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April 8, 2022 8:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. How many of you good people over all these years of said things to me like this either. I did forgive but or I would forget, but but nothing Jesus by that I have good reason not you don't CS Lewis said this to be Christian needs to forgive the inexcusable because God has forgiven the inexcusable and you see that's grace joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana pastor Bill Gebhardt now shows us how God's word. Our world well should have been uncomfortable with Jesus, but she is overwhelmed by Nicodemus should've love being with Jesus, the finest regarding see that's the way it is, then that's the way it is now, and that's the way it's always been. Jesus Christ is full of grace and truth that repels some people and attracts other people and it's always been that way, but the main point is this. Good people really struggle with the grace of God. Good people they struggle back in the fourth century there were two great theologians, one's name was Pelagius and Pelagius was a wonderful man.
I brought up in a fine home well trained. He was moral Hon. and most of all, extremely popular. There was another man. His name was Augustine or Augustine. Whichever way you'd want to say it, and with Augustine. It was quite different. Augustine wasted his youth and immorality. He had a bizarre relationship with his mom and he had enemies everywhere but he got the grace of God because he got the grace of God.
Everything went right for him and Pelagius was a good person who was committed to human effort. He thought you got into the kingdom of God, much like Nicodemus must've thought he thought he had it all out and Nicodemus gave the example Pelagius takes it to fruition, and Pelagius becomes a heretic, believing that you work your way you good your way to heaven.
See that's just it. Grace is very very difficult for good people. The people were nothing like him. Judah in the Old Testament Rahab Mary Magdalene Matthew the tax gathers that Kia's general tax together. They love Jesus. They can write to them people like Nicodemus, Saul of Tarsus Pharisees priest Sadducees good people they struggle. They were repelled by Jesus's message. Grace attracts truth repels question when you identify with you more like Nicodemus, are you more like the one of the well is the only put it this way, you good person because she is a good person, even a believer, I believe you struggle with grace, not in the sense of being forgiving yourself that you struggle with grace and Jesus must believe that to because he speaks directly to us about it, telling me now to Matthew chapter 20 Matthew chapter 20 and he gives us a general illustration and see how you deal with this. Matthew 20 and verse one for the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard.
There would've been terrorist and working the vineyard was seasonal and it was always hard work kinda backbreaking you had to go hire the people for the vineyard and so Jesus says that's what this guy does it says and when he had agreed with the laborers for Dinero's for the day. He sent them into the vineyard. Now we don't get that. But it was big and Jesus time he decided to give each person at 6 o'clock in the morning who came Dinero's that is a Roman soldier's days work.
Now we don't think much of that, but that's a lot more money than a person are usually 10 vineyards get. He's been well paid. There getting a Dinero's for a days work. I imagine they jumped right at it within Jesus now continues then went about the third hour which you be 9 o'clock in the morning. He saw others standing idle in the marketplace and of those, he said, you also going to the vineyard and whatever is right, I will give you and so they went. That's all he said well that says anyone about the sixth hour noon in the ninth hour at 3 o'clock and I went and then it was about. He says, and about the 11th hour five in the afternoon work day ends at six at five in the afternoon.
He says he went on he found others standing around and he said to them why you been standing idle all day long and they said to him because no one hired us and he said to them, going to the vineyard to an they went so we have guys hired at 6 o'clock for days work for Dinero's.
Then we have guys hired and he said I'll make it right with you the end of the day at nine noon 35 when evening came, the owner, the vineyard said it was foreman call the laborers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last group 1st. The reason is doing that is he wants to see the reaction of the first group and when those hired about the 11th hour came, each one of them received the Dinero's data started five ended at six.
Now you made a deal with him that you will start at six work too hard work for the nurse. Good pay and you get a Dinero's knob started six in the morning how you feel because your good person and I was a good person feel at 6 o'clock in the evening when the money is being handed out see how would you react I'm sure very much like they did while noticeable it is when they received it is says when those who first came I love the response in verse 10, they thought that they would receive more hey this is good news. He gave the nurse for an hour we were here 12 hours. This can be great, but each of them received it and there's and when they receive it they grumble to the landowner saying these last men have worked only one hour and you have made them equal for us who have borne the burden of the scorching heat of the day and he answered he said to them, friend, I'm doing to you. Nothing wrong. He says did you not agree with me for Dinero's.
He's a take what is yours and go but I wish to give. He said to this last man, the same as to you is not lawful for me to do what I wish, with what is my own for sure.
I envious because I am generous so the last verse of the first last night, Jesus teaching at the parable form is making a really good point. You see what you want to say in that story. If you started at six not fair. That's what you want to say right. Not fair.
I mean, you know that we we live for your good people you live for fairness if you had more than one child. You try to break a candy bar and half not fair that's not fair were really in the furnace. Good people love fairness from what's interesting about that is, is that Jesus Christ point is what happens when somebody comes at the 11th hour. I think of someone like Timothy.
Timothy is one of the great young pastors in the New Testament and Paul was so impressed. Let me take someone as part of the Pauline team and he says the Timothy Timothy you were taught the Scriptures as a small child by your mother or grandmother.
Timothy probably was always right with God. I imagine Timothy was a very moral young man middle-age man and probably old man. Timothy is a good man that was Timothy.
And guess what Timothy is today heaven to he's in heaven now what you think of the thief on the cross.
He's been crucified by the Romans and the reason is been crucified by the Romans. He's committed capital offense is likely the murder somebody and he is dying and he even assesses himself justly and he's on the cross and by the way how repentant was he how much repentance did you see from the thief on the cross and we dedicate his life know I did have opportunity for that he could worry about what he was going to do tomorrow.
He was gonna be dead today. All he said was, remember me were seen today she were see Timothy, who was right as whole life with God. And this man sees an amazing thing you think of someone like Stephen. This great young first martyr who was a Gentile who was a proselyte Jew and then became one of the early deacons in the church and he gave this phenomenal sermon. One of the best I have ever read in the Bible other than the words of Jesus Christ and as a result of it. He is stoned to death and then you have Saul Parsons who was right there watching all this gloating over this happy to see this young man martyred who devoted the rest of beginning of his life and from that point on, of hunting down the church in arresting and making as bad as a good for believers but then he encountered the grace of God were see today. You see, that's the grace of God is us who are you, that's the whole point core you he says to make a difference with it soon as you think, is that is fair or not fair.
You realize that people can live lives of making the wrong choice at the wrong choice all through their life and come to Christ right at the very end and they go to the same place you do, and they're just as wonderfully saved as you are single people struggle with that and by the way, don't struggle that you're going to struggle with this turn to Matthew 18.
Turn to Matthew 18 and the reason I say that is probably not any of us are much better men than Peter was. And Peter struggled with it so much that Jesus gave him a scathing parable because of his response seat. One of the things about God.
Grace is wonderful. It's a free gift. You just can receive it. But God's expectation is that if your recipient of grace he expects you to be a dispenser of grace. See if you received forgiveness.
He expects you to forgive that goes with it. I mean after all. And so Jesus is explaining at the disciples in verse 21 Peter came to him and he said Lord, how often shall I he said so my brother sin against me and I forgive them Peter's forgiveness.
What people do me wrong hurt me. So you gotta love Peter is going to try to impress the Lord. He says the seven times, but by way the Jewish standard three, the parasitic standard three. By the way were pretty much into the one standard on me and I want I mean by that is you. You know our own modern proverb you know. If you do me dirt once right. Shame on you, but if you do me twice shame on me. Jesus would be to impress and Jesus says I do not save you up to 7×70×7.
It doesn't mean that is 490. For those of you were a know enough to want to keep a list that I notebook he means infinitely.
He's so moved by Peter's response that he gives a parable in the parable is full of hyperbole. It's all exaggeration but is to make his point.
He said for this reason, the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his slaves and when he began to settle them one who owed him 10,000 talents was brought to him that you know is hyperbole because there's no slave. It's got $10,000. In fact, Solomon's Temple with all that was in it was valued at 8000 talents so you don't have a slave at 10,000 talents. They tried all kinds of ways to convert the money I've seen. It is a little more than the up the $10 billion.
It doesn't matter. Jesus and trying to come up with a mind he's trying to say that this is this a story, but this is an amount so amazing that we can possibly imagine. It in fact when I read about Solomon's temple. I read that Solomon only one of his best years took in 666 talents of gold in one year. Never Solomon is the richest man on earth at the time and so this is 10,000 talents. A notice it's a slave, he said, but since he did not have a means to repay, his Lord commanded him to be sold, along with his wife and children already had, and repayment to be made that when human touch. This any sense of the sleigh phone. The grantor prostrated himself before him, is that patients may now I'm glad repay you everything. And the Lord of that slave felt compassion any released him and for gamers that he saying this to Peter and he saying this to you and to me who's the sleigh you me, what's the debt so great we can't pay it. You see we can't pay the debt we owe what we owe.
God is so immeasurable. Our sins are so many so deep seated so many you can't pay it back. You can't do restitution. He said, but that slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves who owed him 100 and I about 1/10000 of what he owed and he seized him and began to choke him, saying, pay back what you owe. So the fellow slave fell to the ground and began to plead with him, saying that patients me and I'll repay you now watch, but he was unwilling anyone operates room in prison until he should pay back what he was old and by the way, it's all hyperbole because how would you raise the money in prison.
The pay it back anyway, that's not the issue with Jesus is saying is Peter. How dare you, how can I forgive you so much and you don't forgive others. How can you be a recipient of grace. How can you do that, how can you receive grace and not distributed to somebody else. Pulpits right up on any fusion says we should forgive as Christ has forgiven us as a grab you. You see, I can't tell you how many of you good people over all these years of said things to me like this either.
I did forgive but or I would forgive but but nothing Jesus and by that not all. I have good reason not to know you don't CS Lewis said this to be Christian, means the forgive the inexcusable because God has forgiven the inexcusable and you see that's grace and notice Philip Yancey calls Jesus words in this parable atrocious and they are to good people see good people really really struggle to get their arms around grace and the reason is we live in an un-grace world you were schooled program indoctrinated with ungrace. That's how it worked me think of these sayings, the early bird gets the worm is a true was a thief on the cross, the early bird know he was a convert at 559 in the evening. That's when he converted no pain no gain, no pain, no gain.
Gotta sacrifice like you want anything strewn a certain extent, but that's not grace that's not grace. Grace is total gain in his pain, not yours. There's no such thing as a free lunch. You heard that that's not grace that's ungrace see people get what they deserve that even really happens is justice, but that's certainly not grace seems to of our worldview, but not grace, not grace when I think of grace. I do not get what I deserve all of sin and fall short of the glory of God that includes me.
The wages of sin is death. That includes me and instead of getting death I get life.
I deserve justice and punishment, and I got forgiveness I deserve the wrath of God and got the love of God. That's grace. That's the scandalous mathematics of grace as Philip Yancey says the scandalous mathematics of grace is exactly right in the beauty of it is everybody's invited the people worn by Jesus and the people are like Jesus there all invited good people, bad people, religious people and religious people are all invited. But the truth of the matter is, as those who are the most not like Christ are more attracted to it than those of the summa services seem to be a lot like Christ.
Good people struggle with the concept of the grace of God. You can have somebody like Dwight Pentecost, who still Dallas seminary still teaching in his 90s. The word of God and one of the finest teachers of the word of God I've ever heard. And he was asking the class that I was attending to give his testimony and he said I have one of the great testimonies you ever hear.
We all perked up and we can wait to hear it and Dr. Pentecost simply said this, I do not remember a moment in my life when I did not trust Jesus Christ. Not a moment. He said I my parents were devout. I was introduced to the Lord as soon as I was a little boy and I have no recollection of when I never believed in Jesus Christ and decided that a great testimony really is. I think that when Dr. Pentecost goes where is he going to going to heaven that I think of a man what a conversation with me that his church had a prison ministry and in that prison ministry, they were able to visit on death row. Jeffrey Dahmer and one of the men in their church was able to leave Jeffrey Dahmer to Jesus Christ, the great irony but by the way when I got back to the church.
Many people in the church were upset see you know who was upset the good people, good people always upset by something like this. Now, no, no, but by the way, if he truly put his trust in Jesus Christ worse.
Jeffrey Gomer today. He's worked quite Pentecost will be soon.
See, that's the scandalous mathematics of grace. That's the grace of God. Everything we learned this morning if you like receiving God's forgiveness and you need to give it to others and by the way, good people struggle with this very idea.
These are my words.
By the way, these are the words of Jesus Christ, and as John said he was full of grace and truth. And on a certain level. It wasn't fair.
It was much better than fair. It was grace spring. Father, I love the apostle Paul's statement when he says I am what I am by the grace of God and even though he was a good religious man, he finally came to the understanding there was nothing he could do to write his standing with you. Father I pray this morning.
If there are some good people here this morning who believe in their heart that somehow God will be impressed that they are just good enough to be better than some of the others that he will let them into heaven based on their goodness, I'm here to tell them the Jesus Christ said that's not true that all of us enter heaven exactly the same way as forgiven sinners. All of us punch the same ticket. Jesus said I am the way and the truth and the life and no one I mean no one comes to the father but through me. Father, I also realize that as believers in Jesus Christ.
It is so much easier for us to accept the grace of God in our own lives and be grateful for it and thankful for. But when it comes to being dispensers of grace in the lives of others.
We have a tendency not to. We have a tendency to be judgmental and rigid and even more tragically unforgiving. So father I pray that if there's some issue of unforgiveness that's harboring in any of us this morning, your spirit would convict us of us and realize we have no ground to stand on the being unforgiving forgiven believer. Father, I think for the scandalous mathematics of the grace Jesus pastor Bill Gebhardt on the radio ministry of fellowship in the if you ever miss one of our broadcast or maybe you just like listening to the message one more time. Remember, you can Google a great website called one place.com that's one place.com and you can listen to Fellowship in the Word online that website you will find on with today's broadcast but also many of our previous audio programs as well Fellowship in the Word.
We are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible. We ask all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help with radio ministry continuous broadcast on this radio station by supporting us monthly with just a one-time gift support for ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word. 4600 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie, LA 7006 if you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format that is is a sermon, the pastor Bill delivered during a Sunday morning service at Fellowship Bible church visit our website FVC Nola.org that FVC 10 oh LA not owe Argie at our website you will find hundreds pastor Bill sermon you can browse through our sermon archives to find the sermon series you're looking for or you can search by title. Once you find the messenger looking for. You can listen online or if you prefer, you can download the sermon and listen at your own. And remember all this absolutely free of charge. Once again our website is FVC Nola.org forecaster Bill Gebhardt and Jason Gebhardt. Thank you for listening to fellowship in order