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Sermon #1051

Strangers and Pilgrims

A Sermon on John 1:16


John 1:16 ESV KJV
For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. (ESV)

Sermon Description

What is the nature of sanctification? In this sermon on John 1:16 titled “Strangers and Pilgrims,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones tells that sanctification is essential to all Christians. It is not a result of legalism, but of living according to the gospel. The great truth is that Jesus died for sinners and that the Holy Spirit came into the world to give new life. Though all are born in sin, no one is beyond the grace and power of God. There is no sinner so dark that they cannot be made a child of God. As the gospel says, Christians flee worldliness and immorality because they are new creatures in Christ. Christians are called to flee sin and the flesh and to put to death all immorality not in order to be saved, but because they have been saved. There is no place for legalism in the Christian life, but it is the gospel that compels toward holiness. For those that sow in the flesh reap according to the flesh, but those that sow according to the Spirit reap according to the Spirit. The sermon asks: “what are you sowing? Are you trusting in God and in His gospel, or are you still trusting the flesh?” There is no more important question one can ask.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The sermon text is John 1:16 - "And of his fullness have all we received, and grace for grace." This verse summarizes the Christian gospel. Everything we have comes from Jesus Christ.

  2. Jesus Christ has an eternal fullness as the Word that was with God and is God. He came into the world to make this fullness available to us.

  3. We were estranged from God by nature and needed to be forgiven, reconciled, born again, and made sons of God. Jesus made this possible.

  4. A Christian is someone who has received from the fullness of Jesus Christ. No one can make themselves a Christian through good works.

  5. We are looking at how Jesus' fullness is applied to us. 1 Corinthians 1:30 says "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption." Jesus is everything to us.

  6. Jesus is made sanctification to us. Sanctification is the process of being delivered from sin and remade into the image of Jesus. It prepares us for heaven.

  7. We work out our sanctification, but God works in us to will and to do his good pleasure. The Holy Spirit enables us to understand God's word, helps us in prayer, and enables us to mortify the flesh.

  8. We must realize the life of sin is incompatible with the life in the Spirit. We were once in darkness but now in light. We can't mix them.

  9. To go back to sin contradicts what we believe and is a "living lie." We must think through the implications of our faith.

  10. 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 shows we have nothing in common with unbelievers. We must be separate from them.

  11. We grieve the Holy Spirit when we sin. We claim He lives in us, so we must not grieve Him.

  12. 1 Peter 2:11-12 tells us as strangers in this world to abstain from fleshly lusts that war against the soul.

  13. The end of sin is always death. We reap what we sow. Sin leads to corruption.

  14. Revelation 21:8, 27 and 22:15 warn that the unrighteous will be condemned. We must listen to these warnings.

  15. Romans 13:12-14 tells us to cast off the works of darkness, put on the armor of light, and make no provision for the flesh. We must starve the flesh.

  16. 1 Peter 4:1-5 tells us we have already spent enough time living in sin. We should live the rest of our time for God's will, not the lusts of men.

  17. Ephesians 5:11-16 tells us to have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness but rather expose them. We must walk carefully and make the most of our time.

  18. To walk in the Spirit means to walk with Christ, be led by the Spirit, fill our lives with spiritual things, read the Bible and good books, fellowship with other believers, pray, and meditate on God. This will overcome the flesh.

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.