A Knowledge of God
What is one of the main reasons people give for rejecting the claims of Christ? In this sermon on Matthew 11:28 titled “A Knowledge of God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains that many claim that it is narrow and dogmatic to claim to have all the answers to life, particularly Christians who believe that the Bible is God’s word and that Jesus is the only Savior. The reason for not believing in Christianity is not ultimately born out of intellectual objections to Christianity, but it is a result of spiritual blindness. Because all are in sin and depravity, they are unable to judge the merits of Christianity in a rational and objective way. All those that oppose Christianity do so because of their sinful nature and spiritual blindness. This problem of sin cannot be overcome through clever argumentation and evidences, but ultimately only through the power of the gospel. There are no truly modern objections to Christianity, but only old ones in new forms. Christians should be encouraged that it is not their own intellect and rhetoric that convince unbelievers of the truth of Christianity, because it is ultimately God alone who, by His grace, changes the hearts and minds of men and women in order that they might believe in the gospel.
The glorious truth of the message of Christ is that people can know God and come into a relationship with Him. God has not created humanity and left them to themselves, but has revealed Himself. This revelation does not come through human reason, for Paul tells that the message of the gospel came to those that were not considered wise by the world. God has revealed Himself through Christ in grace. In this sermon on Luke 4:18–19 titled “Divine Knowledge,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on this truth that God can be known not because of human wisdom, but because God is gracious. It is because God so loved this sinful and evil world that He has sent His Son so that all who repent of their sins and believe in Jesus might be saved. This is not merely theoretical knowledge, but it is a knowledge of God and what He has done. How is one to respond to this revelation? The answer of this sermon from Scripture is that they must believe God. They must believe that Jesus Christ is God’s son who has come to die and take away the sin of the world.
Revealed By God
How can one know God? In this sermon on 1 Corinthians 2:1–16 titled “Revealed by God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains how this seemingly simple question has immense significance for one’s life. If God could not be known, how could anyone understand the gospel and be saved? Thankfully, God has revealed Himself to humanity. No one has to discover God through science or philosophy, but God made Himself known in Scripture and in Jesus Christ. In this sermon, Dr. Lloyd-Jones shows the great need for forgiveness and reconciliation with God. Science cannot give this knowledge because it only tells about this world. Christians then have nothing to fear from modern humanity and its claims of intellectual superiority, because true knowledge of God is a gift through His Word, not simply another truth to be discovered. The story of Nicodemus illustrates this well. The Lord Jesus says that it is the Spirit that shows God. It is a supernatural act of God that allows fallen sinners to come to a knowledge of a holy God. There is no more important truth than the gospel of salvation from sins.
The Knowledge of the Glory of God
What is the power of Christianity? The Bible is clear that it is not human wisdom or ingenuity, nor is it found in anything that people do. The power of the gospel is found in Jesus Christ alone. When Paul came to the Corinthians, he says that he came preaching Christ and Him crucified. By preaching in the power of Christ, the Christian shares the light of the knowledge of the glory of God and not their own efforts. When Christ is preached, Christians preach the only hope for this world because God can only be known through His Son. In this sermon on 2 Corinthians 4:1–6, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones tells of the great need for Christ, and that it is Christ alone who can make the world right. Jesus alone is the power of God to save sinners and bring them to God. This sermon forces the question: do I know God? Do I seek to glorify God above all things? For there is no greater need than to know God and to know that all sins are forgiven. This gospel is the only true and lasting hope in this world, and it is this hope that Jesus gives.
Blinded by the God of the Age
What Paul preached determined how he preached it: the nature of the gospel in the glory of God provides the power. Look at the biggest problem confronting humanity today in considering how Christ was treated on earth: why is the Son of God rejected? In this sermon on 2 Corinthians 4:3-4, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones addresses the vital urgency of proclaiming the message of the gospel and the various groups who have rejected Christ as the Messiah over the years. Both an able person and a fool are ignorant of the gospel and reject God. There is no new knowledge. “The gospel is revelation; it is not man’s straining to try and discover.” The world cannot know God by seeking; He must reveal Himself. If the God of this world has blinded people, the gospel is hid from the unbeliever. The gospel alone explains the state of this imperfect world today. Unbelief is always a result of prejudice, and a refusal to face the facts. Do not boast in ignorance and glory in shame. It is never clever to reject this message. There will be eternal punishment without relief. Be amazed by His glory — God in the flesh. Turn to the Lord, He alone gives sight.
A Knowledge of God
How can finite people know the infinite God? As Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones proclaims in this sermon on 2 Corinthians 5:18–19, there is no question more important to answer in this life or the next. Humanity was created to know their creator and to love Him, but because of sin and rebellion, they are alienated from God. Some say that the answer to this dilemma is to use reason to know God, as this has been the answer of the many wise people and philosophers over the ages. Others recommend mysticism where humans commune with God through religious practices and experiences. However, the biblical answer is found in the nature of God’s revelation as God spoke through the prophets and apostles in Scripture. This means that humans cannot rely on themselves to know God, but by looking to what God has said concerning Himself. There is no place for humanity’s autonomous reason or immediate religious experiences once they understand that God has made Himself known in Scripture and in His Son, Jesus Christ. God must be looked to not only for knowledge of Himself, but also to know Him as Savior and Lord.
A Full Assurance of Understanding
In this sermon on Colossians 2:1–3 titled “A Full Assurance of Understanding,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones focused on Paul encouraging and advising the church in Colossae. He explains that the church in Colossae was early in its development, and many of the members had not even met the apostle. And like many new believers, they were susceptible to corruption. Paul writes to the church that they may have the full riches of understanding Christ. Part of the reason new believers are so corruptible is because they don’t understand the full power of Christ. A common cult at the time was Gnosticism. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains that the cult’s teaching required multiple intermediaries between individuals and God. A fully-grown Christian knows this to be false, for Christ is the sole high priest who speaks on their behalf. Dr. Lloyd-Jones also points out that understanding Christ means to also understand His purpose for the world. Christ came to redeem the world and to bring His church to Himself. Without Christ at the center of one’s worldview, Dr. Lloyd-Jones concludes, the world is hopelessly unredeemable. However, in Christ, there is hope for the coming everlasting rule and love of the Lord.
The Age of Reason
As time has progressed and the world has become more secular, many charge that the gospel is useless, outdated, and has failed despite being given several centuries to flourish and establish itself. In this sermon on 2 Timothy 1:12 titled “The Age of Reason,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones answers some of the criticisms of the gospel and helps the listener understand how they can formulate a biblical answer that is intellectually and spiritually satisfying. The first difficulty is the definition of the gospel. While many different people will offer to have their own “version” of the gospel, Dr. Lloyd-Jones points to Scripture and reminds that Paul defined the gospel therein. Second, many feel that the gospel has failed. Yet Dr. Lloyd-Jones reminds that it has accomplished exactly what it was established to do: to reconcile people to God through faith in Jesus’s atoning sacrifice for their sins. Third, some object that the gospel is of no value because progress has left it far behind. Yet the struggles of people today are no different than they were in the first century — Scripture is still incredibly relevant. So what is the gospel? What is human authority? Does reason have limits? Listen as Dr. Lloyd-Jones answers these questions and points to why humans need divine revelation and why Scripture is the best answer to problems today.
The Battle for the Mind
Why does the Bible encourage sober-mindedness? Many are surprised that the Christian faith involves the mind at all, because they think that religion is inherently irrational. But in this sermon on the battle for the mind from 1 Peter 1:13, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows how God calls Christians to use their minds to know Him. Christians are called to purposely think about God and the world as they are in a battle for the mind. This is a different message than what the world often tells people in an irrational age of celebrity worship and cults of personality. The world can give no account for the human mind, because Scripture tells that all are slaves to sin and their minds are wholly darkened. The Christian can only think about and understand the world when they receive the grace of God and come to new life in Christ. This sermon issues the call to leave behind sin and turn to Jesus who alone can save and renew a relationship with God.
Be Not Confounded
Where can one find hope? In a life that is often filled with turmoil and conflict, there is no more important question. In this sermon on 1 Peter 2:6 titled “Be Not Confounded,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones looks at the great biblical truth that Jesus Christ is the hope. All those that trust in Him will never be confounded or put to shame. This is because in Christ they find an otherworldly hope, a hope that is greater than all the suffering and pain in this world. Jesus is better than the hopes that the world offers, whether it is modern science and medicine, or modern philosophy and politics. The hopes of this world are just like the world: sinful and passing away. But the gospel gives hope even when this world is full of sin and rejects Christ, for the hope of the gospel is the redemption of the body and the forgiveness of sins for all who believe. Where is one’s hope? This sermon asks this vital question, but more importantly, it tells of the greatest hope in this world, Jesus Christ.