Theological dementia and The two ways that people die

3 points from an R C Sproul Easter message, see full notes below:

We live in a world of not just foolishness, but theological dementia. People actually out there believe that their sins will be covered by this vague amorphous love of God who forgives everybody. If you don’t repent, I don’t care how loving God is, He will not forgive you. Not now, not ever. Sin is so much more of an offense against a Holy God than any of us ever imagine. 

In the Bible when is speaks of people dying, it describes only two ways in which people ever die. People either die in faith or they die in their sins. There are people here today (in church), as a matter of custom, or family pressure that have no faith. You’re still in your sin and if you would die today, you would die in your sin and you would perish without hope.

Are you sexually immoral?  Are you addicted to pornography? If you don’t flee from it, you’ll take it with you to the lake of fire. Are you living with a man or a woman who is not your wife?, outside of the bounds of marriage? You can celebrate that relationship in hell. The culture applauds it, but the Lord God almighty can’t stomach it. And in every church in America there are those who have eschewed marriage to live together without any word of discipline from the church. I say to you this day: If you’re in such a relationship, get out of it before the sun sets today. You’re defying the holiness of God and He will not tolerate it for a long time. Are you a liar? Can people trust your word? Is deceit and dissembling part of your conduct? This is why some people hope that the resurrection didn’t happen. Because if Christ is not raised I don’t have to worry about a lake of fire. When I’m dead, I’ll be dead. There’ll be no judgement. I will have gotten away with it all. 

R.C.Sproul full message:

In Paul’s letter to the Corinthians in the 15th chapter, where the apostle Paul addresses the skeptics that had invaded the church a Corinth. People that were denying the reality of the resurrection of Jesus, but wanted to reconstruct the church to make it more politically correct, more relevant to the needs of the people of that day, so they wanted a christianity without resurrection, with our the supernatural. They wanted a christianity based solely upon their appreciation and admiration for the profundity of the ethical teachings of rabbi Jesus.

And so, the apostle Paul wrote to the church at Corinth and said to them, „Have you really considered the implications of your thinking? In his discussion, by way of this letter, he employed a technique that had been made famous by philosophers before Socrates which was the technique of arguing in an ad hominem fashion, not the ad hominem abusive, fallacious manner of arguing, where you try to refute your opponent by insulting his character. That’s the fallacious kind. But, the simple ad hominem argument was to argue to the person, that is, you listen to the statements and the premises that your opponent is making, you repeat them, then you step into the shoes of your opponent and say, „Okay, if your premise is correct, what is your logical implications of it? Let’s track them and see where it takes us. And so they would use that technique called reductio ad absurdum, where they would reason from their opponent’s premise and showed that if you are consistent with your premise it will lead you ultimately to absurdity.

Paul was a master at that. So when he writes to the Corinthians he says this, „If Christ is preached and He has been raised from the dead, how is it that some among you say there is no resurrection of the dead? Well, if there is no resurrection from the dead”, Paul is saying, „what are the implications for that?” Well if there’s no resurrection at all of any kind, of anyone, then that would clearly exclude any hope of the resurrection of a single person like Jesus. If there’s absolutely no life after death, if no one comes out of the tomb, then manifestly that would mean that Jesus is still dead and that He has not been resurrected. Wel, then what? If Christ is not risen then our preaching is empty, it is futile, it has no meaningful content. It is meaningless. And, if our preaching is nothing but a void, then your faith is empty and meaningless. Your faith is an exercise in delusion. Not only that, but we would be found to be false witnesses of God because we’ve testified that it was God who raised up Christ. If Christ is not raised, obviously God did not raise Him and if God did not raise Him we have been liars by telling the world that indeed God did raise Him from the dead.  And again, if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile. You’re still in your sins. You still carry the weight of guilt around your neck.

In the Bible when is speaks of people dying, it describes only two ways in which people ever die. People either die in faith or they die in their sins. There are people here today (in church), as a matter of custom, or family pressure that have no faith. You’re still in your sin and if you would die today, you would die in your sin and you would perish without hope. Well, what would be true for the unbeliever would be true as well for the believer. If Christ is not raised we would be unjustified. But the Bible says, „He was raised for our justification”. He was raised because the Father said, „YES!,” to the atonement, because He said  „YES!,” to His work of reconciliation. But if the Father had rejected the sacrificial offering of Christ on the cross we would have no Savior. We would have no relief, no forgiveness of our sins.

We live in a world of not just foolishness, but theological dementia. People actually out there believe that their sins will be covered by this vague amorphous love of God who forgives everybody. If you don’t repent, I don’t care how loving God is, He will not forgive you. Not now, not ever. Sin is so much more of an offense against a Holy God than any of us ever imagine.

If Christ is not raised, you’re still there in your sin. If Christ is not risen, then those who have fallen asleep in him have perished. Someone once said to me, „When you die and go to heaven, write down the 10 people that you most want to see there”.  And of course, the first one was Jesus, naturally. Oh yes, I wanna see Paul, yes I wanna see David, and yes I wanna see the rest of the apostles. But after Jesus, the next name on my list was my father. I wanna see him again. I wanna see my mother again. And there are those in this congregation who yearn to see their husbands again, or their wives again, or their children again.

Paul says, let’s face it. Let’s be realistic. If Christ is not raised, why do you amuse yourself with thoughts that you’re ever going to see your loved ones again? Because you won’t. When you’re dead, you’re dead. And if you die with the most toys, you win. What nonsense. Is there anything more precious to you than life? Is there anything more significant to you than eternal life? Than resurrection from the dead? And Paul says,”If He’s not risen, they’re all gone. They’re all dead. Forget it”. And we are of all people the most to be pitied.

Then Paul goes on to say, „I don’t want you to believe in the resurrection because the options are too grim too imagine. I’m just showing you where you are going if you deny the resurrection, but, now is Christ raised from the dead! And he was seen by the apostles, by Peter, and John, and 500 people at one time and He appeared unto me. I am not writing you myths and fables. Why do you think my life is on the line every day? Why do you think I fought with the wild beasts at Ephesus? Why do you think I spent so much time in jail? Why do you think I spent so much time in shipwreck? And in beatings?

It’s because I saw Him! And I know that He is alive! I know that my Redeemer lives!

Fast forward. Beyond the writings of Paul to the apostle John. Jesus is raised from the dead! So what? Here’s what: We will have a new heaven, a new earth, a new Jerusalem. That New jerusalem is going to come down from the heavens and when we look at it it will look like a fantastically adorned bride on her wedding day. More beautiful than a princess or a queen. And John said, „I heard a voice and it said: Behold, the tabernacle of God, the tent of God is with men and He will dwell with them.

Emanuel. Jesus will be in our midst again. And God will wipe away every tear. You’ve no use for tears because John says there won’t be anything more to cry about. There will be no more death, there aren’t any funeral services in the New Jerusalem. There aren’t any cemeteries in the Holy City. There will be no more sorrow, no more crying, no more pain. Those belong to the old order which are passing away. „And behold,” God said, „I will make all things new!” And He said to me the same words He uttered from the cross, „It’s finished. It’s done. I am Alpha and I am Omega. I am the beginning and I am the end. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts and he who overcomes shall inherit all things and I shall be his God and he shall be my son”. Incredibly good, nay, great news!

Sadly, however, even here in the announcement of the ending of death and pain and sorrow and tears for those who belong to Christ, the announcement doesn’t end there. There is a however. As John, quoting Jesus, says, „But, the cowardly, the unbelieving, the abominable, the murderers, the sexually immoral, the sorcerers, idolaters and liars, do you see this list? Did you see the things that are contained in there? Murderers next to the unbelievers? Here’s what Jesus says, „The cowardly, the unbelieving, the abominable, the murderers, the sexually immoral, the sorcerers, idolater and liar will go into the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.

Are you sexually immoral?  Are you addicted to pornography? If you don’t flee from it, you’ll take it with you to the lake of fire. Are you living with a man or a woman who is not your wife?, outside of the bounds of marriage? You can celebrate that relationship in hell. The culture applauds it, but the Lord God almighty can’t stomach it. And in every church in America there are those who have eschewed marriage to live together without any word of discipline from the church. I say to you this day: If you’re in such a relationship, get out of it before the sun sets today. You’re defying the holiness of God and He will not tolerate it for a long time. Are you a liar? Can people trust your word? Is deceit and dissembling part of your conduct? This is why some people hope that the resurrection didn’t happen. Because if Christ is not raised I don’t have to worry about a lake of fire. When I’m dead, I’ll be dead. There’ll be no judgement. I will have gotten away with it all.

I don’t wanna end the sermon on Easter in the lake of fire. That’s no  place to swim on this day. I wanna look to the New Jerusalem, where our Lord Jesus has gone, to His Father’s house in which He tells us are many mansions. And He is gone to prepare a place for me and for you and all who put their trust in Him. So what? So what! So, everything! You know why? You know what I’m going to say: He is risen!

Blogosfera Evanghelică

Vizite unicate din Martie 6,2011

free counters

Va multumim ca ne-ati vizitat azi!


România – LIVE webcams de la orase mari