Darkness and Light
A Sermon on Ephesians 4:17-19
The New Life
Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. (ESV)
The greatest hindrance to belief in the Gospel does not arise from man’s intellect, but from his heart that has been darkened by sin. With Ephesians 4:17-19, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones exhorts us to heed the warning of Christ that all men in their natural state are alienated from God and unable to pursue what is good and right. This is because the effects of the fall extend to every aspect of man. It corrupts his mind, hardens his heart, and distorts his will. Despite his fallen state, men still place great worth and confidence in their ability to reason and know morality. This is evident in the many great philosophers of the ancient world who after all their learning and knowledge were still never able to come to true knowledge of God. As Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches, this shows that what man needs is not simply more knowledge, but a new heart and mind that is freed from the mastery of sin and its domination. However, freedom from sin comes only through the Gospel of grace and the sovereign working of the Holy Spirit. This is why it is so important to pray that God would work in hearts and minds of others to reveal himself to them and give them a true understanding of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.