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Sermon #103 — Romans Series`
Title: “The Purpose of God”
Text: Romans 9:11-13
Subject: The Certain Accomplishment of God’s
Date: Sunday Morning — November 27, 2016
Reading: Isaiah 40:1-31
The title of my message is — “The Purpose Of God.” You will find my text in the 9th chapter of the book of Romans. While you are turning to Romans chapter 9, let me read something to you that Bro. Henry Mahan wrote many years ago…
“There is nothing more comforting to believers than God’s sovereignty over all things. Under the most adverse circumstances, in the most severe trials, we believe that God has ordained our afflictions, that God overrules them, and that God will sanctify them for our good and his glory. There is nothing for which we ought to contend more earnestly than the truth of God’s rule and reign over all things, all creatures, and all their actions. The throne of God, his right to sit on that throne and to do with his own as he will, is what we believe and what we preach. Let us be accused of over-emphasizing the majesty and power of the living God, but never let it be said that we underestimate his glory.”
— Pastor Henry Mahan
Let us never underestimate, or undervalue the glory of our God as he displays it in the accomplishment of his sovereign, eternal purpose. — My subject is “The Purpose Of God.” We believe, according to the Scriptures, that the Lord our God is a God of purpose, absolute and unalterable purpose, a God whose purpose must and shall be accomplished. My text is Romans 9:11.
(Romans 9:11) “(For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth.)”
“The Purpose Of God” — What a blessed subject!
Š “The purpose of God” is “according to election!”
Š “The purpose of God according to election” stands!
Š And “the purpose of God according to election” stands “not of works, but of him that calleth!”
Before the world was made, before time began, almighty God sovereignly purposed all that comes to pass in time. Everything that is, has been, and shall hereafter be was purposed by God from eternity. Everything in the universe is moving toward the predestined end of God’s eternal purpose with absolute precision and accuracy.
Proposition: This is what I am saying. This is the thing I want us to learn, believe, and rely upon — Everything that comes to pass in time was purposed by our God in eternity.
Let’s look into the Word of God to see if this is true. — “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.”
This is God’s explanation of history (Romans 8:28).
(Romans 8:28) “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
This is God’s explanation of election and reprobation. — In our text (Romans 9:11), Paul tells us that God chose Jacob in everlasting love and rejected Esau in everlasting hatred and that he revealed this fact to the boys’ parents “...the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth.”
This is God’s explanation of providence (Ephesians 1:11).
(Ephesians 1:11) “In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.”
This is God’s explanation of all true gospel preaching, evangelism, and missionary labor. In Ephesians 3:11 the Spirit of God tells us that Paul preached the gospel to the Gentiles, even the unsearchable riches of Christ, that the manifold wisdom of God revealed in the gospel of Christ might be made known to all men, “according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
This is God’s explanation of salvation (2 Timothy 1:9).
(2 Timothy 1:9) “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began.”
In these five texts of Holy Scripture (Romans 8:28; 9:11; Ephesians 1:11; 3:11; 2 Timothy 1:9), which we have read from the Inspired Volume, God himself tells us five distinct facts about his purpose.
1. The purpose of God is eternal.
2. The purpose of God includes all things.
(Isaiah 45:7) “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.”
(Romans 11:36) “For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory forever. Amen.”
3. The purpose of God has for its particular and peculiar design the spiritual and eternal benefit of God’s elect. — Everything God has purposed is for the ultimate, spiritual, and eternal blessedness of his covenant people.
4. The purpose of God is immutable and sure.
A.H. Strong was exactly right when he wrote, “What God does, he always purposed to do.” That which comes to pass in time is exactly what God purposed from eternity. The Lord God declares — “My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure” (Isaiah 46:10).
5. In its ultimate end, God’s purpose will accomplish the eternal salvation of his elect and the glory of his own great name.
We rejoice to know that our God is a God of purpose and that his purpose has been, is, and shall be accomplished everywhere, in all things, and at all times. — Yet, we are often confused and frustrated because we do not presently see what God’s purpose is. How often have you said to yourself, “If I could just see what the Lord’s purpose is in this trial, it would make it more bearable?”
I have searched the Scriptures and have found seven things which God has purposed, seven things which must come to pass. We are going to look at several passages of Scripture together. The key word in each text is the word “must.” These seven things must, of a certainty, come to pass. These things must come to pass, because God has purposed that they shall come to pass.
1st — Turn to Luke 9:22. Here we are told by our Lord Jesus himself that the Son of Man must suffer and die upon the cursed tree. This is the matter of first, primary importance. So we will look at this first. The death of our Lord Jesus Christ was not an accident. It is not something that came to pass as the result of man’s free will, or because the Jews would not allow Jesus to be their king! The death of Christ was a necessity. It was something that must be accomplished. He emphatically and repeatedly said so...
(Luke 9:18-22) “And it came to pass, as he was alone praying, his disciples were with him: and he asked them, saying, Whom say the people that I am? (19) They answering said, John the Baptist; but some say, Elias; and others say, that one of the old prophets is risen again. (20) He said unto them, But whom say ye that I am? Peter answering said, The Christ of God. (21) And he straitly charged them, and commanded them to tell no man that thing; (22) Saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day.”
Why? — Why must the Lord Jesus Christ, the holy, sinless Son of God, the perfect Son of Man, the God-man, suffer and die upon the cursed tree? Why must the Lord of Glory lay down his life as a sin-atoning sacrifice at Calvary?
Christ had to die at Jerusalem because the Lord God purposed it from eternity.
(Acts 2:23) “Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:”
(Acts 4:28) “For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done.”
Christ Jesus had to die at Jerusalem two thousand years ago in order to fulfill his covenant engagements as our everlasting Surety. — Our Lord Jesus Christ voluntarily took upon himself the responsibility our redemption from eternity. He freely laid down his life for us at Calvary. Yet, having voluntarily agreed to become our Surety, he had to lay down his life for us. His honor and faithfulness demanded it.
(Genesis 43:8-9) “And Judah said unto Israel his father, Send the lad with me, and we will arise and go; that we may live, and not die, both we, and thou, and also our little ones. (9) I will be surety for him; of my hand shalt thou require him: if I bring him not unto thee, and set him before thee, then let me bear the blame for ever.”
(John 10:15-18) “As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. (16) And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd. (17) Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. (18) No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.”
Christ had to die in the place of his people upon the cross so that the Scriptures might be fulfilled.
Š The Types — The Passover — The Scapegoat
Š The Prophecies
(Acts 13:29) “And when they had fulfilled all that was written of him, they took him down from the tree, and laid him in a sepulchre.”
(Psalms 22:6-8) “But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people. (7) All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, (8) He trusted on the LORD that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.”
(Psalms 22:16) “For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have enclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.”
(Psalms 22:18) “They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.”
(Psalms 34:20) “He keepeth all his bones: not one of them is broken.” (Cf Exodus 12:46).
(Psalms 69:21) “They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.”
(Isaiah 50:6) “I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.”
(Isaiah 53:3-6) “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. (4) Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. (5) But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. (6) All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.”
(Isaiah 53:10-12) “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. (11) He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. (12) Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.”
(Zechariah 12:10) “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.”
It was absolutely necessary for the Lord Jesus Christ to die in our place at Calvary in order for the holy and just God to save his people.
(Isaiah 45:21) “Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? Who hath told it from that time? Have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me.”
(Isaiah 45:22) “Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.”
(John 3:14-17) “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: (15) That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. (16) For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (17) For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”
(Romans 3:24-26) “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: (25) Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; (26) To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.”
Only through the death of the God-man, our most glorious Christ, is it possible for our God to be “a just God and a Savior.” Only by the sacrifice of Christ could...
Š The Righteousness of God be Revealed.
Š The Sin of Man be Exposed and Condemned.
Š The Justice of God be Satisfied.
Š Sin be Put Away.
Š The People of God be Forgiven and Justified.
Š The Mercy, Love, and Grace of God be Manifested.
However, the death of Christ alone is not sufficient to save us. — Don’t think I have lost my mind. Hear me out.
2nd — In order to save us from our sins the Lord Jesus Christ must rise from the dead.
(John 20:9) “For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead.”
A dead Christ could never save anyone. A dead Christ could never be of any value to either God or man. A dead Christ might be a good example; but he could never be a mighty Savior. It was when the crucified Christ arose from the dead that the foundation of our faith was fixed.
It was his resurrection that demonstrated, in an undeniable manner, that our Redeemer is the Son of God.
(Romans 1:1-4) “Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God, (2) (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) (3) Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; (4) And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.”
The resurrection of Christ assures us that our sins have been put away and justice has been satisfied.
(Romans 4:25) “Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.”
The greatest apologetic for Christianity in this world is the empty tomb.
The resurrection of our Lord is the sure evidence of his power and ability to save every sinner who comes to God by him.
(Romans 8:31-34) “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? (32) He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? (33) Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. (34) Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.”
(Hebrews 7:25) “Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.”
3rd — Here is the third thing that must come to pass because God has purposed it. The gospel of the grace of God, the glorious gospel of the glorious Christ, must be preached in all the world.
(Mark 13:10) “And the gospel must first be published among all nations.”
Here we are told that, prior to the second advent of our Lord Jesus Christ, the gospel of the grace and glory of God in him must be heralded throughout the whole world. There are three reasons why it must be so...
1. To Declare to All Men the Glorious Accomplishments of the Son of God.
2. For the Salvation of God’s Elect out of Every Nation, Kindred, Tribe, and Tongue.
3. To Leave the Reprobate, the Unbelieving, Without Excuse.
4th — Once this gospel has been declared in all the world, and before our great Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, comes again, all God’s elect must be saved. God upholds and preserves this world and allows it to stand only because he has a people in this world he is determined to save.
(John 10:16) “And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.”
(Isaiah 65:8) “Thus saith the LORD, As the new wine is found in the cluster, and one saith, Destroy it not; for a blessing is in it: so will I do for my servants’ sakes, that I may not destroy them all.”
(2 Peter 3:9) “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
All God’s elect shall be saved. Not one of Christ’s sheep shall perish. Every sinner redeemed by blood shall be saved by grace and crowned with glory.
Š The purpose of God demands it!
Š The law of God demands it!
Š The satisfaction of Christ demands it!
Christ must come seeking his lost sheep (John 4:4).
(John 4:1-4) “When therefore the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John, (2) (Though Jesus himself baptized not, but his disciples,) (3) He left Judaea, and departed again into Galilee. (4) And he must needs go through Samaria.”
Before any can enter into the kingdom of heaven, they must be born again (John 3:3-8).
(John 3:3-8) “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. (4) Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? (5) Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. (6) That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. (7) Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. (8) The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.”
They must come to God in, by, and through Christ the Mediator, believing that he is and that he is the Rewarder of them who diligently seek him (Hebrews 11:6).
Their wills must be broken by almighty grace (Psalm 110:3).
They must learn to worship God in Spirit and in truth (John 4:23-24).
5th — Be sure you get this fifth thing purposed by our God. — The Lord Jesus Christ must reign as king.
(1 Corinthians 15:24-28) “Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. (25) For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. (26) The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. (27) For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. (28) And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.”
Our all glorious Christ, the Son of God, is the sovereign Ruler and King of the universe. We must either bow to his dominion or perish as his enemies. There are no other options. Repent or perish! Turn or burn! Bow or be damned! Either way, “He must reign!”
Š For the Salvation of His People (John 17:1-3).
Š Because He Earned the Right (Romans 14:9; Philippians 2:9-11).
Š Because None Can Stop Him!
6th — These bodies must be raised from the grave.
(1 Corinthians 15:51-55) “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?”
Once God’s elect have all been saved by his grace and all the purpose of God has been accomplished in this time world the Lord Jesus Christ must come again in power and great glory to gather his elect unto himself in resurrection glory! Oh, yes! Christ must come again. Our Redeemer shall come again...
Š To Raise His Saints.
Š To Destroy His Enemies.
Š To Create All Things New.
Š To Reign Gloriously Forever!
(Job 19:25-27) “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: (26) And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: (27) Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.”
Great White Throne
7th — I know this too. — According to the eternal purpose of God, every one of us must stand before the Lord Jesus Christ in judgment.
(2 Corinthians 5:10-11) “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. (11) Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.”
(Acts 17:31) “Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.”
When at last everything which was purposed by our God from eternity has been accomplished, you and I are going to meet God in judgment. When you stand before Christ your God, before august majesty of his Great White Throne in judgment, how will you fair?
Children of God, take comfort in this. — The purpose of God shall stand. Our God will do all his pleasure.
I call for you who are yet rebels against King Jesus to bow to him now. The King of glory has sent me to proclaim to you his terms of peace — SURRENDER!
Illustration: Lee at Appomattox Courthouse