JUDGMENTS OF GOD No. 1—SIN JUDGED AT CALVARY
What was the purpose of Calvary and Christ dying for sin? What was the meaning of Christ’s phrase on the cross, “IT IS FINISHER”? Why did the resurrected Christ, after having paid the debt of mankind’s sin and unbelief, instruct his disciples that whosoever S-I-N-S ye remit (forgive), to them they are remitted (forgiven)? What did Peter mean by declaring baptism in the name of Jesus Christ was for the remission of S-I-N-S (PLURAL)? Are you aware that the Greek language, in order to show the difference between the words S-I-N and S-I-N-S, uses two entirely different words which carries two entirely different definitions and explanations of the English words, sin and sins? And furthermore S-I-N and S-I-N-S are dealt with in two entirely different ways!
Today’s subject deals with the judgments of God and until recently I never realized what this subject would actually unfold itself into. If anyone is in doubt to what the Bible teaches concerning this great plan of salvation and as to why Christ had to die on the cross at Calvary or for what purpose anyone should be baptized in water and why the name of the Lord Jesus Christ is the only biblical way for any true Bible Christian to be baptized, I pray this message will settle these important questions for you once and for all! Our text is taken from St. John 19:29-30 where Christ, while on the cross before giving up the ghost, declared, “IT IS FINISHED!” Of the four gospel writers who mention Christ’s death on the cross, John is the only one to record those impressive words – IT IS FINISHED. So much is wrapped up in that little word FINISHED! What do you suppose Christ meant by using this phrase? What was finished at Calvary?
WHAT WAS FINISHED?
Back in John 17 Christ had previously prayed and declared how he had already given the disciples the Father’s word. True, Christ accomplished and finished the work of his 3 1/2 year ministry, however I am sure when he declared – IT IS FINISHED, he had far more in mind than his 3 1/2 years of ministry. No, He was not speaking in relationship to the message he had delivered, nor the fact his ministry was completed.. This word “FINISHED” carries a far more important significance.
ATTRIBUTES OF SIN NOT JUDGED
Let us ask ourselves an important question—what truly was finished at Calvary when he spoke those words immediately before yielding up the ghost? The thing finished at Calvary was, God had judged our inbred, sinful nature (of unbelief) there in the flesh of Jesus Christ. Yes, at Calvary God judged our inbred sinful nature we had inherited through the fallen Adamic race. It was our fallen, inbred sinful nature, that inherited nature which is truly responsible for all the individual sins committed by the flesh that God judged in the flesh of Jesus Christ.
Does the Bible verify this? Did the apostles teach such a thing? No where do we find where they actually referred to those particular words – IT IS FINISHED, yet nonetheless, studying John’s little epistles as well as Paul’s epistle to the Romans we see both those apostles knew when Christ died on the cross God had definitely finished something.There God had definitely judged something!
BORN WITH SINFUL NATURE
What had he judged? He had judged in the flesh of Christ that old fallen nature that caused each one of us to be sinners! He judged our sin of unbelief. No, God had not judged your individual sins on the basis of how many packs of cigarettes you had smoked or how much beer or liquor you had drunk or how much cursing each had done! No, that is not what God judged in the flesh of Jesus Christ! You say, well, what did he judge—he dealt with my S-I-N question. He judged in the flesh of Jesus Christ my inbred, sinful Adamic nature I was born with which I repeat, is responsible for me being a sinner at birth. We were not born into this world with a cigarette in our mouth or a pack in our pocket. Nor were we born with a bottle of beer or deck of cards in our hands; nor with swearing, committing adultery, cursing, lying, or cheating, etc., but never forget, we were born into this world with something that caused us all to be sinners even at birth and that is, we were born with an inherited, inbred, sinful nature (scripturally called the old man) which could never please God! You were born with this sinful nature that caused you at birth to be a sinner. Remember, smoking, drinking, cursing, adultery, etc., is not S-I-N but instead are the attributes of sin and unbelief.
SINFUL NATURE JUDGED
The age old argument continually goes on daily before God, I haven’t done anything wrong, why do I have to go to church; why should I be baptized, etc.? Beloved, that very attitude is produced because you are a sinner! That attitude is selfish, conceited and self-centered. True, you may have never robbed anyone on the street or held up a gas station or bank or stole anything in your lifetime; you may never have committed adultery, drank liquor, smoked, lied, cheated and done many other of these sins of the flesh, nevertheless, you are still a sinner, you were born a sinner and that is the one thing people refuse to acknowledge before God, that is, I AM A SINNER! It matters not how clean or honest you have lived.
FALLEN NATURE AWAITS OPPORTUNITY TO EXPRESS SELF
People often ask, what must I do to be a sinner? You don’t have to do one thing to be a sinner, you were born a sinner! Why? Because you were born with an inbred, sinful nature that is capable of anything when released. No matter how clean and righteous you try to live as a sinner, God says your righteousness is as filthy rags! Why? Because it is all self-righteousness! You may insist you have never done anything to harm anyone but did you know that self-righteous attitude is merely a cloak to hide or cover over the fact that from birth you are a sinner! You might as well have been in jail as to talk that way!
CONDEMNED TO SAME HELL
Surely a God of love would not condemn me to the same place he would a murderer or someone serving time in a prison? Unless you are born again you are headed for the same pit of fire! No, you may not suffer as much there as someone else because you haven’t done such and such. But merely being a sinner by birth and refusing God’s accepted route for salvation will certainly cause him to judge you and send you to the same place! Did not God judge Adam and Eve because of sin? Did he not tell them the day they ate from the tree of knowledge of good and evil they would surely die? Ever since that dark hour of the beginning of man’s history, every human being, with the exception of Christ. who was born into this world was born a sinner with an inherited, inbred nature to sin–thus producing throughout a lifetime a huge multitude of sins.
NOT BORN COMMITTING SINS
No, little babies aren’t born into the world with beer bottles, cigarettes or decks of cards in their hands; they aren’t born cursing. In a sense that little flesh may be just as clean as clean can be, nevertheless, inside that little vessel of clay is entirely a different story! Inside that tiny body is already an inbred, inherited nature to sin, called the old man or old nature or fallen nature and someday, after that individual begins to grow up and reach the age of knowledge and accountability as to who they are etc., because of that fallen, sinful nature they will absolutely fall under condemnation before Almighty God.
ALL HAVE SINNED
Beloved, there is absolutely no other way to approach God than to come to his provided route. That age old argument, I have always gone to church and tried to do right, absolutely won’t convince God of one thing. None of our excuses will change the word of God, you will still have to come God’s provided route. I have been honest all my life, I have never told a lie–yes you did, you just called God a liar! God said all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. You just told your biggest lie the day you said I have never lied, I have never stole, I have never mistreated anyone. God says, all have sinned! The same man who recorded Jesus’ words, IT IS FINISHED, also declared in I John 1:8, If we say we have no S-I-N (note, John is careful to use the singular word sin and not sins showing this statement is not dealing with sins of the flesh but instead it is that inherited, inbred sin in everyone which is produced by our sinful nature or old man), John says if we say we have no S-I-N, we deceive ourselves. And he also says, by saying this we make God a liar because God said we have all sinned (Rom. 3:23).
BORN A SINNER
What did Paul mean, all have sinned? He simply meant everyone born into this world came into this world with no fault of his or her own, nevertheless was born with a sinful nature to be contrary to God. That is why Paul could declare what he did concerning all sinners’ mouths or throats in Romans 3, how because of that fallen nature each day their mouths are seen by Almighty God as sickening open sepulchre (open tomb), because that fallen Adamic nature on the inside their bosom is sinful, and dead in trespasses and sin (Eph. 2:1). And there will come a day when that fallen, sinful nature will cause that person to do everything contrary to the will of God. Moreover, Paul the apostle to the gentiles, could say even as John said some 30 years later writing to the church, “If we say we have no (inbred) S-I-N” (please note the word sin is singular, not plural showing it has no reference to the S-I-N-S committed by the flesh of the individual). It didn’t say, if we say we have no S-I-N-S, it didn’t say, if we say we haven’t smoked, drank, gambled, committed adultery and such things which are not S-I-N but are the attributes or offspring of S-I-N (unbelief) within us. No, John isn’t speaking of SINS, he is saying if we say we have no inherited S-I-N, which everyone does have, yes even a tiny baby has inherited sin although that baby has never as yet committed S-I-N-S of the flesh–“we deceive ourselves”–and do we ever!! If we say we have no S-I-N we certainly told a big lie! Either we had to make God a liar or ourselves a liar because God had already declared everyone had sinned! God said all have that inherited, Adamic, inbred sinful nature (SIN) just waiting for the opportunity to express itself!
NAILED OLD MAN TO CROSS
Let’s examine those two apostles’ inspiring Holy Ghost writings as they unfold to us the wonderful, glorious plan of God for sinners to be reconciled back unto God. That is, be placed on talking terms where he can have fellowship with God. Christ having paid the SIN debt for everyone has made it easy and acceptable (opening the way) for every person to now come to God. Our old inherited, sinful Adamic nature was nailed (or carried) to the cross in his flesh as he paid the (inbred SIN debt of our sinful nature (Col 2:14), that evil nature which way transferred through the bloodstream from disobedient Adan unto all of us through the act of se) and therefore the only thing God now requires of that sinner is, first, he acknowledge he is a sinner and second, earnestly and sincerely repent of his SIN of unbelief which the Holy Ghost has convicted him of (John 16:8-9). A true servant of Christ will now take the repented convert and baptize them in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of their SINS. (Note, not for their SIN) Water can’t touch SIN! It was the blood of Christ that was shed for the SIN of unbelief!
Acts 2:38 shows you are not being baptized for the remission of SIN (unbelief) but for the remission of your old SINS committed by the flesh which fulfills the very words of Christ the night he presented his great commission unto his chosen disciples saying, whosoever SINS (plural) ye remit, they are remitted. Whosoever SINS ye retain, they are retained–meaning, whosoever SINS ye remit in water baptism through my name – They are remitted.
BAPTISM REMITS SINS
We see Peter ready to carry out that commission in Acts 2:38 the first baptism service after the commission was given as he and others baptized 3000 repenting Jews in water in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of their S- I-N-S, (committed in their flesh). No where from the day God first instituted water baptism through the ministry of John the Baptist in Mark 1:4 was baptism ever for any other purpose than for the remission of S-I-N-S! Mark 1:4 declares John did baptize in the wilderness and preached the baptism of repentance for the remission of S-I-N-S (plural)! Luke recorded the great commission, Luke 24:46-47, after Christ rose from the dead, having already died on the cross for the S-I-N of unbelief, that is taking in his body the penalty and judgment of S-I-N for all, saying, thus it is written and thus it behooved Christ to suffer and to raise from the dead the third day and that repentance and remission of SINS should be preached in his name among all nations beginning at Jerusalem. After having died on the cross and paying the penalty for our inbred sinful nature (not the attributes or offspring of SIN such as drinking, smoking, adultery, etc., which is not SIN itself only the attributes of sin) Christ meets with his disciples after the resurrection, and if I may paraphrase it in these ; words, Christ was saying, alright boys, I have died and paid the debt for the SIN of unbelief (the sinful nature) of every human being, therefore you go forth and preach the gospel and get the people to believe on me, the one who died for their SIN of unbelief. After you have gotten them to believe the gospel, you remit their SINS (of the flesh) in a watery grave in my name that they too, may receive the gift of eternal life.
DID CHRIST REMIT SINS?
Beloved, is that not exactly what Peter and the other disciples did on the day of Pentecost there in Jerusalem where the gospel first began to be proclaimed, Acts 2:38. Someone may say, but Jesus remitted my SINS (plural) of the flesh when he died at Calvary. Then if he did I ask you one question, why did Jesus instruct his disciples to go and make disciples throughout the world and then remit the SINS of those believers (in water baptism) if he had already done all this for them! John 20:23. How else could the apostles forgive anyone’s SINS other than do it scripturally as the apostles were doing in Acts 2:38, Acts 8:11-15, Acts 19:1-5. Would this not really explain what the Apostle Paul meant when presenting his testimony when he in Acts 22:16 speaking of when Ananias approached him at his conversion and after he, as a repentant sinner, had believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, accepting him as the propitiation for his SIN of unbelief, was instructed by faithful Ananias to now arise, go (to the river) and wash away thy SINS, calling on the name of the Lord. Baptism, since the day God instituted it in the wilderness under John the Baptist’s preaching has been for no other purpose than for the remission of SINS, that is, according to the Apostle Paul, the cutting away the body of the SINS of the flesh, Col. 2:11-17.
SINS NOT PLURAL
In a few moments, I want to show you two separate Greek words which are used for the English words SIN AND SINS and show how the Greek definition of these two separate words clearly illustrate how SIN and SINS can by no means be the same thing. (In other words, “SINS” is not the plural of SIN as some might think.) And furthermore show how the blood of Jesus Christ paid our SIN debt of unbelief created by our old Adamic inbred, sinful nature (which we are), while it was ordained of God that water baptism administered in the name of Jesus Christ was, is and always will be for no other purpose than for the remission or forgiveness of the SINS committed by the flesh of each repentant sinner, SINS of the flesh which has been produced by the SIN of unbelief from that inbred, fallen Adamic nature with which we were born, that fallen nature which is easily traced back to the young couple in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve!
BLOOD AND WATER. WHAT PURPOSE DO THEY SERVE?
Never think for a moment that the blood is in the water! NO, water is used strictly for the remission of SINS only. The blood was shed for mankind’s inbred sinful nature of SIN and unbelief. Bear in mind, mankind was not born into the flesh committing SINS of the flesh. No, that came about much later although he was born into the world already a sinner because of a sinful nature which was completely contrary, completely indifferent and completely stubborn toward Almighty God and would in due time produce many SINS of the flesh!
NEW BIRTH REQUIREMENT
Therefore, born in such a condition as this, is there any wonder Jesus told Nicodemus, knowing mankind had all this inbred SIN from birth, that if he ever hoped to see the kingdom of God he would have to be born all over again and this time be born from above and this time be born of the water and of the Spirit in order to get another nature acceptable to God within him, a nature which would please God and would bring him in line with what God demands through his word. In order to do that we must be born again and receive another nature within us!
BORN WITH OLD MAN
Remember, although mankind through the desire of a sex act had been conceived and brought into this world in what appeared to be a seemingly beautiful innocent baby, yet within its bosom was an old carnal, Adamic sinful nature scripturally called the old man awaiting the hour the child was old enough wherein the SIN of the fallen nature or the old man lying there in the bosom of the child could begin to express itself in many forms or attributes of evil referred to as the SINS of the flesh! Yes, although man was a sinner when God prepared a route whereby man could come to him after he had repented of his SIN of unbelief, God wasn’t asking man to bring him a million dollars to be saved. God’s salvation was a free gift to lost mankind. The one thing God had asked everyone to do, was to repent as clearly shown in Acts 2:38, regardless to what kind of sinner you have been in life, whether you have been a mild sinner or a horrible sinner—the point is because of that sinful nature we had in us at birth everyone has sinned and is classified as a sinner. And because of that inherited sinful nature they will never be able to do everything pleasing to God! (See Rom. 3:9-19.)
SINNER AT BIRTH
Seemingly one of the most upsetting things anyone can ever hear in the light of the scripture is for a man of God to point his finger and say, you are a sinner and must repent. In people’s hearts they feel, how can he say that, when I have done nothing bad. That announcement still upsets church going people today as it did even in Christ’s hour among the religious Jews who heard him declare they also needed to repent because they too were sinners (from birth.) People spend a lifetime trying to do good and work out their own plan of salvation, when the very thing God asked them to do—acknowledge themselves as sinners and be sorry for their sins, they simply won’t do! The things they will do to keep from doing the one thing they should is amazing. They will go to church yet they will wonder, why am I supposed to be baptized; I see no sense in that. Show me one reason I should go down in that water! Well, if you were born like Christ–FREE FROM SIN–having never sinned, if you have no SINS of the flesh, to be washed away actually there is no reason you should be, because baptism has always been and always will be for one purpose only, that is for the remission or forgiveness of the many SINS of the flesh!
GOD CONDEMNED MANKIND
You may say, but I have never shot or killed anyone. God never said you had. I have never been drunk in my life, God never said you did! I have never robbed a bank; I have never smoked. God never said you had! And I certainly have never run around with anyone’s wife. God never accused you of that. Then why preacher are you trying to condemn me? I haven’t condemned anyone, God did that himself when he said, “ALL HAVE SINNED AND COME SHORT OF THE GLORY OF GOD!” It was God who said, “THERE IS NONE RIGHTEOUS, NO NOT ONE!” For you to deny that is to say God is a liar and his word is not true, when God is declaring just the opposite! God said let every man be a liar and God be true, all have sinned, there is none righteous no not one! Therefore, when God looked down upon the whole human race of sinners it was he and not man who concluded that all is under sin (singular). It was through the flesh of Adam, through the disobedient act of one life that God condemned all therefore making all of us who were off-spring of Adam to be sinners.
Look at me, I have never done anything bad. Show me anybody I have lied about, never got drunk, never run around, never stole anything, I have always been a good person someone says. What is wrong with that preacher? The nerve of him telling me I must repent or perish. What do I have to repent of? Why is he always trying to make me feel like I am the meanest, orneriest character that ever lived. Beloved, you are pointing your finger at the wrong person, the preacher isn’t making you feel that way, it is God making you feel that way whether you like it or not because as a sinner that is exactly the way God sees you no good, ornery, etc., but it is all because of that fallen Adamic nature inside you you received at birth! Man with his dead sinful inbred nature is a stench in the nostrils of God!
NATURE STINKS BEFORE GOD
If you can’t believe that, how could you ever believe Romans 3 where Paul gives an accurate description as to how God looks upon all sinful mankind with that inbred nature just waiting for the opportunity to express itself. Everyday, God says, their throat or mouth is an open sepulchre. Can you grasp what the Holy Ghost is saying? What a horrible description of stinking, decaying death! What is an open sepulchre other than the fact it is an open tomb which is never closed, a place you put a dead corpse into. It always being open whenever you pass by it continually gives off a terrible, offensive odor of death and decay. That is exactly how God looks upon every soul until the day we sincerely repent out of our hearts toward him! That is the pathetic picture God wants you to see as he looks upon sinners! As God passes by your life as a sinner it resembles an open tomb that someone forgot to cover over and it is continually releasing that horrifying, offensive odor! With that sinful offensive, inbred fallen nature of death and decay you were born with it is this stinking nature of unbelief, death and decay which will do everything contrary to the will of God. Therefore when Christ, hanging on the cross, bowed his head and declared – IT IS FINISHED, it showed God had judged everyone’s SIN question, judged that sinful nature within the sinner’s bosom there in the flesh of Jesus. Remember, he did not judge your individual SINS of the flesh but he judged your SIN of unbelief produced by that sinful nature in your bosom. He did not judge, there in the flesh of Christ, your many packs of cigarettes, your many bottles of booze, your many lies, your cursing, cheating, gambling, adultery, etc., all which are SINS of the flesh produced by that fallen nature. No, he did not judge all these SINS of the flesh in the flesh of Jesus Christ. That was not the purpose of Calvary!
TWO GREEK WORDS AND THEIR MEANING 1-HAMARTIA-SIN
Perhaps we can better understand this subject of SIN and SINS a little clearer by examining two Greek words. The Greek uses two entirely different words for SIN and SINS and between the two distinct Greek words for SIN and SINS lies a vast difference of meaning! It is a distinction and difference placed there strictly by the Holy Spirit himself! The word SIN in the Greek is Hamartia and its Greek meaning is “a principle or source of action” or shall we say, it is an inward element, producing acts. Hence SIN is the evil principle; SIN is generic or inherited. It indicates the spring of all forms and phases and movements of SIN, whether entertained in thought or consummated in act.
However, watch closely, the word SINS (of the flesh) is taken from another Greek word, HAMARTEMA, and shows that SINS is by no means the plural of SIN. HAMARTEMA (SINS) means actual transgression. It is the output of the evil principle or it is the product of the evil principle and the offspring of the original. It simply means the committing of sinful actions and sinful deeds. Summing up the difference between the two Greek words let us say, SIN (which Jesus died for) is the disobedient sinful nature, full of unbelief, death and decay which is inherited from birth in the soul of man and remember, this is what the blood of Jesus Christ was shed for. While the SINS of the (flesh) person are those individual deeds of disobedience committed by the fallen depraved nature of the soul of fallen mankind. Concerning all these SINS of the flesh, remember Jesus instructed his disciples how to take care of them when he said, whosoever SINS ye remit (forgive) they are remitted unto them, John 20:23, Acts 2:38!
CONTRAST BETWEEN HAMARTIA AND HAMARTEMA
The contrast of the two Greek words Hamartia (SIN) and Hamartema (SINS) may be further explored in this manner, SIN is character; SINS are conduct. SIN is the center; SINS is the circumference. SIN is the source of which SINS is the secretion. SIN is the root; SINS is the fruit. SIN is the producer while SINS is the product. SIN is the old nature itself; SINS is the manifestation of the old nature. SIN is the sire; SINS, his offspring. SIN IS ONE SINGLE ACT; SINS, MANY SINFUL ACTS. SIN is what we are; SINS is what we have done. SIN is the fountain; SINS is its flow. SIN entered the world through one disobedient act of one man, Adam, Rom. 5:12 and spread death and decay throughout the entire human race. SIN put Jesus to death for all in order to pay this sin debt. He who knew no SIN (or had no sinful inherited nature to produce and SINS of the flesh) was made SIN for us, 2 Cor. 5:21. Through his death he bore the sentence of death which SIN had brought upon the human race. SIN was dealt with at its very source when Christ died.
LAW UNABLE TO ASSIST NATURE
Turn with me to Rom. 8:3 where Paul clearly shows how nothing other than the death of the cross could possibly help that sinful, depraved nature of man as we hear him declare, for what the law or commandments could not do in that it (mankind’s sinful flesh) was weak… Christ accomplished for us in his death. The law in itself was not weak, the law was righteous, holy. It simply didn’t have any good material to work with. What, I ask you, did the law say to the hearer? Through the Ten Commandments the law continually said this one thing—THOU SHALT NOT, THOU SHALT NOT, THOU SHALT NOT! But remember, the righteous law was addressing a people who possessed from birth a sinful, wicked nature to continually go contrary to the desire of God. Therefore, the holy, righteous law in itself could do nothing to regulate or control the actual lustful desires of that wicked sinful nature within mankind’s flesh. For example, there was nothing in the law to help man’s depraved, fallen nature whereby he would not want to covet. The sinful nature of mankind itself continually desired to sin. Man’s entire problem lay deep within himself and it was all because he possessed within himself that sinful, inherited, inbred nature of unbelief, death and decay transferred into his bloodstream from the Garden.
LAW MAINTAINS SOME CONTROL OF NATURE
Regardless to what the law demanded from the flesh and although it did maintain some regulations or control upon that sinful nature of man from going totally wild or becoming com-pletely out of control, nevertheless that sinful nature within man, even though the law continually said thou shalt not, that nature would always break through and do things contrary to what the law had declared even though the penalty of the law was constantly kept before him! Thus, in all the mandatory aspects of the law over all the people it ruled, Jewish man, woman or gentile proselyte, with all of its THOU SHALT NOTS, there simply was nothing (no provision) within the law itself that could offer hope or possibly change the raging or craving of that depraved sinful nature to sin!
LAW NOT WEAK
There was no weakness within the law! The weakness lies within man lays within his sinful depraved nature and in his inability to keep the law. Since he was born wrong he simply was incapable of living up to God’s pure and holy law. Paul worded it this way, the law is righteous or spiritual but the problem is we being carnal were sold under sin (Rom. 7:14) which simply means we have been trapped by our own inbred, sinful nature which is always desiring to express itself in some evil form. Carnal and sold under sin (unbelief) simply means we were bound to begin with, we were enslaved all because we were born with a sinful, inbred nature such as this! Therefore God gave Israel the law in order to show them where all the cause of man’s problems lay. It explained why we do the sinful things we do—it is all because of the sin of unbelief. It is all because of the nature we were born with and the law pointed all this out! While it is true some people seem to be born with a nature more filthy than others, nevertheless (every nature) is all sin! Paul asked the question, Rom. 7:7 could anyone say the law was sin? Certainly not, Paul says. I would not have known what lust was had it not been for the law which said, “THOU SHALT NOT COVET!”
CHRIST CONDEMNED SIN
Continuing on in Rom. 8:3 Paul says, for what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh. meaning our flesh, ruled over by our sinful nature; simply was too weak, too sinful, too depraved to actually keep the law, God, sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for S-I-N (note, not for S-I-N-S, keep your eye on that singular term SIN which always speaks of the inward nature)— God condemned SIN in the flesh, or shall we say God pronounced judgment on SIN! He signed the death warrant of SIN in our nature through the flesh of Christ! Hallelujah!, what the law could not do (or accomplish) because we were so weak, seeing we carried this depraved sinful Adamic nature which controlled or ruled us God, sending forth his Son in the likeness of (our) sinful flesh condemned SIN in the flesh—serving a death warrant on SIN!!
Remember our many, many SINS or fleshly acts are merely the product or the offspring of SIN all because we possess that sinful nature, whereas the singular SIN of myself is that sinful, inherited depraved nature which I was born with and for which Christ died. When the Bible declares without the shedding of blood there is no remission of SINS, here again it is still speaking strictly of the singular (act or inbred nature) SIN of many or a plurality of people which would naturally make it read SINS. For remember Christ never died for the SIN of Raymond Jackson alone. No, Christ died for the SINS of the entire world! He died for the sin of every human being who was born with a wicked nature to sin and do wrong. Wording it in that fashion naturally places SIN in a collective or plurality term (SINS).
LAW REVEALED LUST
Back to Rom. 8:3. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh–it was our flesh and not the law which was weak because God doesn’t have such a thing as a weak law! His law is holy, righteous and just—God, sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for SIN (or because of the nature of SIN) condemned SIN (singular) in the flesh. Note, Christ did not condemn the individual’s SINS, it was only his SIN! Already he had ordained something else to take care of the remission of SINS in the flesh (Acts 2:38). God is holy, just and righteous and was the very author of that law. I repeat, that law was a righteous law but man, being carnal and sold under sin having within his bosom that sinful depraved nature simply couldn’t obey a holy law! I repeat, that perfect law was to actually show to Israel and gentile proselytes as well where the root of all man’s problem and trouble lay, that is where SIN truly lay—in the nature of the person! Rom. 7:7-8 shows how sin or lust lay within the inbred nature of man and furthermore, sin actually gained its strength from the law (Rom. 7:7-10). The righteousness of the law brought all this out. The righteousness of the law meaning all the law actually foreshadowed might be fulfilled in us who walk not after the flesh but after the spirit, Rom. 8:4.
LUSTING OF INWARD NATURE
What causes a man (a woman) to lust for tobacco or strong drink and such things? Is it simply because somewhere earlier in life someone tempted them to smoke, drink, or something else. If it was the temptation to smoke, probably at first after taking a few puffs the individual began to cough, gag, and sneeze and no doubt become sick. Nevertheless, there was something inside the person making him or her desire to be like everyone else, here they go at it! No, at first it was never their intentions to become a chain smoker, a problem drinker, gambler, thief, or anything else. Did they become a smoker, drinker, etc., simply because there was actually such a good taste to what he or she was doing? Probably not! It was done mainly because deep down inside the individual was an evil, depraved nature with an inner craving which wanted the individual to be like all other sinful boys and girls and do what all others were doing. God says all have sinned! Everyone was born with a nature to do everything contrary to the will of God!
EVIL NATURE EXPRESSES ITSELF
I am only using tobacco as an illustration. None of these things which we actually get into at first are gotten into because there is at first such a marvelous taste or appetite for it. No, it is simply because there is a depraved nature inbred within us that desires to reach out and express itself and that sinful, inbred nature causes us to want to be like everybody else, to be identified with the same old crowd, etc. Therefore, sooner or later in the young person’s life, whether male or female, that evil, depraved nature begins to reach out and do evil things seeing it must cultivate itself through various things. It can apply first to cigarettes, then go to beer. From beer it can go to liquor; from liquor to drugs, robbing banks, adultery, cheating, lying, stealing—yes, and even to murder! Just as far as you allow that sinful nature to reach out, that is exactly how far sins in some form or other can be manifested in what is termed the lust of the flesh or the lust of an old fallen nature!
HOW SIN BEGAN
How did SIN actually begin? How did it get into the world? Who was responsible for releasing such a horrible thing or bringing it into the earth? We know according to scripture SIN or disobedience was not in the original setting of the Garden of Eden, therefore, how did it get in! Rom. 5:12 declares it was by and through the disobedience of one man (not one woman) called Adam that many were made sinners (made sinners in Adam). Note, God was not required to wait until each little baby was born into the world before deciding whether or not it would be a sinner. No sir! The day Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden they became the propagators of every human being who would ever be born on the face of this planet. And because they sinned, because they disobeyed God, because of their one disobedient act, their offending God this one time, it brought in a condemnation that reached unto all mankind.
God judged that one disobedient act and when he declared thou shall surely die, the judgment against the young couple carried a two-fold meaning. First they would die spiritually in losing that close communion fellowship and relationship with God. Also that one disobedient act of sin would carry with it a physical penalty of death also. No, at that hour God could not kill them. Had God killed them immediately he would have destroyed his very means and route by which he had chosen to bring other human life into the world therefore he permitted them almost a thousand years before allowing death to take them. In that process of time many children were born, Gen. 5:4 declares Adam and Eve begat a number of sons and daughters. See, because one set of parents sinned, all offspring were made sinners.
ADAM’S SIN NOT INHERITED
Are you aware their sin, their original sin, unlike ours, was by no means an inherited sin! No, it was the original act of disobedience–disbelieving God’s word. Therefore it became an act of offense! By offending God they became guilty of sin and death. And when SIN was finished it brought forth death, James 1:14-15. Therefore because of Adam, lust (desire), sin and death has continually reigned in mankind’s bloodstream throughout the ages. Every child since that hour, born into this earth is born with that inbred, Adamic sinful nature or attribute to be a sinner and never to be righteous! Because of their sin and because of what mankind has inherited from that first young couple as parents, no parent can possibly give birth to a child filled with eternal life. If they could you would have people walking around on earth today who would never have to die. However, because everyone does eventually die shows death comes because that individual is a sinner and death is the final penalty of SIN
SIN AND DEATH IN PARTNERSHIP
Are you aware SIN and death go together? Because of sin death is that infallible Penalty. Because all are born with sin we hear the scripture declare in Heb 9: 27, it is appointed unto a man met to die and alter that – whether he be saint or sinner, righteous or unrighteous, after death ceases the Judgment! What judgement is this? Does man’s sin somewhere again have to be Judged in the person of Jesus Christ? Certainly not! Christ Jesus suffered and died condemning sin in his flesh once and for all, for everyone past, present, and future. Through the flesh of Jews Christ, God condemned sin. God condemned and judged and paid the penalty and debt for that sinful nature with which we were born. Later we will see what this judgment is for.
CREATED WITH PERFECT NATURE
Man (woman as well) in his first estate as he was originally created by Almighty God both his and her nature was absolutely created perfect, righteous, holy, clean, and totally uncondemned: Since in the beginning they had within them no sin, that is no sinful nature whatsoever, there was no death dwelling in them, only eternal life. This young couple, not only had an eternal promise, they furthermore are the only two who ever had an option to choose between right and wrong! They had a choice no one else has ever had, because it was only unto them God said, the day thou eateth of the tree thou shall surely die! And we are fully aware they did eat and they did die and as a result of what they did and because of the purpose or reason they did what they did, they no longer carried within them a righteous, clean, pure, holy nature but having tasted of the forbidden fruit in the manner and for the purpose they did cause them and all their offspring of humanity to fall under guilt and condemnation to have within them a sinful depraved, guilty human nature that could only be satisfied through some act of carnality: Therefore, we note the original sin was by no means an inherited thing, instead it became an imputed thing all because of this one act of disobedience on their part.
ONE DISOBEDIENT ACT MAKES ALL GUILTY
Rom. 4:19 declares, for as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners. Moreover, the scripture declares in Rom 5:14 that death also reigned or held sway from Adam to Moses, even during that period of time when there was no law. Nevertheless, death still held sway over all those. Paul said, who had not sinned after the similitude or likeness of Adam! Remember beloved, Adam sinned willfully after having received a direct commandment from God. He was fully aware of the penalty that must be paid if be disobeyed yet willingly he disobeyed and therefore death which is the final penalty of the flesh, because of the individual being an inherited sinner by nature (even from Adam to Moses) death still reigned over each person, even though none of these people had sinned by the same act as had Adam or shall we say, they had not had the same choice of disobedience as Adam who originally sinned. No, the others had no choice as did Adam whether they would sin or not, obey Ged Or disobey God, they were born sinners! Therefore it goes to show God looked upon the human race, knowing he had ordained this one man and woman to be the propagators of human life and that within every creature the God of heaven who is a God of laws, set forth within mankind a law of heredity. Are you aware that in the flesh of people are good qualities of heredity and it is these good qualities of heredity which causes a person to make wise choices and knowing how in a sense to do the right thing; However none of these qualities will make anyone a saint. Are you aware also through the genetic law of the flesh of the parents that they pass on these same qualities through the hereditary law unto their offspring yet It Is possible some of these things will not even show up in their children but will show up on down the line somewhere else In future generations! Passed on to the children of each generation Is also that Inheriting, depraved, evil, disobedient, Adamic nature of being a sinner, and death sooner or later follows!
MERELY A SUBSTITUTE
Yes, because of Adam’s offense all were made sinners, made sinners in Adam right then even before natural birth because, keep In mind, God doesn’t wait till the child is born to determine whether or not it is a sinner. Everyone is a sinner the minute they are born because they were conceived in and shaped in iniquity, therefore the child is born with a nature to be a sinner. This route of birth, beginning outside the garden, continued for ages upon ages and every sacrifice man, either by revelation or by his own intuition had ever offered prior to Calvary, that sacrifice was merely a substitute for sin waiting for that hour, when, through the obedience of one man who would be born innocent, born perfect, born sinless, and born full of eternal would come.
PERFECTION FACES DEATH
This one man will take the place of every sinful man and by substituting himself to death will take the sinful depraved nature of every person who has ever been or would be born and there bear their individual, sinful nature of sin upon the shoulders of his own flesh and he who absolutely was not afraid to die or face death, seeing he was very life himself, walked up Calvary’s hill, stared death in the face, defied the devil and declared no man takes my life, I lay it down! No. Christ didn’t die of heart trouble, cancer, TB, or any other disease, he died by a murderer’s weapon! He who was righteous was condemned by a Jewish court to die. He was eternal life, there was no guile found in him, he was guiltless. Yet he was brought into the world through a virgin birth, taking upon himself the likeness (similitude) of sinful flesh.
DEATH OF AGONY
Remember… he took upon himself only the likeness of man who is a sinful natured person. And because of the sin that man in general is born with, Christ would bear that sinful nature of every mortal creature taking it all upon his flesh. God, the eternal Spirit, who was in Christ the flesh man, cannot sin and has never sinned. Nevertheless, through his own flesh he bore that sinful nature of mankind and there as he laid down upon that cross and as they drove nails through his hands and feet, lifting him up on the cross to hang there for hours humiliated, despised, spit upon, rejected, he was left there to suffer and die like any natural man would! Yes, as he hung there for hours nerves were pulled and strained as that body felt death. The cross was one of the most cruel, tormenting means of death known to mankind. To be hung there in that fashion and left to die was torture and a period of time filled with agony. You may consider being shot before a firing squad as a terrible way to die. That death is almost instant; to be gassed is almost instant; to be beheaded is practically instant death; to be shot through the heart is almost instant death; but beloved to hang on a cross with nails driven through your hands and feet when it could take quite a period of time to die, that would be treacherous! Many people have been shot through the hands but didn’t die. People have had both legs blown off but didn’t die.
CAUSE OF DEATH
What caused Christ to die? It was the fact of hanging there for hours with all that continuous weight of his fleshly body pulling down. That body was absolutely racked through and through with the most undescribable incredible torture and painful situation. Why? Because that great heavenly creator had ordained that the flesh of this man who is Christ the Son should die like a man. Innocent, guiltless, and a righteous life was represented there. Flesh of man was also represented there and you and I, that is our sinful, Adamic nature, full of death and decay, was also represented in the flesh of Jesus Christ while God himself who is holy and just was also represented in the life of Jesus there on the cross!
SIN RECEIVED DEATH BLOW
Moreover this fulfills Paul’s revelation I Tim. 3:16 concerning how great is the mystery of godliness; how the God of heaven creator of all things and the Father of all life was in Christ, the fountain of life to give life to that flesh as he reconciled the world back to himself through what, the flesh of Jesus Christ his only begotten Son. Yes, when Christ said it is finished, truly a great deal was finished. Sin had received a lick it would never recover from. It shows how the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled, satisfied and fully met in us who now walk not after the flesh, that is walking after the desires of the lower nature, but walk after the spirit (Rom. 8:4).
WAY TO BE MADE RIGHTEOUS
Rom. 5:19 has declared that as by the one disobedient act of one person (Adam) many were made sinners, likewise it has also been through the obedience of one person who is that man Christ, many shall be made righteous! How, I ask you, how can man be made righteous? Would man be made righteous now since Christ died for sin because he simply decides to turn over a new leaf? Would it be that man could become righteous because they have decided to begin to go to church? Could it be that many will be made righteous because they decide to shake the preacher’s hand and unite with the church of their choice? The answer to every one of these questions is, absolutely not! Yet we are aware that these are the very routes that many within the world try to become righteous! How then may many become righteous? Rom. 5:19 declares, through the obedient act of one man many were made righteous. There is absolutely no other way!
RESTORED THROUGH OBEDIENCE
Did we not get into this terrible predicament of possessing an evil sinful, depraved nature, of becoming a sinner through the disobedience of one man? Why then may we not be made righteous by the obedient act of one man? How will we be made righteous? First of all that individual person, whoever they may be in order to be made righteous must realize and recognize as Paul declared in Romans 3 that all have sinned. We have sinned because we were born with an evil nature to sin. Again you may say, I have never killed anyone; never drank liquor, robbed banks or run around with anyone else’s wife or husband. And again, I say beloved, God never said you had!! Then why preacher would you want to condemn me? I haven’t condemned you, God did! God is the one who said all have sinned and there is not one righteous, no not one!
Therefore when God looked down upon the whole human race, it was God and not man himself who concluded that all were under SIN (singular!) Through the flesh of Adam, through this one disobedient act of this one life God condemned all, thus, were we all made sinners. See, we had nothing personally to do with it. This statement fulfills Paul’s revelation in Rom. 8:20 where he again declares that the creature was made subject to vanity, that is (made subject to decay or imperfection), not willingly (not by reason of his own choice) not by some deliberate fault of his own personally, no! But by reason of him who has subjected the same in hope (or unto this hope).
What was this hope? That in the end the whole of created life will be rescued from this bondage, this corruption, this decay, this slavery of death and brought into the glorious image of the children of God. Yes beloved that is our hope. See, not one of us had a thing to do with being here! Who can say they wanted to be born on a certain day or year? Or they wanted to be born of certain parents? Not one of us!! Thus behind the scene somebody must have maneuvered the arrangement. God did! Then why can’t we simply accept what Paul says that the creature who I am, that’s me—There is no need for me to ask myself, who am I? What am I doing here? Or any of these other ridiculous questions asked by this missing generation gap today, such as, I am trying to find myself. You never will! The only place you will ever find yourself is in Jesus Christ. If you don’t the day will come when you will wake up in I hell! Therefore, why not wake up now and realize you are here on this planet, some 25,000 miles around. No you are not a myth, you are real and if you don’t believe it start walking around the planet. Before you could possibly get back you will be old and ready for the grave! I am talking like this only to help us realize when Jesus on the cross said it is finished truly there was more finished than what met the eye! An innocent man had died because everyone else was a sinner. God had condemned everyone to death and somewhere an innocent one had to come along who had the power to undo what the first man Adam forfeited, undo what the one man Adam sold out to and in return brought sin and condemnation upon all the human race. Yes, another man who was righteous and free of all this condemnation had to come and pay the sin debt of this sinful human nature! Why? That he might reconcile us back to God, that great eternal heavenly creator, praise his wonderful name!
Thus if we are able to see how it was our sinful nature that was judged in the flesh of Christ, we are now ready to examine something else in I John 1:8. Although it has already been touched up on, let’s look into it further. John says if we say we have no (inherited) SIN we deceive ourselves. Note, God isn’t the one deceiving himself! Oh no, he knows beyond any shadow of doubt we are all sinners. He doesn’t have to daily remind himself, I wonder if I am right and they are wrong?. No, John says with an attitude like this, if we don’t think we have any (inherited) sin we deceive yourself and the truth is certainly not in us. In plain English, we lied! Notice, but if we confess our SINS … John now places the word SIN in the plural. WHY? Because “we” speaks of a plurality of people, yet he is still dealing with the sin of an individual sinful nature. What are we to do? We must confess to God our sinful nature. Henceforth John says, if we (showing plurality thus if we is plural then our many natures also are plural, are they not?) if we, (the people), confess our SINS he is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness through his shed blood. Righteousness does not begin with you giving up cigarettes, giving up drinking, lying, gambling, etc. No, righteousness does not begin with giving up certain attributes of the sinful nature expressed through the flesh.
But someone says, Bro. Jackson, I have been trying to get saved for the past 15 years, I tried and tried but I can’t succeed. Well, you just didn’t go at it right. But someone told me if I would give up smoking or give up this or that (whatever it might be) I could get saved but I can’t seem to make it. Beloved, that is not what this Bible says, that is what confused man has said! The Bible said if we confess our sins we can be forgiven! Well, that is what I was trying to do, confess that I smoked. Neighbor, God already knows that. He knew that before you did! What God wants you to do is to recognize that within you there is a nature that is sinful, corrupt and filled with evil! That is what he is after; that is what he wants to work on. He wants to change that nature within you. If he can only get hold of that old guilty sinful, inherited, Adamic nature of yours and you are willing to allow him work on it, I guarantee you when he does his work on your nature, he will have done it once and for all! That is when we receive within us his new nature. He will take away that old taste, that old crave you have cultivated over the past years of liking certain things and he will give you a new taste, a new desire whereby you can say with Paul, if any man be in Christ he will be a new creature (has a new nature), old things of the old nature have passed away and behold all things have become new (2 Cor. 5:17).
DESIRES TO CHANGE NATURE
But preacher, I have been told I have to stop this or that! Beloved, it was the law which always said, thou shalt not, but the gospel of grace did not say that! The gospel said if we confess and confess is admitting unto the Lord you are a sinner who needs his help. Lord you know my sinful nature, please change it. Beloved, that is what I had to do, I had to have placed within me his new nature. For instance, cigarettes were my problem (I don’t know your problem) I tried to be a good I fellow, to slip around and smoke because I didn’t want my wife to know I smoked–the point I am trying to make is how self-righteous we try to be. Oh, how we try to pretend by slipping around, we are like an ostrich sticking his head under the sand, thinking he won’t be seen when all the time God is looking at us! Poor little ostrich, got his head under the sand, thinks nobody sees him while the rest of his huge body is sticking out in plain view! ! – that is the way people are in their self-righteous ways, trying to hide what they are doing! We are not hid!
DEALING WITH SINFUL NATURE
It is only when we sincerely confess, O Lord, I am a sinner and God within me is this terrible sinful nature. Lord, please take over this old nature and do something with it. If you are sincere and truly willing to allow God to work on that nature which he has already judged at Calvary, that old nature which causes you to think and causes you to act and do the way you do, when you first truly repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as the scripture has said, it will be then he can absolutely begin to take that old vile sinful nature you were born with and change it by placing his own holy, righteous nature into you and as his nature begins to move in, to clean up your heart it will be then that you will be able to take that pack of cigarettes, bottle of beer, deck of cards, liquor bottle, and throw them away! However, if he doesn’t move in and take hold of that old appetite, that old craving which is produced only by the old sinful nature, it won’t work!
DESTROYING CRAVE AND DESIRE
Beloved, with Christ in you, your hope of glory, with his new nature in you, that is when he takes over the craving for that thing whatever it may be, people may be all around you doing certain things but it won’t even be a temptation anymore because inside you something has already happened! If we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned (placing it in the past tense) in other words, if we say we have done nothing wrong simply because we don’t smoke, drink, gamble, or murder or haven’t done certain of these other things. That is like looking upon an apple tree saying, well I don’t see any rotten apples. If we say we have not sinned we make him a liar and his word is not in us. Because the problem doesn’t start with all these outward things, it all begins with that inward sinful, inherited, Adamic nature desiring to express itself, not with a lot of rotten apples hanging on the outside of the tree. It all begins with an inward sinful nature. Therefore in the flesh of Jesus Christ God judged our inward sinful nature, Praise his wonderful name!
PART 2—JUDGMENT OF CHRIST JUDGMENT FOLLOWS DEATH
If we can accept that it was our sinful Adamic nature itself that was judged at Calvary there in the flesh of Jesus Christ and not the many outward attributes of sin, then from this point on I went to ask another question, if the bible declares Heb. 9:27 that after death there will be a judgement for everyone, why then are we as Christians to be judged again? O, but Bro. Jackson, I didn’t know we were to be judged again! The scripture says we are! Well, what is this judgement for, why am I to be judged again? Has not both my SIN and SINS question already been taken care of? I thought I already had eternal life, someone says, I thought I was already now a child of God. You just finished telling me my personal sin of unbelief was judged in Jesus Christ and that he suffered, bled and died once and for all. Beloved, if you are saved and born again you are a child of God; Then why must I be judged again, someone says? I will answer that in this fashion–the judgment the Christian must face after death is not a judgement to determine whether or not you are saved or lost because if you were ever truly saved scripturally by being born again as the Bible declares and as we taught in our message on THE NEW BIRTH (VOL. 8, No. 2,) you are saved and born again and that is once and for all! I simply can’t understand this message, it is too deep for me. Well, had you rather we spend about five minutes discussing what happened at some Sunday School picnic, weiner roast, or attending some marshmallow roast somewhere? If we are going to do that be sure to take a good sharp pocket knife because in roasting weiners or marshmallows you will need to cut yourself a good sassafras stick! Everyone knows how to do that and besides there isn’t any salvation in those things. We aren’t here to go to Sunday School weiner roasts or such things, we are here to find our place in this life as well as what we are doing with this life. Are we interested enough in this life that we hope and pray it has some future in it for us? Yes, as a true believer after death comes the judgment and we shall be judged again.
EVERYONE FALLS UNDER A JUDGMENT
Including the judgment of sin at Calvary there are four judgments mentioned in the scriptures and we want to discuss each one of them placing each in their proper setting as well as see the purpose for each judgment. Someone might say, are you teaching a sinner will get a second chance? Absolutely not! There is no such thing as a purgatory, that is manmade! The Bible teaches it is appointed unto a man once to die and after that comes the judgement. Why does man die? He dies because he was born a sinner and death is the penalty for having been born a sinner. Furthermore, the Bible declares after death comes the judgement. Remember, judgement here covers everyone, both saint and sinner, although the judgments are not the same nor held at the same time or same place. Nevertheless, everyone after death, will face the Lord Jesus at their particular judgment. Everyone, past, present, and future, whether a believer or unbeliever somewhere after death will all fall under a judgment. That particular judgment will bring out of the individual certain things that will be reflected back at a time a finished work is done at Calvary.
JUDGE NOT BROTHER
For an in depth study on the purposes of the Christian judgment after death let us begin by examining Romans 14 where PAUL is seen laying down a good foundation upon which all believers may stand. Chapter 14 opens with him discussing how believing Christians are guilty of condemning or passing judgment upon one another and the entire essence of his discussion stems around the fact of what he had been discussing in the previous chapter, how one believed he could eat meat and another believed it was wrong and from that they simply went from bad to worse especially in their condemnation of each other! In other words, they had gone to seed on certain little things and this in turn was bringing about much friction among the believers. In Rom. 14:8 Paul is using an illustration showing how no believer has a right to condemn or judge another believer seeing both of them belong to the Lord, as he says for whether we (Christians) live, we live unto the Lord and whether we (Christians) die, we die unto the Lord. Therefore whether we live or die we are the Lord’s. God created you but it depends on how you have lived as to which judgment after death you will stand before. For to this end, Paul says, Christ both died and rose and revived that he might be Lord of everybody, both the dead and the living. The dead mentioned here is the unbelieving dead, the living are those believing saints who recognizes and accepts the atonement for their sinful nature as having been in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Paul says Christ did all this in order to be the master of all therefore stop judging another Christian! That person is the Lord’s servant, not yours! Christ is going to be the master who will judge the works of the living saints as well as be the Lord who will also judge the works of the unbelieving dead at his great white throne judgement, Rev. 20:11-15. Remember the unbelieving is always referred to as the dead, dead spiritually as well as naturally.
CHRIST WARNING OF JUDGING
Paul now comes straight to the point and conveys the real essence and purpose for which he is writing this letter. It is because of the way these Christians are acting, the way they are condemning or judging each other in what they will allow or won’t allow. Recall, it was in Christ’s sermon on the mount he told his disciples, judge not lest ye be judged, Matt. 7:1-2. Here Paul asks the question, Why doest thou judge thy (believing) brother? Brother here does not refer to brothers in the flesh, no, he is speaking of brothers in the faith, in the congregation. First off, what makes these believers brothers? What makes you a brother? Is it not the fact you both have been begotten through the same blood and the same seed word of promise of the Lord Jesus Christ? Up until the hour of being begotten by the word of truth, you as well as the other person were a sinner and you had to come to God’s provided route. Being born again this time, not by a corruptible seed which spoke of the natural birth as well as the human genetic line and the sinful nature but instead by that incorruptible seed which is the word of God. And note the first thing that word of God told you was to acknowledge that you were a sinner. Repent, be sorry says the word (Acts 2:38). And do what, be sprinkled? NO! Be baptized, be covered over in water. Be placed in that watery grave in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. For what purpose? For the remission of your sins, not for the forgiveness of your inbred sinful nature, NOT THAT SIN! No, the blood of Christ took care of the inbred, sinful nature. Remember, you cannot mix the blood which was shed for SIN with the water which is for the remission of SINS and declare that both the blood and water does the same thing, THEY DO NOT! The blood was shed for the remission of SINS and when the scripture says sins here remember, it is referring to the sins of the entire world, speaking strictly of the sin of that individual evil nature everyone was born with and not the attributes of the sinful nature called the SINS of the flesh.
Without the shedding of that blood there is no remission of sins, there is no remission for that nature, no forgiveness and hence no one could ever be made righteous!
CONDEMNING CHRIST’S SERVANT
Now that you are brothers, having come the same route, why, Paul says, do you judge your brother or why do you set at naught your brother? Meaning why do you feel you are better than your brother simply because you don’t do this or that? Why do you look down on your brother? After all, Christ died for both you and your brother! O but I don’t eat meat, I don’t do this or that was the reply. According to Paul’s gospel the eating of meat or not eating it or the keeping of days or not keeping days did not make one righteous or unrighteous. Such things pertain strictly to the law which God has only used as types and shadows pointing to the age of grace when the gospel would go to the gentiles. Now why Paul says, doest thou judge thy brother, why doest thou set at naught thy brother for we (believers not the world) shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. Remember, this judgement seat of Christ is not Calvary. If this judgment seat is not Calvary then what is it? It is strictly where you and I as Bible believers will one day stand before him after this life is over, stand before him who begot us unto God who through the offering of himself once and for all sanctified us that we might become sons and daughters unto the living God, unto a lively hope, unto a better way, that we might be made the righteousness of God. Now if we are to be made the righteousness of God then one day at the first resurrection when he calls for the saints, first their bodies from the ground and second change the bodies of the living saints there in a moment in a twinkling of an eye in order to fulfill John’s word where he said we know not what we shall be like but we know that when he shall appear we shall be like him for we shall see him as he is. For as he is so shall we be! That is all typified in the parable of Matt. 25:14-30 where Jesus speaks of the one who had been very faithful with his five talents therefore to him was given such and such and to another who had also used his two talents so faithfully, to that class of people was also given such and such. Yes, we are all destined to stand before the judgment seat of Christ to give an account as it is written in the scriptures, as I live saith the Lord, every knee shall bow before me and every tongue shall confess to God. Each one of us is going to give an account of our faithfulness before God. This is clearly an established fact, there will be a judgment seat of Christ and believers are the ones who stand there! Paul did not say the world will stand there, No, he said we would stand there! Paul places himself in the family of God along with the assembly of saints when he says we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ to give an account,
“Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.” 2 Cor. 5:9-11
WARNING CONCERNING BUILDING MATERIAL
Turn now to I Cor. 3:9 for a deeper look at a certain aspect of this judgment because here again we see the Apostle Paul speaking, using the term “we” again. This time he has reference to the ministry as he says we are laborers together. Ye are God’s husbandmen (speaking concerning the assembly of saints), Ye are God’s building (still making reference to the collective body of believers) according to the grace of God which is given unto me as a wise master builder, I have laid the foundation (for the gentile church) —The foundation spoken of here by Paul could be none other than the revelation of the scriptures hidden even from the prophets of old there in the Old Testament as well as the revelation of the spirit God had quickened and given unto him in that apostolic office, that is he laid the foundation of the faith upon what the repenting gentiles should believe and accept in respect to that of receiving eternal life, according to the grace of God which is given unto me as a wise master builder, I have laid the foundation and another buildeth thereupon. But let every man take heed, be careful how he buildeth thereon. My what a warning! Building God a house, building a vineyard for God. Notice now what he is about to tie all this into—for no other foundation can any man lay than that which is already laid which is the revelation of Christ Jesus. Everything has to be centered around him. Jesus was God’s redemptive name on earth revealing to the world that through that name of Jesus he would save his people from their sins, God ordained that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bend and at the name of Jesus who is the Christ every devil would tremble and flee. Moreover, God ordained that in the presence of this flesh man Jesus, who is the Lord of glory, who is the Christ the word made flesh that one day every demon would stand in his presence at the great white throne judgment to be judged.
GIVING ACCOUNT OF WORK
Likewise we believers who have professed him as our saviour, our redeemer, our reconciler back to that great eternal spirit, we too must also stand before him–not at the great white throne judgment of course—but at the judgment seat of Christ and give an account unto him as to how we have lived in the flesh while professing this great truth. Yes, we must see him face to face and give an account. There I will be judged according to the deeds done in my body, whether they be good or bad, it will all determine where my position in the bride of Christ will be with him when he rules and reigns in his millennium reign on this earth.
Now, if any man build upon this foundation that I have already laid silver, gold, precious stones–and I am sure these illustrative objects Paul uses of such material of costly things are truly things of great value, aren’t they? While he uses these natural illustrations saying if you are going to be building upon this foundation which I have laid, be sure you build upon this foundation with such things as gold, silver and precious stones or either you will be using this wood, hay (grass) or stubble (straw).
DIFFERENTIATING BETWEEN TWO TYPES OF MATERIAL
No wonder those little South Pacific island huts during World War 2 would not last any time once a fire hit them. I remember seeing planes come over to bomb some of these places when they would be preparing for an invasion. My, these little huts made of bamboo, or coconut leaves would be engulfed in the flames in no time. However in Europe where we took part in removing the rubbish, those buildings having been made from a far more substantial material, it took far more to destroy them. Here Paul was differentiating between two types of material—if any man is to build upon this foundation already laid of the faith for the true believers, it should be with precious material such as gold, silver, or precious stones or either it will be of wood, grass or straw and I am sure you know how quickly wood, hay ( grass) and straw would burn if fire hit it!
WORKS, NOT SALVATION, IS JUDGED
Paul speaks of every man’ s work and not his faith, but his works as he says the works shall be revealed by fire as to what sort of works it is. Remember, it is man’s works and not his faith here, that is being tried. But by grace you are saved through faith. See, you are not saved by your works although James the apostle (James 2:14-18) says show me your faith without your works and I will show you my faith with my works. Remember faith without works is dead! Nevertheless, remember, It Is not our works that produces the faith needed in order to be saved. That is why I said earlier, you can work yourself, you can throw away a million packs of cigarettes trying to quit the habit, yet if you don’t allow the grace of God to come into your life with a new nature and get at the real cause of the problem, it is actually all a losing battle! When the grace of God is allowed to get into your life to get down there where the real cause of your problem lies and change that nature, watch how quickly those rotten apples will then drop off, watch how quickly things will then change once Christ takes over that nature. Yes, every man’s works (1 • Cor. 3:13) shall be made manifest (come to light). That is, be made known as to what character each one’s works are for the day shall declare (make known, announce it), because it shall be revealed by fire and the fire one day shall try every man’s works to see of what sort it is. Notice carefully what the Bible says, We are not interested in what church doctrine teaches, it is what the Bible says! Too many people live strictly to please some church teaching or what some seminary doctrine says about it! It is time we got back to what the Bible says, don’t you think? For every man’s works shall be tried because it shall be revealed by fire and the fire shall try every man’s works of what sort it is!
UNBELIEVER NOT AT JUDGMENT SEAT OF CHRIST
Listen carefully to what the next verse says and remember this, if you go into the ground an unbeliever or unjustified, you will never stand before the judgment seat of Christ! I must drive that home! You simply won’t be at the judgment seat of Christ! Where will you stand after death in your judgment? Before the great white throne judgment following the millennium reign. However, if you go into the ground as the Bible teaches in Rom. 8 in that same spirit which raised Christ from the dead, if that same spirit shall dwell in your body that raised Christ from the dead, it shall quicken your mortal body also as it did his! That same spirit will raise or quicken you. The Bible didn’t say you would raise if you had been awarded a 20 year attendance pen or you would raise if your name was on a church record somewhere or if you had been good to the preacher.–No, the Bible never said that! The Bible said If that same spirit that raised Jesus from the dead dwell in your mortal body, it would also quicken you! It matters not whether you lived 2000 or a thousand years ago, if that same spirit that was in Christ which is the very same spirit that watched over that life all along life’s journey as that vessel of clay was guided by that same spirit, it will be that same spirit in the end which will quicken the flesh and bring it from the grave a new, incorruptible body. Therefore note, all of those appearing before the judgment seat of Christ have already been changed from mortal to immortality, therefore it could not be a judgment to determine anyone’s salvation! I repeat, that must be determined now.
WORKS SURVIVE FIRE
If any man’s works abide or survives, verse 14 says, which he hath built thereupon he shall receive a reward (payment or receive his wages for his labor) because it shall be revealed by fire and the fire shall try every man’s works of what sort or kind it is. If any man’s works abide or survive he has built thereupon (foundation) he shall receive a reward. Bear in mind this reward is not eternal life because eternal life has already been settled long before this individual arrived at this judgment. Now are we the sons of God, John says speaking of those who are born again by the water and spirit, John 3:5, and it doeth not yet appear what we shall be but we know when he shall appear (in the catching away) we shall be like him for we shall see him as he is. If any man’s works shall be burned up or cannot survive the test verse 15 points out, such as the burning up of wood, hay or stubble, that man’s works shall definitely suffer loss (works wise he loses it all). Watch what he is saying that proves the reward of the one whose works abide was not that of eternal life but instead is that which he has merited through his faithful service on earth. The reward had to do with a position of authority with Christ when he returns to earth to rule and reign for that thousand years reign.
WORKS BURNED UP
Listen carefully to the wording– if any man’s works (not his salvation) shall be burned he shall suffer (great) loss. Recall concerning the other verse where Paul declared that the man would receive a reward—now had that reward been eternal life in verse 14 then the poor man in this verse (verse 15) would have suffered the loss of his eternal life! Yet the other verse is so clear to point out that neither salvation nor eternal life is involved at this judgment. No, it is not the reward of eternal life. The man receiving the reward in verse 14 shows his reward or payment has to be merited for service. Likewise, the other man who is suffering his loss shows it has no connection with his eternal life but it too also affects the merits given him as to what he did on earth in living and practicing his Christian life, doing those things in the flesh while professing to be a Christian. This man was certainly not faithful in his work and labor and therefore shall suffer great loss in that sense of reward!
SAVED BY FIRE
Look at what the remainder of verse 15 declares for it proves beyond any shadow of doubt the man is not losing any portion of his eternal life. Because he, the man himself, shall be saved, Paul says, yet so as by fire. He personally was saved but he lost everything else in the fire! Much like a man who escapes a burning building with his mere life but loses everything else in the fire. There it is, no question about it, the man’s works burned but he remained saved. That is what this verse is teaching. Therefore, at the judgment seat of Christ when all the works and all the things that he or she has done down here in their Christian life, if more of it proves to be of self than actually having allowed the grace of God to work within the vessel that person will definitely suffer loss of position in the millennium reign of Christ.
PHILLIPS MODERN ENGLISH TRANSLATION OF I COR. 3:9-15
“In this work, we work with God, and that means that you are a field under God’s cultivation, or if you like, a house being built to his plan, like a master builder who knows his job, by the grace God has given me, lay the foundation; someone else builds upon it. I only say this, let the builder be careful how he builds! The foundation is laid already, and no one can lay another, for it is Jesus Christ himself. But any man who builds on the foundation using as his material gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw, must know that each man’s work will one day be shown for what it is. The day will show it plainly enough, for the day will arise in a blaze of fire, and that fire will prove the value of each man’s work. If the work which a man has built upon the foundation stands this test, he will t be rewarded. But if his work is burned down, he loses it all. He personally will be safe, though rather like a man rescued from a fire.”
UNFAITHFULNESS WON’T SURVIVE
Many people definitely desire so strongly to be something big that they almost wind up missing the entire thing completely. They are never seemingly content with something small, it always has to be something larger. If they were only able to be content with what God makes available and recognize the grace of God in that and simply be thankful. Oh if we could only realize how much faithfulness there can be in little things which absolutely can be responsible for meriting greater things at that judgment! Did not he who is the just one, the one who will judge us at his own judgment seat, declare thou who hast been faithful over a few things I will make you ruler over many things. See beloved, his rewards at this judgment are not payments or wages in such terms as dollars and cents. No, don’t expect your payment to be some big paycheck for your labor of service, for your faithfulness, in your labor of love. No! Because if the greatest reward is eternal life then I know that all other rewards for serving him faithfully couldn’t possibly be in dollars and cents but instead it has to do with positions of authority for the millennium.
FAITHFULNESS IN LITTLE THINGS PAYS OFF
Whatever Christ has given to you in the way of gifts or talents here as a Christian to live for him, as you live obedient to whatever measure of grace he has given you and you prove yourself faithful in that, then that faithfulness is what is absolutely going to be the measuring rod or the thing that is going to help establish the position of your place in relationship to him in that thousand year reign when he returns back with those same saints and set up a kingdom here upon this earth, there we begin to hear him say, thou hast been faithful–notice that important word faithful—(Lk. 19:17-19) thou hast been faithful over a few things therefore I am going to make you ruler over ten cities or five cities and so forth. The Bible declares in Revelations 1:6 he has made us unto our God kings and priests and we shall rule and reign on the earth.
But I don’t want to rule and reign down here on earth, someone will say, I want to go to heaven, I want to live there! Beloved, the Bible doesn’t teach that you are going to live in heaven although most church programs have. The Bible plainly teaches you are going to live (and reign) right here on this earth. That may shock some of you because I realize you may have never been taught that. Much churchanity has simply taught that when we die we go to heaven and there remain through the endless ages. Beloved, if that is what you have been taught then you have never been taught what the Bible teaches concerning the subject. You have only been taught some church doctrine or church idea.
RULING ON EARTH
The Bible does teach if you die before the coming of Jesus for his own and you have been a true and faithful believer in the word of God, your spirit will definitely go to a glory to rest there for only a period of time. To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (2 Cor. 5:141). Moreover, the same Bible that teaches that also teaches that one day there will be a resurrection. If you believe in a resurrection of the just you may also rest assured that Christ isn’t going to take you up into the clouds of glory where you are to meet the Lord and there to be whisked off to glory where he will keep you for eternity. No, the Bible definitely does not teach any such idea!
The Bible teaches in Rev. 19:11-16 that heaven one day opened and John the Revelator saw Jesus astride a white horse, along with all his armies riding white horses. Clothed in spotless white linen. Where were they headed? No, they were not a myth, they were for real returning back to earth once again to live and reign a thousand years on this earth with the Lord himself who, the scripture says, with a rod of iron will shepherd the mortal nations throughout the thousand years reign.