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Now and Then

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A Sermon on 1 Corinthians 13:9-13

For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.

So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love. (ESV)

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The Christian's hope in Christ radically changes how we see the future. Why is this? In this sermon Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones answers this question by looking at 1 Corinthians 13:9-13. There, we see that Christians are new people in Christ. This means that they now live new lives, not focused on the passing things of this world, but on the eternal things of God. Christians can look at the future, not as something dark and mysterious, but they can have hope knowing that Christ reigns over all things and will bring His Kingdom to completion! This is not mere escapism, but it is a real hope experienced here and now based on the faithfulness of God. Unbelievers cannot have any true and lasting hope for the future. The best they can have is a blind optimism that cannot really give any hope. This sermon calls us all to forsake our sins and look to Jesus who is our hope today and tomorrow. Only by believing in Jesus can we have our sins removed and become the children of God. This then is our hope for everything in life.


Additional Scripture Translations

1 Corinthians 13:9-13, New American Standard Bible

9For we know in part and prophesy in part; 10but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away with. 11When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. 12For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully, just as I also have been fully known. 13But now faith, hope, and love remain, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

1 Corinthians 13:9-13, King James Version

9For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. 10But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. 11When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. 13And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.


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.