Sunday September 9, 2018
Title: Ephesians: Prescript (1:1-2) - Jesus says, “Peace to you.” (part 2)
Scripture closely connects sin to sorrow and distress and also connect righteousness and the gospel to peace.
I return to this point that we finished with on Friday for the purpose of reminder and completion. The message of Isaiah is as pertinent to the Jews in the 7th century B.C. as it is to us today. Israel was given a choice and so is everyone in the present world. Yeshua is known everywhere, He is proclaimed to the four corners of the earth just as He instructed His disciples to do.
The proclamation of Christ is life in Him through His sacrifice on the cross. The gospel is the good news of life through Him alone. The unbeliever sins against the gospel and essentially his Creator since it is God’s will that all men be saved.
The believer can still allow sin to cause sorrow and distress in his life. People often want to quantify this truth by answering the questions of how much sin and what kind of sins. We do this because we desire neat, compressed principles that fit our finite and simple minds (face it, we’re all finite and simple), and we understand that none of us will ever be sinless. Each believer knows, if he is not deceiving himself in arrogance, if his sin is causing distress and sorrow in a way that interferes greatly with his walk with God. All he need be is honest with himself. He doesn’t need a formula.
Many scriptures show that sin and sorrow are closely connected as are sin and distress of life. And, many scriptures also closely connect peace and righteousness as well as peace and the gospel.
God could have put a stop to sin and suffering at the fall, but He decided to let them run their course until the proper time. At the right time Jesus took all sin upon Himself.
The impact of sin upon the human soul is enormous. Because we are forgiven of all sin and cleansed does not lessen the damage that it does to ourselves and others.
ROM 6:12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body that you should obey its lusts,
ROM 6:13 and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.
ROM 6:14 For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law, but under grace.
ROM 8:5 For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.
ROM 8:6 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace,
ROM 8:7 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so;
ROM 8:8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
ROM 8:9 However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you.
GAL 6:6 And let the one who is taught the word share all good things with him who teaches.
GAL 6:7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.
GAL 6:8 For the one who sows to his own flesh shall from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit shall from the Spirit reap eternal life.
GAL 6:9 And let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we shall reap if we do not grow weary.
GAL 6:10 So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all men, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.
EPH 5:6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.
EPH 5:7 Therefore do not be partakers with them;
EPH 5:8 for you were formerly darkness, but now you are light in the Lord; walk as children of light
EPH 5:9 (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth),
EPH 5:10 trying to learn [proving] what is pleasing to the Lord.
We are warned and entreated time and time again in the scripture not to be engaged in sin. We are told that sin is death itself. Grace does not diminish sin’s punch. Grace allows us to deal with the blows given by sin and to overcome the sin nature’s drive to oppose all that is good.
ISA 57:14 And it shall be said,
"Build up, build up, prepare the way,
Remove every obstacle out of the way of My people."
ISA 57:15 For thus says the high and exalted One
Who lives forever, whose name is Holy,
"I dwell on a high and holy place,
And also with the contrite and lowly of spirit
In order to revive the spirit of the lowly
And to revive the heart of the contrite.
ISA 57:16 "For I will not contend forever,
Neither will I always be angry;
For the spirit would grow faint before Me,
And the breath of those whom I have made.
ISA 57:17 "Because of the iniquity of his unjust gain I was angry and struck him;
I hid My face and was angry,
And he went on turning away, in the way of his heart.
ISA 57:18 "I have seen his ways, but I will heal him;
I will lead him and restore comfort to him and to his mourners,
ISA 57:19 Creating the praise of the lips.
Peace, peace [Shalom, shalom] to him who is far and to him who is near," [EPH 2:17]
Says the Lord, "and I will heal him."
ISA 57:20 But the wicked are like the tossing sea,
For it cannot be quiet,
And its waters toss up refuse and mud.
ISA 57:21 "There is no peace," says my God, "for the wicked."
Isa 40-48: Comfort of Yavah which comes through the Suffering Servant. “No peace for the wicked.”
Isa 49-57: Salvation of Yavah which comes through the Suffering Servant. “No peace for the wicked.”
If you reject the Suffering Servant then you reject God. There is no room for the acceptance of God, as in God the Father, and rejecting the Son of God as Savior. The Unitarian, the JW, the Mormon, the Muslim, the Jew who rejects Jesus, and many others who reject His deity, do not accept God. They accept their own limited idea of God and reject the deity of Christ and the saving work of Christ.
When an Israelite believed Yavah as their Redeemer and they viewed the animal sacrifices that pictured the means of redemption, it was a given that they would be lowly in spirit and contrite in heart. When an Israelite rejected this he continued to worship idols and seek unjust gain, and by this, his sin caused great harm to himself and other, and essentially the entire nation.
The entire controversy boils down to Israel’s controversy with God concerning the Suffering Servant, the Root of Jesse, the Man of Sorrows. The Lamb of God would take away the sins of the world. God alone was their Redeemer, but their lust for things and idols was their choice above Him. How could any of them accept Yavah as their Redeemer and continue to worship idols and completely reject His Law?
Sin and evil connect to sorrow and distress. The Gospel connects to righteousness and peace.
The third division, Isa 58-66, of this second section (40-66) ends with the reality of this choice amongst men.
ISA 66:22"For just as the new heavens and the new earth
Which I make will endure before Me," declares the Lord,
"So your offspring and your name will endure.
ISA 66:23 "And it shall be from new moon to new moon
And from sabbath to sabbath,
All mankind will come to bow down before Me," says the Lord.
ISA 66:24 "Then they shall go forth and look
On the corpses of the men
Who have transgressed against Me.
For their worm shall not die,
And their fire shall not be quenched;
And they shall be an abhorrence to all mankind."