Program Air Date - -7-30-06



Today we have woke up to another beautiful, wonderful and blessed day, thanks to our God and Father in Heaven. How exciting it is to gather this morning as the children of God to Worship and Praise the name of our Creator! So may I welcome you to the study of God's Living Word on this His special day! We are certainly glad that you have put God first today and that you have decided to give this time to Him. As you know, we will have the privilege this morning to sing songs of praise, as well to study His precious Word, and to approach the throne of God in prayer. So, at this time may we start our praise to God by talking with our Father in prayer. Bow with me please!


Now it's time to join in song to praise our God. Our first song of the day reminds us of the wondrous grace which our God has so richly offered us! So, at this time won't you join in with the congregation as we sing together, "His Grace Reaches Me!"

(SONG # 1)


Do you ever have struggles in this life? Or maybe a more accurate question would be, "how many struggles do you have to deal with in your daily life?" The reality is many things happen in life which bring us down or discourage us.

However, as Children of God, we have some promises and hope that others without God do not have. For example, in Galatians 6, we read that we are to help each other in time of need. This means that when I have a problem, my brethren are there to help. Do we turn to our brothers and sisters in Christ when we need help?

Another verse which helps us to know that we are not alone in dealing with the issues of life is found in 1 Corinthians 10:13. There we read, "No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it." So we not only have our brethren to helps us in life, but we also have God. And in this text we even learn that God will help us to know what to do and how to do it so that we will not be over burdened. Do we turn to God in times of need and when we need help.

Finally, notice what the Hebrews writer said in Hebrews 13:5, here we read, "For He Himself has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you." Wow, what a comfort and what an encouragement. God is always there and we will never be alone. No wonder the same writer went on to say in verse 6 of the same opening, "The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?"?We truly serve a great and mighty God. Have you placed your trust and confidence in God today?

In just a few minutes it will be time to begin our main study of the day. As far as our lesson topic today, we will be continuing our series entitled, "God's Truth." The specific lesson of the day will focus on, "The Truth Unto Salvation!" So, please stay with us this morning and in just a few minutes I will be leading us in this study from God's Word. Now it is time to join together in our second song of the day. The name of this hymn, "Let Jesus Come Into Your Heart."

(SONG # 2)


Speaker: Ray Sullins

We're glad you stayed with us this morning and now we go back to Gods' Word in order that we might understand even more about His precious Truth as we've looked together in this series about "Gods' Truth."

We're going to begin finalizing some of our thoughts today about the Truth of God as we have certainly seen that we do have the Truth. We can know the Truth and that the Bible is full of exactly what God wants and what He requires. How exciting it is to know that God cared enough that He would give us such information and that we wouldn't have to wonder or question or really be saying, "Why didn't God tell us?" because He did. I think many in the religious world are confused about that and that is why we've had this series on the Truth. We can know the Truth and the Bible says, "We can know it unto salvation." So if we can know it, that means God gave it to us and He gave it to us in His Word. So as we understand how we can know the Truth, there's an area this day that we would like to cover so that we might understand that the Truth gives us all of the knowledge that we need not only pertaining to the Christian life, but today we'll focus on pertaining to becoming a Christian.

There's often a lot of confusion throughout the world, throughout history on what it takes to become a child of God. What is the step? What is the moment? What is the point when a person leaves the old life of sin and becomes a child of God? The scriptures being Truth again are very clear not only by command, but as well by example of those things that a person must do in order that they become a child of God. In other words, one moment they're a child of Satan. They're not in God. They're without God. And the next moment, they are a child of the King, of God. They have eternal life in their hands and they have the blessings of God.

What certainly then must be the first thing that an individual must do before they can ever respond to the Truth? They must hear it. You know every example that we have in scriptures show us that at some point people either had to read and study or hear the Truth before they could be saved. There are so many examples of that that I really don't know where to go to start, but one specifically that stands out in my mind first of all is first of all in Acts chapter 2. In Acts chapter 2 but in verse 37. It is interesting because that is the day the church began. I want you to notice what it begins to say in that verse. "And when they heard this..." You see, Peter had just preached to them the gospel. He just preached that you have just killed the Son of God, the One that was the Messiah sent by God to save your souls. "And when they heard this, when they heard the Truth." You see, they had to hear it first.

Another good example is there the Ethiopian Eunuch. You find a man that was already studying the Word of God there in Acts chapter 8 and he was actually reading from a scroll he had that must have been a scroll from the prophet Isaiah. He was reading there about Christ, about Jesus, about the Lamb being brought before the shearer. But now as we read the text, we find that the Holy Spirit sent Philip that he might teach him. Why? Because of exactly what the Eunuch said when Philip asked him, "Do you understand what you're reading?" He was reading the Word of God. The Eunuch says, "How can I except someone should guide me?" You see, we must hear the Word and study it and understand it. And generally what we find is that it takes one with the knowledge of Gods' Word to help us really to fully comprehend and know what He wants. No doubt, that's why in Romans chapter 10 verse 17 we read, "For faith comes by hearing." You see, we've got to hear the Word of God. So how exciting it is to be a part of a program like this, to be a part of different groups, and a church that reaches out with the Truth that people might hear because without hearing today in Springfield, throughout Missouri, throughout the United States or anywhere in the world, without hearing, you cannot believe in God.

That leads us to the next point. Faith comes by hearing. Faith. What is faith? Faith is an active belief. You see, when we hear, what is the natural thing that one must do after hearing? Believe. They must believe. No doubt that is why we read in John 8:24, "Except you believe that I am He," Jesus said, "you will die in your sins." "Except you believe that I am the Christ, you will die in your sins." You see, belief is of the utmost importance. There in Mark 16 and verse 16, he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved. He that believes shall be saved. Belief is a requirement. The natural progression after one would hear the Word of God and know who God is and understand what He offers is that that person would then believe. And so belief is certainly an essential part as well.

Go back to the example there in Acts chapter 8 of the Eunuch. We find again the very same thing. After he had talked to him of Jesus, he read the Word. He heard it. He was taught it and after he had heard these things, he began to ask Philip a question there in the text. He says, "Here is water, what hinders me from being baptized?" In verse 37 notice that Philip says, "If you believe with all of your heart, you may." I want you to notice what the Eunuch said. The Eunuch said, "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God." Well, isn't that a wonderful statement? Isn't that a fabulous concept? A great idea as we find here that the belief was confessed. It was confessed in God. And so we hear and then we believe it, but then as we just saw the Eunuch had to confess that belief and then so that leads us to the next thing. Confession with the mouth. Confession must be made unto salvation.

If you would, I wish you would turn there to the book of Romans. We don't want to assume any of these things. We don't want to say that this is what I believe or what some church says. Let's again look to the Word of God, the Truth and see what it says about the need for confession with the mouth. We've seen the need to hear, to believe, but what about confessing the name of Christ? We find that in Romans chapter 10 beginning in verse 9 notice what he told the Roman church. Verse 9 says, "And if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart in God and then he raised him from the dead, you will be saved." He says there, "Look, if you believe..." There it is again. If you believe what? What you've heard. What you've been taught. If you believe and you confess His name, the Lord Jesus. Verse 10 goes on to say, "For with the heart one believes..." There's the belief. And he goes on to say, "Unto righteousness and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation." Another great part. Confession unto salvation. It's a step toward it. It is something I must do. I must confess as I have peer pressure. I think I need to confess, but I don't really believe. Is confession then worth anything? Certainly not. So they're all a part. I must hear it. I must believe it. I must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. I'm reminded of that great confession being made, one of the first examples that we have of it, there in Matthew chapter 16 when the Lord says, "I will build My church." If you might recall there, he was asking His disciples, "Who do people say that I am?" in verse 15. In verse 16, hear what Peter said. Simon Peter answered and said, "You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God." Jesus turns around in the next verse and says, "Simon, you are blessed. Flesh and blood couldn't have told you this, only My Father could have revealed it." Revealed what? The belief that Jesus is the Christ, He is the Messiah and He is the very son of God, the only begotten Son (John 3:16). You see, he made the confession with the mouth and then Jesus turns around and He says, "Peter, upon this rock..." What did Peter just do? He made the great confession that Christ is Lord and He is the Son of God. "Upon this rock, I will build My church." It is Jesus' church, is it not? Certainly it is. He heard. He believed. He confessed the name of Jesus and all these things led to the salvation, the salvation of an individual.

Not only that, but we also saw a need for repentance. And several examples not only in the book of Acts, but also in other places we find the individual needing to repent. What is repentance? Well, Jesus said there in Luke 13:3, "Except ye repent, you will all likewise perish." But I want you to notice with me in 2 Corinthians what repentance is defined as. In chapter 7 of 2 Corinthians you might note with me there in verse 8, He says that he "made them sorry for a little while." But notice in verse 9 what he goes on to say. "Now I rejoice not that you are made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance." Now notice that. Sorrow. Sorry about what? Sin. When we hear the Word of God and we hear who Christ is and He died for what? My sins. Well, that should make us sorry. It should make us give in to what? Repentance. It should make us sorry unto what? Repentance. I no longer want to sin. I want to change and leave sin and turn away from it. Verse 10 goes on to say, "For godly sorrow produces (what?) repentance." And notice what he also adds, "Repentance leading to salvation." Wow! Repentance is a requirement. Repent or perish. We must have that godly sorrow knowing that what Christ did for me, for my sins, and then knowing that I will repent and turn away because of that godly sorrow from the old sinful man to a new man in Christ Jesus.

But now what's the final thing it seems the text talks about that brings all this to fruition that I understand that it culminates my salvation, that shows God in action, not just in thought and in word, but in action that allows my fellow man to know that I am now a child of God? Well if you go back to Acts chapter 2 what do we read? There in verse 38 he says, "Repent and be baptized." In Mark 16 and verses 15-16 he says, "Go into all the world and preach," but then he says, "He that believes and is (what?) baptized shall be saved." I want you also to notice there in Acts 22 and verse 16 where Ananias told Paul, "Arise and be baptized and wash away your sins." Same idea back in Acts chapter 2 and verse 38, "Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ." Why? "For the remission of sins." "Arise and be baptized," Acts 22:16. Why? Why, Ananias? To wash away your sins. In Galatians 27 it says there, "As many of you have put on Christ have been baptized into Christ." It says, "Be baptized into Christ." Peter talks about there in 1 Peter chapter 3 and verse 21, he says, "There is an anti-type just like Noah was saved in the flood and from the flood in the ark," he says, "There is an anti-type today that saves us." What do you think it is? The text says baptism again. Baptism saves us. The one baptism is mentioned in Ephesians chapter 4, verses 3-6. "There is but one baptism." The same baptism that we turn now to the book of Romans and find confirmation of as he explains what it is about. Why should I be baptized? Why after hearing, and believing and confessing the name of Christ and repenting, why must I be baptized? Because it says in verse 3, "Do you not know that as many of you as were baptized were baptized into the death of Christ. Therefore we were buried with Him in baptism into death that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, we are united together in the likeness of His resurrection. Therefore, dying to the old man, crucifying Him that the body of sin might be done away." Repentance. Turning away from that body of sin that is left dead in the grave and turning away to a new man, a new creation, a new creation that is referred to in 2 Corinthians chapter 5 and verse 17.

"When we have done all of these things, God adds us to the church," Acts 2:47. Now is there one more important than the other? Certainly not. If I'm baptized but I don't confess the name of my Savior, no. If I hear, believe and repent and confess, but I am not baptized, can I be saved? No. What if I have been baptized and I confess but I am unwilling to repent truly and turn away from those old sins and focus on Christ, can I be saved? No. You see, the reality is that there are several things required unto salvation, in salvation, and it is all found in the Truth, all important and just as significantly important as the other that one might be added by the Lord to His church. So the question is yours. Have you done what God requires that you might be saved, that your sins are washed away, that you're considered a new creature in Jesus Christ? Have you died to the old man and buried him in the grave just as Jesus was buried and have you rose out of the watery grave in a figurative way to symbolically know in your life and that all the world might as well know that you now are that child of God. And then how important to live the life, the life of a Christian. Revelation 2:10, "Be faithful unto death to receive the crown of life." It's not enough just to become a Christian. There's a life to live. Are you willing today to obey Gods' Truth, to be one who is saved and do all those things that God has said that He might add you to the church, that in the end you might receive the eternal reward and live every day according to that end?

(SONG # 3 - "Love Lifted Me!")


May I again take this opportunity to thank you for joining us today. I hope our time together has been an uplifting and an encouragement to all. Please remember that you are invited back to join us every first day of the week, at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this time of Worship before God!

But for now, let me ask if you have any questions or comments about today's lesson? Maybe, you would like a free transcript or a cassette tape of this program? Possibly, we could assist you with free Bible materials or correspondence courses? No matter what your need is, please contact us at the following address:

The Living Word 2540 N. Kansas Expressway Springfield, Mo. 65803

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Or if you prefer, you may call us at: (417)869-2284

Have you obeyed the truth found in God's Word pertaining to Salvation? I pray that you have for there is no other place or source where we can go to know the Word's of Eternal life!

(Program closing)