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Sept 2, 2017 The Need for Christ (Brian Simko)

The Need For Christ

 

The Fall    Genesis 3:1-7

​ Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made.       

He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?”  And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden,  but God said, You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’”  But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.  For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”  So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.  Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.

Adam and Eve were sinless, they could walk with God, see God and not die. Not anymore!

We were designed to live in this world in fellowship with God. Now sin becomes a hinderance to that fellowship.

 Cain and Abel    Genesis 4:1-8

​ Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, saying, “I have gotten a man with the help of the Lord.”  And again, she bore his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, and Cain a worker of the ground.  In the course of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the ground,  and Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions. And the Lord had regard for Abel and his offering,  but for Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his face fell.  The Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen?  If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it.”

  Cain spoke to Abel his brother. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him.  obviously not ruling over sin.

Adams family line    Genesis 5:24

Adam, Seth, Enosh, Kenan, Mahalalel, Jared,

When Enoch had lived 65 years, he fathered Methuselah.  Enoch walked with God after he fathered Methuselah 300 years and had other sons and daughters.  Thus all the days of Enoch were 365 years.  Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.

Enoch was the only one mentioned that, "walked faithfully with God".

  When Methuselah had lived 187 years, he fathered Lamech.  Methuselah lived after he fathered Lamech 782 years and had other sons and daughters.  Thus all the days of Methuselah were 969 years, and he died. 

No one has lived longer than Methuselah.

  When Lamech had lived 182 years, he fathered a son  and called his name Noah, saying, “Out of the ground that the Lord has cursed, this one shall bring us relief from our work and from the painful toil of our hands.”

After this, the Lord said, “My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.”

Wickedness in the World    Genesis 6:5-13

The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.  And the Lord regretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart.  So the Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them.”  But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.

 Noah and the Flood

 Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.  And Noah had three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

  Now the earth was corrupt in God's sight, and the earth was filled with violence.  And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth.  And God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh, for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth.

After the distruction of the earth (the flood) was over.

Then Noah built an altar to the Lord and took some of every clean animal and some of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar.  And when the Lord smelled the pleasing aroma, the Lord said in his heart, “I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man's heart is evil from his youth. Neither will I ever again strike down every living creature as I have done.  While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.”

Now we move into Exodus. The Isrealites are living in Egypt.

Exodus 1:8-11

Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph.  And he said to his people, “Behold, the people of Israel are too many and too mighty for us.  Come, let us deal shrewdly with them, lest they multiply, and, if war breaks out, they join our enemies and fight against us and escape from the land.”  Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with heavy burdens.

The Lord brought up Moses to lead the people out of Egypt and into the Promised land, a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey.

In Leviticus- The central message is that God is holy and he requires his people to be holy. The book also shows that God graciously provides atonement for sin through the shedding of blood.

The English title “Numbers” comes from the two censuses that are central features of the book. However the Hebrew title, “In the Wilderness,” is more descriptive of the book. Numbers tells how God’s people traveled from Mount Sinai to the border of the Promised Land. But when they refused to take possession of the Land, God made them wander in the wilderness for nearly forty years. Despite seeing many miracles-- Cloud by day, pillar of fire by night, water from rocks, mana from heaven, quail, ect...  The people continued to sin-- complaining, worshiping idols, taking wives that were not of Gods people.

Numbers 14:11-12  And the Lord said to Moses, “How long will this people despise me? And how long will they not believe in me, in spite of all the signs that I have done among them?  I will strike them with the pestilence and disinherit them, and I will make of you a nation greater and mightier than they.”

Moses interceded for the people. Numbers 14:13-19

Numbers 14:20-24  Then the Lord said, “I have pardoned, according to your word.  But truly, as I live, and as all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the Lord,  none of the men who have seen my glory and my signs that I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and yet have put me to the test these ten times and have not obeyed my voice,  shall see the land that I swore to give to their fathers. And none of those who despised me shall see it.  But my servant Caleb, because he has a different spirit and has followed me fully, I will bring into the land into which he went, and his descendants shall possess it.

Numbers 14:26-38  And the Lord spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,  “How long shall this wicked congregation grumble against me? I have heard the grumblings of the people of Israel, which they grumble against me.  Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord, what you have said in my hearing I will do to you:  your dead bodies shall fall in this wilderness, and of all your number, listed in the census from twenty years old and upward, who have grumbled against me,  not one shall come into the land where I swore that I would make you dwell, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun.But your little ones, who you said would become a prey, I will bring in, and they shall know the land that you have rejected.  But as for you, your dead bodies shall fall in this wilderness.  And your children shall be shepherds in the wilderness forty years and shall suffer for your faithlessness, until the last of your dead bodies lies in the wilderness.  According to the number of the days in which you spied out the land, forty days, a year for each day, you shall bear your iniquity forty years, and you shall know my displeasure.’  I, the Lord, have spoken. Surely this will I do to all this wicked congregation who are gathered together against me: in this wilderness they shall come to a full end, and there they shall die.” And the men whom Moses sent to spy out the land, who returned and made all the congregation grumble against him by bringing up a bad report about the land—  the men who brought up a bad report of the land—died by plague before the Lord.  Of those men who went to spy out the land, only Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh remained alive.

Moses himself didn't make it to the Promised land because of the sin of disobedience. After the death of Joshua, a number of individuals (judges) led and decided cases among the people of Isreal.

In this time of national decline, despite their promise to keep the covenant (Josh. 24:16-18) the people turned from the Lord and began to worship other gods. “Everyone did what was right in his own eyes” (17:6; 21:25). A pattern repeats throughout the book: 1) the people abandoned the Lord; 2) God punished them by raising up a foreign power to oppress them; 3) the people cried out to God for deliverance; and 4) God raised up a deliverer, or judge, for them.

Examples: Deborah, Gidion, Abimelek, Tola, Jephthah, Samson

We see God's mercy in the repeated delivrance and forgiveness of the Isrealites. Amazing!

After that time, Samual led Isreal in combined roles of prophet, priests and judge. Then the people wanted a king to reign over them like the others. God wanted to be their king but nevertheless He did as they desired and gave them Saul. Isreal continued to have kings- some rightous but most wicked.

We can see how mankind is driven to sin throughout this period of history. We have thousands of years here where there was only a small number of those that were strong in their faith. The others were easily led astray.  Not the relationship God wanted with his people. Something had to be done, It was going to take a worthy, once and for all sacrifice to cover and cleanse the sins of the people so God could look upon them and not see their sin. They also needed a powerful helper to assist them in their persuit of righteousness.

Micah 5:2  But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for Me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose coming forth is from of old, from ancient days.Therefore He shall give them up until the time when she who is in labor has given birth; then the rest of His brothers shall return to the people of Israel.  And He shall stand and shepherd His flock in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord His God. And they shall dwell secure, for now He shall be great to the ends of the earth. And He shall be their peace. 

Isaiah 7:14    Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Acts 1:8  But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

 

You know the story of the birth of Jesus. Now we begin Jesus' call.

Mathew 3:13-17   The Baptism of Jesus

 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him.  John would have prevented him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?”  But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he consented.  And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him;  and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”

John 3:13-21   No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man.  And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,  that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.

All who died before the death of Jesus that were children of God where not in heaven with God. they were in Abraham's Bosom. Recal the story of Lazarus and the Rich Man? Luke 16:22-23

After Jesus died. Mathew 27:52  The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised

2 Corinthians 5:6-8   So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord,  for we walk by faith, not by sight.  Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord.

 

   For God So Loved the World

 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.  Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.  And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil.  For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.  But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”

 To an extent, man had to be taken out of the equation. He cannot be rightous, for his deeds are evil. So he must be washed clean and covered by the blood of Christ and given the Holy Spirit to help him walk the narrow path. Christ was also the example to fallow- instead of don't do this, and do that, Jesus showed us through his life on earth how we are to live, to do right and resist evil.

Have you ever asked yourself-- Since God knows the future, why didn't He just skip to the end? Put his Son on earth to start with?  Everything God does and the order in which He does it is for our benifit- to guide us to Him. If we are wise, we can learn a great deal from history about mankind (about ourselves). Both before and after Jesus' time on the earth. The Bible is not only a history book, it also tells us how to live now and what is coming in the future. It is living. We can see for ourselves the nature of man, how he is drawn to sin, how he struggles to be rightous, mans desire to worship something greater than himself, God's limitless unfathomable love for us and his desire for us to be with Him for eternity!

As a bit of a side note: When Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane, He was greatly distressed; because He knew He was going to suffer unimaginable pain. Physically, emotionally and spiritually. In his humaness He prayed multiple times-  “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” Mathew 26:38-39   

I beleive he may have known in His heart and mind- We have tried for thousands of years, this is the only way.