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March 12, 2021 12:00 am
How blessed is the man say our sin is covered by God knows what you will do tomorrow and the next day. In fact, for the rest of your life and that's part of the amazing grace of God that God knew you would send you had a son pay for it and then he watches you commit that sin and knowing full well the sun went through far and he sees you 2000 years later he still God. But no matter how many times you fail, he never fails you, no matter how many times you prove that you deserve hell he offers you heaven.
What happens to our sin. The answer from God's word is that our sin is forgiven.
These are just a few of the profound truths that Paul reveals to us in Romans chapter 4. This is wisdom for the heart and today's lesson is called forgiven forgot Indian tribes in our own country had ancient practices of animal and human sacrifice, the Aztecs, who have been touted in recent years a some all wise spirit saturated people in tune with a great divine literally with her complex ritual calendar sacrificed thousands of human beings every single year, Chinese and Celtic history alike include the religious practices of child sacrifice ancient Greece to go back in time, discovered a practice called foundation sacrifices work.
They would take little children and bury them alive in the foundations of their great temples, hoping that that would somehow ensure the pleasure of their God go to India you'll discover a highly developed system of sacrifice, and you'll also see a history wherein the Israeli sacrificed human beings as substitutes for their own sin in their own mortality Middle East. The practice of offering children goes back to Old Testament days were aware of the God Molex from Old Testament Scriptures cruel and gruesome practice. Malec was shown to be some statue of a human body and in the head of an oxen is inside would be hollow. He would be standing on a low oven than they would use that I would stoke the fire until the statue was hot. It would place into the hollow there in his belly. The children then with the beating of drums they would drown out the screams of those kids up through the last century, children of been thrown in the rivers to appease the gods throughout the history of mankind. Sacrifices have been offered to God for everything from sunshine for rain for harvest for victory in war for the barren womb for diseases for prosperity, and most often for the appeasement of the angry deities making the satisfaction of the gods. By the way is simply unbelieving man giving credit to the truth of Scripture that we have already learned in Romans chapter 2 work mankind has the law of God written on his heart and his mind and he does things not ever having read the copy of this law. He does things to prove that there is indeed some cities aware of, and there is an angry divine being a must appease the Greek Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church teach a form of appeasement called the doctrine of purgatory. Purgatory comes from the Latin verb which means to cleanse the word never appears in the New Testament it appears in the fictitious apocryphal book called second Maccabees that most believe, was written late in order to simply prove what they believe these churches basically teach millions of followers around the world that purgatory is a place where imperfect people go in order to make amends for their sin. You can go directly to heaven unless you're perfect and since nobody's perfect. Everybody in some parts, some way spend some time in the tormenting cleansing fires of this place called purgatory and he might stay there a few days you might stay there a thousand years depending on how much sin must be burned away as you are purged or cleansed by fire. The only hope you have of limiting the time in purgatory or having a shortness of the prayers of priests still living and masses provided by relatives or friends on behalf of the deceased. Every practicing Roman Catholic, was offered an incredible opportunity. Those who believe in this extra-biblical doctrine for the Pope declared the year 2000 to be a year of Jubilee. Any dedicated certain cathedrals as sacred sites and claim that those who went and off and celebrated mass in those cathedrals. During this Jubilee year of 2000, would be guaranteed never to spend any time in purgatory doctrine of purgatory was reaffirmed by the Council throughout the years and again at the Council of Trent in 1545.
Of course, it was rejected by the leaders of the Reformation going directly to the New Testament Scriptures to say what is the Bible teach and they gleaned from the word of God. The people who believe in Christ by faith alone when they die they go straight to heaven upon their death. There is no intermediate state. There is no making of amends for Christ as made amends complete, so Paul could say that the Corinthian believers to be absent from the body. That is to be dead physically to be absent from the body is to be present where with the Lord Jesus Christ could say to the dying thief. One is certainly a long list of crimes. One who would certainly need to make amends you and say to him in 2000 years or 3000 years you'll be with me in paradise. He said today you will be with me in paradise.
The point remains. Millions of people around the world, and all sorts of religions are basically attempting to appease what they believe to be there living God, to make atonement for their sin. Somehow earn their way to heaven for those who claim to know this. True living God to do anything like that means that you do not understand even the basic truth of awful depravity. The offensiveness of sin, the bankruptcy of our lives in the holiness and the justice of God. Somehow God could be satisfied with a few prayers and a few coins and then the other puny effort on our part can imagine just by way of a rather trite illustration but may like a little clearer can imagine today after church. Everybody rushes for their car take too much of an imagination, but just imagine you're in a hurry were going all beat the Methodist to the restaurants right so you get in your car and you rev it up and you and you said maybe new PO out and you lose control and use mash into the side of another car, make it worse.
He smashed into the side of a pickup truck. A blue pickup truck just recently been washed and I'm walking out there to get in the my beloved truck and I see it happen. You get out and you come to mean so I am sorry I lost control of the debt they want to do a give you everything I've got you polite your wallet, your open arms.
I got a dollar and here I give me the dollar will that satisfy what is satisfying.
Absolutely not a life of servitude, maybe, but not a dollar bill.
Can you imagine multiplying that a million times over.
We pulverize the holy command of God. God is watching and we got really sorry to give you everything we've got a little Monday we have a little prayers. We have a few good deeds and we promise this church again that satisfy you realize that over the course of an average lifetime. The average person will spend. I have read three years in meeting 19 years sleeping six years eating and five years waiting in line. If that same person never missed a Sunday morning church service. Their entire life. They will have spent 5 1/2 months in church magic five years waiting in line, five months corporately waiting on God. God we want to be impressed with the fact we asked God isn't impressed. Question remains, then how do you satisfy the true living God sacrifices is itself a basement as it penances is purgatory's was the Bible say less. The question that Paul is begun answering in Romans chapter 3 is described the doctrine of God's satisfaction in Romans chapter 4 he illustrates the doctrine in Romans three it is truth by proposition in chapter 4. It is truth by personality is not relevant in the flash of a human being is to show us what justification by faith looks like.
In fact, reading between the lines with me as we go through this next text and you will discover what it feels like he has chosen the life of Abraham, the great patriarch and basically said he's not getting at unless God does.
Many thanks David and says, in effect, the same thing.
So what is not a stake in the greatest patriarch and said he's short. And now he's taken the greatest monarch said he's come short as well and he will tell us now by looking at David's life what it means to be justified by faith alone in our last study we looked at the history of David sinful life.
He remember he lived a life of outward obedience. But inside there was a hidden life that included coveting his neighbor's wife, and even beyond that to adultery with her and then planning the death of her husband and and the lying and hypocrisy and he covered it all off, Paul will use David ladies and gentlemen as an illustration of undeserved grace of unmerited favor, so he began his by quoting the words of David that he penned after he confessed his sin.
A great song that's often overlooked is Psalm 32. That's where this quote comes from is David now has openly confessed his sin to the Lord. Look at what he says. Just as David verse six also speaks of the blessing upon the man to whom God reckons righteousness apart from works. Blessed are those whose lawless deeds have been forgiven, and whose sins have been covered.
Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not take into account three wonderful words in this text you want to underline the first word is in the middle of verse seven is the word forgiven and then at the latter part of verse seven, the word covered and then at the end of verse eight accounts or maybe impute in your text following it is briefly look at those three words.
First of all, David says. Blessed are those whose lawless deeds have been forgiven. The Greek word, or verb for forgiven is a fitting me, which has the idea of being carried away, so wonderful Old Testament picture and it is illustrated in the life of the last Old Testament prophet John the baptizer who seeing Jesus Christ said, behold the Lamb of God who takes away removes it.
David, as he wrote here now is no doubt thinking of the practices of the Old Testament atonement for sin once a year, according to Leviticus chapter 16 the high priest would have brought to him two goats before the altar and one God would be put to death, his blood shed an innocent animal dying for a sinful, guilty man, then the high priest would take the living goat and he would place his hands on the head of that goat and Moses would write he would confess over it.
All of the inequities of the sons of Israel, and all their transgressions in regard to all their sins, and he shall lay them, as it were ceremonially on the head of the goat and send it away send it away into the wilderness.
It was William Tyndale in the 16th century translated the Old Testament and he invented a word for this goat. It's the word scapegoat the living goat would bear the sin. This one would be the scapegoat that is this one is innocent, but he is bearing the guilt of those who are not innocent.
We use the same phrase of this day century later, we talk about some company folds in somebody's leg. We know that person probably just the scapegoat. They were innocent, but they paid the penalty for it. That's the idea of Peter when he he wrote of Christ, he himself bore our sins on his body on the tree, that we, being dead to sin were the ones guilty of the sin could live in a righteousness. Jesus Christ is the ultimate and final scapegoat who has borne the sin away.
Isaiah said the same thing. In fact, that was I think the predominant thought in his mind. Listen to this text. With this in mind, he said. Surely our dreams. He himself bore and our sorrows carried he was pierced through fraud transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities.
The chastening for our well-being fell upon him.
The Lord has caused the iniquity of us all fall on him and others.
Jesus Christ is the ultimate and final scapegoat of atoning law he carried away the blame credited to our account. He's innocent or guilty. He had laid on him the guilt a little to David. Understanding that now is not simply writing. Blessed is the one was a sins taken away. He's actually thinking theologically to that law, the old covenant, saying, in effect, Blessed is the one who is had the blame for his sins placed on the scapegoat that ultimate Redeemer and he himself, though guilty is allowed to go free. There's another illustration of cleansing from guilt in regard to the lepers of the old covenant throughout the Old Testament the old covenant leprosy was considered an act of God's judgment. In fact, it was one of the things that God used to discipline rebelling sons and daughters of Israel and and it was an outward sign of his displeasure. Unfortunately, the church in the early centuries especially failed to distinguish Israel from the New Testament church and therefore applied much of the old covenant and its regulations and its laws to the New Testament believer. One of the results of that form of interpretation is in regard to relation the lepers, the church for centuries assumed that leprosy was still the sign of God's judgment fact in the Middle Ages, the church would have a burial service for one leprosy priest would come in and walk down the aisle holding his crucifix wearing his robe and installing the leper would come behind them dressed in black and they go up to the alternate read over in the last rites even though he was alive.
He was considered dead will in the Old Testament, the leper repented it an interesting practice. The leper would bring to the priest to birds. The priest would kill one bird and sprinkle his blood on a living and some of the blood on the leper as a sign of his atonement, and then he would take the priest would take the living bird that had the blood of the dead bird sprinkled on it and he would go to a meadow or a field left as the bird flew away. He symbolically carried away the guilt of sin. The verb here. I love Donald Ray Barnhouse's comment in reference to this custom. He said just as that free flying bird flew into the heavens.
So Christ ascending into the heavens signify that our guilt was carried away. Ladies and gentlemen, this is on earned freedom.
This is unmerited grace and it is received with joy at all you can say is how blessed is the man who is had is guilt second word and David's song is the word covered. Blessed are those whose sins have been covered again in Old Testament times. David Wright goes back to the day of atonement, the high priest would take the blood of the ball and he would walk into the holy of holies. Sprinkle that blood on the mercy seat, which was the lid of the ark of the covenant there. God's glory would reside inside that box. Among other things, were the tablets of the law. That law had been broken every one of those commands had been violated, crushed by the activity of the Israelite and so once a year. The priest would bring in the blood of the innocent animal that would atone in his death for them. He take the blood and he cover he'd sprinkled over that box on top of that lid as if to say then that God would look from above, and he would see the broken law, but he would see it through the blood covered got accepted that annual sacrifice, the people would celebrate with great joy and so David takes you back to the scene where the priest emerges with a smile on his face. Sin for another year has been covered. How blessed is the man whose sin is been covered. Can you imagine our great joy as we know these symbols and the sacrifices pointed to the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus Christ once and for all wood and the practice and do away with sin.
Hebrews 10 verse 10 for the Old Testament, saying his sin would be temporarily covered as it were, to David's ticket to heaven then was still needing payment full and final payment and that would be paid in Christ.
Yet in the future for David Frost, the payment of Christ for our ticket to heaven was in the past.
Now some 2000 years. Every sin David committed was ultimately paid for in Christ that was part of what Christ bore on the cross means that every sin you committed was also placed in Christ, which means that your sins of the future have already been paid for by Christ realize what that means.
That means that on the cross, Jesus Christ paid for all of your sin, and he had to pay for all of it, which is an amazing thought, because God back then knew what you would do today Jesus Christ paid for them incredible.
God knows what you will do tomorrow and the next day. In fact, for the rest of your life and that's part of the amazing grace of God that God knew you would sin. He had a son pay for it and then he watches you commit that sin and knowing full well the agony that his son went through foreign he sees you 2000 years later he still is. You how blessed is the man say our sin has been covered finally fully the third word David uses is the word Paul spends a lot of time on in verse eight Paul writes Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not take into account word look good so my gives us our word logic, but it's actually an accounting term. You can rendering God doesn't keep a tabulation or an account of sin atone for in Christ.
The same word appears up in verse three. Look there. Romans chapter 4 it's a positive statement there. Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned same. It was imputed. It was accounted to him as righteousness, and there is positive now.
Would David is negative, the Lord will not impute or account or reckoned sin.
So in terms of the record of your life. He removes all of the sin accounts nothing of it to your account, and he places on your account.
All of the righteousness of Jesus Christ. In other words, the ledger of the believer's life has had every sin erased and every page in bossed with the righteousness of Christ. He doesn't reckon to your account the sin he reckon it's uses that word over and over again reckons this and reckons that it tells us that Paul was originally from North Carolina reckoned all the stuff is amazing to me when people go through to have their name cleared Jay Leno the host of the Tonight Show spent an incredible amount of money having his name cleared up. If you can believe it when he was in high school 30 years ago. The article said he was suspended from burning rubber in the church parking lot that tells you how far we've come to be suspended for that he was suspended for three days. One of the incidents stricken from his high school records and so he donated recently, $250,000 worth of computer equipment to his high school in exchange for having that incident removed from his school record $250,000 for a clean high school record but you know what I thought about it more thought. That's because there's going to come a day when all the world will stand before for the unbelieving world. It will be too late, but they would give anything at that moment to give everything away that they had everything they ever hope to have everything they owned or possessed. They would give it all the way in exchange for having their slate clean for the believer. How blessed is the man or woman who is trusted the work of Christ alone, the one whose work allows no sin to be imputed to your account. How blessed will it be for us to stand before God.
One day, and for him to look at you and say all you I know you listen. I have already forgiven all of your wickedness and I will remember your sins. Nomar Jeremiah 3130.
I know your wife as far as the east is from the west, so I have already removed your transgressions from you. Psalm 103 verse 12. In other words, God will save the redeemed this and I have already chosen.
I have already remembered to forget anything you've ever done because my son pays 100 David have his case was hopeless and you know what your case is hopeless. In my case is hopeless as well. You and I have a horrible record of sin. We know in our own minds and our own memories. There is a single person among us when done many things you are ashamed of. Not one of you know even today the depths of the battle that you're facing in your own mind. With the memory of those offenses against God, and you know the current struggle you have with the filth of your own flesh.
None of us in our condition could ever merits. We could never earn or deserve the grace of God we simply by faith handed him, as it were, the ledger of our lives. If this were the first sin I ever committed this were the last sin I ever committed in my life.
I go to him and I offer him the filthy ledger of my life to please the father to bruise the son and he laid on him the iniquity of us all hands back to me.
You clean ledger until we find is the righteousness of Christ. How blessed is the one whose sins have been forgiven, whose lawless deeds have been covered one to whom God will not take sin into account the declaration of joy.
I think probably in the heart of Horatio Spafford as he wrote the same idea when he and mice sin. All of the lists of this glorious thought my sin not in part but the hall is nailed to the cross and die no more. Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord all my soul. Now, Blessed is the man whose sins have been forgiven from God. Isn't that a great way to end this lesson and this week of Bible teaching. There are several more lessons to go in this series and will pick right up here next time. This is wisdom for the heart with our Bible teacher, Stephen Devi before we and today I want to share and note we received here at the office a couple from Florida said hello from Tampa several months ago we shared the ministry of wisdom for the heart, with our blind friend named John. He's been listening to Stephen's messages regularly and tells us that he's been greatly encouraged, especially during these weeks of quarantine. Thank you for delivering God's word accurately, faithfully, joyfully and encouragingly. Well, thank you so much for taking the time to send us that note were glad that God is using this ministry in your life and in John's life. We know it's been a difficult year. But God's word is what sustains us all. I want to mention to all of you that we certainly hope you're able to worship your church family on Sunday mornings. But if that's not possible for you.
You can watch Stephen live online each Sunday.
The link and information you need are on our website or on our free wisdom international website. This wisdom online.org. Thanks so much for being with us today and join us Monday for more for the hearts