Welcome to Live with Lon. I'm so glad you're with us today. Today we continue and complete our series, The Benevolence of God, to us as believers. Remember it's a two-part series growing out of John chapter 10.
It's not a topical series. It's an exegetical verse-by-verse series where two sections of the passage connected into this nice little two-part message that I hope will bring tremendous encouragement and fortitude to your heart. So, are you ready? Let's begin. Lord Jesus, thank you so much for your wonderful Word. Use it today to encourage and strengthen our hearts to remind us how incredibly good and benevolent you have been to us as your children in Christ. May you lift our hearts today as a result of your Word. Open our hearts so that we can understand your Word and absorb it. Do this by the power of the Holy Spirit.
If we prayed this in Jesus' name and everybody said, what? Amen and Amen. What do we study at Live with Lon? We study the Bible.
Come on, say it with me. The whole Bible. Nothing but the Bible. And then we apply it to our life by asking our questions.
So, what? We're in the King James Version of the Bible. We're in John chapter 10, the Good Shepherd chapter. And just before we dig in, I want to read you a little bit part of an email that I got a week or so ago.
And the reason I do this, I'm not bragging or anything. The reason I do this is because many of you pray for our ministry. Many, some of you support our ministry financially. And I want you to know God is using your prayers and your gifts and making an impact on lives around the United States and the world. Whether it's in prison or whether it's using not a sermon. And listen to this, okay?
I live in Chicago and I currently live in Seoul, Korea. But I can instantly recognize your voice, so if I ever do see you in person, I'll give you a great big hug. Your testimony was given to me by my sister who lives in Arlington on a CD. Unbeknownst to her, this CD was one of the main reasons I came back to Christ. Over the past 20 years, I have listened to your sermons and now I listen to Live with Lon from So What to How Sweet It Is. Your teaching is something I look forward to on a weekly basis.
Thank you for being a Bible teacher and thank you for teaching me how to love Christ more. May the Lord continually bless and guide you, your brother in Christ, and he signs it in his English name and his Korean name. You know what? I don't know how he gets it in Korea. I guess he gets it. I guess he logs onto our site or I guess he listens on YouTube or I don't know how he gets it, but he gets it. So praise the Lord, man.
How about this? We have a friend in, and if you're listening today, Brother Tay, God bless us. God bless you.
And we have friends in Korea listening. This is great. Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord. And thank you for your prayers and your support that helps us to make this kind of impact on lives. Okay. Well, we are going to pick up and finish this little two-part series, like I said, so let's do that. The Benevolence of God to Us as Believers Part 2, the Gift of Eternal Life.
You say, why do you say that? Here we go. Last week, we read John chapter 10 verses 20 through 25. Now let's begin at verse 26. But you do not believe, Jesus says, because you are not of my sheep, as I said to you. My sheep hear my voice and I know them and they follow me. And I give them eternal life and they shall never perish, nor shall anyone snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who gave them to me, is greater than all.
And no one is able to snatch them out of my Father's hand. I and the Father are one. We've talked about these verses a few weeks ago, in terms of eternal security, that Jesus said they will never perish, His sheep. And if you're one of them, that's His promise, you shall never perish. No way to lose your salvation or forfeit it because of your own behavior can't be done. But I want to focus today on something else He says right here in these same verses.
Look what He says. Jesus said, verse 27, let's put it on the screen. My sheep hear my voice and I know them and they follow me, verse 28, and I what?
What's the next word? I give them eternal life. I give them eternal life.
Look at this, would you please? He doesn't say, and I reward them for their faithful service with eternal life. That is what He said. And I compensate them for their godly behavior with eternal life. That isn't what He said here.
He said, I give them eternal life. And when you give something as a gift, it's not because someone earned it. It's not because someone did some service to you and now you're giving them a gift in response.
No, no. Someone does something for you. They work. They serve.
Those are wages. You know, TaskRabbit. Brenda has talked me into using TaskRabbit now. And we have a couple of young guys here in our neighborhood that I constantly call to be my TaskRabbit guys. And they've helped me with all kinds of things, moving gravel around, moving stuff around, putting it in the shed, from the garage here, there, whatever, moving furniture. They've helped me with everything.
Wonderful, wonderful young men. When I pay them, that's not a gift. I don't expect them to get down and hug my feet and say, oh, thank you, thank you, thank you so much for this wonderful gift. No, they say thank you. And that's nice of them. But this is not a gift.
This is wages. In fact, the scripture even refers to this. Look at Romans Chapter four. Romans Chapter four says, verse two, therefore, if Abraham was justified by works, by his own effort, if that's how we got his salvation, he has something of which to boast. But what does the scripture say? Verse three, Abraham believed God and it was counted to him for righteousness.
He didn't work. Now watch verse four. Now to him who works, their wages are not counted as grace, but as a debt. But to him who does not work, but believes on him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. What's Paul say?
He says, when you work, your payment is part of a debt that the boss has to pay you. That's not a gift. So the Bible says, though, that Jesus gives us eternal life as a gift. Now, let me show you where else in the scripture it says this very same thing. Let me show you some scriptures.
How about one of my very favorite. Romans Chapter six, verse twenty three. Everybody should know this verse. Romans six twenty three.
Look at it. For the wages of sin is death, but the what? The gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord.
The gift of God. The wages of sin is death. You and I earn death. There is death is wages for our sin nature and the way we lived in that sin nature apart from Christ. But eternal life is a gift. How about Romans Chapter five right here?
Over and over and over again in Romans Chapter five, beginning in verse fifteen through verse eighteen. Paul constantly refers to the free gift, the free gift, the gift, the free gift, meaning our salvation, our eternal life. It's a gift, as Paul says over and over and over again. How about Ephesians Chapter two, verse eight and nine? Many of us should know memorize these verses for by grace you have been saved through faith and it is not of yourselves. It is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. Our salvation is what?
A gift from God. And finally, First John Chapter five. Great verses for assurance of salvation. Verse eleven. And this is the testimony that God has.
What's the next word? Given us eternal life. And this life is in his son. These things, verse thirteen, I've written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know you have eternal life. But notice what verse eleven says, that eternal life is a gift. The scripture over and over and over again makes it perfectly clear.
Eternal life is not a wage. It's a gift that God gives those of us who are willing to put our faith and our trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. Now, I often tell people when they are about to come to Christ that the Bible calls this receiving Christ. But as to as many as received him. John Chapter one.
He gave them the authority to become children of God. John one twelve. Friends, I tell them this little anecdote that if the UPS person or the FedEx person or the DHL person or the prime person or the USPS person.
Hope I'm not leaving anybody out here. Comes to the front door with a gift for us. Does that gift belong to us? Yes. Is that gift ours to have and possess?
Yes. But what do we have to do from the UPS person, the FedEx person, the prime person? What do we have to do? Well, we have to reach out and take possession of it. We have to receive it. It was sent to us. But as the recipient, we have to proactively reach out, take it, appropriate it and make it our own.
You understand what I'm saying? If we don't do that, the UPS person may stand there for 100 years. But that gift's not ours yet till we reach out and we receive it and we appropriate it. We take it and make it our own.
And this is what I tell people you're doing. Jesus bought your salvation on the cross. Jesus offers you the gift of eternal life and heaven and salvation. But it's not yours or mine.
It's a legitimate offer. He bought it. He paid for it like the person who sent you the gift did. But it's not yours or mine till we reach out and appropriate it and make it ours. I hope you've done that. It's not enough just to stand there, look at the UPS person and intellectually know that the gift they're offering to give to you belongs to you if you if you want it. That doesn't make it yours. It's not yours till you proactively reach out and voluntarily take it and appropriate it and make it yours.
I hope you've done that. Jesus offers you all these things, but you and I have to reach out and take it by giving our life to Christ and trusting Christ and believing in Him. OK, now, eternal life is something God gives to his children in his benevolence. Now, we know this, right? So let's ask the question, so what? And talk about what this means for us. Ready? Are you ready? Come on now. One, two, three. So what?
Yes. And my goodness, I have to say, talking about this great topic, you know, what would our friend Jackie say? He'd say, how sweet it is. Or as we say, how sweet it is. What a sweet thing to know God has given us eternal life. And that's the beauty, because if God gives it, we can't give it back.
It's it's not a wage. It's a gift. And God doesn't take gifts back. What a wonderful thing to know. And how sweet is it of the Lord Jesus?
How sweet it is. How sweet is it of the Lord Jesus to have purchased our salvation and give it to us free? Because we could never earn the wages to purchase it. We could never earn the wages to deserve it. The wages of sin is death. We earn that. But we can't earn eternal life.
So it has to be a gift. Not a wonderful thing. God not only loved you enough that he removed your blindness and my blindness, which we talked about last week, but as a result of removing our blindness so the light of the gospel could shine in, he offers to give us eternal life free as a gift.
What a great thing. Remove our blindness. Give us heaven as a gift. And he did both of these.
Why? Because he's a beneficent God. He's a wonderful God. He's a good God. He's a loving God. He's a merciful God. He's a benevolent God to us. No good thing does God withhold from those who walk uprightly with him, who are his children in Christ. Now, what's the point?
What's the take home? What's a not a sermon, just a thought? You're like, Lon, I already know this. You're not telling me anything I don't know.
OK. OK, calm down. I never said today I was going to tell you anything you didn't already know as a believer. But I think way too often we may know this, but we forget it in our everyday walk. We may know this, but we we let ourselves get dragged down by the problems of life, which we've all got. And we lose the joy and the excitement and the enthusiasm of remembering what God did for us. Remove our blindness.
Give us eternal life, man. How can we not be excited about that every single day? How can we not remind ourselves of that? As Peter said, to stir up our pure minds with remembrance of these things. We ought to go out of our house every day, folks, have reminding, having reminded ourselves of this and having thank God of this. And with a song in our heart and a smile on our face and a positive mental attitude because of the love of Christ and the benevolence of Christ for us.
This should influence the way we live and keep the grumpies away from us. And even if things aren't all perfect, still put a song in our heart. You know, I want to show you one of the greatest gifts I ever got.
We're talking about gifts here, right? Let me stand up for a second so I can hold this up. This is a a quilt that my wife did for me. And I want to show it to you because on it and many of you know, I love In-N-Out Burger T-shirts. Many of you know that I wear them on my trips, the Israel trips and other trips like to Egypt. Many of you may know that Brenda hates it when I do that because she said you look like a schlepper to wear a golf shirt.
OK, fine. But I have a lot of In-N-Out Burger shirts. And look what my wife did. She took the backs because all the In-N-Out Burger shirts, the backs are different.
The front is looks pretty much the same, but the backs are different. And what she did. Look at this. She took all the backs and she made it into this quilt for me. Look at the other side. This this wonderfully warm quilt. See the blue on this side?
OK. And she took all of these great In-N-Out Burger shirts and put them together on this wonderful quilt. Look at this. This is amazing. Look at this. This one was a really old one that I had here that I really loved, but outgrew.
And she put it here in the quilt. Look at this. This is so sweet. How sweet it is.
Look at this. The old Corvette. Now, this is one of the best gifts I've ever been given in my whole life. Not only is it functional, but it's sweet. It is so, so precious that she did that for me. You know what that gift tells me? That gift tells me my wife loves me. This was a labor of love. This quilt. It was not something I deserved or that I worked for.
It was not a wage. It was just something sweet she did to communicate. Hey, Lon, you know what? I love you, man. I love you. And friends, the gift of eternal life that the Lord gives us.
Something he did because he wants to communicate that same message. Hey, George. Hey, Susie.
Hey, Lon. I just want you to know I love you. I love you so much that I want to spend eternity with you in heaven. Almighty God wants to spend eternity with me?
I think I got the better end of that deal. Not him. But doesn't matter. That's how much he loves us. Friends, let that encourage your heart each and every day. Let's pray together. Dear Lord Jesus. Thank you so much for your benevolence, your goodness, not just removing our blindness, but then positively. On the positive side, giving us eternal life.
Free and postage paid. And Lord Jesus, you did it just because you want us to know, hey, I love you. I love you, man. I love you deeply. Lon, I want you to know that.
Deeply enough to give my life to purchase your eternal life. So, George, remember that? Susie, remember that?
Lon, remember that? And may it bring a smile to our face and may it bring joy to our heart each and every day. May it be a quilt that we treasure each and every day. And we pray this in Jesus name.
And everybody said what? Amen and amen. Hey, Lord willing, be back from Egypt and be back doing live with Lon this coming week. And we'll hopefully see you next week. Lord willing on live with Lon. Thank you.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-03 11:00:06 / 2023-03-03 11:07:42 / 8