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Righteousness; Temperance; Judgement

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A Sermon on Acts 24:24-27

After some days Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish, and he sent for Paul and heard him speak about faith in Christ Jesus. And as he reasoned about righteousness and self-control and the coming judgment, Felix was alarmed and said, “Go away for the present. When I get an opportunity I will summon you.” At the same time he hoped that money would be given him by Paul. So he sent for him often and conversed with him. When two years had elapsed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus. And desiring to do the Jews a favor, Felix left Paul in prison. (ESV)

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The Gospel makes fallen sinners uneasy because it condemns all sin and unrighteousness that defiles God’s Law. It is not a comforting message, as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones proclaims from Acts 24:24-27; it rightly condemns all who will not repent and believe in it. This is the case of Felix and Drusilla when the apostle Paul preaches the Gospel to them. They are both living in an adulterous relationship and unjustly holding Paul in prison. Paul does not try to convince them of the reasonability of Christianity and its claims, but tells them the need for righteousness and the great wrath when all men will be judged for the deeds done in the flesh. This is why the Gospel is such an urgent message, for all men are appointed to die and suffer judgement. And it is only by believing in the Gospel of Jesus Christ that any can escape the righteous wrath of God. However, as Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains, often times the Church is more concerned with politics and moralism than they are with the preaching of the only true hope for mankind. This is the great message that God has entrusted to the church. It is the truth that Jesus Christ died for sinners so that all who believe will be saved.


Additional Scripture Translations

Acts 24:24-27, New American Standard Bible

24Now some days later Felix arrived with Drusilla his wife, who was Jewish, and he sent for Paul and heard him speak about faith in Christ Jesus. 25But as he was discussing righteousness, self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix became frightened and responded, “Go away for now, and when I have an opportunity, I will summon you.” 26At the same time he was also hoping that money would be given to him by Paul; therefore he also used to send for him quite often and talk with him. 27But after two years had passed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus; and Felix, wanting to do the Jews a favor, left Paul imprisoned.

Acts 24:24-27, King James Version

24And after certain days, when Felix came with his wife Drusilla, which was a Jewess, he sent for Paul, and heard him concerning the faith in Christ. 25And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee. 26He hoped also that money should have been given him of Paul, that he might loose him: wherefore he sent for him the oftener, and communed with him. 27But after two years Porcius Festus came into Felix’ room: and Felix, willing to shew the Jews a pleasure, left Paul bound.


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.