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A Discerning Heart Part 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
March 31, 2022 1:00 am

A Discerning Heart Part 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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March 31, 2022 1:00 am

We all must examine our hearts and find out what really motivates us. Judas shows us how far away we can fall from Christ, even though, to all observers, we seem to be children of God. In this message, we’ll give our attention to three life-changing lessons that we dare not forget as we look at the life of Judas. Only grace draws us to Christ, changes our motivations, and keeps us in the love of God.  

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Run with endurance the race is looking to Jesus, founder and perfecter of our it's good to pause the race of life long enough to examine one's heart and find out what really motivates us. Judas shows us how far away we can fall from Christ. Even though all observers, we seem to be children of God, the Moody Church in Chicago. This is running to win with Dr. Sir teaching helps us make it across the finish line after Luther were heading into John chapter 13 learn about the fateful moment when Satan entered into Judas Dave, you know, I've often contemplated that moment and I realize that Satan is not a gentleman.

He doesn't even need an invitation to enter Judas. Of course, being next to Christ, knowing that he was going to betray his master. He leaves the meeting and isn't it interesting that John says he left and it was night. What John meant by that was not only physical night outside, but the night of the soul, the darkness of the soul. And of course Satan took advantage of Judas's heart. It is a time for contemplation.

It is a time for asking what faithfulness looks like in the midst of a culture that wants us to betray ourselves. I've written a book entitled the church in Babylon and by the way, today's the last day, we are making this offer available to you. It'll be a resource that I think will be of great help for a gift of any amount. It can be yours now. It deals with a number of different topics that we are facing in our culture.

For example, the whole matter of the gospel, how we must shamelessly share its message with the world.

The last chapter is entitled the church that will survive in Babylon. Thanks in advance for helping us. If you want to contact us if you want this resource to be yours.

Go to RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 let us guard our hearts. Jesus warned us what might happen if we don't was customary to take a bit of mutton and to put it in the dish and to hand it to the honored guest and Jesus honors him by giving it to him and Judas receives it and it says in verse 27.

As soon as he took bread Satan entered into him.

Time for a pause in this message is time that we just talked. I taught I heart to heart life to life, truth to truth.

You notice it is not necessary to invite Satan in in order for him to come in. Judas did not have to say.

Satan please enter me, Satan entered because as long as Judas was going to do the work of the devil. The devil who does not play by rules who is not a gentleman who comes in uninvited simply began to take over and said you stand on my territory. You play my game and I have come to take charge Satan enters into him to give him the strength and the ability and the rationalizations to do what he needs to do because sitting there in the presence of the disciples, he did not even blush. Jesus said to him what you're going to do to quickly disciples don't know what Jesus is saying there still thinking that he's asking Judas to go and buy something what the text says verse 30 soon as Judas had taken the bread he went out and it was night. What John wants us to understand is that he who was now night goes into the blackness into the darkness because all of the night to that fateful evening in Jerusalem was now wrapped up in the heart of Judas whose heart tainted by Satan. The behavior of a saint heart of the devil. What was it that caused Judas to betray Christ hit a covetous heart get that money.

Whether you live forever. Whether you steal about it, whether you betray for it at all costs get than he had a deceitful mind that came along and said I'm going to go through the charade. I'm going to go through the game and play it in such a way that the other disciples will not even know who I really am. Jesus knows they want is 1/3 character flaw on that is a very determined wheel very determined will he has such a hard heart. Now at this point that he's determined to do several things. First of all he's determined to betray Jesus at all costs and the cost for him was hell. But at all cost. He will betray Jesus. We read in the book of Matthew how it went. While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the 12 arrived with him was a large crowd armed with swords and clubs sent from the chief priests and the elders of the people. Now the betrayer had arranged a signal with them. Notice this, the one I kiss is the man arrest him going at once to Jesus, Judas said, greetings Rabbi and kissed him.

Jesus ever the gentleman replies friend friend do what you've come to do what you've come to do a kiss. This man was so cunning yet so much ability that he was able to make treachery look like loyalty in the eyes of the people who were watching this. They thought doesn't doesn't Judas actually love Jesus. Those who weren't in on the plot probably thought so but in the midst of this high tension situation. He's willing to walk over to him and give him a kiss but it was the kiss of the trail determined hard will I shall do this no matter the cost. Will you know what happened, don't you early in the morning. All the chief priests and the elders of the people came to the decision to put Jesus to death.

They bound them and let them away and handed them over to pilot when Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the 30 silver coins to the chief priests and elders and said I've send private trade innocent blood. Judas, what's your problem you love money and you've got it see Judas could not see the remorse that was going to overtake him all that he could see is 30 silver coins and a good hedge against inflation and some money to be able to buy those things that normal people aren't able to buy to become a part of the upper crust.

That's what all that he could see what's his problem.

Now he's got he could not predict the remorse he could not predict the backlash. He could not predict the guilt, shame that would come about as a result of his betrayal. So what does he do Judas through the money into the temple and left no sympathy from those who were his cohorts here and he did what 25,000 Americans due every year he committed suicide. I wish all of you have been at the passion play is impossible to re-create the sense of presence of these events is was portrayed in over on my golf, but I'd like to do is to read for you a soliloquy that was a part of the over on the golf play.

The soliloquy of Judas just before he hangs himself.

I wish I could read it with the same sense of passion that the man who played the part was able to do, but nonetheless let me give it to you. Judas is speaking in agony tonight. Go to hide my shame to cast off the agony. No place is dark enough, no sea is deep enough to earth open up and devour me I can be no more betrayed him the best of men. I have delivered into the hands of his enemies to be tormented and executed. Where is there another man on whom such guilt rests. I am a contemptible trader. How kind he has been toward me how gently he comforted me when dark rejection oppressed my soul, how he warned me when I was already harboring that shameless betrayal and I this is how I have rewarded him accursed Satan. You've made me blind and deaf you tempted me to do this deed and dragged me into the not a disciple any longer hated everywhere despised everywhere be rated as a trader, even by those who seduced me exiled from human society, with its blazing fire within my gut. Everyone takes flight from Maine. Everyone curses me. Still, there is one, one whose face I wish I could see again, to whom I could claim, but this one lies in chains and perhaps is already being led to his death through my fault. Mindful woe to me.

There is no hope, no redemption, he is dead and I am his murderer accursed accursed is the hour in which my mother gave Mike to drag along this martyrs life any longer endure these torturers within me. Flee from others is one afflicted from the late know I can bear no more, not another step shall I take here I will bring to Anand and my accursed life. Here the most miserable of all fruits shall hang communist serpent communist serpent coiled herself around my throat and strangle this trader.

And with that he dies the end of his mother's dream. Judas prays this is my baby the end of his father's dream. Judas potential possibility it's gone if they could Judas even at that moment have received forgiveness. Yes, if he would have desired it. He would have received it. If you ask the other question was it possible for him to desire it, then we get into some deep theological water because the text tells us that these things had come to pass, but let me talk to those of you who may be are on the verge of becoming a trader to becoming a Judas you can.

If you desire come to the only one who can save you. Judas had remorse what is remorse remorse is looking at your sin apart from the forgiveness of Christ for remorse. There is no answer for the desire to be forgiven. There is there is a wonderful Savior to home claim one or three life-changing lessons that we dare not forget, as we look at the life of Judas. What are those lessons let me get them to you. First of all, no position, dare I say no gifts, no abilities are a substitute for a converted heart. No gifts, no position. No abilities are a substitute for a converted heart, my friend. Let's take another look at Judas Judas is not the kind of person who comes to church late sits in the back row and then leaves before the final him there. People like that. That's not Judas Judas Judas volunteers to sing in the choir.

Judas volunteers to be and I sure maybe especially not sure Judas is the kind of person who whom we elect to Deacon boards. We may do that perhaps elders shall I swallow hard and say it Judas might be a pastor. Judas is the kind of person who has ability and who has the best sense of ministry.

That's Judas. And so, let us keep in mind, my friend.

It does not matter. Your abilities, it does not matter the honor that has been given to you. It does not matter the image that you may have. The simple fact is, there is no substitute for a converted heart and God knows those who are his. And sometimes we don't know position. No gifts, no abilities substitute for conversion number two only grace only grace draws us to Christ and keeps us there.

People always say why did Jesus choose Judas or they may ask the question why did Judas betrayed Christ, I've a different question for you today. Why did the 11 disciples not betray him in this way. That's the real question the reason that God chose Judas.

Christ chose him so that he might be a representative humanity showing human nature without restraints, without the intervention of God's grace and without repentance that is human nature. Right there, Judas, and there's a little bit of Judas in all costs and if we love God and if we been converted by God and if we want to follow God and if we desire and we love him. It is God's matchless grace because all of us when were born the same sin nature. The only differences our environment. What were taught at the end of the day. The grace and the intervention of God as a final lesson in this, I think pretty well wraps it up, but the gate to handle is right next door to the gate to heaven.

The gate to hell is right next to the gate to heaven. Jesus is the gate to heaven for three years Judas was able to be with him to learn from him to become a part of them. All of that happened. And yet Judas never allowed Christ to change his heart and therefore he came to the gate of heaven, but walked past it and eventually he went to hell. I think it's true of most pastors certainly true of me. Somehow we are fascinated by cemeteries when my wife and I were in England just last week we were at a little Anglican church with a marvelous, marvelous cemetery. I like the idea of cemeteries around churches. I think be pretty difficult. You something about having to walk past the alumni Association before you get to the undergraduates. In fact the cemetery had a bench rate idea everybody should spend at least an hour meditating in a cemetery from time to time I like to look at epitaphs. I often wonder what would be on my epitaph, not the one that my family would choose because they might be much kinder to me, then God would be. I'm thinking what would God may be put on my epitaph how you look at the Scriptures and you think of Abraham, a friend of God and pageant mad on your tombstone you think of David. Despite all of his faults, a man after God's own heart, you think of the pole what what would we put on pulse tombstone. Possibly I have fought the good fight, we take it right out of his last words about Judas when we write on his tombstone, the words of Jesus in another context. Jesus said it would've been good for that man if he had never been born you listening to me today. Are you hearing what God is saying to us if you have never been born twice, you will eternally regret that you were born.

Once, it will have been good for you. He had never been born.

So I had my end today with a question. What if Jesus were to say to you and to me, you know among you. There are some here at the Moody church or listening, there are some among you who will be training what would you say would you say always wondered about so-and-so always had my doubts about their commitment take a page from the disciples and ask a question Lord is that I choir members is it you ushers is that you deacons past full staff members congregation visitors is if you is that I could. I preach the gospel.

Could I shepherd people try share the word. Could it be me, Lord. The question that we should burn into every single human heart, Lord, is it high so I need to get something today. I ask myself, but I have to ask you because I'm your past is that you are father we think of the mystery of a life lived in such a way that it would have been good if he had never been born.

We think of the mother of Judas, not knowing that throughout 2000 years of history. No one so far as we know, whatever. Call us on Judas.

We think father of this man so close to Jesus and yet eternally.

So far, and we ask that with the disciples sitting around that table in the presence of the all knowing Christ that you might grant us the ability to ask a simple question. Lord, is it my want you to ask that question right now in the presence of the Lord, would you, whoever you are, wherever your listening, you ask that question. Lord, is it I who has never been converted father, grant a spirit of revelation and conviction. In truth we ask in Jesus and blessed name.

Amen my friend. I don't know about you but I'm deeply sobered by the message that has just been presented. The fact that the human heart can be so deceptive, and to realize that there is some of you who are listening today who perhaps think that you are on your way to heaven. Usually it's because people think that their good work should get them there. But you are deceived. It is a time for each of us to ask the question Lord is it I mean well for those of you who know Jesus Christ as your Savior and you're wondering how you can better navigate the culture I've written a book entitled the church in Babylon. Now I need to emphasize that today is the last day that this resource is being made available to you. This book deals with all kinds of issues it deals with conflicts of conscience.

It deals with what do we do when everyone else around us bows to the culture and we don't the courage to confront a deadly enemy such as technology, transgender is some sexuality in the church Islam immigration and the church taking the cross into the world. False Gospels and then the last chapter is entitled the church but will survive in Babylon for gift of any amount. This book can be yours. Here is what you do go to RTW that's RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 now because this is the last day, we are making this resource available. I'm going to be giving you that contact info again but thank you so much in advance for helping us your gifts enable running to win, to be in 20 different countries in three different languages. Contact us go to RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 you can call right now 1-888-218-9337 thanks so much for your encouragement and your help. You can write to accept running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 running to win is all about helping you understand God's roadmap for your race of life. Anxiety can slow all of the stone in the race of life, but anxiety is something Jesus said we can leave by the side of the road. Are you fearful about the future if you're beset by anxiety within next time.

As we turn to John chapter 13 here will see how having heavenly heart conquers anxiety. Thanks for listening for Dr. Erwin looks her, this is Dave McAllister running to win is sponsored by the teacher

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