Sermon #1314†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††† Miscellaneous Sermons
††††††††††† Title:†††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ďLET THE GOD OF
†MY SALVATION BE EXALTED!Ē
††††††††††† Text:†††††††††††††††† Psalm 18:46
††††††††††† Reading:†††††††††† Lindsay Campbell - Romans 8:28-39
††††††††††† Subject:††††††††††† Godís Salvation
††††††††††† Date:††††††††††††††† December 12, 1997 - Lancaster, Kentucky
James Lee Rankinís Funeral Sermon
††††††††††† Tape #††††††††††††
††††††††††† My text this morning will be Psalm 18:46. But before I read the text, let me tell you why I have chosen this text and the subject its subject.
††††††††††† Two weeks ago, during one of our visits, James Lee, Norma and I discussed what he wanted us to do today. He specifically requested that no eulogies be given of him. He said, ďThose people who know me know me. Thereís no need for anybody to talk about me.Ē Because I love and respect the dear man whose body is laid before us, I am tempted to deviate from that request; but, for that same reason I shall not do so.
††††††††††† James and Norma both said, ďWe just want the Lord to be honored.Ē Last Sunday night Barry said virtually the same thing. He said, we just want you to lift up Christ and honor our heavenly Father.Ē
††††††††††† James Lee was to this family a faithful, exemplary husband and father. He was to me and to the members of Grace Baptist Church a loyal deacon. He was to us all a beloved friend who will be fondly remembered and greatly missed. I can think of no way to more highly honor him than by honoring his God and Savior. And I can think of no better way to honor the Lord God and his all glorious Christ than talking to you for a few minutes about his great salvation. Therefore I take the words of David in Psalm 18:46 for my text.
††††††††††† This is my desire and my subject. ďLet The God Of My Salvation Be Exalted.Ē
††††††††††† James was in the eyes of all who knew him a very good man. But his goodness extended only to men, not to God. I heard him, on many occasions as he led us to the throne of grace in prayer, acknowledge what all who know God must and do humbly acknowledge, ďLord, our righteousnesses are but filthy rages. Our only hope is Christ, his blood, and his righteousness.Ē He knew himself to be a sinner, nothing but a sinner, but a sinner saved by the free and sovereign grace of almighty God in Jesus Christ, his Substitute.
Proposition: We comfort ourselves with the blessed knowledge that James Lee is today seated with the redeemed in glory, singing, ďWorthy is the Lamb that sitteth upon the throne!Ē not because he was a good man, but because he was saved by the great and good God, even the God of our salvation.
††††††††††† Had he not been saved by Godís free grace in Christ, were it not for Godís election, Christís redemption, and the Holy Spiritís effectual call, had God simply left him to himself, to live and die as he pleased, James would be in hell today. And I am here today to tell you that unless you too find mercy and grace at the throne of grace, you will soon be in hell. Therefore, I ask you attention for just a few minutes, as I endeavor, by the power of God the Holy Spirit, to tell about Godís salvation and the greatness of his glory revealed in it. May God be pleased, as I preach the gospel to you, (You who must soon spend eternity either in the bliss of Christís presence or in the torments of the damned in hell!), may God be pleased today to save you by his grace.
Divisions:†††††† In the first chapter of Ephesians, the inspired Apostle tells us that salvation is the work of the triune God. It is according toÖ
1. The Fatherís Plan.
2. The Sonís Purchase.
3. The Spiritís Power.
I. THE FATHERíS PLAN
††††††††††† We confess with Jonah, ďSalvation is of the Lord!Ē We say with the Psalmist, "Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake" (Psalms 115:1). SALVATION BEGINS WITH GODíS SOVEREIGN PURPOSE OF GRACE IN ELECTION AND PREDESTINATION.
††††††††††† Like all believers, James loved to hear the blessed gospel doctrines of Godís sovereign predestination and eternal electing in Christ preached.
††††††††††† These days, spiritually ignorant men and women talk about their decision for the Lord. But salvation is not accomplished by our decision for Jesus, but according to Godís decision for us from eternity. Salvation is not by your works, but by Godís grace. t is not by your will, but his will.
A. Election is Godís loving choice of and determination to save his people in Christ before the worlds were made.
B. Predestination is Godís sovereign, eternal arrangement of all things which come to pass in time to accomplish the salvation of those whom he chose to save.
These are not debatable matters, deep points of theology, or even things which need to be proved. They are as plain as the nose on your face. Just listen to the Word of God.
††††††††††† This dear man lived where he lived, experienced all that he experienced in life, and died as he did, when he did, and is today in heaven with Christ because the Lord God loved him with an everlasting love.
But there is much more to Godís salvation than election and predestination.
II. THE SONíS PURCHASE
Because we are sinners, men and women who have broken every precept of Godís holy law continually, from our youth up, the only way a holy, just, and true God could save his people from their sins is if someone is able to stand in their room and stead and satisfy the demands of Godís law and justice for them. So I want you to understand that GODíS SALVATION, THE EVERLASTING SALVATION OF OUR SOULS BY HIS FREE GRACE, WAS EARNED AND PURCHASED FOR HIS PEOPLE BY THE INCARNATION, OBEDIENCE, AND DEATH OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, THE SON OF GOD, AS OUR ALL-SUFFICIENT REPRESENTATIVE AND SUBSTITUTE.
††††††††††† Now listen carefully to what I am telling you. Listen carefully to the teaching of Holy Scripture. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, did not come down here to make salvation possible, to provide the possibility of salvation for men, or to put sinners in a savable state. The Lord Jesus Christ came into this world to save his people from their sins (Matt. 1:21). And I am here to tell you that he has done it. The Lord of glory does not try to save. He saves. He does not co-operate with you, if you will co-operate with him to help you save yourself. He does not try to save all men. He saves some.
A. The Lord Jesus Christ brought in an everlasting righteousness for his elect by his obedience to the entire law and will of God as our Representative.
B. Christ satisfied the justice of God as the sinnersí Substitute, when he was made to be sin for us and died under the wrath of God, because of our sins imputed to him.
C. The righteousness and atonement of Christ is of infinite value because he is both God and man in one glorious person.
D. Because our Savior is himself God, his sacrifice for sin is not only of infinite value, but of infinite efficacy as well. - NOT ONE SOUL FOR WHOM CHRIST DIED SHALL SUFFER THE WRATH OF GOD!
E. The only way a sinner can be made righteous is by divine imputation.
††††††††††† The sinnerís only hope is substitution. And our only Substitute is Christ. God help you to see him as such. What a glorious Savior our Savior is!
††††††††††† Because Christ alone is our Redeemer and our Savior, our God whose glory is great in the salvation of chosen sinners, all the saints in heaven and in earth give praise to him alone as the Lamb of God.
††††††††††† Salvation is accomplished according to the purpose of God the Father, the purchase of God the Son, andÖ
III. THE POWER OF GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT.
††††††††††† The Holy Spirit does not come to invite or even encourage sinners to be born again, or to trust Christ, r to be saved. Not at all. WE ARE, ACCORDING TO SCRIPTURE, BORN AGAIN B THE POWER OF HIS IRRESISTIBLE GRACE, CALLED FROM DEATH TO LIFE BY THAT SAME POWER, GIVEN FAITH BY THAT SAME POWER, AND PRESERVED UNTO ETERNAL GLORY IN CHRIST BY THAT VERY SAME IRRESISTIBLE POWER AND GRACE
††††††††††† Illustrations: † Ezekielís Infant
††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† The Valley of Dry Bones
A. It is by the power of Godís Sprit that sinnerís are born again.
B. It is by the Holy Spiritís power that we are sanctified.
C. It is by the Spirit of God that we are preserved in grace and persevere in faith.
Application: Because salvation is of the Lord we are assured thatÖ
1. Every sinner chosen, redeemed, and called by Godís almighty, saving grace shall be saved.
2. Every sinner who looks to Christ alone as his only all-sufficient Savior shall be saved.
3. Every sinner saved by Godís free grace in Christ shall be perfectly saved in Christ.
††††††††††† There will be no back streets in the New Jerusalem, no uncrowned heads, no embarrassed saints, no degrees of reward or loss of reward. Therefore we say, with our brother and friend, as we temporarily bid him farewell, "The LORD liveth; and blessed be my rock; and let the God of my salvation be exalted."
This day our dear brother and friend is where I soon hope to be and he enjoys what I most long to enjoyÖ
∑ Perfect Communion With Christ!
∑ Perfect Commitment To Christ!
∑ Perfect Conformity To Christ!
††††††††††† Believe now on the Lord Jesus Christ, and this will be the portion of your inheritance as well. May God graciously enable you now to believe, for Christís sake. AMEN.
GRAVE SIDE SERVICE
John 11:25-26† "Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: (26) And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?"
Revelation 20:6† "Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years."
Revelation 14:13† "And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them."
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18† "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. (14) For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. (15) For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. (16) For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: (17) Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. (18) Wherefore comfort one another with these words."
1 Corinthians 15:51-58† "Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, (52) In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. (53) For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. (54) So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. (55) O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? (56) The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. (57) But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (58) Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord."
1 Thessalonians 5:9-10† "For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, (10) Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him."