Jesus. Now you have to brace yourself for this. Okay.
But Jesus didn't take that course how to win friends and influence people that came a little later as a little later than Jesus, and you may be offended by how plainly he speaks.
But that's exactly why we have to hear what he has to say he is speaking on behalf of the father had the words that he speaks or truths are you ready for them. You can brace yourself a little bit for this verse 44 you are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father's desires.
He was a murderer from the beginning and has nothing to do with the truth because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character for he's a liar and the father of lies. Because I tell you the truth. Jesus said you don't believe me while Jesus is saying now what about this imagery of fathers what's going on there in the text that has to do with the nature you see in what sense was the devil.
The father of these people. He was in this sense that they had his nature, which is the nature of deception and lies and these lies they told themselves so many times over and over that they began to believe lies about themselves that they were righteous in the sight of God because of their works. Unwilling to see their need of deep abiding redemption. You know my friend. I just want you to know that as I listen to the words of Scripture.
In the words of Jesus. I might put it bluntly, it's kind of scary to think that there are people who are believing lies in loving lies.
We hear it running to win exist to proclaim the truth as best we can and because of people like you.
God is enabled us to share the gospel of Jesus Christ around the world this past year, would you consider making a special gift to this ministry just want you to know that it exists not only in English but in Spanish and in Arabic. All of that because of people like you. Thanks in advance for helping us. Here's what you can do go to offer MCM.com as you've probably guessed, the MCM stands for Moody church media that's offer MCM.com or if you prefer you can call us at 1-888-218-9337 I'm going to give you that number again but let me tell you, you can pick up the phone and call right now.
Thank you to the many of you who are going to be helping us right now as we continue this ministry and anticipate the new year.
You can go to offer MCM.com or if you prefer, call us at 1-888-218-9337 thanks for joining hands with us.
We anticipate the new year and with God's help and blessing will continue to proclaim Christ, the one who brings us freedom. You can write to us running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 people in the bondage have the illusion that there free the Jews of Jesus day did not like being told that they needed deliverance next time. More about Jesus, the great river of freedom. This is Dave McAllister running to win is sponsored by the church