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.
- The reading is from Acts 24:1-23 which describes Paul's trial before Felix.
- Felix was the Roman governor of Judea. He was originally a slave but was freed and rose to power. He lived an unjust and lustful life.
- Drusilla was Felix's wife. She was a Jewess who married Felix against Jewish law and tradition.
- Paul was brought before Felix and Drusilla to defend himself against the charges of the Jews. Paul preached to them about righteousness, self-control, and the coming judgment.
- Righteousness means living according to God's moral law. The Ten Commandments summarize how to live righteously.
- Self-control or temperance means disciplining one's desires and impulses. One must control their bodily desires rather than be controlled by them.
- The coming judgment refers to God's final judgment of all people. All will stand before God and be judged for how they lived.
- Paul also preached to them about faith in Christ - that Jesus died for sinners and offers forgiveness and new life.
- Felix trembled at Paul's preaching but did not repent. He was hoping for a bribe and kept calling for Paul.
- People reject the gospel because they suppress the truth in unrighteousness. They go against their conscience and the Holy Spirit.
- The sinful life is degrading and despicable. People live for temporary pleasure rather than eternal joy. They desire the praise of men over God.
- The times call for a response - will you repent and believe or reject the gospel like Felix?
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.