Hearing and Learning Christ
A Sermon on Ephesians 4:20-21
But that is not the way you learned Christ!—assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, (ESV)
Those who try to separate the call of the Gospel from the call to be holy make a great error, according to Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones. From Ephesians, he argues that the Bible presents the life of faith as a pursuit of holiness and righteousness that comes out of the new man through the Holy Spirit. We ought not separate belief in the Gospel from living out the call of God in our lives to be imitators of Christ and to obey all that he commands. Preachers who misunderstand the connection between holiness and belief in the Gospel often confuse those that they seek to evangelize by presenting the Christian life as compartmentalized. However, as Dr. Lloyd-Jones points out, even the pursuit of holiness in the life of the Christian is ultimately a result of what God has done in and through his Son Jesus Christ. Christians can easily fall into legalism when they disconnect the sovereign act of salvation from everyday Christian life. We must avoid dualisms knowing that Christ made us a new people by his death and resurrection. Therefore we respond in love and obedience, not as a way to gain favor with God, but because Christ has already done so for us.