None of us, as individuals or as local churches, has arrived. We all have need of continual repentance and reformation, knowing that sin easily entangles us and we all have different blind spot and unexamined presuppositions.
This sermon addresses three basic areas where men tend to go astray and exhorts all to repent and follow after Christ as revealed in the Scripture.
Voddie Baucham presents “The Reformation We Need” at the 2013 Founders Breakfast in Houston last month.
I found a gem on justification, written by J.I. Packer, that can be found here:
Let me quote from it:
God’s justifying judgment seems strange, for pronouncing sinners righteous may appear to be precisely the unjust action on the judge’s part that God’s own law forbade (Deut. 25:1; Prov. 17:15). Yet it is in fact a just judgment, for its basis is the righteousness of Jesus Christ who as “the last Adam” (1 Cor. 15:45), our representative head acting on our behalf, obeyed the law that bound us and endured the retribution for lawlessness that was our due and so (to use a medieval technical term) “merited” our justification. So we are justified justly, on the basis of justice done (Rom. 3:25-26) and Christ’s righteousness reckoned to our account (Rom. 5:18-19).
The argument, in summary, is this: If God is just, how can He declare someone that is sinful to be righteous? Answer: Because the righteousness that God sees when he looks at the elect sinner is the righteousness of Christ. In other words, God does not nilly willy and “in a vacuum” declare something sinful to be holy. That would indeed be an unjust declaration. However, if in Christ we are righteous, because He is our “Adam,” that is, our spiritual representative and head, then it would be unjust for God to NOT declare us justified. See the logic there? According to God’s own consistency, since Jesus is our righteousness, God justifies the elect.
The justifying action of God is not an exception to his otherwise perfect justice. On the contrary, the action is an application of God’s perfect justice. This is the magnificence of the cross. The cross verified and guaranteed the justifying salvation to all who were of the elect sons and daughters of Christ, the new and perfect Adam.
If you are not familiar with Matthew Vines, he is a pro homosexual activist who spoke at College Hill United Methodist Church in Kansas. During that speech, Mr. Vines advocated that the Bible does not condemn same sex monogamous relationships. Mr. Vines went to great lengths to redefine the very meaning of scripture as he attempted to explain what God actually meant, by his own assessment, when He inspired the writers of the Bible to pen the words we read today. Unlike many who have taken Christians to task on this issue, Mr. Vines presents himself as a kind and polite person, one with whom you would like to sit down and have a conversation with. He does not attempt to make the vitriolic speech that many who have advocated “gay rights” have used. His demeanor makes his redefining of scripture more acceptable in the eyes of those who have not made the effort to understand what God has truly said on the matter of homosexuality. As a result, Mr. Vines, and the views he espouses, are more easily received, even by those to claim to be followers of Jesus Christ.
Last year I posted an article titled “Christians Are We Ready” where I referenced a series of audio messages prepared by Dr. James White addressing this very speech by Matthew Vines. I continue to heartily recommend those messages to every Christian as they directly dismantle the very arguments made by Mr. Vines. Now I would like to refer our readers to yet another resource that will further equip us. CARM has prepared a section on their apologetics site that continues to expound on this issue. Homosexuality is one of the defining arguments of our day. Christians must be prepared to answer the challenges presented by those who would promote their belief that sexual immorality is acceptable in the eyes of God. Therefore, I ask you to visit the following link at CARM and become equipped to answer when people ask you why you believe homosexuality is a sin. Let us be fully prepared, not so we can prove ourselves morally better, but so that we can graciously and compassionately warn those of the judgment to come for their sin, and that there is yet salvation in Jesus Christ.
The following video was posted by my good friend Tony Miano. He has been maintaining a video log of his participation in the evangelism outreach going on at the Wimbledon games in the UK. The reason I am sharing this is I am asking our readers to be aware of what is currently going in Europe, for you can be sure that one day it will be happening here. The question is Christians, are you ready for this? When the time comes, and it is coming, are you prepared to be persecuted for your faith?
UPDATE: The video of Tony’ s open air sermon is now available to view.
SECOND UPDATE: The transcripts of Tony’ s interrogation have been available. It can be read at the Cross Encounters blog at the following link:
In addition to blogging and co-hosting a radio program, I also maintain a YouTube account. I have recently begun posting new video blogs there that I wish to share with our readers. In the past, my video efforts were more in the area of highlighting the need for biblical evangelism so as to encourage other brethren to preach the gospel to the lost. However, more recently I have felt burdened to produce videos that encourage and edify the body of Christ to be serious about our faith. It is my conviction that we as Christians need to delve deeper into the Word of God because it is the only source of truth, the only thing that can truly answer the problems we face today. To that end, I have posted two videos (which are linked below) that I hope and pray glorify God and equip the brethren. It is my intent to produce similar videos in the weeks to come. I ask you to consider watching and sharing these videos with other Christians. I also welcome questions and suggestions for future videos. If you have any thoughts on what else you would like to see covered, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Does God love you and have a wonderful plan for your life? Have you heard preachers declare this and then leave you wondering how on Earth are you supposed to determine what that wonderful plan is? Does the almighty creator and ruler of all things have one person you are to fall in love with and marry? Is there one job and place you are seek and find? I submit that God does have a wonderful plan for your life – and it’s the same as His plan for me and every other Christian: to conform us ever more to the image of Christ. As for these other pieces of life on this temporary planet which is not our home, we’ll discuss a little, later, to see how they fit in.
Listen to the message here.