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Explore Sermons By Dr. Lloyd-Jones

Not in Word; but Power

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A Sermon on 1 Corinthians 4:20

For the kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power. (ESV)

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What does the apostle Paul mean when he says that the kingdom of God consists not of word, but of power? This is the question that Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones seeks to answer in this sermon from 1 Corinthians 4:20. He says that Paul was not like many of his contemporary wise men in that he did not have a great appearance, nor did he speak with power. For Paul was not concerned with these things because he trusted not in himself, but in the power of God. Dr. Lloyd-Jones continues to show that the kingdom of God is not about clever words or gifted speakers, but the kingdom of God is about the power of God, namely Christ Jesus and His gospel. How is the power of God seen? If the Christian looks to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, they will see men and women who were totally transformed by the power of God. This new power that they received was not their own doing, but it came from God empowering His people in order that they might serve Him. This God-given power is what enables Christians to fight sin, boldly proclaim the gospel, and live a life that seeks the kingdom of God.


Additional Scripture Translations

1 Corinthians 4:20, New American Standard Bible

20For the kingdom of God is not in words, but in power.

1 Corinthians 4:20, King James Version

20For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.


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.