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What does the rejection of Jesus by His own people teach us about mankind? We might be tempted to overlook the story of Jesus’ fellow Jews rejecting Him as ancient history. But in this sermon on Luke 4:22, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows that there is more than meets the eye. He says that the Jewish people’s rejection of Jesus is not borne out of rational arguments or reason, but it is a result of unbelief. They stumbled over Jesus’ message because sin had such a grip on their hearts that they were not able to understand the message of God’s grace. Pride and sin blind all men from seeing the truth of the Gospel until God in His grace breaks into their world. Sin is a state, not only action. All men are in this state of sin until God opens their eyes so that they can believe. At the heart of this story is the message that man is in sin and that God is a Savior. It is ultimately a message of hope for all who believe because it is the only means of being forgiven and made new in God. This sermon calls us all to believe in Jesus.
Why do men and women today reject Jesus? In this message from Luke 4:22, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains modern man rejects the Gospel for the same reason that the Jewish people of Jesus’ day rejected him, Jesus is not who they want Him to be. Jesus is not a mere moral teacher dedicated to giving them a better life. He is the Son of God that has come into to the world to take away its sin and destroy evil. Man, in his prejudice, rejects the idea that he could need a Savior because mankind naturally hates the idea that he is a vile sinner in need of divine grace. So, man uses his so-called reason as an excuse to reject the Gospel. What then does this sermon mean for each and every one of us? This sermon tells us that bad news that man is in sin and in denial of his situation, and it tells man that he is lost and on a path to eternal destruction. But more importantly, it tells us that Jesus died for sinners. Jesus alone can overcome man’s hatred and prejudice; Jesus alone can make fallen sinners children of God. This sermon contains the only message of true and lasting hope: the message of the Gospel.
Who is Jesus? To answer this question, we must look at all the extraordinary miracles and deeds He performed before many witnesses. These all affirm His claim the He is who He says He is: God in the flesh. But then, if the evidence is clear, why did so may in Jesus’ time reject Him, just as many reject Him today? In this message from Luke 5:17, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones says that the answer is simple: prejudice. Sin has corrupted every part of man, including his judgment of facts. Man does not have a detached mind that can assess the evidence because he is bound to his sin. He cannot have a truly open mind to the claims of Christianity and the Bible. Is there a way out of this predicament? Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones tells us that man cannot come to know God through his own accord, but by the grace of God, man’s eyes can be opened so that he sees the truth. Man can do nothing of his self to fight his sin, but by God’s grace he can be set free. This sermon brings the message of hope and peace in the Gospel for all who believe in Jesus. Mankind does not have to suffer for his sin because Jesus has come to take his place.
The Gospel recognises; and is based on; facts not ignorance; man's accomplishments reveal his failure; the error of concentrating on the material; modern man dismisses Christianity without looking at the facts; unbelief is moral; and not intellectual; the eternal significance of of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Lord confronts His enemies; prejudice; not knowledge; is the reason for unbelief; the example of the Pharisees; the meaning of His death.
Knowledge; man's excuse for unbelief; this attitude not original; the Epicureans and Stoics; their beliefs examined; philosophy still seeking to understand the same questions; the fact of the Resurrection; the judgement to come; God's way of salvation; His Son.
Being religious does not guarantee salvation. Working from Acts 23:6-8, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows how there are many in Scripture who pass themselves off as being deeply religious, but are not saved. This is the condition of the Jewish Pharisees and Sadducees that opposed the Apostles, particularly Paul, representing the unbelieving man in many respects. They are well-educated intellectuals who are blinded by their sin from believing in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This unbelief is prejudiced opposition. They oppose the message of Christ because it contradicts their traditions, for they had no place for a crucified Messiah who had no kingdom and who came from an uneducated family. He was not born into the top of the social pyramid and educated like themselves. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains how modern man rejects the Gospel for many of the same reasons. They think it is backwards and old fashioned. They say it is intellectually ridiculous. But this is prejudice that is the result of sin. For man’s problems with Christianity are never simply intellectual or moral, but at the core of these beliefs lies his opposition to God and his Law. For as all men are dead in trespasses and sin, so they are unable to evaluate the truth claims of Christianity as merely rational thinkers, but they are prompted by their sinful nature to oppose this message. This why the Gospel must be a supernatural message, for without the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit no man would be able to believe and be saved.
The characteristics of the Christian; the two possibilities; what determines the choice; the characteristics of the unbeliever; the final judgement comes to all; the results of the judgement.
About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.