Praise the Lord Saints
Before I get into the meat of the lesson I want to pose a question, why is it that people are so dead set on stating that Mary Magdalene delivered the “first gospel” message?
Matthew 28: 10 (ESV) Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
Mark 16:7 But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.”
Sounds like they, not just Mary, they were instructed to deliver a message as you would an errand messager, not the gospel.
14 Afterward he appeared to the eleven themselves as they were reclining at table, and he rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who saw him after he had risen. 15 And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
This is the commandment, commission given to the eleven, proclaim the gospel.
Stop it with the twisting of the Word of God just to suit your own beliefs and wants versus what He said.
I could go deeper but it’s not necessary.
A departure of a departure from sound doctrine
What is new from the pulpit has become more important than expositional teaching on what God has written. Because of this emphasis, many do not know how to identify error, nor have a clue on what to do about it. Because of this lack of conveying doctrine to the assembly, we also find people that believe they can be Christian without the confines of doctrine. They like the moral teaching and higher ethics Jesus offers, they will emulate Jesus but they do not find it necessary to do it by the book. Jesus becomes their mentor and helps reinforce their views of what they think is right in life.
Paul wrote to young Timothy who was trained in the Jewish Scriptures since his youth. 2 Timothy 4:3-5: “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”
Paul spoke prophetically bout that that “time” which should be apparent to all has come. They “will not endure sound doctrine.” They will NOT put up with those who teach correctly. Why? Because they have a need to scratch their ears with something new (like the Greek philosophers on Mars Hill). They intentionally turn from hearing the truth and appoint teachers that will speak (scratch) to what their itch (desire) dictates.
Some in the Church that have been persuaded not to sit under sound Bible teaching that will awaken them. More pulpit time is devoted to storytelling, jokes and illustrations (stories- fables and myths) than the exposition of the word. The sheep’s diet consists more of entertainment, with music, skits and dances with sermons that are like drinking warm milk that will only help them go to sleep.
But didn’t Jesus teach numerous of stories? Jesus only started to speak stories and parables because the nation of Israel rejected him as the Messiah. He did not start off his ministry with stories but with explaining the meaning of the Scripture from which they had strayed from. He often stated “have you not read,” “it is written,” “For I say to you,” etc. Once Israel’s leadership had blasphemed the Holy Spirit Jesus would almost always have a parable to accompany His teaching. It was not a good thing but a judgment in which He hid the spiritual meaning of the story from those who did not have ears to hear and made it more clear to those who were following the truth.
Of course Bible verses are still used in these sermons (mostly principles), but these are an added content to a message that is not based on or out of the Scripture. This changes the whole substance of the message. The more alienated we are to Scripture teaching of verse upon verse the more we become susceptible to trends. We wait for the newest idea, the newest method that will help enhance our spirituality. We are convinced what worked before does not work for today. We need something different, fresh for our times; the people, fashions and culture have changed. New books, new seminars on the newest concepts. We are excited thinking where is God taking the church. The fact is, it is not God taking us anywhere, He has been pointing to where He has always been and where He wants us to be, in the WORD.
Till next week,
Rev. Dr. Robert L. Harrison, PhD