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Sermon #5409

Characteristics of the Kingdom

A Sermon on John 3:1-7


John 3:1-7 ESV KJV
Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is …

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Sermon Description

What changes when someone is saved? In this sermon on John 3:1–7 titled “Characteristics of the Kingdom,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones unfolds the difference between those who know Christ and those who merely know about Him. True salvation is a change from death to life, darkness to light. It is to come out of the kingdom of darkness and to enter the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God cannot even be seen by those who are in sin and have a darkened mind. Only a supernatural act of divine grace applied by the Holy Spirit can possibly overcome the fallen nature of humanity and allow them to see God and Christ Jesus. This new orientation causes people to seek the kingdom of God and to continually battle against sin and unrighteousness. This is the truth of the gospel, that those who repent of their sins and believe in Jesus Christ are made inheritors of all the blessings of God. They are transferred from the kingdom of the devil into the kingdom of God, but those who reject this message of salvation by grace through faith in Christ remain in sin and condemnation.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The kingdom of God is the most important subject we can consider. It determines our eternal destiny.
  2. We looked at the danger of falsely assuming we are Christians last week. We must make sure we are truly in God's kingdom.
  3. Nicodemus was attracted to Jesus but did not understand why Jesus came or who he was. Many people have a view of Christianity that does not account for Jesus.
  4. The kingdom of God is absolutely different from everything else we have known. It is a separate realm marked off from other realms.
  5. The kingdom of God is God's kingdom, distinct from the kingdom of the world. The Bible discusses these two kingdoms.
  6. In the kingdom of God, God rules and is known. Citizens love God, glory in him, and love his law.
  7. The kingdom of God is characterized by righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. Citizens have transformed minds and lives.
  8. Entering the kingdom of God requires profound change because of the kingdom's nature and our own sinful nature.
  9. The kingdom of God is God's realm where he is loved, known, and obeyed. We are rebels against the kingdom and its King by nature.
  10. We have a sinful nature opposed to God's kingdom. We live for self, trust self, and have sinful desires. We need new natures.
  11. To enter God's kingdom, we must be born again - born of water (repentance) and the Spirit (a new nature). We must be reconciled to God and transformed.
  12. Repentance means acknowledging our sin, realizing we deserve nothing, and accepting God's salvation in Christ.
  13. Being born of the Spirit means receiving a new nature that loves God and righteousness instead of sin.
  14. We must ask God for repentance and new birth. He will not reject those who come to him.

The Book of John

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.