Participants: Pastor Stephen Bohr
Series Code: CGC
Program Code: CGC000007
01:12 Shall we bow our heads for prayer?
01:14 Father in heaven, we thank You so much, once again,
01:18 for the privilege of being here for this session
01:22 to study Your Holy Word.
01:23 We ask that as we try and decipher what is happening
01:28 in this world; the causes for what's happening,
01:31 that Your Holy Spirit will instruct us and help us
01:35 long all the more for that great day when evil and suffering
01:39 will come to an end.
01:40 So open our minds and our hearts.
01:43 We pray in Jesus' name, Amen.
01:46 I'd like to begin our study at the book of Genesis 1:31.
01:55 We've read this before, but we want to read it again.
01:58 Genesis 1:31. It's speaking here about the conclusion
02:06 of God's work of creation.
02:08 And at the end of creation we find these words:
02:12 Then God saw every thing that he had made, and, indeed, it was
02:21 very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
02:28 So at the conclusion of creation week, with the exception of the
02:32 seventh day, which we will discuss later on, we're told
02:35 that everything that God made was very good.
02:40 Now this includes the vegetable kingdom.
02:46 The garden of Eden was kind of like a botanical garden.
02:51 The Bible tells us that there were no thorns.
02:54 There were no thistles.
02:55 There were no weeds before sin.
02:58 It included also the animal world.
03:01 According to Genesis 1:30 all animals before sin
03:08 were vegetarians.
03:10 It includes also the kingdom of human beings.
03:17 They were in perfect harmony, in perfect accord.
03:22 The Bible tells us that Adam and Eve were one.
03:25 They were created one by God.
03:27 But God placed a test in the garden of Eden.
03:31 And if Adam and Eve passed the test creation would continue
03:37 as God had intended.
03:39 But if Adam and Eve did not pass the test, then creation would
03:45 fall into chaos, into disarray.
03:50 Now that test was found in a tree.
03:53 Go with me to Genesis 2:16, 17, Genesis 2:16, 17.
04:22 So God placed in the garden of Eden a test.
04:24 He said creation will continue very good, as I created it,
04:29 as long as you abstain from eating from the tree;
04:34 As long as you keep my commandment.
04:36 And as we've seen, all of the commandments were contained
04:40 in that one commandment.
04:42 The Bible tells us that Adam and Eve sinned, and as a result
04:50 creation, to a great degree, was thrown into disarray.
04:54 As we're told in Genesis 3:18, the earth began producing thorns
05:02 and thistles, which were unknown before sin.
05:06 The Bible also indicates, as we move along, that the animal
05:13 kingdom became a violent kingdom.
05:15 Animals started killing animals for food.
05:18 We also find that in consequence of sin, that oneness between
05:23 Adam and Eve was broken, because as we mentioned
05:27 in our last lecture, Adam began blaming God for giving him Eve,
05:33 and Eve began blaming God and blaming the serpent.
05:37 In other words, that oneness was broken in consequence of sin.
05:43 Something terrible had happened to this world
05:48 as a result of sin.
05:49 You see, what happened is that before sin entered into this
05:56 world, everything was other centered; was centered towards
06:02 helping others, living for others.
06:07 But in consequence of sin, self took the throne.
06:12 The core of man was changed from others to self,
06:19 and this was in consequence of Satan telling Eve,
06:24 you don't have to depend on God,
06:26 you don't have to worship God,
06:28 you don't have to obey God,
06:30 you can be God yourself.
06:32 And so the core of man was shifted from God,
06:37 and from others to self.
06:40 In other words, the heart of man was sickened
06:45 and became spiritually diseased.
06:48 And in consequence, to the condition of the heart of man,
06:52 now his behavior reflected the condition of the heart.
06:57 Go with me to Genesis 4:8, Genesis 4:8.
07:04 Here we have the first murder of human history.
07:08 We're told there in verse 8:
07:26 First murder in human history!
07:30 Now what we're not told in Genesis, but we are told
07:34 in a text that we're going to read in a moment,
07:36 is that something happened to Cain before he actually
07:41 committed the act of murder.
07:43 Go with me to 1 John 3, 1 John 3.
07:48 You see the problem with Cain was not a problem with
07:51 his behavior, it was a problem with his heart, with his core
07:55 nature. He became irate with his brother because something
07:59 was wrong with his heart, with the inside.
08:02 We're told there in 1 John 3:12, (and then we'll jump down
08:09 to verse 15), the following:
08:11 Not as Cain, who was of the wicked one,
08:16 and murdered his brother.
08:18 And why did he murder him?
08:21 Because his works were evil, and his brother's righteous.
08:27 But now let's jump down to verse 15, where we're told what
08:31 happened with Cain before he killed his brother. It says:
08:35 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer: and you know that
08:42 no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
08:47 Now that's interesting.
08:49 Not only is the act of murder a violation of the commandment
08:55 that says, Thou shalt not kill.
08:57 But according to 1 John 3:15, hating your brother is already
09:02 murder committed in the heart.
09:05 In other words, the act that Cain committed was actually
09:09 a consequence of the condition of the hatred which he harbored
09:13 in his heart. The problem that Cain had was not with his
09:17 actions, it was with his heart.
09:21 Go with me to Genesis 6, moving on through this book,
09:25 Genesis 6:5. This is speaking about the pre-flood race;
09:32 the antidiluvia race.
09:34 They had become very, very wicked, very evil.
09:38 But I want you to notice where the problem began.
09:41 It says in Genesis 6:5:
10:00 Where did the problem begin?
10:02 In the thoughts of his heart.
10:05 Now notice what came as result of that.
10:08 Let's jump down to verses 11 and 12, verses 11 and 12.
10:14 It says:
10:31 When the Bible uses the expression, the way, it means
10:34 that the earth had corrupted its behavior.
10:37 Its actions were corrupted.
10:40 But you notice that the root cause was that every intent,
10:43 or thought of the heart was evil continually.
10:46 In other words, the problem was not with behavior.
10:49 The problem was with the root, with the heart,
10:53 which led to this wrong behavior.
10:55 Now let's move on a little bit to Genesis 8:21, Genesis 8:21.
11:04 This is after the flood.
11:06 And notice what we find in this verse; very revealing.
11:11 This is after Noah offers a sacrifice. It says:
11:16 And the Lord smelled a soothing aroma.
11:20 Then the Lord said in his heart, I will never again curse
11:25 the ground for man's sake; although the imagination
11:30 of man's heart is evil from his youth.
11:34 Did you catch that?
11:36 The imagination of the heart of man is evil from his youth,
11:42 according to this.
11:43 Once again we find that the problem with human beings
11:48 is with the heart, whereas before the heart went out
11:51 towards God, in love for God.
11:54 Whereas the heart went out in love for Eve, and Eve for Adam,
11:59 now as a result of sin everyone turned their look inward
12:05 towards self. Notice also Genesis 27:41, Genesis 27:41,
12:14 this same idea that the problem is heart disease.
12:18 The problem is not with evil actions.
12:21 The problem is with the root.
12:23 You see, if you have a bad root you will have bad fruit.
12:27 And sometimes we try to deal with the fruit before we deal
12:31 with the root. Go with me to Genesis 27:41, and we'll find
12:38 the same idea again in the book of Genesis.
12:41 And this will be our last example from Genesis,
12:44 because we want to see how this idea is developed
12:46 throughout the rest of the Bible as well.
12:49 Here Esau is speaking after Jacob stole his birthright.
12:56 It says there in verse 41: So Esau hated Jacob.
13:03 What did he do? He what?
13:06 He hated Jacob because of the blessing with which his father
13:11 blessed him: and Esau said in his heart, The days of mourning
13:19 for my father are at hand; then I will kill my brother Jacob.
13:28 Where did murder start?
13:30 Murder did not start when Esau went with 400 men to try
13:35 and kill his brother.
13:36 Murder began when he had the intention of killing his brother
13:41 long before he attempted to perform the action.
13:45 And so the book of Genesis clearly reveals that because of
13:51 sin the heart of man was ruined.
13:54 By the way, the Bible calls it the sinful flesh.
13:59 The Bible calls it the old nature, the sinful man.
14:05 Man who is focused only on himself; that wants everything
14:09 for himself. Selfishness, the opposite of love, as we noticed
14:16 in our last lecture.
14:17 And the problem is that we are born this way.
14:22 Go with me to Psalm 51, and let's read verse 5, Psalm 51:5.
14:30 The Bible tells us that we are born with heart disease.
14:34 And you thought we did it as a result of our diet!
14:37 Ha ha, we do! It gets worse as a result of our spiritual diet.
14:43 But we're born with the disease.
14:45 Notice Psalm 51:5. Here David says:
15:00 Now this doesn't mean that we actually are guilty of Adam's
15:04 original sin. What it means is that we inherit from Adam
15:08 a sinful nature, a selfish nature.
15:12 In other words, we are born selfish.
15:15 You say, no we're not.
15:16 Is there anything more selfish in the world than a baby?
15:21 For a baby there's no one on planet Earth except him or her.
15:28 If you don't believe it, just don't give the baby his bottle
15:33 when he feels like you should give it to him.
15:35 He says real nicely, Mom would you please give me
15:39 my bottle now? You know it's not that way!
15:42 The baby screams, and kicks, and gets red, saying,
15:49 don't you know that I'm hungry?
15:51 We're born selfish.
15:55 And then that baby grows to about 3 years old.
15:59 The parents go to Wal-Mart.
16:01 That's about the only place I can afford.
16:03 Give a good plug here for Wal-Mart: go to Wal-Mart.
16:09 Little Johnny goes to the toy department, and he sees a
16:15 little truck that he likes.
16:16 He grabs the truck and he comes to Mommy and he says,
16:21 Mommy, I want this truck.
16:23 Mommy says, No, not today, Johnny.
16:26 Mommy, I want this truck.
16:28 No, not today Johnny.
16:30 Mommy, and he starts screaming, and he gets red.
16:38 And I've seen some children throw themselves on the floor
16:42 and start kicking, because Mommy did not buy ME the truck,
16:48 of all things! And then, of course, little Johnny grows
16:52 until he's about 21, and he gets married.
16:56 And things last real nicely for about two months.
17:00 And then he starts complaining.
17:06 She doesn't iron MY clothes.
17:08 See, I'm old fashioned.
17:11 She doesn't wash my clothes.
17:13 She burns the potatoes.
17:18 She doesn't provide sexual satisfaction.
17:22 And what is the idea?
17:24 She's not doing it for me, for me, for me, for me.
17:31 In sin we are conceived, according to David,
17:35 because we are born selfish, and therefore we can never
17:41 trust our heart. Notice what we find in the book of
17:44 Jeremiah 17:9, Jeremiah 17:9.
17:50 Here we find an additional detail about our condition
17:54 in consequence of sin.
17:57 It says there, in Jeremiah 17:9:
18:11 That's quite a description of the heart.
18:14 Once again, he says, The heart is deceitful above all things,
18:18 and desperately wicked: who can know it?
18:22 Notice Proverbs 28:26, Proverbs 28:26.
18:30 This is good counsel for young people who are thinking about
18:37 courting and getting married.
18:39 Notice what the wise man, Solomon, says.
18:43 Proverbs 28:26: He who trusts in his own heart is a fool.
18:54 Of course, if it's desperately wicked, if you trust in your own
18:57 heart you are a fool. Right?
19:00 He who trusts in his own heart is a fool: but whoever walks
19:06 wisely, will be delivered.
19:08 It makes me think of some young people, you know,
19:12 they fall in love. Interesting that you say they fall in love.
19:17 Ha ha ha ha ha. And they don't look at any danger signals.
19:22 Those are like Sampson. Hello!
19:25 Who saw Delilah and he said, she's beautiful!
19:29 She makes my heart beat faster.
19:31 And his parents say, Yeah, but is she an Israelite?
19:36 Well, no, but I might convert her.
19:38 The Bible doesn't say that, but, you know, he probably believes
19:42 every argument in the book, to have an excuse to get married
19:46 with Delilah, and with this other Philistine woman.
19:49 And he fell in love.
19:51 And he got married.
19:53 And as a result, by the way, he said, Get her for me, because
19:58 she's pleased my eyes, and that very act made him lose his eyes,
20:02 because his eyes were poked out, and he became a servant,
20:09 grinding grain in the mill, because he followed his eyes,
20:17 because he followed his heart, and the heart is deceitful,
20:20 because we are conceived in sin.
20:24 Do you know that Jesus knew how much power the heart has?
20:29 I'm amazed at the number of times that Jesus speaks about
20:34 the heart as the source of all evil, or the source of all good.
20:41 Mostly He speaks about the heart being a dangerous thing to
20:46 trust in, because it leads to evil, because evil springs from
20:51 the heart, from this selfish nature, from this self-centered
20:54 nature, from this iniquitous selfishness.
20:59 Now let's read some statements of Jesus where He speaks about
21:02 the heart. Notice Matthew 6:21, Matthew 6:21.
21:09 Here Jesus is speaking about money.
21:13 Is that a big problem in the world today?
21:17 The love of money?
21:19 The apostle Paul says that the love of money is the root of all
21:24 evil. I think that you could agree with that.
21:29 Notice Matthew 6:21. Jesus says:
21:45 Do you know what? It does no good for me as a minister
21:52 to twist people's arms to give money to the church.
21:56 It does no good, because if money is going to come
22:02 it needs to come from where?
22:04 It needs to come from the heart.
22:06 And people who hoard money, who are selfish with their money,
22:12 who are always thinking of a rainy day, and hoarding their
22:18 resources. Their problem is not money, their problem is
22:24 with their what? with their heart, their selfish heart.
22:28 Selfishness leads to hoard money, to save for a rainy day.
22:33 Jesus says, Therefore lay up treasures in heaven.
22:37 Don't lay them up on earth.
22:41 Notice also what we find in Matthew 12:34, continuing with
22:48 what Jesus had to say about the heart.
22:50 Matthew 12:34. Here Jesus says this:
23:08 Why couldn't they speak good things?
23:10 Because they were evil. Hello!
23:24 So what determines the words that you speak?
23:27 The condition of your heart.
23:30 What determines the way that you use your money?
23:33 The condition of your heart.
23:35 You know, when I was a kid sometimes I would get in trouble
23:41 in school for saying some naughty things.
23:47 I don't do that anymore.
23:48 Yeah, right, you say.
23:52 When I used to get home, you know, it was a double whammy
23:57 because I got punished at school, and then my parents
23:59 punished me at home.
24:00 They didn't side with the transgressor.
24:04 You know, sometimes parents side with their kids,
24:07 even though they know that they're guilty.
24:10 Well, I got punished when I got home, too.
24:13 And, you know, my Mom, what she would do if I spoke words
24:19 that I wasn't supposed to speak.
24:20 She'd take me to the bathroom and she would wash
24:22 out my mouth with soap.
24:26 And, you know, after many years I one day told my Mom,
24:30 I said, Mom, I remember when you used to wash out my mouth with
24:34 soap. You got it wrong, because the Bible says that what you
24:39 needed to wash was my heart.
24:41 Because if you wash my heart my words would be good.
24:45 See, washing the mouth is the wrong thing.
24:48 When the source is wrong, the words will be wrong.
24:51 The problem is not with the words, it's with the heart.
24:54 The problem is not with the money, it is with the heart.
24:58 We have heart problems.
25:00 We're born selfish.
25:02 Something has to happen to that selfish heart, or we are going
25:06 to be miserable all our lives, and we are going to lose
25:10 everlasting life on top of it.
25:12 Notice also what we find in Matthew 15:19, Matthew 15:19.
25:20 Jesus had a lot to say about the heart, and the influence that
25:25 it has upon our actions.
25:26 Matthew 15:19. Notice His words:
25:40 Did you catch that?
25:59 Where do all of these evil actions come from?
26:02 From the heart, by the way, and these are the things that
26:06 defile a man according to Jesus.
26:08 Now, let me ask you, is this list a list of violations of
26:12 the ten commandments?
26:13 Did you notice that?
26:15 Which commandment is murders?
26:21 Thou shall not kill?
26:23 How about adulteries?
26:25 Thou shall not commit adultery.
26:27 How about thefts? Thou shall not steal?
26:29 How about false witness?
26:31 You shall not bear false witness.
26:34 In other words, where does the transgression of God's law
26:36 come from? It comes from the heart.
26:39 So if you're going to change from being a transgressor
26:44 of the law, to being a law abiding citizen in God's
26:48 kingdom, where does the problem need to be solved?
26:53 The problem needs to be solved in the heart.
26:56 Because all of these transgressions of God's Holy
27:00 law, of God's ten commandments, come according to the Bible,
27:04 from the heart. Notice Matthew 5.
27:09 You know, Jesus had so much to say about the heart as the
27:12 source, as the evil source of actions.
27:16 Matthew 5:17, 18. Here Jesus is speaking about adultery,
27:23 and He says this... Matthew 5: 27, 28.
27:31 You have heard that it was said to those of old,...
27:40 Is that one of the ten commandments?
27:44 It sure is. But now notice:
28:03 Wow! If we applied this definition, how many male
28:09 adulterers would there be in this world, who never have
28:14 committed the act of adultery, but who have certainly coveted,
28:20 or lusted after another woman other than their wives?
28:24 And it works the other way around as well, because women
28:29 also do the same thing from their side.
28:31 You notice that Jesus doesn't say that lusting leads someone
28:38 to commit adultery.
28:39 He says that lusting is adultery.
28:43 He says a person who lusts after another woman, other than his
28:47 wife, has already committed adultery in his heart.
28:52 Adultery is committed when we have the feeling,
28:57 or the thought, in our heart even before the action
29:01 takes place. Wow! Jesus raised the bar!
29:06 You know some people say that Jesus did away with the
29:09 ten commandments. Jesus intensified
29:12 the ten commandments.
29:14 He says, You heard that you should not commit adultery.
29:17 And you think that because you haven't gone to bed with someone
29:19 else's wife, you haven't committed adultery.
29:21 He says, let me raise the bar just a little bit.
29:23 That commandment also reaches into your evil thoughts.
29:27 He says, You have heard from antiquity that you shall not
29:31 kill. But he says, Listen, if you call your brother a fool,
29:34 and you hate your brother, you've already committed murder
29:36 in your heart. Jesus, instead of getting rid of the
29:40 ten commandments, intensified, and amplified,
29:43 the ten commandments.
29:44 In fact, we're told in Isaiah 42:21 that Jesus would
29:49 magnify the law, and he would make the law honorable.
29:56 So are you seeing the problem that the world has today?
30:00 The problem is not with wrong actions, the problem is with
30:04 what? with the heart.
30:06 You hear a lot of people today thinking that the government is
30:10 going to resolve the moral issues in society.
30:12 They say if the government could just pass a law that says that
30:16 gays cannot be married, you would have the problem solved.
30:21 If you could just get the government to outlaw
30:24 pornography, the problem of pornography would be solved.
30:28 Let me tell you something, the government can propose all kinds
30:32 of laws against gay marriage, and against adultery,
30:35 and against pornography, and against all of these things,
30:39 but unless there's a change in the heart,
30:41 people will continue to do those things.
30:44 Because the heart of man is desperately wicked,
30:47 and a bad heart leads to bad behavior.
30:52 Notice Matthew 7:16-20, Matthew 7:16-20.
31:00 Jesus expresses it with another illustration,
31:03 or another example.
31:04 It says there in Matthew 7:16, Jesus speaking:
31:10 You will know them by their fruits.
31:13 Do men gather grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles?
31:19 Even so every good tree bears good fruit; but a bad tree
31:27 bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit,
31:32 nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.
31:35 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down,
31:39 and thrown into the fire.
31:41 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.
31:47 Because our tree is evil, our fruit is evil.
31:50 If the tree was good, the tree would produce what? good fruit.
31:56 But the problem is that we have a wicked, evil, corrupt heart.
32:03 We are suffering from heart problems,
32:08 and we need a cardiologist.
32:15 Before we claim the cardiologist though, we need to find out what
32:21 our real condition is.
32:22 We need to see our real condition, right?
32:24 Let me ask you, what is it that diagnoses our heart,
32:28 and shows us what our heart is like; what we truly are like?
32:31 Notice Romans 7, Romans 7:7.
32:38 We're going to study about the mirror of the heart;
32:41 that which shows our heart exactly the way it is.
32:45 You see, you can't get healing until you realize you're sick.
32:48 You won't look for a physician unless you know what
32:52 your disease is. And so you need someone to diagnose your disease
32:57 to find out what the problem is.
33:00 And we have a mirror that shows us what our problem is.
33:05 Notice Romans 7:7.
33:09 Here the Apostle Paul says, What shall we say then?
33:15 Is the law sin? Certainly not.
33:18 On the contrary, I would not have known sin,
33:23 except through the law: for I would not have known
33:29 covetousness unless the law had said, you shall not what?
33:33 You shall not covet.
33:34 How do I know that covetousness is wrong?
33:37 Because the law tells me so.
33:39 How do I know that stealing is wrong?
33:42 Because the law tells me so.
33:44 How do I know that committing adultery is wrong?
33:47 Because the law tells me so.
33:50 In other words, the law diagnoses my problem.
33:54 The law says, Listen, you've got heart problems.
33:57 You've got an evil, selfish heart, which is breaking
34:02 God's Holy law, and the law does not lie.
34:06 Now I want you to notice that God's Word, or His law,
34:11 goes very deep. It searches into the depths of our hearts,
34:16 and shows us exactly how we are, and what we need.
34:20 Notice Hebrews 4, Hebrews 4, and let's read verses 12 and 13.
34:26 Hebrews 4:12, 13.
34:30 Here the apostle Paul is speaking about the diagnostic
34:37 power of the Word of God. He says:
35:06 What does the Word of God do?
35:07 It comes in, it goes deep, and what does it seek out?
35:13 The thoughts and the intents of the heart.
35:16 Verse 13: And there is no creature hidden from his sight.
35:21 But all things are naked and open to the eyes of him to whom
35:28 we must give an account.
35:33 So who shows us that we're sick?
35:35 God through His Word, or through His law.
35:40 He says you've got heart problems.
35:43 And if you don't take care of those heart problems
35:46 you're going to have a cardiac arrest.
35:49 You need help. And, by the way, let me just tell you something.
35:56 When God changes someone, He changes them
35:59 from the inside out.
36:03 Do you believe that?
36:05 He cannot impose change from outside.
36:07 The changes has to come from inside.
36:09 It has to change the heart.
36:10 Let me give you an example.
36:14 I've used this before in another context, but how many of you
36:19 bake bread? You can raise your hand.
36:23 If you bake bread, I want to know where I can come
36:25 for lunch one of these days.
36:28 My wife makes very good bread.
36:30 And I want to tell you how she makes the bread so delicious.
36:34 She blends the water with flour and with the other ingredients.
36:39 She makes a big ball of dough, and she puts it in the pan,
36:44 and then she sprinkles yeast on top of the bread,
36:48 and puts it in the oven.
36:52 You snicker! You say, Pastor Bohr, you haven't watched
36:55 your wife make bread.
36:57 If she made bread that way, they would be more like the
37:01 stones that Jesus talked about.
37:02 Man shall not live by bread alone.
37:06 The devil said, turn these stones into bread.
37:09 You would need a miracle.
37:11 Where do you put the yeast, or the leaven?
37:15 You put the yeast or the leaven inside the dough.
37:18 And then what happens with the lump?
37:21 It grows from inside out.
37:26 And that's the way that human beings are changed.
37:30 They cannot be changed by legislation.
37:33 They cannot be changed by external means.
37:38 They can only be changed when the heart is changed.
37:42 And then the life and the behavior will be different.
37:47 Now let's read what the Apostle Paul says in Romans 7:18, 19,
37:54 Romans 7:18, 19.
37:58 And you tell me if this is your experience sometimes.
38:02 I know it's my experience.
38:04 Romans 7:18, 19. The apostle Paul says:
38:36 Have you ever had the experience of blurting out some words to
38:41 someone and afterwards you think, why did I say that?
38:46 Or have you ever done something and you say, why in the world
38:49 did I do that? Where did that come from?
38:52 Of course, that's my experience.
38:53 You've probably never had that experience, right?
38:56 Yeah, right! We all have it.
39:00 What's the problem?
39:02 The problem is with our inside.
39:05 The problem with it is with our heart.
39:07 And so our heart needs to be changed.
39:11 Now the question is, how can our heart be changed?
39:16 There are two steps:
39:19 Step 1. We're told in Romans 3: 23 that all of us have sinned,
39:29 and come short of the glory of God.
39:32 The first thing that we need to recognize is that we are what?
39:37 That we are sinners.
39:40 The second point that we need to recognize is in Romans 6:23,
39:44 where we are told:
39:51 Step 1. The Word of God shows me that I am a what?
39:56 That I am a sinner.
39:57 And because I am a sinner, I deserve death.
40:02 Which death? Everlasting death, eternal death, death from which
40:08 there will never be a resurrection.
40:09 And when I see myself in this desperate condition,
40:13 a sinner before God, deserving God's wrath to fall upon me,
40:19 deserving death, I cry out: who can save me?
40:24 And then I look at the cross of Jesus.
40:29 Do you know what I see at the cross of Jesus?
40:31 Go with me to Galatians 3:13, Galatians 3:13.
40:39 Here the Apostle Paul tells us what we see when we go to
40:42 Calvary; when we go to the cross. He tells us:
40:59 What has Christ done?
41:02 Redeemed us from the curse of the law.
41:04 Is the law bad? Why does it curse us then?
41:08 The reason why the law curses us is because we're sinners.
41:13 The law tells me, you're a sinner.
41:16 You're cursed. You deserve to die.
41:19 But it says here that Jesus has redeemed us from the curse of
41:25 the law. And how did he do it?
41:36 So when I come to the cross of Calvary, and I see Jesus
41:40 on the cross, what do I see?
41:43 I see One who took my sin upon Himself.
41:47 Undeservingly! He took it upon Himself.
41:52 He suffered the curse that I should suffer.
41:55 He suffered the death that I should suffer.
41:58 And when I see Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane,
42:02 sweating great drops of blood, and when I see Him on the cross,
42:07 I hear Him crying out, My God, My God,
42:09 Why hast thou forsaken me?
42:11 And when I see Him beaten, when I see Him agonizing,
42:16 I say to Jesus, why is this happening to You?
42:20 And Jesus says, the wages of sin is death.
42:25 I am bearing your suffering, and your death.
42:30 I am taking my curse upon myself.
42:34 When I see Jesus in that fashion I say,
42:37 Lord, sin is a terrible monster.
42:40 Look what it did to You.
42:41 I hate sin! I love You!
42:45 And at that moment a change takes place in my heart.
42:48 Now my heart ceases to be a selfish heart,
42:53 and it becomes a heart filled with love as a result of seeing
42:59 what Jesus was willing to do for me.
43:01 A change now takes place in my life.
43:04 As it says in Zachariah 12:10, that they will look upon him
43:12 whom they have pierced, and they will what?
43:16 They will cry out like one who has lost an only begotten son.
43:22 That's what should happen when we come to the cross,
43:25 and we see Jesus suffering the curse for us.
43:29 We should cry out and say, Sin is horrendous, Lord.
43:33 I don't want anything more to do with sin!
43:35 And, you know, lo and behold, when we come with that attitude,
43:40 1 John 1:9 tells us what the result is.
43:45 1 John 1:9 says:
44:01 In other words, I contemplate the cross, and I can go home
44:05 with the certainty of forgiveness.
44:07 No more guilt! I don't have to be walking around carrying guilt
44:13 all of the time. I can have the assurance of forgiveness
44:16 in Jesus. Now many Christians would like to end there.
44:20 They say, Oh yeah, Jesus paid so I don't have to.
44:24 Jesus died so that He could forgive me.
44:27 But many Christians continue living the way that they used
44:33 to live before they came to Jesus.
44:36 Now is that possible?
44:38 If our heart has been changed by coming to Calvary,
44:41 is there going to be a change in our life?
44:46 There has to be! And if there isn't, it's because we truly
44:51 have not come to the feet of Jesus.
44:53 Our heart has not truly been changed.
44:55 Now notice Ezekiel 36 what else God promises to do.
45:01 Ezekiel 36:26, 27. This is a wonderful promise
45:07 that God gives. Ezekiel 36:26, 27. He says this:
45:20 What does God promise?
45:22 To give us a new heart.
45:28 That means your selfish heart.
45:39 And now notice; will we obey the Lord now?
45:42 Oh, yes, but we will obey Him from the heart. It says:
45:55 Not because we have to, but because our heart has been
46:00 what? Because our heart has been changed.
46:03 You know, it makes me think about Adam.
46:05 Can you imagine when Adam had to offer that first sacrifice,
46:08 what it must have been like?
46:09 There was no death in the world.
46:13 And now the Lord tells them to take this innocent little lamb;
46:17 to take a knife and slit the throat of the lamb.
46:25 And the lamb profusely looses its blood.
46:30 And suddenly that lamb is limp in the arms of Adam,
46:38 in a world where there was no death?
46:42 And God tells Adam, that lamb represents your Creator.
46:49 It's much worse than just killing that animal.
46:52 You think that's terrible.
46:54 That lamb represents the Lamb of God who takes away
46:58 the sin of the world.
46:59 Do you think Adam looked at sin differently from that point on?
47:02 Oh, he understood the terrible nature of sin.
47:06 That it was going to take the life of Jesus.
47:08 And, by the way, at that moment Adam was regenerated.
47:12 He was born again!
47:15 His heart was changed.
47:18 Notice the beautiful promise of Jeremiah 31:33,
47:22 Jeremiah 31:33. This is a wonderful promise
47:28 that God gives. And I'm sure that we've read it many times,
47:31 but let's read it again, because it is a wonderful promise
47:35 that God gives. Jeremiah 31:33. It says:
48:05 Where does God promise to write His law?
48:09 He promises to write His law in our minds, and in our hearts.
48:14 And then if the law is in our heart, what is our behavior
48:18 going to be like? Our behavior is going to reflect
48:22 the condition of our heart.
48:24 By the way, many Christians are confused on this point.
48:28 They say, God got rid of the ten commandments written on
48:31 tables of stone. He nailed those old commandments to the cross.
48:36 Let me tell you something.
48:39 God did not get rid of the ten commandments.
48:43 The new covenant is not a covenant of grace,
48:48 while the Old Testament was a covenant of law.
48:50 In the Old Testament the law was written on tables of stone.
48:55 In the New Testament the law doesn't change.
48:59 It's the place where the law is written which changes.
49:02 Did you catch my point or not?
49:05 It does no good to have laws written on tables of stone.
49:09 You can't offend tables of stone.
49:11 You can't hurt tables of stone.
49:12 And no matter how much you try to measure up to what you find
49:16 written on stone, you say, okay let's see how I am doing?
49:19 And you make lists to see how your life compares with that
49:22 code on tables of stone.
49:24 It's useless if you have a bad heart, because you can't keep
49:27 that code. But when God takes His law, when you're converted,
49:32 when you come to Jesus, when you see how expensive sin is,
49:35 how much it hurts the heart of God,
49:36 how much it hurts others, that love is the fulfilling
49:40 of the law. Then God takes His law and He writes it
49:43 in your heart. And then it is a delight, it's a privilege,
49:47 it's a joy to observe God's law.
49:50 Not because we have to, but because we want to.
49:55 This is the reason why Jesus said, in a very well known
50:02 verse, John 14:15: If you love me, you will keep
50:07 my commandments. Incidentally, that's also the reason why
50:11 in Psalm 40:8, which is a messianic prophecy,
50:15 it's quoted in the book of Hebrews.
50:17 Jesus, when He's actually about to be incarnate
50:21 into the world says:
50:30 I delight to do your will, O my God, and your law is where?
50:36 Your law is within my heart.
50:38 I like to think of God as the great cardiologist.
50:44 Better than the doctors at Loma Linda.
50:49 But you know what?
50:50 God does not put in pacemakers.
50:55 God does not do bypasses.
50:58 God does not put in pig valves.
51:02 God doesn't reform our heart.
51:06 The only kind of surgery which God performs
51:10 is heart transplants.
51:13 He promises when we're converted when we come to Jesus,
51:18 to take out that heart of stone, that selfish heart, that old
51:22 human nature, which is selfish and always wants its own.
51:26 And when we come to Jesus our focus is shifted from self
51:33 to Christ. And then we're not concerned about our own thing,
51:38 we're concerned about the good of others.
51:40 We're concerned about the kingdom of God.
51:46 By the way, do you know that in Matthew 5:8 we are told by Jesus
51:52 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
51:58 The opposite side of the coin is not blessed.
52:04 I hesitated in using the word cursed, which is the antonym.
52:08 ...are those who have an impure heart, for they shall not see
52:13 God. Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.
52:19 You say now, Pastor, how can my heart be cleansed?
52:22 Well, the first step is to come to the cross of Jesus,
52:24 and see what sin costs, and ask Jesus to get rid of sin,
52:30 to forgive you of your sin, to cleanse you from all
52:32 unrighteousness. But then, you know, we have to keep
52:36 our heart in good shape.
52:37 We have to eat the right stuff, because even a new heart can
52:41 develop a lot of cholesterol if we feed it the wrong things.
52:45 Just because He gave you a new heart doesn't mean that you
52:48 have a new heart forever.
52:49 You have to feed yourself with the right things spiritually.
52:54 What am I talking about?
52:56 Go with me to Psalm 119, Psalm 119:9-11, Psalm 119:9-11.
53:07 Here David, by inspiration of the Holy Spirit,
53:12 wrote these words particularly for young people. He said this:
53:19 How can you cleanse your way?
53:26 With my whole heart I have sought you.
53:32 Oh let me not wander from your commandments.
53:36 And now comes the key verse:
53:46 What is the secret for overcoming sin, which is the
53:50 transgression of the law?
53:51 Hiding God's Word where?
53:53 In our hearts. And how does it get into our hearts?
53:57 Through our eyes and through our ears.
54:02 By listening to His Word, and by reading His Word.
54:06 That's the way it gets into our hearts,
54:09 and it gets into our minds.
54:10 And you know what happens?
54:11 At first I start reading the Bible, and as I read the Bible
54:18 the Bible starts reading me.
54:20 Are you understanding what I'm saying?
54:24 Because as I study scripture, scripture starts showing me
54:29 the way that I am.
54:30 It says, this is the problem you have.
54:32 You have this problem.
54:33 And you've got that problem.
54:35 And so if I let the Word come into my life, into my heart,
54:39 it is going to expel wickedness from the heart,
54:43 and I'm going to have good spiritual health.
54:46 Believe me, we're not going to have good spiritual health
54:48 if we're sitting down watching soap operas all day,
54:50 or if we're watching violence, and marital unfaithfulness,
54:58 and lying, and cheating.
55:00 If we expose our minds to those things our heart is going to
55:05 get sick. Even if God did give us, at some point, a new heart,
55:09 the new heart has to be taken care of.
55:11 Are you understanding what I'm saying?
55:13 It's not enough to come to the cross and say, Jesus forgive me.
55:17 Jesus says, I forgive you.
55:18 Okay Lord, and I go and continue living the way I've always
55:21 lived. The heart must be guarded.
55:25 The heart must be taken care of.
55:28 In the book of Ephesians, the Apostle Paul tells us,
55:31 that God cleanses the church by the washing of the water
55:36 through the Word.
55:38 Jesus said in John 15:3, He says, These are all clean
55:43 through the word that I have spoken unto them.
55:45 See, time and again the Bible tells us that the way in which
55:49 God cleanses our heart is through His Word.
55:51 I've hidden my word in your heart that I might not sin
55:54 against you. In Ephesians 5 we're cleansed by the water
55:59 through the washing of the word.
56:01 In 1 John 3:1-3 we have the same idea.
56:06 John 15:3 Jesus says that His Word, He's given His Word
56:12 to His disciples and His Word has cleansed them.
56:16 I'd like to conclude by mentioning a great hero
56:20 from the Bible. His name was David.
56:22 After David committed his terrible act, adultery,
56:29 and then having Uriah killed in battle after he took his wife,
56:40 David repented of his sin, and he wrote Psalm 51.
56:45 And David asked for two blessings.
56:48 The first blessing is in verses 1 and 2 where he says to God,
56:52 Please forgive me my sin.
56:55 He asked for forgiveness.
56:58 But then David said in verse 10, he says:
57:05 A what?
57:12 He knew that forgiveness was not enough.
57:14 That forgiveness had to go along with a change of heart.
57:19 May God give us that change.