Tuesday, April 8, 2008

"Proclaiming the Lord's death until He comes"

1 Corinthians 11:25 In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in My blood ; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me."26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until He comes.

Proclaiming the Lord's death-what does it mean for true believer's and for those who do not believe? This passage is multi-faceted. Of course the text only has one meaning but to proclaim the "His death" seems weighty at times, why? We are to be faithful ministers of the Gospel. Paul(Rom 1:16)says, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes." This passage confirms the fact the God is the one saving people not us. I really like apologetics and love a good theological debate every now and then but sometimes it seems the Christian apologist rely too much on their own resources and neglect the proclamation of the Gospel. I know from experience and have sharpened my apologetic sword many of times to come up void. Thinking the my craftiness of speech would logically convince someone to repent and come rushing to the kingdom. (John 6:44)I could not have been more wrong with my Arminian perspective. Now in my debate with non-believer's I first or last make sure during the conversation that the Gospel is clearly presented since I rely on the sovereignty of God to save and not my logic.

1 Corinthians 15:3For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep ; then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles; and last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared to me also.

We understand the Christ gave his life as a ransom for many.(Matt 20:28) We have to make sure in our presentation of the Gospel that we are gracious in the fact that we can recall when we were once blinded(2 Cor 4:4) and the Lord's was patient and gracious with us then and even now as we commit sins against Him. Do not be discouraged when you present the Gospel to people and they give you crazy stares about what you believe to be true according to the scriptures. To many it sounds insane to believe that a man died and 3 days later rose from the dead to die for the sins of the elect. People have said to me on many occasions, "You really believe A man-God incarnate rose from the dead." This type of thing is foolishness to the world but to us this is the best news we could ever receive.

What does his coming mean for us and to the world. For God's people it means forever communion with the Lord's for eternity and to others it means coming judgement and eternal torment. Similar to Noah's day when he warned the people of the coming flood. Now we warn people of fire from Heaven that will consume and destroy the Earth as we know it and people laugh. Let us all be patient in our presentation of the Gospel. Christ is the only acceptable sacrifice for our sins and is the only mediator to God. Apart for Christ' efficacious death we are lost. Psalm 136 says repeatedly "His love endures forever."

2 Peter 2 1But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them—bringing swift destruction on themselves. 2Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute. 3In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping.
4For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them into gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment; 5if he did not spare the ancient world when he brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others; 6if he condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; 7and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men 8(for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard)— 9if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment. 10This is especially true of those who follow the corrupt desire of the sinful nature and despise authority.
Bold and arrogant, these men are not afraid to slander celestial beings; 11yet even angels, although they are stronger and more powerful, do not bring slanderous accusations against such beings in the presence of the Lord. 12But these men blaspheme in matters they do not understand. They are like brute beasts, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like beasts they too will perish.
13They will be paid back with harm for the harm they have done. Their idea of pleasure is to carouse in broad daylight. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their pleasures while they feast with you. 14With eyes full of adultery, they never stop sinning; they seduce the unstable; they are experts in greed—an accursed brood! 15They have left the straight way and wandered off to follow the way of Balaam son of Beor, who loved the wages of wickedness. 16But he was rebuked for his wrongdoing by a donkey—a beast without speech—who spoke with a man's voice and restrained the prophet's madness.
17These men are springs without water and mists driven by a storm. Blackest darkness is reserved for them. 18For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of sinful human nature, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error. 19They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity—for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him. 20If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. 21It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them. 22Of them the proverbs are true: "A dog returns to its vomit," and, "A sow that is washed goes back to her wallowing in the mud."