Radio Broadcast Monday 02/10/2020

Classic Christianity – Book of Romans P40 (02-10-20)

Synopsis

Listen as Bob summarizes what the apostle Paul proclaimed to both Jew and Gentile alike, the righteousness that is received by faith and faith alone in what Christ accomplished for you, by his death, burial and resurrection. It has never been by works of the law, of how well you kept the ten commandments. It is an impossibility for the Jew, who were given the law, and all the prophets, and for us, the Gentiles, who never had the law, but stole the law from the Jews, and tried to do what the Jews did, and failed miserably. The real issue is that we were all born dead, whether Jew or Gentile, without the Spirit of God, and we are in need of life.

Trying to work to gain acceptance with God is like trying to jump across the Grand Canyon to get to the other side. It cannot be done. Or, it is like trying your hardest in getting the acceptance from your father by what you do. It seems the harder you work, the more you get rejected. The fact is, we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. There is no one who will be declared righteous before God by observing the law. It is through the law we become conscious of sin. The righteousness we need must come from God, and can only come from God, and is imputed to us by faith. He is the only one who has life to give for he is the only one who could die, and did, to take away our sins, and the only one who was raised so that the life that raised him from the dead, could raise you from the dead also, if you simply put your complete trust in Him. There is no other name under heaven by which men can be saved except through Christ Jesus our Lord.

Mankind is created different than the animal kingdom. Mankind was designed to be created with the Spirit of God living in him. When that Spirit is missing in man, is the reason man asks questions like, “Where am I going?”, “Why am I here?” and “What is the meaning and purpose to life?” All these questions comes from a man who has a God-shaped vacuum that is longing to be filled. The lost person knows he is empty inside. He walks through this life in a vacuum, wanting to know something he does not know. He just knows something is missing. He does not know what is missing but he knows something is missing. He goes through life like that.

There is a need of the human spirit, not of the soul, where the mind, will and emotions are. Yet man thinks it is a soulish need, so he tries to get the needs of unconditional love and acceptance from others, from a spouse or children. Or, he tries to get significance to life by what he does. So he thinks that if he loves others, then they will love him back. Did Jesus love others? Yes, and perfectly. Did everyone love him back? No. The results are always in the hands of God. We cannot produce results. We live by abiding in Christ, resting in Him. And we can only rest in Him when the Holy Spirit has first been placed in us. That occurred the moment you come to Christ by faith, and receive the gift of eternal life. This is eternal life, to know God and His Son, Jesus Christ. In Christ alone is where all your hearts desires, the desires of unconditional love and acceptance, of meaning and purpose, are fulfilled. You are truly made complete in Christ. Nothing man does will ever meet the need of his spirit. His spirit must be joined with God’s Spirit to be made complete. God in the man is indispensable to the proper functioning of the man.

 

Transcript

To those who are visiting, I got a kick out of the comment. A lot of times people think they are coming into a banquet of some kind but we just do not have any real food, just spiritual food. We decided a long time ago to do this format, which is different than any other church you would go to. The reason for it is because it literally requires you to fellowship with people. It requires you to sit around the table and visit with one another. It is not to come just to sit and soak, but to be able to meet one another. In the final analysis, it is your friends who are going to sustain you through the relationship they have with the Lord. That is the reason we do this. I hope you feel comfortable here and come back and see us whenever you can.

Let us turn together to the book of Romans. We have discussed how Paul was dealing with the Jew and the Gentile issue. Just as a matter of review, we have to put ourselves back to that place where they were then, where the only real voice on the face of the earth, proclaiming the one true God were the Jews. They were proclaiming the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. They did not know who that was. If you were to ask a Jew back then who was their God, they would say the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. That was as good as any that anybody knew.

To the entire rest of the world, the heathenistic world, which would also be the Arab world, as we see that conflict taking place today, between the Jew and the Arabs, that is the Gentile world. The Arabs are the Gentiles and you have the Jews. From God’s vantage point, there are only three categories of people on the face of the earth, the Jew and the Gentile and then the Ekklesia, the called out ones, the born again people, made up of the born again Jews and the born again Gentiles. This was the mystery (Ephesians 3:4-6) that God had in his heart since the beginning of the world, to create a new man out of the two (Ephesians 2:14-16).

Ephesians 2:14-16
14 For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, 15 by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, 16 and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.

Ephesians 3:4-6
4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.

When you read in the book of Ephesians and in the book of Romans, dealing with predestination and with election, it is not the you’s and the me’s, it is the Jews and the Gentiles, that God predestined the Gentile world would hear the same gospel the Jew would hear, and that the Gentile would come to Christ the same way the Jews would come to Christ, not through their works, but through faith in Christ Jesus alone. So He neutralized the Jews with the law.

Ephesians 1:4-6
In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will – 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.

Romans 8:29-30
29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.

Now the Gentiles never had the law. Again, it is for us to get into our minds, that we, Gentiles, were never given the law by God. We just went over and stole it. He never gave it to us. The law was given to the Jews when they left Egypt, to keep them from killing themselves. He gave the law to the Jews not to create righteousness, but to create some sort of an ability for them to live together in righteousness, but it was not to create righteousness. The Jews took the law, that God gave to them to keep them out of total chaos, and made into a means of righteousness.

Galatians 2:21
21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”

Paul had to come in after his conversion and straighten all this out, in the book of Romans, Galatians, and Philippians, and all the books he wrote. He explained to us what righteousness is.

Romans 3:20
20 Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin.

No man will be declared righteous in God’s sight through obedience to the law. That is no man. No Jew will ever be declared righteous in the sight of God through obedience to the law. And you Gentile, who stole the law from the Jews, will also not be declared righteous in the sight of God through obedience to the law. Righteousness is going to be imputed to you by God alone.

Romans 4:24-25 (KJV)
24 But for us also, to whom it [righteousness] 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.

The only righteousness you and I will ever stand in is His. We are clothed in His righteoness.

Galatians 3:26-28
26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

So none of us are going to stand in the presence of God, saying “Look at me, God”. You say, “You love me, God, and I do too because I am so good and so wonderful.” God, in Christ, is convincing you, saying to you, “No, you are not”. We would not have any righteousness at all if it were not for righteousness imputed to us by Christ Jesus.

1 Corinthians 1:30
30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God – that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.

He has become for us our everything. Apart from Christ we can do nothing. Absolutely nothing.

John 15:5
5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

So we had this conflict between the Jew and the Gentile. To the Jew, who thought they are God’s chosen people, because they have the laws and the prophets and all these things. As Paul explains that yes that is true, but they do not have righteousness apart from Christ.

Romans 9:1-5
1 I speak the truth in Christ – I am not lying, my conscience confirms it through the Holy Spirit – 2 I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people, those of my own race, 4 the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption to sonship; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. 5 Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen.

To the Gentile world, we were heathenistic. Our roots are heathenistic, idol worshiping heathens. Did Jesus not refer to the Gentiles as dogs?

Mark 7:25-30
25 In fact, as soon as she heard about him, a woman whose little daughter was possessed by an impure spirit came and fell at his feet. 26 The woman was a Greek, born in Syrian Phoenicia. She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter.

27 #8220;First let the children eat all they want,#8221; he told her, #8220;it is not right to take the children#8217;s bread and toss it to the dogs.#8221;

28 #8220;Lord,#8221; she replied, #8220;even the dogs under the table eat the children#8217;s crumbs.#8221;

29 Then he told her, #8220;For such a reply, you may go; the demon has left your daughter.#8221;

30 She went home and found her child lying on the bed, and the demon gone.

Now, that is quite insulting to us to be called a dog by Jesus. But that is what he said. He gives the crumbs to the dogs. So we do not need to be walking around thinking so highly of ourselves. If you do not think you do, when you look at the church directory, what picture do you go pick out first of all? At any rate, that is the Jew. The gospel went to the Gentile. That is the mystery, that God will belong to the Gentile the same way as the Jew. That was unthinkable to the Jew. The Gentile grabbed a hold of the gospel and the gospel started to spread to all the Gentile world. Then, we Gentiles, got all cocky: #8220;See, those Jews over there and they do not accept it.#8221; So they got all puffed up, and Paul had to address both of these cases in the book of Romans. To the Gentiles, he said, #8220;do not get all puffed up. He could get rid of you too.#8221; To the Jew, he said, #8220;Do not get puffed up. Yes, you did have the law and the prophets but you did not have salvation until you came to Jesus Christ.#8221;

Romans 11:13-21
13 I am talking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch as I am the apostle to the Gentiles, I take pride in my ministry 14 in the hope that I may somehow arouse my own people to envy and save some of them. 15 For if their rejection brought reconciliation to the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead? 16 If the part of the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, then the whole batch is holy; if the root is holy, so are the branches.

17 If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root, 18 do not consider yourself to be superior to those other branches. If you do, consider this: You do not support the root, but the root supports you. 19 You will say then, #8220;Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in.#8221; 20 Granted. But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but tremble. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either.

Romans 3:21-24
21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus

So he neutralized the whole world and said #8220;you are all dead#8221;. That is where the fairness comes in with God. What do I need to do to be saved? There are some people who think that is good works. How many good works would you have to do? How many good works would you have to do? How many bad works would you have to do before you were not saved? How many bad works, or bad things, would you have to do before you would never be acceptable to get into the kingdom of God? How many good works would you have to do in order to be acceptable? And what if you just missed it by one? Think about such things.

Law And Grace

I thought God graded on a curve all my life and just hoped I was on the other, or right, side of the curve. The problem is when you get old enough to realize you missed the mark. I do not think I can live long enough to outlive these other things I have done. We realize the fairness of God, that the consequence of sin is death.

Romans 6:23
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

All of us have been reduced to the position of spiritual death and in need of life. The only life available to us is Christ Jesus our Lord. Buddha cannot give you life. Mohammad cannot give you life. The pope cannot give you life. Luther cannot give you life. People to People cannot give you life. Only Christ Jesus can give you life from the dead. The whole emphasis of the New Testament, in salvation, is in regard to life and death. Jesus said, #8220;I came so you might have life.#8221; Why? You are dead.

John 11:24-25
24 Martha answered, #8220;I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.#8221;

25 Jesus said to her, #8220;I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?#8221;

The whole issue of salvation is death and life. Yet, we have reduced salvation to forgiveness only. That is why we concentrate on the cross, and absolutely forget about the resurrection, despite the fact that Paul said without the resurrection we are to be pitied of all people and are still in our sins, knowing full well that a cross occurred.

1 Corinthiaqns 15:16-22
16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.

20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

You are still in your sins apart from the resurrection. Why? Resurrection is where that forgiveness that is provided is received. As I mentioned before, that it is like me saying to you as in this story, or parable.

I put a million dollars in your bank, and I also made arrangements that anything you spend, it is replenished, so it is always a million. So you say, “Where is that money?” It is in the First International Bank of Dallas. “I do not like that bank. Can I get it in Bank One?” No, it not available at Bank One. “Can I get it in the ATM machine?” No, it is not available at the ATM. “Where can I get the money?” The First International Bank of Dallas. “Well, I am not going to that bank.” Do you know what you are going to do? You are going to die in your poverty. Even though you have a million dollars in your bank account, you will die in your poverty because you refused to go where your money is located.

It is the same thing with salvation. Salvation is in Christ Jesus.

Acts 4:12
12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.

If you want salvation, you have to go to Jesus. People say, “I do not want to go to Jesus.” Then you are not going to be saved. It is that simple. It is not that you are dogmatic. It is practical. There is only one person who can give life to the dead. That is the resurrected Christ. Who do you have your faith in? Someone who has been raised from the dead or someone who hasn’t? In Christ Jesus, that is the meaning of the resurrection.

It is so discouraging to me, to hear the lost not come to Christ when the gospel is explained. Amy and I go to many places and we come in contact with people, all the time, who are not saved. When you go on vacation, you are around lost people. These people are really lost. These people are lost, lost, lost. You can talk to them, but it is like talking to a wall. I am very serious on that. I say, “When are you going to come to your senses?”

When I went back to my 50th high school reunion. That was not mine. I was a lot younger than that, but I just went back to it. (laughter) But these high school people made the mistake of asking me to be the MC of the banquet. They knew that I did but they did not know what I was going to do. I went back and said the funny stuff, but then, at the end of it, I said very seriously, “We are at the very end of our life. When you celebrate your 50th year of your high school graduation, you are on your way down and you are on your way out, and there are not many years left. A lot of people I graduated with are dead today. So what I am here today is to tell you how you can have eternal life. You are going to go home and all these fun and games are going to go by the wayside, but what you do with what you hear today will determine where you spend eternity, whether you spend it in hell or in heaven. The most loving thing I can do for you is to tell you how you can have eternal life. Some of you might not like it, but I am going to tell you anyway.” I told them and I was right and some of them did not like it. But they will never stand before God saying “I never heard it”. They will never be able to stand before God and say “I never heard the gospel.”

Does not everybody want to have Jesus? The answer is no. Why? I do not know. I do not know the answer to that, outside the fact that God has said He gives grace to the humble and resists the proud. The only people who are not going to accept Christ are the proud, those that say, “I do not need Him. I am good enough.”

John 5:39-40
39 You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, 40 yet you refuse to come to me to have life.

Romans 10:3
3 Since they did not know the righteousness of God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness.

James 4:6
6 But he gives more grace. Wherefore he said, God resists the proud, but gives grace unto the humble.

There are a lot of people who live that way. I heard a person say to me one time, “I could never commit murder.” Well, then you only need a 90% Jesus. And if you could never commit murder and you could never commit adultery, then you would only need an 80% Jesus. Then you just might think you could be good enough that you think you would not need Him at all. That is what people do. They have this theology of just a little dab will do you. They say, “I just need a little dab of Jesus and that will do it.” No, you don’t. You need a 100% Jesus.

There is not one thing in the ten commandments that we are not capable of committing, not a one. The issue is is that we have to realize that. Jesus came when he was here on earth to amplify that truth. He amplified the law.

Matthew 5:27-28
27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’[Exodus 20:14] 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

All the men say “I have had it.” Yes. All the women say, “I have had it, too. For you are fantasizing.”

1 John 3:15
15 Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.

The bible says do no commit murder (Exodus 20:13). Jesus said, “But I say to you that if you get angry at somebody, you already committed murder in your heart.” How many of us have gone through life without getting angry at somebody? If you are capable of getting angry, you are capable of murdering. That should not be discouraging to us. That ought to tell us truth. That is what Jesus came to do. He came to prepare us for what he came to do. He came to take away the sins of the world and give life to the dead. If I do not see I am dead, then what do I need with His life? If I do not see I am a sinner, then why would I need His forgiveness?

John 10:16-18
16 “I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17 The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life – only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

Now, this whole Mel Gibson film that everybody went to see. People are talking about the Jews being offended, for the Jews killed Jesus. I killed Jesus. I am not a Jew. My sins killed Jesus. He died for the sins of the world, both Jews sins and Gentiles sins. Do you think the Jews were behind the death of Jesus? Absolutely. Paul said they killed him. They were the instigators behind the death of Jesus? Who carried out the execution? The Romans. That means we are all guilty (Matthew 20:19).

1 Corinthians 2:8
8 None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

Matthew 28:18-19
18 “We are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death 19 and will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified. On the third day he will be raised to life!”

2 Corinthians 5:21
21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

If you are going to get angry because Mel Gibson has a dramatic film on the fact, showing how Jesus died and who was instigating and killing him, then quit showing movies about the Holocaust because that is an offense to me because I am a Gentile, and you are talking about Hitler, for he is a Gentile, and that makes me feel bad as a Gentile. That is nonsense. We have to understand that is nonsense. But that is how people are, so sensitive about these things. I do not care what Hitler did. I had nothing to do with Hitler. Just because the Jewish leaders, back in those days, instigated the death of Jesus, that does not mean that if you are a Jew today, that you are a part of that. There are a lot of people who feel that way. People are so scared to death that there will be a retaliation against the Jewish people because of the film. So why is there not a retaliation against the Gentiles because of films about Hitler? It is time for us to sit back and to start thinking, to use our minds God gave us to think these things through. Praise God there is a film that has come out, that is going to depict the death of Jesus as it is. He was beaten as no man, and tortured as no man.

Isaiah 52:3-15
13 See, my servant will act wisely;
he will be raised and lifted up and highly exalted.
14 Just as there were many who were appalled at him –
his appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any human being
and his form marred beyond human likeness –
15 so he will sprinkle many nations,
and kings will shut their mouths because of him.
For what they were not told, they will see,
and what they have not heard, they will understand.

Let us turn now to the book of Romans.

Romans 9:30
30 What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith;

So you are saying the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, got it? Yes, you got it. Why is that so? They received a righteousness that is by faith.

Romans 9:31
31 but the people of Israel, who pursued the law as the way of righteousness, have not attained their goal.

Yes, you got it.

Romans 9:32
32 Why not?

Now, is that not a logical question? Why haven’t we, Jews, who have been trying to be righteous, why have we not obtained righteousness, when these Gentiles over here have not been trying at all? And you say they have obtained righteousness? Does that sound fair? It does not sound fair. Someone says, “I am trying.” You cannot obey the law. “I know but I am trying.” That is like trying to jump over a hundred foot crevice. You are not going to make it. It makes no difference if you get two inches to the other side or you trip as you jump. You are not going to make it. Trying is not the issue.

The issue is, do you want to stand in the presence of God righteous? You are not going to stand in front of a righteous God unless you are righteous. So how many of you want to be righteous? How many of you are going to get it on your own? Nobody. You are going to have to stand clothed in the righteousness of Christ Jesus. The Jews are saying, “We are working at it.” They are not. Yes, you say you are working at it, but you did not get it. You failed. We have all failed. We all sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God, have we not?

Romans 3:23
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God

They have not obtained it. Why not?

Romans 9:32
Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works.

They were trying to work their way for acceptance in God. Think about this for a moment in relationships. If you have to work at being accepted, how many of you have tried to work at being accepted, by your parents or by your mate? Does it work? No. It seems the harder you work, the more you get rejected. You cannot work at acceptance. Do you love one another? Is that a sign that someone is going to love you back? Did Jesus love people? Yes. Did they all love him back? No. So when we love people, will they all love you back? If you go out and do something nice for somebody, are they going to say, “Oh, that is good. I will do something nice to you.”? Some might but others don’t.

So you have to keep your eyes off the results. The results are always in the hands of God. You can never produce the results. I can make a decision to help somebody or be nice to somebody. But what are the results of that going to be? That is up to God. I do not control that. Sometimes I like the results and sometimes I don’t. Don’t you? So he is saying to us that it does not matter how hard you are working, it is not going to work.

Romans 9:32
They stumbled over the stumbling stone.

Who is the stumbling stone? Jesus. They stumbled over him. They did not want to think that there is a man that you can come to that will provide for me everything my heart has ever wanted. Every desire of my heart has been met in Christ Jesus. It cannot be met in my wife. It cannot be met in my children. It cannot be met in you. It has to be met in Christ Jesus. Every man has an insatiable desire to be loved unconditionally, to be accepted unconditionally, and to have meaning and purpose to your life. Every person sitting in this room has an insatiable desire for that, to be loved and accepted unconditionally. Will someone just accept me for who I am and to have meaning and purpose to life? Why do I get up in the morning? Am I right or wrong?

Here is the catch. Satan comes along and says, “that is a need of your soul”, what you got from mom and dad. Satan says, “You can get that from people, places and things.” So we get married. And we think, “She will provide unconditional love for me.” Is that true? I am not talking about my wife. I am talking about yours. (laughter) “Oh, my husband will accept me unconditionally. And when I get married I will have meaning and purpose to life. If I would just get married, I will have meaning and purpose to life.” I had some people sitting in my office, saying “If I could just get married, I would be the happiest person alive.” Then I have the next person come in, saying, “If I could just get divorced, I would be the happiest person alive.” You feel like saying, “I would like to get you two guys together.” (laughter).

Folks, the desires we have to have meaning and purpose to life, and to have the need of unconditional love and acceptance, is not a need of the soul. It is a need of the spirit. What separates the human kingdom from the animal kingdom is the fact that the dog has a soul. Your soul is your internal personality with your mind, will and emotions. The dog has a will. It has a mind, and that is debatable. And they have emotion. You see their tails wag when they are happy. But they do not have a spirit. A dog is not sitting around contemplating God. A dog does not have a God-shaped vacuum in his heart. Man does. That is his human spirit. There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every man that can only be filled through Jesus Christ.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 (TLB)
11 Everything is appropriate in its own time. But though God has planted eternity in the hearts of men, even so, many cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.

You walk through this life in a vacuum, a desire to know something you do not know. You just know something is missing. You do not know what is missing, but you know something is missing. You go through life like that.

At the age of 36, I accepted Jesus and everything was fulfilled. I think to myself, “I could have done that at age 6. Why do I have to wait until I was 36?” It is like God said to me: “So you can have compassion on those who are lost.” The things that happen to us is so that when we receive the comfort from God, we can pass that same comfort on to others that we received from God.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

That is a need that cannot be met through the soul. It is a spiritual need. Your need of unconditonal love and acceptance and meaning and purpose to life is a need that can only be met in Christ Jesus, period. That cannot be met out here. We need to understand that.

Hebrews 4:12
12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

We do not need to argue about whether there is a difference between soul and spirit. There is a difference. The spiritual aspect has needs just like your soul has needs and your body has needs, and if they are not met, you will die. So, too, your spirit has needs. You have a need to be accepted unconditionally. And you have a need to have meaning and purpose to life.

John 10:10
10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

Satan comes along and says that you can get those needs met out here. God says, “no, you can’t.“ You see, when I do not understand that that need of unconditional love and acceptance cannot be met in my wife or my children, I am unfulfilled, burdened or heavy laden. It can only be met in God. If I do not understand that, we become like tics on a dog in marriage, sucking the life out of each other, trying to get our mate to meet those needs. I got a need of unconditional love. My wife says “I can’t meet that need.“ I got a need to be loved unconditionally and accepted. Will you just accept me the way I am? “No, it cannot be done.” Can you give me meaning and purpose to life? “Well, go in the ministry. That will give you meaning and purpose to life.“ No, that will give you headaches, but it will not give you meaning and purpose to life.

There is only one person who will give you meaning and purpose to life, and that is Jesus. Until you have come to rest in Him. I am talking about abiding, about resting in Him. You have come to Him saying, “Lord, there is no one else that can give me unconditional love, unconditional acceptance and meaning and purpose to life except you and you alone. I am getting rid of these concepts that somebody else can do it. That my wife or husband or children can do it. I am getting rid of that. It is not true. It is an unrealistic expectation. I am out depending on you and you alone to bring to me the needs of my heart. The basic needs of my heart are met in you.”

Romans 9:33
33 As it is written:

“See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes people to stumble
and a rock that makes them fall,
and the one who believes in him will never be put to shame.”[Isaiah 8:14; 28:16]

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