The Book of John
MLJ's main series of 185 sermons on John's Gospel; plus his early series of 64 sermons, and a small collection of 13 other sermons preached at Westminster Chapel that were not part of either series.
Attacked By The Devil
What can give the Christian assurance that they are a child of God? In this sermon from John 1:12–13, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones describes how knowledge of the devil and his attacks can give surety of salvation. The Christian is faced with deception, temptation, and accusation from the devil. These hardships point out the fact that the Christian is not conformed to this world or the prince of this world, the devil. Moreover, Dr. Lloyd-Jones points out that “the Christian is an inevitable rebuke to everybody else.” The world does not hate the “good” and moral person, but the world hates the good moral Christian. Dr. Lloyd-Jones elaborates on the particulars of living in the world as a Christian and how to understand the attacks of the devil as evidences of the identity of the Christian as a child of God rather than a child of the devil. This sermon challenges how the Christian fights for assurance and gives hope to the individual struggling with sin, temptation, and accusation.
To Walk with God
What does it mean to walk with God and know Him personally? In this sermon on walking with God from John 1:12–13, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones examines the example of Enoch and shows how knowing that God is pleased with His child is of utmost importance to the assurance of salvation. Christians must ask themselves do they only renounce evil or do they also embrace and walk in righteousness. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains how walking in submission to God’s self-revelation is the essence of walking with God. Moreover, the one who walks with God must have faith. Dr. Lloyd-Jones defines faith as “an acceptance and submission to the revelation of God.” Knowledge of God is not enough to walk with Him; one must also submit to the will of God through the Holy Scriptures. Throughout this sermon, Dr. Lloyd-Jones draws beautiful illustrations of the friendship with God, as well as the hope for salvation. Walking with God in this world is a great assurance that the Christian will one day forever walk with God in the eternal home.
Leading of the Spirit
In this sermon on John 1:12-13 titled “Leading with the Spirit,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains one of the finest tests of faith known in the Scriptures: is the Christian led by the Holy Spirit? If one is led by the Spirit, they are unmistakably a child of God. Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches how knowledge of the Trinity affects one’s knowledge of assurance. He explains that the Spirit came to glorify the Son. Therefore, if led by the Spirit of God, His leading will always be toward Christ, the Messiah. If the Christian is being led to believe, follow, submit, and glory in Christ, they are undoubtedly led by the Spirit of God. From regenerating hearts to inspiring Scripture, the Spirit’s work always points toward Christ. Dr. Lloyd-Jones elaborates on doctrines including the Trinity, the inspiration of Scripture, and the spiritual gifts. Those weary in heart who question their salvation can listen along as Dr. Lloyd-Jones brings hope to the heart of Christians and clarity of the doctrine of assurance.
A More Excellent Way
In the sermon titled “A More Excellent Way,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones continues his series on John 1:12–13 by shedding light on the topic of the Holy Spirit. This topic, which is often shrouded in foggy notions and vague ideas, has light to bring to the Christian stranded in a dark season of lack of assurance. For anyone who fears grieving the Holy Spirit, there is assurance. The person who does not know God may fear losing their good name. They may fear failure, but be assured, Christians should not fear grieving the Holy Spirit. Dr. Lloyd-Jones touches on these notes, as well the difference between spiritual gifts and spiritual fruit, and several other chords that ring close to the heartbeat of the Christian. Before he closes his discourse, Dr. Lloyd-Jones focuses on the way that three of the fruit of the Spirit impact the Christian life – love, joy, and peace. The sermon asks the listener to examine their own soul and ask “do these divine realities live in my soul? Do I weep when the Holy Spirit is grieved by my sin? Does love for God and love for my neighbor mark my life? Does joy and peace mark my soul despite suffering and hardship?”
A More Excellent Sacrifice
The Christian is meant to know that they are the child of God. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones elaborates that there are two types of assurance: the test of faith and the test of the Christian walk. In this sermon on John 1:12–13 and Hebrews 11 called “A More Excellent Sacrifice,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones examines both tests in regard to the example of Cain and Abel. He describes how Cain and Abel relied on two separate sources for authority. While Cain relied on his own merit and reasoning, Abel offered a more excellent sacrifice and relied on faith. This is still true of humanity today. There are two sources of authority in the world: reliance on deeds, rationale, or penitence to appease the wrath of the almighty God or relying by faith on the sacrifice of Christ to appease God and present the Christian as righteous. The Christian can ask themselves if they, by faith, submit themselves to the holy Scriptures, and are perceived by the world to rely on Scripture and are accused of taking religion too seriously. These are very likely signs that the Christian relies on Christ as their Savior and Lord.
Noah believed God
In this sermon on Noah from John 1:12-13 and Hebrews 11 titled “Noah Believed God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones gives the example of Noah and teaches that the Christian life is supposed to be markedly different than the rest of the world. Noah’s life was marked by faith and radical obedience. The rest of the world was consumed by ungodliness but Noah believed God when God warned him of coming wrath. He obeyed the word of God to build an ark and Noah’s faith contrasted the whole world. The Christian life is meant to be in contrast with the world. If the Christian has faith, they will not look like the world because that faith will change what they do with their speech, body, and mind. The Christian who is out of place because of righteousness is right where they should be. Dr. Lloyd-Jones describes the righteousness of the believer by saying that they are not perfect or sinless, but thoroughly upright and sincere. Even when a Christian sins, they strive toward righteousness. Like Noah, the Christian does not merely hear the warnings of wrath, but heeds them and hides in Christ.
Abraham; Man of Faith
In this sermon from his series on John 1:12–13, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones discusses the richness of assurance of salvation. He highlights the beautiful truth that Christians are not only forgiven of sins when we come to believe in Christ, but they are also born again. They are born not of flesh, but of God and adopted in as His children. Dr. Lloyd-Jones also brings in the illustration of faith and assurance in the life and person of Abraham. He encourages us from Abraham’s example found in Genesis 15, Hebrews 11:8–12, and other Scripture references. The listener hears of Abraham’s deep faith in God, his faith in action, and God’s plan. Despite the fact that God’s promises to Abraham were not immediately fulfilled, and the way of fulfillment was unknown, Abraham still “went out not knowing where he was going” because he believed God and His promises. Dr. Lloyd-Jones urges the listener to consider their faith: do they believe God and His promises? Do they not only intellectually believe, but also live out faith in obedience? Do they live in the blessed joy of assurance?
Abraham; Faith in Action
Can Christians have assurance of their salvation? This is not a merely speculative question, but it is at the heart of much of the Gospel. In this sermon on John 1:12-13, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches the great truth that those who are saved in Christ can and should know that they are redeemed! He looks at the example of Abraham who is told by God to go sacrifice his son, Isaac. Abraham goes because he trusts in God and in His promises. He does not doubt that God can even bring his son back from the dead! While God intervenes at the last moment so that Abraham does not have to sacrifice his son, Abraham’s faith and assurance in God is still displayed. Christians can see their assurance in their external actions, but also by recognizing that they are trusting in Christ. Those that have repented of their sins and rest wholly in Christ’s death can know that they are now safe in the arms of God. They can know that God loves them and has sent His Son to die for them! This is one of the most comforting truths in the Christians life and should be a great source of encouragement for all believers.
To See Him Who Is Invisible
How does living in the assurance of God’s love for the Christian change their life? If the life of Moses is considered, a person of faith is one who is confident that they belong not to this world, but to the people of God. In this sermon on John 1:12–13, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains how Moses turned his back on his old life as a prince with all its power and glory to be counted amongst the people of God. He was willing to suffer as an Israelite because he knew who he was. It is no different in the life of New Testament believers. [MOU1] Those who are confident in their place in Christ are willing to suffer for Him, even to the point of death. Those who doubt that they are God’s children will have a hard time suffering for Him and His gospel. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows that the matter of assurance is a profoundly practical question that impacts how the Christian lives in the world and lives for the gospel. The glorious truth of the gospel is that all can know that they are saved. All who believe in Jesus can know that they are resting in God, and that God is wholly for them.
Truly Man. Truly God
In this sermon on John 1:16 titled “Truly Man Truly God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones touches on the importance of receiving Christ’s fullness and understanding Christ’s nature for the life of a believer. The Scripture tells the Christian to receive Christ’s fullness, but how are Christians supposed to do this? First, Dr. Lloyd-Jones says that the Christian is to spend time meditating on Him and His fullness. Second, the Christian must move from thinking about this fullness merely as a theological concept, and instead see it as deeply personal. Dr. Lloyd-Jones states that moving from the intellectual perspective to a more personal one is the end goal of looking at Christian doctrine— it is a means of learning about the Lord so He can be known better. Dr. Lloyd-Jones also preaches on what Scripture means when it says that He is both fully God and fully man, and the questions regarding whether Jesus emptied himself of his deity completely, or is there some other possibility. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains the nature of this topic and answers common questions and provides an encouragement that it is okay to admit that some things about God’s nature are a mystery and are hard to understand.
All Received of His Fullness
When the Christian is forgiven by God, reconciled to him, and intimately know Him through His Word and Spirit, it is because of Jesus. If the Christian has received anything good from the Lord, it is always and only because of Jesus the Messiah. In this sermon on His fullness from John 1:16, Dr. Lloyd-Jones discusses the idea of the fullness of Christ. He also says in order to understand that we receive anything from Christ, we ought to understand how and why. From His incarnation to His ascension, Jesus is sufficient to reconcile, save, justify, and make propitiation for His people. Dr. Lloyd-Jones points out that Jesus must be man in order to fulfill the law and be the federal head. This sermon points out that Christ must be the mighty one who can bear the full weight of God’s wrath on the cross and conquer even death. Furthermore His death had to be enough to outweigh the sin of His people now and forever. Christians are able to receive the full benefits of Christ because their mighty Lord, who knew no sin, bore the wrath of God in their stead.
The Blood of the New Covenant
How does Christ begin the new covenant? In this discourse on John 1:16 titled “The Blood of the New Covenant,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones elaborates on the old and new covenants. If any are to benefit from Christ, they must benefit under the new covenant that Christ Himself said was a new covenant in His own blood. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains that Christ ratified the new covenant with His blood and as every old covenant was begun with blood, so too the new covenant would begin with blood. Not only do Christians benefit from the life and work of Christ on Earth, but Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains how they also benefit from the assurance of Christ’s intercession at the right hand of God in heaven. Finally, Dr. Lloyd-Jones gloriously explains the priesthood of Christ and that the Savior will never cease to be the priest nor need to make a sacrifice for sin again. Dr. Lloyd-Jones gives assurance that the sacrifice of Christ was once and for all time. His sacrifice will never be looked upon by the Father as insufficient or without power. If Christ’s blood covers one sin, then it covers all of them.
Our Great High Priest
Everyone seems to accept the phrase “Jesus loves you,” but far fewer people are willing to accept the fact that God the Father loves them. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones addresses this fallacy and others in his sermon on John 1:16 concerning our great high priest, Jesus the Christ. The Father is the one who sent the Son to save His people. Dr. Lloyd-Jones spends much of this sermon discussing the depth and height of Christ’s ability to save. Moreover, he elaborates how Christ can be a priest after the order of Melchizedek despite the Old Testament law that required priests from the tribe of Levi. Anyone who doubts that their sins can actually be wiped clean should look no further than the sacrifice of Christ and His perfect fulfilment of the office of high priest. His perfect sacrifice is more than sufficient to be the perfect plea before God.
Lord of All
When many think of Jesus Christ, they think of His life and work, His teaching and His miracles, His mercy, grace, and love? Each of these grant some great blessing to the Christian but in this sermon on John 1:16, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones elaborates on how the Christian receives good from the Lord because of Christ's exultation. Even as Jesus was crucified, died, and was buried, He also ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. Dr. Lloyd-Jones elaborates that it is from this exulted position that He makes intercession for His people. In this sermon titled “Lord of All,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones recounts the might of human empires that rise and fall. Again and again, nations rage and kingdoms plot in vain, but never does one kingdom seize all power or hold it for very long. Dr. Lloyd-Jones encourages the Christian to take heart when wars arise to know that the Messiah is the one who is seated on the heavenly throne. The one who intercedes is the same that calmed the storms with a word, and is the very word of power by which the wind and waves were created. He is the strong tower.
The Promise of the Spirit
What could be better than living with the incarnated Son of God? What could be better than audibly hearing His voice and feeling the wounds He bears from the cross? Remarkably, Jesus said that the sending of the Spirit would be better than if Jesus stayed on Earth bodily. In this sermon from John 1:16 titled “The Promise of the Spirit,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones discusses the glorious truths surrounding the sending of the Spirit and its impact on Christian theology and practice. He traces the activity of the Spirit from Genesis through Acts to see how the giving of the Spirit at Pentecost was a vital gift from Christ to His Church. The Spirit was involved intimately with creation and in giving strength and wisdom to the people of God, but only in the new covenant is the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit found as the new norm for the people of God. This giving of the Holy Spirit is intimately connected to the Christian’s understanding of the new heart and the sanctification of the Christian.
The Christian and the World
How does the Christian respond to political turmoil? What is the wisdom of God? How is it different from the wisdom of the world? In this sermon from John 1:16, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones elaborates on the difference between the Christian and the world. The Christian, he proclaims, has a fundamentally different worldview than the unbeliever. They approach the same situations with different understanding. They are capable of sorrow and empathy, but are not limited to a surface understanding of evil. The Christian understands the doctrine of depravity, that humanity apart from Christ is left to wickedness. They are aware that since the fall of Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden, the world itself is under the just curse of God. The Christian is not overly optimistic about the political leaders that arise, nor are they too pessimistic. The Christian knows that these leaders will not save, and also knows that the gates of hell will not prevail against the Church of God. The Christian has a steadfast hope in the face of wars and rumors of wars: Jesus Christ, the Anointed One of God, is the King and He will not fail, forsake, or ultimately disappoint those who hope in Him.
The Quest of Man
What has been the greatest quest of humanity? The search for wisdom. In this sermon on John 1:16 titled “The Quest of Man,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones describes the search for wisdom over the centuries. Humanity has sought happiness, understanding of death, and knowledge of God; all of these are subjects of wisdom and the world seeks these things through various philosophies. This kind of worldly wisdom has only led to false religion. Dr. Lloyd-Jones elaborates on the failure of philosophy, and shows the listener that the world has come short of true knowledge of God for thousands of years. Yet, Christ has made God known. Though no one has seen God, Christ is the Son of God incarnate. Therefore, the Christian has access to knowledge of God and true wisdom. The believer knows God through His Word and Spirit because of the incarnated work of Christ. Humanity may, even now, know God. Jesus describes Himself as One who is greater than Solomon. The least in the Kingdom of Heaven has more wisdom on life and godliness than the greatest heathen philosopher, because true wisdom is revealed by the Holy Spirit in the Holy Scriptures. The believer should look no further than to the very written words of God in order to find wisdom.
The Beginning of Wisdom
How does one get wisdom? Can anyone be wise? In this sermon titled “The Beginning of Wisdom,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones teaches that God’s wisdom is a free gift for everyone, all they must do is humble themselves. Because Christianity gives an entirely new view of everything, humanity must let go of what they believed to be wisdom and trust in the Lord. Dr. Lloyd-Jones shares that humility begins with recognition that God in His infinite compassion has always planned for His people to receive redemption through the death of his Son. Proverbs tells that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. When the full scope and greatness of God’s plan for mankind is recognized, the only response ought to be fear and trembling. This is the beginning of wisdom, to recognize God’s plan with holy reverence and then trust Him in all things.
In the Image of God
From the beginning of history, humanity has sought out self-knowledge. They have sought it through philosophy, religion, and science, yet have found nothing of eternal value. In this sermon titled “In the Image of God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches from John 1:16 that God knows the deceitful heart of humanity. He shows that the truth about humanity is not found within themselves, but rather in the Creator God. Moreover, Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains that humans are a fallen race. The image of God has been distorted by sin and sin does not speak the truth about human purpose and nature. Sin convinces people that they are the ultimate authority; that they, like Adam, may decide what is right and wrong instead of submitting to the Creator. The truth about humanity is ultimately found in Christ who is the whole man; that is to say that He was perfect in His humanity. He submitted to His heavenly Father in every way that humans have not. Christ is not merely the full man, He is also the divine mediator and perfect sacrifice. What is the height of mankind? How can a sinful people see a holy God? Look no further than the Son of God incarnate.
This Worlds Wisdom Made Foolish
How does the wisdom of the world compare to the wisdom of God? Listen to “The World’s Wisdom Made Foolish” as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains how the world cannot understand Christ because what the world sees as wise, Christ says is folly. God’s ways are wholly opposed to this worldly wisdom. He uses the weak and the base to shame the false wisdom of the world. This is seen clearly in the incarnation and the birth of Christ. Jesus was not born in a palace or amongst royalty, but He was born in a manger amongst the poor and weak. In His ministry He confounded the wisdom of the world by teaching the lowly and humble. He lived and died a poor man with few possessions, but He revealed the true wisdom of God in His life in ministry. He amazed the scribes and the Pharisees with his wisdom and authority. In his weakness, God’s wisdom was manifested and in His humility, God’s power was displayed. From His birth in a lowly manger to His death on the cross, in Jesus the wisdom of God shamed the wisdom of the world. No Christian should be ashamed of Christ, for in Him is all wisdom and truth.