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Forgiven in Christ #2

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green
The Truth Network Radio
July 25, 2022 8:00 am

Forgiven in Christ #2

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green

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July 25, 2022 8:00 am

Today as Pastor Don Green continues teaching God's people, God's Word. He'll bring our series called -When You're Weary with Sin- to a close with a final look at the complete and total forgiveness Jesus offers to those who simply put their trust in His finished work of salvation on the cross of Calvary. And how we could never do anything to earn or deserve the mercy, He has shown us.--thetruthpulpit.comClick the icon below to listen.

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Don Green

This is a bold statement, but this is what Christ has purchased for us.

You have as much right in the presence of God as Jesus himself does, because you go in not on your own merit, but on the full righteousness and the shed blood of Christ. He will bring our series called, When You're Weary with Sin to a Close, with a final look at the complete and total forgiveness Jesus offers to those who simply place their trust in his finished work of salvation on the cross of Calvary, and how he could never do anything to earn or deserve the mercy he has shown us. Here is Don Green now with part two of a lesson called, Forgiven in Christ. Not only is Christ forgiven your failed boasts, he also forgives your failed love.

Your failed love. As Peter stood before that fire, he denied that he was Jesus' disciple. It was a low moment of sin, weakness, and fear. That in front of the enemies of God, rather than standing up and saying, yes, I am his disciple, and I am glad to let you know that, Peter, as it were, stepped on the other side of the fire and said, no guys, I'm with you. I don't know that man. I'm not one of his disciples.

Can you imagine? Do you see the treachery of that? Do you see the betrayal of that? The Lord God in human flesh, the sweet Savior who has loved Peter and forgiven him and revealed great things to him and done nothing but show him the greatness of divine love and majesty. And Peter was an eyewitness to these things because a couple of crooks around a fire questioned him closely. Peter set the love of Christ aside.

He said, I don't know the man. And Christ here in John 21 comes to Peter, look at verse 16, and he drops the comparison to the others and just asks Peter a one-on-one question here in verse 16. He said to him again a second time, Simon, son of John, do you love me? And Peter answered him, yes, Lord, you know that I love you. And Jesus said to him, shepherd my sheep. You see it again, Christian? Jesus accepted the confession and forgave Peter.

Let me ask you the question again from a little different angle. As you've been out in the world, maybe out in business, maybe at school, secular setting, things of Christ come up. And have you held your tongue, laughed at the blasphemies in order to join in and not stand apart for Christ?

Do you know something about what that is like? And as you're now here with the people of God, under the Word of God, you feel the weight of that? Christian, let me tell you that if you've distanced yourself from Christ to avoid conflict or ridicule from men, and you're now feeling the pain, you're now humbled before Christ, humbled before the cross, and you're just saying, oh God, forgive me for being like that, forgive me for my own betrayal and treachery toward Christ. You know what Scripture says to you?

Do you know what the Word of God says as you put your faith in Christ? Scripture says he forgives you. Scripture says their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more. Let's look at that verse over in Hebrews for just a minute, just so you see it in the text with your own eyes, not simply on my quoting. There is a wonderful, complete restoration to you in Christ that even your worst betrayals of Christ, he says, I'm not going to hold it against you. Look at Hebrews 10 verses 17 and 18.

I'll give you a moment, I hear those pages rustling. I hear those iPads clicking down to Hebrews 10. Hebrews 10, 17 and 18. Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more. Now where there is forgiveness of these things, there is no longer any offering for sin. Therefore, brethren, verse 19, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which he inaugurated for us through the veil, that is his flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. There it is in the language of God, there it is on the certified authority of the power of the blood of Christ, there it is on the promise of God saying, I remember this no more.

I hold it not against you. Come, as it were, into the presence of God with boldness and with a full assurance that he gladly receives you in love, not because of your deserving, not because you haven't failed in your boasts, but because the blood of Jesus his son cleanses us from all sin. And we are fully restored to a complete union with God, fully justified without any diminishment, beloved, because the blood of Christ, because the righteousness of Christ has been credited to your account in your salvation. This is a bold statement, but this is what Christ has purchased for us. You have as much right in the presence of God as Jesus himself does because you go in not on your own merit, but on the full righteousness and the shed blood of Christ.

You are fully justified. You are fully reconciled. There is no space between you and God, even in your failed boasts, even in your failed love. You see, beloved, look at the way that Jesus dealt with Peter. Look at the awfulness of his denials in his human flesh and see Jesus forgiving him, restoring him, and sending him into ministry and recognize that that is the way that he deals with you also. There is no unique privilege that Peter had in salvation that is not given to you. Just as Jesus forgave all of Peter's sins, received him and sent him and commissioned him to serve, so in the same way, beloved, as a Christian, Jesus receives you fully, holds nothing against you, your sins and your lawless deeds, he remembers no more, even the treachery that you've shown against his name since your salvation. Jesus says, Peter, go tend my lambs.

Scripture tells you, as a Christian here today, your sins and your lawless deeds, he remembers no more. Isn't that wonderful? Isn't this like the best news that there could possibly be? Isn't that the answer?

Isn't that the balm? As a passage we read in Hebrews said, sprinkled clean from an evil conscience, having your accusing conscience silenced by the blood of Christ, having the righteousness of Christ answer every failed dimension of your life, giving you everything that is necessary to be fully reconciled to God, isn't this the most wonderful thing in the world? What I want you to see is that there's no qualification to it. God hasn't given you a conditional love in Christ. He has given you a full and complete pardon of all of your sins so that you can approach him with full assurance that he receives you and holds nothing against you any longer. Beloved, this is why we celebrate communion. This is why we remember. It should echo in your mind, oh, but I don't deserve that.

That's precisely the point. That's why we look with all humility to the cross and with all gratitude to the cross and we recognize that all of our hope is in Christ alone. And that in Christ there are no qualifications. In Christ there are no echoes unanswered in the back of your conscience, but do you know what I said on that one occasion? Do you realize how blasphemous it was? Yeah, Christ knows, and he paid the price.

And it's settled, and it's put away, never to be raised against you again. There's a final thing that I would show you from Peter's restoration here. Point number three, that Christ forgives even your misplaced trust. Christ forgives your misplaced trust.

And these are all kind of just different variations of saying pretty much the same thing in some ways. You know that as you go through the Gospels, throughout the Gospels, Peter is brash and he is assertive and he's boastful. As we saw earlier, Lord, they may all deny you, they may fall away, but I won't. Peter boasting always in himself, it seems, so often in the Gospels, proclaiming his own insight, proclaiming his own commitments. It was obvious that he was a man who trusted in himself as you go through the Gospels. But now, Peter is perhaps like some of you, face to face with his own failure, in undeniable ways, recognizing that he was not the man that he had boasted to be. The third question brought that out. The third question nailed down the obvious parallels to his prior three denials. Jesus asked Peter about his love a third and final time in John 21 verse 17.

Look at it there with me. He said to him the third time, Simon son of John, do you love me? Now he uses a different word for love here, but as I said earlier, these words are used interchangeably throughout the Gospel of John. The point of this passage is not, contrary to some, to distinguish different kinds of love and to show Peter that he didn't even have the lesser love.

That's not the point here, because these words are used interchangeably. And notice that the text says that Jesus asked him the third time. He wasn't asking him a new question that was different from the prior two. This was the same question he's been asking all along. It's the third time he asks him this question, Simon son of John, do you love me?

The point is not about a different lesser love. The point here is that Peter, you denied me three times, and I need to ask you a third time to complete the reversal of those prior denials that you've made against me. This third question grieves Peter. Look at it there in verse 17.

Simon son of John, do you love me? Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time. See it again? Twice in this verse it says the third time. It's not a new question.

This is the same question being asked for a third time. And Peter's grieved because he said to him the third time, do you love me? Why is this such a grief?

It's a grief because the parallel is so obvious. Oh Lord, it was just a few days ago where I said no, I don't know you. No, I don't belong to that man.

No, I'm not associated with his name. And the pain of having that brought out into full light and full accountability is brought to him, and the memory pierced him. And he's broken, as it were, before the question. Why? Because it couldn't be denied.

Because there was no cover-up possible. Here it is fully exposed, third time. And look at what Peter does. Look at how he answers in his grief. And see, beloved, where his trust is. This is the real point of verse 17. He said to him, Lord, you know all things.

You know that I love you. What's he doing here? He's appealing to divine omniscience. He's no longer boasting in himself, oh Lord, I love you. He's shifted his trust away from his own ability, from his own commitments. He has abandoned that, and he says, Lord, you know all things.

You know that I love you. My trust is in what you know to be true, not what my life would seem to show about it. He is trusting in the Lord, not in himself, as he makes this confession.

There is no confidence in self, as he makes this statement. What's your life been like this past week, Christian? For some of you, I'm sure you look back and say, if somebody just had that window of my life to go on, they would wonder if I knew Christ at all. I had no time for Christ. I wasn't interested in the things of Christ. I pursued the things of the world. My mouth was not what it should have been.

My relationships were broken. There's nothing here in the current state of my life to point to and say, this shows that I'm a Christian. You're filled with the pockmarks of your failed promises, and it all weighs on your conscience right now. You're humbled by your ongoing struggles with sin.

The point here, I'll say it once again, is not to whip you over those things. The point today is to remind you of the whole point of the cross, the whole point of what Christ has done for you. Scripture says he forgives you. Scripture says that your sins and lawless deeds he will remember no more. Look at the end of verse 17. Jesus says in just the firm commitment of love toward Peter, Jesus said to him, tend my sheep. He accepts the confession. He doesn't contradict Peter. He says, yeah, Peter, I know all things, and what you're saying isn't true. He receives that confession of love, of faith and trust, and sends Peter into ministry. If you love me, tend my lambs, shepherd my sheep, tend my sheep.

It's a full forgiveness. And Peter, not trusting in himself, reposes his confidence entirely in Christ and says, Lord, you know what is true. Lord, you know the truth about me.

You see all of my failures. I ask you, look through all of that and see what's in my heart that, Lord, I truly do love you despite my prior denials. And the fact that Christ sends him into ministry shows I don't hold it against you, Peter. Christian, the whole point that I would have you see here as we look at this in anticipation of communion is that in the midst of your failures of this past week, your sins, your rebellion, all the conflict that you now feel the weight of and now you turn away from, what I want you to see as you come to the table is is that there's not a barrier between you and the Lord.

The whole point of his body and blood was that there would be a full reconciliation between you and your God, that you could come with a sense of assurance that Christ receives you and receives you well. Not holding back, I know the feelings that you sometimes have as you're confessing sin and you wonder if there's going to be consequences if it's somehow going to be held against you. What we see in the Gospels, what we see in the way that Christ dealt with Peter, what we see in the promises of God is this, their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more. And so as we come to Christ, we come not in confidence in ourself, we come not boasting of our successful love, we come not boasting of anything about ourselves, we deny self-righteousness. At the same time, we're not restrained by the presence of our sins that we've committed because we realize the whole point of the Gospel, the whole point of the cross was that those things would be put away, that Christ in love has done this for you so that you would be received into the full fellowship of God without condition, without blame.

Without hesitation. And so Christ sends Peter out to feed the people of God God's word, to lead them and protect them. What was the consequence of that? How can we know that the forgiveness that Christ promised to Peter was real? That the reconciliation was full, that there was nothing left to the denials, that they had been put away and that Peter had been fully received and sent into service.

What's the proof of that? What's the evidence of that that we could see from God's word? We read the book of Acts. We read 1 and 2 Peter. We see in Acts chapter 2 that Peter preached a sermon and 3,000 souls were saved in response. We see in Acts chapter 3 that he healed the lame. We see that he brought the Gospel to Gentiles in Acts chapter 10. We see him raising the dead in Acts chapter 9. We see the full power of God being poured out on his life.

Why? Because Peter was fully reconciled to him, and God had sent him out, set aside, paid for, canceled the debt of the sins and denials, fully owned Peter as his own, and sent him out as an apostolic representative with a ministry unlike any other. That's how great the forgiveness was.

That's how full and complete and free it was. The fruit of Peter's subsequent life showed the fullness of the reconciliation that God had given to him, and watch this, also showed the sincerity of his commitment in these three confessions of his love for Christ in response. How could the Lord do that? How could the Lord use a failure like Peter and such a blatant betrayal three times in the hour of Christ's greatest need in human flesh?

How could he do that? Beloved, don't you see? Don't you see the whole point? The whole point is that the gospel that we preach, the Christ in whom we trust, this is all about grace, not your merit. Christianity is about grace. It is about God showing undeserved favor to sinners. It is about Christ receiving sinful men and women like you and forgiving them when they come in repentant faith. You see, the whole idea, contrary to every other religion in the world, the whole idea is that as you come to Christ, you would come knowing that you have eternal life, 1 John 5.13, that you would come with a sense of certainty that all of your sins have been covered and that a friend like Christ, a brother like Christ, has provided for you completely and that there is nothing separating you from God any longer, that a holy God has received you, that a loving God will keep you, that you are fully reconciled, no further weight to be had on your conscience, no more fear, no more dread, no more guilt, paid for, covered, satisfied in Christ.

That's what we remember as we celebrate Communion today. That's Don Green bringing our series called When You're Weary with Sin to a Close here on The Truth Pulpit. If you'd like to share this message or the entire series with a friend or loved one, please visit There you can also support this ministry financially.

Again, it's Now, before we go, Don, when Jesus died for our sins on the cross of Calvary, what he accomplished was nothing less than an irrevocable reconciliation between God and sinful man. Isn't that right? Well, Bill, as we close this series titled When You're Weary with Sin, the passage from 2 Corinthians 5 comes to my mind. God made Christ, who knew no sin, to be sin on our behalf so that we might become the righteousness of God in him. Christ has finished the work of redemption, and now, my friend, he calls on you to repent and believe in Christ for your salvation, and let me urge you to do so. You need to be saved from this perverse generation, flee this wicked world, and go to the Lord Jesus Christ. Thank you, Don. And friends, I'm Bill Wright, inviting you to join us again next time when Don Green continues to teach God's people God's Word on the Truth Pulpit.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-19 23:47:11 / 2023-03-19 23:55:34 / 8

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