The Good News About Righteousness

6/26/2016

Sermon by Rev. Julius A. Harper, Santa Clarita Christian Fellowship Church

The Good News About Righteousness

(You Can Be Right With God)

Romans 3:21-26

Romans 3:21-26 (NKJV)
21  But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,
22  even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference;
23  for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
24  being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
25  whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed,
26  to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

May the Lord add a blessing to the reading and the hearing of HIS holy word.

Back in the first week of June, when we were last together in our study through the epistle to the church at ROME, I delivered a sermon entitled God’s Irrefutable Evidence. In that sermon the writer outlined and summarized God’s case against all man kind, as humanity was exposed and laid bare in the truth of God’s declaration that there is NONE righteous no not one.

Paul in chapter one verse 18, began his case opening the subject of God’s wrath and the revelation of it, as being revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men.

Paul indicts the unsaved world, noting their rejection of the proof of God and their rebellion against him. He also addresses the moralist; the human being who in his or her own opinion isn’t’ as bad as the wine-bibbler or skirt chaser down the street, yet in reality the moralist is no better, for what one may have not done recently or at all, has in-fact been operational in the mind and heart and if restraints and or other mechanisms were not in place, the moralist, the good person would engage in the exact same sinful activities or worse. Then Paul turns his examination on those who are religious and he chides and corrects those who have the law as law breakers themselves, who have the advantage of knowing the will of God, yet regularly and hypocritically lie, steal and murder with their mouths. No one has an advantage, circumcision won’t save you, religion which is of an outward nature and that not of a circumcised heart cannot justify a person or make a person right with God, they are all gone out of the way there is none that does good NO NOT ONE.

Paul brought the hammer down BIG TIME on everyone and he smites the pride of all bringing humanity to the unflinching door of truth but then we find ourselves at the “BUT NOW Of God.

You see that in the scripture …you read that in the “a” portion verse 21

There is no one who is righteous, everyone fall shorts….BUT NOW, the righteous of God apart from the law is revealed.

We cannot work our way, we cannot obtain a position of righteousness by the deeds of the law, but NOW God is showing us another way.

This today is a GOOD NEWS SERMON, this is a sermon that focuses NOT on the sinful rock and a hard place situation of man, but rather it is one in which God is announcing the good news about righteous in that man who is incapable can be made right with God.

That is the sermon today entitled “ The Good News About Righteousness” and I’ve subtitled it ‘YOU TOO CAN BE MADE RIGHT WITH GOD”

FIVE points I want to share with you regarding the good new about Righteous, noted firstly that…..

The Good News About Righteousness is…..

  1. God has revealed how man can get right with him.

 

Romans 3:21 (NKJV)
21  But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,

Romans 3:21 (NLT)
21  But now God has shown us a way to be made right with him without keeping the requirements of the law, as was promised in the writings of Moses and the prophets long ago.

Genesis 15:6 (NLT)
6  And Abram believed the LORD, and the LORD counted him as righteous because of his faith.

Genesis 15:6 (NKJV)
6  And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.

Philippians 3:8-9 (NKJV)
8  Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ
9  and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith;

Now for those of you who were here for the last 3 or four sermons from this series, the context for you is crystal clear.

Nothing that we could do, none of our effort could make us right with God, we fail in our best efforts, our righteous is like a filthy rag, when we try to do right sin is always present with us, our words capture us as hypocrites, our hearts deceive us, the very thoughts of our mind are broken and perverted and twisted; we are steeped in pride and arrogance, our hopelessness is without question, but NOW GOD has revealed to us that it is possible, in-spite of the “impossibility” we face, for sinful man, to be declared and made right with God, through another means that is different than anything man can do on his own.

This is the thought that you want to have clear in your mind as you consider this first point and the good news that is being announced to you.

What the law could not do, what the FLESH could not do, what religion, what discipline, could not do God secures for us, through faith in Jesus Christ.

This is a revelation that has been pointed to in History, this is what was meant here in the passage when it refers to the writings and the promises.

In Genesis chapter 15:6, we read about Abram. Abram wasn’t a perfect man, but he believed the Lord and the Lord, counted it; that is HIS FAITH. God treated him as a righteous person, God accepted him as a righteous person, God deposited righteousness into the bank account of Abram, because Abram believed God.

In other words, Abraham who could not put anything in his own account got a deposit made in his account by God, not because Abram earned the deposit, but because God did it, God imputed it to Abram righteousness a part from works.

This is good news for all of us, because today the way that we are made right with God, the way we are declared justified is through faith in the completed work of Jesus Christ on the cross on Calvary.

This is good news for all of us today and a positive reminder to Christians too, when you struggle and miss the mark, again, that God has credited to you a level of acceptance, that is based upon your faith and trust in the risen savior who paid the price for your sins, who took upon himself our sins, so that we might be made right with God, because of what Jesus Christ did.

That’s the good news, that’s the stuff that ought to get an AMEN and praise God, that is wonderful that God himself reveals to those who cannot do it on their own, that there is a way, that he has made, through which we can become right with God.

The Good News About Righteousness is…..

  1. God has provided access to righteousness for everyone who believes.

Romans 3:22-23 (NKJV)

22  even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference;

23  for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

Romans 10:12-13 (ASV)
12  For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek: for the same Lord is Lord of all, and is rich unto all that call upon him:
13  for, Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Romans 10:12-13 (MSG)
12  It’s exactly the same no matter what a person’s religious background may be: the same God for all of us, acting the same incredibly generous way to everyone who calls out for help.
13  “Everyone who calls, ‘Help, God!’ gets help.”

In this second point I want to dwell on and drill down into this concept of “ALL”

All men, all women, all boys, all girls have fallen short of the glory of God. This is a continuing fact and an on-going problem and reality. Paul has laid out the truth of this in no uncertain terms for sure.

All of us miss God’s moral standard.

All of us, fall short of his purity and truth.

All of us fail in our words and deeds.

All means everyone.

That means that access is available if you are Greek or a Gentile, or a Muslim, or if you are rich or poor, or black or white, or red or brown, no matter who you are, God’s word says….ALL, because all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.

From the beginning of man’s earliest days, the history of man is dotted with sinful rebellion, starting in the garden with Adam and continuing to this very day, continuing to your thoughts and attitudes even this morning, here in the sanctuary.

Everyone stands convicted, but God has provided a solution to the problem, he has provided access to everyone who has the problem.

God does not discriminate NO he has provided access to a right standing with him, to everyone…watch this, because EVERYONE IS CAPABLE OF BELIEVING.

Now for me personally this is very assuring when it comes to the life of my daughter for example. Her verbal capabilities are severely limited, she cannot express herself, she can’t come up here and do a praise dance, but she is fully capable of BELIEVING and she does believe.

God in his great mercy and kindness, knowing that every person is in the same boat and in the same need, provides the same life-line for everyone

For ALL.

The message translation which I harvested for you and we read together a moment ago, really communicates this best in when it said “the same God for all of us, acting the same incredibly generous way to everyone who calls out for help.
13  “Everyone who calls, ‘Help, God!’ gets help.”

That means, no matter what your life may be like right now and or what kind of sinfulness defines your life today, that GOD in his loving kindness is ready to reach out and save YOU from your sins and to make you right with him, if you are willing to REPENT and to call upon his name and to believe in HIS HOLY SON Jesus Christ the Lord.

Thought:

Now understand something so you don’t miss, the lifeline to salvation through faith in Jesus Christ is to SAVE you from your sins in this world and the next; IT IS NOT a get out of hell pass, that you get pick up and put into your pocket today, for use after you die, so that today you may continue on in sin and go on about your merry way, living a sinful life in this world, with the idea that you can live in sin and then go to heaven free as a bird.

That needs to be clear because there is some strange teaching going on out there and folks are eating it up, because they want to be saved from eternal damnation, but to hold on to sinful rebellion and sinfulness in this world, and NO that is not what Christ offers.

When you cry for help, he answers to save from the sinful bondage of this world and he comes to change everything that binds you in this world too. He comes to deliver you from sin and to save to your soul.

The Good News About Righteousness is…..thirdly is that

 

  1. God has provided righteousness as a free gift, through his grace.

 

Romans 3:24 (NKJV)

24  being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

Ephesians 1:7 (NLT)
7  He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.

Ephesians 2:8 (NLT)
8  God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.

Ephesians 2:8 (MSG)
8  Saving is all his idea, and all his work. All we do is trust him enough to let him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish!

For this 3rd point, the thought I want to concentrate on surrounds the word REDEMPTION…..say that word.

Here in Romans 3:24, the writer speaks of the gift of God, that is justification, or being made right by Christ Jesus having obtained our FREEDOM as a gift to us.

Now again I want you to consider this within the context of the damaging case that was laid out by Paul as it regards the guilt and culpability of man before a HOLY GOD and the reality of the wages of sin and HELL fire that mankind has earned.

Abraham believed God and God counted that faith as righteousness; it was the faith of Abraham that gave him that right standing with God apart from works of the law

The Good news today is that God has provided and made possible a righteousness for us that we could not obtain on our own, because Christ Jesus, secured it for us, by arranging to get us out of the sinful quagmire that we were in, as a result of our helpless and lost condition.

In order to make us JUST before God, in order to secure a righteous standing for those who could not obtain it on their own, someone, had to intervene in the affairs of man, to deliver or to redeem man from the slave market of sin and death and hell to which he was bound.

The word redemption is used in three different ways in the new testament and you can read more about this if you do a deeper study in Ephesians 1:7.

Three ways this word redemption is used.

First the word is used to describe the process of setting a slave free; this would be the case when a person was held in slavery, but someone came along and paid the price to set that slave free, the person would be redeemed, or delivered because of a price that was paid.

The word redeemed is also used to describe the action of getting a person out of some sort of fix. It means to deliver in such a way that the person is totally freed “ never to return to the position of being held or bound any longer

Then the word redeem simply speaks of the action of paying a price, or buying

Thought:

Some of you remember the concept of “ LAY-A-WAY”

You’d go in and pay for something and the then redeem or take delivery of that, as a result of what you paid.

This is the good news that I’m here to share with you my friends. This is what almighty God, the God we so offended and disrespected did for us, through the precious blood of his only Son Jesu

I Love how the New Living Translation breaks out Ephesians 1:7 and I quote
7  He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.

God did it on his own, it was his idea, it was his doing, we cannot take credit for it, it is HIS gift from start to finish, he bought us back from the enslavement and bondage of sin, taking us from a position of guilt and separation and instead reconciling us to himself, through the blood of his precious SON. “.

All we do is to repent of our reliance upon and worship sin and of self and instead surrender to him as Lord and trust him enough to let him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish!

The free Gift of God is a mind-blowing blessing without a doubt.

Let this sink in a really take hold of your heart my friends.

Free through his unmerited favor.

Free to those who rebelled against him.

Free for us, but not free for God.

For though it cost us NOTHING it cost Jesus HIS precious blood and his life, poured out on a cross along side of criminals.

The redemption, the price of you having access to justification, through faith in Jesus Christ, was the life of God’s only begotten Son.

Don’t’ ever become so foolish and sinful and selfish as to look at the gift and just skip away, happy, la-de-da.

That gift cost the life of God’s only begotten SON, who suffered, bled and died on a tree to redeem you.

The good news is that it is a FREE gift, but if you have to accept and embrace it, by asking Jesus Christ into your life and placing your faith and life and trust in him.

The Good News About Righteousness is…..

  1. God has provided righteousness for man, through the blood of Christ that propitiated God’s wrath.

 

Romans 3:25a (NKJV)

25  whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed,

Leviticus 16:10 (NLT)
10  The other goat, the scapegoat chosen by lot to be sent away, will be kept alive, standing before the LORD. When it is sent away to Azazel in the wilderness, the people will be purified and made right with the LORD.

Luke 18:13 (YLT)
13  And the tax-gatherer, having stood afar off, would not even the eyes lift up to the heaven, but was smiting on his breast, saying, God be propitious to me–the sinner!

1 John 4:10 (NLT)
10  This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.

This 4th point seems similar to the third point, but we want to break it out separately, so that we can more fully appreciate the gift of God by understanding more fully the concept and reality of propitiation.

If you go back into the archives of the sermons on you-tube and listen to the first sermon I delivered on the topic of the wrath of God, you’ll find some bits of information that will be helpful in adding context to this 4th point.

Thought:

You may surprised to know this but there are people in the world today, who do not believe in the wrath of God.

You may be one of those who share that mindset; when I delivered the sermon on the wrath of God, there was push back from folks who posted to that effect, saying that they could not accept nor believe in a God of wrath.

Now you can believe whatever you want, but my bible tells me, that the God is loving and kind and long suffering and that he is a God of justice and a God of wrath too.

Man has earned the wrath of God, as a result of our rebellion and rejection of God and our suppression of God’s truth.

Man has earned the wrath of God, but here is a BIG secret that may blow your mind.

God HELD BACK HIS wrath. We earned it, but God held it back.

He held his wrath back and he released that held back wrath not on man, but on his SON.

When Jesus went to the cross, I believe that the wrath he suffered on the cross was a result of what God had been holding back, in his patience.

That is what we are talking about when the scripture speaks of the forbearance of God; he remained stoic, he held back the full expression of his wrath as a demonstration of his goodness; God held the outpouring of his wrath back, until the time that he had purposed to send Christ Jesus to be the absorber of the wrath that was stored up.

Don’t miss this one and make sure you are clear. The wrath was earned by mankind, but Jesus absorbed it

That is what Jesus is, that is what he was sent forth as, to be the propitiator, the one who absorbed, the one who took away, the one who satisfied and paid for and appeased the wrath of God in his own body.

The good news is that God has provided a mechanism through which the wrath that was clearly earned by man, could be absorbed by another.

So thinking back to the description of the scapegoat that we read about from Leviticus, this is what you should see and understand as Christ being pictured therein.

The people would place their hands on the head of the scapegoat and transfer their guilt on to the goat and send that goat away, so that the people would be purified and made RIGHT with the Lord.

This is what God did for man, he made Jesus the scapegoat, by putting the penalty not only for sin, but the wrath of Almighty God on his Son.

And in that doing, the books were balanced, unrighteousness was dealt with; the wraith of God was appeased, absorbed and satisfied.

Fifth and Finally The Good News About Righteousness is…..

  1. God’s declaration of the unjust as just, demonstrates HIS glorious righteousness.

 

Romans 3:25c-26 (NKJV)

25c because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed,
26  to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

The fact that God passed over the sins of man, that he forgives, yet he balanced the needs of justice by sending Christ to suffer so that he would be consistent with justness, this incredible act, declares and demonstrates his perfect goodness and his incredible grace in making something happen that speaks of HIS great MERCY and KINDNESS.

God’s kindness makes him look even more incredible, considering the reality of man’s sinfulness and rebellion and guilt before HIM.

Only God could satisfy the demands of JUSTICE while at the same time, making you and I free.

God did this, as part of his incredible plan that was laid out before the foundation of the world.

God did this so that in the ages to come, he might show the exceeding riches of his kindness.

When he saves you and I as filthy, worthless sinners who are worthy of damnation and instead places us in heaven, seated with him in heavenly places, I have no doubt in my mind that heaven declares, what a mighty God we serve.

My friend, God is still in the business of getting glory out of declaring sinful men and women, boys and girls as righteous, not by works but by FAITH in the redemptive death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Through time God as been holding back the full force of his wrath, since the ancient days, God’s forbearance and patience and long suffering has been applied to man’s sin.

And this by the way is the reason UNSAVED SINNER WHO IS HERE TODAY IS WHY you’ve been allowed to continue on in the filthiness of your rebellion.

As an unsaved and unrepentant rebel, you might have thought that you’d just gotten away with rebelling against God all of these years, because God was some kind of chump, but the fact of the matter is, that he’s withheld his punishment from you, because each day that you are allowed to live and walk on God’s green earth while you rebel and sin against him is nothing more than a demonstration of his mercy.

Oh but my friend, I am here to tell you in no uncertain terms that time is not on your side, for God will not always strive with man, he will not continue to keep the door open for your forever, but one day, the clock will strike midnight.

My friend make no mistake about it, midnight is coming 100% for sure.

Midnight may be for you, the day you breathe your last breath and in fact that could be tonight, for tomorrow is promised to no one.

Midnight may be the bullet that pierces your chest when some random shooter burst into the mall where you just happen to be.

Midnight may be the aneurism that burst in your head, even though you’ve felt great and never had a health problem in your life.

Midnight may be the clock that is set of the natural cause for death, which can come at any age…

Or it may be that midnight for you comes at the end of the age, when Jesus Christ returns on the clouds of heaven and he splits the sky and he brings this current earth age to a close and you find that time has run out.

And my friend if you find yourself on the wrong side of time, having died in your sins, without Christ Jesus as Lord of your life, all of the provisions and all of the grace and all of the love and patience of God, will mean absolutely nothing to you, for if YOU pass up the free gift of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ alone and instead pursue your own agenda and die in your sins, you are without a doubt lost eternally with no hope of help, subject to eternal damnation in a devils’ hell.

The good news is that YOU can be made righteous with God and obtain the righteousness, that God has made available to ALL people, if you repent of your sinful independence and give your heart and faith to Jesus Christ as Lord.

While all eyes are closed and heads are bowed…

 

 

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A Few Good Men

 

6/19/16 Father’s Day Sermon, By Rev. Julius A. Harper

A Few Good Men

Ezekiel 22:30-31 (NKJV)
30  So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one.
31  Therefore I have poured out My indignation on them; I have consumed them with the fire of My wrath; and I have recompensed their deeds on their own heads,” says the Lord GOD.

May the Lord add a blessing to the reading and the hearing of HIS holy word.

On this wonderful Fathers day we are taking a detour from our studies through the epistle to the Roman church, to present a topical sermon entitled A FEW GOOD MEN.

I know that the topic isn’t an original one, in fact it was the title of a movie starring Tom Cruise, one of my favorites actually; if you remember the movie, there was the incredible scene in which Jack Nicolson is getting grilled by Tom Cruise and he tells Cruise, YOU CAN’T handle the truth.

The sermon isn’t about that by the way, but I was just curious if there were some of you in the room here, that also liked the movie.

The title of the sermon actually came from an idea on sermon central and the main scripture was given in the header, which resonated with me immediately and then the Lord began to show me how to address this subject with you the listener.

Ladies YES this is Father’s day but I don’t’ want you to tune out, but I want you to TUNE in and take copious notes along with your husbands, fathers, uncles Sons and brothers.

And let me tell you why.

You see on this Father’s day, I want to both encourage and challenge MEN, about the opportunities and dangers that face our world today and the role that we have as Fathers and men, in terms of dealing with the realities of this world and the difference we can make in it.

Men, understand something clearly, we can make a difference.

Here in the passage we just read from together, the context would be better understood if we did a broader reading of the verses that lead up to the two we’ve selected today, but for time sake let me just summarize.

Here the prophet Ezekiel starting from verse 23, writes of how the word of the Lord came to him as a complaint against the land of Israel and the people of God.

God in his complaint decries the corruption of society and the woeful condition of the people, noting that everyone from the prophets to the priest to the common folks, were dripping with sinful disobedience and corruption.

The laws of God were being ignored, his Sabbath days were distained; there was violence in the land as well as bloodshed and lying.

False prophets deceived the people and lied to them, often declaring “thus said the Lord” when the Lord had never spoken to them, justice was perverted and the fabric of the nation was coming apart at the seams; God looking down upon this incredible sight, being a God of justice, was moved not with compassion, but vengeful wrath.

 

Then we come to the words of verse 30, which we read together just a moment ago, and here the thought again, now that you understand the context….

Having seen all of this and now being poised to judge them, God declares

30  So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one.
31  Therefore I have poured out My indignation on them; I have consumed them with the fire of My wrath; and I have recompensed their deeds on their own heads,” says the Lord GOD.

When I read this passage and the context associated with it, I was immediately moved by the weightiness of this subject.

In our world today, in your world and the world of your children we see a society that is coming a part at the seams, just as the nation of Israel was at the time of this writing.

In a previous sermon I shared from our study through the epistle of Romans, we talked a bit about the wrath of God and the evidence of God’s wrath that is seen in the various malignancies and problems that affect our world.

We live in a world of incredible corruption; young people especially find this reality to be discouraging and they are quickly loosing faith and trust in our leaders.

God’s name is being blasphemed and false teaching has swept the land, people are deceived, justice is perverted and human life has become devalued.

Things are terrible for sure, but I here to challenge the men and to assure the women and mothers and daughters that husbands and fathers and Sons can make a difference; for just as the Lord was seeking after a man, when he spoke through the prophet Ezekiel, so also is he looking for a few good men today.

That is the subject that is the topic, that is the approach we are going to take today and the scripture we read from will yield several powerful points that will both encourage you and challenge men and Sons and brother and Fathers today.

So if you can embrace that SAY AMEN.

God is looking for a few good men to……

  1. To build a hedge of protection (Make a wall)

Ezekiel 22:30a (NKJV)
30  So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall..

Ezekiel 22:30a (NLT)
30  “I looked for someone who might rebuild the wall of righteousness.

(SCREEN)

Jeremiah 5:1a-c (NKJV) 

1  “Run to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem; See now and know; And seek in her open places If you can find a man, If there is anyone who executes judgment, Who seeks the truth,

For this first point, I’d like you to consider the idea of the wall, as being the boundaries and guidelines that God places around us for our protection and the righteous laws and ways of God as being the bricks that make up the wall.

I’d also like you to think of these walls, as elements of protection that are needed for our wives, our children and our society.

I mentioned earlier in the opening that the writing of the prophet addresses a time of lawlessness and chaos in Israel and the writer decries the fact that all elements of restraint had been cased off by the people; the walls had been broken down and the people were going astray.

This is what we are seeing in our society today ladies and gentleman, the walls of righteousness have been destroyed; those who stand for righteousness and the Lords way are far and few.

And within the context of this sinful reality, God looks down from heaven, for a man or for someone who might rebuild and or restore or restrain the people from engaging in sin and thus bring them back to a place of protection and alignment with God

Jeremiah chapter five spoke of a running to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem and the seeking if you please of God, for a MAN who would stand for truth and justice.

Notice that he didn’t say that he was looking for a women, notice that he didn’t say he was looking for child, but rather God says he’s looking for a man; in other words, being the protector and the boundary setter is a man’s job.

This I believe my friends is the call of God upon each and every Father, Son, Uncle, Brother, Nephew and man here today.

This is what God is looking for, he is looking for a few good men, who are prepared to partner with God in putting into place, those elements of protection and wisdom that are according to God’s will, which when applied and committed to will form an impenetrable barrier of protection around the lives of our wives and children and families and communities.

God is looking for a few good men, who understand the seriousness of the times we live in and the threat that a lack of leadership and commitment brings not only to the generations that are alive today, but for our grand-children and the world they will be born into.

What I am talking about in a practical sense is a call from God, a battle call if you please in which God is recruiting us, to restore the breach that has been created by reason of our neglect of his word and the failure of men today, to commit themselves to righteousness, so that they might lead and guide and protect those whom the Lord has given into our hands as men who are to lead and to take the forefront in doing what is required to protect, guide nurture and train up.

Husbands, men, fathers Son’s and brothers on this wonderful fathers day, I want to remind you and to encourage you to embrace the unique call of God upon your lives, to be the ones who seek the truth of God, who will recognize the danger of the world we live in and commit ourselves not just to building a business, or a career or wealth, where robbers can break in and thieves destroy, but rather to answer God as one who would say, I’m ready to be a wall builder, I’m ready to lay the foundation of my life and the foundation of the lives of my family, on Christ the solid rock and to put into place those elements, that not only keep us within the bounds of justice and righteousness as outlined in your word, BUT I’m ready to accept the call staring first and foremost with a personal commitment to Christ.

Now I am sure that you knew I would go there, but you may have thought that perhaps I’d wait until the end, but the fact of the matter is that, YOU as a man and as the head of the family that God has given you, cannot lead from behind.

You can’t set boundaries that you yourself don’t respect. You can’t build a solid foundation for your family, until and unless you yourself have made a personal commitment to Christ the solid rock. If they are at church on Sunday and you are at home, you won’t be very successful in positioning yourself as the wall builder and protector that God calls you to be.

God is looking for a few good men to……

  1. To Stand

Ezekiel 22:30b (NKJV)
30  So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand

(SCREEN)

Isaiah 6:8 (ASV)
8  And I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then I said, Here am I; send me.

Now for this second point, I want you to bear with me for a moment, because I understand that I’m drilling down really deeply into the words here and in doing so I am bring up a thought that may not fit the context of the scripture and how the word is actually being used.

I’ve broken out the word STAND because I want to communicate a certain thought, rather than hold to a strict exegesis of the passage.

What I want you to embrace here is the visual of a man standing and consider the idea of God looking for a man to STAND and to take a position of spiritual responsibility.

Isaiah 6:8, helps me greatly in this second point, so I harvested it for you to consider.

In chapter 6, the details outline the vision of the prophet Isaiah and his call to the prophetic ministry. There the details are given of him witnessing the spender of heaven and the Lord seated upon the throne.

Isaiah is overcome by the holiness of God and the reality, that he was being called as a messenger and his unworthiness of the call, in fact he is so overcome that he believes he will die, because he is not pure and has seen the king.

One of the heavenly creature, uses a pair of tongs to take a hot coal from the fire of heaven’s altar and takes away Isaiah’s guilt; then he heard the voice of the Lord say, whom can I send and who will go for us, to which Isaiah replies, here I am send me.

Thought:

When Isaiah embraced the call of God upon his life, what he essentially did was to STAND and say YES.

This I believe my friends is a right now call, that applies to God’s will concerning every person today, especially MEN.

God is looking for a few good man, who are willing to STAND and say LORD here I am, send me.

Husbands, fathers, Sons and brothers on this Father’s day I want to remind you how God has wired you and where he places you Spiritual and relationally, with regard to your wives and families and children and that his positioning of you uniquely qualifies you to be used of God in a way that only a man can be used.

Now understand something and don’t tune this out because folks are quick to get on the defensive.

I am not putting down nor casting dispersions upon the gifts and callings and anointing that God places upon the Sisters and Mothers and daughters, that is not what you should hear, but what you should hear and must understand is that the call for men to STAND and SAY YES and to be willing is a desperate call for sure.

The biggest challenge we have today for men in this society is the brokenness of sin, that has resulted in today’s ultra-laid back “male”, who will not stand, but rather remains passive in the back ground or one the sidelines just far enough away to watch, but never close enough to take leadership and or responsibility.

Thought:

Men today often excel not in standing but rather in excuses.

Men today often excel not in standing but in being pre-occupied with foolish things while women and children take the lead, usurping by our refusal to stand up, the role of honor and servant hood that God has called us to.

God is looking for a few good men who will stand up in the church and say, here I am send me.

My friends this may seem to be a challenging word, but I want you to embrace it and to reject the lie that God is looking for perfection.

No no, my Son, No no, my brother, no no, man of God, do not allow that fact that we struggle with imperfection to keep you cowed and scared and intimidated, but rather embrace the redemptive work of Jesus Christ and what he did on the cross at Calvary, as having the power to cleanse and make you right before God.

Understand the truth that God is able to make you stand in him, not because you earned it, but because he’s already secured your right standing because of the shed blood of Jesus Christ on Calvary.

Understand that Jesus knows your every weakness, but he is able to make you the person he wants you to be, when you humble yourself and submit to his leadership and authority in your life.

And that when you do that, he will come along side you, even in your weakness, when you fall down before him and declare, Lord here I am send me.

This my friends is the power of God to take a man and to transform him and it comes through the portal of humility and obedience.

Even though you may not be qualified in the flesh, you can ask God to use you for his will. You can call out to the master on behalf of your family and ask God to send you.

You can say, God here I am….

Send me, to speak your word.

Send me to teach, your word.

Send me to pray for someone

Send me to love a hurting person with the same love of God you show me and give to me day after day after day in my personal walk and relationship with you.

God is looking for a few good men to..

  1. To Represent (___________)

Ezekiel 22:30c (NKJV)
30  So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land

(SCREENS)

Exodus 32:9-11a (ASV) 

9  And Jehovah said unto Moses, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people:
10  now therefore let me alone, that my wrath may wax hot against them, and that I may consume them: and I will make of thee a great nation.
11  And Moses besought Jehovah his God

 Psalm 106:23 (NLT)
23  So he declared he would destroy them. But Moses, his chosen one, stepped between the LORD and the people. He begged him to turn from his anger and not destroy them.

In this third point I included a BLANK spot for you to fill in. You could change that to be your family, your wife, your children, your church or the nation.

The third point and the call of God that we are addressing is the call to the role of intercessor.

God is looking for a few good men, God is looking for you personally my brother, God is looking for some MEN who are willing to stand in the gap on behalf of your wives and your children and your families, but in order to be able to flow in that effectively, you’ve got to have some kind of relationship with God that goes well beyond the kind of Sunday-go-to meeting, get to you when I have time, or not when I am at work or doing something else type of relationship.

There from Exodus chapter 32, we read just a snippet of an interaction between God and Moses.

Moses in this instance would represent the intercessor, the father figure, the male leader if you please, the person who was willing to go to God and to speak on behalf of the people.

You remember the context of course and if you don’t let me refresh your memory. Moses had been away from the people up on the mountain of God for a long while and while he was there, the people or you could say the children, starting acting up, they started sinning against God and began worshipping the golden calf.

God seeing this became incensed, and understandably so; God who had brought the people out of Egypt with a powerful hand, now sees folks dancing and cavorting in front of this worthless piece of metal and he decides to just wipe them off the face of the earth.

Moses seeing what is about to go down, actually steps in between the Lord and the people, as the intercessor, he is standing in the gap, representing the people and speaking for those who cannot or will not speak for themselves.

This is what God is calling us to do today as men, he is seeking for men to do what Moses did.

Men who will recognize the need for prayer warriors who have a relationship with God almighty, men who can seek God in prayer, men who can call upon the name of the Lord, men who can present themselves to God and plead the cause and the needs of our country our nation and our land

Men, God is looking for you, he is looking for a few good men.

Thought:

Men we need to take hold of prayer and the power of intercession. If Moses had not stepped forward and prayed to God, who knows what would have happened that day.

If Moses had not drawn upon the wellspring of his prayer life and his relationship with God, or even worse if he had none; who knows what would have happened to the children of Israel.

If Moses was not prepared to STAND IN THE GAP and REPRESENT at the time the people needed him, all could have been lost.

And such is the same challenge for us today and that is why God is looking for a few good men to embrace the call to represent our families, our children, our nation and the church of God.

Men we need to embrace with all due diligence the importance of having a strong relationship with God and a prayer life that enables us to Spiritually represent and stand in the gap for those who so desperately need us.

God is looking for a few good men to……

  1. To recognize the reality of judgment and the consequences of sin.

Ezekiel 22:30d (NKJV)
30  So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it;

(SCREEN)

“Gills Commentary/Exposition” Ezekiel 30:22

And I sought for a man among them, a good man “that would endeavor by his influence to stop the breaking in of sin and the consequences of it, one that would “ stand in the gap that sin had made” at which the Lord was entering in as a man of war to destroy the transgressors”

In other words, God is looking for a man and I’ll add a few good men, who understand that something has got to be done, in order to stem the tide of judgment that is coming upon our families and our society and our children, unless we use our Godly influence to stop it from happening.

Brothers, Fathers, Sons; the standard bearer for righteousness and the leading figure in the home, that protects and actually becomes the watcher on the wall, should be you not your wife or your mother or your auntie

The wall makers, the wall watchers and the ones who are on the look out and who understand the dangers of letting sin in, should be the MEN.

That is why in this 4th point, I used the term RECOGNIZE…say that world REGOGNIZE.

This is what we need to do today, as leaders, as husbands, as fathers and Sons, we need to recognize, that unless we begin to exert Godly leadership in our families that destruction and judgment is coming and will come down from God.

That means men, that we must re-establish the boundaries, we’ve got be the ones who are the standard bearers for holiness and righteousness.

No longer can we abdicate the position of influence that comes with being the Spiritual leaders of our homes, for when we do it opens our wives and children and our society to the painful consequences of sin.

At the end of the day, it all comes back to the fathers.

Fathers have to say NO, fathers have to understand the dangers and recognize and be the watchers on the wall, understanding fully that there are consequences to allowing our wives and families to be independent of us.

Push back and complain yes they may, as flesh will do, but you Oh man of God, keep your eyes open, be serious about the danger of judgment and the consequences of sin. They may not recognize WHY you often have to be the hand of restraint, they may not appreciate that it is out of LOVE and a desire to protect, that you draw the line, or you limit what enters into the gates of your castle, but it is needful because you understand that sin and rebellion and lawlessness has cost and a price to be paid.

The kids may want to go there or to engage in this or that. Your teen age daughter may think that it’s just cute, but you know it’s too tight.

Mama may want to be independent, but you understand that God hates rebellion and you understand the dangers of men and the wickedness of the world, as only a man can see, so you must endeavor by the influence of your God submitted life to stop the breaking in of sin upon your family and the consequences of it.

God is looking for a few good men to……5th and finally

  1. To have the courage to be “the one”

Ezekiel 22:30e (NKJV)
30  So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one.

In verse 31 which we read together in the opening of the sermon, the sobering words of the writer were essentially this…

I looked for someone, I looked for a man, but there was none, so I had no choice, I had no alternative, the law of sowing and reaping came down on them as a natural consequence wherein their own deeds and their own sins came down upon their heads.

I looked, I sought, I desired someone, but because I found no one, the people instead were consumed.

Brother, father, husband, son, it takes courage to be THE ONE.

Folks are not going to love you for it, they won’t nominate you as Dad of the year for it, you won’t be popular for it, but they need you to be THE ONE.

They need a man that is willing to live this bible.

They need a MAN who is willing to stand against the forces of compromise and tolerance.

They need a MAN who says I will not step back.

I will not shut down and throw my hands up and quit.

But instead I will embrace the call of God to be the one.

The one to says NO, we can’t allow that into our house.

Or yes we are going to do it that way, because that lines up with the word of God

Or NO we cannot compromise God’s word, it doesn’t matter what anyone says, our house is following God.

No is a thought word, but the ONE has got to be able to embrace it.

NO, you can’t do that because that THING is going to create a breach in the wall of righteousness and protection that we’ve determine to live and operate within as a statement of our faith in the word of God the boundaries that are there for our good.

Father you’ve got to stand and be the one.

You’ve got to personally say to YOURSELF “ I’ve got to stand my ground because if I don’t protect my children and my family and remain vigilant and committed there will be dire consequences.

If we don’t answer the call, the result will be wrath and destruction upon our families, our children and society.

Be the ONE, Be the one, BE THE ONE that God finds that he can count on, even if it’s only YOU.

AMEN….Give God some praise in his house.

CLOSE:

Today in the sermon we shared which was designed to speak to the MEN on this father’s day, I want to commend and point you to the best man of all time, who’s name is JESUS Christ, Son of the living God.

When man sinned and fell into rebellion through that one man ADAM, every man, every woman, every boy and girl fell into death and destruction, by one man sin entered into the world and through sin came death.

Because of Adam’s sin each of us today are born into the world with a SIN problem that separates us from God and condemns us to a devil hell.

But God in his great love, desired not that all of mankind be lost, but rather he desired that men be saved.

John 3:16 records these words and listen to them in context “ For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whoever believes in him should not perish but have ever lasting life”

Just as through one man, came death and sin, so through one man, the only truly good and perfect man, Jesus Christ came life and peace and hope.

God chose the only truly good man to who ever walked the earth, Jesus Christ God’s son and he took that good man and he placed him on the cross and he put the sins of the world, our sins and yours sins on that good man Jesus and he crucified the LORD in our place, so that through that good man, you and I might be saved.

Today if you are under the sound of my voice and you don’t know the reality of having been personally saved by Jesus Christ I want to offer him to you today.

Please feel free to watch the video of the sermon. God bless.

 

God’s Irrefutable Evidence

God’s Irrefutable Evidence

Romans 3:10-20

Romans 3:10-20 (NKJV)
10  As it is written: “There is none righteous, no, not one;
11  There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God.
12  They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.”
13  “Their throat is an open tomb; With their tongues they have practiced deceit”; “The poison of asps is under their lips”;
14  “Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.”
15  “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16  Destruction and misery are in their ways;
17  And the way of peace they have not known.”
18  “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
19  Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
20  Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

May the Lord add a blessing to the reading and the hearing of HIS holy word.

We are continuing our studies through the letter written by the Apostle Paul to the church at Rome.

In three previous sermons Paul lays out the reality of man’s fallenness and unworthiness before a HOLY GOD, indicting the unsaved world, indicting the moralist and religious people too, all of whom fall short of the glory of God and are guilty in his sight.

Paul wants to bring every person to the point of understanding that no matter who you are or where you come from, or what your religious pedigree may be all men are under sin. “ There is none-righteous no not one”

Paul’s words that were directed towards the Jews, were pretty confrontational and spoke powerfully to those who were religious. He said if you are circumcised and you don’t keep the law, you are no better than an uncircumcised person and that was a tough word to embrace because it spoke to us of the reality that true Judaism or true religion isn’t just about rituals, but it is about the heart.

God is not impressed our religious activities, if we approach him on the basis of thinking that church membership or baptism, or giving or doing anything like that, is what makes us acceptable to God, then we have missed it.

No what God is looking at and looking for, is a circumcised heart, that is sensitive to him and submitted to him, serving him YES, but doing so not on the basis of some sort of earning approach, but rather such a heart serves because it is our reasonable service, considering the enormity of the gift of love and grace that God has so freely given us.

Here now in verse ten of chapter three, the letter comes to a high point as Paul quotes the Psalms, noting that there is none righteous no not one.

And this morning we want to drive that point home as a reminder to the saved and a much needed word to the unsaved.

Now this sermon won’t make you feel warm and fuzzy about yourself, but what we will share is necessary and imperative, because without the truth of God’s case against man, without looking at and understanding the irrefutable evidence of sinfulness and the death penalty or wage we earned, we cannot embrace the cross, nor appreciate the wonder of his free gift of salvation to us.

We must never minimize the seriousness of our fallen condition and God’s truth concerning man, God is absolutely right about us which makes his grace so amazing.

If you understand that say AMEN.

Three bodies of evidence we will look at today, noting firstly…..

 

  1. The evidence of man’s sinful nature.

Romans 3:10-12 (NKJV) 

10  As it is written: “There is none righteous, no, not one;
11  There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God.
12  They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.”

Genesis 6:5 (NLT) 

5  The LORD observed the extent of human wickedness on the earth, and he saw that everything they thought or imagined was consistently and totally evil.

Matthew 15:19 (NKJV) 

19  For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies.

Psalm 82:5 (NKJV) 

5  They do not know, nor do they understand; They walk about in darkness; All the foundations of the earth are unstable.

God’s irrefutable evidence against man and our incredible need for salvation and forgiveness are seen firstly in the reality of man’s sinful nature.

You see man likes to think of himself as basically good, but the reality of how we are wired down to our very DNA contradicts that prideful viewpoint completely.

The God who created us and knows everything about us, looks down from heaven upon the children of men and he observes us, noting that he sees no one that is righteous no not one.

He looks at the hearts of man and he observes the extent of human wickedness, noting in Genesis that every thought and every imagination of man is consistently evil and wicked.

Notice if you would please what God actually observes and we see the details in verse 11 in the “a” portion where he says that there is none that understands.

This is a powerful and very instructive word that rings with truth in which God is speaking not in terms of our intellect but rather he is speaking of man’s inability or refusal to discern and or comprehend the truth.

This I believe touches upon what Paul taught us about in chapter one of Romans, where he spoke of how man can look at the truth and see the proof of God and literally suppress what we see, in favor of our lust for and hunger for sinful independence. We seem to have a built in ability to refuse TO UNDERSTAND and to distort the truth.

God is not saying that man isn’t intelligent, but rather he is sighting as part of this over-whelming body of evidence against man, the reality that we can shut down our minds and resist the truth, or refuse to understand God.

Let’s dig deeper into verse 11 the “b” portion and notice the words “ There is none that seeks after God”

This again is incredibly powerful because it speaks of a selfishness and indifference that man has when it comes to the needfulness of being interested in God.

The scripture says there is none that seeks after God” and Oh how true this often is.

Fact of the matter is that man is much more interested in himself, much more passionate in learning about himself and or finding ways in which to pleasure his ego or to satiate his desire for material or comfort.

Folks are not interested in seeking God unless they believe that there is something in it for them.

We find this sickening reality in the church today, even among those who profess the name of Jesus as Lord.

We find pressure on the preacher and or teacher of God’s word, that everything must be couched in terms of human relevance or that which points to a doctrine or practice or concepts that benefit and or lauds man.

God said that he looked down upon all mankind and found, that folks were not interested in seeking the one true God, but instead had become indifferent towards him.

Not only is man indifferent and uninterested in God, but mankind in his sinful rebellion has actually turned away from God, the quote here comes from Psalm 14:3, where it says, “They are all gone out of the way” .

In other words, mankind in his rebelliousness has taken a self directed shift, to another path away from God.

This of course would be the natural occurrence, the natural outflow if you please of a heart and mind that is resistant towards God.

When mankind rejects God and jettisons him out of their minds, then their lives began to reflect the reality of that, when God is rejected folks turn from the light and began to walk in darkness, they become crooked, they take another way and another path leading not to lives of fulfillment but rather leading to lives that become unprofitable.

This is God is laying down the irrefutable evidence.

Thought:

This word unprofitable is a word that means to become USELESS. The word also includes the idea of something become sour, or without worth.

This is the state that man is actually in because we have given ourselves over to the sinful nature.

It may not make us feel good about ourselves to hear this kind of truth, but the fact of the matter is that God is right.

Man Naturally is sinful in his nature, we can be kind sometimes, we can be just sometimes, we can be loving sometimes, but we all end up failing, we all end up being exposed as hypocrites at some point or another in our lives; man always falls short, all too often, for God’s word and the truth about man is irrefutable, there is none righteous, no not one.

Thought:

Now I can lie to myself, I can try and shake off the unflattering truth because it bounces up against my flesh and runs counter to my ego and the distorted image we often have of ourselves; but God who looks not on the outward appearance but rather looks inside at the heart knows the truth as surely as we know it ourselves.

.He is correct, he is right on point that there is none-righteous-no-no-one.

Three bodies of evidence we will look at today, noting secondly…..

  1. The evidence of man’s sinful tongue

Romans 3:13-20 (NKJV)
13  “Their throat is an open tomb; with their tongues they have practiced deceit”; “The poison of asps is under their lips”;
14  “Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.”

 

Romans 3:13 (NLT)
13  “Their talk is foul, like the stench from an open grave. Their tongues are filled with lies.” “Snake venom drips from their lips.”

James 3:8 (NKJV)
8  But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

Psalm 5:9a (NIV)

13 Not a word from their mouths can be trusted. Their heart is filled with malice

The fallen condition of man, our guilt before a holy God and our unworthiness of his grace and mercy is evidenced very strongly in the output of our mouths.

I gave you three confirming scriptures because I wanted to make sure that we were completely clear and we could all absorb these truths together.

The evidence against man is a tongue, which stinks like an open grave, lips that are filled with lies and a mouth that bites like a snake.

Now the language used here is graphic and powerful and highly insulting for sure.

Most of us here, have never smelled the stench of death. We’ve experienced bad breath, we’ve no doubt smelled garbage, but God has experienced the filthiness of our words in a way that he describes as being kin to the odor of a decaying human corpse.

This filth that emanates from the mouth of man is legion and so common in the world today, that like a person who works in a garbage yard, we’ve become desensitized to the stench.

The sinfulness and corruptness of our tongues are seen in the commonness of foul language and cursing that has become not only a part of every-day-language in our world among the unsaved, but it has increasingly become an all too unpleasant odor that emanates from the mouths of church folks.

The evidence that condemns humanity to a devils hell surely earned is seen in the lies and deceit that is a common part of every day dealings and human relationships.

Lying in business is a common practice, lies between family members and friends, speaking in ways that are misleading, telling half truths, spinning the truth in a way that minimizes our responsibilities, little white lies, blue lies and brown lies, speaking with flattery, twisting facts, this is how our mouths are used each day and the truth of this points to and condemns humanity before a holy God.

Notice how it breaks down as we look at the “c” portion of verse Romans 3: 13, where you see the words “ the poison of asps is under their lips”

The asp is a deadly type of cobra. This is not a garden snake; this is not a pet that you can keep in your room with little fear of hurt or harm. If the Cobra bites you, you are likely going to suffer serious consequences and maybe even death.

God’s book of evidence against man, which pictures and confirms that there is none righteous, includes the reality of the piecing and poisonous truth about man and how man uses his tongue.

Thought:

Humanity has a sin problem and it evidences itself through our tongues that talk about people and gossip and attack with deadly venom, inflicting damage to the feelings of others and the reputations of others.

The mouth and the tongue in particular are like a snake that is poised to strike without warning.

When a snake bites you, he normally doesn’t warn you in advance. It just strikes and delivers his deadly poison.

This is true when it comes to human beings. Notice that the writer speaks of something being under the tongue; those words picture or speak to something that is hidden. You can’t see if very easily, but poison is waiting to be injected into another person, because the sinful heart and how man is wired, is geared towards inflicting pain on others.

James spoke of the tongue as untamable and that is completely true. Often words come out and strike at another person, even when you may not want to hurt others.

The scriptures says “whose mouths are full of cursing” but it also speaks of bitterness.

Thought:

Now this may seem strange that bitterness is listed here and in fact you may be surprised at how God’s sees this, but we need to embrace the truth of it.

You see most of know that using foul and or dirty language is wrong; that cursing is wrong and sinful, but we’ve turned a blind eye to sin of unrighteous bitterness.

The world today is full of bitter people and this is especially true among the young people.

Dictionary.com defies bitter as an intense antagonism or hostility and often this bitterness is a seething heart of resentment towards God.

Our tongues and the words we use as well as the thoughts that are harbored in our minds are resentful and cold and cynical.

We are angry at God and often mouth words of resentment against him under our breath, seething on the inside because of a belief that God has disappointed us on some level.

Young people today are angry and bitter and resentful because they believe that the world has let them down and that life hasn’t given them what they feel they deserve.

Employees are bitter about their pay, rather than appreciative of the blessings of employment.

Husbands are bitter towards their wives, in direct opposition to Colossians 3:19

Our mouths betray the darkness and confirm God’s iron clad case against mankind that there is none-righteous-no-not-one.

Our inner thoughts convict us and our tongues point to the reality of man’s sinful fallings.

Three bodies of evidence we are looking at today, noting third and finally…

  1. The evidence of man’s sinful acts

Romans 3:15-18 (NKJV)
15  “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16  Destruction and misery are in their ways;
17  And the way of peace they have not known.”
18  “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

In this third and final evidentiary point we don’t need to access any confirming scriptures for the passage itself stands on it’s own and the evidence against mankind is strong.

Notice if you would please verse 15, where is speaks of the swiftness of men when it comes to the shedding of blood.

The word swift really sets the truth on fire here because it speaks of the desire of man in his actions to readily embrace with great velocity, that which is murderous, hurtful and destructive.

Killing and the desire to kill seems to be on the ready in all aspects of society today. Every single day without fail, there is a shooting or a knifing, or an act of violence through bombs and terror.

Men are on the ready and anxious to shed human blood.

And for those who have never killed another person, there is the lust to embrace killing and violence and bloodshed, vicariously through video games, movies, television and books.

The nature of man is to kill, when we can’t have what we want. The nature of man is to covet and to be jealous of another, so much so that blood is shed over money or possessions.

You can look at any point in history and see the truth of this repeated time and time again.

You can look at civilizations and societies from the day that mankind sinned against God and you’ll see a sick and horrible string of atrocities and crimes of man against man.

This is what the scripture is talking about when the writer uses the words destruction and misery as being in their ways.

Romans 3:17 again is powerfully true and applicable on many levels. The New Living Translation of this verse says “they don’t know where to find peace” this actually speaks to the reality of conflict being part of the nature of fallen man.

Throughout the United States and the world see a planet that is divided into warring factions between ethnic and racial groups.

The country is divided politically folks are angry; political rallies are marked by violence and sometimes death.

Men do not know the ways of peace, they can’t be civil, they cannot think about nor consider anyone or anything beyond their own selfish wants, needs, desires and opinions.

And this has happened because in the world today every man and every woman, every boy and every girl has become a “god” unto themselves.

And when you’ve got a room full of “little gods” who have made their own rules and operate on the basis of what is right according to one’s feelings or what a person wants for themselves, you get violence and war and conflict without a doubt.

This is the world that we are living in today and the evidence is powerful for sure, a world that lacks not only peace nor the ability to find it, but a world, that is Godless and disrespectful and dismissive of God.

Romans 3:18 said “ there is no fear of God before their eyes”;

If Paul were standing in the place of a prosecutor putting man on trial, this would be the lynch pin that locks the gates and throws away the keys.

Having no fear or respect of God, not caring about God’s word, not concerned about the reality of judgment, having blocked the consciousness of it out of their minds, the minds of men and women, boys and girls have become seared as if with a hot iron.

No desire to turn away from their own selfish pursuits, but being fully committed to the pursuit of every form of evil and celebrating those who practice such things

As we read in Romans 1:28 “And even as they did not retain God in their knowledge, God gave them up to a reprobate mind” to an empty giving sinful man full freedom to pursue the filthiness that is in the flesh and our minds.

God lays out the evidence, that none is righteous NO-NOT ONE and he points to the truth concerning us and the evidence of the laws we have broken doing it in an irrefutable way “that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God”

CLOSE:

Paul has made it clear, all men are under sin and Romans 3:23 tells us that the wages of sin is death.

For me and perhaps you too, as you absorb the weight of the truth presented here, I am reminded of just how terrible it would have been, had Paul laid out God’s case and just left us at the door steps of death and hell.

If the prosecutor’s case would have ended with a demand that justice be served upon the guilty, how terrible and damming that would have been.

But I want you to know my friends, that Paul lays out the case, not simply to leave man at the DOOR STEP OF damnation but rather he lays out the case and the reality of our brokenness so that as the Spirit of God brings conviction, you may open your eyes to the wonder of the cross and God’s incredible grace.

We didn’t go there today, but I want you to know that when you read down further into verses 21-26, you are going to get to the BUT NOW OF GOD.

And my friends, those words are beautiful words.

Because they signal a transition from the damaging case for conviction and death; to the glorious reality of what God has done for us through the shed blood of Jesus Christ on Calvary and the righteousness we may obtain, through faith in HIM.

  • Clearly No flesh could be justified in his sight.
  • Clearly every attempt by man has failed.
  • Clearly man is guilty and deserving of eternal separation.

BUT NOW GOD, in his loving kindness, in spite of the IRON CLAD CASE HE HAS against us, did something that still blows my mind to this very day.

Rather than making us bear the burden for our sins by paying the wages of sin with eternal death and suffering, God himself took his only Son Jesus and put the weight of our sins on HIM.

That is what the cross was about my friends and that is why he suffered an ugly and horrible death.

Jesus didn’t go to the cross for what he did. He went to the cross for what we did.

He suffered and died on the cross in our place, for our sins; the Son who never committed a single sin in his life, died and suffered for the un-goldly.

It still blows my mind that God would do that.

It’s amazing grace that MAN who deserves punishment, can be free from the curse of what we earned, NOT BY DYING OUR SELVES, but believing in and accepting into our hearts, the LORD of glory who paid the price to set us free

Romans 3:23 says for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.

Romans 10:9-10 simply puts it like this
9  If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
10  For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.

We’ve earned eternal damnation and cannot save ourselves, BUT GOD has made a way for us to be right with him, as a gift from the very ONE who holds the irrefutable evidence of our guilt.

He did all of the work. He paid the price. Not by works of righteousness, not by giving or being religious, but according to his mercy hath he saved us, by the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Ghost.

His saving grace available to you, all you need to do is to repent of your sinful rebellion believe and receive.