The Book of 1 Corinthians
Listen as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones discusses the greatest tragedy of all – the rejection of the Gospel. Apart from this, the world would not know tragedy. The trouble with man is that he is by nature a fool. We must not glory in man; we must not rely upon him with all our trust. In this sermon on 1 Corinthians 3:21-23, learn about the cult of personality and the fundamental lack of fitness man has to hold the allegiance of other men. Man’s powers are altogether given to him; he is a created being. Men are selfish and always changing. To glory in man is to be enslaved, furthermore to glory in self is to be enslaved. “Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown.” Do not be deceived, life is a master to you, you are not a captain of your soul. Discover the wisdom of glorying in Christ! The Gospel is a call to glory in Christ alone. Christ voluntarily takes a place of subordination and humiliation to work out God’s great plan of redemption. Christ wasn't mastered by life, He conquered death. See the world in a different way — see it as a work of God’s hands.
What is the hope for humanity? It was once believed civilization would bring a utopian society. The world developed around the idea that philosophy, education, knowledge, culture, and housing would create harmony among humans. On the contrary, our civilization has produced greater and more violent wars. Civilization has ended, not in utopia, but failure. In this sermon on 1 Corinthians 3:11, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explores divisions in the Corinthian church. Unity is threatened as a popularity contest ensues. The Apostle Paul is compelled to deal with the problem as it affects the cross. The Corinthian problem is found in their cracked foundation. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains that if the foundation is not right, nothing is right. The right foundation deals with two fundamental questions. First, who is man? And second, who is God? The right foundation is laid, not by man, but by God in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Without this foundation, life becomes completely meaningless, descending into chaos and division. What is the problem with humanity? The answer is not the lack of education, politics, or culture. The human problem is that we've built our own foundation on sand. Listen in as Dr. Lloyd-Jones proclaims Jesus Christ alone as the adequate foundation.
What is our foundation in this life? Is it our personal possessions or our sense of security? Man puts his hope and bases his life on many things. In this sermon on 1 Corinthians 3:11, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones says that any foundation in life that is not Jesus Christ is doomed to fail! For all other foundations are passing and transient; they satisfy, but only temporarily. But Jesus Christ is an eternal foundation that can never be shaken. He is a foundation that never leaves us wanting for more. For Christ alone can satisfy our deepest needs and desires. It is only Christ who can take away our sin and make us children of God. The greatest tragedy is that many reject Christ as their hope, and turn to everything else that is vain and passing away. What are you trusting in? Where is your hope? Christ calls us all to turn away from the world and trust solely in His work on the cross for our salvation. All other foundations are like sinking sand, but Jesus Christ is God’s appointed means of salvation as the only sure and steady foundation for all who believe.
Are you truly free? Modern man has declared himself free from the tyranny of religion, but what has been the effect? He is now enslaved to and governed by the popular opinion of man. In this sermon on 1 Corinthians 3:21-23, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones directs our attention to Paul’s concern over division in the Corinthian church – a division that was the result of their glorying in their apostolic leaders instead of Christ. There is only One who can set us free from enslavement to the things of this world. He is the Son of God, for whom and through whom all things exist. He came to set us free from the guilt of our sin, the reign of the devil, and the condemnation of the Law of God. He is coming again to destroy every enemy and to set up His eternal reign of righteousness and peace. If you believe in Him, you become a part of Him. You are Christ’s and in Him all things are yours. What does this mean? There is now no point in glorying in men. In Christ, you are no longer enslaved to their power, influence, or opinion. You are no longer enslaved even to your circumstances. You are truly free to experience His full salvation.
On what is the Christian life built? Is the hope resting in financial security or job status? If all of that came crashing down, would Christians have something to fall back on? In this sermon on 1 Corinthians 3:10–11, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on the importance of foundations for the Christian life. Houses require proper foundations in order to secure their safety and structural integrity for the many years to come. Though it takes time and effort to lay a good foundation, it is absolutely necessary to ensure a building remains safe. By themselves, humanity is incapable of providing the foundation needed because all the typical “foundations” are changing and temporary— sex, money, and power are here one moment and gone the next. There is no other foundation that will stand the test of time than that which is built on a relationship with Jesus Christ. As Dr. Lloyd-Jones asks this most important question: Is the Christian’s life built on the foundation of Jesus Christ? Without this foundation, joy will rise and fall with the changing seasons of prosperity and difficulty. Listen as Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches on why lives must be built on the eternal, unchanging truth of the gospel.
words, thinking, philosophy, men, foundation, life, desire, principle, truth, morality, uncertainty, God, prepared, sin, chief end
What are you building your life on? After Paul’s departure from the Corinthian church, it had started to divide itself into factions. He perceived that the trouble lay at the very foundation itself. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains from 1 Corinthians 3:11 that it is the same today when the world tries to deal with the symptoms of evil while avoiding the problem at its foundation: that it has no foundation. Not only that, man in himself is completely incapable of providing a foundation. He has astounding knowledge and accomplishments, yet he’s been unable to find a solution to all his troubles. His approach is wrong. He’s in too much of a hurry. He does not understand himself. He senses that there’s something or someone greater than himself, yet he has no desire for the Church or of Christ. The Bible, on the other hand, deals with the great question of the foundation of life itself. It tells us of One who is a flawless inspector, who will judge the foundation of all of our lives based on His own perfect standards. Yet, this inspector is also the One who came to seek and save the lost. He offered Himself up as God in flesh to become the Church’s one, exclusive, firm foundation.
“Why is it that modern man, who has been so astounding in so many respects, is such a miserable and tragic failure in the whole questions of life and of living?” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones asks this question to highlight that though man has achieved enormous accomplishments, he is still suffering with the basic questions of life, questions that are solved only in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Why are people generally interested in seeking answers from anyone except God? Why, instead of coming to Jesus, do they fall at the feet of celebrities who are also struggling? Ultimately, why do they reject the Gospel? In this sermon from 1 Corinthians 3:16, Dr. Lloyd-Jones reminds us that man’s ultimate sin is intellectual pride. God’s salvation brings it to dust, yet, man rejects this because of his confidence in himself. God’s way of solving the problems of life are far different from the world’s approach. Lloyd-Jones provides three ways in which the two pathways are different: the world relies on man’s wisdom, the world says that man is good in and of himself, and the world holds that the issue needing to be fixed is a matter of intellect, not sin. However, Scripture shows the opposite— man’s problem is sin, and the only solution is a Savior.
Are you wise by worldly standards? Do you understand life's fundamental issues? In this sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones addresses worldly wisdom in light of Paul's words to the Corinthians in 1 Corinthians 3:18-20. The world has rejected the Gospel for centuries, and its rejection of the Gospel is nothing new. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is a complete contrast to what humans think of themselves by nature. Mankind, Dr. Lloyd-Jones preaches, always seeks to advance itself and improve itself. The Gospel, in contrast, knows that mankind needs rebirth, and this must be done by the Spirit. The Gospel cannot be changed or modified, since it is perfect and complete in every way. The fundamental problem with mankind's solutions, Dr. Lloyd-Jones preaches, is that mankind's solutions originate in man's mind. God's solution transcends human reason and offers the only hope for man's salvation. Dr. Lloyd-Jones mentions H.G. Wells, a popular author and philosopher. Even with his own philosophical solutions, Wells was devastated by the reality of World War II, and was extremely destitute at the end of his life. A man can only be made wise after he admits he's a fool. Have you become a fool? Have you repented and turned to Christ?