INTRO: How many times have I read the 119th Psalm? How many times have I referred to it? Yet, I never tire of its extolling of the virtues of the law of the Lord. I never read it that I do not find another wonder or lesson. Just so this morning I want us to look at the first section ... the first eight verses for a simple plain lesson about Walking in the Law of the Lord.
I. A DESCRIPTION OF THE PERSON WHO DOES SO
A. Such a person is undefiled in his way
1. we admit that life has its defiling aspects
2. the choices to sin are all about us - the bright lights beckon
3. but the law of the Lord implanted is powerful
4. notice 119:9 and 11 - Jas 1:21 - 1 Thes 2:13
5. a person walking the law of the Lord is undefiled because of the law!
B. Such a person keeps His testimonies
1. he recognizes the value, advantages of them
2. he understands the value of what he has in Gods law
3. Ps 19:7-11 this man knew the value of the word
4. 2 Tim 3:16 instruction in righteousness ... how could we know without some basis for knowing ... some body of revealed information?
5. these testimonies become life changing, forming
C. Such a person seeks God wholeheartedly
1. I continue to believe right here is one of the greatest problems for most folks
2. we can acknowledge the value of the word
3. we can acknowledge the benefits of godly living
4. but whole hearted? thats asking a lot!
5. Mt 6:33 - Mk 12:30 Anything less will be a constant difficulty for us
D. Such a person abstains from iniquity
1. Jas 1:27 unspotted from the world
2. But notice that He keeps Himself...He makes deliberate, conscious choices day by day
3. And there may be times which we make those choices alone...against the trends, the current (Eph 5:6,7)
4. I always recall Gen 39:9...Joseph abstained!
5. or Dan 1:8...Daniel abstained!
6. The choices are ours to make...to sin, or not-and no matter the situation, its finally our choice
II. THE CONSEQUENCES OF SUCH WALKING
A. Such a person will be happy (blessed)
1. I know that happiness is broadly defined
2. But consider such elements of true happiness as contentment, peace, certainty...this is blessedness
3. still, we must choose our definition-Gods or ours
4. Ps 112:1
B. Such a person will not experience shame
1. guilt leads to discovery - discovery leads to shame
2. but guilt will not be a problem for this person who walks in Gods law - it is violation which brings guilt
3. shame is not fun! and shame can be avoided!
4. I recall Num 32:23...will it be shame in this life...or in the judgment
C. Such a person praises God
1. Because he recognized that God has graciously provided His law for our benefit
2. because he recognized God is the source of blessing
3. note Ps 103:2 ff as such praise
CLOSE: Each of us has choices to make...and one of them involves the course our lives will take. Remember Mt 7:24-27. You choose.
Cecil A. Hutson
08 July 2001
You Must Hear the Gospel
You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)
You Must Believe
You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)
You Must Repent
You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)
You Must Confess
You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)
You Must Be Baptized
Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!
You Must Be Faithful Unto Death
Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)