Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Evening Sermon Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/ev/ev20050605.htm
CHRIST'S PROPHETIC MESSAGE TO CONTEMPORARY EVANGELICALS
Part IV: Christ's All-Sufficiency Offered To Wean Us From Evangelicalism's Two Factions To Himself
B. Christ's Great-Cross-Before-The-Crown Solution Detailed And Applied
1. Christ's Offer To Use CALVINIST Persecutors To Wean Us From The Calvinist Faction
c. Christ's Offer To Use Calvinist Persecutors To Give Us "Eyesalve" For INSIGHT Into His Truth
Lesson: (1) Christ counsels pastors to ASK Him to ARRANGE for them to be CORNERED into CONFLICTING with ERRANT Calvinists so such pastors will start to DISCERN and UNWITTINGLY VOICE Calvinism's ERRORS. (2) Calvinists in turn SLANDER and REJECT such pastors, so the latter are DRIVEN under Christ's oversight in the process to gain ever MORE Scripture insight!
- In offering His cross-before-the-crown solution for Evangelicals, Christ suggests pastors ask Him to arrange for them to be badly persecuted by Evangelicals to wean them from Evangelicalism's corruption.
- Rev. 3:18b[c] is His offer to wean us via persecution from trust in the Calvinist wing's error to His truth.
- Christ's Offer To Use Calvinist Persecutors To Give Us "Eyesalve" For INSIGHT Into His Truth.
- Jesus counseled us to "buy from Me" third " . . . salve to put on your eyes, so you can see," 3:18b[c] NIV.
- In the previous two lessons, we learned that to "buy" anything from Christ means to gain blessing by way of God's grace, cf. T.D.N.T., vol. I, p. 126. Hence, such insight is to come by God's grace.
- To understand how one thus gains this "eyesight" by grace, we view the historical and Scripture contexts:
- The Laodiceans made a poultice from mineralized tablets that were sliced from a cylinder, reduced to powder and smeared on the eyes for health, W. Ramsay, The Letters To The Seven Churches , p. 429.
- Aside from Revelation 3:18b[c], elsewhere in Scripture, only in John 9 does Christ use a poultice on one's eyes to give him physical sight (John 9:1-7) as well as spiritual sight (cf. John 9:35-39).
- Since we learned from the Rev. 3:17 context that the "sight" Evangelicals need today is spiritual, we study the healing event in John 9 (KJV) to learn how Christ would today give US spiritual insight:
- To heal a man near the temple who had been born blind so as to gain the attention of the Pharisees who forbade healing on the Sabbath , Jesus made a poultice of saliva and dirt, put it on his eyes and sent the blind man 1/3 of a mile away through the heart of old Jerusalem to wash it off in the pool of Siloam, a pool located at the southern tip of the city, Jn. 8:59-9:7; The Mac. Bib. Atl., 1968, p. 139.
- Sure enough, the Pharisees heard about it and tried to get the man to defame Jesus for healing him on the Sabbath, but he replied, "How could a man that is a sinner do such miracles?" (Jn. 9:13-16)
- When they asked him again about Jesus, the healed man replied, "He is a prophet," John 9:17.
- Still trying to discredit Jesus, the Pharisees asked the healed man to repeat how Jesus healed him, Jn. 9:24-26. Frustrated, the man retorted, "I have told you already . . . would ye hear it again? will ye also be his disciples?" and that led to the Pharisee reaction of reviling him, John 9:28 KJV.
- In continuing to speak with the Pharisees, the former blind man said, "Since the world began was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind. If this man were not of God, he could do nothing," and that led to their excommunicating him from the synagogue, Jn. 9:31-34 KJV.
- Jesus later met the healed man to ask if he trusted in the "Son of God," referring to His deity, John 9:35; 5:18 KJV. The healed man asked who that was, so Jesus said, "Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee!" The healed man thus believed and worshipped Jesus, 9:36-38 KJV.
- So, by use of the poultice, Christ arranged for the blind man to come into a conflict with the Pharisees that would cause him to discern their error and lead to his going from seeing Jesus as a mere man to trusting in Him as God, John 9:11-38. This fit Christ's goal to give insight, Jn. 9:39.
- In application, and in accord with the last two lessons, Christ counsels us to ask Him to arrange for us to be "cornered" into theologically conflicting with errant [Calvinist] Evangelicals so we will unwittingly see and voice our observations of their errors in the process. That results in their persecuting us that only directs us under Christ's oversight to come into perceiving the full truth (1 Cor. 2:11-15; 2 Tim. 1:13-14). To handle the the persecution pain, Christ gives us His insight into God's truth with its great blessing!
Application: May we ask God for "eyesalve" to grow in our INSIGHT of the TRUTH for BLESSING!