Preaching - Lesson 28
Hearing the Application of Redemptive Principles
In this lesson, you'll learn about the importance of redemptive principles in preaching and how to identify these principles within the Scriptures. You'll explore the difference between principles and application, and how to effectively preach these principles to your congregation in a way that engages and speaks to them. The lesson will also delve into the challenges and pitfalls of preaching redemptive principles, ensuring you avoid misinterpretation and maintain a Christ-centered approach.
Hearing the Application of Redemptive Principles
I. Introduction to Redemptive Principles
A. Definition and Importance
B. Role in Preaching
II. Identifying Redemptive Principles in Scripture
A. Biblical Examples
B. Contextual Interpretation
C. Principles vs. Application
III. Preaching Redemptive Principles
A. Developing Sermons
B. Making the Message Relevant
C. Engaging the Congregation
IV. Challenges and Pitfalls
A. Avoiding Misinterpretation
B. Balancing Principle and Application
C. Staying Christ-Centered
- Gain insights into effective preaching principles, covering history, essential components, styles, and techniques, and learn how to prepare and deliver impactful sermons.
- Gain valuable insights on sermon construction, learn techniques for effective preaching, and understand the importance of continuous improvement for delivering impactful messages.
- Through this lesson, you gain valuable insights into the process of text selection and interpretation for preaching, as well as learning practical techniques for delivering engaging and relevant sermons.
- In this lesson, you gain insight into the process of creating a sermon, from text selection to delivery, emphasizing textual analysis and message relevance.
- Through this lesson, you gain the skills to craft clear, engaging, and memorable sermons by mastering the principles of effective outlining and arrangement in preaching.
- Through this lesson, you learn to craft effective propositions and main points, enhancing your preaching clarity and impact.
- By exploring homiletical outlines, you'll learn to effectively develop and structure sermons, understand various outline types, and apply engaging presentation techniques for impactful preaching.
- In this lesson, you gain insights into crafting engaging introductions for sermons, exploring their importance, characteristics, types, and the process of creating a compelling introduction that effectively connects to the message.
- Through this lesson, you learn the importance of exposition in preaching, how to develop an expository sermon, and the role of the preacher for effective communication.
- This lesson teaches you to create captivating sermon introductions using anecdotes, questions, and facts, guiding you through research, structuring, and presentation to maximize audience engagement and improve your overall sermon impact.
In order to understand the basic subdivisions of your sermon in expository development, it is important to it is helpful to see what the specific members of your sermon's body looks like in standard development.
- By completing this lesson, you learn to effectively prepare and deliver sermons while focusing on personal growth, continuous improvement, and dependence on God.
- Learn to effectively classify and develop sermons into topical, textual, and expository types, enhancing your preaching skills and audience connection.
- In this lesson, you learn the significance of explanation in preaching and strategies to craft and deliver effective explanatory sermons while evaluating their effectiveness for continuous improvement.
- By incorporating illustrations into your preaching, you engage listeners, clarify complex ideas, and enhance memory retention while learning effective guidelines to utilize various types of illustrations.
- Explore this lesson to learn how to effectively use illustrations in sermons by isolating events or experiences, refining principles, and connecting with your audience through human interest accounts.
- Through this lesson, you learn to effectively use illustrations in preaching to engage listeners, clarify concepts, and draw from various sources, while maintaining relevance, variety, and ethical considerations.
- Gain insight into the importance of application in preaching, as well as principles and methods for effective application, to create impactful and relevant sermons that resonate with your audience.
- Through this lesson, you learn to effectively apply biblical teachings to modern life, considering various approaches, overcoming challenges, and utilizing practical tips for context-sensitive and culturally aware application.
- Through this lesson, you gain insights into crafting effective transitions in preaching and utilizing the dialogical method for increased audience engagement and message clarity.
- Gain insight into various sermon presentation methods, their advantages and disadvantages, and learn to choose the right method and improve your preaching skills.
- Through this lesson, you enhance your preaching skills by mastering vocal techniques and purposeful gestures, ensuring a connection with the audience while continually improving your delivery.
- Learn the significance of dress and style in preaching and how to balance authenticity, appropriateness, and clarity to effectively communicate your message to your audience.
- You learn to effectively repurpose old sermons, gaining insight into updating them for relevance, enhancing delivery, and managing time efficiently.
- By studying this lesson, you gain insight into the crucial connection between the Word and Spirit in preaching and learn to balance them for effective and authentic sermons.
- Through this lesson, you learn how to apply a Christ-centered, redemptive-historical approach to preaching, addressing common criticisms and enhancing your sermons.
- Through this lesson, you learn to compose powerful redemptive messages that highlight Christ's work and connect biblical themes to modern audiences.
- Through this lesson, you gain an understanding of redemptive principles in preaching, learning to identify them in Scripture and effectively apply them to your sermons while navigating potential challenges.
- By exploring the importance of genre in biblical interpretation and applying redemptive interpretation to various biblical genres, you will gain knowledge and insight into the historical and literary context, redemptive themes and patterns, and contemporary application of different types of genres in the Bible.
Dr. Bryan Chapell explores the unifying principle of grace that binds all Scripture together. He outlines and demonstrates the principles and practice of sermon-crafting and delivery to illuminate the message of grace in each passage, and to submit it to God's Spirit for the transformation of lives through preaching.
Dr. Chapell is making these recorded lectures available for you to access at no charge on BiblicalTraining.org. However, there is no personal interaction with Dr. Chapell in this format. The assignments and activities described are for classes that he teaches in person. We left the descriptions in for your benefit, but we do not offer personal or group interaction to participate in these activities. You can, however, sign up for his new preaching classes at BryanChapell.com/courses.
Dr. Chapell is helped in this course by Zachary W. Eswine, Assistant Professor of Homiletics and Director of the Doctor of Ministry Program (BSW, Ball State University; MDiv, Covenant Theological Seminary; PhD, Regent University). Dr. Eswine served as senior pastor of Grace Church of the Western Reserve in Hudson, Ohio, for six years before joining Covenant Seminary's faculty in 2001. He has served as a campus minister with the Navigators, as a church youth director, and as a chaplain-evangelist in retirement facilities. Since arriving at the Seminary, Dr. Eswine has also served as interim pastor for Tates Creek Presbyterian Church in Lexington, Kentucky, as advisory pastor for the Chinese Gospel Church of St. Louis, and as interim pastor for Cornerstone Evangelical Free Church in St. Louis. He has taught New Testament in Ukraine and served as a short-term missionary in the Caribbean. Dr. Eswine is a gifted preacher and has authored the book Kindled Fire: How the Methods of C. H. Spurgeon Can Help Your Preaching and numerous articles on homiletics. In addition, as an accomplished musician and songwriter, he has recorded three collections of original songs.
Philosophy and Goals of the Course
1. "Prep and Del" is an introduction to the basics of sermon construction and delivery. This is not primarily a course on the theology of preaching, but rather is a practical introduction to the tools, structures, and concepts that help preachers learn to put a sermon together.
2. Because this course is introductory, certain standards of sermon construction are taught that I hope you will consider "foundational" rather than universal. There is not only one "right way" to preach. However, mastering the methods of this course will help you develop the tools needed for many kinds of future sermons. Students from many backgrounds and preaching traditions have found these tools helpful even as they prepare for other styles in the future. Other methods and styles will be taught and encouraged in future semesters.
3. In Dr. Chapell's seminary class, you would be asked to present some short oral assignments to the class in order to: a) begin integrating the information presented in lectures; b) begin honing your preaching skills; c) and, remove some of the intimidation of your first preaching experience next semester.
(At this time, we do not provide personal interaction to evaluate your progress. We included the suggested assignments and activities to give you direction as you apply the principles you are learning to your own sermon preparation and delivery.)
Christ-Centered Preaching (text only) 2nd(Second) edition by B. Chapell
Christ-Centered Preaching: Redeeming the Expository Sermon [Hardcover]Bryan Chapell (Author)
Christ-Centered Sermons: Models of Redemptive Preaching
Highly regarded preacher and teacher Bryan Chapell shows readers how he has prepared expository sermons according to the principles he developed in his bestselling...
Dr. Bryan Chapell
Hearing the Application of Redemptive Principles
[00:00:00] This recording is provided courtesy of Covenant Theological Seminary. Christ centered preaching. First, it's its necessity. If we're being true to Christ own hermeneutic. And then last time began to talk about how does that Christ centeredness get excavated from all the scriptures, and particularly that grace message in its various forms that is either preparing or predicting or reflecting or resulting from the work of Christ, or for the work of Christ, all of those components. And remember, we talked about macro ways of looking at the text, kind of the genesis revelation, where's this text fit in the big scheme or some micro interpretation? Is there doctrinal statement in there this reflective of the grace of God, or are there relationships either of God toward his people or them toward one another? Are there relational reflections of God's grace that are ultimately going to be more fully represented in the work of Christ? And kind of the key thought that I'd hope you'd walk away with is the two lenses, you know, the glasses you can put on to look at any text and begin to think in redemptive terms. And it's just. Two simple questions. What does this text tell me about God? Was this text Tell me about me. And by having those two perspectives, you begin to think there's there's more here than just good behavior or even believing, right? Doctrine. Somehow I have to be communicating how God is the hero of the text. How is God bridging the difference between who He is and who I am? If if you approach the text that way, then there are dominant themes that begin to result in redemptive or Christ centered messages. And our goal today is to diagnose those themes. But the larger when you see is to use redemptive principles in the application of scripture in order to provide biblical motivation and enablement.
[00:02:01] Now, the reason for motivation enablement is because of these dominant themes that begin to come out from a Christ centered perspective. Obviously central themes of a Christian perspective are not solar bootstraps or the deadly bees, but rather messages that will be consistent will be great despite our sin. Messages of God's assurance and adoption. Typical topics would be things like our comfort in God's love. And I know the word Sabbath. There may seem to be unusual because often the word Sabbath makes people feel uncomfortable in God's love. Right. I mean, it's we don't keep the Sabbath. We don't do enough. God has requirements for the Sabbath. But biblical theology does something to your perspective of why the Bible is saying certain things, even like Sabbath. We we remember God created the earth in six day, the seventh day he rested. There was the first Sabbath, even for God. And while man existed in the garden, there was this resting that continued. Not only is God resting from his labors, but food is supplied. There is this. There is this stewarding of the garden, but it is not the same as the labor that will come after the fall, right in which the thorns and thistles will come, and in which man will make his way in the world by the sweat of his brow. Labor takes the place of rest and then ultimately is put out of the place of rest. And we kind of see all the labor that continues until a time in which there is great bondage and labor in the land of Egypt. Here, the covenant people of God, they are laboring in slavery. But God says, I'll take you out of the house of bondage and promises them a new land.
[00:04:01] It's called Canaan the Promised Land, but it's got another name to it is called the Land of Sabbath. They will go from labor. To rest. They go back to Sabbath land and even their God gives them commands. Six days you shall labor. But the seventh day is a Sabbath time of rest. And we even hear Jesus saying that the Sabbath was not man was not made for the Sabbath. The Sabbath was made for he. He gets to enter rest in Sabbath land and on the Sabbath day ceases from labor. From working his way through the world, he gets to rest in God. And then you have the book of Hebrews, of course, the writer telling us that there yet remains a Sabbath work rest for the people of God, that people are striving, working, trying to get God's approval. But God has nonetheless, by his son, provided a Sabbath. They can rest from their labors, rest from their striving now, not just in terms of making their way in the world, but making their way to God. They are resting in him. It's Sabbath again. So that we're told actually in Isaiah that when the New Kingdom, the new creation comes, that we are finished with this veil of tears, this world of labor, and that when the new creation comes, we reenter God's. Sabbath. So that one way of kind of preaching the scriptures is to say, you're not resting enough on the Sabbath, so be a better Sabbath keeper. And of course, the Bible does say that. But the emphasis in biblical theological perspective is inter the rest that God has free. You can cease from your rest like that's done. You're not striving to make your way to God anymore. And he even shows it to you with this regular rest that you may enter that is emblematic of the spiritual rest that you're forever, no longer.
[00:06:13] Do you work for God's approval? He has provided your rest now. That's a different way of looking at the theme of our comfort in God's love. Right. If we're talking about grace despite our sin, we'll also be talking about our confidence of God's love. If my son disobeys me, I may be very displeased with him. But he's still my son. The relationship does not change. Confidence in our Sonship is part of the message of God's grace, despite our sin. A second dominant message that comes out of excavating the grace from all of Scripture is grace destroying the guilt of sin. Grace destroying the guilt of sending messages of justification and forgiveness. Typical topics would be things like our repentance, obviously God's cleansing, and most particularly the work of Christ atonement, whether it's being prefigured or accomplished or the result of Christ atonement. What are the implications of grace destroying the guilt of sin? You have to say for the Reformation, that's probably the key thing. Right. Of the Reformation doctrines that cause the movement of the church, that we're a part of the message of grace destroying the guilt of sin in justification. Grace. The feeling, the power of sin. SI is probably more the issue of the moment. Issues of sanctification and enablement by grace also that are power over sin for daily living is also by the grace of God. The Reformation really underscored grace in justification. You had the weight of some of the Scottish revival movements and things like the marrow controversy where people begin to say, Well, what is the role of grace in sanctification? And while reformers have almost always been very clear on the role of grace and justification, it's the role of grace and sanctification that sometimes troubles us.
[00:08:18] Typical topics over Grace. Defeating the power of sin are issues of our victory over the world, the flesh and the devil. Speaking of God's provision of the Holy Spirit, and He is giving us his word to enable our victory. We have power not been our strength, not by our ability, not even by our will. But ultimately, our power is by the grace of God. And a final kind of overarching topic that would come is grace. Compelling holiness. Grace, compelling holiness. Messages about worship and obedience, but that is stimulated by the grace of God. Typical topics would be things like Thanksgiving and praise and gratitude, a word we'll come back to later, but most specifically, loving service. Service to God that is driven by love and grace. Being kind of the the the steam in the engine that is powering that love, it is this last topic loving service that is often the telltale sign of the key mark of Christ centered preaching. People worry that emphasizing grace undermines obedience. Consistently preaching the necessity. And the proper motivation, the necessity and the proper motivation for holiness may be the most difficult task evangelical preachers face because we culturally define grace as license. Rather than the biblical power of holiness. You recognize that, right? When most people say, Oh, you can't, I thought you believed in grace. You're not requiring you to do anything. Are you saying actually that that is the world definition of grace? The Bible's definition of grace is it's the power of obedience, not the antidote to obedience. It's actually what is empowering obedience. And because we're so immersed in a culture that takes grace as license, it is why people fear grace. We have to ask ourselves, seriously, how does the Bible itself motivate us to be holy? And kind of the subquestion the subtext is, what's your own theology of change? What really causes people to change? Now, my question is very specific.
[00:10:49] What makes redeemed people I'm not talking about unredeemed and regenerate. I mean, I'm talking specifically about the covenant people of God. What makes redeemed people more holy threats of condemnation or promise of grace? It's not a new question as a review of Romans six, one will assure you. Romans six one is what should we continue in sin? That Grace. Oh, Grace. Great. You know, now I just continue in sin. Well, no, no, no. It never be. He is not interpreting Grace to mean that you can just continue in sin. The the question revolving around grace is really no different than that. That revolves around the perseverance of the saints as a doctrine. What do people say? You can't just you can't just say that people will not lose their salvation. They'll just do whatever they want. I mean, perseverance of the Saint is interpreted as have Grace will party, you know. You know, and you're saying, no, no, no, no. It's actually perseverance that's driving holiness when it's rightly understood. It's because I am held by God that I return to him always as a father that I recognize, even when I have departed from him, he's not departed from me. So that Paul will say it's the kindness of God that leads us to repentance. It is this it's this knowledge of His faithfulness that ultimately brings us to faithfulness. It's very counterintuitive. It's counter human reflex to say that it's love that will generate obedience rather than threat. The question. Despite the Bible saying and emphasizing the grace of God leads to obedience is still debated in every generation of believers. In your readings, I think I quoted the the famous John Bunyan account, the rider of Pilgrim's Progress. Remember? Here he is.
[00:12:47] Bunyan is not going to establish. Not going to follow the establishment rules of being ordained by the king. So he is going to preach because the church ordains him, not because he is going to come under the authority of the king. So Bunyan gets thrown in prison and of course, he's not the only one thrown in prison. The Anabaptist people have a very different theology than Bunyan are also being thrown in prison because they won't come under the authority of the King. And so what did these people do? This reformed Baptist preacher in the Anabaptist here they are in prison facing death. So what do they do every evening? They debate theology and the Anabaptist say to Bunyan. You should not keep assuring people of God's love. If you keep assuring people of God's love, they'll do whatever they want. And Bunyan's famous reply was No. If you keep assuring God's people of God's love. They'll do whatever he wants. Here it if it's redeemed. Long ago. And in this in this place, we had a pastor come for a day of prayer and he reminded us of something I had not thought of. He said, you know, we're so scared of preaching to God's people what they ought to do because we think they will reject us. But what we forget is that God's people, not the rebellious, not the emergent, but God's people, want to know what God wants of them. They actually want to know. So if we are instilling love in them for God, it's actually igniting in them a greater compulsion to obey him. And that is the page too. If you begin to say what really motivates people, it is the compelling power of love for God. Reason ask why should people be holy if all you do is keep assuring them of grace? Scripture answers, as Jesus himself would in John 1415 If you love me.
[00:14:59] You will obey what I command. Why do you keep assuring people of God's grace? Because Jesus said if people love him, they would do what he commands. That's why you assure them of Grace. Or Paul in second Corinthians 514. It is the love of God that constrains us to preach the Gospel. Why would we go against persecution and oppression and disadvantage? Because of the love of God? It is love for Him that is compelling us to do these things that seem humanly impossible and certainly humanly disadvantageous. But the love of God is compelling us to doing these most difficult and yet necessary things. Most people and sadly, I think most preachers think the goal of preaching is to get people to do what they don't want to do. Yet. Preachings, high esteem and greatest power lies in convincing others of the love of God in Christ that makes the heart willing. And able to do what God desires. That is that is the glory of preaching, not to not to strong arm people into doing what they don't want to do, but to actually have such love in them arise that they want to do and are able to do what God delights them. When we know that He delights in us, we desire to please him. Conviction of sin is most necessary. But its aim is not simply to make people feel guilty, but to enable them to comprehend the greatness of God's grace. If my guilt is so great, then the fact that I am forgiven makes my awareness of the grace of God all the more precious. It is why, you know, one of the old lines of preaching is it is necessary to convict of sin. But the sermon is not done until you have convinced of grace.
[00:17:02] If all of those convicted of sin, the sermon can't be done. That's not the gospel. Not all of it. Search is not done until I have convinced of grace, because it is too convincing of grace that actually makes me want to overcome the sin to strive now against it. So conviction of sin is not is most necessary, but its aim is not simply to make people feel guilty, but to enable them to comprehend the greatness of God's grace. Grace liberates from sins, guilt and power by filling God's people with love for Him that makes them willing and able to please him. I love how the confession says, Listen, I've given portions of the 20th and the What is that? The 19th chapter in front of you there, the Liberty, which Christ has purchased for believers under the Gospel. Consist in their freedom from the guilt of sin. Now, that's a very interesting statement. If you are a believer, you are free from the guilt of sin and you may feel guilty. But you're actually objectively free from the guilt of yours. And how much of your past sin has Christ taken away? How much of your present sin has Christ taken away? How much of your future sin has Christ taken away? All the guilt of it all is taken away. So we are free from the condemnation and the guilt of sin. There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus. I may feel guilty that subjective guilt, but objectively there is no more guilt. Because Christ has taken it all. What does that do? Our liberty, purchased for believers under the Gospel, consists in their freedom from the guilt of sin, freedom from the condemning wrath of God, freedom from the curse of the moral law, and in their being delivered from the dominion of sin that is their free from the power of sin too, as also in their free access to God and their yielding obedience to Him.
[00:19:10] Key words. Not out of slavish fear. But a child like love and willing mind. Have you thought about that as a goal of preaching, to convince people to enable them to serve God not out of anything but a childlike love? And a willing mind that becomes the ultimate goal. The last paragraph says this too. Neither are the aforementioned uses of the law, contrary to the grace of the gospel. So the law still is there, still in effect, in the sense of giving us standards. But the fact that we have the law is not contrary to the grace of the gospel, but sweetly complies with it. The Spirit of Christ subduing and enabling the will of man to do that freely and cheerfully, which the will of God revealed in the law requires to be done. So the law still requiring. As not to steal the laws to requiring not to take the name of the Lord in vain. The law is still requiring that we be faithful to our spouses. But that is not to say that the law justifies. It is God's path of delight for us and goodness for our lives. And our walking in that path occurs freely and cheerfully. No, we don't walk in the path because God says, I won't love you if you get off the path. We're free from the condemning wrath. We're free from guilt, we're free from the power of sin. But we walk in the path because we delight to do so when we understand his grace in our behalf. So we need to ask again what better leads to true holiness, threats of punishment that is condemnation or promise of grace. That question, which will be more effective often leads us to item B, understanding the relationship between our conduct and God's acceptance.
[00:21:26] Here's the question. Are we holy? For God's acceptance. Or are we holy from God's acceptance? The instincts of the average person are to say, I'll be holy, so God will accept me. The holy for God's acceptance that the Gospel is the holy. Because God has accepted you. Question. The. We'll get there in just a bit. So let me ask let me answer and then we'll flesh it out later. Ultimately, what we'll say is there are many motivations. Self-preservation is one of the biblical motivations, self-preservation. But if you say the primary reason and here's the key word, if the primary reason that you're obeying God is to take care of you. Then your service is selfish and not holy at all. So God will give us understanding of your primary motivation has to be out of love for him. And the way that we preach such things is with an understanding If God didn't love you, he wouldn't warn you. And the warnings itself are an expression of divine love for a people he desires to preserve. So it's not the sense of you better obey or the ogre in the sky is going to get you. It is actually, your father in heaven has warned you of a safe path. Stay in that path. So it's somewhat I mean, you're picking up on just the right thing. The rules aren't going to change, but the reasons for obedience are dramatically different. If one is perceiving that, what my goal is to motivate people by love primarily rather than simply self-protection. We'll get there more. But it's a great thing to pick up on. And let me tell you, my own struggles and a number of you comment on this in your readings last time. So I am sorry if this is redundant, but I mean, it just so much of my life has been kind of unfolding from that period of about, I don't know, 4 to 5 years out of seminary when I had the wonderful privilege of going to what would have been the the oldest and largest church in my presbytery.
[00:23:46] And, you know, as kind of the youngest minister in the presbytery, that was that was kind of a moment for great personal pride and arrogance. But. It didn't go very well. And it used to bother me so much. There was so much struggle in this historic church. I mean, it was over 150 years old. It was the the First Presbyterian Church in the Indiana territory. Now it was in the state of Illinois, But before Illinois was even a state that was established, it was the First Presbyterian Church in the Illinois territory, first hundred and 50 years. It was pastored by only three people, three Scottish pastors Wiley, Smiley and Stewart. It sounds like a Scottish law firm, doesn't it? Wiley, Smiley and Stewart. And they had long stays. But even though there was this kind of this long history of the faith. I'll tell you, we had so much adultery. And addictive problems and depression. And week after week. I must tell you, I would just get so mad at those people. Just so mad at them for for not honoring the word of God despite this prediction that they had. And then ultimately, I must be trying to tell you, I begin to feel that that the problem was not so much them as it was me and preachers like me. I was so hurt by the situation. I must tell you, it was only about five years out of seminary. I thought. I thought I would have to leave the ministry. I mean, I went into the ministry desiring to help people. I mean, I wanted to do that. And yet every week I would stand up and just hammer on people. Stop doing that. Straighten up. Don't you know all of that? And I said to my wife, at some point, all I do is hurt people.
[00:25:45] It's all I do. I just stand up here and hurt people every week. I can't keep doing this. I just can't keep doing this. I don't know. There are various things that begin to kind of intersect into my life to kind of help me understand what I was doing, what some of the dynamics were. One of them was that book that you're reading. I know you think it's so strange. It was Sydney Goodness. Sola Scriptura. I was just looking for anything that would tell me a different way to preach and that that article on how do you use the exemplars in the Bible? Is it just helping you to use there to be a Daniel and you just be as good as Dave and so in and not seeing that crudeness help me to see was actually those people were awful people. It's God's grace that made them able. And God was using them to teach us of His grace, not just be a better person. But where I really heard it, where I really heard it was not in my preaching. I mean, people would, you know, always kind of slap me on the back for my preaching. Where I really heard it was in counseling situations. And I would say to people things, you know, a couple that might be caught in immorality. And I'd say to them, somebody, listen, you should not expect God to love you if you're going to keep doing this. As you hear what I just said. God's love was dependent on their behavior. And it was in kind of the quietness of that of that counseling room that I actually began to hear what I was saying and thinking and acting like that was so contrary to my theology.
[00:27:18] I didn't I didn't believe that God's love was based on human action. And yet it's what I would preach if, if not explicitly by implication, week after week after week. And I begin to say to myself, if there is the reason that people are so much struggling with addictive problems is they actually want to get away from the God I'm preaching. Is the reason that there's so much depression in this church is I don't give them any hope. I just keep making acceptance with God based upon their straightening up, and they gave up on trying to be straight enough for God a long time ago. So depression and immorality and addiction, they're just escapes from the gospel that I'm preaching here week after week. And it was the desire to find something different that began to make me either think I got to leave the ministry or I've got a preacher. Different gospel. And ultimately, to use the terminology, I recognized that I was already preaching a different gospel than the one in the Scriptures. I was preaching the gospel of Do Better. Not to preach that gospel is to understand the relationship between the imperative and the indicative. The classic statement from Ritter, Boss, is this the imperative items see in your notes? The imperative rests on the indicative. And the order is not reversible. Who we are in Christ. That is the indicative who we are in Christ. Is the basis and power for what we do. That is the imperative that pleases God. Now. Ritter Technical explanation. I get on the next page for you. It's what he says in Paul, an outline of his theology. No less striking in this respect. He's talking about how the relationship with God precedes obedience to him.
[00:29:17] No less striking in this respect is Colossians three three and following where in response to the statement for you have died and your life is hid in in God now even hard for us. And similar to hear that language just think we said you're dead. Your life. Your identity is dead and you are now hid in God. There's another identity that you have because you're dead. After saying this, that your identity is now wrapped in God, the command it once resounds. Put to death. Therefore, your members that are upon the earth, fornication and cleanness, etc.. Having once died. The Christ that is being. In him. Having this new identity does not render superfluous putting to death the members that are upon the earth. So the fact that you're in Christ does not render superfluous the need for holiness. But is precisely the great urgent reason for it. The imperative is thus founded on the indicative. It is immediately clear that the imperative rests on the indicative, and this order is not reversible. The standard human reflex is to say, I will obey God, and then I will get his love. And the Gospel is saying you have his love even when you were his enemy. He died for you. Therefore serve him. And if that captures you, it will change absolutely everything in your life. I can remember. And maybe you think it's silly when some of these kind of grace perspectives begin to come into my life and my wife's and how it even changed the way we would talk to our children. There was a time, I would say to my son, Collin, you're a bad boy because you did that. Now, do you hear the theology of that simple statement? You are what you did.
[00:31:29] The indicative rests on the imperative. You did or did not do something, and therefore that determines what you are. You are a bad boy because you did that. What we began to say, maybe it sounds silly, too, is we would say Colin. Don't do that. You're my son. I want what you do to be based on who you are. And that's not going to change. You're my son. Be what you are. Live out this relationship. And to be able to say that as a preacher from the pulpit is one of life's greatest privileges to say to God's people, Be what you are, you are children of light, you are the children of God. You are in Christ, Jesus. Thee what He's already made you to be live out the reality of your life. This is what you are. Live it Now. Rest on the indicative that he is established by living this out. And that becomes part of the pattern of Scripture once you see it, right God and giving the Ten Commandments. What's the preamble say before He says, Don't take my name in vain, Don't make any other graven image before he says always, I am the God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. I did this for you. You're free. Now live as a people of the covenant because of what you are. Live it out. He does not say because of what you are. There are no imperatives anymore. But the imperative rests on the indicative, and the order is not reversible. Even though all human reflex would say it is reversible. After the raid. Your boss quote, It simply says this in Christ centered preaching. The rules do not change. But the reasons do as one preaches, with a redemptive approach.
[00:33:31] Here's that concern for A.A. Milne isn't being addressed directly, right? People will say, If you talk too much grace, you kind of get rid of the rules. No, no, no, no. Listen, the rules stay in effect. But the reasons for obeying them changes entirely. Instead of gaining God's love by obedience, we are obeying because we have God's love. The imperative rest on the indicative. It does not disappear. The imperative rests on what God has already done. Ritter bus. Just not right. Just to reiterate that confession. Neither are the aforementioned uses of the law, contrary to the grace of the Gospel, but do sweetly comply with it. The Spirit of Christ subduing and enabling the will of man to do that freely and cheerfully, which the will of God revealed in the law requires to be done. We still do it, but it is with this whole new motivation of cheer, of delight, of love for God. Our goal in excavating the grace in every passage is not to minimize biblical imperatives, but to empower their application with proper motivation and enablement. And that is why a little later in the semester, you're going to read portions of holiness by grace, which, you know, when you've preached a little bit this semester, I think you'll keep asking this motivation question How does this work? How do we deal with people's need to turn from hell bent activity? How is holiness motivated by grace? And we'll kind of explore different components of that. But for now, at least begin to get a handle on by talking about what become the proper motivations. If we've said in answering those questions of application, you know what to do and where. If we're saying these things do not change now.
[00:35:32] If if this is actually what we're working on though. Y y y and we'll get to the house in a bit. How is motivation now working when we say we're excavating grace in order to compel love? We recognize first that there are proper motivations for Chrysler preaching, and the first one has to be love for God. And I would you know, this is a priority order. What I'm about to say, right, that the primary, the premiere motivation for obedience must be love for God. So we're revealing grace in all the scriptures. And this is more than an interpretive scheme. It is the chief expository means by which the preacher may provide consistent adulation of the mercy of God in Christ, consistent adulation of the mercy of God in Christ, in order to prompt our love for God. That is the most powerful motivation for Christian obedience. Biblical theology should be more should be more about fostering a relationship than promoting or arguing a science. Now, let me just stop there and tell you what I recognize to be some of the historical pitfalls. And maybe some of you do, too. If if you were not kind of in Presbyterian North American circles, but you were more in Dutch reform circles, thinks that I am talking to you are old news. I mean, they've been talked about for a century and a half. It's it's just old stuff. Old news, often kind of Presbyterian reformed evangelical settings at large. This is this is kind of new stuff and sometimes very suspect. But the consequence of saying that the Bible is not rightly executed until we have discerned the grace or the Christ focus of a text has led not so much to the emphasis upon loving God in reform circles, Dutch reform circles, as in the huge debates over what are the master metaphors of biblical theology, is the right grouping mechanism kingdom is the right grouping mechanism Creation fall redemption Consummation is the correct metaphor of all things.
[00:38:02] The covenant is the correct metaphor. Family is the correct metaphor. You know, Sabbath, some have said. And I kind of want to back away from it. Maybe those are wonderful things to explore. But the main thing to be pushing at for the edification of believers is to say, we are talking about having people understand. The relationship they have with God that he has established apart from their works. Now, there may be different ways to understand that. But but sadly, in so many of the Dutch reformed circles, Biblical theology has been nothing but a a place of debate and lines of cleavage and division in the church. Rather than a uniting understanding of God's people for why we love him. It's not a mystery to you that that some of this emphasis on crystals and travel kind of makes some people stand off a little bit and wonder if this is good or bad stuff and does it lead people astray. And if I could push away from all the debates, I would say, listen. I'm happy if you understand at least what I'm trying to push out is that the goal of the preaching is to have people love their savior more. And it seems to me that's kind of beyond debate. That we ought to be able to say, well, I'm out and trying to accomplish by the end of the day is how people love Jesus more. Because I think out of that will come all the obedience and all the love for others and all the mercy toward the oppressed and all the concern that needs to be expressed toward my family, the right relationship. But if I'm just saying I'm here to love Jesus more, to show him more. And that is why I am looking at the Bible as I am to try to create greater love for Christ that is relationally or it can't be non-rational.
[00:40:00] I don't mean that, but our understanding is driving a relationship more than a debate. Yeah. Sure. Yeah. If you would say that those people who are kind of standing outside and saying what are the concerns about not just Chrysler preaching, but kind of this grace movement that in our circles these days, what are they concerned about? One is they say it's incipient Lutheranism. You know, they would say that it is going to ultimately lead to some discounting of the law because we get this law gospel split going on. Well, you've heard me very much try to say today the law is in effect. Right. I mean, you all are smiling because you know why I did that? You know, I'm well aware that there there's that concern. I'm I'm well aware that that almost any of this discussion can become a new legalism in what I was just talking about, the debate. If you don't talk about grace the way I talk about grace, then you don't. You know, So we get the Sonship controversies going on and we get desiring God controversies going on and we get Christian preaching controversies going on. And I kind of want to say, all right, I know those are good and legitimate discussions, but if all we're doing is we're kind of having this academic debate. Then we're not doing the gospel work we ought to be doing, which is ultimately my driving you to understand in whatever language you get comfortable with. Loving Christ more is what the preaching is going to be about. Now, I didn't answer your question directly, but I'm trying to kind of use it like as a foil so people see some of the even the logic of what I'm talking about here and why we're taking the course we are even through this lecture.
[00:41:46] Did I answer enough? Sure. I mean, anything can be warped and anything can be. And that is why I am trying not to argue for a particular language. I am trying not to argue for particular code words. I am trying to obviously make an explanation of how it functions and then say I am not even trying to create the one master metaphor. That's got to work for everybody. A more saying. If in your heart of hearts, you kind of see God's people out there wanting to us wanting to love him and know him and obey him and struggling to do it. What will most help them? It's in whatever way is appropriate for your personality. That sort of situation does people to instill greater love for Christ. And that's kind of what I'm after. Can that answer your question? Yeah. I mean, and how does that occur? I mean, ultimately we'd say we love God because he. First loved us. So when you're talking about creating this compelling love for God, it's not a new command. Like you said, a new command. I give you that you should love one another, but it's not now a new imperative. You must have always been in place. But even that imperative rest on the indicative of his love for us. So, you know, you must now love. Well, of course you must love Jesus. But. But what we're recognizing, we can't. If we don't know He loves us, then it becomes absolutely impossible to love God. If you think he's the ogre in the sky, you can obey him if you think he's the ogre in the sky. But you cannot obey the first commandment. That you should love God with all your heart, soul and mind if you think he's the ogre in the sky.
[00:43:34] So to create a right understanding of those indicators is ultimately creating even the possibility of obeying God by loving Him. We were dealing with this love for God as primary motivation and various verses. Romans 12 one Obviously, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy to offer your bodies living sacrifices, do you see imperative and indicative there? The imperative off of your bodies is living sacrifices wholly in pleasing to God. I must tell you that most of my early Christian life I read that very differently than it is on the page here. What I read it to say was. I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, and then you'll be holy and pleasing to God. Have some of you read it that way? You'd be a good living sacrifice. And then you'll be holy and pleasing to God. What does it actually say that this is? This is not. This is not a this is not a statement of what you will be. It is a declaration of what you are. Not like that. Sacrifices of animals that you are already wholly in pleasing to God in view of His mercy. That is what he has already made you to be. Therefore, live it out as this living sacrifice your life now a praise to him. Live out this life that he has already made wholly and pleasing to himself. Consistent focus on Christ's mercy, rather than building up a dread of God, is what most powerfully motivated enables Christians in their fight against sin and desire to glorify God. The couple says that in Titus two, For the grace of God, that brings salvation. Has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say no to on kindliness and worldly passions.
[00:45:34] Amazing statement. It is the grace of God that is teaching us to say no to ungodly and worldly passions. It is that that grace that is compelling. Or even the Old Testament message is the joy of the Lord. That is our strength. Here again, is just this primary motivation of love for God. Now there are other motivations. Item B on page four is love for others. Loved by God. Why do I love the unlovely? Why do I love people who are mad at me? Why do I love people who are criticizing me, hurting me? Hurting my family? Well, if I believe that they are made in the image of God and some of them actually believe they're doing God's work by attacking me. I am going to love those that God loves. If He is my first love because he loves them, I not I may not have any earthly reason, any human, but because of his love for them, I love them. I have said it too. I think some of you on other occasions, but I don't think it was until I discovered kind of this great focused preaching. That I actually began to think I really love lost people. I think I was felt obligated to witness to them, even though I didn't like them. But I think it was finally when I began to say. God has worked in me a grace that's beyond any of my doing. So I'm looking to people who are filthy in language and habit and thought and practice and say, you know, you are like me apart from the grace of God. And if God loves you enough to put me in your life to hear the Gospel, then then I think I can love you because I love him, because he loves you.
[00:47:25] And for the first time not not make things like witnessing, you know, I've got to get another notch on my belt here to prove to God that I'm being faithful. But actually took too long to witness the people because I love them for the first time. And I must say, it's the only time I began to feel like I was effective at all in witnessing the people when I actually begin to love them. Because God did. You know the verses. I tell you the truth, Jesus said, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me. How is he motivating the disciples? Well, do it for me. And as long as you do it for the least, you're really doing it for me. So is motivating them for love. For up to love for others by love for himself. The final reason of obedience or for obedience is love for self. As one loved by God love herself. It's an interesting thing to be a child of the king. If he loves me, I guess it's okay if I love me. Do you know believers who actually think that self-hatred is a form of showing their faithfulness? That the way in which I show that I'm really, really serious about God is I hate myself and I feel bad about every sin longer than anybody else. And so they make self-loathing the basis of their status before God. And the trouble with that is it makes the blood of Christ have no effect. It is my self-loathing rather than his blood that makes me acceptable to God. And so the way in which I really, really, really show that I'm a great Christian is I feel real bad about myself for long periods of time.
[00:49:15] And I think that makes me wholly. Here's the problems. Here's what we should be doing. Number one, claiming the rights and privileges of our inheritance in Christ. I am a child of the king. In fact, I am his own inheritance. John Murray writes it this way. He says Grace is bestowed. And the relationship, the relation established by sovereign divine administration. All right. God establishes our relationship with him. How, then, are we to construe the conditions of which we have spoken? This was the earlier question, right? They are simply the reciprocal response of faith, love and obedience. Why does God say, Because you are mine? Walk in my ways. These conditions of experience and blessing are the reciprocal responses of faith, love and obedience, apart from which the enjoyment of the covenant blessing and the covenant relation is inconceivable. If I am not faithful to my spouse, it is inconceivable that I could enjoy the faithfulness of God. So God warns me about unfaithfulness because he wants me to have the enjoyment of the faithfulness that he delights him. So does God ever motivate us with good things in our lives? If I am faithful to my spouse, is their blessing to me. Sure. And God can motivate me by saying that you will delight in your wife and never really wonder in that in goodness. And so it's because I want to care for me that that I want to be faithful to my spouse. There's there's a right self-motivation. Now, there can be a wrong self motivation when it gets out of priority. If I bring home some flowers to my wife and meet her at the door and say, Hey, I brought you some flowers, and she says, That's wonderful. Why do you do that? Is it because it's so good for me? What's she going to do with those flowers? They come right back at you, baby, you know.
[00:51:27] Now this blessing to me. But the primary intent is to bless her. And so it's not wrong, is it? Yes, myself. Good can be in the frame when I hear the warnings in Scripture, when I hear the conditions on blessing. But still, the primary reason for preaching and motivating people has to be love for God, even if I am concerned about me as well in the Bible certainly motivates me with concern for me at times, but with the understanding of what God provides. And part of that motivation is number two, God motivates us with avoidance of the consequences of sin. Revealed by a loving God. God does motivate us with avoidance of the consequences of sin. But the last part is also important, revealed by a loving God. If God did not love us, He would not warn us of sins, consequences. I mean, that is one of the awful portions of Romans one, right? Where the the apostle looks at those who are caught in sin and says God simply lets them to go their way. He sent them. Let them have their way. But for his own people. He warns them of the consequences of sin. It's part of his love in expression. And that's why we see some of these standards in the Scriptures and begin to understand them as part of God's love saving discipline. Which is expressed toward us regularly. I mean, God disciplined his people versus retributive punishment which was inflicted on Christ once for all, I should say once for all. Is necessary distinction. Does God discipline his people? Yes. And there's a harder question. Does God punish his people? The answer is no. You know, you have to kind of go to the origins of words here.
[00:53:26] To punish someone is to inflict penalty on them. To discipline them is to seek to restore a relationship, to do what is best for them. So the penalty for my sin has been put on Christ. Now, even the apostle or the writer of Hebrews will tell us that no discipline seems pleasant for the moment. So God will warn us with discipline. But we are reminded that he only disciplines those he. Loves. He only disappoints. Which means when I am the throes of the worst discipline God can bring into my life. I am love no less. Now that has got to affect the way you preach. If all we're doing is warning people of the disciplines of God to turn them from wrong behavior. That does not accomplish God's purposes. If we do not say, as the writer of Hebrews would. But the discipline is out of love. His intention is only to help you. You remember the old preacher story about the woman who took her, her son, to the doctor because he was sick and the the doctor determined he'd have to give the kid a shot. And the mom said to comfort her child, You know, don't don't worry, Johnny. You know, it won't hurt. You won't hurt. Well, the doctor knew it was going to hurt. And so we said to him, Son. I may hurt you. But I will not harm you. Here's the difference between discipline and punishment. I may hurt you. But my goal is the fruit of righteousness, the blessings to come that I mean to bring into your life. No discipline for the moment seems pleasant, but when it has matured, it will bring about the fruit of righteousness, which is God's true intent. We may experience discipline as a result of our sin, but fatherly discipline, even when harsh, is still an expression of love for child welfare and discipline, preached without fatherly love as motivation will not accomplish God's purposes.
[00:55:38] Thus the conclusion there you see, there are many motivations for obedience. Fear of consequences. Desire for blessing. A certain love for self. Concern for others, and love for God. But since love of God must be the primary motivation in holiness, stimulating such love must be the primary and most consistent concern of our preaching. In order for our people to have holy power for their obedience. The message of grace is meant to stimulate love for God and its compelling power. It is this biblical theology that sees redemptive through throughout all the scriptures is Biblical theology enables us to see and expound this grace in all Scripture and thus rightly apply the whole counsel of God to our lives. If you begin to see that insincerity is creating this compelling love for God, what I am trying to do, then you at least have to counter it with saying what would be wrong motivations. I remember class some years ago when I was saying people try not to motivate people by the guilt of trying not to make guilt. Your primary motivation student held up his hand and he said. What else is there? And I think a lot of preachers think that if not, you know, what else is there to motivate people? And you know, what else? What is the other motivation? It is love. I mean, it may sound kind of schmaltzy and Swami to say, but there is no more powerful motivation in love. What drives the mother back into the burning building. It is love. There is no more powerful motivation in humanity than love. And love for God is the most powerful motivation for holiness. That means there can be improper motivations that are contrary to the whole counsel of God.
[00:57:32] A is making self-promotion. Or self-protection. The primary aims of obedience. You'd have you just honestly would say there are if you were to go through the pews of most of our churches and you would say, what are many people's primary motivations? They fall into one of two categories. They are people who are a vanguard so they can get more good stuff. Or they are obeying God. So the ogre in the sky won't get them. Now, listen, if you are serving God. So the ogre in the sky won't get you. Who are you really serving? Yourself. If you are obeying God so that you'll get more good stuff. Bigger house, prettier wife, more money. If your primary reason for serving God is so, you'll get more good stuff. Who are you really serving? It's just self. They're both just sanctified selfishness. And neither is worthy of those whose chief end is to glorify God and enjoy him forever. For those reasons, there have to be other ends that are driving us on the sheet at the back that I gave you the other day. J I Packer. Write it this way. The secular world. Never understands Christian motivation. Faced with the question of what makes Christians tick. Unbelievers maintain that Christianity is practiced only out of self-serving purposes. They see Christians as fearing the consequences of not being Christians. That is religion as fire insurance or feeling the need of help and support to achieve their goals. That is religion as a crutch or wishing to sustain a social identity. Religion is a badge of respectability. No doubt all of these motivations can be found among the membership of our churches. It would be futile to dispute that. But just as a horse brought into a house is not there made a human.
[00:59:50] So a self-seeking motivation brought into the church is not thereby made Christian. Nor will holiness ever be the right name for religion's for religious routines thus motivated. From the Plan of Salvation, I learn that the true driving force for authentic Christian living is and ever must be not the hope of gain, but the heart of gratitude. If you will, substitute Thanksgiving or even love of God. I'm happy because the word gratitude is a little debatable these days for reasons I'm about to discuss. But what is he saying? The world thinks you're selfishly motivated. Sadly, many Christians are. But what should be motivating them is a response to the grace of God. The Heidelberg Catechism, number 86. I usually think of this as one of the most honest of all questions that you'll find in a catechism anywhere. The question is this Since we are redeemed from our sin and its wretched consequences by grace through Christ without any merit of our own, why must we do good works? It's not a great question. Hey, if it all Grace, why be good? What does it say? So that with our whole life we may show ourselves grateful to God. For his goodness and that he may be glorified through us. If it's all Grace, why be good. Because I want to show my love for God. Now tell me why the word gratitude is debatable in our circles right now. Logan. Future. Great. Page 42 How does he define How does Piper define gratitude? I remember. A debtor. A better response to God. Now let's just say some things. If you define gratitude as a debt, a response. And of course, he's responding to a lot of his own upbringing background where some might say you should go to the mission field and Jesus did so much for you.
[01:02:06] Shouldn't you repay him by going to the mission field? And so Christian obedience and motivation is being driven by the sense of paying God back. And let let's all agree, if that's the kind of gratitude we're talking about, it is definitely wrong, if that's what we're talking about. The difficulty is not only among the reformers, but in the Bible. That is not how the word gratitude is used. The word gratitude is used as the substitute for thankfulness. So you'll get Colossians 316 telling us that we should sing to God with gratitude in our hearts. And it's just the word car is, by the way. It's just it's just the grace terminology. So with a grace response filled with grace, filled with an understanding that all that you have is not of you at all. Now if what you're doing is you're saying, No, no, no, I've got to pay God back with what I have. You believe me, you'll never pay it back. And what I've tried to do is actually substitute, as you see, for some of the cause of the controversy of that word. Right. Not just talk about love for God instead. Because it kind of throws people when you see the threat. But it's it's the language of the reformers consistently than it should be in Thanksgiving that we are responding. And almost nobody debates that we should be showing Thanksgiving to God. But it's it is not payback. It's just the response of a loving heart. Does it help at all? I mean, you all are aware of that controversy, I'm guessing, and I feel it kind of moving away as kind of future Grace gets to be older. And if people really begin to get into the book and say, how is he defining it? I mean, is that the way the reformers are using the term? And if you if you're troubled by gratitude, please just substitute love for God.
[01:03:49] Yes. Now God is most glorified when our greatest delight is in him. And we'd have to say that, you know, it's really the same message from a different angle. I mean, that not that that's not a different message, because what you're saying is, why would I delight in him? Because of what he has provided me. I love him because he first love me and therefore he's most glorified when I take my greatest delight in pleasing him. So it's it is my self delight to please one that I love. But the reason I love him is because he first love me. So that I mean, we would say that love for God is gratitude doesn't have to be something that is self-serving. Get a response. I get the monkey off my back by paying God back. Rather, it is again, the biblical terminology being filled with grace. Being very thankful in my heart for all that came to me by no doing of mine and no payback from me. Second, not only making a wrong motivation is self-promotion or self-protection being primary, but also using slavish that is selfish fear to use the reformers language, the confessional language, slavish fear rather than godly fear as motivation. Wrong motivation would be making personal protection from the ogre in the sky. The motivation of our preaching. But we must say there is a proper fear of God, isn't there? Doesn't the Bible talk about fear of God? Sure it does. Our trouble is we we don't have an easy English word that kind of fits in the fear of God. And I wish I did. But what I. Listen, if. If God were somehow to appear in our midst, we would all fall to the ground. There would be a right fear of God.
[01:05:38] But that fear of God is regard for him in all of his nature, not not just a disciplining side. It is proper regard for his love. It is proper regard for his fathering. It is proper regard for his sovereignty. Is it proper regard for for the awesomeness of who he is? And if you kind of just get it in your brain, what is proper fear? Motivation? Then I'm helped by Isaiah 11 two, which tells us that when Christ comes, he will walk in the. Fear of the Lord. So in whatever way you think Christ properly regards his father is the proper biblical fear. And it's not that sense of, Oh no, the ogre is going to get. I mean, that is not how Jesus would perceive his father. It's that it's that proper regard for all of it that God is. And that's what ultimately is making fear, biblical fear, even an aspect of responding to the love for God. And that the love that he has for us. Page five And I need to move quickly here. A wrong motivation is failing to distinguish between objective guilt and subjective guilt as motivation. Subject of guilt we've already talked about is what we feel in grieving the Holy Spirit, what we rightly call conviction for sin. But that is very different than objective guilt. That is the penalty for past, present and future sin placed on Christ and fully reconciled on the cross. Yes, we can convict people of sin, but we do not condemn them if they are God's people. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. And so making people aware that they have grieved the Spirit should lead them to seeking repentance. And knowing God's grace rather than the sense that there is God now condemning them.
[01:07:38] Proper enablement. If we talked about motivation as we have so much of the hour, we need to say we didn't get to the fourth question in application what to do, where to why? Primarily out of love for God, but how do people do what they're supposed to do? In order to provide proper enablement, we have to answer all four questions of application. Not only what and where, but also why and how. Now, the reason we spent so much time on the Y is because of this next little line here. The Y is the how. We answer the why question, why should we serve God? Because when people truly grasp the love of God, they have his strength. The reason that sin has power over us is that we love it. If sin has no attraction to us, then it has no power over us. Do you believe that if Cynthia not attract you at all, you would have no power over you? How we undermine the power of sin is by filling the heart with love for Christ, revealing the grace. That is why we love him. The way John Owen wrote. The way that you remove the power of anything is by taking away its life source. The life source of sin is our love for it. Take that away. And sin has no power. How do you take away love for sin? You fill up with love for Christ. The why. Becomes the how as people are filled up with love with to see why they should be serving him. And they understand it is his love that has been exaggerated from the text. Then ultimately it is that love for him that is granting them power. That means when we are motivating people, we want to make sure people know how to plug into Christ Grace That is, they offer confession, by the way, that is so that they will experience his grace.
[01:09:54] Not so they will gain it. How many people think that if I don't repent of my sin, I don't have grace? What's the trouble with that kind of thinking? How many of you have repented enough for your sin? Good. No hands. Because if you think that my repentance gains God's grace, then you will live guilty all your life. You must know that you already exist in this state of grace. You already exist before the smile of God. And while you may not experience that grace as rebellion takes you from it, it is not your confession that gains his grace. It's when allows you to experience it. A fresh grace is also helping people to claim their Sonship, to know what it means to be in Christ and knowing God's provision for them. But the power must go to that line particularly. Where does the power come from? They should be told to pray for the Holy Spirit. Yeah, that's part of it. But it is also beginning to understand what it means to walk in faith. When the Puritans talked about I need about three more minutes, guys, when the Puritans talked about what would give people power for the Christian life, they talked about the walk of faith. And for many of us, we think the walk of faith is somehow, you know, like doing exercise. We're going to pump up a lot of faith so we can really walk in faith. And they mean exactly the opposite. They said the Walk of Faith was coming to the scriptures as a little child. And simply believing what it said. That would actually give people power is to look at the word and simply believe like a child that it was true and that what it says is greater.
[01:11:36] Is he the tenu that he then he lives in the world that many Christians think I can't overcome. Sin is just the way I made it. God made me this way. It's probably his fault. Instead of simply believing what the Bible says, you are overcomes greater seeded sinew than he is in the world. If you don't believe that you have power over sin, you have already been defeated. But to be a child. He says it. So I believe it doesn't feel that way. I don't think I have power that strong. So. But he says I have power. So I am simply going to believe it. And that means we believe that we are a new creation in Christ Jesus, that there was a time that we were not able not to sin. Remember that known number. But now I am able because the resurrection power of Jesus Christ is in me, the same power that raised Jesus from the dead is in me. And because of that, I have power, not like the world. And I am just going to believe that as an act of faith, I am simply going to believe that what the Bible says is true. And in believing it, there is power. And that power gets exerted when we then begin to nurture the new affections. Thomas Chalmers wrote it long ago. The explosive power of a new affection following in the path of John Own, saying As we are filled up with love for Christ, it is expelling love for the world to be that tank, for God's love that is being filled up is going to drive out the oxygen of sin. So we begin to recognize whole new ways of approaching the Christian life, for instance, the love building versus the points earning use of Christian disciplines.
[01:13:29] You know, we know that so many times we are going to say to people, you need to read your Bible more, you need to pray, you need to associate. But why do most people, even in the church think they're doing that?