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TPC - CD 07(N018) - God Cannot Lie

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07(N018) – God Cannot Lie! By Pastor Jeff Wickwire

Hebrews 6: 8-20; James 1:22-25; 2:17-20; Ephesians 2:8; Titus 3:1,8,10; Matthew 5:34-37

March 11, 2020

 

 

Notes

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:8 (NIV)

8But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed. In the end it will be burned.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

The writer of Hebrews continuously warns the Jews of his day to not apostatize by returning to Moses, but to come all the way in to Jesus Christ as Savior. He says if they reject Christ they are “near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned” (6:8).

Then next, the writer turns to the true believers and addresses them:

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:9 (NIV)

9Even though we speak like this, dear friends, we are convinced of better things in your case—the things that have to do with salvation.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 10:23 (NIV)

23Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

 

Notes

Next, he turns his attention to encouraging the true believers to continue on in their Christian labors:

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:10 (NIV)

10God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

He wants them to know that all they’re doing for the Lord is not in vain. Those who are true believers doing the work of the Lord will be rewarded. What’s done for Christ is NEVER in vain!

In light of that, he exhorts them to avoid spiritual laziness, which apparently was setting in on them:

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:11-12 (NIV)

11We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, so that what you hope for may be fully realized.

12We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

SLUGGISH is the word for lazy. He wants every Christian (including you and me) to show the same diligence and hope that the mature believers of that day were showing. Be diligent in the Lord’s work and don’t become sluggish.

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 5:11 (NIV)

11We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

 

Bible Verse

James 1:22-25 (NIV)

22Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.

23Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror

24and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.

25But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

The Apostle James talks about this:

“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and  forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do” (James 1:22-25).

 

Notes

James is saying that reading the Word of God is like looking in a mirror. You see your imperfections, the places in your soul that need to be changed, the areas you’re not Christ-like, those things that need readjusting. And it also shows you who you are in Christ, your calling, your purpose, your destiny. But then, as soon as you put the Word down, you forget everything you saw without acting on any of it! In other words, you are a lazy listener.

But the writer also says they’ve also grown lazy in their works. They’ve become like the guy sitting under a palm tree on some Caribbean island with Jimmy Buffet playing in the background, sipping a margarita and letting life slip on by without doing anything for God. 

So the writer firmly says, “Get up and get after it. Put feet to your faith and become diligent in the work of the Lord! Get involved in what God is doing. Use your gift. Do some Immanuel labor. Quit wasting your precious time!”

 

Bible Verse

Ephesians 2:8 (NIV)

8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

Now, it’s good to remember here that good works don’t save us. This is one of Paul’s mantras. He repeatedly taught the church, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the GIFT of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast” (Eph. 2:8).

 

Bible Verse

Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)

10For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

The NLT says, “God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a GIFT from God.” But while good works don’t save you, they are the evidence that you have been saved! For instance, Paul wrote two verses later in Ephesians, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Eph 2:10).

 

Bible Verse

James 2:17-20 (NIV)

17In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

18But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.

19You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.

20You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless ?

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

Every Christian is literally created, born again, to be involved in what God is doing! This is why James says again, “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. 18 But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. 19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. 20 You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless?” (James 2:17-20)

 

Bible Verse

Titus 3:1 (NIV)

1Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good,

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Bible Verse

Titus 3:8 (NIV)

8This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Bible Verse

James 3:10 (NIV)

10Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

If you have faith but are not involved in any way with what God is doing in the earth, you haven’t done anything more than the demons! They believe there is one God too!

The writer of Hebrews is telling the Christians that they need to move forward and let their faith produce some fruit. Good works that glorify God are supposed to be as common to the Christian as breathing!

For instance, in the book of Titus Paul exhorts Christians to “be ready for every good work” (3:1). And again in verse 8 that “those who have believed in God should be careful to maintain good works” (3:8) And yet again in verse 10 “let our people also learn to maintain good works, to meet urgent needs, that they be not unfruitful.”

And the writer of Hebrews is telling them the same thing—don’t become lazy in your faith. Get with the program. By faith and perseverance start inheriting the promises and bearing fruit! Then he uses Abraham as an example of one who, by active faith mixed with works, inherited the promises God made to him. He first points out what moved Abraham to believe and how we too can know that God’s promises can be totally counted on:

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:13-14 (NIV)

13When God made his promise to Abraham, since there was no one greater for him to swear by, he swore by himself,

14saying, “I will surely bless you and give you many descendants.”

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

God swore by Himself that His promise to Abraham of a son was totally and completely trustworthy. There was nothing and no one on earth or in heaven He could swear by greater than Himself. So God swore by Himself he would do what He promised.

Abraham believed Him:

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:15 (NIV)

15And so after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

Notice, he had to mix patience with his faith. He patiently endured. Faith without patience is crippled. Without patience, faith won’t obtain it’s desire. Faith and patience are the dynamic duo that obtain the promises of God. How many people have had faith for something only to give up before God answers for lack of patience!

Abraham believed that God could be counted on because he believed in God’s character—that He is trustworthy, true, righteous, and dependable.

The writer now continues to talk about how God swore by Himself:

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:16-18 (NIV)

16People swear by someone greater than themselves, and the oath confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument.

17Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath.

18God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

We know about swearing an oath like this. We hear people swear by something greater or more sacred than themselves all the time.

“I swear on my mother’s grave” this or that is true, or that I’ll do this or that. Or, “May God strike me dead if I’m not telling you the truth.” Or, “God as my witness…I’m telling the truth.”

But Jesus said we’re never to make oaths like that:

 

Bible Verse

Matthew 5:34-37 (NIV)

34But I tell you, do not swear an oath at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throne;

35or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King.

36And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black.

37All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

But where man is not to do it, God can and God did! He swore be His own name that He would fulfill His promise to Abraham by giving him a son.

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:17-18 (NIV)

17Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath.

18God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

God cannot lie! And the writer of Hebrews now turns this fact toward us—those who have placed our faith in Christ. In the same way Abraham placed his faith in a God who cannot lie, we too now place our faith in the very same God who has promised us salvation through His Son, Jesus Christ.

As surely as God fulfilled His promise to Abraham by giving him a son, He has fulfilled His promise to us by giving His only begotten Son, “that whoever believes on Him will not perish, but have everlasting life!” And through His Son, Jesus, we will be saved to the uttermost!

This, says the writer, is the hope that anchors our soul in every storm of life:

 

Bible Verse

Hebrews 6:19-20 (NIV)

19We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain,

20where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Notes

Our hope will not leave us disappointed. It is the anchor that holds our souls steady from the day we’re saved to the day we go home.

And notice, this hope we have in Jesus enters where the eyes can’t see—behind the veil. This points to the Presence of God that was manifested in the holy of holies, where only the High Priest could enter once a year.

The writer is telling us that our hope will ultimately carry us into the very presence of God’s throne in heaven. Our hope in Jesus will culminate in entering into the fullness of His Presence!

Jesus has gone there ahead of us where He is now our Great High Priest, ever living to make intercession for us!

NEXT TIME: We Meet Melchizedek

 

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