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2011-04-03 God's Righteousness is on Our Side

Time: 2011-04-14 Click:
By Bing
03 April 2011 Sunday

 
Bible Verses  John 3:16-17
 
16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
 
17 For God did not send his son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
 
 
 
 
My name is Bing, this is my third time to preach in Haidian church, it’s my privilege to be here, praise God! God loves us, He sent His only begotten Son to save us.
 
Today I talk about God’s righteousness. In John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” God is love, His love is the best perfect love, beyond all comprehension, God is our best Father, our dearly earthly father can’t compare our heavenly Father in every way.   Have you ever heard, when you invite people to a church, some may say, “I’m not good enough, Christianity is very strict, I can’t believe in that now, I need to do business, I have to be practical and smart enough to make money first, afterwards I will think about that.” And maybe even some Christians have different sayings about following God’s laws and advices, or sometimes follow our own desires and understandings.
 
I would say Christianity is about the Gospel.  What is the Gospel? Gospel literally means the Good News. In it, there is full of grace and truth from our Lord Jesus Christ. Apostle Paul says in Romans 1:16-17, " I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes;first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For in the gospel a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith. "  
 
 
 
We all want to see the power of God, and we want to get the power from God, how to get it then? Some say if you read enough Bible; if you pray long enough with well structured words; if you fast longer enough…But that’s not it, “because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes”, Romans 1:16, it’s about faith in God’s salvation. The word salvation is originated from Greek word, it not only means to save, but also means to help get you out of hell into heaven, it means healing, deliverance from every difficulty in our lives, to give power to everyone who are in any difficulty, that’s the power of God. “This righteousness from God, comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference.” Romans 3:22.
 
The Bible says that our own righteousness is with limited power.  In some cultures with tradition of Christian background, for example, if you ask someone randomly on the street, “ How do you know that you are saved, are you sure you will be in heaven in the end?” – “ Well, I work hard, I help out in my church, I give a lot to the poor, I love my family, so I should be able to go to heaven then.” I’d say that’s not the right answer to the point, “it’s because of God’s righteousness that has saved me.” Colossians 2:13, “When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins.”
 
 
How do we get God’s righteousness then, by trying hard of our own, by working hard, by talking and memorizing on Scripture verses?...No, it’s by faith, it’s always by faith. Salvation is always about faith in God, not our own performance by working hard. Once you put your faith in Jesus, obey God’s Word, you will be saved.
 
 
As we just have said, we long to see God’s power and miracles in our lives, the reason why we don’t see them so much, because we fail to put our faith in God, but to put our faith in our own righteousness. Let’s come back to the point – Jesus died on the cross for our sins to save us, He forgives us all sins, our sins from past, present and future before we commit sins. All our sins are forgiven, that is the power of the cross, Jesus took all our sins away on the cross, and set us free.
 
At the same time, God’s righteousness is given to us on the cross. Now we have the righteousness of God when Jesus died for us, He has given us His righteousness. Romans 3:24, “and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.” Jesus has accomplished His great and purposeful mission on the cross, the gift is given freely to us who believe, that gift has brought us home to our Abba Father. Abba is the most intimate word means daddy in Hebrew, and there is power in the word Abba. Some people ask me do we stick to a formula when we pray, other than learning to pray, we can say to God our Father what we like talking to our daddy home. “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of Sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba,Father.’ ” Romans 8:15.
 
 
Do not be distant with God our Father, He is there for us, our real loving Father, He loves us so much. Some say they fear God because of His judgment on us, maybe God keeps a record of sins for each one of us, just like shopping bills. We can read the revalations about Jesus in Psalms, David wrote in the time he was living in the old testament, he got the revelation on Jesus from the Holy Spirit, Oh, how good our Father is, He sends Jesus to save us! “ Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD; O Lord, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy. If you, O LORD, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand?”:1- 4. There is forgiveness from God, if God kept a record of sins of us, every day, every month, who can stand that record? No one, No one can be saved. Psalms 130:1- 4, “ But with you there is forgiveness; therefore you are feared.” The reason why we fear God, not because He judges us, not because He condemns us, but because of His forgiveness and love. What does fear mean? In Deuteronomy 6:13, “ Fear the Lord your God, serve him only and take your oaths in his name.” When Jesus was tempted by the devil in the desert, in Matthew 4:10, “Jesus answered him, ‘Away from me, Satan! For it is written: Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’  ”  Psalms 130.
 
 
Sometimes Satan comes to us and says, like in the garden of eden, trying to bring us down,“You are a sinner, you are not good enough, you call yourself Christian? you are just one of us, you come and follow me better, much easier.” What do you say? What do we say when Satan attacks us? - We show the cross, we point to the cross, we tell the world, it is paid! My sins have been paid by Savior Jesus, it’s on the cross, my Savior has paid my debts, my sins. We are no longer slaves of sin,  no longer doomed to death, we are now children of the living God!   
 
 
Imagine heavenly Father God is sitting on the throne, Satan complains to God, “This man (or woman) has sinned, according to your law, he (or she) deserves to die.” The wages of sins are death, you and I, we should be dead in the end. What does God say? God says to us, “Your debts have been paid by My Son, My Son has died in your place, My Son has given up His life for you!” And God is righteous, He can’t punish our sins twice, it’s all paid up by Jesus once for all, we don’t need to pay twice, we are not cursed any more, not slaves of sin anymore, not slaves of Satan any more, not condemned any more, we are spiritually free, we can see, hear and understand what the Holy Spirit of God tells us now!    
 
 
Jesus took all our iniquity died in our place, He was condemned on the cross, so that we are no longer condemned; Jesus took all our sins on the cross, so we can become righteous; Jesus was cursed on the cross, so that we are blessed in return…“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John (3:16).
 
 
God has paid our debts, our sins, today we not only have God’s love, but also we have His righteousness. Both God’s love and righteousness are on our side. In Romans 8:31, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” Jesus, more than 2000 years ago, came to earth to show us a new life, the only way for eternal life, out of God’s greatest love, Jesus was beaten severely, He was striped shamefully, He took all our sins Himself alone, He was consumed by the fire of God’s wrath, He was tortured, three huge nails driven into His body, He received God’s wrath and judgment in our place, Jesus said on the cross, “God, why have you forsaken me?” The punishment was so severe, the agony was unbearable! As it’s said, that Roman crucifixion is the crudest death penalty in human history.  History has revealed God’s love to the world, “For God did not send his son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3:17.
 
In the end, Jesus cried out with a laud voice on the cross, “It’s finished! ” Yes, all sins of mankind are paid on the cross, the greatest mission in human history is finished! We are free now!  “ The one who believes and baptised will be saved.” Mark 16:16, and now our relationship with God has been restored by Savior Jesus – the most intimate relationship with Father God once again restored, no more curses by death, devil’s scheme has failed. Victory in Jesus, our Savior Jesus has showed us Himself, personally, the way of eternal life! Thanks be to our God!
 
We praise and worship God forever!  Amen! 
 
Come again, Lord Jesus!
 
 
Summary by Claire
 
 
 
 
Worship Song: Father Long Before Creation
  
 
 
Father, long before creation, thou has chosen us in love,
And that love so deep, so moving, draws us close to Christ above.
Still it keeps us, still it keeps us, firmly fixed in Christ alone.
 
 
Though the world may change its fashion, yet our God is ever the same;
His compassion and His covenant, through all ages will remain.
God’s own children, God’s own children, must forever praise His name.
 
 
And the world will sing His love, and the world will sing His love,
and we’ll all join hands, every woman, every man, to sing His love, To sing His love
 
 
God’s compassion is my story, is my boasting all the day;
Mercy free and never failing, moves my will, directs my way.
God so loved us, God so loves us, that His only Son He gave.
 
 
And the world will sing His love, yes, the world will sing His love,
And we’ll all join hands, every woman, every man, to sing His love, To sing His love
 
 
Loving Father now before Thee, we will ever praise Thy love,
And our songs will sound unceasing, till we reach our home above,
 
Giving glory, giving glory, to our God and to the Lamb
Giving glory, giving glory, to our God and to the Lamb
 
 
And the world will sing His love, and the world will sing His love,
And we’ll all join hands, every woman, every man, to sing His love
To sing His love...

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