Vol. 32, No. 9 September, 2008
CHRIST, THE SAVIOUR OF SINNERS. (Romans 1-5)
By Dr. George Mills
1. Man is a SINNER.
2. Christ is The SAVIOUR.
3. Faith is the SUBSTANCE.
As I have stated before, I believe that the Greatest Book in the Bible is the Book of Romans. We have been going through this wonderful Book on Sunday mornings here at Yukon Baptist Church. I trust that we are learning much. Three great truths stand out in these verses:
1. Man is a SINNER.
We do not like to hear that, but the truth is, we do not have a skin problem in the world, we have a SIN problem. We are sinners in Character, in Conduct, and in Credibility.
The first three Chapters, (1:1-3:23) are like a court scene with the prosecuting Attorney presenting his case. In Ch. 1, the gentiles are guilty. “They are without excuse.” (1:20. We are reminded that the list of repulsive sins
in Ro. 1:21-32 began with “They knew God.” And then the focus turns to
the Jews in Ch. 2. The verdict; “Therefore thou art inexcusable O man.” (Ro 2:1) The Jews and Gentiles are without excuse. Then in Ch. 3, he turns to the entire world and lists the indictments. There is a long list of sin recorded there. What is the verdict of
this trial? Can the Judge of all the earth find in His heart to be lenient with His creation? Not at all, “For ALL have sinned and come short of the Glory of God.” (Ro. 3:23)…
(A) MAN IS A SINNER IN HIS CHARACTER, Speaking of his INWARD ATTITUDES. This is not a new doctrine or something new that Paul has thought up. Time and time again Paul states, “IT IS WRITTEN,” Or “WHAT SAITH THE SCRIPTURES?” meaning, the Old Testament Scriptures. In Ro. 3:10, “As it is written, there is none righteous, no not one.” He is quoting Psalm 14:1-3. Notice in that Psalm that man says “IN HIS HEART there is no God.” Man, without God, may not be a Professing Atheist, but IN HIS HEART he is a Practicing Atheist. Some men are practicing Atheists on Monday through Saturday, and on Sunday, well, that’s a different story. The HEART is deceitful
above all things, and desperately wicked, who can know it?” (Jer. 17:9). “For out of the abundance of the HEART the mouth speaketh.” (Mt 12:34). “Their throat is an open sepulchre, and with their tongues they have used deceit, the poison of asps is under their lips. Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.” (3:13-14). That is a quotation from Psa. 10:7
(B) MAN IS A SINNER IN HIS CONDUCT. Speaking of his OUTWARD ACTIONS. “Their feet are swift to shed blood. Destruction and misery are in their ways. And the way of peace they have not known.” (Ro 3:15-17) That is a quotation from Isa 59:7-8. This is a description of man from the beginning.
Some ask, “What’s wrong with man? It seems like he gets worse every day.” You are right! And man will proceed on his downward walk away from God. “Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and against His anointed saying; let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh, and the Lord shall have them in derision. Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath and sore displeasure.” (Psa 2:1-5). God is not wanted in our governments, our educational institutions, our Courts, in fact, He is not welcome in most homes across our land. Sad, but true. Man tries to replace God with Humanism, or one of the many other “gods of this world.” And, as we have stated, man gets worse. Will he ever learn? I think not! There is a restless spirit within man that only the Prince of Peace can change.
3. MAN IS A SINNER IN HIS CREDIBILITY. Speaking of his UPWARD AFFECTION. Man has no fondness for God. “They did not like to retain God in their knowledge.” (Ro 1:28). Again, let us be reminded that the road that ended in the depths of depravity of Romans 1:21-32, began with, “They knew God.” and “Neither were they thankful.” (Ro 1:21).
If we really want to know what’s wrong with man, it is recorded that “God gave them up.” (Ro 1:24) God gave them up, to uncleanness through the lusts of their own HEARTS,” (Ro 1:26) “God gave them over to a reprobate mind to do those things which are not convenient” (Ro 1:28), as listed in v29-32. Thank God that He is a Loving, Kind, Merciful, forgiving God. He has provided for us a full and free salvation.
2. CHRIST is the SAVIOUR.
He is not “A” Saviour as one of many, He is THE Saviour. Recently, I was listening to the reading of a “religious poll.” The fact that stayed with me is that 57% of Evangelicals believe that there are other ways to God, that is, other than Christ. Other groups mentioned in the poll were about on the same level with their belief. More and more people are beginning to adopt the idea of “other ways to God.” Oprah Winfrey stated that “there are more ways to God than Christ alone.” I am a Fundamentalist. I do not recall where we ranked on that list. On the Catholic channel, a priest stated, “Mary is equal to Christ in redemption, but on a lower level.”(Whatever that means.)
CHRIST IS THE SAVIOUR. “There is none other name under Heaven given among men whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12). A forsaking of sound doctrine, and the acceptance of some Hollywood “stars” with their ideas, and some high profile sports figures, etc, and of course, liberal “preachers” without any regard as to their doctrinal position has helped in opening the flood gate of new doctrines. KNOW YOUR BIBLE! Some things sound good, but will not hold up under Biblical scrutiny. The Bible is very clear. There is ANOTHER SPIRIT, ANOTHER GOSPEL, ANOTHER JESUS. (2Cor. 11:4). There is not another who gave himself for the sin of the world. There is not another who came forth bodily from the tomb. There is not another sacrifice for sin. There is not another who pleased the Father in all things. Many “gospels” are being preached today, but ONLY the Gospel of Jesus Christ can save the poor sinner from the PENALTY and POWER of sin. “For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for IT is the power of God unto Salvation to everyone that believeth, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” (Ro. 1:16).
3. FAITH is the SUBSTANCE. “The basic ingredient of anything.” “Now Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Heb. 11:1) I realize that in the WILDERNESS, I have referred to the Salvation experience of Abraham, (Gen. 15:6) many times. Paul asked the question in Romans 4:1-2, “What work did Abraham do in order to earn his Salvation?” That work could not have been circumcision, for that would be about 17 years later. That work could not have been in keeping the Law, because the Law was still 430 years later. The answer, NO WORK saved Abraham. Abraham was saved BY FAITH WHEN he believed God, (Gen 15:6, Ro 4:3,8,22, Gal. 3:6-8, James 2:23). Paul knew that he would face Jews wherever he traveled. The Jews would boast that they were children of Abraham. Paul also knew that the issue of salvation had to be settled once for all, for Jew and Gentile. In his statement, “Abraham believed God and it was counted to him for righteousness.” (Ro 4:3) Paul is telling us that everybody who is saved, are all saved the SAME WAY. When Abraham believed God, he was saved. NOT when he believed IN God, or believed ABOUT God, but when he BELIEVED GOD! We are saved when we believe the message about the Cross, the burial, and the Bodily Resurrection of Christ.
Now, as I have stated, there are many doctrines, many ideas, new doctrines born every day, new “bibles” philosophies, humanism, baptisms, works, various “ways” to Heaven, etc. But “Salvation is of the Lord” And if Salvation is the Lord’s Salvation, then we must receive Salvation the Lord’s way, that is, BY FAITH. The Lord’s way of Salvation in Abraham’s day, and any day in history, up to and including this day, is Salvation by Faith alone. God saves the lost sinner WHEN he/she believes God. FAITH is the SUBSTANCE. God hears the faintest cry of the weakest heart that believes Him. He honors that simple cry of Faith. Some say, “That’s too simple.” May I say unto you that Jesus took in Himself all of the sin, all of the hurt, all of the labor, all of the trying, He took these in Himself, died on His Cross, walked forth from the grave and said unto man, Salvation is offered, as a free gift, receive it by Faith alone. “But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on Him that raised up our Lord Jesus from the dead. Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised for our justification.” (Ro 4:25-26).
Now, let me, for a moment, re-say what I have said…
1. MAN IS A SINNER. It matters not
what our race, creed, color, nationality, moral, or social standing, very poor, or very rich, educated, or illiterate, it matters not who we are, or where we came from, MAN IS A SINNER.
2. CHRIST IS THE SAVIOUR. He is
NOT “A” Saviour, as one of many, He is THE SAVIOUR. We cannot invent our own, or substitute another. He said, “I am THE Way, THE Truth, and THE Life. No man cometh unto the Father but by me.” (Jn 14:6).
3. FAITH IS THE SUBSTANCE. We must believe what God has said, and receive His Gift of Salvation by Faith. The wonder of it all is, that the Faith God honors is, IMPUTED FAITH. When we hear and believe the Message of the Gospel, God gives us that Faith. “For by Grace are ye saved through FAITH and that not of yourselves, it (Faith) is the gift of God. Not of works lest any man should boast.” (Eph 2:8-9).
Are you saved today? If not, you can be. Just tell God in your own words that you receive Christ as your own personal Saviour. I cannot tell you words to say. God will hear the cry of your Repentant HEART. “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His Name.” (Jn 1:12).
Begin TODAY to live FOREVER!
BY GRACE, THROUGH FAITH
By Pastor George Mills
“For by Grace are ye saved through Faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the Gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Eph 2:8-9)
It is by Grace, through FAITH alone,
To pay for sin? God’s only Son. Forever settled, the Work is done.
It is by Grace, through Faith alone.
Not a merit wrought by me,
The Blood of Christ, my only plea.
Not by a race that I have won,
But by the Work of God’s own Son.
Not by a work of my own hand,
But only by Salvation’s Plan.
Not by a sorrow that I may show,
Only Faith can make me know;
My Sin forgiven, the stain is gone,
The Work is finished, Christ alone!
For no one else could sin atone,
It is by Grace, through FAITH alone.
THINK ABOUT IT… In His silence as the Sacrificial Lamb of God, Christ silenced every other mouth. “That every mouth may be stopped, and all the world become guilty before God.” Man can say nothing. Man has no reply, no argument that will stand.
Christ died for me, that I might Live through Him!
THE PURITY OF THE WORD OF GOD.
By Pastor George Mills
The Ministry of the WILDERNESS Evangelistic Association has always been dedicated to the cause of Christ in reaching as much of the world as we can, and at the same time, maintaining our firm stand or position on separation from apostate religion or anything that is not of sound Biblical Doctrine. I am convinced that the Bible (KJB) stands, and will withstand every test as in the past, and will remain as the Monarch of books. I trust that we can help sound an alarm in opposing the flood of new “bibles” being offered today. As we have stated, “There is nothing wrong with your Bible.
Now, what should our attitude toward the Bible be? Just to list a few things…
1. LOVE IT. “O how I love Thy Law. It is my meditation all the day. Thou through Thy Commandments hast made me wiser than mine enemies.” (Psa 119:97-98. Love your Bible. Just think of the sacrifices that were made to get the Bible to us. I think of William Tyndale who gave his life in getting the Bible to the next generation. He was burned alive praying, “Oh God, open the eyes of the King of England.” By the way, his death was not over the modern CRITICAL TEXT from which this flood of “bibles” come from. That was still 300 years in the future. Tyndale’s death was over the RECEIVED TEXT. The text passed up through the centuries, and on to us.
Love your Bible. Great men paid the supreme price to get it to us. I once heard about a young blind girl who loved her Bible. Her Bible was a Braille Bible. She read it with her finger tips. She began to notice that the nerves in her finger tips could no longer sense the raised dots in her Bible. One day she picked up her Bible, she thought, for the last time. She placed her Bible against her lips to kiss it goodbye. She noticed that her lips were very sensitive, and that indeed, she could read the raised dots with her lips. Now, as she reads her Bible, it is as though she is kissing Her Bible. What a beautiful picture of the believer loving and feasting on the Word of God. Love your Bible.
2. LEARN IT. “Thy Word have I hid in mine heart that I might not sin against Thee.” (Psa. 119:110). Don’t just read it, LEARN IT! Study it. There are many pleasant hours in store for the believer who will develop a systematic study of the Bible. “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” (Mt 4:4). Now, we cannot learn the Bible if we do not know what and where the Word is. Get this issue settled in your life. We have God’s Word in the King James Bible. God has confirmed that. We do not have to look for it, or refer to some “modern version” The Bible situation today reminds me of the days of young King Josiah. He sent Shapan the scribe to Hilkiah. The High Priest with instructions to clean out the Temple. This Great Temple that once glistened had become a warehouse for storage of junk the priests of Baal used. While they were cleaning out the Temple, they uncovered a copy of the Law of God under all that junk. And so it is today. The Bible (KJB) has become lost under all of this ‘religious junk” of today. (2Kings 22). Take your Bible and develop a systematic Bible study. Don’t get into the habit of reading a verse here, and another verse over there. While that may be good, you will not be able to learn much in using that method. Begin a study in the Book of Romans. What a wonderful Book. Begin reading Chapter 1. Read a few verses, and then re-read until you have a good basic understanding of those verses. Work your way slowly, prayerfully through that wonderful Book. Learn it. I do not recommend that you get one of these new “study bibles.” They are produced by a man, and echoing that man’s opinion. Now, I am not selling bibles. We have nothing to sell. We have offered our literature, Tracts, etc, at no cost. I have found that Dr. D.A. Waite. Of The Bible For Today, Collingswood, N.J. has produced a fine Bible; THE DEFINED KING JAMES BIBLE. Dr. Waite offers no footnotes. He DEFINES uncommon words. Each Book of his Bible ends with a page to help the reader with verbs and tenses, thee’s and thou’s and words ending with “eth” (believeth) etc. Very helpful.
Learn your Bible. You will learn about yourself, about human nature, and about God and His plan for the ages. In the Bible, you have the Mind of God. Learn to know Christ better. The Bible says, “In whom (Christ) are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” (Col. 3:2)
3. LIVE IT. Plan and pattern your life by what God says in His Word. If you try to live like this group, or try to please that group, you will get nowhere but confused. The Bible says, “Be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind.” (Ro 12:2). The more we learn of Christ, the less attractive the “dazzle” of this world becomes.. We are not to be “holier than thou,” but we are citizens of Heaven. Now, live like it. Let each of us ask, “Does my life please Christ?” If Christ is reigning on the inside, the outside will bear witness to that fact.
4. LOYALTY TO IT. “Earnestly contending for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” (Jude 3). Defend it, Contend for it, Preach it, proclaim it. Since I first got saved so many years ago I have not changed one iota about the Word of God, nor do I plan to change. These who follow the path of the CRITICAL TEXT from which these new “versions” come from, can’t seem to be able to find the Bible. They keep looking for it. “Maybe this verse in the N.I.V., or that verse in the N.A.S.V, or perhaps the AMP, or the Holman Bible, or the C.E.V. or the N.K.J.V.” The keep looking, but they can’t find it. There’s more coming. There are just too many to mention. Some pastors cannot come to their pulpit except they being several “versions with them. Don’t fall for this junk. BE LOYAL TO THE BIBLE. (KJB).
5. LOOSE IT. Meaning “to let loose” “to set free” “to release” Send it out. Send it to your family, to the neighbors, to everyone. Loose it. Send it to the world. That’s what we’re trying to do here at the WILDERNESS Ministries. Let us be reminded that the “Gospel of Christ is the power of God unto Salvation to everyone that believeth, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” (Ro. 1:16). There is nothing wrong with your Bible. A few years ago, someone sent me a photograph of my Great Grandfather. The Photo was taken, I believe just after the civil war. Perhaps around 1870. In that photograph, my Grandfather was sitting in a chair, and on his left knee he proudly displayed a large Bible. “HOLY BIBLE” can be clearly seen. I understand that my Grandfather was a lay preacher. The one thing that I want to point out is this; If I had the Bible that was on my Grandfather’s knee to compare it with my Bible today, these Bibles would agree, word for word. The Bible does not change. “Forever O Lord, Thy Word is settled in Heaven.” (Too bad men can’t settle it down here.)
“Now preacher, don’t you think that you’re just trying to stir up trouble among believers?” Not so. I was minding my own business, loving and preaching the Bible, until some began to tell me that the Bible is faulty. My Bible is just fine. If there is fault with the Bible, then we have problems. Thank God, I have no problem!
WHAT LACK I YET?
“And behold, one came and said unto Him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And He said, Why callest thou me good, there is none good but one, that is God. But if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments. He said unto Him, which?
The young man said “All these things have I kept from my youth up, WHAT LACK I YET?” (Mt 19:16-26)
This young man went away from Christ sorrowful, for he had great possessions. Let me share with you some things right, and some things wrong with this young man.
1. Keeping the commandments will not save anybody. The commandments reveal the knowledge of sin.
2. A good moral life will not save anybody. This young man confessed that he did not commit adultery, or lie, or steal. He honored his parents. This is good, but not good enough.
3. Some knowledge of the Scriptures will not save anybody. This young man was evidently very familiar with the Scriptures. The Scriptures lead us to Christ.
Christ’s answer to this young man revealed his problem…He had great possessions.
1. There is nothing wrong with possessions, they must not possess us. His possessions were his god.
2. This young man had the idea that Eternal Life depended on something he did, or was able to do.
3. This young man addressed Christ a “good master” He saw Christ as just another teacher. We must see Him as Lord. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.”
He went away sorrowful. No one walks away from Christ happy. The worst thing he could have done was to walk away. We are never better when we walk away. Our heart just becomes harder. Each time Christ is rejected, that heart becomes harder. “Today, if you will hear His voice, harden not your heart.”
WHAT LACK I YET? The one thing he was missing, he walked away from. THAT ONE THING IS CHRIST.