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Sermon #5774

Assurance: To the Uncertain and to the Discouraged

A Sermon on Hebrews 4:14-16


Hebrews 4:14-16 ESV KJV
Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted …

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Sermon Description

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.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The epistle to the Hebrews was written to encourage discouraged Christians who were facing persecution and doubting their faith.
  2. The author's message is the preeminence of Jesus Christ. He alternates between teaching and warning.
  3. The two things necessary for Christians in this position are: hold fast your profession (believe correct doctrine) and come boldly to the throne of grace (pray). These must be taken together.
  4. Holding fast the profession means you must know correct doctrine about Jesus Christ. This includes His incarnation, deity, resurrection, ascension, and high priestly work.
  5. Coming boldly to the throne of grace means praying with confidence and assurance based on knowing Jesus is both God and man, and continues as our high priest.
  6. We can come boldly because Jesus offered Himself as the sacrifice for our sins, entered the heavenly Holy of Holies with His own blood, and continually intercedes for us.
  7. We must approach God with reverence but can come boldly to the throne of grace only through faith in Jesus Christ and His finished work.
  8. If God gave His Son to reconcile us as enemies, He will surely give us all things we need as His children. This is the logic and assurance of the Christian faith.

Itinerant Preaching

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.