Well, we’re moving this morning still deeper into Romans 10. We’ll read through the first 13 verses as we try to lay a bit of a contextual foundation here for what we want to look at. Primarily, this morning, I am going to be taken up with the first half of verse 9. And you’ll see as we come into it, what that’s all about.
Verse 1 Chapter 10. Romans. “Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them (that’s the Jews) is that they may be saved. I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For being ignorant of the righteousness that comes from God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. For Moses writes about the righteousness that’s based on the law, that the person who does the commandments shall live by them. But the righteousness based on faith, (you see his comparison… he’s comparing righteousness based on the law with righteousness based on faith) Verse 6, he says, “but the righteousness based on faith says, ‘do not say in your heart who will ascend into heaven?’ That is, to bring Christ down. Or who will ascend into the abyss? That is to bring Christ up from the dead.”
Now if you weren’t here last week, we looked back at Deuteronomy 30 where this came from. The interesting thing is, Moses is speaking about the commandment. He’s speaking about the Law. What Paul does is everywhere Moses speaks about the commandment, he takes it out and he puts in “Christ.” What he’s doing is he’s showing us that the righteousness based on the law speaks law. It speaks commandment. But he’s taking Moses’ own words, he’s stripping it of Law and commandment, and he’s putting Christ in. And he’s saying, the righteousness that is based by faith doesn’t speak like Moses anymore. It speaks, you remember, the law came through Moses; grace and truth, they come from Christ. The speech of the righteousness which is by faith speaks different than Moses spoke. So if you wonder, what are all these words about the abyss and about heaven? Well, it’s simply the words that Moses used in Deuteronomy 30, and Paul uses them to his purposes to apply to Christ, and he’s saying it’s near us. You don’t have to go to heaven, You don’t have to go into the abyss. It’s right here. And as verse 8 says, What does it say? “The word is near you. In your mouth, in your heart.” Again, Moses was speaking about the law that you had to do. Paul is tearing that out of it, and he’s saying, that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m not talking about a law you do. I’m talking about a word of faith; a word you believe. That we’re proclaiming. Verse 9, “Because if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord…” That’s what I want to deal with today: confessing with your mouth that Jesus is Lord. “…and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes, and is justified; with the mouth, one confesses, and is saved. For the Scripture says everyone who believes in Him will not be put to shame. For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek. The same Lord is Lord of all. Bestowing the riches on all who call on Him. For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Now, what Paul is explaining here… I know, we’ve got some people in here today. We’ve got some visitors. Maybe you’re not familiar with this concept. I want to bring you up to speed real fast. There’s a reason that so many Gentiles are being saved; why most Jews are not. This is Paul’s theme that he started back in Romans 9. He’s answering the question. Because as we look, we say, hey, why are the churches mainly filled with Gentiles? When the Jews were God’s people in the Old Testament. Why is that? How can that be? And Paul doesn’t say, well, you’re wrong if you think that’s how it is. He says, no, you’re absolutely right. There aren’t many Jews being saved. Mostly it’s Gentiles that are filling the church. And he says, there’s reasons for that. In Romans 9, he says it has to do with the purpose of God according to election. But here, at the very end, the last four verses in Romans 9, and how all the way through these first , he’s leading us to another reason. Not election anymore. Now he wants us to look at something else. Look, no matter who we’re talking about, whether it’s Jew and Gentiles, you and me, the guy down the street – it doesn’t matter. There’s always a reason why some are being saved, and others are not. In Romans 9:30, Gentiles attaining righteousness – a righteousness that is by faith. Romans 9:31 shows the Jews they’re trying to get righteousness in other ways. It’s not by faith. Not by faith in Christ. It’s rather by keeping the Law. They were determined to be good enough by their own efforts. They stumbled over the stumbling stone, you see that in verse 32. That stone is Christ. Look, this is what was happening. The Gentiles, they’re finding some street preaching guy by the name of Barnabas or Paul or Silas or Timothy – whatever. And they hear this guy, and Christ is being set forth, He’s being proclaimed to them. They say, “Yes!” I want that! We believe that! And they attain to the one and only righteousness by which men can be accepted by God. Christ is proclaimed on the other hand to the Jews, Paul – wherever he went, he’d go into those synagogues, most of them are saying, “No thanks. We have a Law.” “We’re going to keep our law.” So the Gentiles attained by faith righteousness. What does that mean? Very quickly. To attain righteousness means this: The very moment, I mean the exact instant – now catch these two words, the moment someone truly and biblically believes in Jesus Christ, at that very moment, their sins are gone. Forgiven. They’re washed away. They’re declared 100% absolutely righteous in the sight of God. Look, do you know what that means? That means that if you came in here today, you know you’re not a Christian. You’re filthy, you’re vile, you’re full of sin. You’re guilty of more wickedness than you can even remember. This is what this means. You don’t have to go on this agenda to start cleaning up your life. You don’t have to come to this church for five years before you can ever get right with God. What this means is you can believe on the risen Lord Jesus Christ this very hour. And the moment you do, something absolutely tremendously wonderful happens. You deserve suffering and death and wrath and hell for your sins; but the moment you believe in the Lord Jesus, all your sins are washed away that instant. By the blood of Jesus Christ. And then, God looks at you as though you have never sinned. And in fact, as though you have only and always kept His Law perfectly. Not because of a single bit of law keeping on your part. Not because you tried to clean up your life. Not because you own a Bible. Not because you came to this church for five years. You say what do I have to do? Obviously to become a religious person. To become somebody right with God, I’ve got to go through all this stuff. I’ve got to start doing good. That’s not what the Scriptures teach. Perfectly righteous. In a moment. You can be the most ungodly sinister wretch that’s ever come through that door. You can be sitting there with a guilty conscience in all your shame and disgrace, and in a moment, if you will look to the risen Lord Jesus Christ, in faith, in that moment, you can attain righteousness. How? By believing the truth God has revealed to us about His Son. And that’s what I want us to look at today. What must we believe in order to be saved? And this won’t be only important for us as far as what we proclaim in our Gospel message. This will hit home with us. This has to do with a test of our own professions as well. You see, folks, mark this: Christian faith. True faith. True, saving, Christian faith has specific content. It matters what we believe. It’s not enough for somebody to simply say, Oh yeah, I believe. You believe what? I believe there’s a God. Well, that’s nice. The devils believe that. Where’s that got you to? True saving faith has very specific content. We need to ask people, what do you believe? We need to be concerned about what people believe. Listen to this, the Bible backs me up on this, we’re going to see this in just a second. There is no salvation; you cannot be saved, unless you are clear about who Jesus Christ is. The Gentiles were finding salvation for this simple reason: They were clear about who Christ was. They saw Him to be Lord of all. They believed God has raised Him from the dead. They saw Him as He was. You can see Paul’s very thinking about this in verse 9. What does the heart do with Christ? That’s what Paul’s concerned about. What does your heart do with Him? It believes. What does the mouth do with Christ? It confesses. That’s what hearts and mouths are for. Hearts believe. Mouths confess what the heart believes. And the pathway to salvation that opens the door wide to the Gentiles is that they believed in the heart what is true about Christ and then confessed with the mouth what the heart believes. That’s what was happening, clearly. If you guys do a quick litte study here, you’ll see what? Romans 9:30 – what happens there? Gentiles attaining a righteousness. How are they attaining it? By faith. Verse 32, the Jews did not attain it. Why? What does verse 32 say? They did not seek it by faith. You get down to verse 33. It says somebody there’s not going to be put to shame. Who is it? Believers. You get down to 10:4, and who is it that Christ is the end of the Law for? Everyone who believes. You get down to verse 6. What is it that’s speaking there? A righteousness which is according to faith. You get down to verse 8, and what is it that Paul’s speaking? Is he speaking Law? Is he speaking things to do? He’s speaking a word of what? Faith. It’s something that must be believed. It’s all about faith. Unless you believe certain truths concerning Jesus Christ, you cannot be saved. Listen, yes Paul says, if you believe in Him, you won’t be put to shame. He says that. But to believe in Him. What is that? Do you guys know what the word “abstract” is? Non-definable. Sort of foggy, fuzzy feeling. Look. Faith in Jesus Christ means something. A lot of people say, well, I had this feeling. No, that’s not what we’re talking about. In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul is not all indistinct, uncertain, “Well, it doesn’t really matter…” This foggy thing – no real detail, no pinpointed truth to believe. He doesn’t do that at all. He’s very specific. He says, this is the Christ who died. This is the Christ who was buried. This is the Christ who on the third day was risen. The Gospel is about a distinct and a certain Christ. Whoever believes in this certain Christ labeled in the Scriptures is saved. There are fixed certainties. Concrete, actual, objective realities about Christ. That your faith and my faith must lay hold of, to believe in Christ is to believe very specific, hard facts about Him. You can’t say you believe in someone, unless there is something you expressively believe about him. That’s everywhere true. We’ve got people running all over the place who say, “yeah, I believe in Jesus.” Ask a Jehovah’s Witness if they believe in Jesus. Certainly they do. Often what people mean by it, is no more than they acknowledge that a guy by the name of Jesus did actually live about 2,000 years ago. He’s a true, historical, real person. Muslims believe that. Mormons believe that. JW’s believe that. All these lost Jews we’ve been reading about, they believed Jesus was a real person. They knew it. For the most part, all these folks are willing to admit that Jesus was a true, historical figure. Oh, but let’s begin to define this real, historial Jesus – who He is, and then you find, none of these folks are talking about the same Jesus that we find defined in the pages of Scripture. By the time Paul gets to Romans 10:9, he says enough. Enough about speaking vaguely about believing in Him. Let me tell you about Him who you must confess and believe in. And you look there at verse 9. “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” If you don’t believe this, you will not be saved. Do you see that? This is a serious matter. Those last three words ought to catch your attention. You will be saved. This is something that is on the caliber of whether or not you have eternal life. Paul doesn’t say, well, because you’ve looked at this effeminate looking picture of a long-haired, weepy-eyed Jesus on the wall somewhere, and you say, yeah, I believe that’s a picture of a real person. That’s not what saves you. What saves is seeing Christ – what does Paul say? Seeing Christ in all His powerful majesty, as the Lord of Glory ruling, reigning, sovereign, able and willing to rescue any poor sinner who calls upon Him for help. Having paid for sin, defeated death, busted the grave wide open, now living and reigning victoriously. That is the Christ you must believe in if you would be saved. He is Lord. He is. When the Philippian jailer cries out in Acts 16:30, “What must I do to be saved?” Paul and Silas didn’t say, “Well, pray a little prayer. Accept this long-haired, weepy-eyed, effeminate Jesus into your heart.” You know what? They spoke these timeless truths. Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved. In 2 Corinthians 4:5 Paul says, “For what we proclaim…” Paul, what are you proclaiming? He’s going to tell us. He didn’t proclaim that we need to go all around the world and show our little Jesus movie. That’s not what he’s proclaiming. He’s not proclaiming that you’ve got this impotent Jesus at the door, and he’s knocking and he’s helpless and can’t do anything, and he’s weak and he’s pathetic, and you better open the door and let him in or he can’t do anything. That’s not what he’s proclaiming. What’s he proclaiming? He says it’s not ourselves. It’s not our own imaginations. It’s not our conjurings. That’s not what we’re doing. We’re not proclaiming ourselves. We’re not proclaiming our own little message. We’re not proclaiming our own little deal. He says this, “We proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord.” When John sees the living Christ in Revelation 19, I’ll guarantee you what he saw, shook him to the core, just like what Isaiah saw in Isaiah 6. This was no pushover. No pathetic weakling. He saw the very embodiment of power and authority and mighty majesty. Just listen to how John describes what he sees. Revelation 19:11 “Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True. And in righteousness, He judges and makes war.” This is the Christ who makes war. And wins. “His eyes are like a flame of fire. And on His head are many diadems. And He has a name written, that no one knows but Himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood.” His own blood, no doubt. Or possibly the blood of those He’s slaughtering in His conquest. “And the name by which He is called is the Word of God. And the armies of heaven arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following Him on white horses. From His mouth comes a sharp sword, with which to strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God, the Almighty. On His robe and on His thigh He has a name written.” There’s nothing in this name that is pathetic or weak. “King of Kings, and Lord of Lords.” This is not the dead Christ of the Catholics. This isn’t some lesser prophet of Islam. This is the Almighty Lord of Lords, and you must bow your heart to, I must bow my heart to if we would be saved. It is at the name of this Jesus that every knee shall bow, whether you believe on Him and bow to Him in this life or not, the day is coming when every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Maybe you don’t bend to Him now. Maybe you’re in rebellion against Him now. Maybe you hate His people now. You hate His message now. You hate Him now. But I’m telling you one day, you will bow to Him. You may not acknowledge Him as Lord now. You may say, I’m going to run my life, I’m going to rule my life. I’m going to do my thing. I don’t want to be told what to do. But in that day, you will bend the knee to Him. And you will know He’s Lord. And when they come to command those angels to cast you away, they will obey Him. They obey their Master all the time. And you will go in that lake of fire. But if you bend the knee now… Oh, you’ll find Him a gracious Master. His burden is not heavy. He’s kind and He’s good. But He is Lord. And oh, it’s a fearful thing to resist Him. But to submit to Him, you find Him – Not one of us that have submitted to Him have ever found Him to be a hard taskmaster. He is the greatest Lord. It says Pilgrim in Pilgrim’s Progress, when he’s confronted by Apollyon, he actually liked the service of this Lord. And so do we who have had taste of it. Every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father. Now listen to me very carefully, if the Jesus that you believe in or the one that you have a notion of, or the one you heard about, and this is your concept of, if that Jesus falls short of being Lord of all, Lord of Glory, Lord of Lords, maybe more importantly, falls short of being Lord of you… then your faith is in another Jesus. Not the true one. And you cannot be saved. Hear me out on this. This happens far more than many realize. Most men love to construct in their minds an image of a Jesus that is impotent. Men love to see Christ as a baby in a manger, but stop right there. No more than that. Put the brakes on. He’s harmless enough there. Little baby. Don’t have to deal with it. But I’ll tell you what, you remember something, when those angels came to those shepherds out in the field, they said, “Unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Savior. It is Christ the Lord.” Even as a baby, He is the Lord. Oh, how men love to imagine Christ frail, weak, harmless, pathetic. Men love a Jesus like this. He’s no threat to them. The problem is a Jesus like this can’t save. And the devil is more than happy to give us a Jesus like that. Listen to the Apostle Paul: He says to the Corinthians in 2 Cor 11:3-4, I’m afraid that as the serpent (that’s the devil), just as the devil deceived Eve by his cunning, I’m concerned, I’m afraid, that your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ. What’s he mean there? Well, he gives some explanation. For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, you put up with it readily. Folks, not everyone talking about Jesus is talking about the true Jesus. Paul says, the one we proclaim to you, that’s the true one. Others are coming who are proclaiming one who is not true. Here’s Paul’s fear. He fears the serpent, the devil. He fears that just in the same way as Eve was deceived and led astray to her death, so Paul fears lest we be led astray by one of the devil’s people coming and proclaiming another Jesus. Another one. Not the true one. But another one. How often the other Jesus is proclaimed by Satan’s emissaries this way: “Well, he’s a savior. He doesn’t demand anything of you. Just believe. Just believe. Just believe. We wouldn’t want to say that you have to repent, or that you have to turn and be like a little child, or you have to submit. None of that. If we say that, that’s adding works to salvation.” Oh, it sounds good, but it is a deceptive slant on the true Gospel. It comes being spoken by the serpent’s slithery voice. Anytime someone comes along and says that you can take Christ as Savior, but not as Lord, it is the foul breath of that serpent, guaranteed. Folks, this happens often. Listen, Jesus knew the deceiver. He knew the tempter well. Here’s how He describes him. Well, you know what, let me say this… This seems to come up again and again and again. What does Jesus as Lord demand of us? Is it just belief? Is that stated anywhere? Oh, I know Luther liked to write, “faith sola.” In fact, that’s the way it is in the German Bible. Are we saved by faith alone? I think if we know our Bibles well enough, we’d have to say yes. Right? Looking outside of myself, finding my total help in Christ is exactly how a sinner, helpless, wretched is saved. But what the Bible does over and over and over again, is asserts that true faith, which does save, which is only a looking and trusting in Christ, it’s always attended by things. True saving faith is identifiable. It’s recognizable. Think about it, Paul’s speaking to Titus, said things like this, They profess to know God. Ok, so they say they believe in God. But what did they do? They denied Him by their works. Isn’t that interesting that if somebody says I believe in God, yet at the same time, they can deny Him. What does that mean? That means they’re not trusting Him. They just denied Him. Christ says things about “if you deny Me, I will deny you.” We’re talking: not saved. This isn’t some kind of Christian denial. This is proving that whatever they said they had, it’s not true. Beloved, this is why texts like 1 John 2:3-4 are everywhere in our Bibles. What do they say? It says this: “By this we know that we have come to know Him.” What does that mean? Know Him. That means true faith. Know Him. I realize that’s relational. But the fact is, you never enter into that relationship, that saving relationship with God, unless there’s true faith. If I say I have true faith, and I say I know Him, and I say that by that true faith, that I have come to a real saving knowledge of Him. John says, by this we can know… By this we can test our faith, if we keep His commandments. Now, that has everything to do with His Lordship. Everything. If we say we know Him, but we’re not keeping these commandments, it says we’re a liar and the truth is not in us. Here’s the thing, those who are masters, those who are in charge, they give commandments, and they expect them to be followed by the ones that are subordinate to them. Jesus gives commandments. He says, it validates whether you truly know God or not. Jesus Christ said, “If you love Me, you’ll keep My commandments.” It validates whether your love for Christ is true or not. Now this is the Lord. I had some guy, I was pressing some guy with this recently, because there was a certain gentleman who we were both talking about, that had lived in masturbation and pornography for the last 13 years. And I said, this guy is in the grips of the power of sin. You have no right telling him he’s a Christian. You have no business doing that. Whatsover. And the guy pressing me on the issue said, “Well, what percentage of the time do we have to obey His commandments?” I said, look, you are walking on dangerous ground. I said I am not talking perfection here. But what you’re not doing is taking God’s Word for what it says. I’ll tell you this, the life of the Christian is radically different. The Scripture says this, that as a lost person, our righteous deeds are filthy rags. The Scripture says there’s none that does righteouss, not one. When we’re lost, it’s not just a matter of whether we ever sinned or not; or sinned occasionally, or some of the time. What the Bible describes is the lost man sins all the time. What the Bible teaches us, is that when we truly come to Christ, when we come to the Lord, what the Lord does, is He graciously gives us the ability to bow to Christ. That’s what the New Covenant is. We sang it on Wednesday night. We were singing the New Covenant, what, from Ezekiel 36? He says, He’s going to write those laws those commandments on our heart, and He’s going to cause us to keep them. And John says they’re not grievous. This is the glory of the Gospel! It’s not that we find ourselves moved under this mean, harsh, taskmaster. It’s that suddenly, my heart has been opened up. I hunger, I thirst after righteousness. I don’t keep it perfect all the time. It grieves me. But even when I tend to fall, and even when my heart may grow calloused towards the Lord, and I may shrug off something. He so kindly and graciously comes back to me over and over and over again, and breaks me and makes me resigned. Oh, if there’s ever anything that brings peace and joy to the Christian, it’s when they feel total resignation to Christ. No agenda of their own. Just, Lord. And He alone can bring the sinner to a place where we just joyfully say, “Oh, Lord, we love Your ways.” “They’re good. They’re righteous.” “We see. We want to be led by You.” “We want that.” “Lord, we hate when we’re self-willed.” “We hate it!” “Lord, deliver us from such things.” But I’ll tell you what, Satan’s right there all the time. “No. That’s not required.” “That’s not part of it.” I’ll tell you what, if there was some psychopathic killer in a room with your child and he had a butcher knife in his hand, you’d be terrified. You’d be concerned. Well, let me tell you about the greatest psychopathic killer on the face of this earth. It’s the devil. And I’ll tell you what his meat cleaver is… it’s another Christ. He butchers men with it. He means to murder. He means to kill. Christ described this killer in John 8:44. He says this, “He was a murderer from the beginning.” Who did he murder? Adam and Eve. And how did he do it? He says, “He has nothing to do with the truth, because there’s no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” Don’t you dare think that when somebody comes through the doors of this church, or when you meet them out there supposedly from another church when we’re doing evangelism, you cross paths with them, and they’re speaking of a Christ who you don’t have to bow down to and submit to. Who basically will save any sinner and then let them go on and live their life however. Anybody that comes along like that, speaks that way, you better deal with it as serious, because another Jesus kills. And I’ll tell you what, that Satan as he prowls about like a roaring lion. He’s seeking someone to devour. How does he devour? He does it through deception. Why do you think that when we think about Islam, we think about Catholicism, we think about Buddhism, Hinduism, the cults… why is it that it’s always Christ that’s attacked? For that very reason. These religions are satanic deceptions. Christ is Lord. And I’ll tell you what, when you see these things in false religions, what you see is Christ being slandered by the devil, and you see the devil murdering the multitudes. And if that doesn’t stir your heart to take the true Christ out… He’s not a subordinate prophet underneath Muhammad. He is Lord of Lords. He’s not dead, pathetic on a crucifix. He is alive and raised from the dead, and He is Lord of the living and the dead. Lord of all. This is the Christ we must set forth. Now listen, we need some definition here. Lord. What does that mean? Kurios in the Greek. It’s the idea of master. It’s the idea of owner. It’s the idea of one to whom other people owe allegiance. It’s the idea of: He owns you. And He has the right to tell you what to do and when to do it and how to do it. That’s what Lord is all about. I’m going to prove that to you in a little bit here from the Scriptures. Let me tell you. What Paul is saying, “If you confess…” What’s that all about? If I confess… I mean, anybody can say, “Jesus is Lord.” Can’t they? I mean, people do it all the time, do they not? Look, the confession that Paul’s talking about is a confession that comes forth from the heart. The confession of the mouth coming forth from the heart that believes what it’s confessing. And if you believe Jesus Christ is Lord, you submit to Him. Remember this from Titus: “By their works they deny Him.” The way you attest to truly accepting Him, is to live based on what you say you believe. If you tell me you believe something, but you’re not willing to rest yourself on it. And I was just telling somebody the other day, and this is what Craig and I remember from early days about the whole wheelbarrow bit. I was telling somebody if there was a line stretched from the top of that building over there to the top of this building over here, and I said, hey, I can walk that and I can do it with a wheelbarrow in my hands. And you say, yeah, I believe that. And then I say, ok, jump in the wheelbarrow. Let’s go. And you say, I’m not going. Well, you see, you can say you believe something but if you’re not willing to rest your life on it, it’s not true. You don’t believe it. Faith can be seen and can be tested by its willingness to trust what it says it believes in and act on what it says it believes in. If you believe in the heart that Jesus Christ is Lord and confess that with your lips, you will not then deny that by your works. Did Christ not say, “Many will say to Me in that day…” what? (from the room) “Lord, Lord.” They’re confessing it, are they not. And yet, He says what? Who enters the kingdom? Those who do the will. There is it. Submission to Lordship. It is not everybody who confesses Lord. It is those who by their life, submit to the Lord, and confess Lord that are going to be accepted in. Those same people saying, “Lord, Lord,” He says, “Depart from Me. I never knew you.” “You’re workers of iniquity.” “You’re not workers that submitted to Me. By your works, you denied Me. By your works, you showed you were lawless. You didn’t keep My commandments, which is the very proof that you are not one who truly knows Me. Because if you say you know Me and you don’t keep My commandments, you’re a liar and the truth is not in you.” This is what Lordship is all about. Now look, in Luke 6, I think it’s verse 46. Christ says this, “Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do the things I say?” Do you see what He’s saying? If you say, “Lord,” if you profess or confess Me as Lord, but then don’t do the things that I say, why do you say it? It’s a contradiction. And if you go on to read following the next three verses (47, 48, 49) you’ll see that He builds this very case. He says, “if you hear My word and do them, you’re the wise man.” “If you hear My word and don’t do it, you’re a fool.” And the day is coming when you’re headed towards ruin. Lordship. Let’s just finish up by being real practical here. How does this come out in the life? Just what I was talking about. Membership. Membership. You know what, does Jesus expect you to keep the Lord’s supper? He does. As often as you do it, do it in remembrance of Me. Do it. In remembrance of Me. He’s calling us to do it. He’s expecting that we will do it. Now there are many reasons just to delight in doing it. But if we’re dealing with Lordship itself, I look at it and I say, you know what, the Lord wants me to do this. Now My Lord not only has the authority to command me, I’ve been purchased with a price, I’m a slave of Christ. He not only has the authority. I know this about My Lord as well. He’s a lot wiser than I am. And He’s a whole lot more good than I am. And He’s knows what is for my greatest good a lot more than I do. And obviously, if He tells us that we should not miss the Lord’s Supper, there’s a reason. He’s got some blessing in it for us. It’s meant to strengthen you. You remember, maybe you don’t, but let me tell you. There is twice, to the Corinthians Paul says the Lord has given us authority. He says, look, we don’t exercise it just basically to have dominion over you. We exercise it for your welfare. We exercise it for your strengthening. The Lord has the right to designate authority. If the Lord designates authority to an apostle, or designates it to me as a pastor, and that apostle who has been designated that authority under inspiration can say, The Lord designated the authority. His authority. He gave it to us. Not so that we can come in here and run roughshod over you. He did it for your own good. We get something of the heart of this Lord. He says, “My burden is light.” His yoke is easy. He is not a difficult taskmaster. What He wants us to do, He wants us to do for a certain purpose. Let me tell you something, in Luke 19, you’ve got these folks – this is most men he’s describing, out there in the world. And they say, “we will not have this man to rule over us.” That’s what most men say. Now look, He’s kind to those who submit to Him. But don’t take that for weakness. Because several verses later, when He comes again, He says, “gather all those enemies before Me who would not have Me to reign over them and slaughter them before Me.” He is a fearful Lord. But a good one. So, the only confession of Christ as Lord that’s a saving confession is the one accompanied by a heart that believes it; by a life that shows that that faith is real. You get young people sometimes, yes, Jesus is Lord, they’ll confess that. But is He Lord of your life when it comes to who you select as a mate in marriage? Well, you get people that run off and they want to do every sort of thing, and overlook the fact that the guy that they’re interested in is almost definitely lost. Priscilla threw one at me last night. Women obeying their husbands. What a text that is! Women are supposed to obey their husbands as unto the Lord, who has the right. And women come along and they buck against that. They don’t want to obey their husbands. Before any of you husbands get on that kick, you need to remember that you’re supposed to love your wives as Christ loved the church. You’ve been commanded to do that by the Savior as well. Again, don’t forsake the assembling together of yourselves. This is a command of the Lord. And yet, people want to float around. They don’t want to assemble with the church. They don’t want to come pray with the church. They don’t want to break bread with the church. Listen to me. Here’s something. When a person savingly believes in Christ as Lord, suddenly life becomes an altogether different thing. I may need to offend family, not to offend Christ. I may have to get fired from my job, not to offend Christ. I may have to make radical decisions in my life to cut things out that I always thought they defined my life. I need to do that. You don’t understand. I need to do that. Oh wait. The Lord does not share His throne with anyone. He comes in, and He says, in Luke 14:33, “Unless you forsake all that you have, you cannot be My disciple.” This Lord comes in and He says, “I will be Lord of all.” He is Lord of all. Let me tell you something too. We don’t make Jesus Lord. God declared that He made this Christ both Lord and Christ. He made Him. We don’t make Him so. He is so. I can remember as a new Christian, suddenly being confronted, the Lord wants me to obey the governmental authorities. He wants my taxes paid, He wants me to drive the speed limit. I remember being confronted by those things. He wants me to only find a wife who is saved. He basically has say. He wants me to not forsake the assembling together of myself; He wants me to be involved with the church. I see that He is reigning in my life. That no longer do my agendas and my will, my plans take the day. He’s got plans for me. He comes in and says, “I want it all forsaken.” “Lay it down.” Resignation. There are folks on every hand that will tell you about a Christ who doesn’t demand everything from you. I’ll tell you why. Because men want to hold on to their sin and be spared death and wrath and hell. And so in one hand, they hold their sin. In one hand, they want to create a Christ that will take them to heaven without letting go of all the sin. Christ marches in there and He says, “I’ll save you, but you’ve got to receive Me as Lord.” “You’ve got to abandon everything to My Lordship.” When He says, “Follow Me,” that’s exactly what He’s calling you to do. Forsake it all. Whatever agenda you had in life to make money, to be famous, to be well-educated, whatever it is, He says, “Lay it down.” That’s not to say as Lord He may not let you go to school. That’s not to say that as Lord, He may not give you a lot of money. I’ll tell you what, one place that men’s hearts can be tested in this area is money. He comes in, He says, “I want it all.” Lord, it’s 10%! He says, “I want it all. I am Lord.” “I am Lord of Lords.” “I am Lord of all.” “I am Lord of you.” “I’m Lord of all you have.” He says, “I want it all.” “And I’ll explain to you how I want you to use it.” Again, this isn’t harsh. This isn’t torturous. You know what He’s saying to us? “I want to show you how to use it for your greatest eternal benefit.” Men say, no, I’m going to use my money the way I want. Christ comes in as Lord, and He says, “Don’t lay up treasure on this earth.” Oh, but I’ve got my retirement; I’ve got my deal. Certainly, He wouldn’t want that. Oh, how culturally, we can just dismiss the words of our Lord. He’s Lord. You say, well, what would He have me to do with my money? Take care of your family? Yep. Provide for your needs? Absolutely. Provide for those who preach the Gospel? You’d better believe it. Give it to those who are widows and orphans? Absolutely. Does He say that you’ve got to have this big surplus for a future day? He doesn’t say that. Scripture says, “My God shall supply all your needs.” This is what it’s all about. Trusting the Lord. I can say, “ok, Lord, I’m going to give it all away.” Haven’t we seen that as a church? Ok, Lord, we’re going to give it all away. In fact, Lord, we’re going to commit to giving even more away than we even have or ever have had. We’re going to give it away. And we’re looking to Him. “You’re Lord.” Cattle on a thousand hills. They’re Yours. All the money, all the silver, all the gold, it’s Yours. I mean, He’s Lord. If He tells us to do it, we’re not going to be losers for doing it. He’s Lord. Folks, I want you that visit, I want you that are members of this church, let’s talk that way. Hey, let’s go back to the book of Acts. That’s our pattern. That’s our blueprint. How many times do you think in the book of Acts they called Christ Savior? Twice. How many times do you think they called Him Lord? times. In the New Testament, Jesus Christ is called Lord 747 times. You can remember that, right? just like the aircraft. You’ve got it down. I took that number from MacArthur who counted them. Or at least read somebody who did count them. I knew he said something about that. I looked at the back page of “The Gospel According to Jesus” and I found 92 times. I went through and counted in Acts. I had 91. Then I opened MacArthur; he said 92, so I took 92. And maybe the translational difference. I don’t know. Folks, the early church and the Holy Spirit who inspired those early church writers wanted us to know the Christ we set forth, the Christ we proclaim to men, the Christ we must believe on, He is Lord. Amen. You’re dismissed.