I Am A Christian Sermon Series Part 2
The Deliverance of Christianity
I Peter 4
Intro: Last week, we looked at The Difference in Christianity.
It is different in:
- Its Founding
- Its Focus
- Its Formula
This morning, we are going to look at The Deliverance of Christianity.
I. The Corruption of our State
The Bible describes a non-Christian as:
Dead – vs. 6 – Ephesians 2:1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;
Unjust – 1 Peter 3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
Lost – Luke 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.
Blind – 2 Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
Condemned – John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Ungodly – Romans 5:6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
Just in Ephesians 2 alone, we are described as:
Without Christ, Without God, Without Hope, aliens, strangers, foreigners,
ILLUSTRATION: The story is told of an atheistic barber who was talking to a pastor. The barber asked the pastor, “If there is a loving God, how can He allow poverty, war, and suffering?”
Just at that moment a disheveled man crossed the street. The pastor said, “You are a barber and claim to be a good one. How can you allow that man to go unkept and unshaven?”
“He never gave me a chance!” the barber replied.
To which the pastor said, “Exactly, men are what they are because they reject God!”
Notice the contrast in the unsaved and the saved:
- We see a Contrast in Thinking – vs. 4; 12 they think it strange; think it not strange
- We see a Contrast in Wills – vs. 2 will of God; vs. 3 the will of the Gentiles; vs. 19 the will of God
- We see a Contrast in Judgments – vs. 5, 6; vs. 17
- We see a Contrast in Lifestyles – vs. 3,4; 7-10
Just in our text, we see:
- A Life of Rebellion – vs. 1-3
- A Life of Running – vs. 4 …they think it strange that ye run not with them…
- A Life of Rioting – vs. 4
Bottom line: We needed a deliverer.
The difference in Christianity and the religion of man is their inability to deliver anyone from anything.
- Colossians 1:13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
- 1 Thessalonians 1:10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.
II. The Compassion of our Savior – I Peter 3:18-22
Christianity has a Savior.
There’s no other religion that has its Founder as the Savior of their souls.
The love and compassion that Jesus Christ has for the sinner is unmatched anywhere:
ILLUSTRATION: The story is told of two liberal sociologists who were walking down the street. They saw a man lying unconscious and covered with cuts and bruises from a terrible mugging. One of the liberals turned to his colleague and said, “Whoever did this terrible deed really needs our help.”
- Matthew 9:36 But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.
- Matthew 14:14 And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick.
- 3 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.
- 4 But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,
- 5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
- 6 Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;
- 7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
ILLUSTRATION: The late Colonel Sanders (of Kentucky Fried Chicken) was on an airplane when an infant screamed and would not stop even though the mother and flight attendants tried every trick they could think of. Finally the Colonel asked if he could hold the baby. He gently rocked it to sleep. Later a passenger said, “We all appreciate what you did for us.” Colonel Sanders replied, “I didn’t do it for us, I did it for the baby.”
III. The Completion of our Salvation
A. It is Finished
When Jesus died on the cross, he bowed his head and said, “It is finished”.
There is nothing you or I can do to add to that.
B. It is Free
ILLUSTRATION: I read about an instant cake mix that was a big flop. The instructions said all you had to do was add water and bake. The company couldn’t understand why it didn’t sell-until their research discovered that the buying public felt uneasy about a mix that required only water. Apparently people thought it was too easy. So the company altered the formula and changed the directions to call for adding an egg to the mix in addition to the water. The idea worked and sales jumped dramatically. That story reminds me of how some people react to the plan of salvation. To them it sounds too easy and simple to be true, even though the Bible says … God saved you by his special favor when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. (Ephesians 2:8-9). Unlike the cake-mix manufacturer, God has not changed His “formula” to make salvation more marketable. The gospel we proclaim must be free of works, even though it may sound too easy.
C. It is Forever
- John 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
lusion: “Christ died for sin. Believers die to sin. Unbelievers die in sin.”—Unknown