What is the Christian’s hope in life? Is it that the world will get better through social change or that humanity will get better and better until all evil is eradicated? In this sermon titled “Christ the Only Hope,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on the apostle Paul’s great doctrine of the resurrection in 1 Corinthians. For Paul, the Christian hope is not found in any worldly change, but in the future and final salvation of the people of God. This final salvation includes the physical and bodily resurrection of all believers when they will be made just as Christ is. While this earthly body is passing away and slowly dying, God in His power is able to make all things new and whole once again. Even though many in modern times scorn the idea of heaven, the resurrection, and salvation, the holy Scriptures are clear that there will be a day when Jesus comes again to judge the living and the dead. All will rise from the dead. Those that believe in Jesus will go to live in the new heaven and the new earth, for it is only through faith in Jesus that anyone can be saved from sin and the wrath of God.
- The apostle Paul wrote 1 Corinthians to address confusion and false teaching in the Corinthian church. In particular, some were denying the resurrection of the dead.
- Paul argues that if there is no resurrection, then Jesus did not rise from the dead. If Jesus did not rise, then there is no gospel and Christians are still in their sins.
- Paul says that if our only hope is in this life, then Christians are most miserable. He gives several reasons for this:
- Jesus would only be a man, not the Son of God
- There would be no gospel or forgiveness of sins
- Paul would have no comfort in his sufferings and persecutions
- The teaching of Jesus alone does not reform the world or give hope
- But Christ has risen from the dead, and this gives assurance of a complete future salvation. Though Christians have the first fruits of salvation now, we await full salvation at the resurrection.
- The resurrection proves that Jesus conquered all enemies, including death. He now reigns at the right hand of God, building His kingdom by calling individuals to faith.
- Jesus will return to destroy His enemies, raise the dead, and usher in a perfect kingdom. There will be an end to history, sin, and suffering.
- We must ask whether we belong to Christ and will share in His resurrection and kingdom. We become Christ's by believing the gospel that Christ died for our sins, was buried, and rose again.
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.