Sundays Sermon Notes… What a GREAT Message!

I really wish that everyone I know could have heard Sunday’s message.   The Pastor at the church we’ve been visiting for the last couple months had quad by-pass a few weeks ago.  He had been working on this sermon before then.  While he was in Florida for the Ligoneer Ministries conference.  This was his first Sunday back in the pulpit.  I’m so thankful God gave this man more time on this earth.  He is a powerful preacher and an amazing man.   
I have copied my notes but still don’t think they do the sermon complete justice.  I pray that the essence of the sermon is evident. The Pastor said so much more that is not in my notes that was soooooo good. I need to see if they tape and if I can get a copy and listen to it again and again.
"Christ’s Greatest Trophy"
John 1:29-34
He first talked John’s declaration "Behold, the Lamb of God" And how we must stop and look to see that Christ is our Sacrifice. That we must submit to what He will do, and that he is our Sin Offering, that comes by the power of the Holy Spirit. We must also tell others that he is the Son of God.

We see this take place in action at the cross (this is where it started to get REALLY good).
(Luke 23:39-43)

*The thief saw the Lamb
*He embraced him as Lord
*He obtained eternal life (today, you shall be with me in paradise).

A. Even when Christ was hanging on the cross in pain and suffering, he had the power and willingness to save sinners.

B. There are those that are saved at the very hour of death and there are those that are not.

Of the 2 thieves on the cross, only one was saved.

1. Repentance and faith are the gifts of God, and cannot be done in man’s power. We cannot repent on our time, only in God’s time.

2. No one has the right to take liberties with God’s mercy and presume that they will be able to repent when they like.

3. Pray now for conviction of your soul for one day your prayers will come too late.
He then talked about Esau selling his birthright, he was rejected and didn’t have a chance to repent of that act and reclaim his birthright.

C. The Holy Spirit gives abundant proof of His work in the theif’s heart. He always leads souls to heaven in the same manner.

1. The thief had very strong faith.
a. He believed Christ had the power to save with all sufficiency
b. He believed Christ was innocent and undeserving.
c. He believed Christ would provide a kingdom for him.

2. Notice this man saw nothing of what the disciples saw, still he believed.
3. Notice the kind of man he was.
  a. This man was a wicked man
  b. He was a dying man
  c. He had the marks of a believing man:
     1. He had a right sense of Christ (he feared God)
     2. He had a right sense of sin (knew that Christ could forgive sins)
     3. He had the right sense of compassion (showed it to the other thief)
     4. He had the evidence of grace (concerned for others)
     5. He exhibited true repentance

D. Believers when they die are with the Lord.
E. Eternity is only ONE BREATH away for every man. ( he then spoke of his bypass experience)
Eternity is accomplished in an instant, and is something which is near. There can be no salvation after death.

Conclusion:

1.To the humble and contrite sinner, see what the penitent thief did and do likewise.

2. To the proud and presumptious of this world, TAKE WARNING. and see how the inpenitent thief died and turn from your sinful ways

3. To the professing believer in Christ, Look to the penitent thief’s religion as a measure to prove your own. See that you know something of true repentance and saving faith of real humility and ferverent love.

4. To those that mourn over a departed believer, your beloved departed ones are in the best of hands (He used the example of the old Allstate commercial and speculated that they used hands because of the strength implied).

"No ones hand is stronger than the Fathers hand!" (I LOVED this quote).

They cannot be better off. Feel sad that they’re gone, but don’t selfishly mourn for their return. REJOICE rather that they are forever free from what trouble they may have had and have entered into complete and final rest.

5. To the aged servant of Christ,
Look and see from these verses how near you are to home. Your salvation is nearer than when you firt believed. Awaken and revel with th is thought that in a few more days of labor and sorrow, and the King of kings will send for you, and in a moment your warfare shall be at an end and all shall be peace at last.

Both men were wicked.

One repented.

One reviled Christ.

One received eternal life

One received eternal ****ation

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