Temple Baptist Church - 5-31-2015
Matthew 3:1-3; 21:23-46
A. Over the past few weeks, we have been taking a biblical look at one of the greatest men every born of woman, John the Baptist, the fore runner of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1. We looked at John, God’s messenger.
2. We looked at John, the man.
3. This morning, I want to look at The Message.
B. As with any First Mention, God will never change His mind on the subject so the message of Christ MUST never change! In verse 3, we find the two points to the message that John preached:
1. The Way of the Lord.
2. Make His paths straight.
C. In Matthew 21:32, our Lord Jesus indicted the Pharisees with these words: “For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.”
1. The message: “the way of righteousness.”
2. The choice: “Ye believed him not.”
3. The indictment: “when ye had seen it … repented not … that ye might believe.”
D. John the Baptist’s message actually had two points and they were not even alliterated! His message was Repent and Behold! In the First Mention Principle, we find the same message.
Genesis 4:7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him. (1. Repent – “doest well” vs. “doest not well.” 2. Behold – “well” was to bring the right sacrifice which was an atonement that looked forward to the Lamb of God at Calvary.)
E. God’s message preached by John the Baptist was called the “way of righteousness” and it has never changed!
Acts 20:21 Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
1. Repent - Matthew 3:1-2 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, (2) And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. (The argument has raged over the past few decades over repentance.
a. Is repentance necessary for salvation? Yes! Jesus said, in Luke 13:3, “I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” No repentance, no salvation!
b. Is repentance a work? No! Therefore, biblical repentance is not the sinner quitting sin because that would constitute works being necessary for salvation. If repentance was quitting sin, then it would be a good work because it would be something that you did. Salvation is an act of God, not man.
c. What is biblical repentance?
1) Repentance is not quitting anything. Repentance is a change of heart and mind that always results in a changed life. It is a realization of what and who you are coupled with a knowledge of personal helpless in relation to salvation.
2) In Hebrews 6:1, Paul speaks of “repentance from dead works.” A person will never be saved as long as he/she is trying to be saved. Sinners are bankrupt or destitute of personal righteousness for salvation. “Dead works” cannot save!
3) Repentance calls for an acknowledging of the truth. (2 Timothy 2:25)Knowing that the Word of God is right so that hearing can be done in faith.
4) Repentance is also a turning to God for salvation. Acts 20:21 says, “Repentance toward God.” That show a turning from the world to God since they are “polar opposites.” Once again, lest anyone not understand, repentance is not a work but a condition of belief toward God. When a sinner realizes that he/she is a sinner, repentance is a change of direction as they turn to God.
5) The Bible calls true repentance “godly sorrow” not to be repented of. (2 Corinthians 7:10) Once you repent, you will never change your mind! You do not repent, be saved, change your mind and sin, be lost again, repent, and be saved again.
2. Behold - John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
a. One cannot turn to God in repentance until that believe that He is!
1) He is the one and only God! Isaiah 44:6 Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.
2) He is the only Way to heaven. John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
3) His finished work—His death, burial, and bodily resurrection—called the gospel, is full, free, and the final payment for the sin of the world. Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
4) He will eternally save all who come to Him by faith. Romans 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Conclusion: John’s message is the same message that Bible preachers preach today! It not only is the only way to heaven, it is still the only thing that will get you there.