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November 3, 2002 AM

Mt 6:22,23

INTRO: I have often wondered which human faculty I could best do without. Would it be the faculty of taste? I know folks who have lost that wonderful faculty. What about our sense of smell? Again, I have known folks for whom that sense has become inoperative. Well, after thinking through the exercise, I have decided I would not enjoy losing any of these basic faculties. We take good care of our hearing ... and better care of our sight. Maybe the loss of sight would be the worst loss for most of us. Our text is a contrast between healthy and impaired vision.


A. Virtually all the body does depends on seeing

1. what hands and feet accomplish depends on seeing

2. true, blind people can cope - but they are in darkness

B. The eye in our text is the heart - the understanding

1. note Prov 23:26 connection of heart and eyes

2. the heart, the understanding determines the whole course of life (practical judgment)


A. It admits light (Ps 111:10)

1. Ps 119:130 the entrance of thy words ...

2. Ps 119:105 thy word is a lamp ... a light

3. Ps 119:18 open my eyes ...

4. the healthy eye permits the entrance of that which leads to wisdom, to understanding

5. the healthy eye does not distort but sees the truth as it really is

B. It discerns between things that differ

1. it is able because of the word which informs

2. note Phil 1:9,10 approve things that are excellent

3. 1 Thes 5:21 how, without the enlightening word?

4. in a world of great confusion and darkness disciples must be able to make these judgments

5. the worlds view is often, Oh, it doesnt make any difference - but more often than not, it does make a difference

C. It then determines the action to be taken

1. instructed, judging ... now acting

2. notice Mt 19:22 the action taken was not compatible with sound sight ... he had eye trouble

3. by contrast: Acts 19:18,19 a right action taken

4. the only way the whole body can be full of light is for the light to enlighten every action

5. but if actions do not conform to light, the eye is not functioning properly ... its diseased


A. It is blind ... there is only darkness (Eph 4:18)

1. this eye does not receive light

2. notice Rom 1:21 - they knew God ... but refused to glorify Him as God!

3. the diseased eye refuses light ... it makes a choice (unlike physical blindness)

B. It puts trust in the wrong places

1. further, in Rom 1:22,23 - professing ... to be wise!

2. Prov 12:15 way of a fool is right in his own eyes

3. it will stumble, mislead, ruin in falling

C. Note that there is no twilight here

1. Mt 6:23b how great is that darkness

2. if we are not walking in the light (1 Jno 1:7) we are walking in great darkness - so, Prov 4:19

3. still, we do have a choice here ... we are not consigned to darkness against our will ... we can open our eyes to the light if we so desire

CLOSE: There is no hope in darkness. The contrast is stark! One, or the other. I hope you will choose to permit the light of the gospel to shine into your life! Note Deut 12:8-11.

Cecil A. Hutson

03 November 2002

God's Plan of Salvation

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 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 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 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)

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!

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)