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March 25, 2021 1:00 am
When a man is clinging to a life preserver, he knows he needs help. He knows he is not self-sufficient. But in today’s culture, many people get offended if you tell them there’s nothing they can do to make themselves look good before a holy God. The gospel tells us how God set out to rescue those that believe in His Son from spiritual death. Do you know how badly we need that rescue?Click here to listen (Duration 25:02)
Looking to Jesus. Her man is clinging to a life preserver. He knows he needs help or else. Still, many people did you tell them there's nothing they can do to make themselves look good before a holy God. The gospel tells us how God set out to rescue from spiritual goes believe in his son.
How badly we need rescue from the Moody Church in Chicago this morning to with Dr. Erwin looks her teaching helps us get across the finish line. As the old song says. I was thinking soon most don't even know what you know Dave, I think that's a tragedy.
You and I lived at a time when those old gospel songs were sung, but the younger generation doesn't know about them. I was sinking deep in sin, far from the peaceful shore and then it goes on to talk about how Jesus Christ rescued us and I might say this that your understanding of sin will determine the way in which you understand the gospel.
Glad I could expound on that. But let me simply point out to all who are listening that even Christian parents often times do not raise their children. The cell phone does in the cell phone in your teenagers hand does more to shape his or her view of reality in her worldview, then not an hour of Sunday school and in our church. That's the way my chapter begins, entitled the sexualization of children and this is in my new book entitled, we will not be silenced responding courageously to our culture's assault on Christianity and we are being assaulted by the way, for a gift of any amount.
This book can be yours. Here's what you do go to RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337 and now we have the privilege of once again opening God's holy word to the book of Romans, so that we might deeply appreciate the fact that we have been rescued so the gospel the substance of the gospel is Jesus Christ and what he did for us. What is the scope of the gospel. Let's look at verse 14. He says I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians. What he means is the educated and the uneducated. I I have to smile here at this point you'll have to forgive me but about 20 years ago I was invited to Barbados the island of Barbados where I spoke. I think some of you know what's coming, don't you your laughing already. Where I spoke at a Bible conference and I said how wonderful it was to be among the barbarians and I think the correct word was Barbadian and I said barbarians now everybody laughed.
They were very kind but maybe I should point out in passing that I've never been invited back. No, the apostle Paul says I am called not only to preach to the Greeks to the educated.
I am called to preach also to those who are uneducated and guess what the message for the educated, the Greeks and the message for the I hope I get it right this time the barbarians is the very same message because there is only one message and no matter what religion you belong to.
No matter what your background is, no matter the color of your skin or where you were born, there is only one gospel, and it applies to you around a lot of Gospels hanging out there some other message because you fit into different categories.
Paul is not saying he's gonna pay back what God has done nothing like that. But what he saying is I feel an obligation to preach the gospel to every body just like you and I should feel an obligation to share the gospel with everybody coworkers whatever and then Paul says in verse 16 for I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek why Jew first. Well, the Jews were chosen of God the whole Old Testament is based on a Jewish understanding and revelations that God gave to the Jewish people, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
So in a sense they were first but following close behind to the Greek, and Paul means basically to everyone, this is the gospel for notice what the text says to everyone. Everyone who believes, and then he says, for in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith as it is written, the righteous shall live by faith.
Now the reason that the gospel is the power of God unto salvation. The reason for that is because you and I can't change human nature can we can now try to motivate people.
We can help them to see how they can alter their behavior how they can begin to try to manage their temper and manage their sins and we can help them do that. But we cannot get down to the level of desire. We cannot change the affections of the human heart. You cannot go to the human heart and turn it on and on like a faucet on or off and and suddenly have people love God and then say I'm going to wake up this morning and I'm going to start the love God and Jesus. You can't do that. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation because it actually changes our motivations and our desires.
It's an old illustration that preachers used to use but I will throw it in here still story of taking a pagan island dressing him putting on a bow tie, making sure that he's nice and clean and you do everything that you possibly can.
But the minute he begins to see a mud puddle and dirt you know where he will be you and I need a hand from heaven. We need God's intervention actually change human nature. Jesus referred to it as the new birth and said that unless you are born again, you will never enter the kingdom of God. So I ask you today. Have you been born again. I'm not asking you if you are baptized because you don't get born again by being baptized or that you belong to a church or that you did this and this is a miracle of God whereby something new is created with in us, that wasn't there before.
We believe, and so you have the miracle that takes place within. But then there's another miracle that takes place representing the power of God and that takes place outside of us. It is God's declaration of his righteousness. Look at what the text says here, for in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith. You see, there is a righteousness that belongs to God as his attribute, but there is also a righteousness which God gives to those who believe, so that something intervenes between us and the anger of God against sin and that something is the work of Christ and the righteousness that he credits to us who believe in an Darien. As we shall see in future messages there in is the power and the wisdom and the glory and the wonder of God, and God says this is the gospel. The power of God for salvation. Paul says I'm not ashamed of this gospel.
Why would anybody be ashamed of a message like this.
Well, just think about it for a moment, have you as a Christian ever been ashamed of Jesus had you kept your mouth shut because you don't want to be branded as strange or weird that you believe that salvation comes through Jesus Christ.
You see there's something offensive about a crucified Messiah. In fact, there are religions who tell us that the fact that Jesus was crucified proves that he was he was weak. How can he be a Redeemer so there's that problem. The problem is that the gospel doesn't speak very highly of our own ability because it's saying that we cannot attain the righteousness of God on our own. It's not something that we are able to do just like you can add alien oranges and never get up banana in the very same way all the human righteousness that is ever been done on planet Earth cannot change God's mind regarding a single center and that message doesn't go down easily to human beings who are versed in this idea. Look at what I've done and look at my works and how good I am, though, if you talk to their friends. They may have a very different opinion. So that's that's the reason why it is easy to be ashamed. The pulses look simple, though it is. I'm not ashamed of the gospel is the power of God when I was working on this message. I thought to myself, you know I'm preaching a very simple message here, and I have always prayed that God would keep me simple in my staff thinks that he's overdone it. They're saying stop stop praying that prayer is a very simple message.
I was reminded of the fact that it is the power of God unto salvation to all who believe and I'm really preaching today, however, hopelessly or insufficiently. I am preaching the power of God unto salvation because that's what the gospel is how do we wind all of this down and help us to summarize the effects in the power of the gospel. First of all, would you keep in mind that the gospel is God's plan, not ours. It's his plan, not ours. You know, getting back to the question with which I began, namely what's the uniqueness about Christianity. The average person thinks that all the religions of the world are essentially the same and only superficially different. I'd like to turn that around and say that the opposite is true that all of the religions of the world.
If you compare them with Christianity are essentially different and only superficially the same.
They mail believe in God. They may have some similarities. Morally and ethically. But what they do not have is a God who chose to intervene who didn't work on our behalf who grants us a gift that he himself worked out and it is not given to the rich. It is not given to those who are are able to be well-educated. It is given to anyone who believes as a free gift of necessity free and and there is no other religion that has that so remember that that it's God's plan. It is God's good news and I do have good news for you today thanks to God's holy word.
So first of all, keep in mind that the gospel is God's plan, not ours.
Secondly, the gospel is not just information. I see some of you writing this down and I need to tell you that I see that I am looking at people who are going to be well rewarded in heaven. Thank you for writing this down because this is important. The Bible is not just information. It is intervention its intervention.
There is information as to what you need to believe but but it's not just hey, here's something to believe and then try to work on known and unknown, it is it is the intervention of God breaking in to our sinful selves and saving us.
That's what it is Seneca was a philosopher and a statesman who lived at the same time as the apostle Paul Seneca for all of his other abnormalities. Perhaps did understand something and that is that human beings are desperate sinners.
I want to quote his words, men are overwhelmingly conscious of their weaknesses, and he says we need a hand, let down from heaven to lift us up another person quoting him, perhaps a paraphrase said old hand would come down from heaven and will rescue me from my be setting, sin when you're desperate you don't need more information.
Only what you really need is intervention.
You need God to intervene in your life. That's what the gospel is some of you are struggling with addictions and those addictions are really symptomatic of a more basic problem that we have as human beings and that is our selfishness and our penchant for always going with our own desires.
You need the intervention of God today.
Some of you are going through a time of meaninglessness and hopelessness and you also need the intervention of God today and the message to you is the gospel as well. Some of you overcome by guilt, frustration, anger because of your past because of what is taken place because of what you've done and perhaps even what others have done to you.
You also need God's intervention today and that's what the gospel is not just more information. It is God who was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself, bringing us into fellowship with all mighty God, and only the gospel can do that and in subsequent message that will become more clear and more clear as we go along. There is no other option out there, but the gospel of Jesus Christ and so please keep that in mind. Finally, let us say also that the gospel is costly to God. It's costly to God but it is free to us.
It is given to those who believe, from faith to faith. As we shall learn as it says here in the text.
The righteous shall live by faith, quoting the Old Testament book of Habakkuk, and so it is really a free gift given to those who believe those who recognize a I've given up the weapons of a rebel lie. I can save myself. I come In the hand as a beggar I bring nothing to the table except my sin. That's my contribution my contribution is my sin.
But even though my contribution is my sin. God's contribution is his gift of righteousness to me is gift of the miracle of the new birth I said earlier, how do you know whether or not you are Caldwell the only way really. You can find out whether or not your coldest believe on Jesus and if you if you come and trust him and are born again, that will prove that you are the called of Jesus Christ.
There's no other way to find out and so I encourage you to do do that.
So today let's just understand that it cost God plenty because we were redeemed not with corruptible things such as silver and gold, but with the precious blood of Christ.
God gave his son and he died for us and went through the agony of Gethsemane and the cross that was costly to God but it's not costly to us.
That's why it's such good news because you and I can't contribute to what God needs any way we can only receive, we cannot we cannot think that our giving somehow impresses him and so I encourage you today. Stop trusting what you can do. Stop trusting what you can do and begin to trust what God has already done in Jesus that is the good news and that is the gospel Chicago in many regards is a very religious town you go to many many churches today in Chicago that will tell you this Jesus Christ is absolutely necessary for salvation will tell you what they will not tell you is that Jesus Christ is enough for salvation and I'm here today to tell you that is not only necessary, he's enough.
And so we can sing. I have no other argument I need no other plea. It is enough die, that he died for me. It's enough that he died in his. He took that bread and took the cup and set this drink in remembrance of me and eat in remembrance of me.
He was saying to all of us today in that blood and the broken body.
There is enough done for the vilest of sinners who truly believes that moment from Jesus apart receive that is very good news. Let's bow together in prayer father at this point we have nothing more to say except to trust your Holy Spirit because in this congregation today. Undoubtedly there are many never received the gift of salvation. Talk about good people who sometimes are the last to see their need. I pray that you might cause them to see the gospel today with new clarity to comment to say I'm a sinner. I can save myself I bring nothing to this except my need and I receive your grace. Thank you for the hand from heaven that saves us, and that Jesus isn't just necessary.
He really is enough. We love him and his name… And has a Lutheran, my friend.
If you've never come to saving faith in Jesus Christ.
This is the moment to do it.
You recognize your sinfulness and then the good news that Jesus Christ did it all for those who believe and if we trust him. Oh how grateful I am to be able to tell you he is enough. We never get over the wonder of the gospel, but I also need to emphasize that we are losing the new generation aren't we.
They are moving away from the gospel. They are into social justice Samet affect our schools often times sexualize our children, which incidentally is the title of one of the chapters in my new book entitled, we will not be silenced. It's entitled the sexualization of children.
That's where I discussed transgender is him. Did you know that there's a doctor who said that if someone comes to him and they want transgender surgery. If he were to say no, even though he thinks that it would be best for them if they didn't, he could lose his job were living at a time when there are cultural screens that are so powerful and so deceptive in our young people and others are being caught up in that culture. That's why I wrote the book entitled, we will not be silenced responding courageously to our culture's assault on Christianity.
My burden is for the church. How do we answer these objections, how do we stand against a culture that wants to engulf us for a gift of any amount. This book can be yours.
Here is what you do go to RTW offer.com that's RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337 RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337. I know for another chance for you to ask Pastor lutes or a question about the Bible or the Christian life. What was Jesus like after God raised him from the dead. Jan lives in Schaumburg, Illinois and listens to us on W MBI she's asking was Jesus flesh and spirit, or just spirit after the resurrection. Jan I want you to know that when Jesus was raised from the dead. He was both. By that I mean he obviously had a body. It wasn't flesh like we understand the word flash, but you remember when the disciples thought that he was a spirit he said handle me. He said for a spirit does not have flesh and bones.
Now his body was glorified and therefore it was not subject to decay. The molecular structure was very different from ours.
But remember this, he ate fish he communicated with his disciples, he was able to appear and then disappear because we'll be able to do that in our new bodies. Also, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is, so he wasn't spirit in the sense perhaps that you meant it as if he was a ghost.
No, he was flesh. As a human being. He had a spirit, but it's not as if his body was just a spirit very important in the Bible says.
Someday we will appear with him in glory and will have a body like unto his.
That's why we believe in the resurrection. If all that we believed in was the spirit way is somehow if people come back, spiritually speaking, then why even bother about the idea of raising the body. The body will be raised because we believe that very body will be remade by God and we shall inhabited throughout all eternity. Thank you Janet, thank you Dr. lutes.
Or if you'd like to hear your question answered. Go to our website and RTW offer.com and click on ask Pastor lutes or or call us at 1-888-218-9337 that's 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us at running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 in Romans, we see ourselves as we really are.
Apart from God's grace we are capable of awful things. Next time the amazing light. God sends into those hearts come to believe in Jesus running to win is sponsored by the Moody Church