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Sermon #2031

The Living God

A Sermon on Acts 4:23-24


Acts 4:23-24 ESV KJV
When they were released, they went to their friends and reported what the chief priests and the elders had said to them. And when they heard it, they lifted their voices together to God and said, “Sovereign Lord, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and everything …

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Sermon Description

What is one of the primary marks of a Christian? According to Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones in this sermon on Acts 423-24, one of the surest signs of a true Christian is that true Christians pray to God. These are not prayers to some distant deity or to some abstract philosophical ground of truth, but it is prayer to the one true God who rules the whole universe in power and might. This is the true God as revealed in the Bible and in Jesus Christ his Son. This is the God of the Old Testament patriarchs and prophets, and he is the God of the church and the Apostles. He is active in history to save and redeem his people. He is the God who sent His only begotten Son to die on a cross in order to make a great kingdom that cannot be shaken. And it is this God who offers redemption and salvation to all who will repent and believe in His Son, and all those that do will be made anew in the new heavens and the new earth. This great gospel should not be rejected, but all must believe in God’s only begotten Son who has died on the cross so that sinners would have life eternal.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The sermon examines Acts 4:23-24 which describes the disciples praying after being threatened by the Sanhedrin.
  2. The sermon considers how one can know if they are truly a Christian. The "acid test" is how one reacts to trials and tribulations.
  3. The disciples' reaction to the threats of the Sanhedrin demonstrates true Christianity. They pray to God with confidence and assurance.
  4. Prayer is speaking to the living God. It is not repetition, posture, or thoughtless words. True prayer demonstrates a knowledge of God's character and power.
  5. The disciples knew God as the living God, the sovereign Lord, and the all-powerful God who created the universe. They prayed with confidence because they knew His power.
  6. We can know God through nature, revelation (Scripture), history (God's actions), and through Jesus Christ. All demonstrate God's power, sovereignty, and love.
  7. The miracles and resurrection of Jesus prove He is the Son of God. His power over death and nature demonstrates God's power.
  8. The coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost also demonstrated God's power to the disciples. They had experienced God's power personally.
  9. Although threatened with death, the disciples were not afraid because they knew God's power. They prayed for God to demonstrate His power.
  10. We live in a world being "shaken" but we can rely on God's unshakable kingdom by repenting, believing in Christ, and knowing God.
  11. God's kingdom is eternal and unshakable. We must make sure we are part of it.

The Book of Acts

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.