Sunday, June 3, 2012

Longstreet Café Drink Cups and Your Eternal Destiny

                Longstreet Café Drink Cups and Your Eternal Destiny

After eating a great summer lunch last week at the well known Longstreet Café in Gainesville (meatloaf, mashed potatoes, white gravy, slaw, big biscuit and chocolate cake pudding if you must know), my nephew Claxton said it was cool that the Ten Commandments were printed on the restaurant’s big Styrofoam to-go cups during our family outing.

After a way to big lunch we all talked about it.
Why should the Ten Commandments be seen anywhere?
Politicians go nuts about posting or not posting The Ten Commandments in our local court houses. 
They seem appropriate and are our moral code right?
We are told in school that The Ten Commandments are the heritage of the Jew, Christian and the Muslim.
Are they really?
Let’s see.

Exodus 19:1-21 contains The Moral Law of God or Ten Commandments.
We try to live up to them.
We think wrongly that there is a scale of justice, like in our American justice system and we will weigh our good deeds with our bad. 
And we usually think “Hey I have done a lot more good than bad.” 
Our conclusion is we are made right with God by our deeds. 
This is what much of modern Christianity proposes as faith. 
The Law then becomes “Ten Nice Character Traits.” 
#1- No other gods, #2 -No idols, #3 - Do not dishonor God’s name,
#4 - Keep God ‘Sabbath, #5 - Honor parents, #6 -  No murder,
 #7 - No adultery, #8  -Do not steal, #9  - Do not lie, #10 - Do not covet.

The Commandments then become a recipe.
A Recipe for what?
Your best life now?
Wrongly viewed the Commandments are a recipe for how to go to Hell.

You might  think “That’s not right the Ten Commandments are good.”
You would be right. 
But many view the Commandments wrong.
So what does the Bible say about the Commandments?

Galatians 3:23-25 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
“23 But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. 24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.”

The Ten Commandments are our “tutor”. 
The King James Version says The Law is our “schoolmaster”.
So what does the Ten Commandments do?

The Ten Commandments are the world’s largest Christian tract to turn the Jew, Muslim, Hindu, every religion practitioner and atheist to Christ for forgiveness of sins violating God’s law and salvation.

The Law shows us we cannot keep it's commands.
We then must look somewhere else for salvation.

There will not be a popular vote on our merits for our eternal destiny.
We are not under a democracy.
God made His Son a King for a Kingdom.
The King judges on righteousness.
Scripture says in Romans 3:10 there is no one righteous, no not one.
 The King will decree who will be in His Kingdom.
Only the King and Judge of eternity can declare us righteous.
But how?

The how is in the cross of Christ.

The Great Evangelist, Jesus, was approached in town by the most respected and admired man in the community.

Luke 18:18-27New American Standard Bible (NASB)

18  A ruler questioned Him, saying, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 19 And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good except God alone. 20 You know the commandments, ‘ Do not commit adultery, Do not murder, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother.’”

Jesus took the man to commandments 7,6,8,9,5. 
The man was arrogant as he said he had kept  all of The Law.

                “21 And he said, “All these things I have kept from my youth.”

Jesus then took the man to Commandment number one
“Thou shall No other gods before me.”
The “best’ of us had another god – his status.

“22 When Jesus heard this, He said to him, “One thing you still lack; sell all that you possess and distribute it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”

In his arrogance the “best” man in the community had proven he could not keep The Law.
The “best” of us could not keep even one of the Ten Commandments.

“23 But when he had heard these things, he became very sad, for he was extremely rich.”

The man left, he turned away from Christ, he wanted eternal life to go along with his envied lifestyle he already possessed - that lifestyle was his god.  
The man did not want Jesus Christ and His righteousness.

Jesus had earlier said on the Sermon on the Mount that if you even hate you are a murderer. 
If a man has lustful thoughts he is an adulterer.
We cannot keep some or any of The Law
The Law condemns and turns men to Christ if they are humbled. 
The Law turns you away if you are arrogant and hard of heart.

“24 And Jesus looked at him and said, “ How hard it is for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God! 25 For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” 26 They who heard it said, “Then who can be saved?” 27 But He said, “ The things that are impossible with people are possible with God.”

Jesus was approached later by another man. 
Jesus met a person, a condemned death row felon, representing the worst of men. 
We know the man as “The thief on the cross.”
The thief was humbled. 
He knew he had broken God’s law and deserved eternal punishment.
He was ready to receive grace.
Jesus Christ gave him grace, forgiveness and salvation and eternal life.

 Luke 23:39-43  New American Standard Bible (NASB)
39  One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!” 40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” 43 And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”

The best of us, “the rich ruler”, could not keep The Law. 
He walked away from Jesus.
The “worst” of us, “The thief on the cross” , a death row man being executed, received grace and eternal life in Heaven.  
Christ makes us righteous in the eyes of God. 
Christ became our sin on the cross. 
He took our sin when we repent and turn to him in faith. 
We believe Christ took the wrath of God intended for us sinners. 
By grace God gives us forgiveness of sins, peace with God and and citizenship in Heaven. 
We are saved from God’s wrath intended for us sinners  by God through Jesus who atoned our sins on the cross and declared His people righteous.
After His victorious resurrection He sits at the right hand of His father on His throne.

The Ten Commandments is the biggest Christian evangelism tract ever.
The Law turns us to Christ as we are hopeless in obtaining righteousness through The Law.
Obey the direction The Law sends you.
Repent and believe the gospel.

John 1:17
“17 For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.”

In Christ Alone!

Fletcher Law

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