Tag Archives: forgiveness
A Sermon Series on the Book of 2 Kings- Ch. 24
Friends: I will be doing a series of three sermons on the book of 2 Kings in April for my friends at Cedarcroft Bible Chapel in South Plainfield, NJ. So I want to go chapter by chapter through this Old Testament book. With you! I’ll put the chapter in the post and give a few comments of my own under the text. Comments always welcome! Let’s dive in!
Here we are in 2 Kings 24. Here in 2 Kings 24 we see that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon invades Judah, making Jehoiakim his vassal for three years. Jehoiakim rebels. “2 The Lord sent Babylonian, Aramean, Moabite and Ammonite raiders against him to destroy Judah, in accordance with the word of the Lord proclaimed by his servants the prophets.” This was punishment for the sins of Manasseh, esp. the shedding of innocent blood “and the Lord was not willing to forgive” (v. 4).
Jehoiachin succeeds Jehoiakim. The king of Babylon had defeated the king of Egypt. Jehoiachin, age 18, reigns in Jerusalem three months and did evil in God’s eyes as his father had done (v. 9).
Jerusalem is laid siege to it under Nebuchadnezzar w/ Nebuchadnezzar himself coming up to the city; Jehoiachin and all surrender to Nebuchadnezzar (v. 12). 13 As the Lord had declared, Nebuchadnezzar removed the treasures from the temple of the Lord and from the royal palace, and cut up the gold articles that Solomon king of Israel had made for the temple of the Lord. 14 He carried all Jerusalem into exile: all the officers and fighting men, and all the skilled workers and artisans—a total of ten thousand. Only the poorest people of the land were left. 15 Nebuchadnezzar took Jehoiachin captive to Babylon. He also took from Jerusalem to Babylon the king’s mother, his wives, his officials and the prominent people of the land. 16 The king of Babylon also deported to Babylon the entire force of seven thousand fighting men, strong and fit for war, and a thousand skilled workers and artisans. 17 He made Mattaniah, Jehoiachin’s uncle, king in his place and changed his name to Zedekiah.
Zedekiah, age 21, reigned in Jerusalem 11 years, doing evil in the Lord’s eyes. 20 It was because of the Lord’s anger that all this happened to Jerusalem and Judah, and in the end he thrust them from his presence. (v. 20).
Zedekiah rebels against the king of Babylon.
Bless-ed! 52 Blessings You Have As a Believer! (Blessing #6)
Blessing #6: The Blessing of Somewhere to Go with My Guilt
“Guilt is regret for what we’ve done. Regret is guilt for what we didn’t do.” (Mark Amend)
My friend Mike has got me thinking about what I have as a believer and what those who are lost don’t have. I can say without fear of contradiction — based on Mike’s words — that he is indeed lost and won’t (at this point) accept what God’s Word says about him.
Let’s consider another blessing that believers ought to appreciate and that is —
6. WE HAVE SOMEWHERE (BEYOND THIS WORLD) TO GO WITH OUR GUILT!
THE BLESSING “Guilt is the thief of life”, said the actor Anthony Hopkins. Of course, there’s both legitimate and illegitimate guilt. We often feel guilty about things that don’t matter. And, more to the point, we seldom feel true guilt about the things that are of God and are of eternal significance. Someone has said, “Never feel guilt while doing what’s best for you.” The problem, of course, is that we often don’t know what’s best for us.
Biblical guilt is healthy and indicates that our conscience (molded by God’s Word) is working! But we don’t need to stay in our guilt. As one author says, “We are not built for guilt, and it damages our souls and personalities — even our health.”
THE BIBLE: God’s Word has much to say about guilt. For example,
1. Some people are guilty of an eternal sin by blaspheming the Holy Spirit (Mk. 3:29).
2. Tragedies in life are not necessarily the result of personal sin or guilt (Lk. 13:4).
3. Guilt remains on those who claim they can see spiritually, but reject Christ (Jn. 9:41).
4. Both Jesus’ words and works condemn as guilty those who reject Him (Jn. 15:22, 24).
5. One who takes communion in an unworthy manner is guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord (I Cor. 11:27).
6. The believer’s heart of guilt can by cleansed by repentance and a faith in the Lord (Heb. 10:22).
7. Failing to keep one point of the law means one is guilty of breaking the whole law (Ja. 2:10).
8. The Old Testament gives much material on what is called the guilt offering for sin (see Lev. 5).
The believer in the Lord Jesus has somewhere to go with his or her guilt. And that somewhere is a SOMEONE! Because our sins are forgiven by Christ, we can confess our shortcomings and ask for His restoration.
ACTION STEPS: 1. Read over the verses mentioned above in the list this week. How would you define biblical guilt? How is biblical guilt a good thing?
2. Consider confessing to your unsaved friend something you have done or said for which you have found forgiveness before the Lord. Explain why you are confident the Lord has forgiven you.
3. Read the following article “What Does the Bible Say about Guilt?” found at https://www.gotquestions.org/Bible-guilt.html and email a friend sometime this week about what you’ve learned.
PRAYER: 4. Pray for your friend to come under the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Pray that he would experience biblical guilt and ask your help in confessing his sin and trusting Christ.
Bless-ed! 52 Blessings You Have As a Believer! (Blessing #2)
Blessing #2: The Blessing of the Assurance of Forgiveness
“In the shadow of my hurt forgiveness feels like a decision to reward my enemy. But in the shadow of the cross, forgiveness is merely a gift from one undeserving soul to another. Forgiveness is the gift that insures my freedom from a prison of bitterness and resentment. When I accept forgiveness from God, I’m free from the penalty of my sin. When I extend forgiveness to my adversary, there’s a sense in which I am set free from his sin as well.” (Andy Stanley)
I’ve been thinking recently about what believers in Jesus have and what my unsaved friends don’t have in not knowing the Lord Jesus as their Savior. My friend Mike chooses to think of himself as not lost, as not being outside the family of God.
Please don’t misunderstand me. Mike is a great guy. He is giving, kind, compassionate, but utterly deceived about his status before a holy God. And therefore, I’m so thankful for God’s Word telling me the truth about my need of a Savior. A Savior who can forgive me.
I heard one man say, “I don’t mind forgiving and forgetting. I just don’t want the one I’m forgiving to forget that he has been forgiven.” The blessing we want to focus on today is that of having our sins taken care of by Jesus on the cross. For, when I think of what we have in Christ . . .
2. WE HAVE THE ASSURANCE OF FORGIVENESS!
THE BLESSING How audacious of Christians to claim their sins have been eternally forgiven by God, that they are now in His family, and that He will never turn away from them! But that’s what the Bible, God’s Word, promises to all who turn to Him in faith.
THE BIBLE Because the Bible is our final authority for what we believe, we can be assured of our permanent forgiveness by God. We read that it is in Christ “in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Col. 1:14). We can be thankful with the Psalmist who declares, “But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you” (Ps. 130:4). We learn that the Lord Jesus came for sinners “to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in [Christ]” (Acts 26:18). Even the prophets spoke about the coming Savior “that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name” (Acts 10:43). But the hard fact is that forgiveness is found only in Christ. And if one doesn’t have Him, one doesn’t have it.