Sermon #1838                                                                                                   Miscellaneous Sermons

 

      Title:                                 “We can’t both be saved.

 

      Text:                                 Galatians 1:6-9

      Subject:               The Gospel of the Grace of God

      Date:                                Tuesday Evening — April 6, 2010

      Tape #                             Z-84a

      Readings:           Curtis Hall and Rex Bartley

      Introduction:

 

Several years ago, a young Campbellite (Church of Christ) preacher came by my office to discuss some things I have written. He wanted to debate with me about those things. So our conversation did not last very long. Obviously, the two of us agreed on very little; but he made a statement as soon as he sat down with which I fully agreed. He said, “If we believe two different gospels, if we believe two different things about salvation, we can’t both be saved.” He was obviously surprised when I replied, “I fully agree. If we believe two different gospels, if we believe two different things about salvation, we can’t both be saved. You’re dead sure right about that.”

 

That is exactly what Paul said in Galatians 1:6-9. Judaizers came into the church after him and sought to turn men and women away from the gospel of Christ, sought to pervert the gospel of the grace of God, not by openly denying it but by subtly mixing works with grace, by mixing the works of man with the work of God in salvation. Read what Paul says about that in our text (Galatians 1:6-9).

 

(Galatians 1:6-9) “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.”

 

Not all churches and preachers preach the same gospel. According to what I hear on the radio and television, and according to what I read from a broad spectrum of religious writers, there are many gospels being preached today.

 

1.    Some seek salvation through family ties. Many believe that parents can stand for their children before God. They have their babies sprinkled. When they get a little older they catechize them, confirm them and call it salvation.

2.    Others seek salvation in church membership. They imagine that having their names on a church roll will give them acceptance with God.

3.    Multitudes seek salvation in the ordinances what they call the sacraments. — Baptismal Regeneration. — “Baptism does the same thing the blood of Christ does, it washes away sin” – (Steve Wolfgang, Pastor at Danville Church of Christ). — The Supper — The Mass, Penance, Etc.

4.    Many seek salvation by moral uprightness. They vainly imagine that they can tip the scales of Divine justice in their favor by their own imaginary good works.

5.    Others seek salvation in a decision for Jesus. They think that since they decided to let the Lord save them, walked the church aisle and said “the sinner’s prayer” all is well with their souls.

6.    Some think that salvation is to be found in a doctrinal system. As you well know, I delight in the great doctrine of God’s sovereign grace revealed in the Gospel. But a sound doctrinal creed does not prove that there is grace in the heart.

7.    And many seek salvation in an emotional experience. They are convinced that they are saved because they’ve had some sort of charismatic religious experience that gave them a sensational spiritual feeling.

 

It is written in the Scriptures – There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death (Proverbs 14:12; Isaiah 28:14-20; 16:25).

 

(Proverbs 16:2) “All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits.”

 

(Isaiah 28:14-20) “Wherefore hear the word of the LORD, ye scornful men, that rule this people which is in Jerusalem. (15) Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us: for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves: (16) Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste. (17) Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place. (18) And your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then ye shall be trodden down by it. (19) From the time that it goeth forth it shall take you: for morning by morning shall it pass over, by day and by night: and it shall be a vexation only to understand the report. (20) For the bed is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it: and the covering narrower than that he can wrap himself in it.”

 

(Isaiah 55:8-9) “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

 

One Gospel

 

Proposition: Let me say one more time, (I hope you will hear what God says!), According to the Word of God there is only one gospel (Galatians 1:6-9).

 

(Galatians 1:6-9) “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.”

 

Romans 1:1-4

 

(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.”

 

Š      It is the Gospel of God.

Š      It is the Gospel promised in the Old Testament.

Š      It is the Gospel concerning his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. — “Made of the seed of David according to the flesh.” — “declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.

 

1 Corinthians 15:1-3

 

(1 Corinthians 15:1-3) “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures.”

 

The Gospel reveals “H-O-W that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures.

Š      Sovereignty

Š      Substitution

Š      Satisfaction

Š      Success

 

With the Apostle Paul, I rejoice to declare that this is — My Gospel.” This is the Gospel upon which I base all the hope of my soul for all eternity, the Gospel that gives me hope in Christ. This is the Gospel I preach. This is the Gospel of Grace Baptist Church. This is the Gospel you send your pastor to preach everywhere. I want everyone here to frankly and honestly examine what I have to say in this message by the Word of God. I want you to make personal determination. I want to set before you five distinctive points of my gospel. I want you to look at the Word of God and make this determination: — Is my Gospel the Gospel of God? There is only one gospel. Is the Gospel I believe that one, true, saving Gospel revealed in the Book of God? A lot is at stake here!

 

(2 Corinthians 11:1-4) “Would to God ye could bear with me a little in my folly: and indeed bear with me. 2 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. 3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. 4 For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.”

 

When Paul speaks of a false prophet coming and preaching another Jesus, or another Spirit, or Gospel, to which he adds, “ye might well bear with him,” his words, at first sight might seem confusing. — In the margin of our King James Version the words “bear with him are rendered “bear with me. The word “him,” is italicized, to tell us that it has been added by the translators.

 

But our translators, I think, were correct in their understanding of the text. Paul appears here to be speaking sarcastically. He appears to me to be saying, “If anyone comes to you preaching a better Gospel than I have preached to you, you should abandon me and everything I have taught you, and hear him.”

Š      A Better Jesus, a Surer, More Effectual Savior and Redeemer

Š      A Better Spirit, a Better Sanctifier and Comforter, a Surer Seal and Preserver

Š      A Better Gospel, a More God Honoring, Conscience Satisfying, More Thoroughly Biblical Revelation of Grace and Good News

 

I say the same thing to you! If ever you hear a preacher who preaches and holds forth a better Jesus, more lovely, more powerful to save, more suited to your souls’ needs, — or a better Spirit, more lovely and loving, more effectual to regenerate your soul, more effectually bring Christ to you and more effectually bring you to Christ, — a better Gospel, containing greater glad tidings than redemption accomplished and salvation free in Christ Jesus, forget me and my doctrine and hear that man and his Gospel!

 

Five Things

 

Picking up right where I left off last Tuesday night, let me show you five things about the Gospel we believe and preach which distinguish it from every false gospel and distinguish us from the religious world around us.

 

1.    Divine Sovereignty

 

First, the Gospel of this Book, the Gospel our Lord and his Apostles preached, the Gospel we believe and preach, the only true Gospel reveals, proclaims and exalts a God who is totally sovereign in all things (Psalms 115:1-3; 135:6).

 

(Psalms 115:1-3) “Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth’s sake. (2) Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God? (3) But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.”

 

(Psalms 135:6) “Whatsoever the LORD pleased, that did he in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places.”

 

Here are five things that this Book declares it pleased God to do.

 

1stIt pleased the Lordto make you his people (1 Samuel 12:22).

 

(1 Samuel 12:20-24) “And Samuel said unto the people, Fear not: ye have done all this wickedness: yet turn not aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart; 21 And turn ye not aside: for then should ye go after vain things, which cannot profit nor deliver; for they are vain. 22 For the LORD will not forsake his people for his great name’s sake: because it hath pleased the LORD to make you his people. 23 Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way: 24 Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things he hath done for you.”

 

2ndIt pleased the Lordthat all fullness dwell in his Son (Colossians 1:19).

 

(Colossians 1:18-19) “And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. 19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell.”

 

3rdIt pleased the Lordto bruise Christ in the place of his people (Isaiah 53:10).

 

(Isaiah 53:10) “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.”

 

4thIt pleased the Lordto reveal his Son in me (Galatians 1:15-16). — “Christ in you, the Hope of glory!

 

(Galatians 1:15-16) “But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, 16 To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood:”

 

5thIt pleased the Lordto do it by the preaching of the Gospel (1 Corinthians 1:21).

 

(1 Corinthians 1:18-21) “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. 20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? 21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.”

 

2.    Total Depravity

 

Second, the Gospel of God recognizes and declares the total depravity and spiritual inability of all men since the sin and fall of our father Adam.

 

What happened in the garden? Did man fall or stump his toe? Did man get sick, or did he die? If he just stumped his toe, all he needs is a walking stick. If he just got sick, all he needs is a little religious medicine. If he died, he must have a Savior! What does the Word of God say? — “Man, at his best estate, is altogether vanity!

Š      Psalm 14:2-3

Š      Psalm 51:5

Š      Psalm 58:3

Š      Ecclesiastes 7:29

Š      Isaiah 1:4-6

Š      Romans 3:10-14

Š      Romans 5:12-19

Š      John 5:40-44

Š      Ephesians 2:1-4

Š      Colossians 2:13

 

Man, at his best estate, is altogether vanity!” —Because man is depraved, he cannot do good. — Because he is dead, he cannot change his condition. — Because man is a fallen, depraved, spiritually dead creature, if he is saved, it must be declared, “Salvation is of the Lord!” — “Ye must be born again.”

      Illustrations:      Jarvis’ Daughter

                                                                        The Widow’s Son

                                                                        Lazarus

 

3.    Covenant Grace

 

Third, the Gospel of God, the only true Gospel good news based upon a covenant of grace (Hebrews 13:20).

 

(Hebrews 13:20-21) “Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, 21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”

 

The word “covenant” appears in the Word of God 272 times. God made many covenants (Adam – Noah – Abraham – David). But I am talking about the everlasting covenant of grace, of which these covenants were only types. This covenant of grace and salvation is called “the everlasting covenant.” — David sang about it (2 Samuel 23:5) when he was dying! — Paul rejoiced in it (Hebrews 7:22; 8:6; 13:20). — Our Lord Jesus made it the basis of his prayer and his work (John 17:2, 9, 24; 6:37-39). — Our salvation was secured by it (2 Timothy 1:9-10; Ephesians 1:3-6).

Illustration: Judah, Surety for Benjamin

                                                                       Mephibosheth saved by a Covenant

 

4.    A Real Savior

 

Fourth, more than anything else, that which distinguishes the one true Gospel from every false Gospel is this: — Every false gospel proclaims a sham savior, a worthless redeemer, whereas the Gospel of God proclaims a real Savior, an effectual Redeemer, who has actually redeemed and saved his people!

 

Our Savior is our God! Jesus our Savior is Jehovah our God!He that hath seen me hath seen the Father.” All the fullness of the Triune God dwells in the Man Christ Jesus. — Were he not God, he could not be our Savior.

Š       God alone can bring in everlasting righteousness!

Š       God alone can satisfy justice!

Š       God alone can save!

 

The Savior I preach is a real Savior, an effectual Savior, a Savior who saves, a Redeemer who redeems, not a try to redeemer, not a want to be savior, but a real Savior (Isaiah 42:1-4; Matthew 1:21).

 

(Isaiah 42:1-4) “Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. (2) He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. (3) A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. (4) He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law.”

 

(Matthew 1:21) “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.”

 

There are some people in this world who are his people. They were his before he came to save them.

Š      My Sheep” (John 10).

Š      “All which He hath given me!”

 

And the Lord Jesus Christ shall save his people (John 10:16). — “He shall not fail!

 

(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.”

 

  • He brought in righteousness for them (Romans 5:19). He makes us righteous!
  • He redeemed them (Ephesians 1:7; 2 Corinthians 5:21).
  • He sanctifies them (1 Corinthians 1:30).
  • He bought forgiveness for them (Ephesians 1:7).
  • He is all we need (Colossians 2:9-10).

 

5.    Free Grace

 

The Gospel of God reveals a real Savior to real sinners, proclaiming free salvation, because, fifth, it is a Gospel of pure, free, unconditional, unqualified grace – (Ephesians 2:8-9; 2 Timothy 1;9; Romans 11:6).

 

Š      Electing Grace.

Š      Predestinating Grace.

Š      Redeeming Grace.

Š      Prevenient Grace.

Š      Regenerating Grace.

Š      Preserving Grace.

Š      Resurrecting Grace.

Š      Glorifying Grace.

Š       

This is good news to sinners, good news to all who need a Savior, good news to all who believe on the Son of God, to all who trust the Lord Jesus Christ. Glorious distinction this! — We’ve got good news for sinners. — All other religions advise you to do. — We have no advice, but only good news. — They say, “Do.” — We say, “Done!”

 

(Romans 4:20-25) “He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; (21) And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. (22) And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. (23) Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him; (24) But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; (25) Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.”

 

(Romans 5:1-11) “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: (2) By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. (3) And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; (4) And patience, experience; and experience, hope: (5) And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. (6) For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. (7) For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. (8) But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (9) Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. (10) For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. (11) And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.”

 

“Nothing, either great or small,

Nothing, sinner, no;

Jesus did it, did it all,

Long, long ago.

 

When He from His lofty throne

Stooped to do and die,

Everything was fully done:

Hearken to His cry: -

 

‘It is finished!’ Yes, indeed,

Finished every jot:

Sinner, this is all you need,

Tell me, is it not?

 

Weary, working, plodding one,

Why toil you so?

Cease your doing: all was done

Long, long ago.

 

Till to Jesus’ work you cling

By a simple faith,

Doing is a deadly thing,

Doing ends in death.

 

Cast your deadly doing down,

Down at Jesus’ feet,

Stand in Him, in Him alone,

Gloriously complete!”

 

Come to Christ now, right where you are; but don’t move a muscle! To Come to Christ is to acknowledge your need of him (1 John 1:9). — To come to Christ is to believe on his name, — Trust his work and bow to him as Lord!

 

“Come, ye sinners poor and needy,

Weak and wounded, sick and sore,

Jesus ready, stands to save you,

Full of pity, joined with power.

 

Come, ye weary, heavy laden,

Bruised and mangled by the foil,

If you tarry till you’re better,

You will never come at all.

 

Let not conscience make you linger,

Nor of fitness fondly dream,

All the fitness He requireth,

Is to feel your need of Him!

 

I will arise and go to Jesus!

He will embrace me in His arms!

In the arms of my dear Savior,

Oh, there are ten thousand charms!”

 

Illustration: The Indian and The Worm

 

(Isaiah 52:7-10) “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth! 8 Thy watchmen shall lift up the voice; with the voice together shall they sing: for they shall see eye to eye, when the LORD shall bring again Zion. 9 Break forth into joy, sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem: for the LORD hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem. 10 The LORD hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.”

 

Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

Don Fortner

 

 

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