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Sermon #48[i] — Isaiah Series

 

Title:                           My Confession

 

Text:                            Isaiah 12:1-2

Subject:                     Every Believer’s Confession of Faith

Date:                          Sunday Evening — April 15, 2018

Readings:     Bobbie Estes and Rex Bartley

Introduction:

 

Whenever we read the prophecies of the Old Testament Scriptures we need to see both the immediate and the ultimate fulfilment of the prophet’s words. Each prophecy has both an immediate, typical and an ultimate, messianic fulfilment. Certainly, this is true with regard the 12th chapter of the Book of Isaiah.

 

Background

 

While you are turning to my text in Isaiah 12, let me remind you of the background. This 12th chapter of Isaiah is the conclusion of the prophet’s sermon which begins in chapter 8.

 

In its immediate context, when Isaiah spoke these words, he was referring to God’s deliverance of the outcasts of Israel and the dispersed Judah. When Sennacherib, the godless king of Assyria invaded the land of Judea, it looked as though the nation of Israel would be utterly destroyed. And the Assyrian invasion was a terrible display of God’s anger against the sins of his people. But here Isaiah assures God’s elect remnant of salvation from the hands of that wicked tyrant, Sennacherib. That is the immediate, typical fulfilment of the prophecy. But there is much more in the text.

 

In its ultimate, spiritual, messianic scope this text is a prophecy of the salvation of God’s elect in the day of his grace when Christ is revealed in their hearts. This text is an illustration of what happens to each of God’s elect when they are translated from the power of darkness into the kingdom of his dear Son. Isaiah shows us what happens to a sinner when he is born again by the power of God the Holy Spirit, delivered from the spirit of bondage and wrath, and brought by the Spirit of adoption into the liberty of the Sons of God.

 

As we read the words of my text, every regenerate heart will say, “Amen.” And as I attempt to preach from these words, I am sure that I will only be echoing the thoughts of your heart if you are a believer. But I want to use my text in a very personal way, applying it to my own experience of grace. For you who are taking notes, the title of my message is — My Confession. I’m going to give you my confession of faith. But, as I do, I will be giving every believer’s confession, the confession of every sinner saved by the grace of God. Have you found Isaiah 12? — Here’s my confession

 

(Isaiah 12:1-2) And in that day thou shalt say, O LORD, I will praise thee: though thou wast angry with me, thine anger is turned away, and thou comfortedst me. (2) Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.

 

Proposition: That is the confession every sinner saved by the grace of God’s makes.

  • That is the confession we make to God. And that is the confession we make to men.
  • That is the confession we make to the world. And that is the confession we make to one another.
  • That is the confession we make in prayer. And that is the confession we make in song.
  • That is the confession we make in preaching. And that is the confession we make in quiet meditation.

 

(Isaiah 12:1-2) And in that day thou shalt say, O LORD, I will praise thee: though thou wast angry with me, thine anger is turned away, and thou comfortedst me. (2) Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.

 

The word “praise” in verse 1 might be better translated “confess.” Isaiah is talking about the believer’s confession of faith. The Lord God himself is speaking to us by the mouth of his prophet, Isaiah. And he says — “And in that day thou shalt say, O Lord, I will confess thee.”

 

Four Things

 

Before I get to the confession that I want to make in your hearing, I want to show you four things by way of introduction. But listen carefully, in this case, the introduction is part of the message.

 

1. There is a day appointed by God when he will save each of his elect.

 

God says, “in that day.” — “That day” is what our Lord calls “thy time” and “the time of love” (Ezekiel 16:8) It is the time appointed by God from eternity for the calling of his elect. There is a set time when the Lord God visits each of his chosen with almighty, irresistible, effectual, saving grace. It is the time when he makes his chosen ones willing in the day of his power and effectually draws them to Christ (Psalm 65:4; 110:3). — In that day,” this is what God does for his elect.

Š      He reveals Christ in them (Galatians 1:15-16).

Š      He raises them up from death to life (John 5:25).

Š      He gives them faith in his dear Son (Colossians. 2:12).

 

2. Every sinner saved by the grace of God will confess his Lord and Redeemer.

 

Notice the personal pronouns used in verse 1. — “Thou shalt say, I will confess.” This is a personal faith arising from a personal knowledge of Christ. You see, salvation is a personal thing. The Door of life eternal is open wide, so that all who will may enter in and be saved. But you must enter in by the Door. Sinners must go through the Door alone, one by one (Isaiah 27:12; Ezekiel 30:27). — Salvation is an intensely personal thing!

 

(Isaiah 27:12) And it shall come to pass in that day, that the LORD shall beat off from the channel of the river unto the stream of Egypt, and ye shall be gathered one by one, O ye children of Israel.

 

(Ezekiel 20:37) And I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant.

 

Ours is a personal confession; but it is also a public confession. It is open, publicly avowed, and published abroad.

 

“God’s grace does not come into the heart as a beggar into a barn and lie hidden away as if it stole a night’s lodging. No. Its arrival is known all over the house, and every chamber of the soul testifies of its presence. Grace is like a bunch of lavender. It discovers itself by its sweet smell. Like the nightingale it is heard where it is not seen. Like the spark which falls into the midst of straw it burns, and blazes, and consumes, and so reveals itself by its own energetic operations.”

C. H. Spurgeon

 

If the Lord God is pleased to save you by his free grace, you will confess him. You will gladly confess him. You will say to him, “O Lord, I will confess You. Yesterday, I blasphemed your name. This morning, I ignored you. Long, I have despised you. But I knew you not. But now, O Lord my God, I will confess you and will confess you…

  • In my Heart!
  • With my Mouth!
  • By Water Baptism!
  • As a Faithful Witness!”

 

3. This confession is itself the product of God’s almighty grace.

 

It is the Lord who says, “In that day thou shalt say, O Lord, I will confess thee.” When God says, “Thou shalt,” you shall! What God has spoken God will bring to pass. His Word cannot fail. Blessed be God, he knows how…

  • To save His Own Elect!
  • To Drive Unbelief from His People!
  • To Bring us to Embrace His Dear Son!

 

4. And the believer’s confession of faith is all about the Lord himself.

 

Where iniquity is pardoned and grace is bestowed God is all in all. There is not a record in the Bible of a single sinner saved by the grace of God who attributes anything to himself but sin. The whole work of grace is attributed to God alone (Ephesians 1:3-14).

Š      Election by God the Father

Š      Redemption by God the Son

Š      Regeneration by God the Holy Spirit

 

The man who now speaks to you is a sinner. I am a sinner by birth, a sinner by nature, a sinner by choice, and a sinner by practice. I am, all over, inside and outside, in and of myself, nothing but a sinner. There is nothing in me but rottenness. There is not one particle of spiritual goodness, righteousness, or decency within me. I know who I am. And I know what I am. My name is “Sin.”

 

I would disclose my whole complaint,

But where shall I begin?

No words of mine can fully paint

That worst distemper, sin.

 

It lies not in a single part,

But through my frame is spread;

A burning fever in my heart,

A palsy in my head.

 

But I am a sinner saved by the grace of God. And I gladly acknowledge to all who hear my voice, “By the grace of God I am what I am” (1 Corinthians 15:10).

  • This is my doctrine.
  • This is my daily experience.
  • This is my confession.

 

Will you give me your attention as I make my confession of my God and of his saving grace in Christ as I have experienced it?

 

Illustration: The Remembrance Room

 

From my heart and with my mouth, I now say, “O Lord, I will confess thee!

  • As my Sovereign Lord.
  • As my Sin-atoning Redeemer.
  • As my Almighty Savior.
  • As my Covenant God.

 

Anger Felt

 

1stThou wast angry with me.” — Call it what you will, put it in whatever theological terms you choose, but there was a time when I was awakened to a sense of my personal sin and made to realize that God almighty was justly and righteously angry with me. I was made to realize that I was, like all other men and women, a child of wrath by nature, cursed and condemned before God’s holy law (Romans 3:19; 7:9).

 

(Romans 3:19) Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

 

(Romans 7:9) For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.

 

Illustration: Gomer — Hosea 2:9-13

 

(Hosea 2:9-13) Therefore will I return, and take away my corn in the time thereof, and my wine in the season thereof, and will recover my wool and my flax given to cover her nakedness. (10) And now will I discover her lewdness in the sight of her lovers, and none shall deliver her out of mine hand. (11) I will also cause all her mirth to cease, her feast days, her new moons, and her sabbaths, and all her solemn feasts. (12) And I will destroy her vines and her fig trees, whereof she hath said, These are my rewards that my lovers have given me: and I will make them a forest, and the beasts of the field shall eat them. (13) And I will visit upon her the days of Baalim, wherein she burned incense to them, and she decked herself with her earrings and her jewels, and she went after her lovers, and forgat me, saith the LORD.

 

Illustration: Jacob — Genesis 32

 

Has God made you aware of your sin and your just condemnation before his holy law? I hope he will do so now. You will never know the love of God in Christ until you are made to know the wrath of God without Christ. You will never be saved until you are lost. God will not robe you with the righteousness of Christ until he strips you of your own righteousness. He will not heal you until he has wounded you and you have need of healing. He will not lift you up until he casts you down. He will not make you alive until he first slays you.

 

This I know, God was angry with me And I confess to God before you all that his anger against me was fully justified (Psalm 51:4)

 

(Psalm 51:1-5) Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. (2) Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. (3) For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. (4) Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. (5) Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

 

Anger Gone

 

2nd — But, blessed be his name, my confession does not stop there. — “Though thou wast angry with me, thine anger is turned away!

 

Is it possible for a man to know that? Can I know, indeed, that I am forgiven? Can this matter of forgiveness really be known as a matter of certainty, so that a sinful man can honestly look upon the holy God and declare, “Thine anger is turned away?” I say he can. More emphatically, this is my own, personal confession of faith. — “O LORD, though thou wast angry with me, thine anger is turned away!Upon what grounds can I make such a confession of confident faith?

  • Not My Feeling!
  • Not My Faith!
  • Not My Experience!

 

I make this confession upon the authority of God’s holy, infallible Word. The basis of my assurance is the Word of God alone (1 John 5:1-14).

 

(1 John 5:1-14) Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and everyone that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. (2) By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. (3) For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. (4) For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. (5) Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? (6) This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth. (7) For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. (8) And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one. (9) If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son. (10) He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. (11) And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. (12) He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. (13) These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God. (14) And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us:

 

In the Book of God I read that Christ died for sinners (Romans 5:6-8; 1 Timothy 1:15-16).

 

(Romans 5:8) But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

 

(1 Timothy 1:15-16) This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. (16) Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.

 

The Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died upon Calvary’s dark, cursed tree as the Substitute for an elect race. He bore their sin and was punished in their place under the wrath of God, so that God, without violating his holy justice, might freely forgive those who are washed in his precious blood. My question then is, who is that elect race? Who are those people for whom Christ died? I open the Word of God and read that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.” Because I am assured that I am a sinner, I am assured that Christ died for me. I cannot doubt it.

 

Next, the Word of God declares, “He that believeth on him is not condemned (John 3:18). — I do believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, I do not trust him as I should. I do not trust him as I would. But I do trust Christ alone for all my acceptance with God.

Š      His Blood.

Š      His Righteousness.

Š      His Intercession.

 

If God’s Word is true, and it is, then I am not condemned!

 

Again, the Book of God declares, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved (Mark 16:16). — I trust Christ alone as my Savior, and in obedience to his command as my Lord, I have been baptized. And upon the basis of God’s own Word I am assured that God’s anger is turned away. The blood of Christ applied to my heart by the Holy Spirit through faith has purged my conscience from all sin and guilt. And God’s anger is turned away (Psalm 32:1-5).

 

(Psalm 32:1-5) Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. (2) Blessed is the man unto whom the LORD imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile. (3) When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. (4) For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah. (5) I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah.

 

Comfort Given

 

3rd — Read on. — And thou comfortest me.” — Since the day that God’s anger was turned away from my conscience, the Lord has comforted me. Though I am weak, he is strong. Though I am full of sin, he is full of mercy. Though I am tempted, he is faithful. And he comforts me with…

  • The Assurance of Propitiation Made (1 John 2:1-2).
  • The Awareness of Providence Good (Romans 8:28).
  • The Application of Promises Sure (2 Corinthians. 1:20). — His Presence! — His Preservation! — His Second Coming!

 

My Salvation

 

4thBehold, God is my salvation!— God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, is my salvation. God the Father planned my salvation. God the Son purchased my salvation. And God the Holy Ghost brought salvation to me.

 

Because God is my salvation,I will trust and not be afraid.” — I will trust him and not be afraid of him!

 

The Lord JEHOVAH is my strength and my song.” — My Savior is Jehovah.

  • Jehovah-jireh — The Lord Who Provides.
  • Jehovah-rapha — The Lord Who Heals.
  • Jehovah-nissi — The Lord our Banner.
  • Jehovah-m’kaddesh — “The Lord which doth sanctify you.
  • Jehovah-shalom — The Lord our Peace.
  • Jehovah-ra-ah — The Lord our Shepherd.
  • Jehovah-tsidkenu — The Lord our Righteousness.
  • Jehovah-shammah — The Lord is There.
  • Jehovah-Jesus — The Lord Who Saves.

 

Jehovah is my Strength.

  • For Every Trial.
  • For Every Duty.
  • For Every Day.

 

Jehovah is my Song.

 

I will sing of my Redeemer,

With His blood He purchased me!

On the cruel cross He suffered

From the curse to set me free!

 

He also is become my Salvation.”

  • By His Own Appointment.
  • By His Own Accomplishments.
  • By His Almighty Grace.
  • By Faith.

 

(1 Corinthians 1:30-31) But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: (31) That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

 

Illustration: The Chief and the Worm

 The Dying Leper

 

Amen.


 

 

 

 

 

 

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[i]           Danville — Sunday Evening — April 15, 2018

         Millsite Baptist Church — Cottageville, WV — (MON-04/02/18)