A collection of 85 sermons that Martyn Lloyd-Jones preached between 1957 and 1980 at various churches and colleges; outside of his main ministry at Westminster Chapel.
The Church and Her Future
In this sermon on Acts 12:5 titled “The Church and Her Future,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones lays out a strategy for how the church can prevail during persecution. One of the most critical parts in this battle, he says, is to identify the character and power of the forces against the church. Dr. Lloyd-Jones encourages Christians that nervousness is behind the appearance of confidence of those opposed to the gospel. This nervousness is driven by their rebellion against God and awareness that God opposes sin. This is seen today, and it is also seen in how Christians were treated in the New Testament. The second strategy Dr. Lloyd-Jones alerts the listener to is the utilization of prayer. The early church employed this tactic early and often, and God rewarded their diligence. However, it is not enough to just petition God for things. Dr. Lloyd-Jones asks a serious question—“do we really believe in God’s power to accomplish that of which He is capable?” If so, Christians truly have nothing to fear. Wherever they are currently in their walk with Christ, this sermon will give hope and encouragement to stand one’s ground and trust the Lord while living in the midst of a hostile culture.
Why Do the Nations Rage ...?
In this sermon on Psalm 2:1 titled “Why Do the Nations Rage…?” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones tells how nothing else holds out hope in this modern world other than the message of Scripture. Look at the state and condition of the human race. Humankind is always restless, with a constant desire for peace and rest. They look at a raging storm in this age of people who are proud of their sin. Christians alone face the facts; nonbelievers are continually devising empty and futile schemes. Even attempts for peace do not succeed—look at history with the League of Nations and United Nations. People try to put their trust and confidence in politics, education, science, and philosophy. The state of the world today is simply “organized insanity.” Discover the deliberate rebellion that causes all of this. The law was not given to hold down. It is madness to believe in worldly theory and not believe in God. All are under the judgment of God and His wrath is upon sin. Rejoice that none are not left without a solution but should look at God’s free forgiveness.
By This Shall All Men Know ...
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preached this sermon titled “By This Shall All Men Know…” at the Evangelical Alliance Ministers’ Conference in 1969, stressing the importance of supplementing the reading of theology with that of history. He encouraged avoiding being abstractly academic without applying theological truths to daily life and to look at the “generals” in history to keep the “particulars” of theology realistic. Listen to what the Roman Catholics said about Protestantism. Who do the facts support? Learn about the denominational divisions of Christianity. If many are based merely on comprehension, are they justified or sinful? Learn of the factors that caused such divisions. Hear of the national churches that hindered the Protestant union and how spiritual elements were overwritten by political ones. Hear of the history of Calvin, Luther, Anabaptists, Presbyterians, and many others. Dr. Lloyd-Jones discusses episcopacy and tradition, essentials and non-essentials, and striving for Protestant union. He shares the significance of the Westminster Confession and other confessions of faith. Avoid the extremes of unrestrained laxity and egotistical rigor, define the differences between error and heresy, and heed the call to be charitable.
A Christian Looks at the Moon
The only hope for this world is that it is God’s world. In this sermon titled “A Christian Looks at the Moon,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones addresses the claim that Christians forsake thinking and reasoning. It is the Christian alone who thinks and Dr. Lloyd-Jones asks if one’s thoughts are controlled and governed by the teaching of the Bible, or the news and the media? Learn how to think deeply, examine truth, and draw conclusions that are not superficial. The Christian considers things, reasons, and then comes to profound conclusions concerning such. Stand amazed at God’s marvelous creation and understand the uniqueness of humanity. Learn of the problem and tragedy of humanity; in this marvelous universe, humanity is the greatest contradiction. How can people be such a brilliant success, yet the greatest failure? Dr. Lloyd-Jones describes the modern person as a technological success and moral failure. This modern person is governed more by lust and passion than truth and understanding. Come to the only hope that there is for the world today—a spiritual understanding of God’s great plan of redemption and salvation. Recount the one launching that came from heaven to earth by God Himself. The wise person is encapsulated in Christ. Christ alone will present His people holy and faultless before God.
The Dedication of the Temple
In this sermon on 1 Samuel 4:19-22, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones draws parallels between the state of the church today with the spiritual condition following the capture of the Ark of the Covenant by the Philistines that is recorded in the Old Testament. As with the tabernacle, the Doctor says, the vital factor in the life of the church is the presence of the glory of the Lord. The greatest danger to the church today could very well be that it is content with nice buildings that are missing God’s glory. But as in the Old Testament, both humanity’s contribution and God’s glory are vital in working together to bring a church to a state of flourishing. How can churches guard against this separation? Lloyd-Jones proposes that it all begins with a church being sensitive to the glory of the Lord, and then asks some haunting questions: is the church aware of the glory of the Lord? Where does it start? The answers to these questions, and the fervor with which the answers are applied, will play a large part in the shape the church takes over the next several decades. Listen as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on why the glory of the Lord is vital for a church to succeed.
The Power of Prayer
Prayer is vital to the Christian. So when this fails, everything else seems to go. Listen to this sermon on Hebrews 10:19-22 as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on the great fight man is engaged in. Look at the instruction Christ provided on the difficult task of prayer. Why is prayer difficult? Learn about the grandeur of entering into the presence of God. There can be no confidence in prayer until the accusing conscience is dealt with. Man's heart is polluted by sin, and he is desperately in need of a sincere heart. Look at the hope of Psalm 51 and passages in the New Testament that show the possibility of going before God in boldness! There is a new and living way – no longer bound to the temporality of priests who die. Find a firm foundation in the shed blood of the Son of God. Prayer is not merely psychology, it is God's way to walk in confidence before Him. There is a needed sincerity and purity of heart that is required. You must deal with your conscience. Christ was punished and He literally rose again. You cannot resist the devil without this doctrine. Deal with your one remaining problem and rejoice in the hope God has given.
Why this Present Suffering?
Is Scripture completely irrelevant? Listen to Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones looks at the contemporary answers found in Romans 8:18-23. The sufferings of this present time are the unchanging problems of mankind. Human suffering is always a result of sin. Science and philosophy cannot give man such hope in the face of humanity, but the Gospel of Christ can. Look at nature from the Bible's standpoint and find comfort on its terms. The greatest consolation in this present affliction is that this is God’s world. The ground was cursed for man’s sin and the world is under the wrath of God, but there is good news. The Christian Gospel is the only explanation and solution to the sufferings of the present time. Learn that every human's greatest need is to be reconciled to God and the only promised deliverer is Christ. A Christian is still subject to all the sufferings of this present world; but man has a new view of time, and sufferings, which are incomparable to the glory to come. Are you groaning with creation? Find out that you should be! Nothing can frustrate the plans of God. Cast yourself on His compassion and love; your sins have already been dealt with.
The Nature of the Christian Ministry
In this sermon on 2 Corinthians 4:5 titled “The Nature of the Christian Ministry,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones passionately proclaims the real character of the Christian preacher and the true Christian message. Look at the example of Paul. Why did Paul not preach himself? What makes someone or something a fit subject for preaching about? The task of the gospel is not easy, but it is clear. The Christian is preaching to a world that is outside. Learn about earthen vessels and the state of the condition of the natural person. The gospel of Christ is not only preaching on morality and conduct; the natural person is ignorant of the issue of their own soul. People were meant to be companions of God who communed with Him. Why is this not seen? The world is under the control of the devil. Learn how to fight the spiritual forces of evil in this world. Glory in the Trinity, in God through His creation, and in the Son who died and rose again. The Christian preacher ought to be one who is prepared to be nothing so that God can be everything.
What is the Task of The Church?
Why does your church exist? What is the job of it and your pastor? In this sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones seeks to teach from Scripture regarding the proper role of the church. Over the last several decades, many churches have taken on the world’s job of entertaining people. Yet, as Dr. Lloyd-Jones rightly points out, this is opposite of the church’s focus to bring people to a knowledge of the truth. Who is God, and who is man? What is wrong with man? These questions serve to quickly diagnose that we are in trouble and in need of a Savior, and this message, says Lloyd-Jones, is the reason churches exist. As Augustine said, “Our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Thee.” People in the world are wandering about, suffering under the effects of sin. They are often seeking to find lasting joy, peace, and forgiveness in created things that cannot satisfy. Yet, Jesus offers a remedy for all who come to Him in faith and accept His sacrifice for sins on their behalf. Why is it so urgently important, Lloyd-Jones asks, that churches exist to preach this? His answer is simple but pointed: people will stand before God and be judged when they die. The message of hope and forgiveness must be preached, and this is the function of the church.
Man is so tempted to put faith in his own abilities that prayer has often come as an afterthought. Learn about the concept of "prayer-backing" and the perversion of merely thinking man needs God's support. Listen as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones addresses this serious departure from what Scripture conveys as prayer. Look at the examples of Abraham, Isaiah, and Moses – all men of action, but moreso all men of great intercession. What is the greatest thing man can do at a time like this in history? Intercede before the throne of God! Are we to have greater zeal for denouncing sin or exalting the glory of God? Consider the example of Christ when He saw the state of the people – He was burdened for them. How ought we pray? Intercessory prayer is not mechanical, nor is it simple. Praying must always start with worshipping God, not presenting one's problem. Hear about Jeremiah's prayer as he reasoned and pleaded with God – even if those he was praying for were against him. Begin to see God’s larger plan of salvation. Pray and not faint; God is your only source of strength. Fall before Him and leave your petition at His throne.
Addressing a Pagan World
In this sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones looks at Paul's example of how the Christian church ought to address a pagan world. A world sunk in iniquity and on the verge of collapse needs the Christian message. Learn that Paul reasoned with these people. How should this Gospel be listened to? Man ought to tremble in some way under its message! The great theme is righteousness – on the the attributes of God Himself. Learn of this, "essential uprightness" – the opposite of anything perverted or weak. According to biblical teaching, not only is God righteous, but man was originally created to be righteous after God’s image. Learn of the vital relationship between righteousness, temperance, and the judgement to come. Man is a responsible being made in God's image, and God will hold him responsible in the end. No man does good – men love darkness rather than light. The Law damns everyone to Hell, but the Gospel declares faith in Christ can save! God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son to lay the iniquity of sinners on Him. Praise God! Why do people reject this message? Stop resisting the Spirit and fighting against God. Receive this new life and nature, and start living as a new creation.
Calvinism; Hyper-Calvinism and Arminianism
What is the responsibility of evangelism? In this sermon titled “Calvinism, Hyper-Calvinism, and Arminianism,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones distinguishes between the three from a biblical perspective in regards to evangelism. There is a great confusion today between mere activity and real spiritual work. People are always impressed by activity, but this is often carnal zeal and activism. What is “prayer-backing”? Do Calvinists need to be reminded of the responsibility of evangelism in ministry? What is the right motive for evangelism? Learn of the history of Calvinism and the over-correction that often results. Hyper-Calvinists press logic so far that they do not give the free offer of salvation to others. Hear of election, predestination, and human responsibility, and of the biblical truths that cannot be logically reconciled. God alone is responsible for salvation, while humanity alone is responsible for damnation. Listen as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones argues that a person ought to be a great Calvinist who preaches like an Arminian. Evangelism is the result of a great urge, not mere duty; it is an inevitable fruit, not something to be added. How did Christianity spread before the printing press? Look to God for help, rather than oneself; be filled with the glory of God, rather than statistics and organizations. Stand humbled before God.
Meeting Trials and Tribulations
Persecution of Christians is on the rise around the world and it’s not limited by geography or governmental laws. How can people of faith stand strong in the face of trials and tribulations? Is it better to ignore the issues, or face them head-on? The Apostle Paul acknowledges that instead of encountering fewer trials, Christians will have more tribulations than those who aren’t saved. Biblical trials and tribulations come from striving to live godly lives in a world that hates anything that resembles God's holiness. But yet, they are still called to rejoice. This can be hard to do, and Christians may struggle with finding joy while going through hard times. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones says that Christians, while talking about the joy and peace Jesus gives us, often respond to trials the same way the world does— with despair and anxiety. In this way, the Christian testimony does not line up with how they live their lives. In 1 Peter 3, the author challenges us to conquer this defeatist mindset, not by building up positive emotion, but rather by “girding up the loins” of the mind and by choosing to dwell on the greatness of salvation as shown in the biblical text. The Christian can often think too lightly about their salvation, but is encouraged to fight this and preach the gospel to themselves. God is the sovereign Father, and eternal inheritance in Him is guaranteed.
For Church and Minister
How should pastors view the church? How should a church view its pastor? In this sermon on 2 Corinthians 5:11 titled “For Church and Minister,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on the importance of both a church and its pastor, and how the two relate to each other. Dr. Lloyd-Jones begins by laying out three points centered around Paul’s letters to various congregations and his relationship with them. First, an unsupportive church can greatly hinder the pastor and his ministry, and be a source of major contention that makes it hard for the shepherd to do his work. Second, a good church can fill a vital role by encouraging its pastor. This, Dr. Lloyd-Jones says, is one of the easiest yet most valuable things a church can do. Finally, as Paul declared in the epistle, a church filled with people seeking the Lord and following the pastor’s instruction is the best testimony he can have. Dr. Lloyd-Jones spends the latter half of his sermon addressing the role of the pastor. Like an ambassador, pastors are appointed by God to their position to speak on His behalf to His people. They are the shepherd, and their responsibility is not just to be the “nice guy,” but rather, one who speaks the truth of God’s word. Listen as Dr. Lloyd-Jones expounds on these points and encourages pastors and churches to interact with each other in a way that pleases the Lord and reflects the relationship that Paul had with many of his congregations.
The Gospel in the Modern World
Does Christianity have a place in today’s modern world, or is it outdated and in need of being replaced by newer ideas? Many people think that Christianity, and especially many of its teachings, are irrelevant because they are from such a long time ago. In this sermon on Hebrews 12:27–29 titled “The Gospel in the Modern World,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones argues that the Christian faith is needed just as much now as it was then. People throughout history have thought that the world would get better with new technology, globalization, and other breakthroughs that would unite the world. However, these man-made solutions have failed to bring about the utopia that many hoped for. Massive empires that once dominated the world are now nothing. Science, philosophy, wealth, and politics have all failed to bring about the change that is desperately desired. Dr. Lloyd-Jones notes that this is due to human sinfulness. No one is perfect and nothing they build can be perfect. Thus, no one is capable of ultimately fixing the issues encountered in the world. The Bible alone gives an explanation for the state of the current world, and the Bible alone provides a basis of hope for the future. God’s kingdom is the only one that won’t change and that will last forever.
Why Do the Heathen Rage?
In this sermon on Psalm 2, you will learn that Scripture always speaks to the precise position in which we each find ourselves today. Realize first, that in and of ourselves, we can do nothing. We must pray to God that He might pour out His Spirit in a manner that it might be irresistible. Listen as Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains how the second Psalm describes our present position. Are you astonished at the state of the world? This is a state of organized insanity and confusion. “Pride of man and earthly glory, sword and crown betray its trust, what with care and trial he buildeth, tower and temple fall to dust.” In this modern world, we must go back and read the instructions from our Maker – otherwise, there is no hope. The cause of our troubles and unhappiness is due to man’s sin. This is not simply weakness in human nature, it is a willful act and hatred against God. God looks upon mankind in wrath as man opposes both His Law and love. Love manifested in the death of His own Son. God's final appeal is to be wise, serving Him with fear, and rejoicing with trembling. The modern man needs reverent preaching, not shallow entertainment. Look at God's offer of salvation!
What it Means to be a Christian
What is the single most important thing in life? In this sermon on 1 Peter 1:8 titled “What it Means to be a Christian,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones reminds the listener that the most fundamental part of everyone’s life is their relationship with Jesus. With so much false teaching being popularized today, many people misunderstand what it means to be a Christian. Some say they are followers of Jesus because they were baptized as infants, while others claim the name of Jesus because their parents were believers. However, in this sermon, Dr. Lloyd-Jones shows that a true relationship with Jesus has three basic characteristics. First, a Christian believes in Jesus— not just accepting historical facts about Him, but also believing in Him for salvation and submitting their life to following Jesus. Second, a true believer loves Jesus because Christians cannot believe in what He has done for them without being filled with love and thankfulness. Finally, Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches, a true Christian rejoices in Jesus and His victory over death. Listen to this sermon as Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches about what a thriving relationship with Jesus looks like and how anyone can have it today.
Assurance: Concerning the Word of God
In this sermon on 1 Peter 1:23 titled “Assurance: Concerning the Word of God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones talks about how one can be born again by an incorruptible seed. Look at the word of God that lives and abides forever. Scripture is not out of date but is the very Word of God, not mere opinion or prophesy of people. What is the origin of the universe, humanity, and the design of creation? Hear of the intelligence behind this marvelous creation and answer each of these questions by looking at the Bible. Education and money cannot end war. Humanity has rebelled against God and will never find peace and happiness apart from Him. God made people in His own image to live in a certain way. Scripture addresses people and their condition before God. The word of humans will always end, but God’s word will continue speaking forever. God is the ultimate judge for eternity and will examine all people, not on their knowledge of the evening news, but on their knowledge and glory of God. No one can be just without God. Look forward to glory everlasting, an incorruptible inheritance, reserved for His children in heaven.
Assurance: To Those Who are Slow to Believe
This sermon speaks to those who rush to treat their own condition and problems before even knowing the cause of them. In this sermon on Luke 24:13–35 titled “Assurance: To Those Who are Slow to Believe,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones teaches that the Bible contains such answers. Listeners are encouraged to look at the two men who lacked assurance, see a picture of discouragement, and be amazed at the visible transformation that can occur. One cannot feel sad without looking sad; everything about these men revealed their sadness, but they were missing the truth. Initial human diagnosis leaves people stuck in the depths of despair and discussing the past; observe Christ’s expert analysis and illumination of reality. People are fools because they don’t know how to think in a spiritual manner. See the example of Edwards and others. Realize the story of Christ doesn’t end at His death, but continues to His resurrection. No one’s story has to end in despair. Tradition is a wonderful thing, but traditionalism paralyzes. One cannot only believe some of Scripture without taking all of it. Christ is the conqueror, but He is also the sufferer. Embrace His promises of deliverance alongside His commands of obedience. The human heart burns for God, and all need Him.
Assurance: To the Uncertain and to the Discouraged
In this sermon on Hebrews 4:14–16 titled “Assurance: To the Uncertain and to the Discouraged,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones discusses the theme of the preeminence of God, the importance of doctrine, and two crucial prescriptions for the Christian. Christians are unhappy because they are not as certain about their salvation as they ought to be. People like psychology with a little biblical terminology, and feeling like they are good people. The gospel is not merely for comfort. Two things are deemed to be inseparable prescriptions for the Christian. First, hold fast to the confession of the faith. Second, come boldly before the throne. Orthodoxy is not enough. Vague feelings and prayer are not enough. Learn the fallacy of the common phrase: “Christianity is caught not taught.” The Christian is an intellectual who knows who he believes, what he believes, and why he believes it. Hear about the confessions and catechisms created by people of God—Christians need a defined faith on which to hold fast. What is the Christian faith about? Christianity is not just positive thinking and comfort. Look at the person and work of Christ—the resurrection, Christ as representative, High Priest, Son of God, and Son of Man. Christ can sympathize with His people. The throne of justice is also the throne of grace and must be approached with reverence.