Good Works and the Gospel (Isaiah 64:6, Ephesians 2:10)
-In this world, we as Christians must be the spiritual summit to change the spiritual flow in our field. Therefore, we have to focus on three things every single day.
1)The person of God’s Word (Gospel)
-The gospel can save and change us. Although our spiritual identity was changed when we believed in Jesus Christ, we have wrong imprints, roots, and nature in us. The Word of God can heal you totally.
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
-You must have the time to meditate upon the Word of God that God gave you.
2)The person of prayer
-Without prayer, your relationship with God is meaningless. The faithful figures who received God’s answer in the Bible and church history are the person of prayer. They prayed with God’s Word and covenant.
John 15:7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.
3)The person of evangelism
-The spiritual summit of God is the witness of Jesus Christ. They testify the living God and His work in their lives. We have to receive evangelism training and prepare what we say for the questions from nonbelievers.
2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.
-In this world, many people misunderstand that they can receive salvation through good deeds or charities. Today, we should distinguish between good deeds and the Gospel.
1.In order to resolve problems, human beings do a good deed
1)All human beings have original sin
①The sin of Genesis 3 is the original sin (Gen. 3:1-10).
-Adam and Eve disbelieved and disobeyed God’s Word (Gen.2:17) and followed the sayings of Satan (Gen.3:1-6). The core of original sin is disobedience and disbelief toward God’s Word. Therefore, human beings are separated from Holy God (Rom.3:23). They became the slaves of Satan (John 8:44).
②All human beings have this original sin when they are born.
-All humans are the descendants of Adam and Eve. They have original sin and are born as sinners in this world.
Romans 5:12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned
2)Therefore, all humans are sinners
①No one among human beings is righteous
-Before God, all human beings are sinful, corrupt, and unrighteous. In them, there is no righteousness.
Romans 3:10-12 As it is written: “There is none righteous, no, not one;11 There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God. 12 They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.”
Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
②Our good and righteous deeds are filthy rags because we are sinners.
-Because they are sinner, people commit sins continuously. Their good deeds cannot make the way to meet God.
Isaiah 64:6 (ESV) We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.
-Human merits that Roman Catholics support cannot resolve original sin. Only Jesus Christ can forgive our sins, make the way to meet God, and set us free from Satan (Mark 10:45; John 14:6; 1 John 3:8)
③Because of sin, people cannot meet God.
-Human beings are separated from Holy God due to their sins.
Isaiah 59:1-2 Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear. 2 But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hiddenHis face from you, So that He will not hear.
④The result of sin brought eternal death for human beings
-The result of sin is physical and spiritual death that means to be separated from God.
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
-In the judgment day, nonbelievers will go to hell as the second death.
Revelations 20:14-15 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.
⑤The better (nicer) a pirate is, the more wicked a robber is in a pirate ship.
-If their spiritual identity is not changed into God’s child, their good deeds cannot save themselves and others. They are royal to Satan who is the prince of the world (John 16:11).
3)Outside of Christ, there is no hope.
-In the world, in human methods and efforts, there is no hope for salvation. Salvation comes from only Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 2:12-14 that at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ 14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation
2.Understand true good-deeds.
1)What is real good deeds?
-Actually, we are created for God’s good works.
Ephesians 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
-What are God’s good works? What is goodness of God? God’s goodness manifests His love and righteousness for us. Especially, His love shows His redemption through the death of Jesus Christ.
Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
-Therefore, God’s goodness and good works are closely connected to redemption and salvation that restore the order of creation (Gen. 1:31).
2)Christians’ good deeds
①True good deeds are to provide true answers for the fundamental problems
-To share the gospel to the lost people is the true good deeds that God wants.
Acts 16:30-31 And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” 31 So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
②True good deeds are to help people to escape from their fate and destiny
-People are under the power and influence of fate. To save them through the gospel is the true good deeds.
Acts 3:4-6 And fixing his eyes on him, with John, Peter said, “Look at us.” 5 So he gave them his attention, expecting to receive something from them. 6 Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.”
③True good deeds are to deliver people from the darkness.
-Many people do not believe even the existence of Satan. Through the gospel, we can save them from the slavery of Satan. It is the true good deeds.
Acts 16:16-18 Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. 17 This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.” 18 And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour.
④True good deeds are to train Christians as disciples
-To nurture believers through the Word of God is the true good works that God desires in our lives.
Colossians 1:28-29 Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect (mature) in Christ Jesus. 29 To this end I also labor, striving according to His working which works in me mightily.
⑤True good deeds are to train Christians with evangelism training
Matthew 4:19 Then He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Matthew 4:23 And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.
-Like Jesus Christ did, we must establish the disciple of Jesus Christ through gospel and evangelism training in the church and the field.
1)Have the time of spiritual concentration
-Every single day, we must have the time to focus on the Word of God. This time is the spiritual concentration time and makes you realize the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 3:17-19 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— 19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.