Today’s message summary of February 10, 2019 from Assistant Pastor Travis Jackson:
Our concept of goodness falls far short of God’s standard. God’s standard of goodness is holiness. If we compare ourselves to Him, we will fail every time.
If you ask the question, “What must I do to be righteous before God?” Is there anything that you can do?
How can a human be justified before God?
How can one born of woman be pure?
There is indeed something wrong with the human race. There is an element of man that is flawed by sin. Sin is the element that has affected everyone throughout creation and even creation itself. All have sinned, and spiritual death has come through Adam, as well. Adam passed on to his descendants a sin nature that all possess at birth. His disobedience created the environment where man plunged into total depravity.
When the Lord saw that human wickedness was widespread on the earth and that every inclination of the human mind was nothing but evil all the time, the Lord regretted that he had made man on the earth, and he was deeply grieved.
All of us have become like something unclean,
and all our righteous acts are like a polluted garment;
all of us wither like a leaf,
and our iniquities carry us away like the wind.
The only person who is deemed as good is Jesus Christ Himself.
Adam and Eve, once they sinned, knew that they needed to hide themselves from God (Genesis 3:8). This is much like how we approach sin today. It is a separation from God.
The answer to all of this is Jesus Christ. He is the remedy for sin. By God sending His son, He is bringing those who were severed from God back to Him.
The genealogy to Christ involves Seth from Adam, who led to Abraham and David. This is the lineage that we need to see as to how we were to be redeemed from our sin.
I will put hostility between you and the woman,
and between your offspring and her offspring.
He will strike your head,
and you will strike his heel.
There are only two types of people in this world. Those who are in Adam and those who are in Christ. Those who are in Adam are sons of disobedience.
Let no one deceive you with empty arguments, for God’s wrath is coming on the disobedient because of these things.
Those who are in Christ are redeemed from sin and disobedience and become sons and daughters of God. These children of God are covered with the blood of Christ in grace and mercy.
What the law could not do since it was weakened by the flesh, God did. He condemned sin in the flesh by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh as a sin offering, in order that the law’s requirement would be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
But since that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for through faith you are all sons of God in Christ Jesus.
We are to look to Christ as the example of obedience to God in its perfection. His example is to teach us how we are to also behave before God.
On the trip, at an overnight campsite, it happened that the Lord confronted him and intended to put him to death. So Zipporah took a flint, cut off her son’s foreskin, threw it at Moses’s feet, and said, “You are a bridegroom of blood to me!” So he let him alone. At that time she said, “You are a bridegroom of blood,” referring to the circumcision.
When the eight days were completed for his circumcision, he was named Jesus—the name given by the angel before he was conceived. And when the days of their purification according to the law of Moses were finished, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (just as it is written in the law of the Lord, Every firstborn male will be dedicated to the Lord) and to offer a sacrifice (according to what is stated in the law of the Lord, a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons).
Jesus was circumcised in order to show obedience to the will of His Father. It was necessary for everyone to see that the law was to be followed, but He came not to judge according to the law but to fulfill it.
He kept the law for the sake of love, and He upheld it in order that we could be justified through faith.
Jesus was tempted as we were in every way. He is the second Adam who fulfilled the law.
Therefore, circumcise your hearts and don’t be stiff-necked any longer.
On the contrary, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly, and circumcision is of the heart—by the Spirit, not the letter. That person’s praise is not from people but from God.
1 Corinthians 15:45
So it is written, The first man Adam became a living being; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit.
“Don’t think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or one stroke of a letter will pass away from the law until all things are accomplished. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commands and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever does and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
If Christ did not obey the law of God (even through circumcision), we could not have been justified by Christ before God.
We all may think that we are good, or even obedient, before God; yet, our level of goodness is insufficient.
1 Samuel 15:22
Then Samuel said:
Does the Lord take pleasure in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the Lord?
Look: to obey is better than sacrifice,
to pay attention is better than the fat of rams.
Our little trinkets that we give to God, for example, money and time of service, are good for our standards, but fall far short of His goodness.
The law in Leviticus 12:1-8 that requires purification at the time of childbirth was an indication of sin itself. Remember that it was because of sin through Eve that women would experience pain during childbirth (Genesis 3:16). The reality of sin is that we are far from clean and holy before God.
1 Timothy 2:13-15
For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and transgressed. But she will be saved through childbearing, if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with good sense.
While he was going, the crowds were nearly crushing him. A woman suffering from bleeding for twelve years, who had spent all she had on doctors and yet could not be healed by any, approached from behind and touched the end of his robe. Instantly her bleeding stopped.
“Who touched me?” Jesus asked.
When they all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the crowds are hemming you in and pressing against you.”
“Someone did touch me,” said Jesus. “I know that power has gone out from me.” When the woman saw that she was discovered, she came trembling and fell down before him. In the presence of all the people, she declared the reason she had touched him and how she was instantly healed.
Note that the woman with a discharge was deemed unclean until that moment when she touched the garments of Jesus, who deemed her clean and healed from her affliction because of her faith.
It is our faith in Jesus Christ that redeems us from our sin through his healing and forgiveness.
As Christ is the firstborn of all creation, we also receive His inheritance.
For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, so that he would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.
He is the image of the invisible God,
the firstborn over all creation.
I hope that I am painting this picture for you is effective in showing that we are to follow Christ in obedience in order that we receive His inheritance, which is eternal life in Him.
When Christ was circumcised, it was the first drop of His divine blood that was shed, and it was done in obedience to Him.
If Christ does not set the example in obedience, we would not see the importance of obedience to Him. We are to be thankful for what Jesus did for us in order that we could experience forgiveness, redemption and a life of obedience before Him.