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The Way We Were (Part 2 of 2)

Truth for Life / Alistair Begg
The Truth Network Radio
September 22, 2022 4:00 am

The Way We Were (Part 2 of 2)

Truth for Life / Alistair Begg

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September 22, 2022 4:00 am

The grace of God shouldn’t only be a doctrine we cling to, but displayed in how we relate to governments, family and one another. Alistair Begg examines the actions of a grace-filled Christian as defined in the letter to Titus. Be listening on Truth For Life with Alistair Begg.


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Some people think of the try really hard to be kind, oral law-abiding citizens. They can somehow earn their way to heaven will hear from Alistair Begg today. While they may be highly respected and well-liked are actually in serious spiritual danger.

They untruthful life will learn how it's possible to be lost in all of our niceness. Alister's teaching in Ephesians chapter 2 were in verses one through three verses are fairly tightly packed try to summarize them is my first attempt at it. We may have to go back and do them again.

Having a parent myself in the first hour. But anyway, Alister's give you five words that begin with a D. The first one is obvious. We've already mentioned that dad and you where our past tense day.

If this does not describe your safety, again just so where understand one another. There is no past tense. If it is present tense, then your logical enough to recognize that the Bible diagnosis as your dad met your dad will you either. Where are you are guided dad your life is a matter woman comes to believe in Jesus accepts all that God has done in Jesus.

Then they remain in the condition in which they are created, namely dead men walking all of course we were at the same time physically alive were able to get up and go out in the morning engage in sport and commerce and academics in politics we enjoy friendship. We enjoy family and so on.

But the Bible says that as we went through all of that. We did so as dead men we were able to argue about religion, but we had no relationship with Jesus. We were blind to the beauty of Jesus people would talk about what a wonderful Savior.

Jesus is reset. I don't I don't get that it's all we were deaf to his voice when the Bible was taught to just rely one ear and out the other. Or maybe not even in an era tall attendance at church was at best a kind of religious ceremony get over as fast as you can.

Hopefully it won't take too long on it was a chore something to endure.

The songs were an embarrassment. How strange these people singing the song try to get himself so worked up. What is that fella doing raising his hands in the air. I can't believe these people what a strange group.

We are, let's get out of here as quickly as we can and hopefully we won't have to come back very often that's the way we were come on now Alister you going to go to Sunday school. I don't want to go to Sunday school and you've got the Bible class. I'm not going to the Bible class but you love the Bible class not done. I hated don't say that. Okay, I won't, but I do. What's up with the kid. He's dead, she's dead, she's unresponsive. She doesn't hear God.

You can't make her and neither can I only God can only God raises the dead easy bad cell evangelism. It's impossible.

When I go to the graveyard for my lunch, every so often here in chagrin, I might as well stand there and call people out of their tunes. I see the names come on out. Nothing happens I eat my lunch. I go away again the same here. I say believe I say you look at me like a cow looking over a wall. What's he on about what that's what's he getting upset about. I just don't understand it. That's the way we were dead easy. The diagnosis of humanity is either that were sick and we just really need a doctor or that were well and we just need a few more vitamins we can fix this we can work it out.

Figure what I'm saying to have to keep on speaking until I can go on, you know, we can work it out and then you say to yourself I can work it out. Why can you work it out. Secondly, drifting, drifting.

We walked on the path that was the course of this world first to you once walked down this path. Remember, the Bible says that there is a broad road. Alisa destruction, and there is another way that leads to life and what Paul is saying here is before we come to trust in Christ, we just go down the same path as everybody else. We convince ourselves that their safety in numbers. Everybody believes this or everybody disbelieves this, everybody does this. Everybody wants this on is doing what everybody dies before we came to Christ, I use the word drifted because it starts with D and hopes up because JB Phillips uses in his paraphrase, you drifted along on the stream of this world's ideas of living that helps me so I wanted my light before I trust in Christ, drifter, drifter, any dead fish can go with the current of the river takes a life fish to swim against the current and before I was made a life I inevitably run with the current I'm been as extensively bad as engaged as everybody else but a condition of my life before God. My soul before God was that the deadness of my life meant that I was a drifter. That's for the Bible says we were swimming with the stream that was secular was what is described here is is society organized without reference towards God society organized without reference towards God doing its best, trying his hardest turning over a new leafs, hoping to fix itself.

Easing his disappointments, licking its wounds and so on again in our heart of hearts we save yourself. I don't know if I can. I don't if I'm going to build to make this I don't seem to be able to to affect anything at why the Bible tells us here that we were following the prince of the power of the air, the devil ever read Screwtape letters I commanded to CS Lewis Screwtape in his nephew wormwood.

By the time Paul is closing out the letter in chapter 6. He's telling the believers that were not wrestling against flesh and blood, but against spiritual wickedness in the heavenly places. Was he talking about.

He's talking about the activity of evil in our world that is a spiritual world that we cannot see that is representative of all kinds of manifestations of darkness of the debt deadness think about so many of the contemporary movies the preoccupation with darkness and with and with devils and chaos. Why is this and why does nobody really care because he's the prince of the parlay he's in charge of that stuff, under God, but nevertheless thirdly disobedient, disobedient, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience. Why do I do what I do. Why do I go where I go.

Why am I position my why was I that way because I was I was part of a band a bad band. I mean that I am in a group abandoned. I listened to think from VBC yesterday on UNSCOP music. I think it's called scar and it is pretty good but they had bands from Japan bands from Australia bends from everywhere lasted about an hour and I thought you know everybody's in a band, one way or another by nature I'm in a bad band. The band is called the sons of disobedience. We see her teenage kids that their members of the band, apart from Jesus that that the they are playing in a band called the sons of disobedience.

I swear the only way they are is for you. That's where you can fix. You can you can pray for them. You can influence them. You can encourage them but you can make them a life.

Dylan was right. You have to serve somebody. It may be the devil or it may be the Lord. We will serve somebody disobedient.

Fourthly, debased.

This gets more uncomfortable by the by the deed is not your like, could you encourage is just a little more before we finish your sale yourself in the back of my valise the sunny outside know I get that I get entirely. I have been living under the burden of this for a loss two weeks.

This is either true or this is the biggest load of rubbish he ever came across your entire life. And if it's true then it affects everything. Not least of all our evangelism were not going to people to say would you like to meet Jesus heal add to the sum of your total happiness were not going to be two people and say how you know. Would you like to get a little direction in your life really matter charge and you do or you don't. You know that's not overdoing we're going to feel safe.

You know what we were good news for you the voice of Jesus will call you out of your deadness so I'm not that will force you have to show you that you are and then he will call you debased is an accurate description of we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of our body and our mind. Just that's the that's the way this now flash is that word flesh meaningless. Think of it in terms of the human condition weakened and distorted by sin.

The human condition weakened and distorted by sin. I notice that it is both physical and it is intellectual carrying out the desires of the body and the mind. Remember it's in their Screwtape that he's encouraging warm words to encourage the enemies that is the servants of God to take both the good things that God is given either at the wrong time in the wrong place or in the wrong quantities and and are our internal mechanism is drawn to that.

That's why you have to argue for heterosexual monogamy in a world that is so messed up sexually. That is why you have to argue to convince a young person that the only safe and enjoyable place for sex is within marriage and that I would say that marriage is fearful, it is destructive. You have to argue for that. You don't have to argue for the rest why because, by nature, we all once lived in the passions all the flash carrying out the desires of our bodies. Instinctually, both in terms of physicality and intellectually social.

He says well you know I'm not an immoral person. Okay love that's we can have that conversation but maybe you are an arrogant person. Maybe you are an arrogant unbeliever. Maybe you saved yourself when you get in the car never to send to that kind of level of thinking, except that strange concoction of biblical or anti-biblical or un-biblical wisdom. Why is that because of the diagnosis. You're only doing what comes naturally. Both mind and body manifesting itself in outrageous acts manifesting itself in respectable forms again. CS Lewis remember he talks about the businessman who is very well respected in the community has a lovely corner office as his initials are stamped into his his cough is Monogram is on his cough CS Lewis says in in in a well lit office. There he sits on nice man lost in his niceness. Boston is not easy because it is only the grace of God that calms and speaks to somebody who says you know actually I'm buying this diagnosis. I am a horrible dad mess and I am so horrible, so dead, so messed up that there's no way I'm getting fixed and the gospel says all yes there is. Let me tell you about Jesus. The other person says I'm actually not really quite messy at all. I'm a very fine follow and I really don't see any need whatsoever in the gospel comes and says you're a dead man, sir, and find a very a reaction of your mind is indicative of it debased dead drifting, disobedient, debased, and finally destined destined for what destined to experience the wrath of God.

We were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind present me what he saying is that we are both enslaved and we are the same time condemn condemn to suffer just judgment of God upon sin.

You see the Roth of God is the reaction of God to evil. It is the reaction of absolute holiness to that which is opposed to holiness the wrath of God is not arbitrary is not like a fiery outburst of some old grandpa who lost his temper when he was driving in Solon or whatever it is that the wrath of God isn't arbitrary. It is predictable the wrath of God is not an impersonal force is distinctly personal, it is the Roth of God. It is his settled reaction to evil in the world that don't stumble over this don't want on the road. This is why I believe in the love of God, but I don't believe in the Roth of God. Think about it. His love is the occasion of his Roth. It is because he loves that he is opposed to all that is evil in the same way that your cancer doctor loves you and is so post to the Schumer that is in you that he will do everything in his capacity to remove it for your well-being.

The worst thing you could do or say who cares Schumer here at Schumer. There indifference and expression of love indifference on the part of God to our evil who would believe in a God that was indifferent in this is very justice that is the indication of the extent of his life. You know this make you angry when someone you love harms themselves don't you get angry for what they're doing for their foolishness. All that just fries me when you see injustice.

You just go okay injustice. Big deal. It's a big world.

I hope you don't. I hope you react in anger. That shouldn't happen like that. That shouldn't happen to that lady that should not of taken place and that which we understand that I see you again in light of that, do you really believe in and trust a God who is indifference to our sin, who doesn't care enough about us to be angry about our rebel.

I couldn't. I couldn't. It doesn't work. There is no explanation for the cross of Jesus Christ.

Apart from the wrath of God why God why are crops well because God left yet you still haven't explained why a products safety many things before me and if I tell my wife is so for myself and in Lake Erie because I love you so much. She said you lost your mind but if she fell out of a boat and I went in after her in order to save her there would be some significance and that the love of God is expressed in the Roth and the wonder of the gospel is this, that he has brought forward into tying the punishment that we deserve and placed it on his son in order that we might then enjoy the benefits that accrue to us by one defense my righteousness. We sang it this morning. Lord, I need you. I always need you every hour I need you because my standing before you is not on the basis of well I'm doing or how I patch things up, but I am dependent entirely upon the fact that rearing shamans scoffing rude in my place condemned he student sealed my pardon with his blood bearing rough if my child says Finley does willful wrong if I saw my active greed or passion.

He imperils his moral future and destroys the peace and the well-being of the house.

Shall I not be grieved with him with an anger proportioned to the love I bear see the father who says you can just go and do what you want. What do I care who won such a five and in God we do not have that kind of father. The difficulty that many of us will face with this is because we have such a superficial view of what has happened to us when we came to trust in Christ until we get some kind of modicum of understanding of the fact that the way we wear was dead drifting disobedient, debased and destined for the wrath of God. Until that begins to dawn upon our hearts. Then we will neither praise him as we should, nor will we explained to our friends and neighbors why it is so important for them to know the love of God into because in the back of our minds will be saying of them were tempted to say about ourselves. Well you know what, I'm not a bad guy after all. My boss is not such a bad guy either.

He said nice guy's very good with his wife see him with his children. He goes on vacation all of that is true, the divine diagnosis. Your boss is a dead man walking. The only way to do evangelism. Ultimately, is to do it under the shadow of the Roth of God, thereby reminding us of the wonder of the love. The Bible describes as drifting disobedient based ultimately destined to face God's wrath. That's the way we were or the way we are before salvation listening to Alistair Begg on Truth for Life.

Alister returns shortly to close today's program as we just heard from Alastair are standing before God isn't based on our performance. It's based on the finished work of Jesus on our behalf. If you'd like to know more about God's plan of salvation take a few minutes to watch a couple of brief helpful videos find them online at the learn more page Truth for more. The more we understand about God's holiness is grace, his love for his people, the easier it becomes to trust him and at the same time to grasp the seriousness of his wrath. And yet so many people continue to strive in their own effort. That's why it's our passionate Truth for Life to teach the Bible every single day.

We trust God to work through the teaching of his word on this program to help unbelievers come to a saving knowledge of Christ to further establish believers in their faith and to build up and strengthen local churches, along with Alister's messages we choose books each month to recommend to you books that we choose with our mission in mind you may have heard me mention the book 7 reasons to reconsider Christianity. This is a book that gives straightforward answers to skeptical questions about Christianity. For example, there are people who dismiss Scripture as being an unintelligent source.

There are others who question Jesus death and resurrection.

In the book the author gives compelling and informative reasons for why the Bible is an intelligent and trustworthy source and why Jesus is worth following. This is a great gift to give to someone who isn't sure about Jesus or to give to someone having doubts about things they may have previously believed requester copy of seven reasons to reconsider Christianity. When you give a or call us at 888-588-7884. Now here's Alister with a prayer all help us. We pray to the students of your were to bow down under its dictates to trust his promises to heed his warnings to tell a story. Lord, thank you that we can actually say this is the way we wear were not all that we need to be, but would definitely know what we once were. When we were lost he came and rescued us reached into the pit and lifted herself otherwise why would you even be here. Why would you even care. Why would we even sing the song. It's our very very breath that we believe is an indication of your grace and your mercy.

We thank you in Christ name Bob P. Today's message confronted us with a divine diagnosis outside of Jesus.

All of us are in our sin. How do we fix this tomorrow will hear the divine remedy to this great diagnosis.

The Bible teaching of Alister Bragg is furnished by Truth for Life Learning is for Living

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