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5. Righteousness by Faith

Mark Howard
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Mark Howard

Director, Emmanuel Institute of Evangelism

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  • May 20, 2017
    11:30 AM
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Heavenly father we do thank you for the holy Sabbath Father we thank you for the many blessings today already we ask that your Holy Spirit would continue to draw as near to you and help us to appreciate the salvation that we have in Jesus Christ Father if there are those here today who are on the fence who have not yet committed their lives to you I pray your spirit with speak very clearly to them and that they would hear that gospel invitation Come unto me all you are having they did and I will give you rest and your souls when we ask and pray these things in Jesus name Amen now and. Even thought are going into the subject righteousness by faith this is one of those things that you can get into discussions I'll just leave it at that word discussions and they haven't a church from here until the Lord comes and you probably won't cover everything we know we're talking about the Gospel that we're talking about something that we are going to be studying we're told through eternity and so I'm not going to solve everything today but I do think that there is something about righteousness by faith that can be known and must be known. In the time that we live in now just a little heads up I'm going to share with you a statement in a moment that uses the term Justification by Faith and these come from a root word in the Greek the coyotes soon I mean they're all derived justified justification righteous righteousness. Come from that word righteousness is from that word because to me I want to talk about that a little bit more as we go but today we often use the term righteousness by faith when we're discussing how we receive the righteousness of Christ for justification. And I shared this statement The last time we we in the last message testimonies to ministers page ninety one this is a turning point in our history where Ellen White wrote the Lord in His great mercy sent a most precious message to his people through elders Wagner and Jones this message was to bring more prominently before the world the uplifted savior the sacrifice for the sins of the whole world it presented justification through faith in the surety capital as referring to Christ had invited the people to receive the what the righteousness of Christ has become a clear as we go which is made manifest or evidence in obedience to all the commandments of God and notice what it goes on to say this is the message that God commanded to be given to the world it is the what it is the third angel's message which is to be proclaimed with a loud voice and attended with the outpouring of His Spirit in large measure that last part is referring to what what we call it a seven day evidence the latter ringing OK Is that something that we should be looking for now the reason bringing this up is to let you know that this is the message this idea of righteousness by pay the something that we need now now a statement similar for review an Arab article Ellen White wrote these words several have written to me inquiring if the message of Justification by Faith is the third angel's message and I have answered it is the third angel's message in verity hey this is the message that we are to understand now I'm going to give you some reading assignments. Amen Thank you Pastor hour because I knew I was going to be bored this summer I was get bored I know young people get bored fact go people that I'm bored Well don't worry about being bored because I'm going to give you reading assignments and you're going to love these but this is not for just the youngest is for everybody simply because there are things that I think are very important for us to understand that I can't cover in sermon series The first thing on the list is a book called wounded in the house of his friends and folks I cannot be I would spoke about this is campaigning recently there is a history how many of you heard the statement by Ellen White where she says we have nothing to fear for the future except how God has led us in the past and is teaching our past history I mean you know that I'm going to tell you that this is a history that you have probably never heard I'm just telling you right out you can question that go and pick up the book it's documented history of this era I'm sorry that the statement that we just looked at and it is a glimpse into our history of when we are told by inspiration that the latter rain began to fall upon God's people it's going to happen again which means we need to know what it looks like and I'll tell you there's a lot of seven evidence we don't know what it looks like they don't know what they're looking for I preached on the Laodicean message in my last message at some people say to me wow that was pretty hard hitting stuff that was nothing compared to what you would heard Jones preach in an eight hundred ninety three but some people do think well if you preach the gospel you're going to be pointing out sins like that read down book by Ron Duffield OK The next thing there is zero I got him he's an even easier thing you could Advent audio dot org You can get it on audio for free. And you can listen to it there along with Jones eight hundred ninety three General Conference sermons Ellen White says of those sermons of JONES They were of the Holy Spirit's framing and it was the third angel's message in fact twenty four sermons on the third angel's message and I'm only telling you that because you need to get an understanding of what I get I got people got an idea. What it's supposed to be like We're told that when God's message comes in modern rain power that a lot of God's church members are going to call it a false message in a false light because they're not acquainted with what it's supposed to look like so I'm just this will be for your benefit if you've never read the book faith and works. Look at that. And then look like a hard read does it it's easy every seven am and should read this book I can't cover it up in a sermon to cover all of these things one encourage or. The great controversy just read the chapter modern revivals I'm not going to say any more about that and then in the book Pilgrim's Progress if you've never read the book there's a section in there on a man named hope for his conversion it and that is one of the clearest step by step walk you through what it looks like when you come and accept Christ and I just I wish I could spend more time on that I'm not going to those are for your enjoyment over the summer Amen Thank you Pastor HOWARD You're welcome now let's talk about righteousness by faith when we're told we're going to see my face we're going to start out with righteousness what are we talking about when we're talking about righteousness Now I did you a favor today and put the texts on the screen and I'm going to get Isaiah forty five nineteen OK and the Bible says I the Lord speak what righteousness I declare things that are right what's the root word OK righteousness is what's right according to God not what's not according to you not according to me everybody has a version of right righteousness is God's idea of right let's start with that idea and we're going to build on it. I'm going to ask you a question how does God define right from wrong and you know what God's standard of right and wrong is someone one thousand one seventy two says my tongue shall speak of your word for what all your commandments are righteousness we call the Law the Ten Commandments God's moral law a right it defines right from wrong righteousness is what's right according to God The Ten Commandments are description of righteousness This is why the Bible says in Deuteronomy Chapter six. And the LORD commanded us to observe all these statutes to fear the Lord our God for our good always that's an important point isn't it why does God ask us to obey Him because He wants us to do well he does but it's not for his good is for our good always that he might preserve us a lot as it is to this day no notice then it will be what righteousness for us if we are careful to observe all these commandments before the Lord our God as He has commanded us now what we're going to see is we go on you've heard this before is we we can't do that in our own strength there's no way we're keeping it but the Bible says if we were to be careful to observe everything in God's law it would be righteousness for us because the law of God is the law fractiousness it's a standard of righteousness it's a description of righteousness However I need need us to understand something about this the long term the Ten Commandment law is more than just the ten. Commandments there's a spiritual aspect to the law of God right Bible says in Romans Chapter seven the part of the Apostle Paul says the law is spiritual but I'm carnal sold under sin it's a spiritual law there's more to it than what is on the surface much like. You know we we've heard that the Ten Commandments is a transcript of God's character. OK. But the commandments fall short of revealing God's character to us the same way a picture falls short of revealing the individual and I can tell you I'm having lunch with my daughter today and you can come down to the. Fellowship meal and I be sitting at the table with this put it right on the table there is my beautiful daughter Anneliese There she is just having lunch together. Oh that's a little don't you have a son too although I brought him I brought him we have I meet with my kids today OK now a picture is great I can look in the picture and I can get certain things from my son and my daughter but that's not the same as my son son and daughter is it folds a little short of the reality and we need to understand that as much as the righteousness of God is in the commandments only the Holy Spirit can help us to see the fullness of it the righteousness of God is not just a list of things OK this is why it says in the book of Isaiah fifty one verse seven I notice but the Lord says through the prophet Isaiah listen to me capital M. This is God talking you who know righteousness you people in why. In whose heart is my law so we're just going one step or the horror of further the law of God that shows the righteousness of God but it's not complete until it becomes part of the life. OK when you're talking about righteousness in the Bible righteousness has to do with character. Has to do with holiness I want you to notice now the Greek word I mentioned in the New Testament that's translated righteousness is the word because soon I notice what the dictionary that the Strong's dictionary definition is of this. It means integrity virtue purity of life right now this I get this correctness of thinking feeling and acting. OK that's far more than outward behavior. So if it could be possible that a person could outwardly keep the Ten Commandments they're still falling way short of what the Bible is saying righteousness is OK I just want you to understand we're talking about righteousness what we're talking about is the essence of the character of God The essence of the goodness of God a rightness of correctness of thinking feeling and acting this is what it means to be spiritual OK Now hold on to that we're going to develop a little bit further righteousness according to the Bible is the requirement for heaven. OK First Corinthians six verse nine tells us this do you not know that the WHO THE own righteous will was not inherit the kingdom of God OK righteousness is a requirement for heaven. I want you to notice the statement from review and herald of September twenty one it says Why cannot those who claim to understand the Scriptures see that God's requirement under grace is just the same as he made in Eden perfect what perfect obedience to His law because that constitutes righteousness and incidentally perfect obedience can never be just outward it has to come from the heart. Goes on to say in the judgment God will ask those who profess to be Christians why did you claim to believe in my son and continue to transgress my law. The gospel of the New Testament is not the Old Testament standard lowered to meet the sinner and save him in his sins folks I'm going to tell you I meet far too many Christians who think that the gospel just lowers the requirement but I want you to get something very clear here the reason that God's requirement for Heaven is so high and don't miss this is it has to be weighed more than we can ever do by ourselves OK because otherwise we would think we could do it by ourselves God makes the standard impossible I've had people say you know sometimes you make you make some patients sound impossible it is without Jesus Christ in the whole idea is it's got to be so far out of my reach that I'd never think that I can reach it in my own strength this was the problem in Christ's day the fairest sees thought that they were keeping the standard of righteousness and Jesus said in Matthew five Verse twenty I have a slide coming up unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and pharisees you would by no means enter into heaven. Today the way people talk as well you don't have to be like a parrot no you don't want to be like version going to be more than it's impossible in and in to lower the standard of Christianity let me tell you what it does to lower the standard for Christianity is to perpetuate ferrous the ISM and self-righteousness in the church. Is the only reason Fair see Islam exists because you can go around like a look at I'm all that and then some until Jesus showed up right the fair sees. Everybody thought the Farriss were the greatest until Jesus showed up and in contrast they saw what true righteousness was the gospel the New Testament is not the Old Testament standard lowered to meet the sinner and save him in his sins God requires of all his subjects obedience entire obedience to all his commandments he demands now as ever perfect righteousness as the only title to heaven I know that's kind of heavy but it needs to be. And I'll talk about why that is in a moment the question the following question is this we see righteousness is this is more than our behavior is the essence of of how you think and how you act and how you feel. It's the it's the very it's being as good as God which we're not and that that's the question righteousness is required for heaven. How much of it do we out. How much righteousness do we have according to Scripture as the text Matthew five twenty Romans three tells us this in verse nine there is none righteous no not what not one there is none who understands there is none of the six after God They have all turned aside they have together become unprofitable there is none who does good no not one OK going on to Isaiah sixty four six we are all like an unclean thing and all our righteousnesses are like was filthy rags so here we have righteousness we need it it's required to get into heaven and we have zero Are you with me so far. Notice this statement this is a really fascinating statement from the kind of Ellen White she says and first like the messages three forty four the religious services the prayers the praise the penitent confession of sin ascend from whom I mean you got to hold on to this here we're not talking about the guy who's waste in the morning drinking mounted wherever else or carousing out at night or whatever this is the religious service Oh of. True believers and all of these things the prayers the praise the penitent confession of sin a sin they go up to God as incense to the heavenly sanctuary but passing through the corrupt channels of humanity that's us they are so defiant that unless purified with blood the blood of Christ they can never be of value with God. OK So we have zero righteousness is that clear and yet we have to have total righteousness to enter in to heaven so how do we get it. You probably know if you use this two eight nine I want to highlight a couple things here the Bible says For by grace you have been saved through faith and that was not of yourselves it is the gift of God Not of works lest any should boast I want to start of the second thing their new minister thinks not of yourselves and not of works these are different not of works means there's nothing I can do to manufacture the righteousness I need to get into heaven I can do anything my works are never going to mount to it but this other part is really good too not of yourselves it goes deeper than the works not of yourselves means there's nothing OK Not because you're a music department now because your own arrows not because you're an heir of the Bill Gates fortune not because your brother in law is the mayor I mean in other words and there's nothing in your family line there's nothing in it that the. Your race or your creed or the amount of money that you have or fame you have or anything of yourself the Somebody's going to say Well Tim Look you know Dave did to me you come on in aren't you aren't you the nephew of the mayor you know whatever else there's no he's not the nephew just so you know I was just that's an illustration the idea is not of yourselves not of works the Apostles just trying to make it very clear that we don't have righteousness and there's nothing in us that will ever produce it so where do we get it. Where you know the kind of the answer if you've been following along in the last few weeks couple weeks ago the message was Christ Our Righteousness I want you to notice Romans Chapter one The Bible says Romans one verse sixteen for I am not ashamed of what the Gospel of Christ for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes for any good that is in the Gospel the what. The righteousness of who God is revealed. Is there any other righteousness. There isn't this is why when the rich young ruler came to Jesus and he said good teacher Jesus said Why do you call me good there is only one who is good and that is God. There is no other righteousness to be found knock yourself out and that's what people do they go through life to try to find righteousness so let me make this no more practical because we're talking all the illogical stuff I got a the deacon head deacon gave me of a pit want to puke cards that we have these all cards you can fill out turn one of those into me this last week didn't have a name on it. Said something along these lines. Why do we have to come here and sit in church every week and pretend that we enjoyed the service and listen to all of this preaching that tells how bad we are and dress up like we're going to a funeral etc etc OK now I'm be honest with you. There was no name I don't know if it came from a young person or over person but here's what I want you to understand. The Bible tells us in first Corinthians two that foolish spiritual things are foolishness to those who are perish. When you start talking about how church service is just a drag what you're doing is confessing that you're perishing. That's what you're doing look I'm going to you know I'm not saying that there isn't some part that might drag out but that's the way I thought before I came to Christ when I came to Christ and I can tell you church services that I would have been a drag to me before but things change when you're converted because when you're converted you receive righteousness righteousness is spirituality righteousness is that state of loving spiritual things we don't none of us naturally has it so this is not a criticism of anyone here but if you don't love spiritual things that's just emphasizing what the Apostle saying here with the Bible saying you need righteousness imma say I don't want to have that kind of life Look it's required for heaven there are things that may not seem appealing I'll tell you before I became a Christian when I was in my mid twenty's nothing about church sounded any bit remotely interesting to me didn't sound like it was anything that was worthwhile but through a certain. Chain of events the Lord showed me my need for something different Listen you can have a guy who gets upset with his wife and beats his wife and kids and doesn't think there's any problem with that right you may say you know I don't know I don't think it's a problem that I don't love spiritual things there are a lot of people think they don't have a problem with a lot of different things I consider a person could be his wife and kids and say I don't see a problem with that but God sees a problem with that and ultimately it's not going to bring that person. The happiness that God intends for them to have that he might preserve us always has said in Deuteronomy in the Gospel the righteousness of God is revealed if you don't love spiritual things you're just saying I need the righteousness of Christ I don't have any and that's exactly what the Scripture tells us. So the Bible says in Matthew chapter six that we are to seek first his kingdom and is righteousness is the only kind of righteousness to be had. So when we're talking about righteousness by faith we're simply talking about righteousness by no other way you've got to know what righteousness is it's it's that state of being righteous of being holy of being of having a Christ like character it's God's goodness righteousness by faith when we use that term it just means you can't get it any other way you can't gives not of yourselves it's not by works that you do it's not because if you're related to. Righteousness comes by face only and we have to have it and that begs the question how do I exercise faith in order to have righteousness How do I get righteousness by faith this is a question we all should wrestle with a should have wrestled with because if you haven't you don't have righteousness now the Lord gives us a very clear. Illustration for how to find the righteousness of Christ and lay hold of that in our own lives and we're going to spend the rest of our time in the book of Romans Chapter four we're going to look at a person a man that the Bible calls the father of the faithful and he was Abraham the father of the faithful because Abraham's faith was a model faith for those who would afterwards be justified by Christ and you're going to see that as we go through the passage we're going to put them on the screen here I'm picking up in Romans Chapter four verse three I'm going to explain a little bit of the story of Abraham to you in just a moment I want to start out here where the Bible says For what does the Scriptures say Abraham believed God and it was accounted to him. For righteousness let's go into the let me give you a little back story. OK God called Abraham. Time and called him a broom. Genesis Chapter twelve in fact a few were support for that call them out of his homeland the land of Irv the Cal D's to the land of Canaan. Abrams was seventy five years old. Now I know people who are in their thirty's and say I like it where I live and I don't want to relocate I'm going to tell you the last time you ever want to relocate is when you're seventy five that's when you're settling down not only you know I look I I hope I'm not out of turn here but I know we've got members here and they're not they're not maybe pushin seventy five but you know they start to look to southern shores and instead of saying we live in Michigan and there's this little panhandle down at the bottom of the country this starts looking really good to people OK OK I'm talking about Florida and you get a lot of snowbirds that think oh I'm going to and I'm going to tell you something that when people start thinking you know I'm getting old I hate spending the winters here and I want to go somewhere warmer I'm going to tell you what they do the research. Nobody to say I'm just going to head on don't know you're going to research are going to look ahead with where I'm in a status and property in American important cetera et cetera look at the travel brochures get online Abraham did not have a travel brochure or. God did not come to Abraham and say hey listen I want you to go to came in your seventy five years old pick up everything and move by the way here's the portfolio check it out see if it looks good to you it wasn't there it was simply God said I'm going to impact the scripture says it this way he called the road to go he said to a land I will show you and without question Abraham when. God told Abraham the he was going to make him Oh father of many nations. Seventy five years old you go on in the story through Genesis and you find that some time later God comes to Abraham is talking to Abraham said Lord I don't understand it see you said I'm going to be this great nation but I don't even have one kid and I'm going to have multitudes of kids if I don't even have one kid now you have to have to understand this about Abraham as well his wife was barren he that meant she could not biologically produce she couldn't have children this had been going on and on she they tried and she can have kids that's what the Bible said and God says I'm going to make you great nation you got to start with one right so they have this discussion in Genesis Chapter fifteen and Abrams said Lord I don't understand how you can make me a great nation I don't even have one child the only thing I got close to a child is a servant in my home named a leader and the Lord says Abraham let me show you something and he takes him outside and he shows him on a starry night clear starry nights you see the stars up there is your descendants are going to be as many as a star and it was in response to that the Bible says it Abraham believed God and it was counted to him for righteousness that we talked about that before imputed put to his account as if you know as you do you have a bank account somebody has swipes a deposit taken fills out information a clue puts ten thousand dollars in there God deposit it is write his righteousness into Abraham's account why because Abraham believe God That's what the Bible tells us so Abraham asked God God says yeah look we're going to we're I'm going to give you a son Abraham believe God time passes now Abraham's eighty six years old. Hasn't had a child yet his wife comes to me says I got an idea maybe you know God said I was going to your kid didn't say I was going to be my kid I mean after all I'm barren why don't we do this you can go and sleep with my servant girl you'll get her pregnant she will have a child that would be yours and hers but it has to be your child and then we'll work out God's promises our own way there's a lot I could say about that but that's exactly what Abraham did he had a child named Ishmael. Years and years went by in Abraham's mind in his wife Sarah's mind they were sure that Ishmael was going to be the one. And now when Abraham is ninety nine years old and Sarah is ninety years old God comes to Abraham he says oh by the way remember that promise you I'm going to give your child. Every human is is a wait a minute Lord I mean I have a child we worked out I've got Ishmael in he's going to God says no no no it's going to be from you and your wife does anybody remember what Abraham did at that point you laughed at God. Let me ask you something Have you ever laughed at the idea of God doing something great with your life. There's no way he could do that he laughed at God He told Sarah Sarah laughed at God and yet she had that child and they called his name Isaac which means laughter God's promise was fulfilled to Abraham now would you need that back history to understand the the Apostle Paul is building on this story to teach you and me what it means to believe in God for righteousness. Abraham believed God and it was accounted to him for righteousness Now let me make a point here if you read it in Genesis it says Abraham believed in God. And I'm glad Paul quotes the way he does because there's a difference between believing in God and believe in God. OK believing in God is I believe God exists but how many times do you come to what God says in His Word in his Am I don't know if that applies to me you don't believe God you just believe in go which you really don't because you believe God if you believed in him OK you get some counsel from God to his last day church when you read and you say I just don't think it's important to follow that you not believe in God when we begin to question those things what we're doing is we're putting our own judgment in the place of God for putting our own wisdom in the place of God When the Bible tells us Abraham believe God Look there was no stitch of evidence Abraham added anything was going to work out. But God said it and Abraham believed it. Abraham believed God. And from that point it was counted his recklessness now that Paul goes on in this story. I want you to notice some things he brings out in this passage God's promise to Abraham this is Romans four sixteen and seventeen I've added that hurt in brackets just to so you don't go through the whole passage God's promise to Abraham is not only to those who are of the law and he's speaking just of the Israelites but also to those who are of WA In other words his promises are to those who believe like Abraham believed. Who is the father of do us all as it is written I may be the father a father of many nations. So what the Apostle Paul just told us right here is when God showed Abraham the stars he was showing Abraham you. Not just it wasn't just the Jews it wasn't just his natural lineage it were it was that all those who would have the same faith that Abraham had it's those who believe like Abraham that received the righteousness of God through Jesus Christ OK now this is where it gets to me very important very interesting. It continues on in verse seventeen I'm going to preface this by telling you that Paul is about to describe to us the way Abraham understood God the way Abraham viewed God. In the presence of Him whom Abraham believed God. Who does what. Gives life to the dead and Kohls those things which do not exist what as though they did I don't want to miss this. Folks I'm going to tell you people question things in the scripture because they don't understand how it could happen like the Bible said. People who don't believe in creation they don't believe in the miracles of Christ they don't believe in the virgin birth because they say I don't understand how it could happen notice what it says the way Abraham looked at God the way he believed in God in the way he believed God was that God can give life to the dead and you can call things that don't exist as though they did what kind of limits can you put on God when you believe that there. Is there anything God can't do when you believe like there is no in this is where they go to understand that this is what polls telling us this is what it means to have faith it's if you're struggling with a sin in your life you're just like I can't ever overcome it are you believe in God Do do you believe God can give life to the dead. Now when you're saying I just don't think I can ever I don't know God can forgive me I think I'm always going to be a slave to this habit no you not believe in God can give life to the dead are you believing that God can call things into existence that don't even exist and the greatest thing that God calls into existence is righteousness in your life how much righteousness do we say we have how much do we need we need all of that and where are we going to get it if we can't believe that God can put righteousness where it doesn't exist. You follow that I mean this is the example scripture is giving us that Abraham believed that God could do the impossible now gets better it's just described in the Gabriel believe God was one who could give life to the dead and call those things which do not exist as though they did continue on describing Abraham he says who contrary to hope in hope believed so that he became the what the father of many nations let's talk about this contrary to oh what did I say about his wife. She was bearing right in her prime she couldn't have children now it comes and she's ninety years old if you can have children in your prime you know I haven't when you're ninety. OK contrary to hope in other words there was nothing in circumstantial evidence that told Abraham this was possible there was not a shred of a hope in what he could see where was the hope. According to what was spoken. Are you getting what that send. When circumstances looked impossible or Abraham was clinging to what the promise is of God He said it doesn't matter whether I can figure it out or not God said it. And God is able to do it according to what was spoken now he continues on oh let me hear the statements testimonies Volume two page six sixty two says this A mammal act out what all the faith that he has we get in these debates over faith and works we're not saved by works and we're not saved by works I'm going to tell you a person X.L. of faith they have in a person is not acting out they don't have any faith Abraham acted out he picked up and moved because he had faith in God and when I put it this way in Peterson prophets page one twenty six Abraham's on questioning obedience is one of the most striking evidences of faith. In all the Bible what is our obedience. What's it say it's an evidence of our faith if I'm not obeying what am I really doing I'm evidencing I don't have faith don't don't lose them those things go together now Paul continues to talk about Rumi says in not being weak in faith he is speaking of AM did not consider his own body already dead since he was about one hundred years old. That sounds kind of cruel almost. And the dead hope no he's pushing one hundred here and the dead serious whom he's trying to make a point of course from a biological standpoint having children or what have you two things I want to than those that he brings up. That kept Abraham's faith strong he didn't consider what was the first thing. His own body. What does that include. Think about this for a minute how many times has God told you to do something and the first thing you look at is your ability to do it what are you considering. You consider your own body that's worth talking about how many times God told you to do something or colder for confessed something or or or promised you victory and something unusual look at yourself you say I can't try that so many times what are you looking at. Your own body if Abraham did look at his own body. There would be a hopeless he didn't consider his own personal weakness Don't miss this if you want to have saving faith you can't be thinking about your own weakness are you weak Yes and my weak yes we could sit here all day how long you got up pull up a chair and let me tell you about all my weaknesses was not about me in it's not about you it's about what God can do through was an innocent for us Abraham did not consider his own weaknesses nor or any and he said as the deadness of Sarah's room what's that have to do with if the body has to do with our own weaknesses what do you think that other Per has to do with it put yourself in Abraham shoes what was the dentist of Sarah's room. That was opposing circumstances right the circumstances are impossible even if I felt I was strong it's impossible because Earth circuit have children. To things the Bible's very clear about that Abraham did not give any kind of thought to. He refused to look at his own weakness in refuse to look at his circumstances and let him hold him back. It didn't matter whether the circumstances around him looked impossible he believed to be owned who he could see and feel. Brothers and sisters do not miss this that Bible of faith goes far beyond feeling. I was talking with Pastor Daniel he says we have some young people that are thinking about baptism and they're they're not quite sure they're ready Well you know that sometimes yes that's the case. But sometimes we're waiting for a feeling that's never going to come the Christian life is not about feeling a certain way when you say today I want to commit my life to Jesus then do it. Now wait until you feel a certain way the devil play all around with your feelings Abraham did not consider his own body he did not consider the dead necessarily whom he was looking at his weaknesses he wasn't looking at circumstances he believed what God said. There may be some here today who feel like you're sitting here thinking I'm never going to be able to be the kind of person God wants me to be Says who. God doesn't say that. God promises you his righteousness and through his righteousness you can be everything he wants you to be. Abraham did not consider these things notice but he goes on to say he did not waver the promise of God through unbelief but was strengthened in faith giving glory to God and don't miss this last part being what how convinced fairly convinced that what he or God had promised he'd God was also able to perform therefore it was accounted to him for righteous In other words what the Apostle Paul is telling us is it wasn't just Abraham believe God it was Abraham believe God this way is because Abraham believe that God could call things are dead as other living is because he believed God to call into existence things that weren't is because he didn't consider his own weakness but consider God's strength is because he believed that whatever God promised no matter how impossible it seemed God could do and that kind of faith brought to him the righteousness of Christ now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed to him but also for him. For us it shall be imputed to us who believe in the test goes on but that's the point if possible says we don't have righteousness we looked at that we need righteousness we need a new birth we need conversion we need that character of God in us we can't produce it it isn't in our blood line it is nor association with a great men of the earth but it is in Jesus Christ and He will freely give it to all who have the kind of faith exercise the kind of faith that Abraham had which is believing the word of God beyond what you think or feel. Having full confidence that whatever God promises you God can do in spite of you is that the kind of faith that you have today and let me tell you something if you say no I don't have that kind of phase you know what God says he'll even give that to you. I mean how can you lose the Lord will give us all things that pertain to life and godliness Peter tells us I want to finish with this statement in the book faith in works this is that summer reading just a reminder which is full of very clear explanations much more than I can do in this particular message righteousness. Is obedience to the low. And I we could say more you know Thurl from the heart what have you the law demands righteousness and this the sinner owes to the law but he is was incapable over entering it the only way in which he can attain to righteousness is through faith which is why we don't talk about righteousness any other way it's our righteousness by faith because the only way you're going to get it by faith he can bring to God the merits of new Christ you can do that come before God without laying them come before God with Christ bring the merits of Christ and the Lord places the obedience of his son to the sinners account. Is not powerful. You have to look at your bad track record the Lord places the obedience of his son to your account just like he imputed righteousness Taber him as a cow. Christ's righteousness is accepted in place of man's failure brothers and sisters that takes every excuse off of our lives there is nothing no reason we should be kept from the kingdom of God. Christ's righteousness is accepted in place of man's failure and God receives pardons justifies the repentant believing soul treats him as though he were righteous and loves him as he loves his son this is how faith is accounted righteous righteousness. Now we can get into all kinds of theological discussions but at the core of it it's right there Abraham believed God and God put righteousness in his account the question today is are you are you willing to believe God Are you willing to venture out are you willing to just say Lord help me to how the face of a break here. How many of you here today want to receive the righteousness of Christ is that your desire today God recognizes those hands now less and it's easy to raise my hand here but when we go out of this building when God gives you direction when God tells you what to do you believe God you go like Abraham when you ask God for the strength. Of some of you here you have been wrestling over giving your lives to Christ some of you maybe it's the decision of baptism. Some of you you haven't even made the decision to follow Christ yet I want to encourage you there are cards I mentioned to you in the pews we read them. And if there is something that you a commitment you want to make if you were wrestling with this maybe you have a question maybe you want to make a decision maybe say I want somebody visit with me you take one of those you fill that out I would love to visit with you on the pastoral staff would love to visit with you and help you with that decision but. My friends we don't have a lot of time left. We have the righteousness of Christ freely offered to us. And the fact of the matter is that we don't appreciate it nearly as we should or to read a statement recently that said he was speaking of the Jews and said because they had such great light and privileges but didn't respond to them they were the most hard hearted people in the world the hardest to reach with the truth. You connect the dots with that we sit and yawn through sermons that are offering the righteousness of Christ we haven't laid hold of it yet something is wrong. And this coming a day when we will wish we had laid hold of the righteousness of Christ why wait now is accepted time the apostle says now is the day of salvation or encourage you to day to make your decision to give your life to Christ amen. Now you had with me please as we pray. Father in Heaven Father as we reflect upon these things today what a bankruptcy we have. When it comes to goodness and righteousness or there's nothing that we have that we can offer to you and yet so freely you have offered us the righteousness of your own Son Jesus Christ you go over to your righteousness through him the righteousness that comes by faith. Father as we looked at the scripture and seen the faith of Abraham that implicit unquestioning trust help us to have better same kind of faith that we would believe that whatever you promise you are able to perform that you can transform our lives and do wonderful things in into us father a pray a special prayer for our young people we have seniors here today who are going to be moving on. To various places some of them have an idea some of them haven't even processed it yet the Lord you know all things and you have a great work for them to do and I pray that they would see that I call in their lives that they would experience that righteousness of Christ. That would give them that fullness joy. A Father blesses to the remaining hours of the Sabbath as he says in this media was brought to you by audio first a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse or if you would like to listen to more sermon leader Visit W W W dot audio Verse dot org.

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