Cecil Hutson Sermon Archive
December 5, 1999 AM
THE CROSS: A SIGN OF OUR PRIDE
2 Chron 26:16-18
INTRO: The historical record of Uzziah is a sad one. Uzziah began his reign over Judah with such promise and success. But at the zenith of his strength, pride swallowed him! His pride brought him to violate the law of God. And God caused him to suffer the fate of a leper for the rest of his life. I have mentioned Uzziah because his life plainly shows the relationship between pride and sin. With that in mind it is accurate to say that The Cross Is A Sign Of Our Pride.
I. WHY DO PEOPLE SIN?
A. Some sin is caused by ignorance
1. 1 Tim 1:13
2. but note Acts 17:30
B. Some sin is caused by peer pressure
1. Prov 1:10
2. the desire for acceptance - so strong
C. Some sin is caused by lust - desire
1. Jas 1:14,15
2. we must constantly strive to control desire
D. So much sin is caused by pride
1. listen to this: Ezek 28:2 ... Deut 8:14
2. when we decide to do as we please knowing that Gods revealed will is otherwise, pride has been our undoing, our destination
II. CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING TEXTS, THEN
A. Gen 3:5,6 Pride was part of Eves undoing!
1. ye shall be as gods
2. such an offer would cause most to consider!
B. Hos 10:5,6 Their own counsel superceded Gods
1. who needs Gods counsel - I can give my own advice
2. I know thats what the Bible says, but ...
C. Prov 14:12 Mans wisdom - leads to destruction
1. once again, the element of pride keeps one from considering Gods way
2. but people everywhere behave based on their wisdom
D. 1 Jno 2:16 Nothing has changed from Eves day
1. pride was at the first sin - pride continues as a serious root cause of sin today
2. no wonder Prov 16:18!
E. Jas 1:14 Pride, ego, personal desire are dangerous
1. but the key thing is personal
2. sin, no matter the root cause, involves a personal choice, decision .. in the main, that personal decision is wilful
F. 1 Cor 10;12 Pride is so deceptive
1. it tells us things about ourselves we want to believe ... but which are not true
2. and the cross is a stark reminder of our pride
III. THE DEMAND OF THE CROSS IS HUMILITY!
A. Phil 2:7 He emptied Himself of Himself
1. the cross stands plainly as a sign of the demand for humility
2. Jesus, who had every right to His being God, could only go to the cross in humility
B. Now note Phil 2:5
1. this same humility must be our mind/manner
2. otherwise, why would we claim the benefits of the cross?
C. Claiming the sacrifice, we must acknowledge sin!
1. listen to Isa 66:1-3 ... only when sacrifices were offered with contrite hearts were they accepted
2. so, to claim the sacrifice of Jesus in baptism, your heart must be humble ... only then is the sacrifice beneficial to you!
CLOSE: While the cross truly is a sign of pride, of inflated ego, it demands humility of all who would desire its benefits. Can you put pride behind you? Can you then come to the Christ of the cross in baptism?
Cecil A. Hutson
05 December 1999
God's Plan of Salvation
You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)
You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)
You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)
You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)
Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!
Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)