133 sermons ranging across 15 of the books of the Old Testament, all preached at Westminster Chapel. Some were preached in short series, others were individual sermons.
A Son; Given for Us
What makes Christianity different from every other religion? In a day when mysticism and spiritism are rife, the question inevitably comes up. In this sermon on Isaiah 9:2 titled “A Son, Given for Us,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones looks at the prophecy where humanity is said to walk in darkness and disbelief. Modern humanity is no different from those ancient Israelites who had turned away from God and gone their own way. But God’s answer to this great act of rebellion is also the same. God has sent His Son to die upon the cross in the place of sinners who did not seek God or desire His mercy. Jesus Christ is God’s only appointed means of salvation. What makes Christianity different? The answer is Jesus. God has revealed His eternal purpose in His Son who was born as a servant in Bethlehem. This infant grew up and lived a perfect life and died upon the cross to save those that killed Him. This sermon forces all to ask the pointed question, “do I believe? Do I believe that God has sent His Son to die for me?” There is no more important question that one can ask because this question concerns the very soul. All must believe in Jesus Christ as Savior.
A Child is Born
The Christian sometimes doubts or forgets their experiences of God. In this sermon on Isaiah 9:6 titled “A Child is Born,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows that the reason for this doubting is because experiences are not meant to last. Instead of this, Christians must truly know the character of Jesus Christ. If they do this, they will never doubt their standing before God. Isaiah 9:6 teaches the true character of Christ. Isaiah describes Jesus as Mighty God, Wonderful Counselor, Prince of Peace, Everlasting Father. Dr. Lloyd-Jones unfolds these attributes to show what one must truly believe and place their hope in. Jesus washes away sin because humanity is unable for itself. Christ is available to counsel His people in every moment of need; He is the author of eternal life. If one doubts the goodness, reality, or importance of their Savior, reflect on the true character of Jesus Christ.
A Son is Born; a Son is Given
Can God and His promises be trusted? Christmas affirms that they can. In this sermon on Isaiah 9:6 titled “A Son is Born, a Son is Given,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones teaches in this text that Christians must think more highly of the gift of Christ they are given from the Father. A gift tells about the one who gives as well as the one who receives. When Christians consider the greatness of God giving His Son, they understand three things. First, they must make much of God and not only Christ; the giver is as great as the gift. Second, they must be in very great need if they are given so costly a gift. Finally, their response must be one of amazement, gratitude, and praise. God loves so much that He gave the greatest gift that could be given. Christians should hold fast to that when they struggle to trust God’s promises. Christmas is the guarantee that they can trust God’s goodness.
An Earthly King
Christians battle temptations and trials daily and can feel afflicted by the opinions of the world. In this sermon on 1 Samuel 12:12, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones compares Christians today to the Israelites found in this Scripture passage while teaching that it matters what Christians do in response to their situation. The Israelites did not respond correctly but rather they insisted on their own way. They wanted a king in order to be like the rest of the world. Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches that if the Christian feels afflicted in their current state, it is because they have forgotten the history of their salvation. Christian, do not forget the great privilege of being a child of the Lord. The Christian has direct access to their Creator, and have full forgiveness in Christ. They have a God who is not ashamed to call them His child. Do not succumb to the temptations of this world, but walk in gratitude for the gift of Christianity and the great privileges they have in Christ.
God and the Ideas of Man
In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve find themselves in a fearful, worried state. In this sermon on Genesis 3:1 titled “God and the Ideas of Man,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones considered how they arrived to this state. Often times Christians can find ourselves fearful and worried like Adam and Eve. This is because they, like them, ask the question, “Did God really say?” Christians have absolutely no reason to believe that God is not kind, but they still question His goodness when they are told to obey Him. This is what happened to Adam and Eve; they allowed themselves to question the intentions of the Lord. Dr. Lloyd-Jones encourages Christians to believe what has always been true of God: He is infinitely good, infinitely just, and infinitely holy. Give up foolish reason when questioning the goodness of God. Instead of asking, “did God say?” proclaim, “I believe what God has said and I believe it!”
The Message of the Bible
Why is it so important to understand the narrative of Scripture? In this sermon on Genesis 3:1 titled “The Message of the Bible,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on the great story of the Bible by looking at the fall of humanity into sin, and the death of Jesus—the only remedy of sin. The state of the world can only be accounted for in the story of the fall. When humanity sinned against God, the whole world fell into sin, and they became slaves of the devil. No other story can account for the sin and evil that is in the world. Only the word of God tells why the world is in the terrible state that it is, and God’s word alone gives the answer to all the world’s problems. The glorious truth of Scripture is that God has sent His only Son to overcome sin, Satan, and the fall. Jesus is the new man who has come to redeem the whole world. This is the story of the world: humanity sinned against God, but God has sent Jesus to make all things new. This sermon confronts all with the truth of God’s salvation in Christ and the need to repent.
They Were Naked
In the garden of Eden, humanity tried to recover from what was lost at the fall. Adam and Eve covered their nakedness with leaves and hid from God. Ever since, humanity has never ceased to run from God and cover the results of the fall with intellect, politics, and medicine, ignoring the reality that no politician or medicine can address the guilt-ridden conscience. In this sermon on Genesis 3:7–8 titled “They Were Naked,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones points out that humanity has been trying to ignore the reality of God and of guilt ever since the garden. He illustrates this idea by calling out to the individual conscience and showing that fear of death and a guilt-ridden life have a God-given conscience in common. Christians must fight the temptation to convince themselves that everything is just fine as it is but instead recognize that without a Savior, this whole world is upside down and their own soul is torn with sin and guilt. Listen and hear about the God who is both just and merciful. Dr. Lloyd-Jones encourages Christians not to cover over inadequacies with false hopes that cannot fix a guilt-stained conscience but to look to Christ who forgives sin and makes filthy consciences clean.
Where Art Thou?
No one is wise, clever, or powerful enough to escape the corruption of sin. In this sermon on Genesis 3:9 titled “Where Are Thou?” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones proclaims that the power of sin over the world can be seen in the garden when Adam and Eve rejected God’s commands, lived by their own desires, and plunged the world into disastrous sin. Ever since, people reject the truth of Christianity by claiming that it is irrational, intellectually inadequate, and foolish. In its sinful pride and arrogance, humanity seeks to judge God’s word using the intellect and mind. But according to Scripture, all are slaves to sin and are born wholly corrupt. Only by God’s grace can those born in Adam receive new eyes and a new mind to see and know God rightly. It is not up to humanity and its reasoning, but to God and His infinite grace that He grants to those whom He has given to Christ Jesus. This is the heart of the gospel that God promised to Adam and Eve when He said that the seed of the woman would crush the serpent once and for all. Christ was born of a woman and died upon the cross so that all who repent and believe upon His name will be saved and made inheritors of life everlasting.
Without the facts of biblical history there is no gospel. From a Christian perspective, this becomes most important in approaching the book of Genesis. While the first book of the Bible is full of historical facts, it is also much more than this. It is where the great biblical drama begins—the drama of what God is doing in salvation. In this sermon on Genesis 3:15 titled “True History?” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones calls the listener to see the big picture of the biblical message. He teaches literal historical facts but he also notes the beginning drama of deliverance as God pronounces a great conflict between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent. In order to understand secular history that is marked by sin, evil, war, pride, and hopelessness, people must come to grips with the biblical history of God initiating liberation of humanity from the bondage of Satan. Genesis 3:15 reminds that humanity’s problems run much deeper than morality or mere happiness. As Dr. Lloyd-Jones says in this compelling sermon, Genesis 3:15 recalls the utter helpless condition that only the cross of Christ can fix. Listen as he traces biblical history from the beginning to the end where Christ returns in glory and subdues the devil fully and finally.
The Fall of Man
What is at the root of all of humanity’s problems? In this sermon on the fall of man from Genesis 3:22–24 titled “Man Ate of the Fruit,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on the fall and the first transgression of Adam and Eve. He says the reason the first parents sinned is because they refused to acknowledge their own creature-hood and ignorance. They sought to become like God Himself. This is still the fundamental problem of sin and evil: people do not accept that they are God’s creatures and subject to his law. In their pride, people seek to understand and explain the world by their own reason and standards. This is utter folly because apart from God, no one can truly know themselves or the world. True understanding only comes when one accepts that they are not God, but His creatures. All must put their faith in God and in what He has done on the cross in Jesus Christ. Only by repenting and believing in Jesus Christ can one return to true fellowship with God and be freed from the curse of sin. This sermon calls all to ask, “do I believe? Have I forsaken any chance of understanding the world without Christ?” There is no more important question one can ask because it concerns not only their good in this life, but their eternal salvation.
God Must Punish Sin
The story of the flood as found in Genesis tells of something very important about who God is and who humanity is. In this sermon on Genesis 6:7–8 titled “God Must Punish Sin,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains that the justice of God will not tolerate sin and His holiness demands the punishment of evil. This is exactly what He did in sending the flood upon the whole earth, wiping out all the inhabitants for their iniquities. He spares only Noah and his family because Noah found favor with God. Furthermore, just as God judged the world in the time of Noah, He will also come again to judge the world and punish all evildoers who do not repent and believe in Christ Jesus. Despite this clear warning, many live as if God never judges the earth. Just as those in the time of Noah scoffed at the idea that God was going to flood the earth, so today many laugh at the belief that Christ Jesus will return and bring judgment on the last day. The Bible warns that God is just and holy, and because of sin the whole world lies under the condemnation of God. It is only by believing in the gospel that any will be saved.
Babel: the Tragedy of Man
What is wrong with the world today? Apart from the Bible, one can only speculate about the trouble humans find themselves in. However, with the Bible, one can know the cause of the broken world, as well as the solution. In the Bible, God works out His plan of salvation for His rebellious people. In this sermon on Genesis 11:1–32 titled “Babel” The Tragedy of Man,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches about the Tower of Babel with this theme of Scripture in mind. In this story, he sees the whole essence of the tragedy of humanity. They displayed great ingenuity in noticing the effect the sun had on clay and used that knowledge to make brick. The tragedy of humanity is that it uses its ingenuity to build a life apart from God. Their controlling ideas revolve around trade, pleasure, and security; thus, the city of Babel was built out of pride and self-sufficiency. The tower was built with brick so it would last forever, yet Dr. Lloyd-Jones notes the trace of humanity’s lurking fear in the building of Babel. There was a threat of being scattered because God abhors the thought of His creation building a life apart from Him. Indeed, God came down, destroyed Babel, and scattered the people.
The Seed of Abraham
In this sermon on Genesis 12:1–4 titled “The Seed of Abraham,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows how all humanity’s troubles throughout history have arisen from its rebellion against God. Before this pagan backdrop, the life of Abraham shines as an example of what it looks like to live a life of faith. The Lord called Abram out of his old way of life, offering him His friendship and untold blessing. Abram responded, leaving everything, and becoming a sojourner in this world. Do today’s Christians have the same confidence in the word of God? Abram’s world was exactly the same as today, and God requires the same response to His call—a call to repentance, seeing that the life one lives is against God, and doesn't have a foundation. There is a glorious type of life possible, not based on uncertainties or works, but a life based on the Son of God who gives peace with God. That was the offer made to Abram and it is the offer made to today. Come out of the old life and follow the call of God, through life and death, and even into the everlasting bliss of His kingdom.
It is God Who Acts
Christians must be careful not to turn to God only when they are disturbed by an experience or to satisfy curiosity. This is what Moses did at the burning bush, but God arrested Moses’s cares and attention. In this sermon from Exodus 3:3 titled “It is God Who Acts,” Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones addresses this fatally casual approach to God. He states how often Christians address God out of exhaustion or need. He corrects this by saying that Christians must always begin with God as He is the root of all things. What a transformation would take place if Christians applied God to their experience rather than appealing their experiences to God. Indeed, Dr. Lloyd-Jones shows that the main business of Christianity is Christ’s death on the cross that brings His people face to face with God. God is so pure that He cannot look upon sin, but because of salvation the Christian can enter His presence. Not only this, but God’s plan for salvation is certain, as seen in this passage. He sees the Christian’s sorrows and acts as He did for the Israelites. Dr. Lloyd-Jones encourages turning to God in full attention as His purposes are good and He has cared for the greatest need so that His people might dwell in His presence rather than address Him only when they must.
A Living God
Blaise Pascal once said, “God is not the God of the philosophers.” In this sermon on Exodus 3:6 titled “A Living God,” Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones expounds on how dangerous this statement is. The philosophers deal in the abstract, but Christians have a God that is real and can be known personally. When God described himself to Moses as I AM in Exodus 3:6, He was showing Himself as the familiar and intimate God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Dr. Lloyd-Jones shows in this sermon that this God is a God of compassion and faithfulness throughout the ages. This is the God who sees the sorrows and looks upon Christians as a father pities His children and then works His good purposes for them. He remains who He has always been: the God who was in covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and He acts out of compassion on the Christian’s behalf.
The Message of the Bible Today
Humans are unable to live in right relationship with one another because they are not in right relationship with God. In this sermon from Exodus 20:1–26 titled “The Message of the Bible Today,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows that at every opportunity throughout Scripture, humanity failed to dwell in obedience to God. Adam, Noah, Abraham—they all failed. Even when God gave the Israelites the Ten Commandments, they were unable to live in obedience. Scripture highlights God’s holiness and the depravity of sin in humanity with the sole purpose of turning people’s eyes to Jesus Christ. The greatest need is to live in right relationship with God and this is accomplished because sins were punished in Christ. Dr. Lloyd-Jones asks, “has the law of God brought you to Christ?” When one considers the state of humanity and their inability to live in obedience, Dr. Lloyd-Jones encourages turning to the character of God and the gift of His Son.
The Message of the Tabernacle
Christians often wonder why their prayers are not answered? In this sermon on the Tabernacle from Exodus 24:12 titled “The Message of the Tabernacle,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones proposes that perhaps prayers are not answered because the Christian does not approach God rightly. When they approach God, they cannot disregard the reason why they are able to approach Him. Rather than rushing to God with one’s needs, Christians should remember that God’s Son was given as a sacrifice for their sin that they might dwell in God’s presence. In this passage, Dr. Lloyd-Jones considers the significance of the tabernacle for the Israelites. The glorious message that comes with the tabernacle in the Old Testament is that God desires to dwell with His people. In the New Testament, Jesus’s death shows God’s desire to dwell with His people forever.
The Essence of True Religion
Why is the church in such a dire situation? In this sermon on 1 Samuel 4:22 titled “The Essence of True Religion,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones tells that it is because the church in modern times has lost a sense of God’s presence. Just as in ancient Israel, the glory of the Lord departed when they turned away from God and sinned against Him, so in modern times something similar has taken place in the church. The people of God are no longer aware or sensitive to His presence. What is the answer to this great dilemma? Only by returning to God and by seeking His face can the church become faithful and able to fulfill its mission of preaching the gospel. Christians must reject all forms of materialistic religion that is devoid of true love for God and His word. The church should not try to attract unbelievers by appealing to their fleshly desires and unregenerate minds, but they must pursue true spiritual religion that is focused on God’s word and His glory. What does this sermon mean for the lives of ordinary believers? It is a call for all Christians to seek God according to true religion. It is a call for Christians to seek the presence of God anew in every generation.
The Condition of Man
Why is the Bible relevant to modern humanity? In this sermon from Numbers 11:4–6 titled “The Condition of Man,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones answers this very question by reminding the listener that the moral problems of society are nothing new and are really problems of humanity in general. The many efforts of humanity to fix and diagnose their own problems are all in vain and misplaced. Scripture not only tells what the problem is, but also the answer. Humanity is fundamentally fallen and therefore evil. According to the Bible, people have rebelled against God and rejected His law and rule. The answer is not more moralizing, but it is the gospel. The answer to the deepest moral dilemmas is in the fact that God has sent His own Son to die for sins. God made a way for sinners to be redeemed and reconciled to Him. This new life changes hearts and minds so that men and women now desire what is true and godly. What does this sermon mean for humanity? It is the declaration that sin and depravity can only be overcome by the gospel. This sermon also tells of Jesus Christ who is the only Savior that God granted to the world.
The Mind of Man
How has sin affected humanity and their reasoning? Many scorn the ideas of God, Jesus, and the need for salvation and say that no rational person can possibly be a Christian. In this sermon on Numbers 11:4–6 titled “The Mind of Man,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones shows that Scripture has a very different idea of what it means to be reasonable. After the people of Israel are set free from bondage in Egypt, they quickly begin complaining that they do not have the food and comfort that they had while they were slaves. This is wholly irrational, but it serves to show that humans are fallen, and sin has affected minds and hearts. It is rational to believe that God has sent Jesus into the world and died, but people are blinded to this truth until God graciously opens the eyes to see Him and believe Him. Humanity’s essential problem is that they are fallen and blinded by sin and immorality. Fallen people are slaves to sin until Jesus Christ overcomes the sinful heart and makes them new.