Radio Broadcast Monday 10/25/2021

Classic Christianity – A Closer Look at The Finality of The Cross P34 (10-25-21)

Have You Understood the Finality of the Cross: Are You a Follower Of Christ but Not Born Again? Are You a Professor or a Possessor of Christ?

I once heard someone born in England once say that anyone born in America is a Christian. Some people think that if you go to church then you are a Christian? What do people really mean when they ask if you are a Christian? Are they really just asking to see if you are a good person, towing the line of expectations of men? That you go to a denomination that they approve as the one true church? I have heard Mormons say they are Christians too? I have heard Catholics say they are Christians too? Regardless of the denomination, sitting in a church does not make you a Christian any more than sitting in a hen house makes you a chicken. And who is Jesus to you? Is he merely a political leader? Is he just a prophet like other prophets? Was he just a good and noble man who was martyred for a just cause? Is he just a mere man, a man who became God, or is He really who He claimed to be, God in the flesh? And knowing that He is the Son of God, what does that mean to you personally?

Some people even say they are a follower of Christ. What does that mean? Judas Iscariot was a follower of Christ and even went out witnessing, going out two by two along with the other disciples of Jesus to cast out demons in the name of Jesus (Mark 6:7, Matthew 7:22-23), yet Jesus said to him that it would better for him if he was never born (Mark 14:21). Judas, like so many people today, may say they follow Christ, hanging out with others who profess to be Christians, but are not possessors of the living Christ. Do you just follow Jesus for what He can do for you, like so many Israelites did after Jesus fed the 5000 people (John 6), and Jesus said to them to not work for food that spoils but to listen to truth and take hold of it, that truth that leads to eternal life (John 6:26-27). Did you follow Jesus to the cross, and then stop there? If you were an Israelite in the time of Christ, did you not continue on to the empty tomb and then to the day of Pentecost to receive the promised Holy Spirit (Acts 1:4, Acts 2)? Today, the moment you place faith in Christ Jesus alone, in what His death, burial and resurrection accomplished for you, you are born again (John 1:12-13, Ephesians 1:13). That is, you immediately have the Holy Spirit placed in you and become a new creation, neither an Israelite nor a Gentile, but a child of God (1 Corinthians 12:13).

Have you really understood who Jesus is and what He came to do? Was He just a political leader to overthrow Rome, to kick those evil Gentiles out? Who is He that you may put your trust in Him? And what are you putting your trust in Him for? Have you recognized your condition since birth, of a need for meaning and purpose, of a need for unconditional love and acceptance, of redemption from sin unto new life? Jesus is the solution to the deepest need of your heart, the emptiness in your soul. Do you not realize that not only that you are a sinner, and your sins needed forgiveness, but also sin is what caused your death, which is the reason for that emptiness you feel? That emptiness you feel is a separation from the life of God. You are born without the Holy Spirit of God living in you (Genesis 3, Romans 5:12, Romans 3:9, Genesis 5:3).

And that is the reason God sent Jesus into this world (John 3:16), to save you from your condition of spiritual death, of already being condemned because of sin (John 3:18), so that you might be restored to what true humanity is, of being made complete in Christ, to have the Holy Spirit alive living in you (1 John 5:12). That is what salvation is, to receive the very life of God. Jesus, being God, took on human flesh, lived a perfect sinless life by love, fulfilled the law for us, and then met the demands of death for sin for us only to rise again to offer to us the same life that raised Him from the dead (Romans 5:10).

So what barriers do we have to understanding this simple message of God’s redeeming grace in Christ Jesus? The Israelites in Jesus day relied on their traditions, relying on the law of Moses, of its sacrificial system of sacrificing bulls and goats, which can only cover sin but not take them away. The author of Hebrews says that that system has been set aside (Hebrews 7:18, Hebrews 10:9). What system of sacrifice in our religious upbringing do we hold onto that has been passed on to us? As a Catholic, do we hold onto the tradition of going to a confessional booth, confessing to a priest to get your sins forgiven? As a Protestant, do we hold onto a tradition of going direct to God, often with a misapplication of 1 John 1:9, to get your sins forgiven? Have we not understood the message that God made us forever perfect in His sight by and through the one time sacrifice of His Son, Christ Jesus (Hebrews 10:10,14)? Have we not understood that under a New Covenant, God has said He will remember our sins no more and where these have been forgiven there is no longer any sacrifice for sins (Hebrews 10:16-18)? Have we not understood what Jesus said when crying out from the cross, hanging on a tree, dying for us, saying, “It is finished”, meaning “paid in full” (John 19:30)? Have we not understood that there is now no more sacrifice for sin that remains(Hebrews 10:26-27), and that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin (Hebrews 9:22)? Do we really know what sin is, that Jesus said He came to prove the world wrong about sin (John 16:7-9)? Jesus said that the sin He is talking about is the sin of unbelief in Him (John 16:9 NASB).

One passage of scripture that is so often not understood is this passage in Hebrews 10:26-31.

Hebrews 10:26-31
26 If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27 but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.

People think of sin as those outward sins, such as adultery and murder, those filthy five and those dirty dozen. But this is not what this verse is talking about when using the phrase, “if you keep on sinning”. People do not understand what sin is. Worry is sin. Anxiety is sin. Anything that does not come from faith is sin (Romans 14:23). Some people will say they do not commit adultery or do not commit murder. Yet they have forgotten what Jesus said about that type of thing. If you look at a woman with lust you already committed adultery (Matthew 5:28). Are you therefore not sinning when you lust? When you are angry with someone you already murdered them in your heart (Matthew 5:22). Are you going to say anger toward someone is not a sin when Jesus said it is? As a matter of fact it is same as murdering him. I ask you fellow Christians out there, have you stopped totally in your life from ever getting angry at someone? If you think you have, I will let you drive on the Los Angeles expressway some time and see if that continues. Are you saying that lust has just left you and that it will never enter your mind again, and you never had a lustful thought? Even if you haven’t lusted in ten years and all of a sudden you did again, then have you not stopped sinning? So then, what is this “continual keep on sinning” mean?

What is sin from God’s vantage point? Jesus said sin is unbelief. The sin talked about here is the sin of unbelief as we read what Jesus said sin is in John 16:9. This is talking about sinning against the knowledge of truth, the truth that Jesus says will set men free. Jesus explained what is necessary for man to know in order to receive eternal life, and that is by faith in Him, in what He alone did by His death, burial and resurrection.

In the context of Hebrews, the author is writing to a Hebrew audience, of those Israelites who just a short time ago were under a system of law, under an Old Covenant system of sacrifice, that has now been set aside for a New Covenant with better promises (Hebrews 7:18, Hebrews 10:9). They were claiming they were believers, but they were professors of Christ not possessors of Christ. They heard the truth that Jesus died, was buried and rose again, but they insisted on relying on their old tradition of keeping the old law of Moses for salvation, of being right before God by observing the law (John 8:23, Romans 10:2-4). Since the only way sins can be taken away from the eyes of God is for God Himself to shed His own blood on a cross in the person of Christ Jesus, then they are insulting the Spirit of grace, making a mockery of the cross, that the price of death for sin, for all mankind, back to Adam and forward to eternity was paid in full, and there will be no more sacrifice for sin (Hebrews 10:16-18). Jesus blood was of such eternal quality that it took away forever the cause of our death (1 John 2:2 NASB). The only sin attributable to man is the sin of unbelief in what Jesus accomplished. This sin must be repented of. The Hebrews here were not willing to believe the truth, and so if they persist in unbelief, they will die in their sins and be in hell forever, a place Jesus referred to as a place of raging fire and where the worm never dies (Mark 9:47-48).

If you are not going to trust that sacrifice, which one are you going to trust? From God’s vantage point, there is not any sacrifice left. If you are not going to trust the Lord Jesus Christ for your forgiveness from what He did and continue to want to trust in what you are doing today, you do not have anything to look forward to except hell. You are trusting in your own system of forgiveness. You are therefore an enemy of God and what makes you an enemy of God is you are spitting in the face of the crucified Jesus saying, “I do not believe you when you said ‘it is finished’.”

There are those who have not heard the truth concerning Christ Jesus, and God is patient, waiting for the time they too will hear the truth, so that they will not perish and come to repentance unto eternal life (2 Peter 3:9). What this is saying is after you heard the truth now, do not persist in unbelief. Let go of your traditions and lies, your barriers to truth, and accept what is true, that you have heard from the word of God (John 1:1-4,14; John 17:17). In other words, have you been presented with the finality of the cross? Have you been presented with the truth of Jesus saying it is all done? Have you been presented the truth that you are under a New Covenant whereby He said “your sins and lawless acts I will remember no more and where those have been forgiven there is no longer any sacrifice for sin” (Hebrews 10:16-18). Have you been presented with the fact that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness (Hebrews 9:22). In order for God to execute any further forgiveness on your behalf, Christ Jesus would have to come and die again if His death was not the final sacrifice, a propitiation of sin, accepted by God once and for all and forever as sufficient (1 John 2:2 NASB), and the shedding of blood was necessary for sins to be forgiven (Hebrews 9:22).

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