FOLLOWING CHRIST AND ETERNAL SECURITY, 631
If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him. (JOH 10:37-38).
Notice the emphasis that Jesus places on what we see in His works. The Lord Jesus said, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not." You and I are predestined to be conformed to the blessed image of Christ. We need to understand that our works must conform with our profession, because if they do not, people may not believe our profession.
We see here that the Lord Jesus Christ has been attacked as to His profession. Jesus said that He was the Son of God, and the Jews in Verse 33 answered Him saying, "For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God." They wanted to stone Him for His profession. Jesus replied, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him."
Only our Saviour was able to give legal obedience, meaning perfect conformity to the law, and it is only in the blessed atonement of Christ that you and I can obtain perfect obedience. We need gospel obedience to conform to the image of Christ.
Now let me distinguish gospel obedience from legal obedience. Gospel obedience is a hearts desire to do the will of God and humble repentance and remorse for every infraction of that will. When we see somebody who falls in sin, and they are arrogant and defend their sin, they are not walking in gospel obedience. We can all fall, but we may not live in sin. If we do not do the works of the Father or show humble repentance when we sin, then dont believe our profession. If we do not show remorse and if our hearts desire is not to do the will of God, Jesus says, "believe me not." Dont believe the profession.
Satan's perverted definition of eternal security is probably used to deceive more professing Christians than any other doctrine. Satan will teach you in his gospel that all you have to do is accept Jesus and you are eternally secure, even if you continue to live in sin. That is a damning doctrine. To teach that when we are once saved, we are always saved, and we are saved by the mere act of accepting Jesus, while continuing to live in sin, and we are still eternally secure is a damning doctrine.
Satans gospel teaches that you may fall out of fellowship with God by living in sin, but you will never lose your salvation if you have once accepted Jesus as your personal Saviour, as though there is merit in your accepting Jesus. It is as though that Gods hands are bound, and you have a right to live with utter disregard to His will. Our Saviour, being the Son of God, says that if He does not do the works of His Father, we are not to believe Him. Do you see how horribly dangerous the teaching of eternal security is on the foundation of the fact that we accepted Jesus? It is horribly dangerous.
However, our Saviour's teaching clearly begins and ends at a completely different point. Satans gospel begins with what I have done. The gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ connects our actions and attitude to our evidence of eternal security. Our actions and attitude do not purchase or merit eternal security, but they become our evidence of our security. There is quite a difference between those two teachings.
All salvation begins with the grace of God. It all begins when the Holy Spirit comes into the heart and renews the spirit of our heart, the spirit of our mind. He works the work of regeneration and He brings a new man. We put off the old things of the flesh. We strive against the powers of sin. We see the sinfulness of sin and how grievous sin is in the sight of God, and we have remorse over sin. The Lord Jesus begins with the word repent. Our Saviour clearly connects our actions and our attitude as our evidence that we have eternal security as He says in our text, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him." (JOH 10:37-38).
In other words, we can see by the walk and the attitude of a person whether or not they have the work of regeneration. It isnt so much what they say with their mouths, it is what we hear with the click of their heels, by their walk of life; that is where we see the evidence. Their attitude toward the holy will of God and their attitude toward their fellow man reveal the work of regeneration. Amen.
In JOH 10:27 Jesus uses two very positive descriptions that identify His sheep! "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me."
First, "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them" When our hearts respond to the Word of God, and our consciences respond with humble reverence for the will of God, we hear His voice. Secondly, "and they follow me." They hear the Saviours voice and they follow Him.
It is only those who hear our Saviour's voice, and follow Him, who have eternal security. He said, "My sheep hear my voice, I know them, and they follow me." Now look at the next verse and notice the connecting word, and. "And I give unto them [unto whom? Those who hear my voice and follow me.] eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." If the Lord gives you eternal life, there is no such thing as falling away, because underneath are His everlasting arms. We may fall, but we will never fall away. The difference is that the work of grace has given us that new attitude, that new desire.
Who is He talking about? Go to the previous verse. He is talking about His sheep who hear His voice and follow Him. They are the ones who have eternal life. "And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand."
I want you to see how diametrically opposed that is to the gospel of Satan, who teaches, "Well, you are eternally secure, you can live in sin." No. That is not what Jesus teaches. Jesus teaches that our eternal security lies in hearing His voice and following Him. That is also where our evidence is of eternal security is found.
As the true sheep hear their Shepherd's voice and follow Him in the way of the cross, they understand why Jesus told those unbelieving Jews what we read in our text in JOH 10:37-38, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. [In other words, if my works do not correspond with my profession, dont believe me.] But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him."
It is for those who by God's grace have learned to know the good Shepherd's voice, and who follow Him in the way of humble obedience to the Father's revealed will that the Lord Jesus Christ lay down His life that they might live.
Look at JOH 10:10-11; "The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life [Who? His sheep.], and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life [for whom?] for the sheep." Who are the sheep? Those who hear His voice and follow Him.
Eternal security does not find its source in our accepting Christ, nor is there any merit on our part. It began in eternity! Our eternal security would not be eternal if it began on a given day. Our eternal security began before the world was created. Our eternal security is indeed eternal. It is from eternity to eternity.
I want you to see this with me in JER 31:3, "The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee." It is because of His eternal love. It is because He has loved His people from before the foundation of the world that He has drawn His sheep. Therefore, He has sent His grace in the soul and drawn us unto Him with lovingkindness.
I want you to see the difference between that and the whip of the law. So many people love to preach hell, fire and brimstone. There is no salvation in such preaching. The Lord Jesus comes to draw, and He draws with His love. Can you tell me anything that has more of a convicting effect on your heart than when you rightly understand the love of the Father in giving His Son, and because He was so wroth with sin, He could not allow one sin to go unpunished? Rather than for one sin to go unpunished, He would put it upon His own Son. His own Son would then give Himself, and He would take that crown of thorns, which is our sins placed upon His head, and He would bear that crown upon the cross. That understanding makes sin exceedingly sinful. Then we see His lovingkindness with such a drawing effect. "Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee." JER 31:3.
He loved us from eternity. He didnt love us for what we have done, and neither will He condemn us for what we have done. He looks upon us in that precious atonement of Christ. Our obedience is not a condition to eternal security, but by God's grace we are brought to follow our Saviour in the way of the cross. It is by the grace of God and by the divine influence of His Holy Spirit upon the heart that we are brought to repent. We are brought to the point we want to follow after and walk in the footsteps of our Saviour in the way of the cross. It is by His divine grace worked upon our hearts that we learn to know Him, which is eternal life. It is by following Him in the way of the cross, crucifying everything of the flesh, crucifying everything of the old man that we learn to know Christ, and it is by knowing Christ that we have eternal security.
I want you to see this in JOH 17:3, "And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent." Knowing Him, knowing the only true God and Jesus Christ, that is eternal life. Eternal security lies in that knowledge of that blessed atoning love of Christ and in that crucifying of that old man and walking in the way of the cross.
Therefore, Jesus says in JOH 10:27-30, "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me." As the grace of God is wrought in the soul, sin becomes exceedingly sinful. Then there is such a desire to do what is glorifying to our God. Then we come to know what it is to be drawn with His lovingkindness. The goodness of God leads us to repentance. Amen.
Mount Sinai, if you read in Exodus 19, drove the people away. The hell and damnation preaching and all this fire and brimstone preaching does nothing but drive us away. The gospel, the preaching of the love of the Father and the love of the Son, the lovingkindness of God, draws us unto Him as a loving Saviour. That is hearing His voice.
Verse 28 says, "And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish [That is wherein lies eternal security], neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand." That provides a foundation upon which we can place our hope.
Satan can do nothing to lure us into sin that can pluck us out of the hand of the Saviour. We may fall in sin, but we dont live in sin. We may fall in a snare or cause others to fall into the snare. The Lord sometimes removes the hedge and allows us to fall in sin, and He has a great purpose for this.
No man can pluck us out of the Fathers hand. All the powers of hell, all the powers of sin, all the depravity of our own hearts, all the enemies of our souls combined, as one master mind, are not able to pluck us out of His hand. What a blessed thing it is to see a great distinction between Gods people and the world. When one of Gods people falls in sin, the Lord doesnt allow them to continue in sin. Think about David. David would have never returned to the Lord, but the Lord didnt let David destroy himself. The Lord sent Nathan the prophet, and Nathan had to come and tell him in 2SA 12:7, "And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the LORD God of Israel."
"Thou art the man." What was the result of Nathans message? Repentance was Davids response, which resulted in reconciliation with his God. It brought him back. Read Psalm 51 and you will see how his soul poured out unto the Lord. Repentance and reconciliation were restored. It is a blessed revelation.
The Scriptures tell us sometimes Gods people fall in sin. Remember Peter. Peter was strong in himself, "And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat." LUK 22:31. Verse 32 begins with, "But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not." The Lord took away the hedge and allowed Peter to deny his Lord. Why? He said to Peter in the conclusion of Verse 32, "and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren."
When Peter learned to understand what it was to fall, he could have that Spirit of Christ in speaking with those who fall. Now, he could strengthen his brethren and not stand aloft as an accuser; now he could talk to them as a brother in adversity. He personally understands the power of sin.
Our blessed Redeemer was tempted in all things even as we are, and now He can so intimately relate to the power and the fascination of that sin. Therefore, we can come boldly unto the throne and receive grace in time of need.
Asaph is another example of one who fell; Asaph fell into envying the proud. Can you imagine a suffering Saviour and the price He paid for Asaphs sin? How would that suffering Saviour look at Asaph as he is envying the proud? Asaph fell into this, and Gods restraining grace preserved him. The Lord did not allow him to fall into their lot. He envied them, but the Lord did not allow him to fall into their portion.
Now look at PSA 73:21-22a, "Thus my heart was grieved, and I was pricked in my reins. So foolish was I." Do you see now what the Lord did? He allowed Asaph to fall into this sin, but He had a good reason for it. The Lord taught Asaph a blessed lesson. He taught Asaph where his true values were. Now I want you to see how Asaph matured and the blessing the Lord left behind. PSA 73:21-23 says, "Thus my heart was grieved, and I was pricked in my reins. So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee. Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand."
See the perfect power of eternal security. Even the sin of Asaphs own heart was not able to pluck him out of his Fathers hand. You see how he has such a hold on that eternal foundation of Gods electing love. He says in Verse 23, "Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand. Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory."
Do you see how Asaph matured spiritually by the Lord allowing him to fall? Sometimes the Lord allows us to fall for the sole purpose of being able to become more spiritually mature.
What a blessed revelation Scripture teaches of our basis for believing in eternal security! Notice PSA 73:25-26 to see now what a basis he gives us for believing. He says, "Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever."
Who was talking here? An Asaph who had fallen in sin is speaking to his Lord. He had fallen into lusting after the pleasures of the wicked and had become envious of the proud. He said, "I was as a beast before thee," but now look where the Lord brought him. "My flesh and my heart faileth: But God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever." In other words, he would never be able to stand in his own strength.
However, now see what this same blessed Scripture teaches about those whose heart has not been renewed, who can enjoy living in sin! I want you to see the distinction now. In PSA 73:27-28 we read, "For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee. [See the difference. They could delight and pleasure in sin. They had no pleasure in God.] But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, that I may declare all thy works."
Do you see now what a blessed testimony we can receive from Asaph? See now why the Lord told Peter, "And when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." Now we hear an Asaph who had fallen in sin, who can tell the wonders of Gods eternal love.
Christ's sheep are helpless in their own strength to stand against the powers of Satan and sin, but those whom the Father has given unto the Son cannot fall away! I want you to see a distinction here. We may fall, but we cannot fall away because underneath are the everlasting arms.
Now, watch what JOH 10:28-30 says, "And I give unto them eternal life [its eternal, they cannot lose it]; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand." They were given unto Jesus by the Father as the jewels of His crown, and no man can pluck the jewels out of our Saviours crown. The old man of sin cannot do it. Satan cannot do it. Our own lustful hearts cannot do it, because those whom the Lord loves He will correct.
Such teaching of the absolute, sovereign, electing love of the Father is an offense to those who love to live in sin. Those who love sin will come and charge God that it is unfair that He chooses because they want to be able to live in sin and still have the reward on the end.
So we see in JOH 10:31-33, "Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me?" They would stone Him to death for the blessed gospel that He had just proclaimed.
What had He said wrong? What had He done wrong? He had healed the sick. He had healed a man who was born blind. He had preached the gospel unto sinners. What had He done that justified stoning Him? They couldnt absorb His doctrine of election of the Fathers free and sovereign choice.
These self-righteous Jews hated Jesus for the same reason that Cain hated his brother, Abel. Jesus asked, "For which of these good works do ye stone me?" Does it even sound reasonable to a rational mind that someone would come against you for something good that you have done? Wait until you have walked the Christian walk for a while, and you will understand.
Look at 1JO 3:11-12, "For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous."
They hated Jesus for His works because their works were evil and His were righteous. 1 John tells us in the verse above that this is the same message we had from the beginning of creation. We had that from the time of Cain and Abel. Jesus was hated for righteousness sake.
Our Saviour tells us clearly why those who are outside of Him hate Him. He tells us so clearly in JOH 7:7, "The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil."
I want to explain something. Many times even a man who has grace, will hate you if you identify a sin until God by His grace gives them repentance. You go to one who is outside of Christ and identify their sin, and they will murder you in thought, word, or deed like they attempted to do to Christ. It is because Christ testified that the works thereof are evil. He is the Light of the world, and when that light shines in the heart and identifies their sin, they become hateful.
Now, when Jesus' sheep hear His voice and follow Him in the way of good works, they will also learn what it is to fellowship in His sufferings. When you start walking in the way of the cross, you start walking in a way that your works identify who you are, and that you have the Spirit of Christ. As you reflect that Spirit of Christ, you will find that you will also fellowship in His sufferings. The attitude of Christ is reflected in you as you walk in the law of love.
JOH 15:18-21 tells us, "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me."
For Christs sake, when Christ is formed in you and the world sees Christ in you, you become the light of the world. It is Christ that they see reflected in you. It is Christ in you, the hope of glory, and when Christ is in you, others see that Spirit of Christ. The world is going to hate you just as it hated Christ.
When Jesus said, "Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me?" that word works must be taken in the broadest sense. That is not only referring to His death on the cross and to His spoken ministry, but our Saviour was appealing to their knowledge of His perfect life of love. He said, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him." (JOH 10:37-38).
He is saying His many miracles that He did in His Father's name to minister to the needs of others were in the way of love, as were the wonderful words of life that He spake unto them. There was a harmony. He said that if the works dont correspond, dont believe, but if My works do correspond, then believe Me.
I want you to see the wonderful words that He spoke, and how they witnessed in their own soul that He was the Messiah. Look at LUK 4:21-2 where every person who heard Him bare him witness; the witness of the Holy Spirit in their hearts told them the wonderful words that He had spoken all bare Him witness. "And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears. And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth [For this they were offended. Why? They were going to prove that what He said doesnt mean anything because of who He is]. And they said, Is not this Joseph's son?" Immediately those wonderful words that He spoken had to be undermined by coming against His credibility.
The true sheep not only hear Jesus' gracious words, but follow His blessed example as we see in TIT 2:11-14. "For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us [The grace of God that brings salvation teaches us] that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world."
There is a distinction between godliness and righteousness. Godliness is a holy reverence for the first table of the law, and that is to love God with our hearts, our souls and our minds, and that is to live in a holy awe and reverence of His will. That is godliness. Ungodliness is just the opposite. Ungodliness is becoming indifferent toward the will of God. Verse 12 continues, "Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works." So many people think Jesus came to redeem us from hell so we can go to heaven. That is not what the Scriptures say. He came to redeem us from all iniquity.
He came to save us from our sins. He came to reconcile His sheep with the will of God, that our hearts might again be reconciled with His perfect will. When Jesus said, "Many good works have I showed you from my Father, for which of those works do you stone me?" These works were said in submission to His Fathers authority. This is godliness; it is a holy reverence for God, His authority, and His holy Word.
I saw a family one time where a little boy needed correcting. The father said to the little boy, "Do that." The little boy looked at him and said, "Why should I?" His father answered, "Because I said so." Then I intervened, and I told the little boy, "You dont do it just because dad said so. You do it because God said to obey your parents, and when God says so, you had better be careful and not disobey." We have to learn that we honor and obey our parents because God said so. We dont obey our parents because dad said so. Do you know why? When we are 21 we can tell dad to go for a walk, but if we live in holy reverence to the will of God, my holy respect for my father hasnt altered because it is the will of God. When we get to be 65, what dad says is still just as important as it was when I was 2 or 3 or 4 because God said so. I am no longer under the supervision of my father, but I still respect him as my father.
We have to learn to understand what it means to deny "ungodliness and worldly lusts." Why? TIT 2:14 says, "Because he gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity." That is one of the Christian pinnacle principles that must be the foundation of all our thinking.
There are many who would delight in knowing that they are elect, just so they can escape their just damnation in hell, but they have no desire to follow Jesus without the camp and to bear His reproach.
So, what are we predestined for? The Bible teaches the doctrine of predestination. I hear so many people say, "Well if I am predestinated I will go to heaven so I can live the way I want to." No. We are not predestined for that. Lets look to EPH 2:10 to find our answer. "For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained [theres where predestination comes in. God has foreordained] that we should walk in them."
The Lord Jesus said, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not." Isnt that a powerful verse? That lays such a responsibility upon us to not bring blasphemy upon our profession by walking outside of His will or by walking in willful rebellion to His will and being unrepentant.
When Jesus said, "Many good works have I shewed you from my Father," we want to see that He speaks with authority.
JOH 17:4 says, "I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do." He glorified His Father by doing the work He gave Him to do. Why do you and I need to walk according to the revealed will of God? Even as the Fathers glory motivated our Saviour, so it must motivate His sheep, who follow Him. What is our motive? Are we heaven seekers? Is it all of our desire just to escape the just recompense of our deeds or are we motivated to follow Gods will for His glory? Are we motivated by love, seeing how He loved us and all that He has done for us? Our love now responds and it is as an echo in our hearts that says, "Lord what wilt thou have me to do that I might do for your glory?"
MAT 5:16 tells us, "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven." That must be our motive behind all we do. We do it because it is for Gods glory. What was the purpose for His creation except that it would glorify Him? Here is the masterpiece of His creation, the one He had created in His own image, that has fallen from the purpose of His creation. Then He sent His own Son, in our human nature, that He might yet be glorified in our human nature, and that His righteousness might now be imputed to us, that we might again be able to walk acceptably before Him in the way of gospel obedience.
"The carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be," as we read in ROM 8:7. This became obvious in the reaction of the Jews to Jesus question, "Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me?" The enmity against God in the carnal mind became so open and became so revealed.
"The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God."
JOH 10:33. They could not deny His works, but they wanted to deny Him. They called Him a blasphemer because His works corresponded with His profession, and they could not deny His works. So now they came against His profession. His profession was that He was the Son of God, and they said that He was a blasphemer.
This enmity did not begin when Jesus revealed His Deity. There was an organized effort to slay Him at birth. Look at MAT 2:13, "The angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him." Now what works were they that they were going to slander Him and kill Him at His birth? What was there in His profession then? The enmity of Satan, the enmity of the evil, carnal heart would slay the Lord Jesus Christ at His birth.
To these unbelieving Jews, who called the Son of God a blasphemer, we again hear such gracious words from our Saviour's mouth. I want you to see the love of the Saviour who was being called a blasphemer. He was being called a devil. He was being hated and they were picking up stones to murder Him. He knows the thoughts and intents of the hearts of everyone, and yet see how graciously He responds.
In JOH 10:36-38 we read, "Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God? [He goes on to show His credentials.] If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not."
What a powerful message! How powerfully He pleads with those unbelieving Jews. He says that the Father has sanctified and sent Him into the world. The Father has set Me apart to redeem His people. The Father has sent Him down to do the work of atonement. These Jews were the ones who had the symbols of that atonement that they performed daily. The daily sacrifices pointed to the very offering He came to make, that He was sanctified for, and He said, "Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God?" Now His credentials are: "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not."
What we see is a powerful a preaching? Do you see how important it is that we dont do something that could bring reproach upon our profession because the world sees it, and they bring blasphemy on the name of God? "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him."
Now, in Christ's sheep as well as His own ministry, works speak louder than words. People tell of their experiences, but until their walk of life corresponds with what they tell, I dont even want to hear it. Do you know why? My Saviour said that if I do not do the works of my Father, dont believe me. I cannot believe all of this profession until the works correspond. It is so important.
We are ordained to hear His voice and follow Him in the way of humble obedience through the crucifying of the flesh.
HEB 10:19-22 says, "Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water."
Do you see where true Christianity lies? Our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience through gospel obedience results in true, humble, repenting remorse over having sinned. Our hearts desire to know and do what is to the glory of our God.
Let us draw near with a true heart of full assurance of faith. We are talking about eternal security and the basis for our eternal security. Where is our evidence of it? Verses 23-24 continue, "Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works." We dont become critical of our fellow man. It is so important that we consider one another.
How do we do properly consider one another? GAL 6:1-2 tells us, "Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ."
That doesnt leave many fingers to point. I heard an expression once that I like. When I am pointing at you, I have three fingers pointing back at me. That is a good thing to remember. Whenever you point a finger at someone else, you have three fingers pointing back at yourself
HEB 10:24-25 says, "And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching." We need exhortation; I need it. You need it. Our children need it. We need to exhort one another, and we need to be faithful to one another in exhortation and so much the more as we see the day approaching.
Due to the unbelief of the Jews at the Temple, Jesus removed into another place where He was better received. In JOH 10:39-42 we read, "Therefore they sought again to take him: but he escaped out of their hand, And went away again beyond Jordan into the place where John at first baptized; and there he abode. And many resorted unto him, and said, John did no miracle: but all things that John spake of this man were true. And many believed on him there."
I want you to think of the awesome picture these verses present of the conclusion of the public ministry of our Saviour. They sought again to take Him, and He escaped out of their hands. Never again did He return to Jerusalem in His ministry except when He came to go on the cross. His public ministry ended there. That is an awesome thought. The public ministry of the Saviour of the world was concluded in Jerusalem by their attempting to take Him. They came against Him for His gracious words, for His teaching them the way of salvation.
JOH 10:37-38 says, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. [He showed His credentials that were so undeniable. They could not come against His credentials, so they undermined His character. They called Him a blasphemer.] But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him."
Our Saviour did return to Jerusalem. His public ministry was ended, and He returned to Jerusalem to finish His Father's work of redemption, lamenting over their ignorance.
Watch this now in LUK 19:41-42, "And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it [That word wept in the original is speaking of a sore lamentation, i.e., wailing aloud and crying out], Saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes."
He was now lamenting, wailing, "If thou hadst known." Why didnt they know? They would not hear His voice. They would not follow Him in the way of the cross, and now He laments over the city. They took up stones to throw at Him for His gracious words. They didnt want to know. They did not love the truth. "If thou hadst known, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now are they hid from thine eyes."
When He said, "Now are they hid from thine eyes," He was telling them His ministry is over. He was not coming here this time to preach the gospel. He has come to seal it with His blood. They have had their day of grace. They were left to the hardening of the heart, and they were now left over to hang Him on the cross. He had now come to give His life for His sheep.
Of His sheep Jesus says in JOH 7:38, "He that believeth on me [See the difference, the distinction.], as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water." He said this, speaking of the Holy Spirit, that shall flow out of our hearts and out of the very being of our souls as living waters, thereby we become a witness and a light unto the world. That Spirit of Christ, that mental disposition, that attitude of the Lord Jesus Christ will pour out on the world as a beacon.
Our text says, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him." (JOH 10:37-38). Amen.
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