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  • Sep 13 / 2020
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Pastor Kang, Sermons, Who is God?

The fruit of the knowledge of good and evil that God gave us (Genesis 3:8-11)

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<The fruit of the knowledge of good and evil that God gave us>

8 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.

9 But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?“

10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.“

11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

Genesis 3:8-11

0. The reason for existence with the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil

Today’s sermon title is “The fruit of the knowledge of good and evil that God gave us.”

I’m going to share from the Bible, Genesis Chapter 3 to understand the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil. But “the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil” is too long a name. So from now on, Let’s just call this “The fruit”.

Why did God create The fruit?

If he did not create it, people could have lived a happy life forever without sin, right?

There are two main questions about The fruit. These two questions reveal a contradiction about God.

  1. The First question is: Is God almighty (and all knowing) but not good?
    • If God is almighty (and all knowing), he must already know that humans would eat The fruit someday. According to this assumption, God must have created The fruit in order to make humans commit a sin, right?
  2. The Second question is: Is God rather good but not almighty (and all knowing)?
    • Because God is good, he might have expected that human beings would always obey God. But if he is not almighty (and all knowing), he couldn’t have known that humans would commit a sin, right?

Actually, in order To know God and ourselves exactly, we have to know the true meaning of The fruit.

1. Serpent (Trouble maker, clever one)

Suddenly, A serpent appeared in front of the woman, Eve. He was a very clever trouble maker. He altered and manipulated the words of God to create a big problem.

Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, `You must not eat from any tree in the garden`?“ Amen.

Genesis Chapter 3 verse 1

The serpent never talked about The fruit from the beginning.

He didn’t want to reveal his true purpose.

2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden,

3 but God did say, `You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.`“

4 “You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman.

5 “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.“ Amen.

Genesis Chapter 3 verses 2 to 5

The crafty serpent tempted her and stimulated her desires. So Eve gave in to temptation, indulged her desires, and forgot that God is her Creator. Since she thought that she could be the master of her own life, she thought first of her own benefits. Therefore, in that moment, she chose to turn away from God. She might have thought that God was acting like a person who interfered with her interests.

In the end, together with her husband, Adam, they both indulged in their desires. Thus, They didn’t obey God, but gave in to temptation and to their own desires.

2. Human Beings

What is a human being?

If God didn’t create The fruit, could the first people have obeyed God forever? Would they have obeyed forever?

2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden,

3 but God did say, `You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.`” Amen.

Genesis Chapter 3 verses 2 to 3

Human beings usually live their lives for their own benefit and comfort. The first people didn’t eat The fruit. But that was not out of obedience to God. Rather, They couldn’t eat The fruit because they were afraid of death.

Even if there was not The fruit that led to the Original Sin, People who live their lives for their benefit eventually will not obey God someday.

Why did the serpent visit a woman who was alone?

This is because human beings easily fall into temptation when they are alone.

  • After meeting the serpent, Eve’s desire was stimulated and she told her husband about her desire.
  • After meeting Eve, Adam’s desire that he had not known before was also stimulated.

This is not something that happened only in ancient times. The same situation also happens to us still today in modern times.

  • Before mass media and social media was developed, it was easier for people to live with more satisfaction and gratitude for what they had.
  • But as the media and the Internet developed, it became easier to see people who lived better lives than themselves, and people’s jealousy and desires became more stimulated.

Companies advertised that we should have beautiful clothes, fancy cars and big houses for a good life. People could no longer be satisfied with what they had anymore. And so People no longer lived their lives with gratitude. This is Because one man’s desire quickly spreads to all the people.

There are good desires and bad desires.

  • It is a good desire if we live our lives to glorify God above all other things.
  • On the other hand, If we live our lives to glorify ourselves above all other things, this is a bad desire.

More specifically, this desire to glorify ourselves above all other things is a desire to become like God who already IS above all other things and has and controls everything.

3. Sin (Selfish desires)

6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.

7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.

Genesis Chapter 3 verses 6 to 7

Those who hold onto bad desires are no longer looking at the Word of God. These arrogant people sinned by eating The fruit. And they really did gain knowledge like God. They were able to distinguish good from evil. But it was not a blessing, it was a curse.

Only God has the ultimate power to judge. But when people take the ability to judge, they attack themselves and others with their judgement.

This story is not just about Genesis. Think about the world we live in now. The world we live in is steeped in Materialism, Mammonism. Everyone here, whether you’re a winner or a loser, is anxious about something. There is no peace in God. And there is no peace with God.

However, when we leave judgment up to God, we feel at peace because God takes care of our hearts.

4. The meaning of The fruit (Obedience)

It’s time to finally unravel the secrets of The fruit.

What’s the real meaning of fruit of the knowledge of good and evil?

Let me share two key messages about the Fruit.

4-1 First, The fruit lets us know who we are

The fruit separates us from God. God is free from the fruit, but we have limitations from it. This makes us realize that God is the creator, and we are creations. The fruit makes us remember that our master is God.

So God planted The fruit tree in the center of the garden of Eden so that human beings could see it well, and therefore remember that God is our creator.

So how can we solve the initial two questions that we asked.

  1. First, either God is almighty but not good.
  2. Or Second, God is good but not almighty.

Actually, These two questions are both wrong.

1. First, It is not that God is not good, but rather, God, by his very nature, is perfectly good.

When we look at the Bible as a moral standard, sometimes it can be difficult to understand what God has done. But think about it. God is greater than moral standards. His very nature and character are higher than any moral standard.

2. Second, The reason we have free will and can choose to obey or to sin is because God is almighty and he has the power to judge or forgive.

God wants us to come to him sincerely. So God waits for us to choose the right path again, even when we make the wrong choice. This is God’s perfect personality. God is both a parent and a teacher who loves us and corrects us, and ultimately wants good for us.

4-2 Second, The fruit lets us know that Only God can judge.

When arrogant people take the power to judge, it becomes a curse for them.

People judged themselves and each other and forgot that they were precious children of God. So they calculated their value ​​by the standards of the world, and they became jealous, arrogant, and depressed. They also judge others by their own standards, hurting them, and making their lives hard.

So what we need to do is return the fruit to God and leave judgment up to God. Then the peace of God’s Garden of Eden will return to us.

5. Amazing Grace (The tree of life)

Let’s think about the history of the world for a moment. What happens when a rebel who attempts to establish himself as king fails? He is executed for treason. So were Adam and Eve, in a sense.

They were people who tried to rebel against God to become gods. But our God did not kill them immediately. Rather, He gave them the punishment they could afford, and gave them the opportunity to reflect and repent.

God changed the clothes they made out of fig leaves into good leather clothes. And That is not the only grace of God.

Remember, There were two trees in the center of the garden.

  1. One was the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
  2. The other was the Tree of Life.

In Genesis chapter 3, God said this when the people sinned:

22 And the LORD God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.”

Genesis Chapter 3 verse 22

Therefore, God expelled the people from the Garden of Eden, where there was a tree of Life that gives eternal life. But God, who loves his Creations so deeply, eventually sent the Tree of Life back to us.

This is Jesus Christ!

The man who believes in Jesus is saved from the judgment of God. Because they remember and believe that God is their master. And God acknowledges their faith. This is the grace of God, which is truly amazing grace!

To not eat the fruit in the Garden of Eden, and To believe in Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior. These have the same meaning.  This is because I confess God as my master, and commit my life to wholeheartedly serve and glorify him above all other things.

To us who tried to kill God, to kill Jesus, for our benefit, to become our own gods and masters of our own lives. God has paid us back with everlasting love through his son, Jesus Christ.

Remember, The reason we are likely to leave God and fall into temptation and sin is because we are sinners by birth who act in our own interests, much like the serpent.

So, then Why should we overcome the temptation of Satan and choose God?

Satan always comes to us with temptations that appear to be for our own benefit at first. But when the end comes, they take not only our own interests, but our very lives as well.

However, God is completely different from Satan. God gives us his eternal life Through the death of Jesus Christ because God is the one who created us and is responsible for us to the end.

Let’s say this together!

Let us abandon our sinful desires, and obey our master God!
Let us abandon our sinful desires, and obey our master God!
Let us abandon our sinful desires, and obey our master God!

Our Wonderful God will prepare for the best life for us.

Let’s pray.


2020년 9월 13일 강석권 준목님 설교
하나님께서 우리에게 주신 선악과의 의미
창세기(3장 8~11절)
8.그들이 날이 서늘할 떼에 동산에 거니시는 여호와 하나님의 음성을 듣고 아담과 그 아내가 여호와 하나님의 낯을 피하여 동산 나무 사이에 숨는지라.
9.여호와 하나님이 아담을 부르시며 그에게 이르시되 네가 어디 있느냐?
10.가로되 내가 동산에서 하나님의 소리를 듣고 내가 벗었으므로 두려워하여 숨었나이다.
11.가라사대 누가 너의 벗었음을 네게 고하였느냐 내가 너더러 먹지 말라 명한 그 나무 실과를 네가 먹었느냐?

◉ 에덴동산에 선악과가 존재한 이유는 무엇 때문인가?
오늘 저는 성경 창세기 3장에 나오는 선악과에 대한 것을 함께 나누고자 합니다.

  • 왜 하나님은 선악과를 만들어 놓았을까요?
    만일 하나님께서 선악과를 만들지 않았다면 인간은 죄도 짓지 않고 영원히 행복하게 살 수 있었는데…. 정말 그럴까요?
    ◉ 선악과에 관해서는 아래와 같이 두 가지의 질문을 할 수 있는데, 이 두 가지 질문은 서로 자기 모순적인 질문입니다.
  • 하나님은 전지전능하시지만, 좋으신 하나님은 아니다?
    하나님이 전지전능하시다면 하나님께서는 언젠가 인간이 선악과를 따 먹을 것이라는 것을 당연히 알았을 것이다. 그렇다면, 하나님은 인간이 죄를 짓도록 하기 위해서 선악과를 만들어 놓았음에 틀림없다. 그런가???
  • 하나님은 좋으신 하나님이지만, 결코 전지전능하신 분은 아니다?
    좋으신 하나님이기 때문에 인간이 항상 하나님께 순종할 것이라는 기대를 갖고 있었다. 그러나 그가 전지전능하시지 않기 때문에 인간이 설마 죄를 범할 것이라는 것을 몰랐을 수도 있다. 정말 그런가???
    실제로 하나님과 우리 인간을 정확히 알기 위해서는 먼저 선악과의 진정한 의미를 알아야만 한다.
  1. 뱀(사고뭉치, 교활한 놈)
    어느 날 갑자기 뱀이 하와 앞에 등장한다. 그는 매우 교활한 골치 덩어리이다. 그가 큰 말썽을 부리기 위해서 하나님의 말씀을 조금 바꾸고 수작을 부려 놓았다.
    여호와 하나님이 지으신 들짐승 중에 뱀이 가장 간교하더라 뱀이 여자에게 물어 가로되 하나님이 참으로 너희더러 동산 모든 나무 실과를 먹지 말라 하시더냐? -창세기 3:1
    뱀은 처음부터 선악과의 이야기를 꺼내지 않았다. 그는 자기의 진짜 의도를 여자가 알아차리기를 원치 않았다.
    여자가 뱀에게 말하되 동산 나무의 실과를 우리가 먹을 수 있으나 동산 중앙에 있는 나무의 실과는 하나님의 말씀에 너희는 먹지도 말고 만지지도 말라 너희가 죽을까 하노라 하셨느니라. 뱀이 여자에게 이르되 너희가 결코 죽지 아니하리라. 너희가 그것을 먹는 날에는 너희 눈이 밝아 하나님과 같이 되어 선악을 알줄을 하나님이 아심이라. -창세기 3:2~5
    교활한 뱀은 여자를 유혹하고 여자의 욕망을 자극하였다. 그래서 하와는 유혹에 못 이겨 욕망에 빠져서 하나님이 자기의 창조자라는 것을 잊고 말았다. 그 순간 그는 자기의 인생의 주인이 자기 자신이며 따라서, 자기의 이익을 최우선으로 생각했다. 그래서 그는 하나님으로부터 멀어지는 선택을 하고 말았다. 그 순간 하나님도 인간처럼 자신의 이익을 위해 자기를 침범할 것이라고 생각했다. 결국 자기 남편인 아담과 함께 욕망에 지고 말았다. 그래서 유혹에 넘어지고 욕망에 빠져서 하나님께 불순종하고 말았다.
  2. 인간이란 무엇인가?
    하나님이 선악과를 만들지 않았다면 첫 사람은 영원히 하나님께 순종하였을까? 그들이 과연 영원이 순종했을까?
    여자가 뱀에게 말하되 동산 나무의 실과를 우리가 먹을 수 있으나 동산 중앙에 있는 나무의 실과는 하나님의 말씀에 너희는 먹지도 말고 만지지도 말라 너희가 죽을까 하노라 하셨느니라. -창세기 3:2,3
    인간은 보통 자신의 이익과 안위를 위해 산다. 첫 사람은 선악과를 먹지 않았다. 그렇지만 하나님께 불순종하지도 않았다. 그들은 다만 죽음이 두려워서 선악과를 따먹을 수 없었다. 그들을 원죄로 이끄는 선악과가 없었다고 하더라도 자기의 이익만 추구하는 삶을 사는 인간은 결국 언젠가는 하나님께 불순종하게 될 것이다.
    ◉ 왜 뱀은 혼자 있는 여자에게 찾아왔을까?
    인간은 혼자 있을 때 유혹에 빠지기 쉽기 때문이다.
  • 뱀을 만난 후, 하와의 욕망이 자극되었고 자기 남편에게도 자기의 욕망을 이야기했다.
  • 하와를 만난 후, 아담도 전에는 알지 못했던 욕망에 자극되었다.
    이러한 연쇄반응은 옛날에만 일어나는 일이 아니다. 오늘날에도 여전히 이러한 상황이 일어나고 있다.
  • 대중매체와 개인매체가 발전하기 전에도 사람들은 자기가 가진 것에 만족하지 않고 더 많은 만족을 얻으려고 했었다.
  • 미디어와 인터넷이 발전함에 따라 자기보다 더 잘 사는 사람을 쉽게 접하게 됨으로써 사람들의 질투심과 욕망이 더욱 자극을 받게 되었다. 회사는 좋은 삶을 위해서 더 좋은 옷과 멋진 차와 큰 집을 가져야 한다고 광고하고 있다. 사람들은 더 이상 자기가 가진 것에 만족할 수가 없다. 그래서 사람들은 더 이상 감사하는 삶을 살지 않고 있다. 이렇게 한 사람의 욕망이 빠르게 모든 사람에게 퍼져나가고 있다.
    ◉ 좋은 욕망과 나쁜 욕망이 존재하는가?
  • 사람이 다른 무엇보다도 하나님의 영광을 위한 삶을 산다면 그것은 좋은 욕망이다.
  • 그러나 다른 무엇보다도 자신의 영광을 위한 삶을 산다면 그것은 나쁜 욕망이다.
    더 구체적으로 이야기하면, 다른 무엇보다도 자신의 영광을 위한 이러한 욕망은 이미 자기가 하나님과 같이 되어서 모든 것 위에서 있으면서 모든 것을 통제하겠다는 것이다.
  1. 죄(이기적인 욕망)
    여자가 그 나무를 본즉 먹음직도 하고 보암직도 하고 지혜롭게 할 만큼 탐스럽기도 한 나무인지라 여자가 그 실과를 따먹고 자기와 함께한 남편에게도 주매 그도 먹은지라 이에 그들의 눈이 밝아 자기들의 몸이 벗은 줄을 알고 무화과나무 잎을 엮어 치마를 하였더라. – 창세기 3:6,7
    나쁜 욕망에 사로잡힌 사람들은 더 이상 하나님의 말씀을 듣지 않습니다. 이러한 무례한 사람들은 선악과를 따먹는 죄를 짓게 되었습니다. 그리고 실제로 하나님처럼 지식을 얻게 되었습니다. 그들은 선과 악을 구별할 수 있었습니다. 그러나 그것은 축복이 아니라, 저주였습니다.
    ◉ 하나님만이 심판을 할 수 있는 궁극적인 능력을 갖고 있습니다. 사람이 심판하는 능력을 갖게 되면, 그것은 그들 자신과 다른 사람들을 공격하게 됩니다. 이 이야기는 단지 창세기에만 국한되지 않습니다. 현재 우리가 살고 있는 세상을 생각해 봅시다. 이 세상은 물질만능주의 금전만능주의에 심각하게 빠져있습니다. 여기에 있는 모든 사람들 승리자이거나 패배자이거나 모두 무엇인가를 걱정하면서 살고 있습니다. 하나님이 있을 곳은 없습니다. 하나님과 함께 평안을 누릴 수 있는 곳은 아무데도 없습니다. 그러나 우리가 우리의 심판을 하나님께 맡기면 하나님이 우리의 마음을 어루만져 주시기 때문에 평안을 느끼게 됩니다.
  2. 선악과의 의미(순종)
    드디어 선악과의 비밀을 풀 시간이 왔습니다. 선악과의 진정한 의미는 무엇일까요? 선악과에 관한 두 가지 핵심 의미를 함께 나누어 봅시다.
    4-1 첫 째로 선악과는 우리가 누구인지를 알게 해 줍니다.
    선악과는 하나님과 인간을 구별시켜 줍니다. 하나님은 선악과로부터 자유롭지만, 인간은 선악과로부터 자유롭지 않습니다. 선악과는 하나님이 창조주이고 인간은 피조물임을 깨닫게 합니다. 선악과는 하나님이 우리의 주인이라는 것을 상기시켜 줍니다. 그래서 하나님은 에덴동산 중앙에 선악과를 심었고 사람들이 잘 볼 수 있도록 해 두었습니다. 그럼, 어떻게 우리의 처음에 이야기했던 두 가지 질문을 풀 수 있을까요?
  • 첫 번째 질문, 하나님은 전지전능하지만, 좋으신 분은 아니다.
  • 두 번째 질문, 하나님은 좋으신 분이지만, 전지전능하지 않다.
    사실, 두 가지 모두 다 잘못된 질문입니다.
    첫 번째, 하나님은 좋으신 분이 아닌 것이 아니고 오히려 하나님 본체로서 완벽하게 좋으신 분입니다. 우리가 성경을 읽으면서 도덕적인 기준으로 보면, 하나님이 행하신 일을 이해하기가 어려울 수 있습니다. 그러나 생각해 봅시다. 하나님은 도덕적인 기준보다 더 크십니다. 그분의 본체가 어떤 도덕적인 기준보다 높으신 분입니다.
    두 번째, 우리가 자유 의지를 가지고 순종할 것인가 죄를 지을 것인가를 선택하는 이유는 하나님이 전지전능하기 때문이고 그분만이 심판과 용서를 하시기 때문입니다. 하나님은 우리가 진심으로 그분께 다가오기를 바라십니다. 그래서 하나님은 잘못된 선택을 할 때에도 우리가 바른 길을 선택할 때까지 기다리십니다. 이것이 하나님의 완벽한 인격입니다. 하나님은 우리 부모님이나 선생님처럼 우리를 사랑하고 우리를 바르게 가르쳐서 궁극적으로 우리가 좋은 길을 가기를 원하십니다.
    4-2 두 번째로 선악과는 하나님만이 심판할 수 있다는 것을 우리에게 가르쳐 줍니다.
    무례한 인간이 심판하는 능력을 갖게 된다면 그것은 인간에게 저주가 될 것입니다. 사람들이 자기 자신을 심판하고 다른 사람들을 심판한다면, 그들이 귀중한 하나님의 자녀라는 것을 잊어버립니다. 그래서 사람들이 세상의 기준으로 사람을 판단하고 질투하고 무례를 행하고 남을 억압하게 됩니다. 사람들이 다른 사람들을 자기의 기준으로 판단하면, 사람에게 상처를 주고 그들의 삶을 힘들게 합니다. 따라서, 우리에게 필요한 것은 선악과는 하나님께 돌려드리고 심판도 하나님께 맡겨야 합니다. 그러면 하나님의 에덴동산의 평화를 찾을 수 있을 것입니다.
  1. 놀라운 은혜(생명나무)
    잠시 세계의 역사에 관해 생각해 봅시다. 왕이 실패를 해서 신하가 왕이 되려고 반란을 시도하면 무슨 일이 일어났습니까? 그는 반역죄로 처형됩니다. 아담과 하와도 마찬가집니다. 그들도 하나님이 되려고 하나님께 반란을 시도했습니다. 그러나 하나님은 그들을 즉시 처형하지 않았습니다. 오히려 하나님은 그들이 견딜 수 있는 형벌을 주고 반성하고 회개할 기회를 주었습니다. 하나님은 아담과 하와에게 무화가 이파리로 만든 옷 대신에 가죽 옷을 만들어 입혔습니다. 그것 말고도 또 하나의 하나님의 은혜가 더 있습니다. 에덴동산 중앙에 두 가지 나무가 있었다는 것을 기억해 보십시오.
  • 하나는 선악과입니다.
  • 또 하나는 생명나무입니다.
    창세기3장 22절에서 여호와 하나님이 가라사대 보라 이 사람이 선악을 아는 일에 우리 중 하나 같이 되었으니 그가 그 손을 들어 생명나무 실과도 따먹고 영생할까 하노라 하시고….
    그래서 하나님이 사람들을 영생을 주는 생명나무가 있는 에덴동산에서 추방해 버렸습니다. 그렇지만 피조물을 깊이 사랑하시는 하나님이 결국 우리 인간에게 생명나무를 보내주셨다.
    ◉ 생명나무는 예수 그리스도!
    예수를 믿는 인간은 하나님의 심판으로부터 구원을 받습니다. 왜냐하면 그들은 하나님이 그들의 주인임을 기억하고 믿기 때문입니다. 그리고 하나님은 그들의 믿음을 아십니다. 이것이 하나님의 은혜이고 이것이 바로 하나님의 놀라운 은혜입니다. 에덴동산의 선악과를 먹지 않기 위해서는 내 자신의 주인이고 구원자이신 예수님을 믿는 것입니다. 선악과를 따먹지 않는 것과 예수를 믿는 것은 같은 의미입니다. 이것이 바로 내가 하나님을 나의 주인으로 고백하고 온 마음을 바쳐 하나님을 섬기고 다른 어떤 것보다도 하나님의 영광을 위하여 살아야 하는 이유입니다. 하나님을 죽이고 예수님을 죽이고 우리 자신만의 이익을 위해서 우리가 스스로 하나님이 되고 우리가 자기 인생의 주인이 되어 살려고 했습니다. 그러나 하나님은 영원한 사랑을 가지고 자기의 아들이신 예수 그리스도를 통해서 우리의 죄악을 모두 청산해 주셨습니다. 명심하십시오. 우리가 쉽게 하나님을 떠나서 유혹에 빠져 죄를 짓는 이유는 뱀처럼 우리 자신만의 이익을 위해서 살기 때문입니다.
  • 그럼, 어째서 우리가 사탄의 유혹을 극복하고 하나님을 선택해야만 합니까?
    사탄이 항상 우리에게 찾아와서 유혹할 때는 처음에는 우리 자신의 이익을 가지고 나타납니다. 그러나 결국에는 사탄이 우리 자신의 이익뿐 아니라 우리 생명까지도 빼앗아 갑니다.
    그러나 하나님은 사탄과 완전히 다릅니다. 하나님은 예수 그리스도의 죽음을 통해서 우리에게 영생을 주십니다. 하나님이 우리를 만드셨기 때문에 우리를 끝까지 책임을 지십니다.
    함께 세 번 외쳐봅시다!!!!
    우리의 죄스런 욕망을 버리고 주인이신 하나님께 순종합시다!!!!
    우리의 죄스런 욕망을 버리고 주인이신 하나님께 순종합시다!!!!
    우리의 죄스런 욕망을 버리고 주인이신 하나님께 순종합시다!!!!
    감사합니다.
  • Aug 11 / 2019
  • Comments Off on REST (Hebrews 3:19-4:11, Matthew 11:28-30)
Hebrews: The Superiority of Christ, Pastor Heo, Sermons

REST (Hebrews 3:19-4:11, Matthew 11:28-30)

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REST

Hebrews 3:19-4:11, Matthew 11:28-30 (Pastor Heo)

3:19 So we see that they were not able to enter [the rest of God], because of their unbelief.

A Sabbath-Rest for the People of God

4:1 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. 2 For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith. 3 Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said,

“So I declared on oath in my anger,

‘They shall never enter my rest.’ ” And yet his work has been finished since the creation of the world. 4 For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these words: “And on the seventh day God rested from all his work.” 5 And again in the passage above he says, “They shall never enter my rest.”

6 It still remains that some will enter that rest, and those who formerly had the gospel preached to them did not go in, because of their disobedience. 7 Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today, when a long time later he spoke through David, as was said before:

“Today, if you hear his voice,

do not harden your hearts.” 8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.


Matthew 11:28-30

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”


Matt 11:28-30 = the direct voice of Christ. Maybe many of you already memorized these verses – they are so familiar. Please memorize, meditate, and put them into practice.

As we know, the first generation of Exodus began their migration from Egypt to Canaan with great success – because of the great power and help of God. But they finished in great disaster because of their own unbelief and disobedience.

All of the first generation died in the desert during their 40 year wandering. Only Joshua and Caleb entered the Promised Land because they believed in God.

The story of 12 spies – they explored Canaan for 40 days – spending the same time together – but they had very different reports. What was the difference?

10 people with a bad report – saw only what they saw with their eyes.

Joshua and Caleb saw what they saw through their faith in God.

  • 10 = what is seen
  • 2 = what is unseen (faith)

This is the background.

v. 3:19-4:1

“3:19 So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.

4:1 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it.”

Romans: “Everything that was written was written to give us a lesson so that we may have hope.”

Several thousand years ago, the Israelites lost the rest of God because of their unbelief. But this same rest is still available today. So, the Bible is warning us: “Today if you hear the Word of God, do not harden your hearts.” This is a challenge and encouragement.

Keyword: REST

(How many times do we see it?)

  • 12x

We read 11 verses (in chp 4) and the word “rest” is repeated 11x – in every verse.

In this text, Hebrews is using “rest” in 3 senses:

  1. Peace of God
  2. Entering the Promised Land
  3. God’s rest from work (on the 7th day)

Today, God invites us into his rest.

Enjoy these verses:

Matthew 11:28-30

“28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” “

This is the invitation of God to all human beings to come to him and receive rest. Can you imagine? If you receive this invitation – what an exciting thing!

Imagine if the human President (the blue house in Korea, the white house in US) – if he invites you and calls you to come and have dinner in his house – what an exciting thing! This is the invitation of God – the Maker and Creator of All Things.

Rev 3:23 “Here I am. I stand and knock. If anyone hears my voice, I will come in and eat with you and you with me.” This is not only one meal – but your whole life. This is the invitation of God. “Come to me – let us dine together eternally.”

Are you weary [tired, burned out, exhausted] and burdened? All humans are tired in some ways. Even a kindergarten boy said, “I’m so tired.”

All human beings without God are restless wanderers.

In Genesis – Cain is the first son of Adam – he committed sin against God and went away – but no matter where he tried to go nor what he tried to do, he became a “restless wanderer.” This is a symbol of all humanity without God.

If there is no God in you, you are also a restless wanderer. A life without God is just motion without meaning; activity without direction; events without reason. We need rest.

“Come to me all who are weary and burdened…”

Everyone has his own burden to bear. What’s yours? At least there are 4 common burdens everyone is carrying. Nobody is free from these:

Common Burdens

  1. Sin – the guilt of sin, regrets, shame, bad memories, the past you cannot remove
    • “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God… there is no one righteous, not one… the wages of sin is death.” (Romans)
    • After sin, punishment = hell
    • Whether you know or not, conscious or not, SIN is the heaviest burden. It is heavier than the whole universe.
  2. Problems – difficulties, hardships, pains.
    • As long as we live in this world, we cannot escape from problems.
    • From birth – this is a kind of problem – to death – life is filled with problems – physical, spiritual, mental, social, financial, career, emotional, psychological, school, work, relationship – PROBLEMS…
    • We are all carrying the burden of problems.
  3. Worry – anxiety, fear.
    • Many people miss GREAT opportunities because of fear. Fear is a self-imposed prison that prevents us from becoming what God wants us to be.
    • Worry about job, marriage, life, house, children…
  4. Death – “just as a man is destined to die once and after that face the Judgment…”
    • Physical death is NOT annihilation, not the end. This is just a separation – body from spirit. Spiritual death is separation from God.
    • We have some young men.
    • Do you think you will never die because you are young? No, even children instinctively know they must die someday.
    • I also know. You also know.
    • Everybody knows.
    • But, nobody knows HOW and WHEN.
    • And nobody HAS the experience of death. This is the worry / burden of death.

I know I must die, but I have no experience of this thing – directly nor indirectly.

Q: Have you ever died?

Have you ever tasted death?

Have you heard a first-hand eyewitness account of death from someone who has once died?

NO.

We have no knowledge of this – but we all know we must die someday.

Jesus knows this perfectly and says, “Come to me, and I’ll give you rest.”

Real rest:

Found only in Jesus Christ.

Sometimes we say to each other, “Take a rest” – but we must know that REAL rest is only found in Christ. And we must know the definition / meaning of “what IS rest?”

What is REST?

What is the REAL meaning of REST?

In preparation for this sermon, I looked in the English dictionary.

“rest” = to stop / cease working or movement in order to sleep or recover strength

Many people think rest = not working, sitting down.

But we must know the biblical meaning is VERY different. Let me show you HOW different this meaning is.

I said already first: for the people of Israel, “rest” was the Promised Land. But do you know that when they entered there, they had MUCH MORE to do? They had to fight and conquer enemies, establish a new kingdom to be ruled by God. They had a HUGE assignment / task to do in Canaan. Yet, entering Canaan is called “rest.”

So, rest does not mean “no work” but rather “obtaining promised inheritance.”

Genesis: God rested on the 7th day. This does not mean that God has no more job.

John 5:17 “My Father is always at his work – since the Creation of this world – to this very day, so I too am working for you.”

God rested: “full satisfaction in his mission / job”

Biblical meaning of rest: FREEDOM

Jesus “I’m truth. If you know the truth, the truth will set you free.”

Galatians “It is for freedom that Christ has set you free, so do not allow yourselves to be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”

Biblical rest

  • Freedom

Remember the 4 common burdens?

  1. Sin
  2. Problems
  3. Worry
  4. Death

Matthew 11:28-30

According to the context here, rest = freedom from these 4 burdens.

REST = Freedom from

  1. Sin = freedom is found only in Jesus Christ – he came into the world as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. We all need forgiveness of sin. This can be found only in the blood of Christ.
    • 1 John 2 “Christ is the propitiation (atoning sacrifice) for our sins.”
  2. Problems = freedom from difficulties, hardships, pains.
    • Jesus “In this world, you will have trials of many kinds, but take heart, for I have overcome the world.”
    • As long as we live in this world, we cannot escape problems, but we can overcome and conquer problems. How? In Christ.
    • “You are more than conquerors through Christ” (Romans?)
    • “Apart from me, you can do nothing.”
    • “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians?)
  3. Worries = freedom through Christ
    • “Cast all your anxiety on God because he cares for you.”
    • “I will guide you and strengthen you and uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Isaiah)
    • “Do not let your hearts be troubled.” (Jesus)
    • “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything through prayer and petition, present your requests to God, and the peace of God which transcends ALL understanding will keep your hearts and minds in Christ.”
  4. Death = freedom from Death
    1. Who can be free from THIS burden? Who can set us free? This is common sense, think about it. Only Jesus. He is the only one with power over life and death.
    2. “I am the Resurrection and the Life. He who believes in me will live though he die.”
    3. “I have come to give you eternal life… No one can snatch you out of my hand.”
    4. “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my voice and believes him who sent me will have eternal life. He shall not be condemned, but has crossed over from death to life.”

Biblical rest

  1. Salvation rest
  2. Submission rest
  3. Sharing rest of inheritance
  4. Peace rest
  5. Joy rest
  6. Inheritance rest
  7. Eternal glory rest

This is the real biblical meaning of rest.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I’ll give you rest.”

How to enjoy this kind of REAL rest?

“Come to me…”

This is very easy – this is part of reading comprehension.

“Come to me…”

We know now what is real biblical rest, and we know we need it. To receive it: “Come to Christ.”

Q: How can we come to Christ?

Walking over?

Conclusion: (3 points)

this is not literally, but biblically, practically.

  1. A = Accept Jesus as my personal Savior and Lord
  2. B = Believe that he died on the cross for my sin
  3. C = Confess with my mouth that he is Lord

“I can…”

1. Accept / Believe / Confess

Romans 10:9 “If you confess with your mouth Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. With your heart you believe and are justified; with your mouth you confess and are saved.”

“To all those who believed in his name, God gave the right to become children of God.”

“Salvation is the gift of God, not by works, so that no one can boast.”

Accept / Believe / Confess (publicly – this is not to be a hidden thing, but a public thing)

You must confess publicly before people.

2. Learn from Jesus

v. 29

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me… and you will find rest.”

Even Christians may think “believing in Jesus is enough.” Quick prayer, “Jesus, I love you, I confess, be my Savior. Finished!”

Yes, while making a confession in Christ is so simple, but truly living with faith in Christ is a WHOLE life practice of discipleship – fighting sin, old self, Satan.

Learn from me – Jesus encourages us.

We know to learn anything, we need time – we cannot learn quickly.

“Learn from me” = follow me / walk with me daily.

If we believe in Christ truly, we know that each day requires full effort.

3. This is the most important. If you catch it and put it into practice, you will be so blessed. Are you ready to be blessed?


  1. A-B-C
  2. Learn from Jesus
  3. Mission rest

3. Take the yoke of Christ and carry his burden.

v. 29

“Take my yoke upon you…”

Nobody likes a yoke

v. 30

“… my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

This is Mission rest.

It means “take Jesus’ burden as my burden.” Replace my burden with Jesus’ burden. Jesus’ job becomes my job. His task is mine, his burden is mine.

What is his burden? Salvation of the world.

This is a mystery – a secret.

  • If you carry your own burden, you will be exhausted, tired out.
    • But if you carry the burden of Christ, you will be energized.
  • To take the burden of Christ is the best way to be free from my own burden in this world.
    • The more we carry the burden of Christ, the more rest we will enjoy.

The principle is very simple:

“The more trust, the more rest.”

Jesus “If anyone would come to me, he must deny himself daily and take up his cross and follow me.”

v. 11

“11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.”

Let us stand up.

Let’s pray – you may pray following me.

If you want / need real rest, follow me in this prayer.

Let’s pray.

  • Jun 24 / 2018
  • Comments Off on The Power of the Resurrection of Christ (Romans 4:23-37)
Pastor Heo, Sermons

The Power of the Resurrection of Christ (Romans 4:23-37)

Download Notes in a .MD file

The power of the resurrection

Acts 4:23-37 (Pastor Heo)

4:23 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David: ” ‘Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? 26 The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the Lord and against his Anointed One. ‘ 27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.

32 All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had. 33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all. 34 There were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales 35 and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need. 36 Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means Son of Encouragement), 37 sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.


Peter and John were arrested and put in prison one night. The next day, the Sanhedrin (Supreme Court) questioned them – just because they healed a beggar in the name of Christ and preached the resurrection of Christ. The Sanhedrin wanted to punish Peter and John but could not because so many people were praising God – so instead, they commanded them not to preach of Christ (especially not his resurrection) any longer. Then, they released them with a strong warning.

Upon their release, Peter and John immediately returned to their group and reported to them the persecutions and sufferings they’d received from the Sanhedrin.

At the report of Peter and John,

  • the church did not complain against God –
  • they didn’t condemn nor judge the Sanhedrin,
  • nor fall down into deep depression and disappointment.

No, their first reaction to this difficult situation was … to pray to God. This is a very important principle that we should apply in our own lives.

How about your own reaction with your difficulties? Your first reaction should be prayer / talking with God. Prayer is our strength – this is our practical strength. This is our first strategy, our first weapon.

Let us see their prayer – and how they prayed.

How the disciples prayed

v. 23-31 (First reaction to the bad situation and prayer)

“4:23 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David: ” ‘Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? 26 The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the Lord and against his Anointed One. ‘ [Messiah] 27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.”

Looks like the Pentecost in chp 2 again. The earth was shaken and they were filled with the HS.

5 Points we can apply in our lives

#1 They addressed God as “Sovereign Lord”

Yes, we are talking to God personally and individually. Usually we start “Our Father in Heaven…”

This means they had strong conviction of the power and authority of God. (“You are Creator and Sustainer of all things – there is nothing impossible with you”).

You are omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent.

One day, someone threatened Martin Luther: “If you continue to go on in your course against us, you will be excommunicated, kicked out, deserted by all your supporters. Then, where will you be?”

Martin Luther: “Then, I’ll be in the hands of God.”

God is “Sovereign Lord”

Strong conviction of the power and authority of God

#2 Conviction of the uselessness of man’s rebellion against God

Acts 4:25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David: ” ‘Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? 26 The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the Lord and against his Anointed One. ‘

This is quoted from Psalm 2:1-2

“Psalm 2:1 Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? 2 The kings of the earth rise up and the rulers band together against the LORD and against his anointed,”

They applied the Psalm here in their situation. Their hearts and minds turned for comfort to the Scriptures. The parallel is perfect.

In these two verses, we see:

  • kings
  • rulers
  • Gentiles (unbelivers)
  • Israelites (believers)

This is the story of the crucifixion of Christ. “Anointed One” = Christ

The members of the Sanhedrin – arrested Peter and John – and had also arrested Christ. They decided to kill Christ, but had no right to carry it out according to Roman Law. So, they handed Jesus over to Pontius Pilate – ruler over Judea at that time. But, he also did not want to execute Jesus because he could find nothing guilty in Christ. He heard that Christ was from Galilee – so he sent him to Herod (ruler of Galilee at that time). He received Christ, but did not judge him – he only ridiculed and mocked him – then sent him back.

So, Pilate had no choice against the crowd, “Crucify him! We have no king but Caesar!” So, he handed Christ over to be crucified by the soldiers.

What does this mean?

  • kings
  • rulers
  • Gentiles
  • Israelites

Altogether banded together to crucify Christ. ALL humans defy God, but in the end “God must prevail.”

The prayer is based solidly on the Word of God

Psalm 2:1-2

Like this, the Word of God and our prayer must go together.

John 15:7 “If you remain in me, and my Word remains in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be given you.”

  • In his Word, God speaks to us and tells us what he wants us to do.
  • In our prayer, we speak to God and make ourselves available to accomplish his will.
    • The true prayer is NOT telling God what to do, but asking God to do his will through us.
    • It means getting God’s will done on earth through us, not getting our will done in heaven through God.

#3 The set the remembrance of Christ before them

And remembered his suffering and triumph – and they found strong conviction.

Jesus is your Lord? Then this is (more than) enough.

“Jesus is my Lord!~”

#4 For what did they pray?

For what shall we pray in a hard and difficult situation?

They prayed for courage.

v. 29

“29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness.”

They did not think they could face this situation in their own strength, but they prayed for God’s strength – to empower them and make the best use of their circumstances to accomplish their mission.

  • They did not pray for protection, but power.
  • Not fire from heaven, but power from heaven to preach and heal.

How about in our application? Do you pray?

  • If you pray, please do not pray for an EASY life, but pray for STRENGTH.
  • Do not pray for tasks equal to your power, but pray for power equal to your tasks.

#5 Through this prayer, we can see the result – again the gift of the HS.

v. 31

“31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.”

This is a similar event to Pentecost – they were filled with the HS again. They found the courage and strength they needed to witness about Christ.

Today we need to be filled with the HS again – yesterday is yesterday’s story. We need to be filled again and again and again until we see Christ face-to-face.

“Again!”

Christian community

v. 32-37

“32 All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had. 33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all. 34 There were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales 35 and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need. 36 Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means Son of Encouragement), 37 sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.”

Especially in the community of the church, prayer is supremely important. Yes, the witness of Christ is also supremely important, but the highest culmination is LOVE.

They had an intense love for each other – and a desire to share all they had with one another. Why? Because they are brothers and sisters in Christ – they are one family.

This kind of lifestyle is not the result of regulation, but it is spontaneous. The Law does not compel us to share, but the love in our hearts compels us to share – that is true Christian community.

Joseph (nicknamed “Barnabas”)

He is introduced here for several reasons:

  • he was a generous giver
  • he illustrated the things Luke was describing
  • had the most important ministry in the church (mentioned 25 times in Acts, and 5 times in the epistles)
  • he encouraged Paul in his early ministry and service to the Lord
  • he was Paul’s partner in his first missionary journey
  • he was HS filled – a good man because he was a big encouragement to the church

Also today, we need Barnabas. We need many Barnabusses? Barnabi?

v. 33 (KEY VERSE)

“33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all.”

Great power + great grace = Great Christian / church

If you were in this situation, could you do like this?

They “continued” to testify of the resurrection of Christ.

Situation:

The real reason the Sanhedrin arrested, jailed, and persecuted the early church was NOT because of the healing of the beggar, but because of the gospel message – the preaching of the resurrection of Christ.

If this news spread widely, it would mean that the Sanhedrin (elders, priests, etc) were TERRIBLY wrong. When Christ rose again from the dead, they met together and created a plan. They bribed the soldiers to spread a rumor that the disciples stole his body away. If the news of this spread, they would lose their position and status. So, they did their best to stop the spreading of the news of the resurrection of Christ.

They commanded Peter and John NOT to preach of the resurrection any longer.

But… they “continued”

How about our story? Is there a warning? Is their a threat from the Korean government? Is there persecution?

WITH THIS persecution, they “continued” preaching. But we have no such strong warning from the government. So, then, why don’t we preach the resurrection of Christ? We have freedom to do so. So, if we don’t, we commit a double fault.

What does the resurrection mean to you and me? What does this say to us practically, really?

Yes, about the resurrection, I can preach ALL day. But if I do so, you will be angry, hungry, etc.

So, let me share 2 points quickly.

What the resurrection of Christ says to us

#1 Jesus is God

Do you believe this?

Romans 1:4-6 “and who through the Spirit of holiness was appointed the Son of God in power by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord. 5 Through him we received grace and apostleship to call all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith for his name’s sake. 6 And you also are among those Gentiles who are *called* to belong to Jesus Christ.”

If you are not called, there is no relationship.

We can call Jesus “Lord” – more than 1,000 things “hope, love, peace, purpose, rock, shepherd, friend, brother, etc”

Jesus can be all positions we need – how is it possible? Because he is God – so all positions we need are possible.

He is God through his resurrection – this is the evidence.

#2 The guarantee of our resurrection

This is the “first fruits” of those who believe and belong to him.

Jesus “I am the Resurrection and the Life and whoever believes in me will not die.”

Romans 8:11 “And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.”

Yes, we experience death all the time, all around us. Somebody dies every day. Death is very near us. We experience death indirectly continually – and one day we will all experience death directly.

Jesus says, “I am the Resurrection and the Life, so he who believes in me will rise again even though he dies.”

Our physical death is literal, tangible, so our resurrection body will also be real, literal, tangible. That’s why Jesus says, “I am the Resurrection and the Life… do you believe this?”

Let’s pray.

  • Aug 20 / 2017
  • Comments Off on Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 7:14-25)
Pastor Heo, Romans: The Righteousness of God, Sermons

Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 7:14-25)

Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 7:14-25)

Download Notes in a .MD file

Thanks be to God…

Romans 7:14-25 (Pastor Heo)

14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. 21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.


Conclusion: (v. 25) “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!”

Today is the third time in chapter 7. The whole chapter = the Discussion of the Law.

  1. Our relationship with the Law (we died to the Law, alive in Christ)
  2. The Ministries of the Law (what the Law CAN do – there are 4)
    1. Reveals sin
    2. Arouses sinful nature
    3. Kills
    4. Displays the sinfulness of sin
  3. The Inability of the Law (what the Law CANNOT do – 3 points)

The Inability of the Law (3 Points)

#1 Law cannot change us

v. 14 “14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin.”

  • The Law is holy, came from a Holy God – he is righteous in all he says and does.
  • The Law is good, it reveals God’s holiness to us – and helps us to see our absolute need for a Savior.
  • The Law is spiritual – it deals with the inner man – as well as the outer actions.

Problem: “I am unspiritual (sinful by nature).”

  • The Law’s nature = spiritual
  • Our nature = unspiritual (even though we are saved, still we are unspiritual – we have a sinful nature )
  1. The Old Nature does not know the Law
  2. The New Nature does not need the Law

The Law cannot transform the Old Nature – it only shows how sinful that Old Nature is. If we try to live under the Law, we will only activate the Old Nature – not eliminate it.

How can we be free from sin and yet continue to do wrong?

“In Christ” – we are FREE from

  1. the penalty of sin (judgment),
  2. power of sin (powerlessness),

but NOT FREE from

  1. the presence and
  2. possibility of sin.

Under grace, the Law is changed from judgment to guidance – to a character study of the one who shaped us.

Only Jesus died for us on the cross, and only HE can change you and me.

#2. Law cannot enable us to do good

Do you want to do good or evil? Good.

The Law cannot help us to do good.

v. 15-21

“15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. 21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me.”

Are you confused? “I want to do what I don’t want to do, but I don’t do what I want to do, it’s what I don’t want to do that I do…….”

  1. Do you always do what you want to do?
  2. Do you always NOT do what you DON’T want to do?

Paul, personally, confessed, “I do not understand what I do. I do what I DON’T want to do. I DON’T do what I want to do.”

What does this mean? Is he declining into sinfulness? Getting worse and worse? NO. There are 3 points here.

#1: More blessing = more conscious of sin

More we become holy, the more we desire to become holy.

v. 5:20 “Where sin increased, grace increased all the more.”

This means, the more we experience the grace of God, the more we become conscious of sin and fighting sin. This is a basic doctrine of Christianity. The more grace/love of God, the more sensitive to sin we are, the more we desire to become holy – and hate/fight sin.

The more blessing we receive, the more blessing we are to give.

Practical example:

  • If you own $1000 / month, and give $100 in tithe, this is the correct, acceptable tithe.
  • If you earn $1,000,000 and give $1,000 as tithe, even though this is 10x the first amount, this is not the correct amount, it is not a full tithe.

Example 2:

  • How’s your suit/clothes? If you wear VERY expensive, wedding dress, etc, maybe you will be VERY careful about your actions and where you sit. You will be very careful to keep it clean. Even one small stain will be outstanding (noticeable).
  • But if you wear casual, cheap, loose clothes, you don’t care how to move, where to sit, etc. Even if something stains your clothes, it will not be noticeable and you will not be unhappy.

i.e. “The more holy you are, the more holy you want to be.”

In the Bible, there are certain books written by the apostle Paul.

  • 2 Cor = AD 56
    • (chp 11:5 “I am not less than any super apostle. I’m not in the least inferior to those.'”)
  • Eph = AD 60-61
    • (chp 3:8 “I am less than the least of all God’s people.'”)
  • 1 Tim = AD 62-63
    • (chp 1:15 “I am the worst of all sinners.”)

Look at this transformation.

Is Paul becoming worse and worse? No, the opposite is true.

The more we experience the grace/love of God, the more humble we must become.

In your case? Do you find the same things that you didn’t recognize as sin before you were saved – now you recognize it as sin since you are saved?

After saving, do you find the same things 1-2 years ago, you didn’t think “That’s a sin”, but now you recognize it as sin – then you are becoming more holy.

Paul “If I do not preach, I sin a terrible sin – curse on me.” Personally, he experienced the amazing grace of the gospel – and it changed his whole life completely. Now he cannot be happy without preaching the gospel.

If we experience this same power and grace in our lives, we also cannot be happy without doing this as well.

Samuel confessed (1 Sam 12:23) “As for me, far be it from me, that I should sin be failing to pray for you.” (Not praying for others was a terrible sin – because he experienced the special grace of God in his own life)

The more grace/love of God, the more we become sensitive to sin. May God bless us all with more grace.

#2: Christian life is a struggle

I’m a fighter. Christian life is a struggle in this world.

Q: “Are you dead IN sin, or dead TO sin?”

Be clear about your answer.

What is the difference? (a single two-letter word)

BIG difference:

  1. Dead IN sin (Eph 2:1 “…you were dead in your sins and transgressions…”) – we were children of the devil and slaves of sin – so at that time, we didn’t struggle, fight against sin – we just followed alone
  2. Dead TO sin = slaves of righteousness, children of God – no more condemnation or penalty or punishment of sin – alive to the consciousness of sin. This means we are fighting, struggling against sin.
  • Dead in sin = following sin
  • Dead to sin = fighting sin

Eph 5 “Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. For our fighting is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, authorities, powers of this dark world. Therefore, put on the full armor of God so that you can stand your ground when the day of evil comes.”

Paul confessed, near the end, “I have fought the good fight.” (2 Timothy verse 7)

1 Pet 5:8-9 “Be self-controlled and alert because your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Resist Satan, standing firm in the faith.”

Christ “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have struggles of many kinds, but take heart, for I have overcome the world.”

#3: We have responsibility

Both for our sins and our actions.

v. 17 “17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me.”

v. 20 “20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.”

What is the real meaning of these sentences?

Paul is not giving up / abdicating his responsibility. But, he confesses that his desires and sin fight against each other all the time.

For us as well, because in this world, our redemption is not 100% complete yet. We are still living in the presence and possibility of sin in this world.

  • Until under the grace of God, sin possessed me.
  • Now still, under the grace of God, I possess sin.
  1. Before the grace of God, we were responsible for being sinners.
  2. After we were redeemed, we are still responsible for our sin.

If you fight someone, can you say “I didn’t beat you. This fist beat you.” We must always remember we are responsible for our actions, for our sins.

We must never use the power of sin/Satan as an excuse – because these are defeated enemies. Yes, without Christ’s help, sin/Satan are more powerful than we are, so we would not be able to defend ourselves against Christ’s attacks. So, we should never stand up to sin all alone. Christ is the one who defeated sin ONCE and for all. After that, Jesus promised to fight by our side. So, if we look to Christ for help, we will not have to give in to sin.

But we must always remember that we are responsible for our own actions and sins because Satan is defeated.

  1. Law cannot change us
  2. Law cannot enable us to do good

#3. Law cannot set us FREE

Do you want freedom?

v. 22-25 “22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.”

It is very clear. The Law cannot give us true freedom. It is only Christ who can set us free. Only Christ can give us real freedom.

“You know the truth and this truth will set you free.”

Gal 5:1 “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.”

Even today, some Christians may say “Yes, salvation by grace of God through Christ, but our sanctification is by OUR actions – service, willpower, etc.” NO! Please remember that – not only our salvation, but also sanctification, growth, final glorification, from FIRST to LAST, all steps – all the course of the Christian life – is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. “Apart from me, you can do NOTHING.” This is applied in ALL areas of the Christian life.

At the same time, the Bible encourages us, “I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me.” (Phil 4:13?)

v. 24 “24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?”

Conclusion: v. 25 “25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!”

  • When you look to yourself, there is only powerlessness.
  • When you look to Christ, there is sure power, victory, possible through Christ.

Our proclamation: “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!”

Let’s pray.

  • Aug 13 / 2017
  • Comments Off on The Ministries of the Law (Romans 7:7-13)
Pastor Heo, Romans: The Righteousness of God, Sermons

The Ministries of the Law (Romans 7:7-13)

Download Notes in a .MD file

The Ministries of the Law

Romans 7:7-13 (Pastor Heo)

The Law and Sin

7 What shall we say, then? Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” 8 But sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, produced in me every kind of coveting. For apart from the law, sin was dead. 9 Once I was alive apart from the law; but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died. 10 I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life actually brought death. 11 For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, deceived me, and through the commandment put me to death. 12 So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good. 13 Did that which is good, then, become death to me? By no means! Nevertheless, in order that sin might be recognized as sin, it used what is good to bring about my death, so that through the commandment sin might become utterly sinful.


Sin is utterly sinful.

Last time in the first part of this chapter (v. 1-6) we saw our new relationship to the Law due to our union with Jesus in his death / resurrection. If we are united with him in these things, surely our relationship with the Law is that we are dead to the Law, and under Christ (under Grace).

Somebody might argue saying, “What good is the Law if we do not need it any longer?”

A: (v. 7-13) – this is the ministries of the Law (why we need the Law)

The ministries (businesses/jobs) of the Law = 4.

These ministries function even today.

#1. Law reveals sin

The Law defines sin as sin – it exposes it as what it is.

(v. 7) “7 What shall we say, then? Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.””

Romans 3:20 “Through the Law we become conscious of sin – the knowledge of sin.” Without Law, there is lawlessness. This reveals to us the inner man and shows us how dirty/sinful we are.

Paul doesn’t use “obvious sins” (killing, adultery, stealing) is sin. This is not difficult to understand. But rather, he uses “coveting” (I want what you’ve got). This is not an outward action, but an inward attitude – and almost every human has covetousness in their heart (this is the last of the 10 Commandments in Exodus).

Covetousness = leads to the breaking of the other 9 Commandments – it is an insidious sin that most people do not recognize in their own lives, but God reveals it.

Mark 10 – the Young Rich Ruler –

This is an example of revealing sin to show his need for a Savior.

“One day, a young man came to Jesus and knelt down and said, ‘Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?’

Jesus, ‘No one is good except God alone. You know the Commandments.’

Man, ‘I have done all this since I was a boy.’

Jesus loved him and said, ‘One thing you lack. Go and sell all you have and give it to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven. Come again, and follow me.’

At this, the young man’s face fell, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.”

No question, outwardly, this man was moral. It may be certain that he’d never broken the Commandments as he said. But when Jesus said, ‘Go and sell your possessions, and give to the poor.’ the Commandment to not covet revealed just how sinful he was. He did not realize that coveting was sin. But the Law revealed to him how covetous he was.

Jesus didn’t tell him the Law to save him, but to reveal to him his inward sinfulness.

This world says, Develop yourself, your greed, your wealth. But the Bible says, Covetousness is sin. Also “Put to death whatever is in your nature: greed, selfish desires, covetousness.”

Coveting, greed is idolatry.

  • “The love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs….
  • Be content with what you have…
  • Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven…
  • Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind in Christ Jesus, then you will be able to know and approve his good, pleasing, perfect will.”

Our standard (as a Christian) is NOT the world.

Our standard is what God says in his Word.

First ministry: it reveals sin.

#2. Law arouses Man’s sinful nature to sin

What does this mean?

Is the Law itself good or bad? (Good)

(v. 12) “12 So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good.”

Because the Law is from God, who is all of the above.

How does the Law provoke us to sin?

There is no problem in the Law itself. The problem is human nature. Sin has evil power.

Sin uses our sinful nature to rebel against the Law. (We know the story of the Fall of Man in Genesis 3 – the serpent used the Word of God to make Man fall – “Did God really say, ‘Don’t eat from these trees?’ No, no, no, eat, and you will become like God.” Eve thought it looked good – and from Adam all Men have received this same inclination – to do that which is prohibited.)

There’s a saying, “Stolen apples are sweeter.”

Forbidden things look more appealing.

  • Mom says, “Children, do not open this box. NEVER open this box! NEVER EVER EVER!”
  • So, what do children want to do? Open it quickly, just once, then close it forever.

Phil “The strength/power of the Law is sin.”

Genesis 1-3, at first, Adam lived in perfect surroundings – a commandment was given to him to NOT eat ONE fruit. It was given for his benefit. But the serpent turned this into his temptation. The mere fact that it was forbidden made it tempting.

Biblical scholar:

  • Serpent = a symbol of pleasure.
  • Eve = senses (emotion).
  • Adam = reason (logic).

Which is stronger? Sense or reason?

Follow your heart, or follow your mind?

Pleasure attacked through emotion – through the senses, then reason was led astray and sinned. Even a man with reasoning may say, “Look, other people are doing the same thing! If I do this small thing only once, it will make no difference.” In this way, emotion can lead Mankind away from his reasoning.

Strong passions, desires, feelings, reasoning, knowledge, understanding, etc – must all be put under control of the Holy Spirit.

#3. Law kills

If you are outside Christ, the Law kills you. Thus, we must be INSIDE Christ. “There is no more condemnation (of Law) for those who are in Christ.”

(v. 10-11) “10 I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life actually brought death. 11 For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, deceived me, and through the commandment put me to death.”

Gal 3:24 says the final ultimate job of the Law is: “The Law was put in charge to lead us to Christ…”

Let’s read and memorize this verse. It’s a key verse to understanding this.

Gal 3:24 “24 So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith.”

The Law is our tutor – in leading us to Christ.

Romans says, “Christ is the END of the Law.” This has many meanings, but one meaning is: The Law is the sign board pointing to Jesus (an arrow). If you go to Seoul, follow the sign boards. If you go in the opposite direction, you go to Busan. The Law is the final sign board pointing to Jesus Christ – to have life. Because only IN Jesus Christ, there is eternal, abundant, heavenly life.

John 5:24 “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my voice and believes in me shall not be condemned. The thief Satan comes to kill and destroy, but I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

“I am the WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE.” (I am the WAY to LIFE, and that is TRUTH.) This is the reason why the book of God is written. “These are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Son of God and have eternal life.”

John 5 “Whoever has the Son of God has life, whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.”

We are studying the Law, but is it not the same as the gospel?

There is a book called Gospel/Law.

  • OT = Book of Law.
  • NT = Book of Gospel.

Outwardly, this looks true, but inwardly, they are the SAME.

  • Gospel is “If you believe in and accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord, you will have eternal life.”
  • Law says, “If you reject Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord, you will die.”

This is the same. Like two sides of one coin.

  • Gospel: “Believe in Christ as your Savior, and live forever.”
  • Law: “Reject Christ as your Savior, and die forever.”

#4. Law shows sinfulness of sin

Do you hate sin? (or sinners?)

We heard many times, “God hates sin, but loves sinners.”

(v. 12-13) “12 So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good. 13 Did that which is good, then, become death to me? By no means! Nevertheless, in order that sin might be recognized as sin, it used what is good to bring about my death, so that through the commandment sin might become utterly sinful.”

Sin might become utterly (exceedingly) sinful.

The Law shows the sinfulness of sin.

Even unsaved, unbelievers know there is such a thing as sin – murder, stealing, lying, adultery, all sins. But, they do not realize the sinfulness (seriousness, true nature)of sin. Even today, some Christians may excuse their sin with words like “My mistake, human nature, instinct, bad habits…”

God condemns our sins. Yes, there is no penalty for condemnation for those who are IN Christ, but he still condemns our sins and tries to get us to see that they are utterly sinful. Until we realize how wicked sin really is, we will never want to oppose it and live in victory and holiness.

Ps. 19:12 “Who can discern his errors? Forgive my hidden faults.”

The root of ALL problems: SIN

Do you have any kind of problems? The ROOT: SIN.

Then we have hope, and we can rejoice that the answer is JESUS – the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.

Problems?

  1. ROOT: SIN
  2. SOLUTION: JESUS
  • 1 John 2:2 “Jesus is the atoning sacrifice for the sins of the world.”
  • 1 John 3:5 “Jesus appeared in this world that he might take away our sins – because in him there is no sin.”

In Him: no sin.

 

Let’s pray.

  • Jul 23 / 2017
  • Comments Off on We also died to the Law (Romans 7:1-6)
Pastor Heo, Romans: The Righteousness of God, Sermons

We also died to the Law (Romans 7:1-6)

Download Notes in a .MD file

We also died to the Law

Romans 7:1-6 (Pastor Heo)

Released From the Law, Bound to Christ

1 Do you not know, brothers and sisters—for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law has authority over someone only as long as that person lives? 2 For example, by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law that binds her to him. 3 So then, if she has sexual relations with another man while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress if she marries another man. 4 So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God. 5 For when we were in the realm of the flesh, the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in us, so that we bore fruit for death. 6 But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.


  • Chp 6 = Our new relationship to sin due to our union with Christ (“We died to sin”)
  • Chp 7 = Our new relationship to the Law due to our union with Christ (“We died to the Law”)

v. 4 “4 So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law…”

Topic: We also died to the Law

Just as we died to sin, so we died to the Law. If we died to sin, it is natural that we died to the Law, because Law and sin go together. The power of sin = the Law.

  • Without Law, sin is not sin.
  • Without sin, the Law is not needed.

Chp 6 = “You died to sin, alive to God”

  1. KNOW this is a historical fact,
  2. COUNT it to be true,
  3. OFFER your life to God

So, serve Christ in the New way according to the Holy Spirit.

We also died to the Law.

I want to share 3 things:

  1. What is the Law?
  2. How is it possible to die to the Law?
  3. What does it mean when we say, “We died to the Law”?

#1 What is the Law?

This word is repeated 23 times here (many times throughout the whole Bible). So, according to the given context, there are many meanings.

  • Romans 8:2 “Because through Jesus, the Law of the Spirit of Life set me free from the Law of sin and death.”
    • In this sentence, LAW means “governing power/principle” (like the Law of Gravity)
  • Ps 1:2 “Blessed is the man who delights in the Law of the Lord, blessed is the one who meditates on the Law of the Lord day and night.”
    • LAW = “Word of God” (synonyms) Do you believe they are the same?

So, be careful when you say “We died to the LAW” – this does not mean “We died to the Word of God”

This word “LAW” means written code/regulations that have authority over those outside Jesus Christ.

#2 How is is possible to die to the Law?

Interesting illustration to explain this:

Romans 7:2 “2 For example, by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law that binds her to him. 3 So then, if she has sexual relations with another man while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress if she marries another man.”

  • Chp 6 uses the illustration of Master and Slave to explain HOW we should Offer ourselves to God.
  • Chp 7 uses the illustration of Husband and Wife to show our NEW relationship to the Law due to our union with Christ.

This illustration is simple (not “sinful”) but has profound application.

When a man and woman are married, they are united for their whole lives – this is a physical union (Gen 2 “they will be one body”). So, as long as they live, they are under the authority of marriage. So, if someone marries another while still under that Law (authority), they sin. But, if the other dies, and the first marries again, there is no Law (authority) under which they are bound.

But we must understand the POINT.

  • Wife = us
  • Husband who died = the Law
  • New husband = Christ

POINT: If the wife died, the only one way she could marry again is if she rose again from the dead to life. THIS is the POINT.

  • Wife (us) DIED in Christ – so the Husband (Law) lost authority to rule over us
  • Christ died and we died in Christ
  • He rose and we were born again in Him
  • We remarried Christ (thus, he is called our “Bridegroom”)

#3 What does it mean when we say that?

6 points here:

1. It does NOT mean – the Law died

(Sin did not die) it is still very near to us and it has authority, dominion, power to condemn and punish those who are outside Christ. (We also were once under its authority and condemnation and penalty – but now, IN CHRIST, we are not under the Law but under Grace) – The Law LIVES.

(“I died to the Law”) – this is true – do you believe it?

2. This does NOT mean – I’m FREE to do whatever I want, nor to live a Lawless life.

Even amongst Christians, some say, “Dude, I’m saved – once for all” – but you do not have a license to live lawlessly. (Extreme of License)

3. We died to the Law, so we also died to “legalism”.

There’s another opposite extreme we must be cautious of (Extreme of Legalism)

We are no longer legalists.

  • This is the belief that we can become holy and pleasing to God by keeping the Law.
  • This problem = sees SINS (plural) but not SIN (singular) –
  • It judges outwardly, but does not consider the heart.
  • Legalism can make us unloving, unforgiving, judgmental toward other people.

So, we died to the Law = we are no longer legalists.

4. Our motivation is not from the Law – it comes from God’s grace through our union with Christ

v. 4 “4 So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God.”

We serve Christ, not by trying hard to keep the Law, but out of hearts and minds that overflow with love for Him. Total commitment to Christ cannot co-exist with total commitment to the Law – this would be spiritual idolatry. (We fully belong to Christ).

Still we must serve, we have a holy responsibility to live a holy life, but the motivation is not prompted by the LAW, but by our LOVE for him. (God looks at the heart)

5. It MEANS – we are to bear fruit

Fruit to God, for God, by God. Are you producing fruit? What is your fruit?

v. 4 “4 So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God. 5 For when we were in the realm of the flesh, the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in us, so that we bore fruit for death.

Here the word “fruit” is repeated twice.

NOW we bear fruit for God – THEN we bore fruit for death.

Yes, in physical marriage, we also have fruit (kids) – when we were in sin, we also produced fruit that made us ashamed – when we were under the Law, we produced fruit by our own effort and power that turned out to be fruitless – (the only fruit under the Law is sin and death – because sinful passions work against the Law).

Remember #1: The Law is still alive.

  • It had authority, but it did not effectively control human passions.
  • It restrains us and teaches us, but also stimulates our sinful nature.
  • It identifies sin, but also generates sin.

That’s why there’s fighting between the Old nature and the New nature.

Those who do not follow Christ, have only their own self-determination to follow. But, in Christ, “A new life begins.” That’s why we are born again. God is at the center of the Christian life. God provides, God supplies the power for Christian daily living. Our way of looking at this world changes totally through Christ.

John 15:16 “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear much fruit – fruit that will last forever.”

In Christ, we are to produce fruit that glorifies God.

  • Yes, in physical marriage, our fruit is physical children.
  • So, in our spiritual marriage with Christ, our spiritual fruit is Children of God.

6. It MEANS – we are released from the Law.

We are released (free). So what does this mean?

v. 6 “6 But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.”

This means, we are released from

  • the authority of the Law –
  • the penalty of the Law –
  • the external regulations of the Law in order to be “righteous” –
  • the ceremonial regulations that point at Christ (because Christ himself has fulfilled them).
  • We are released to serve in the new way of the Holy Spirit – who teaches us how to please God.
  • We are set free through the blood of Christ and counted righteous before God.

Let me close with this point.

(DEEP THINKING coming up)

“We died to the Law” means we are:

  • “not to break the Law, but to fulfill it” –
  • “not to cancel the Law, but to uphold it.”

What does this mean? How is it possible?

Matt 5:17-18 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets, rather I have come to fulfill them. Until heaven and earth disappear, not a single stroke of the pen will disappear from the Law until it is all fulfilled.”

Christ fulfilled these requirements perfectly through his life, work, death, resurrection.

Romans 10:4 “Jesus Christ is the END of the Law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.”

We are not to nullify the Law, but to fulfill it.

How is this possible?

Conclusion (secret / mystery (신비))

Only by remaining in Christ – belonging to Christ – are we accepted and counted as fulfilling ALL the demands of the Law.

Romans 8:1 “Therefore, there is no condemnation for those who are IN Christ – because in Christ, the Law of the Spirit set you free from the Law of sin and death.”

God condemned sin in sinful man by sending his Son in order that all the requirements of the Law be fulfilled through life in the Holy Spirit.

v. 6 “6 But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.”

God bless us, God bless you. YOU died to the Law.

Please apply this to your life.

Let’s pray.

  • Jul 09 / 2017
  • Comments Off on You died to sin, are alive to God (2) (Romans 6:1-10)
Pastor Heo, Romans: The Righteousness of God, Sermons

You died to sin, are alive to God (2) (Romans 6:1-10)

Download Notes in a .MD file

You died to sin, now alive to God (2)

Romans 6:1-10 (Pastor Heo)

Dead to Sin, Alive in Christ

1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. 5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— 7 because anyone who has died has been set free from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.


Another “how much more”: “Where sin increased (abounded), grace increased (abounded) much more”

  • There is no sin that cannot be forgiven,
  • no sinner that Jesus Christ cannot save.

If sin is powerful, grace is SOO much more powerful.

  • Q: IF this is true: “where sin increased, grace increased much more”, then (v. 1) “shall we sin more and more to receive more and more grace”?
  • A: NO! We are dead to sin, alive to God!

What does this mean? How is it possible?

Meaning: We are united in Jesus in his death, burial, resurrection. ID’d with Jesus in these things. Not only Jesus died for your sins, he died TO sin. Therefore, we are also DEAD TO SIN – because we are IN CHRIST. Whatever has happened to Christ, has happened to us. When he died to sin, so did we. When he rose to heaven, so did we.

What does this mean? Now, we must be able to see the reality of the invisible. Of course, everyone can believe in the visible. But, FAITH is the power to believe in the invisible.

2 Cor 4:18 “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen but on what is unseen, because what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

There are 2 worlds:

  1. Visible (Physical) World,
  2. Unseen (Spiritual) World.

Phys world:

  • Jesus came 2,000 years ago.
  • Abraham lived 4,000 years ago.
  • John the Baptist was months older than Jesus.

Spiritual world:

  • But, John B said, “Jesus is greater than me, for he was before me.”
  • And Jesus said, “Before Abraham was, I AM.”
  • Paul said, “In Him, ALL things hold together and have their being.”

You can say, “how old are you? When did you become a Christian?”

  1. You can answer in the Physical world “When I was 10.”
  2. But in the spiritual world, “where were you 2,000 years ago at Calvary?” I WAS THERE WITH CHRIST ON THE CROSS. Your parents, your children, your descendants, yet to be born, were there.

This is a mystery, but historical (spiritual) reality. Do you believe this?

We read 10 verses, and in each verse (almost), we can see the word “death” or “died.”

Dead to Sin, Alive in Christ

1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. 5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— 7 because anyone who has died has been set free from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.

  • “I died with Christ and no longer live. The life I live in the body I live to Christ….”

Our ID with Christ in his death, anything and everything that happened to Jesus in / after his death, the same will happen (has happened) to us.

  • His death is my death
  • His life is my life,
  • His glory is my glory

We are coheirs with Christ.

v. 3-4 “baptism” – Did you receive water baptism? This is a physical/outward appearance of a spiritual/inward reality. Water baptism itself does not save us, nor ID us with Christ in his death and resurrection. Rather it is an outward signal of our inward reality – that we have been crucified with Christ and raised to new life in him.

There are 2 meanings of “baptism” in Greek.

  1. “To sink deep underwater”
  2. “To be ID’d with”

Baptism is a public announcement that “I AM UNITED WITH CHRIST” – are you baptized? This is very very meaningful. This means that you publicly declare “I’m Christian! – united with Christ in his death, burial, resurrection.”

And because of this new relationship with Christ, we also have a new relationship with sin.

v. 1-2 “1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?”

Where sin increases, God’s grace increases much more.

Because of this, can you sin? Never. It’s impossible.

Ex: from the Bible.

1. Robber on the cross beside Christ

At that time, crucifixion was the worst penalty given to the worst criminals – we can assume he had lived a terrible, evil, wicked life.

  • Powerless, he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
  • This one short sentence says MANY things – “Jesus I’m a sinner. I need your help. You are my Savior. You are my Lord.”

Jesus answered only one sentence.

  • “Today (now), you will be with me in paradise.”
  • “All your sins are forgiven.”

What grace! He experienced that God’s grace is Soooo much greater than all his sin.

Where sin increased, grace increased much more.

But imagine, if he had lived longer on this earth AFTER that, would it be possible for him to GO BACK to his life of sin in order to receive this grace from Jesus on the cross again? NO!

2. Prodigal son

(bad, evil, wicked son) – left his father for his own life/freedom. He spent, lost all he had. He wanted freedom, but became a literal slave and beggar.

  • When he came to his senses, he returned to his father. “I’m no longer worthy to be your son. Make my like one of your servants.”
  • His father never mentioned his sin, nor past life, just filled with compassion, threw himself around him, kissed him, and said, “Quick! Bring the BEST robe and put it on him and a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet! Kill the fattened calf and let’s celebrate with a feast!”

Immediately, fully, his sonship was restored. This son experienced GREAT grace – where sin increased, God’s grace increased more.

But is it possible to leave his father AGAIN and go back to his old lifestyle in order to return and experience this grace again? NO!

He died to his old self! He cannot go backward to restoring faith/grace, but must go forward to developing faith/grace.

3. Apostle Paul

He was the biggest persecutor of Christians, and one day on the road to Damascus, Christ appeared to him and changed his life completely.

  • “Saul, why do you persecute me?”
  • “Lord, who are you?”
  • “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.”

He experienced this great sin and greater grace.

But is it possible for him now to go back to his old life – hating and persecuting Christians again – in order to come back and experience this great grace from God on the road to Damascus again? NO!

So he writes, “I press on to the goal for which Christ has called me. I am what I am.” He cannot go backward for restoring grace, but must go forward for developing grace.

4. Lazarus

This story is a picture of our own salvation procedure – John 11-12 –

  • Lazarus has been in the tomb for 4 days (and there’s a terrible smell). There’s no question about his death.
    • Like this, we also were once totally DEAD in our sins.
  • Yet, one day, Jesus came to the tomb – Lazarus did not come to Jesus, but Jesus came to the tomb.
    • Like this, we did not come to Jesus, but Jesus came to us – for we were dead spiritually.
  • Jesus said, “Lazarus, COME OUT!” He heard the voice of Christ and CAME OUT!

Immediately, unconditionally, this grace saved Lazarus.

But is it possible for Lazarus to kill himself again and go back into the tomb in order to experience this wonderful power of God again? NO! Of course not!

Instead, Lazarus was seated at the table with Jesus.

The process:

  1. Death
  2. Raised from the dead
  3. Set free to work in the newness of life
  4. Seated in heaven with Jesus

Ephesians 2:3, 6 “You were dead in your sins…. God raised you up and seated you in the heavenly realms with Christ.”

So, we do not want to go back into our sin any more than Lazarus wanted to go back into the tomb dressed in grave rags.

“If anyone is in Christ, the old has gone, the new has come.” Sin and death have no more dominion over Jesus Christ. Because we are in Christ, sin and death also no longer have dominion over us.

Please remember, if we are in Christ,

  • We cannot go backward
  • We must only go forward

We died to sin. How can we live in it any longer?

Let’s pray.

  • Jul 02 / 2017
  • Comments Off on You died to sin, are alive to God (Romans 6:1-10)
Pastor Heo, Romans: The Righteousness of God, Sermons

You died to sin, are alive to God (Romans 6:1-10)

Download Notes in a .MD file

You died to sin, are alive to God

Romans 6:1-10 (Pastor Heo)

Dead to Sin, Alive in Christ

1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. 5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— 7 because anyone who has died has been set free from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.


Conclusion: we died to sin, we are alive to God.

In chp 5, we saw 4 “how much more“s

(Actually, there are FIVE)

  1. If God so loved us that he gave his one and only Son to die on the cross for us when we were ENEMIES, “how much more” does he love us NOW that we are his children?
  2. If our Lord Jesus Christ did something great for us through his death, “how much more” is he NOW doing for us that he is alive?
  3. If one man (Adam) brought physical / spiritual death to all human beings, “how much more” is Jesus ENOUGH to bring LIFE to all human beings? Adam being a living being, Jesus became a life-giving being.
  4. If just one action of disobedience of one person is enough to condemn and judge ALL mankind, “how much more” is just one action of obedience of one person (Jesus) enough to bring righteousness, redemption, glorification, justification, kingdom, heaven, to all men?
  5. LAST: (chp 5:20) “20 The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased (all the more) [how much more],”

KJV “Where sin abounded, grace abounded [so] much more.”

So…. how much do you sin in your daily life?

No matter how much it is, God’s grace is greater. This is common sense. God did not create sin. The root of sin is Satan. The root of grace is God.

  • If something from Satan is powerful,
  • “how much more” powerful is something from God?

There is no sin that is unforgivable. There is no sinner that Jesus Christ cannot save.

1 Tim 1:15 “Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance, that Jesus Christ came into this world to save sinners, of whom I’m the worst.” Jesus can save even the WORST sinner.

By nature, I’m a terrible sinner, but honestly speaking, I don’t think I’m THE WORST sinner in this world.

Another meaning: “Where sin increased, grace increased all the more.”

  • The more grace we experience, the more we will recognize how sinful we are before God.
  • The more holiness of God, power of God in my life, the more I see my own unholiness, powerlessness, weakness, smallness.

We are under grace.

“Where sin increased, God’s grace increased all the more.” – this is true – a basic truth – don’t doubt – believe it as truth – do you believe this?

But, we should not misunderstand. We must understand the true meaning of this sentence.

Somebody can say, “WOW! Sin increases, and so grace increases? Dude! Let’s sin continually! Sin is awesome! Because it gives me more of God’s grace!” The Bible says, “If you say this… you are not really a born again Christian, or you do not understand the fundamental basics about Christianity you should know.”

  • 6:1-2 “1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? “
  1. If you died to smoking, you cannot smell it any longer.
  2. If you died to alcohol, you cannot taste it any longer.

We read only 10 verses, but a very STRONG verb is repeated multiple times: “KNOW”

  • v. 3, 6, 9 – this expresses that this is a basic, fundamental, Christian doctrine.

Imagine, if Satan can keep us away from this knowledge, Satan can keep us impotent (powerless).

This verse is a believer’s identification with Jesus Christ.

Last week we saw our identification with Adam and Jesus:

  1. By our first, physical birth, we are IDed with Adam
  2. By our second, spiritual birth, we are IDed with Jesus

“To all who believed in him, he gave the right to become children of God. Children not born of natural descent, or a husband’s will, but born of God.”

This is just ONE message, our ID with Jesus in his death, burial, and resurrection. Our union with Christ in his death, burial, and resurrection.

  • When we are IDed with Adam, it is in his sin, condemnation, judgment, penalty, eternal death.
  • When we are IDed (united) with Christ, it is in his death, burial, resurrection, eternal life.

Let us continue this study next time.

Let’s pray.

  • Jun 25 / 2017
  • Comments Off on Adam vs. Christ (2) – Romans 5:9-21
Pastor Heo, Romans: The Righteousness of God, Sermons

Adam vs. Christ (2) – Romans 5:9-21

Download Notes in a .MD file

Adam vs. Christ (2)

Romans 5:9-21 (Pastor Heo)

9 Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! 10 For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! 11 Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

Death Through Adam, Life Through Christ

12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned— 13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come. 15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ! 18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous. 20 The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, 21 so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Conclusion: eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Last Sunday: x4 = “how much more” (v. 9, 10, 15, 17) – last Sunday, we saw only 2 of them

  1. Human logic = no one dies for a bad man, but IF God loved us so much that he gave his only Son to die on the cross for us while we were enemies, How much MORE is he loving us now that we are his loving children?
  2. Human logic = we can do nothing for others through our death (end of everything) – this is the state of powerlessness – IF Jesus did something greater (greatest) through his death than ALL things humans can do together through their lives, How much MORE is he NOW doing for us that he is ALIVE?
  • v. 9 “God demo’ed his love for us in this – while still sinners, he died for us'”
  • v. 10 “If, while God’s enemies, we were reconciled to God, how much more shall we be saved through his life?'”

The next 2 – we need to focus on ONE keyword.

“ONE”

One = enough

  • The more the better (materials), right?
  • But, in terms of what is REALLY important, ONE is more than enough.

Hana-nim = ONE nim

  • One God, one Savior, one husband, one wife,

v. 12-19 “ONE” = x12

There are TWO “ONE man” (Adam vs. Christ)

  • Adam = man (literal meaning = “from the dust”)
  • Christ = God incarnated (God became man) “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us”
  • Adam = no physical father, the first man made by God directly
  • Christ = no physical father
  • Adam – the first physical father, affects ALL human beings by what he has done (sin)
  • Christ – also affects ALL human beings by what he has been doing (salvation)
  • Adam = ONE in negative sense
  • Christ = ONE in positive sense
  • Adam = given dominion over all Creation, through disobedience (sin), he lost his kingdom
  • Christ = came as king over NEW Creation “the old has gone, the new has come” – through his obedience, he brought in righteousness and justification

Christ has done SO MUCH MORE than Adam

Some unbelievers challenge with this question: “Was it fair for God to judge the WHOLE world by ONE man’s disobedience?”

Answer: “Of course, not only fair, also wise, and gracious.” If God has tested EACH individually, the result would have been the same anyway (guilty) – by condemning ALL human beings through ONE man, God was also then able to SAVE all human beings through ONE man (Jesus Christ)

We are ALL racially connected (genetically, physically) through Adam. Fallen angels cannot be saved – they sinned individually, and were judged, condemned individually. There is no substitute to take their condemnation. But because we were lost in Adam, we can also be saved through Jesus Christ. For human redemption and salvation – God’s plan is wise, gracious, merciful, fair.

  • Adam (first man) is the representative of ALL humans.
  • Jesus is not only our representative, but also our substitute.

v. 12-14 (Fundamental theology)

Death Through Adam, Life Through Christ

12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man (Adam), and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned (in Adam)— 13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, *who is a pattern of the one to come*.

  • The one to come = Jesus Christ

Human logic = every general effect has its own general cause (Cause – Effect).

  • The wages of sin = death.
    • Sin = cause (root, work), = breaking the Law
    • death = effect (fruit, salary)

Without Law, sin is not sin. Of course, there is sin around us, but without Law, sin is not taken into account as sin (loophole).

Those who lived between Adam and Moses, people did not receive the Law to keep or break – so legally, logically, these few generations (Adam to Moses) did not “sin” because they had no Law. So, they should not have “died” right? But they did die – because of Adam’s sin – not their own sin.

Still today, men die – but not for their own sin (otherwise, babies would not die – they have not yet sinned). So, like this ALL men will/must die because of Adam’s “Original Sin”

Nobody can escape the Original Sin because we all have a birthday, place, nationality, and inheritance of Sin (death). We did not choose these ourselves (nor our skin color, physical parents, etc) – all are given to us regardless of our choice. Like this, all human beings are under the influence of the first physical father, Adam. That’s why all human beings need Jesus Christ – because only he defeated the power of death and one day he will raise the bodies of those who died in him.

If Adam is enough to bring death to all humans,…
#3 How much more is Jesus able to bring LIFE to all humans?

(heavenly, spiritual, meaningful, purposeful, ALL life – even unbelievers enjoy physical life through Jesus Christ (general grace – as opportunity to receive Christ as personal Savior and Lord and live eternally)) – only Christ is the Author of Life

  • “I am the Resurrection and the Life – he who believes in me will live even though he dies…”
  • “I have come in this world to give you life – that you would have it to the full – no one can snatch you out of my hand”
  • 1 John 5:11-12 “He who has the Son has life, but he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.”

This is another “how much more”.

  • Adam = death
  • HOW MUCH MORE Christ = life

1 Cor 15:22 “In Adam, all died. So, in Christ, all will be made alive.”


v. 15-19

15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the ONE man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the ONE man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of ONE man’s sin: The judgment followed ONE sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the ONE man, death reigned through that ONE man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the ONE man, Jesus Christ! 18 Consequently, just as ONE  trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also ONE righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the ONE man *the many* were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the ONE man the many will be made righteous.

“the many” = all human beings (using a definite article)

  • ONE act of disobedience (Adam) brought death to ALL
  • ONE act of obedience (Christ) brought life to ALL

In human history – since the Creation, who committed sin first? Eve

Practically, really, in human history, Adam was not the first person who committed sin, Eve was FIRST (congratulations). And she made her husband eat the fruit with her. Also, Adam’s son Cain committed the first murder (his own blood brother Able). In the Bible, nowhere is it said that Eve’s sin brought death to all men. Nor, Cain’s sin brought death to all. Why is Adam the guy?

Because he was responsible – the first responsibility before God. Adam was enough – only one person – to bring sin, condemnation, penalty, and hell to ALL men, how many times did he need to commit sin to bring this? ONE time. ONE bite. – that was enough.

The point: If this is true, just ONE action of ONE man was enough to bring death to ALL men,
#4 How much more does ONE action of ONE man (Jesus on the cross) bring righteousness, victory, justification, eternal life, kingdom of heaven to ALL?

  • “I am The Way, The Truth, The Life – no one comes to the Father except through me.”
  • 1 Cor 15:22 “As in Adam all died, so in Christ, all will be made alive.”
  1. The first Adam = death
  2. The LAST Adam (Christ) = life
  3. The first Adam was tested in a beautiful garden surrounded by love and beauty.
  4. The last Adam was tempted in the wilderness, desert, died on the cruel cross.
  5. First Adam lost his paradise – driven out.
  6. Last Adam turned to the neighbor on the cross and gave his paradise to the thief.
  • OT = the book of the genealogy of Adam (Genesis 5) – it ends with a CURSE
  • NT = the book of the genealogy of Christ (Matthew 1) – ends with “NO MORE CURSE” (New Heaven and New Earth)

Remember, we cannot help being in Adam – this came with our first birth over which we had no control, but we CAN experience a SECOND BIRTH in Christ – which will put us in him and remove the curse from us and give us life.

Scripture gives us no option.

Jesus says, “Do not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.'”

You must be REALLY born again – not just a nominal Christian. Is Christ really IN YOU?

Let’s pray.

  • Apr 16 / 2017
  • Comments Off on Jesus Christ is Risen! How about to you? (Easter 2017)
Easter, Sermons

Jesus Christ is Risen! How about to you? (Easter 2017)

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Jesus Christ is Risen!

1 Cor 15:1-8 (Pastor Heo)

The Resurrection of Christ

1 Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. 3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance : that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, 8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.


Is Jesus Christ risen to you?

Jesus died for our sins and rose for our salvation and lives now and forever in his risen and same body and will come again in his same body.

Behold, he is coming again soon and every eye will see him, even those that pierced him.

What a Savior, Lord, King, God!

  • v.1 = I want to remind you of the gospel.
  • v. 2 = By this gospel we are saved.
  • v. 3-4 = The message of the gospel is that Christ died, he was buried, raised on the third day (according to the Scriptures).

According to the Scriptures = “according to the WHOLE Bible” = this is the key message of the WHOLE Bible – that Jesus died for our sins and rose again for our salvation

Summary of the WHOLE Bible

  1. OT: Prophecy of the Death and Resurrection of Jesus
  2. M, M, L, J (gospels): The Literal fulfillment of these prophesies (thus, gospel books)
  3. Acts: Historical fruit of the death and resurrection of Jesus (the church)
    1. From Jesus’ Ascension to his Second Coming is the Mission of the Church
  4. Epistles: The meanings / responsibilities of the blessings of the church
  5. Revelation: The same Jesus will come in the same body and destroy all who are against him and establish his perfect kingdom

Crucifixion and resurrection go together all the time, inseparably.

  1. Without the cross, no resurrection.
  2. Without death, no life.
  3. Without resurrection, his death is a failure.
  • Romans 4:25 “He was delivered over to death for our sins and raised for our justification.”
  • “God demonstrated his own love for us in this. That while we were still sinners, he died for us.”
  • Hebrews “Therefore, Jesus is able to save completely those who come to God through him.”
  • Bible says, “I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his sufferings, and become like him…”
  • v. 5-8 = Many appearances of Jesus as Lord (the argument for his resurrection from the testimony of many witnesses)

Three things are necessary to make a testimony trustworthy.

  1. Witnesses = able, competent, first-hand
  2. Witnesses = sufficient in number
  3. Witnesses = good reputation

The apostles are all of these, they did not just base their teaching on the witness of others.

  • There are more than 500 confirmed witnesses of Jesus as Lord.
  • The OT requires only 2-3 witnesses to establish a case.

And their character? No scholar has ever attacked them on ethical grounds. They could not have had an ulterior motive for claiming this stupendous effect.

The 12 followed Jesus for more than 3 years and learned from Jesus as his disciples. But when he was killed, they all ran away. But they were totally reversed in their attitudes and characters after they saw him alive again. They became un-silence-able witnesses after this.

In the following order, events of Jesus’ resurrection occurred:

Events after the Resurrection

  1. Early in the morning, 3 women came to the tomb and saw the angels
  2. They separated there – Mary Magdalene went to tell Peter and John, the other two went to tell the others (in Bethlehem)
  3. Peter and John ran to the tomb, but returned to their place without seeing the Lord

After this, 12 appearances of Jesus:

  1. Mary – at the tomb after Peter and John had left
  2. The other women on the street
  3. 2 disciples on the way to Emmaus
  4. Peter – personally
  5. 10 disciples without Judas and Thomas
  6. 11 disciples (including Thomas)
  7. Apostles at the Sea of Tiberius
  8. Apostles on the Mt. of Galilee
  9. More than 500 brothers at the same time
  10. James – his half brother
  11. Disciples on the Mt. of Ascension
  12. Paul – on the way to Damascus
  13. And even still today, Jesus is continuing to appear to believers on and on – because he promised “Surely, I am with you always to the very end of the Age.”

Do you recognize this? How?

Through the gospel preached to you by somebody.

  • v.1, 2 = “I preached to you”
  • v.3 = “preached to me, pass on to you”
  1. Gospel is “news”
  2. News is “news” when it is made known

Gospel is like a river, it must run and run to remain a river. If it stops running, no more river.

Can you check yourself, if this gospel was preached / passed on to you?

If preached to you and passed to you, this gospel will continue to be preached by you and will continue to be passed by you.

“…as of FIRST IMPORTANCE…” (v. 3)

This will continue until He comes again. Nobody can stop it. God bless you to be involved in this wonderful gospel news for all the people – all the time, forever.

Let us pray.

  • Apr 05 / 2015
  • Comments Off on The Credibility and Power of Christ’s Resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:12-23, 58)
Easter, Pastor Heo, Sermons

The Credibility and Power of Christ’s Resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:12-23, 58)

04.05-easter
04.05.2015-PHeo-Easter

Sermon Notes

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The Resurrection of the Dead

12 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 

19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men. 20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. 23 But each in his own turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him. 

58 Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.


 

Jesus is alive! again!

So, Jesus’ resurrection holds a unique place in Christianity. Christianity is the ONLY religion on earth that bases its foundation of faith on the resurrection of its founder.

Jesus’ resurrection is fundamental to our faith and to our salvation – provided for by his death.

In 1 Cor 15, this is the Resurrection chapter.

Paul wrote 13 books, 87 chapters – but THIS chapter is the longest chapter. EVERY line, every verse, every sentence is concentrated on the resurrection of Christ.

Everything in our faith stands or falls on the resurrection of Jesus.

Are you Christian? Who is a Christian? One who is united with Jesus in his death and resurrection. Believe his death is “my death” and his resurrection is “my resurrection.”

We can see one very short word repeated many times in almost every verse today: IF (repeated 7 times today). Through these IFs we can see 5-6 negative facts:

  1. (v. 14) IF Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless. (Our gospel is robbed of its joy – the joy would become a funeral dirge?) – What’s the point without the resurrection? There’s nothing to preach.
  2. (v. 14) IF there is no resurrection, our faith is in vain and worthless. All we have we received as a free gift of God – divine childship, justification, sanctification, glorification, salvation, a home in heaven – it’s all worthless.
  3. (v. 15) IF no resurrection, then all witnesses are false – liars and deceivers (essential for apostleship = a witness of the resurrection) – the KEY message of all missionaries, evangelists, preachers, etc is Jesus substituationary death and resurrection
  4. (v. 17) IF no resurrection, your faith is futile, you are still in your sins.
    Acts 4:12 “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.” Only Jesus is our Savior from sin and death – the wages of sin = death. Only Jesus paid completely and totally the punishment, power, presence, of sin. Only Jesus defeated the LAST enemy, death.
    But IF he didn’t rise from the dead, then he has no more saving power than any other man throughout history.
  5. (v.18-19) IF no resurrection, all who died in Christ are LOST = in hell, and WE are the most miserable – above ALL people in the world – we ought to be the most pitied. 
    Up to today, throughout the world, many Christians have been martyred with only ONE hope – the hope of the resurrection. So, how miserable they are if there is NO hope – if there is NO resurrection.

Isn’t that true?

It is better to be sorrowful for NO hope than sorrowful for FALSE hope.

So, today, I want to share the CREDIBILITY of the resurrection of Christ.

Yes, this is a miracle. The kind of evidence needed to prove this fact is the same evidence that we need to prove any other miracle. i.e. reference to the laws of nature cannot apply when the laws of nature are bent (miracles work outside natural laws). So, competent witnesses and other proofs are the most appropriate methods to show the credibility of this fact.

  1. Cause and Effect = the first
  2. Argument from witnesses = the second

Every effect around us has a cause. Without an effect, no cause.

So, if Jesus’ resurrection = a cause, then what are the effects? There are MANY throughout history, but I will share only 4.

1. The empty tomb

The fact that the tomb was empty was testified to by many competent witnesses – both friends and enemies, angels, Roman soldiers, women, disciples.

How can we explain this? The angel came down from heaven and rolled away the stone and sat on it, said to the women, “Don’t fear, I know you are looking for Jesus who was crucified, but he is not here. He has risen, just as he said. Come and see the very place where Jesus lay.”

2. The Lord’s Day

(Sabbath = Saturday, right?) then why do we worship on Sunday? For us, every day is “technically” the Lord’s day because he created them all, but the first day of the week is the “Lord’s Day” because Jesus rose from the dead on the first day of the week.

At that time, to keep the Sabbath (Saturday) service had been VERY important. So, who would ever dare to change it? On what grounds could it be changed?

The origin of the Sunday worship service can only be explained by the resurrection.

3. This building

The temple of Jesus Christ – the Christian church – all over the world

There are so many churches all over the world, the Church is a grand institution all over the world. What would the world be without church? Helping ministry, mercy ministry, worship, songs, preaching, etc. Where did this church come from? This is an effect, what is the cause?

The reason Jesus appeared and visited the discouraged and revived the faith of the disciples to send them forth on mission to announce BOLDLY and LOUDLY (the character change of the disciples is also another effect of the cause of the resurrection) the life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Christ – to continue his work and expand his kingdom on earth.

This is HOW the church began. This is why the church is called the “body of Christ” and Jesus is the “head of the Church.”

4. The New Testament

This is the Word of God written in human language for us to understand clearly. For our understanding, the Bible is written in human language. This is based on the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Had Christ remained dead, his story ALSO would have remained buried with him. What would be the point to tell such a story of a dead zealot/rebel?

As you know, in the New Testament, his resurrection is spoken of more than 100 times. There are fruits, interpretations, meanings, of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is the “Book of the Resurrection” – the WHOLE New Testament.

—-

Next, there are the testimonies of the witnesses:

We need three things:

  1. Capable, eye-witnesses
  2. Enough in number (more than 2)
  3. Have a good reputation

All the disciples qualify in these respects. They all said, “We are EYE WITNESSES” – there were at least 12 appearances of Jesus to the disciples. There were MORE THAN 500 eye witnesses to his resurrection.

If only I said, “Wow, I saw a tiger running on the street yesterday.” (But do you trust my reputation?) What if Pastor Brian said that? The same thing. Would it still be difficult to believe? If FIVE people said the same thing, would you believe? What about 10, 50, 100, ALL members of AICF? Would you believe then? Jesus appeared to MORE THAN 500 eye witnesses who testified to his resurrection.

What about their character, human reputation? Yes, we know before the resurrection, many of the disciples were timid, cowardly – Peter denied Christ 3 times at the cross and all the others RAN AWAY returning to their old lifestyles. They lost their faith and hope totally.

Yet, after they met the risen Christ again, these believing disciples became STRONG and TIRELESS believers and they ANNOUNCED his resurrection LOUDLY putting their own lives at risk and DIED as martyrs.

Yes, today, this message remains the same.

The resurrection is our HOPE, our JOY, our HOPE of HOPES.

(v. 58) “STAND FIRM” – why? Because Christ has risen. “Let nothing move you” – why? Because Christ has risen. “Give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord” – why? Because Christ has risen. “And we know that our service for the Lord is not in vain” – why? Because Christ’s resurrection is HOPE for us.

Jesus’ resurrection is the firstfruits (guarantee) for us who believe in him. Only Christ can say, “I am the Resurrection and the Life and whoever believes in me will not die.” Do you believe this? If we believe, then we also believe that Jesus is still guiding us now. If we believe, it means that we are to give our lives to his service – we will also be resurrected into eternal life later.

  • Romans 8 “If the Holy Spirit who raised Christ from the dead is living in you and me, then he will also give you life.”
  • Phil “We want to know the power of Christ’s resurrection and sharing in his suffering.”

Why? Without death, no resurrection.

May God bless us with his resurrection joy, power, and HOPE.

Let’s pray.

  • John 11:26 “I am the Resurrection and the Life, he who believes in me will never die…”

We must share in his death and cross. Without these, there is no resurrection nor crown.

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So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Listen