Archives for category: Theological

The Wickedness of Dishonoring Parents

This second message on the Fifth Commandment is based upon Deuteronomy 27:16, where God places His divine curse upon children who set light by their parents.  Modern Americans have been taught to think that disobedience and disrespect toward parents is a trivial matter; in God’s eyes, however, it is a damnable sin, worthy of His eternal curse.  The only hope for sinners is in a Saviour Who lived in perfect obedience toward His own parents, and died as a substitute in our place.  This message, then, examines several passages concerning the duties owed by children to parents, and ends with an exhortation to look in faith to the only perfect Child and Man that ever lived.

Because we are dead to sin but alive unto God, the apostle admonishes us to not permit sin to reign in our mortal body, that we should obey it in the lusts thereof.  Sin still dwells in the body, and will never be finally eradicated until death.  There are still unholy passions, sinful habits and intuitions still residing within this corrupt flesh.  But we are to battle with these in the power of the Holy Spirit, and subdue them to the glory of God.


We are to know the law and the commandments of God, so we know that service we are to render unto Him, and also what things we are to avoid.  We can only forbid sin to reign if we know what sin is, and sin is clearly defined in I John 3:4 as the transgression of the law.  Whatever transgresses God’s law is to be rooted up out of our life, and forbidden any place in the government of our lives.  It has no place in the life of one who is dead to sin and alive unto God.


Christ’s Character and Word

This is my latest message from the gospel of John, and it deals primarily deals with Christ’s challenge, “Which of you convinceth Me of sin?” and His great statement that those who are of God hear God’s words.  The text sets forth beautifully the immaculate character of our Redeemer, Who only among the sons of men could claim to be entirely without sin (thus making Him the perfect sin offering, and the Provider of our righteousness).  It also challenges each of us to see whether we are of God, testing ourselves by whether we hear God’s words or no.

As men regard and treat the Son of God, Who is also the Son of man, the Christ of God, so are they saved or lost.  If they believe not in Him, they shall die in their sins.  The aversion of the natural man to the person and work of Jesus Christ is dreadful.  Nothing is more foolish, yet nothing more perverse or stubborn than unbelief.


Verse 11 is the first personal and pastoral exhortation which Paul gives to the Romans, and it is one of the utmost importance.  If we do not count ourselves as having died unto sin and as those who are now alive unto God, we are likely to still live as those who are in bondage, forgetting and missing out on many of the privileges that are afforded to the child of God.  We are to reckon, and thus remind ourselves, that sin can no longer condemn us, and therefore we no longer need live in terror of judgment.


Likewise, we are to remember that sin’s dominion in our lives has been broken in every way, and we are no longer slaves under that cruel taskmaster.  We have the Spirit of God, Who empowers us to live unto God, and we are to think of ourselves in this light, praise God for His mercy, beseech His constant aid, and live our lives to Him and for Him.  We were once dead unto God, caring nothing for His commandments and rejecting the yoke of His service, but now we are alive unto Him, and rejoice to wear the mantle of Christ’s disciples.  His yoke is easy and His burden is light, and we rejoice that God has granted us the privilege and the ability to live unto Him through the saving work of His dear Son.


When Christ died, He died unto sin, or rather for sin.  He died because our sin was imputed to Him, and He was constrained as our surety to suffer the penalty due unto it, which is death.  But that offering needed only to be made one time, because in His cross work our Lord made entire satisfaction to God for the sins of His people.  When He rose from the dead, ensuring our justification, He had utterly dispensed with our sin, leaving it in the tomb behind Him, never to see the light of day again.  He certainly will never sin in His own right, and it is equally certain that God will not again charge Him with our sin.  He made one offering for sins forever, and He is now set down on the right hand of God, from henceforth expecting till His enemies be made His footstool.  By one offering He perfected forever them that are sanctified, and now He lives again to God, by the power of God.  It is impossible that our Saviour, Who was resurrected from the dead by the glory of the Father, can perish again, and come under subjection to death.  He lives unto God, and even that human body in which our Lord suffered and died now lives forever, and can never again be subject to the pains of death.  In that same body, where He now sits at the right hand of the Majesty in the heavens, our Lord lives unto God, continuing to work the will of the Father in His sovereign government of the kingdoms of the world.


Christ’s one-time death unto sin, and resurrection to a new and endless life unto God, is the pattern of God’s dealing with the believer.  We are dead unto sin, Christ having slain its power to condemn us and its power to rule us.  Because we have believed in Christ and become His disciples, we are to reckon ourselves as dead unto sin.  Whether we feel internally all the glorious things that have happened to us or not (and often we do not), we are to recollect and remember the basic facts of the Gospel, which Paul has been enumerating, and to conduct ourselves accordingly.

I should be very glad to know what is the state of your soul.  Is it not tired of its own righteousness?  Does it not breathe freely at last, and does it not confide in the righteousness of Christ?  In our days, pride seduces many, and especially those who labour with all their might to become righteous.  Not understanding the righteousness of God that is given to us freely in Christ Jesus, they wish to stand before Him on their own merits.  But that cannot be.  When you were living with me, you were in that error, and so was I.  I am yet struggling unceasingly against it, and I have not yet entirely triumphed over it.


Oh, my dear brother, learn to know Christ, and Him crucified.  Learn to sing unto Him a new song, to despair of yourself, and to say to Him: Thou, Lord Jesus CHrist, art my righteousness, and I am Thy sin.  Thou hast taken what was mine, and hast given me what was Thine.  What Thou wast not, Thou didst become, in order that I might become what I was not!-Beware, my dear George, of pretending to such purity as no longer to confess yourself a sinner: for Christ dwells only with sinners.  He came down from heaven, where He was living among the righteous, in order to live also among sinners.  Meditate carefully upon this love of Christ, and you will taste all its unspeakable consolation.  If our labours and afflictions could give peace to the conscience, why should Christ have died?  You will not find peace, save in Him, by despairing of yourself and of your works, and in learning with what love He opens His arms to you, taking all your sins upon Himself, and giving thee all His righteousness.