THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT
Program Air Date - 10-16-05
LESSON TITLE: "GREAT LESSONS FROM THE SERMON ON THE MOUNT: SAYING LORD, LORD IS NOT ENOUGH"
This morning we assemble before "God our Savior, who alone is wise," and we praise Him as one worthy of "glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever!" These words we share with the inspired Jude, from verse 25 of his book!
We are truly excited to have you with us today as we together break the Living Word of God. We are certainly glad that you have chosen this day, to give this time to our Creator - so that together we may Worship and Praise His Holy name!
As we come together this day, it is my hope and prayer that we will each participate and do our part to make this time acceptable before God. As a collective offering of those who love God, and who are willing to submit their own sacrifices before His throne.
So, At this time, as we turn our full attention to the reason we have come together, let's approach our Father's throne in prayer:
One of the greatest blessing from God is that fact that He gave His only Son to die for our sins! This morning we want to begin with a song that reminds us of this great sacrifice which was made. So, won't you join in and participate with the congregation at this time as we sing together, "Low In The Grave He Lay!"
(SONG # 1)
How often do we all make mistakes in this life? We probably all sin more that we would like to admit and we wish we could always hide these things from others, and especially God.
We are not the first to conveniently forget that God is all-powerful, all-knowing, and everywhere! Remember in the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve tried to hide from God after they sinned by eating the forbidden fruit. And as we all know they did not get away with it and eventually they were punished for their sin.
I am afraid that you and I are just as delusional from time to time. Because we do things that we shouldn't and continue to act as if God didn't see us or as if He doesn't know that we did them. Yet the reality is our God knows and sees all and we can never hide our actions and words from Him.
Let me encourage us all to be bold in Christ and to have the heart of David, when he said, "search me, o God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties," Psalm 139:23. This knowledge that God not only can know but does know everything about us will help us to do our best and to strive to be pure in His sight. So let me ask, "are you living every day as if God is always by your side, as one who knows and sees all." Or "are you living your life in a way that shows you feel you are able to hide and keep things from your Creator. May we never deceive ourselves, but rather live as if God is always there!
In just a few minutes it will be time to begin our main study of the day. Our topic of study today, will again deal with another "Great Lessons From The Sermon On The Mount." The specific title of the morning is, "Saying Lord, Lord Is Not Enough."
As far as our speaker of the day, we are happy to again have brother Max Patterson with us. Brother Patterson is one of the instructors at the Bible Institute of Missouri here in Springfield. We thank brother Max for being with us this day. So please stay with us for this study from God's Word, and at the appropriate time brother Patterson will be leading our main thoughts from God's Precious Word. Now let's join together in our next song of the morning. The name of this hymn, "All Hail The Power Of Jesus Name."
(SONG # 2)
Speaker: Max Patterson
Thank you and good morning, ladies and gentlemen. It's good to have you in the audience today as we continue our study of the great teachings in the teaching on the mount or the Sermon on the Mount.
Today's lesson comes from Matthew 7 and 21 that simply says, "Not everyone that sayeth unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he that doeth the Will of My Father which is in heaven." In this passage, we can readily see that it is not enough to just say, Lord, Lord, or to call on the name of the Lord. We must also do His Will, not the one that says, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he that does the Will of My Father which is in heaven. There are many passages in the New Testament that echo this very thought.
For example, the Hebrews writer says in Hebrews 5:8, 9, "Though He were a son, yet learned the obedience by the things which He suffered and being made perfect, He became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him."
We are told by the Thessalonian letter that "The Lord is coming back and He is going to take vengeance upon those who know not God and who obey not the gospel."
So there is something for us to do. There is something that people are not doing if He is going to take vengeance upon those who obey not the gospel. So it is important for us to understand the gospel and it is also important for us to not only believe the gospel but to obey the gospel.
The book of Revelation almost closes with the words "Blessed are they that do His commandments that they might have the right to the tree of life and may enter in through the gates into the city." So it is important for us to do the Will of our Father which is in heaven.
I wonder if you understand that there are two different kinds of commandments in the Bible. There are those that we might consider to be moral in nature. These are commandments that are practical and right in the very nature of the case. Such commandments, these moral commandments that we're talking about, are such commandments as: "You shall not murder. You shall not steal. You shall not kill. You shall not commit adultery." Those are the kinds of commandments that we're saying are moral in nature. These have always been true. They have not been true just since Sinai where the Lord delivered the Ten Commandments, but they've always been true. Now, why were these written down in the Old Testament if we live under Christianity and we do live under Christianity. We don't live under the Old Testament and nine of those ten commandments in the original ten commandments are also found in the New Testament under Christianity. Why were these written down? Well Paul answers this in part in Romans 7 and 13 that "Sin by the commandment might become exceedingly sinful."
Written laws have a way of stamping upon our hearts the importance of what is being commanded and what the Will of the Lord really is and so they were written down so that they may be read over and over and over again so that they could be indelibly stamped upon the hearts and minds of men and women, boys and girls. There are these commandments then that we might call moral commandments. They are moral in nature, practical and right and essential. They've always been right and disobeying them has always been wrong, so it is important that we live the kind of moral and ethical life that is taught in the scriptures.
But there is another kind of commandment that many people in the world do not pay much attention to and do not obey as they ought to and these might be called "God's positive, spiritual laws." Now the moral law was right, was given because it was right, but these positive, spiritual laws are right only because they're given. Now there are several types of these laws. For example, there are those laws in which there is no visible connection between the law that is being given and the blessing that will be received as a result of obeying these laws. These laws are a kind of test for our loyalty. In fact, these are the kinds of laws that are given for the purpose of testing our loyalty. Men may keep the moral law for a number of reasons, but not necessarily for the purpose of honoring God. For example, there are people who are respectable and they want to keep out of jail and some folks are just naturally law-abiding and so they may keep these commandments, every one of them, but not for the purpose of honoring God. But this is not true of God's positive, spiritual laws. The only reason one would live a lifetime keeping these positive, spiritual laws is because he wants to honor and be true to God.
Now let me illustrate and give you an example of one of these positive, spiritual laws. These laws are somewhat arbitrary on the part of God. In the Old Testament, there is the example of God telling the Israelites to put the blood on the door post and on the lentil so that when He passed through, He would pass over them, which became the model for the great Passover Feast. So God passed over them and did not harm them and so this Passover Feast involved putting blood on the door post and on the door lentil or the top of the door that holds the, the superstructure that holds the part above the door up. Now, why would God tell people to put blood on the door post and on the door lentil? It doesn't, from a human point of view, doesn't make a bit of sense. It's unreasonable. It doesn't make any sense at all, but God said that to test their loyalty, to test their faith. God is asking in a sense, "Are you on My side? Do you believe in Me? Do you trust in Me? Will you follow Me? Put blood on the door post and on the door lentil." So God is using this as a means of testing their loyalty.
Now there is another kind or another dimension to this kind of positive, spiritual law and these are laws in which there is no visible connection between the thing being commanded and the blessing received, but also with the added factor that the command is actually obnoxious to the person to whom it is being given. And a good example of that is Naaman in 2 Kings 5. Naaman is told to go down to the River Jordan and dip in the River Jordan seven times to be cleansed of his leprosy. Now you tell me what reason there is for a man to go down to an old, dirty, muddy river and dip in it seven times to be cleansed of his leprosy. Nobody else had ever done that and as far as I know, nobody ever did that after that. But he was told, Naaman was told to go down and dip seven times in the River Jordan. It's an example of God's way of testing our loyalty. Do we believe in God? Do we trust God? Are we really ready to do anything he says regardless of what it is? Well, Naaman was not ready to do that and he got mad and somebody persuaded him that he ought to do it and finally did go down and when he had dipped seven times in the River Jordan, the Bible says that "The flesh on his body was like that of a little child."
Now there's a third dimension to these kinds of positive, spiritual laws. The third dimension or the third type of command is not only when there is no connection with the law that is given and the blessing that is to be received and the command may even be obnoxious to the person whom it is being given, but the command itself would actually wrong if it were not for the fact that God authorized the commanding or did the commanding. A good example of this is God telling Abraham in Genesis 22:1, to "Go and offer your son on the altar." You recall the story about how God told Abraham how He wanted him to take his son, his only son, Isaac, and offer him on an altar in a mountain in which He would show him. So Abraham did this. What God is doing is testing Abraham's faith and I'm happy to tell you that he passed the test because he was willing to do that and yet you know the story about how before the dagger or the knife or spear was thrust into him to kill him, to offer him for a sacrifice, God stopped him and God said, "Now I know that you fear Me." So God is testing Abraham's faith. He is wanting to know how Abraham will trust Him, how far he will go.
Well, let's bring this down to our own day and let's make some application to our own day and time. What is the difference between these two classes of commands, one moral and one arbitrary or God's positive, spiritual laws?
Well, one commends itself to the intelligence of the doer. For example, you know why it's wrong to kill. You can't just kill people that you don't like. You cannot just take their life away from them. Our world would be in a state of chaos and in some parts of the world it is in a state of chaos because people just arbitrarily kill one another. You cannot steal. You cannot refuse to respect the property rights of others. Thou shall not steal. Thou shall not abuse mankind. Thou shall not commit adultery. We know what a terrible state the country would be in if we violated these moral laws. So these moral laws commend themselves to our intelligence. But the other, God's positive, spiritual laws are obeyed only because one wants to obey God and it's precisely here that the religious world falters and falls flat on its face. I don't mean to be disrespectful in saying it that way, but you see, to the religious world, faith is reasonable so they believe in faith. Repentance is reasonable, so they believe in repentance. Even among some, confession is reasonable. But let's take one of the most controversial steps in the plan of salvation, baptism for the remission of sins. This is considered unreasonable and so it is rejected by the world, but it is the Lord who commanded it. It is the Lord who said, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved." It is Peter by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit that says on the Day of Pentecost, "Repent and be baptized for the remission of sins." So you see, people reject it and say that it is unreasonable and they are not going to do it because it does not agree with their way of looking at things, but it is God's way. It is what God wants and so people are failing because they are not willing to follow God, but they are willing to follow their own way.
Which leads me to say that there are many people failing the loyalty test that God has for us. Some of the very people who claim "faith is necessary" may be lost because they didn't believe what God said and so obedience. "Not everyone who sayeth unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he that doeth the Will of My Father which is in heaven." Do you want to go to heaven? I want to go to heaven more than anything else in the world, but the only way that I know I can go to heaven is be doing the Lord's Will, doing only His Will and so it is important for me to do three things. I want to do what God said to do because He became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him. Number 2, I want to do it in the way God said to do it if that way is stated. For example, when I partake of the Lord's Supper to remember the death of Christ on the cross. We partake of unleavened bread and fruit of the vine because this is what is specified. So not only am I commanded to partake of the Lord's Supper each first day of the week, but I am told what the ingredients in that supper or what those ingredients are and so we use unleavened bread and fruit of the vine. It is baptism for the remission of sins by a burial in water as Paul taught in Romans 6:3,4, so then that's what we do. We do things God's way. Then the third and final thing is to do whatever is God has commanded for the reason God said, whenever that reason is stated. For example, baptism is stated, the reason for it is stated and it is said that it is for the forgiveness of sins. "Repent and be baptized," Peter said, "for the forgiveness of sins." Acts 2:38. That is, we are to repent and be baptized and that puts us into the body of Christ and it is in the body of Christ where we are to live the Christian life. Be faithful unto death.
I hope this lesson has helped you to see that it is important for us to obey God, not our own wills, but to obey God and to obey Him in the way that He has suggested that we do it. Thank you and good day.
(SONG # 3 - "There Is A Place Of Quiet Rest!")
Let me thank you again for choosing to be with us today. What a glorious time we have had before the throne of God. We invite you to join us every First day of the week, at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this time of Worship before God!
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May we all learn the important lesson of the day from Christ, that It is never enough just to speak His name or claim we are His followers! The Lord says the true proof that one is a child of God is found in "doing the will of our Father in Heaven!"