God Bomb

by

GOD BOMB

 

PORTION OF SCRIPTURE TO BE READ BEFORE SERMON:

Romans 1:1-16

 

Paul’s letter to the Romans is a great theological essay by Paul. He hasn’t been to Rome yet, so he’s writing down (or dictating) what he normally preaches. This whole book is FILLED with theology I suggest you read it. “I don’t like theology! Theology is boring.” Then I worry for you because theology is studying rightly who God is. And orthodoxy leads to orthopraxy. Right doctrine, sound theology is the foundation of right living. That being said, we’re going to tackle a little bit of theology.

 

What is the most powerful thing you can think of?

 

 

What is the Gospel?

The word we use as “gospel” is, in Greek, “euaggelion (you-an-guh’-lee-on),” literally meaning, “Good News!”

 

So “gospel” is good news. How is it good news… well… let’s do some quick systematic theology, look at the verses in the Bible that talk about “gospel” and see what Scripture says about “gospel.” The gospel makes glad, God blesses those who acclaim it, stands forever, causes separation from the world and unity with God, is a refuge, is the light and zeal of the Lord, it ends in death, BUT is able to transform and is a new covenant. Yes… this new covenant…

 

The Gospel is a new covenant, a better covenant making the old obsolete, a way into the Holy of Holies. It is truth, teaching, sound teaching, sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ. You can see Trinity in the gospel! It is of God, of God to be obeyed, of the blessed God, of God’s grace, word of God, about Jesus Christ, of Christ, of the glory of Christ, word of Christ, mystery of Christ (indeed a mystery revealed!), the ministry of the Spirit. It is the good news of the Kingdom and preached to the whole world, of reconciliation, of peace, of life. It is like a mustard seed planted, like a treasure, like yeast, like fine pearls, like flour being worked into dough, like a hobo being invited to a great fancy banquet. It is fulfillment of prophecy, message of salvation, word of faith, brings eternal reward.

Paul loves it and has taken it to heart so much that he calls it “my gospel” and it is for “your salvation,” all of this free of charge.

AND IT HAS POWER!!

 

Wow! So, what is the message of the gospel? What is this good news? Paul writes:

3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,

–1 Cor 15:3-4

 

The message of the gospel is then “that Christ (Jesus, God’s only begotten Son. Homoousia. Fully God and fully man. 2nd person of the Trinity.) died for our sins (the punishment of breaking God’s Law [aka sin] is death, so Jesus Christ took than punishment so we would not have to endure it.) according to the Scriptures (all of it written down in the OT), that he was buried (He was dead! Burial is what you do with dead bodies! As the OT metaphor goes, “he slept with his fathers.”), that he was raised on the third day (BAM! God’s stamp of approval for the sacrifice, confirmation of the deity of Jesus) according to the Scriptures (again, all of it foretold).” Got it?

 

The gospel… reveals Jesus, speaks mainly of Jesus, leads simply to Jesus, and this makes it “glad tidings of great joy,” to a poor, lost, ruined, tried, and tempted sinner!

— Octavius Winslow

 

What is the power?

Let’s look at that word “power” now… It comes from the Greek word “dunamis” from which we get the English word for “dynamite.”

 

What kind of power are we talking about? Will it destroy a house? A block? A city?? No. This a power greater than any tornado, hurricane, earthquake, tsunami, or thermonuclear warhead. This power is amazing… look to Ezekiel 36:26, (this is the Lord talking) “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.” That’s right. It has a power greater than destruction and death. Is has the power of creation and life. Think of it this way. I can, alone, kill someone. But what about creating another life? I need someone else! I can light a fire and destroy this building. But! It takes teams of architects and engineers and electricians and plumbers and construction workers to create a building. You with me here? Destruction is easier than creation! How then does the gospel create? Romans 10:12-15, “12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’

14 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the

feet of those who bring good news!”

 

Now, we put those verses, Ezekiel 36:26 and Romans 10:12-15, together and we conclude that the Holy Spirit uses the preaching of the gospel (the good news about Jesus Christ) to bring new life to the glory of God the Father. THAT is the power of the gospel.

 

So unlike dynamite, which can only destroy, the gospel has power to bring eternal life.

 

 

How do we use the Power?

 

Let’s go back to 1 Cor 15. Now let’s read vv 1-4.

 

1 Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.

3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,

–1 Cor 15:1-4

 

This “gospel” was “preached” to them! That’s the first way we use it. Preached, “euaggelizo (yü-än-ge-lē’-zō).” (Sound like euaggelion?) It was “passed on,” “paradidomi,” meaning “delivered verbally.” Also has a shade of meaning, “to deliver to one something to keep, use, take care of, manage.” Paul preached the gospel to the Corinthians, giving it to them verbally so they could use it. “Excuse me, could you hold my bomb?”

 

 

Go to Luke 24:46:-49

46 He [Jesus] told them [the disciples], “This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”

 

So then, gospel (death and resurrection of Christ repentance and forgiveness of sins) is to be what? PREACHED! Greek word used here is “kerruso” which means “to be a herald: to proclaim always with the suggestion of formality, gravity and an authority which must be listened to and obeyed.”

 

Let’s be clear before we go further: The gospel is not a slogan on a T-shirt. The gospel is not a bumper sticker. The gospel is not “God bless you!” when someone sneezes! The gospel is the power of God! Given to us in Scripture, preached faithfully from the pulpit (hopefully), and meant for us to believe in and to use! The gospel must be spoken! It is not a joke, it is not a slogan. It is not a WWJD bracelet. It is eternal life!!

 

Nothing can tame savage hearts but the regenerating power of the blessed Gospel.

— John MacDuff

 

Ro 10:14-15

 

Who do you know who is not saved? Tell them about the gospel. If you are saved, you know the gospel! You can’t separate the two! Any newborn Christian can preach the gospel! “Hey! I was a filthy, wretched, God-hating, sinner. And by His grace, through faith I turned from my sins and put all my trust and hope in Jesus Christ who took the punishment I deserve! And He saved me!” That’s number one way to use the power of the gospel. Preach it. Speak it. Say it.

 

Now, if you are like me, the thought of going up to Mr. or Ms. Random Stranger and saying that frightens you. (I don’t know why. I know well the power of the gospel. I’m not ashamed of it, but I struggle with the flesh.) But you want all of humanity to hear the gospel some how, there is option two, “Hey. Did you get one of these?” Hand them a tract. Tracts, the good ones, explain sin, God’s Law, Jesus’ sacrifice for us, repentance and faith. Many times looking quite snazzy so that people will actually want one. They take the tract, GREAT! If not, “No thank you.” Your world isn’t over, they haven’t blasphemed the name of the Lord… all’s well.

 

Lastly, and this is completely inseparable from the first two, right gospel living. Do you honour your parents? Those in authority (pastors, managers, teachers, police!)? Do you care for people in need? Let me put it this way. Would you be willing to give the smelly kid at school who never eats lunch YOUR lunch money and sit and chat with her? Then you may know her dad lost his job and fell into alcoholism, and mom’s hours got cut, they lost the house and the family is living in their van. She smells because she only has a chance to shower once a week. People will then wonder about you… you know what to say to them then? Go back to point one. “I act this way because of change the Holy Spirit has done in me. Let me tell you about the gospel.”

 

So… Let me tell YOU about the gospel. God is holy. He is perfect. He is without flaw or fault or failing. Every biblical encounter with God shows the person complete undone. Why? Every one you see including the man speaking now, is a sinner. Sin… it is the ultimate in law breaking. It is disrespect, even treason, to the Creator of the universe. That illegally downloaded or ripped music? Theft. Showing you aren’t content with what God provides. Oh! I left my homework at home, I’ll bring it tomorrow. When you hadn’t done it… that’s a lie. That’s like trying to create a reality better than the one God made. Sex was made to solidify the intimate union between a man and woman. Yet sex treated with no more honour and dignity than going to the movies. Haven’t done that one yet? Well… have you drooled over that football player? That girl in your class? Jesus said doing that is already committing adultery in your heart. No difference than if you went ahead and did it. Yes. That makes you, and me, and everyone sinners. Now, God is just. He must punish sin, and the punishment for sin is death. Not just live 90 years and die, but to be in Hell, in just (fair) torment, in death forever. However! God sent His Son, Jesus to take the punishment we deserved. Instead of God’s righteous anger and wrath against sin being poured out on us, it was, in full force, directed at Jesus. That’s what the cross is. God’s hatred for sin satisfied. Now, because Jesus took that punishment, those who see their sin for the vile, horrid, thing it is and TURN FROM IT, trusting in that substitution, will not spend eternity in Hell as they, as I, as you, so deserve, but that God could be glorified for His mercy.

 

Do you feel it? Your conscience bothering you? Your heart troubling you? The gospel bomb has gone off. Do not try and resist that power. It isn’t going to harm you; it is going to bring you to life. Call out to God, admit your sinfulness, ask God that the sacrifice of Christ apply to you, the Holy Spirit be working in you and trust that the Lord is faithful to His promise that “everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Joel 2:32, et. al.)

 

If you need to talk about that, Ricardo is here, Lilly is here, I am here. Nothing is more important than where you will spend eternity. That’s why Paul wrote Romans and preached and went on mission trips. That’s why we who are Christian are here.

 

Have you no wish for others to be saved? Then you are not saved yourself. Be sure of that.

— Charles Spurgeon

 

May the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you.

 

Grace be with you.

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One Response to “God Bomb”

  1. Richie Says:

    It was a great class for the kids. Thank you again for that.

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