David Asscherick Sermons Transcript: Imputed Righteousness

Posted by Samuel Kadyakale  |  at  05:59 1 comment

Below is David Asscherick Sermon transcript entitled, Two Things Not Even Can Do. It is a powerful sermon tackling the Righteousness by Faith doctrine. Sinners are justified by God when in a moment the imputed righteousness of Jesus provides the repentant sinner a standing before God as though he had never sinned.The resultant peace and joy in Christ that provide the greatest possible motive and yearning to be like Him.

I have tried to be as faithful as possible in transcribing this sermon, I am however human and would welcome any suggestions for editing this transcript. I, and not the preacher, am responsible for any transcribing mistakes. Here we go with this sermon. May God be with you.

David Asscherick, Two Things Not Even God Can Do Sermon.

My presentation is titled, "Two things not even God can do". Two things that not even God can do. So let's pray together. Father in heaven we want to thank you for the privilege and the joy of knowing you. Surely the greatest adventure in all life is to know Him who is life and who has given us life.

Father we come to you and we are inviting you to be with us because you were here before we got here. We are thankful that you have invited us to be with you. Father this evening we want to study to know you better, to understand you more.

Father you know the presentation: you've been with me in its preparation. And I pray that you would take this message, father, I have time to preach just one, and that you would take this single, one size fits all message and that you would tailor make it to meet the individual needs, circumstances, situations of every person here. Father by the power of your spirit to those who are most interested, to perhaps some who are even religiously disinterested and everything in between father make this presentation through the tailor making power of your spirit become just exactly what every individual person needs.

Father you have promised to be with us. That where two or more are gathered you will be there in their midst. And father here we are, we are more than two and so we have every reason to believe, every biblical reason to believe, that you are here with us.

And so father as an act of worship especially as the Sabbath is beginning, we want to heed the admonition of Jesus to love you with all of our heart, all of our minds and all of our soul. So Father tonight we want to think about you and with you.

We want to respond to the invitation "come let us reason together". And so Father tonight as we open your word, the prayer of our heart is that you would open us, that as we open your word you would speak directly to us. And that you would press through the power of your spirit the great truths of the word upon each of us that we may respond to you in our own individual idiosyncratic way.

Father we freely admit and confess we are not the people, I am not the man, that I should be and could be. But father in the meantime, while we are growing in Christ we pray that would have clearer conceptions of the righteousness of Christ. So father tonight as we study the two things, two of the things that not even you can do, we pray that our understanding of this grand and glorious thing that we call simply the Gospel would be clear to us in a new exciting and life changing way. Be with us now oh God. as we open your word may you open us. Is the prayer of our hearts in Jesus name. Let all of God's people say amen. 

Two do things not even God can do. Nice to see you all getting your Bibles out there. I have a confession to make. I used to believe that God could do anything. I think that that is frankly a view of christian immaturity. To believe that God can do anything. I used to believe that but I no longer believe that. There are I believe a great number of things in fact that God cannot do. There are probably even some that He could and wouldn't.

Tonight I would like to share with you two things that God cannot do. The bible speaks about nothing being impossible with God. In fact here we have on the screen the dictionary definition of impossible. Mr Websters tells us the word impossible means, not able to occur or be done. That which cannot exist or cannot be done, unattainable, unachievable, unattainable. Impossible means it cannot happen. It is not a matter of it wont happen but it cannot happen.

And so when we read in scripture verses like Luke chapter 18:27 and he said, Jesus speaking, "The things that are impossible with men are possible with God"; you will notice with me that the careful reading of that text does not say that everything is possible with god. It simply says that there are certain things that men cannot do that God can do. The things that with men are impossible, there are possible with God.

There a number of things that I suppose that many of us cannot do. Possibility and impossibility are actually relative terms. For example there are things that are impossible for me to do. I cannot bench press five hundred pounds I know some of you find that surprising. I cannot run a sub four minute mile. ok. I cannot preach a fifty minute sermon so there are things that I personally cannot do but the things that that I've mentioned here bench press five hundred pounds, run a sub four minute mile, preach a sermon is under fifty minutes there are people that can do those things and so while it is impossible for me it is possible for others.

The idea of possible and impossible is relative to the individual and it is even relative to God. There are in fact things that God cannot do.  And you notice the text again It doesn't say that God can do everything but simply that there are things that man can't do that God in fact can do. But Luke chapter one verse thirty seven of this is the angel Gabriel speaking there to Mary and the angels appeared and said, you are going to conceive you're going to give birth to a child and she said how can this be seeing I know not a man. And Gabriel's response was, "with men this is impossible but with God nothing will be impossible".  But even here again even in this more emphatic affirmation of the omniscience and the omnipotence and the omniresourcefulness of God even here if you read the text carefully it does not say that God can do every thing. It just says that there are things that are impossible for man that are possible with God. 

There are in fact several things that God cannot do. For example Scripture tells us that God cannot lie. His character forbids it. God cannot make a mountain so big that he himself cannot move it. God cannot predestine the free acts of man. Did you get that. God cannot predestine or predetermine the free acts of Man. If they are pre-determined, they are not free, if they are free they are not pre-determined. God cannot make a square circle. These are two mutually exclusive geometrical figures. In fact I had one fellow ask me if God could make a square circle and I said he wouldn't.

There are a great number of things that even God with the resources of omnipotence at his disposal that he just cannot do. And scripture is absolutely unequivocal in this truth that there are things that are impossible for God. 

Now of course there are many stories in the Bible, the Bible is littered with stories in which God does the seemingly impossible, does that what everyone?- the seemingly impossible. Daniel in the Lion's Den. With men this is impossible but with God It is possible. The floating axes in the days of Elijah. With man this is impossible with God this is possible. the raising of Lazarus. With man this is impossible with God this is possible.  the feeding of the five thousand with a few loaves and fishes. Shadrach, Mishach and Abdnego going into the fiery furnace. 

The Bible is littered with stories of God doing the seemingly impossible, of transcending man's expectation and even man's capabilities so that God is able to do abundantly above and beyond all that we could ask or think. But there is even a limit for God. Man's limits of what he is capable of of what is possible to him. Maybe say this but God can extend that he can broaden those boundaries the boundaries of possibility are more elastic with God. There is a greater plasticity there but even God meets his limit at certain places there are things that even God cannot do. 

I'd like to share with you tonight two of the things that God cannot do. Open with me in your Bibles if you would to, the book of Hebrews we're going to spend most of our time tonight in the book of Hebrews. Hebrews Chapter ten we'll begin there. 

And now that we have I believe at least sufficiently framed my basic thesis that is that there are things that God cannot do. Let's get more specific and so we go to the book of Hebrews what book are we going to everyone? Hebrews.  What Testament is that in?  The New Testament, very good,  so we go to Hebrews Chapter ten. You'll find that after all of the T's, the Thessalonians Timothy's Titus and you will arrive happily at Hebrews. Hebrews Chapter ten if you would. And notice with me verse four. Hebrews Chapter ten and verse four. The Bible says, "For it is not possible"... It is not what everyone? It is not possible. So we could rephrase this as it is impossible. Right that's the equivalence it's the grammatical equivalence. It is not possible. So another way of saying it, it is impossible, it is not possible. What is not possible ? "that the blood of bulls and goats should take away or could take away sins. Now let's look at the context begin reading in verse one and read right down to verse four Hebrews chapter ten beginning of verse one, "for the law having a shadow of good things to come and not the very image of the things can never with these same sacrifices which they offer continually speaking of the animal sacrifices year by year make those who approach perfect. verse two, "for then what they not have ceased to be offered for the worshippers once purified would have had no more consciousness of sins, but in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year for it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins. 

The author of Hebrews is arguing that there was a non-ethicacy in all of the animal sacrifices that were brought to the Israelite sanctuary and he basically says if those things were really working then people would have lost consciousness of the sins that they had confessed but he says the power of the sanctuary was in its analogous illustrative power not in any actual efficacy in and of itself. He says that's not even possible. 

In fact if you were going to distill the whole book of Hebrews down to a single word. Does anyone know what that word might be? Better. That is  the thesis of the book of Hebrews. It is better. You find it over and over again in the Old Testament they have a sanctuary, we have a better sanctuary. In the Old Testament they have a priest, we have a better priest. And the Old Testament have a sacrifice, we have a better sacrifice. For the Old Testament a covenant we have a better covenant. It's always better better better better. 

And here in Hebrews Chapter ten. He says if those animal sacrifices the blood of pulls out of goats and of pigeons that of lambs and bullocks if those sacrifices were really doing something then the sinners would not have needed to come over and over and over with repetition and continue to offer those sacrifices and then he says expressly what he has already stated implicitly. It is not possible that the blood of bulls and go to take away sin. 

Now he continues this line of reasoning, jump down to verse eleven, "and every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly" offering what everyone? "repeatedly the same sacrifices which can never take away sins". The same sacrifices which can what everyone? Never take away sins. Say it with me,"which can never take away sins".  Verse twelve "but this man Jesus Christ after he had offered" How many sacrifices? "one sacrifice for sins forever sat down at the right hand of God". By the way you don't sit down until your job is done. So he he made  offering of himself once and for all and then he sat down.

Verse thirteen. "From that time waiting till his enemies are made His footstool". Verse fourteen, "for by one offering" how many offerings everyone? "one offering He has perfected for ever those who are being sanctified". 

The author of you Hebrews here is very plainly drawing out this better contrast. He points to the lack of efficacy the lack of efficiency of all of those multitudinous animal sacrifices and he says the high priest had to do it repeatedly. He had to do it over and over and over again the other priest said to make those offerings over and over again but he says this man Jesus he made just one sacrifice. Then when he was done he sat down "because by one sacrifice he has perfected for ever" those who are in the process of sanctification that's verse fourteen. 

It is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sin. I wonder why,  I wonder why? Is the Bible here simply saying that God chose not to save us this way or that he could not save us in this way. Notice with me here on the screen from Early Writings page one hundred fifty now to set the context here very quickly before we read the statement. Ellen White was given a vision and in this vision man has fallen. She sees the fall of man in vision and she says all of Heaven was filled with sadness. The angels were looking in they couldn't believe it. The enemy who has gained the victory in heaven over one thirty angels has now gained an apparent victory on earth and she says sadness filled the ranks of the angels as they look at this. 

Well in the context of this fall, the fall of man, there's this council, this divine council between the Father and the Son and implicitly the Spirit is also there. Now in this divine council you see Jesus communing with his father and then he comes out of the council, she saw all of this in vision, and the announcement is made to the assembled throng. The announcement is made to the thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands of angels that are assembled there. And the announcement is thus, a way of escape has been made for man. And all the angels are like, woohoo,  high five, woo we knew they had to do it, God is wise, God is sovereign, God is in control, the enemy may have won the battle but God will win the war. Woohoo a way of escape has been made for man woohoo. 

And then it's as if God said, "well that's not all let me tell you how?" "I wonder how he is gonna do it. Lets hear how he is gonna do it.  And they're listening and then the way that man would be saved. The way that man would be preserved is then communicated to the angels. And it goes something like this, Jesus the darling of heaven, Jesus the cheafest among ten thousand, Jesus would become a man. ooooh. He would be betrayed betrayed. He would be crucified. The angels have lost it. He would die a hideous, terrible, humiliating, ignominious death. 

Listen to this and don't miss the point she says when the way was announced, a way of escape has been announced, everyone is happy but she say, but when the way was announced they could not rejoice. They couldn't rejoice. How can you rejoice about your own king, your own sovereign going down to earth to be humiliated, to be treated spitefully, to be scornfully treated to be mocked? She says that they could not rejoice. So she says you know what they did, "angels prostrated themselves before Jesus. This is in the immediate context of this council. They offered their lives. I can just see in my minds eye. Gabriel saying far it be from you, please, no, I will go. And in my mind's eye I can see Jesus filled with the sense of appreciation, thankful as He lays His mighty hand on Gabriel and says thank you Gabriel for this offer. Thank for your willingness but even the life of an angel will not suffice. they offered their lives but Jesus said he would by his life save many, that the life of an angel could not pay the debt. 

And so when we read here in Hebrews chapter 10 verse 4, that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sin you can substitute that line "bulls and goats" with "any created being". For it is not possible that the blood of angels should take away sin. It is not possible that the blood of any created being should take away sin. In fact down there in verse eleven, "these sacrifices" that is the sacrifices of any created being, "can never take away sin". 

It's not that God has something against bulls and goats. What the author of Hebrews is saying is no created being could pay that price and it only makes sense doesn't it? God is infinite he is infinitely holy, His law is infinitely holy. And if you have the violation - the transgression of an infinitely holy law, only an infinitely Holy Sacrifice could atone for the breaking of an infinitely holy law. 

There are only two kinds of beings in the universe, necessary beings and contingent beings. Every person in this room is a contingent being. Your non existence is possible. You only exist because of God. Your existence is contingent upon God having made you. Every being in the universe except one is a contingent being. Their existence is contingent upon God. God is the only necessary being in all of the universe. Another way of saying this is this God's nonexistence is impossible. 

And so it's as if the author of Hebrews is saying no contingent being can atone for the transgression of an eternal law. That makes sense? Perfect sense. 

So then we go to the screen, "the exceeding sinfulness of sin can be estimated only in the light of the what everyone? Say it with me, "in the light of the cross. When men urge that God is too good to cast off the sinner let them look to Calvary". It was "because there was..." Say with me three words "there was no other way". Let say together again. It's because "there was no other way". Let's say it one more time. It was because "there was no other way in which man could be saved, because without this sacrifice it was..." There is our word. "It was impossible for the human race to escape from the violent power of sin to be restored to communing with holy beings". Say it with me, "it was impossible for them to again become partakers of the spiritual life.

It was because of this, because of what? Because of the impossibility of doing it any other way. "It was because of this that Christ took upon Himself the guilt of the disobedience and suffered in the sinners stead. Only one being in all the universe qualified". I don't know I only speak one language English and that not well. So if I'm not going to get it in English I'm not going to get it. I don't know the English language means the same thing to you that it means to me but when I read that there was no other way, I take that to mean that there was no other way. Are you tracking with me. If it was impossible for man to be saved in any other way, in my little limited English vocabulary I take that to mean it is impossible. No other way. 

First Thing Not Even God Cannot Do

So number one God cannot save you without the blood of Jesus. God can't do that; it's not possible. God cannot save you eternally without the shedding of the blood of Jesus who was himself God in the most emphatic sense. Jesus himself said "before Abraham was I am". All of the Jews understood exactly what Jesus was saying. Jesus said I and my Father are one. We could go through all of the various texts in the New Testament to establish the total divinity the total godness of Jesus.

I don't think you can say it any better than Ellen White did in Desire of Ages page 530, “In Christ is life, original, unborrowed, underived.”. Now if language means anything unborrowed, original and underived means unborrowed, original, underived. In other words he didn't get it from somewhere he had it in himself and that's exactly what John chapter one verse four says, "In Him Jesus was life". Jesus is not a contingent being. He is an eternally existent being. He is God in the most emphatic and absolute sense and so only God, only God becoming a man and dying. 

By the way he had to become a man because God as God cannot die. It was the only way. There was no other way and so the first thing that God cannot do is save you apart from the blood of Jesus. There was no other way. "It is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sin". Are we all together everyone yes or no? 

But what is the second thing that God cannot do. We find the answer right in Hebrews and instead of Hebrews ten we go one chapter forward to Hebrews eleven. Hebrews eleven, go there with me if you would. Hebrews chapter eleven and many of us know Hebrews chapter eleven is the faith chapter the what everyone? Faith chapter, sometimes referred to colloquially as the Hall of faith. The Hall of Faith.

So here we are in Hebrews chapter and i'm reading beginning in verse 6, "but without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Verse 7, "by faith Noah being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with Godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became the heir of the righteousness which is according to faith".

And when it says there in verse 6, without faith it is impossible to please Him. This is not just any ordinary , ambiguous, nebulous faith, according to verse 7 which modifies verse 6 this is faith in the righteousness of God himself . Because verse 7 tells you that when Noah built the ark he became the heir, the archetype of righteousness by faith. And so when it say in verse 6 that without faith is impossible to please God, you need to understand that that's not just any ordinary round of the mill faith, confidence or trust or reliance, that is faith in the righteousness of Christ. 

Second Thing Not Even God Can Do.

And so the second thing that not even God can do is save you apart from your own personal putting of faith in the blood of Jesus. And so we can look at it on the screen. 

  1. Save you without the blood of Jesus.
  2. save you without you putting personal faith in the blood of Jesus.
If that makes sense say amen. It can't happen. It's not possible for the blood of bulls should take away sins. And number two God cannot save you without you putting personal faith in the blood of Jesus. 

And so let's summarise even more succinctly GOD CANNOT: 
  1. Save without blood.
  2. Save without faith.

Very pretty simple stuff really. Now why not? why not? We've already begun to unpack the answer to that question why not when we noted that there are two kinds of beings in the universe contingent beings and necessary beings and the life of any contingent being is by definition non infinite not eternal and how could the life of a finite being ever atone for an infinite law and eternal loss. We've already begun to answer that question. 

But let's take it even a step further. Why is it that God cannot save us in any other way as we've already read. There was no other way. Well it's very interesting. There are at least five reasons that your obedience, your law keeping cannot save you. There are at least five reasons others could be mentioned but  we will limit it to just five in the interest of time. There are five reasons, at least, that your obedience, your law keeping cannot save you. Now before I read that let me actually show you something here very quickly. Let me skip that, go with me in your Bibles to just a couple texts here, the first is in Galatians, go there with me if you would. You are in Hebrew so just go to the left you'll find Galatians Galations, Ephesians, Philippians. Colossians. Galatians chapter three, what chapter everyone? Galatians chapter three. I want to look very quickly at three passages before I show you these five things because some of you are still living in the bondage of legalism. Some of you are still living trying to be a Christian before you are even yet sure if you are a Christian.

So before we look at the five reasons that your obedience could not yay never could save you or recommend you to God. Let's note very quickly what the law can do and what the law can't do. Galatioans chapter three we're beginning in verse twenty the Bible says, "now a mediator does not mediate only for one only". This is actually a little bit of a complex passage so we'll just jump down to verse twenty one, "Is the law then against the promises of God? Certainly not." Now look at this. Notice what Paul says next. "For if there had been a law which could have given" what? "life". Ok I am in verse twenty one of Galatians chapter three. "If there had been a law which could have given..." say it with me, "life then truly righteousness would have come by the law".

But if you hear what Paul saying what Paul is saying is so simple Don't miss it. What he's saying is if God could have rearranged the cake mix so that in some way it was possible for you to be saved by your obedience he would have done that. Do you see that? He says it expressly. Look at it again the last part of verse twenty one. "If there had been a law given which could have given life truly righteousness would have come by the law". But look at verse twenty two "but the Scripture has confined all under sin that the promise by faith in Christ Jesus might be given to those who believe. But before faith came we were kept guard by the law, kept for the faith which would after afterward be revealed. Therefore the law was our tutor our schoolmaster to bring us to Christ that we might be justified by faith". 

What Paul is saying here is so simple, don't miss it. He's saying if God could have aranged the cake mix of salvation so that you could be saved by your law keeping he would have done it. Did you get that? If God could have arranged the plan of salvation in such a way that you could be saved by your own obedience by your own lofty things he would have done that. Apparently that is not possible. Look at Romans, that's the book just a couple before this Romans chapter eight. Notice with me verse one. Actually will pick it up in verse three in the interest of time.  Romans chapter eight what verse everyone? Verse three. Romans chapter eight verse three. The Bible says, "for what the law could not do". According to that verse is there something the law cannot do. Yes or no? Yes. "For what the law could not do, God did by sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh and on account of sin he condemned sin in the flesh". 

I love that juxtaposition there. What Paul says is what the law could not do, God did. According to Galatians chapter three verse twenty one and Romans chapter eight verse three there is something the law cannot do. Our final passage of scripture before we go back to the screen first Timothy Chapter 1. Go there with me if you would. First Timothy chapter 1. If you can remember where Hebrews was this will be just a little bit before that. 1 Timothy Chapter one and verse eight beginning in verse they will read down through verse 10.

Three quick scriptures. Galatians chapter three verse twenty one and then we look at Romans Chapter 8 verse three and now very quickly first Timothy chapter one beginning in verse eight. "But we know that the law is,," what everyone? "good". we know that as Seventh day Adventists. We know that. "We know that the law is" say it with me. "The law is good". But notice that Paul says "If". Paul does not say categorically that the law is good. Paul qualifies his assessment of the law's goodness. He says the "law is good if one uses if lawfully or correctly".

What is the Appropriate Use of the Law

The law is good if it is appropriately used which raises the question then what's the appropriate use of the law. Well according Galatians chapter three verse twenty one and Romans chapter eight verse three the appropriate use of the law is not to try and be saved by it. Paul here says all the law is good. Oh yeah of course the law is good. In another place from a Chapter seven says the law is spiritual. The law is good. the law is good if what Paul if someone uses it in its appropriate way. Well what is the appropriate way he tells us in verses nine and ten. Knowing this, another word you should be aware of,  "knowing this that the law was not made for a who for a righteous person according to that text who was the law and not made for? "A righteous person". Oh that's kind of odd. Well who was it made for them "but for the lawless". The law was made "for the lawless and the insubordinate for the ungodly and sinner, for unholy, for profane, for murderers of fathers, and murderers of mothers, for men slayers, for fornicators, for Sodomites, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine". 

Paul says the law is good if you use it right. Well what is the correct use of the law Paul. Simple simple simple. The law is not to show you how good you are the law is to show you how bad you are and how good God is. That is the appropriate use of the law. So according to Galatians chapter three God if he could have he would have saved you by your law keeping. But that was not an option available to God. According to Romans chapter eight verse three the law could not do something and when God  looked down from heaven he said the law can't accomplish that task he said, I myself will become a man and I will accomplish that which the law couldn't accomplish.

And according to First Timothy Chapter one verse eight to ten, the law is a great thing, it's a wonderful thing, it's a glorious thing and  as Seventh day Adventist we are uniquely positioned to preach the goodness and benevolence of the law, the glories of the law, but the law is good if we use it lawfully. What is the lawful use of the law what is the appropriate use of the law ? To tell people not how good they are but how bad they are and how good God is.

The law is not designed to show us our righteousness but God's righteousness. And as a mirror our own unrighteousness. Many of us are trying to be saved by our obedience. I use the word obedience and law keeping here interchangeably. Many of us are trying to be saved by our obedience. Many of us are trying to be saved by our law keeping. If you are trying to be saved by your law keeping, by your obedience, that is an inappropriate use of the law. The law was not designed to save you. It was designed to show you that you need a savior.

Five Reasons Why Law Keeping Can't Save You

And so there are at least five reasons you are now I believe prepared to look at this there are at least five reasons that your law keeping cannot save you.

Number one your righteousness isn't good enough. It's just not good enough, I'm sorry to inform you. Your Sabbath keeping isn't strict enough. Your private mental life is not pure enough. Your law keeping is not good enough to meet the,,,. I remind you that God is infinitely holy and so the standard of God's holiness, the standard of God's righteousness, the standard of God's law would be infinitely holy.  Are we all together on that yes or no? So let's just be honest. Your Sabbath keeping your tithing, your vegetarianism, your what ever it .. fill in the blank is just not quite good enough.

Number two your law keeping has not been consistent enough. The Bible says in Galatians chapter three, "You are under a curse if you don't continue in all things that are written in the book of the law". If you have sinned even once you have separated yourself from God and death is the inevitable consequence. So not only has your obedience not been good enough it's not been consistent enough.

Number three, your sinful nature. You are born with a predisposition to selfishness. Anyone who has ever had children is aware that this happens literally out of the womb. Children are liars from the get go you feed them, you you change their diaper, you bath them, everything is fine and they cry anyway. They are lying. There is nothing wrong and you know it. They are born selfish and if you could communicate with them you would tell them that but because you can't and you're just tired of hearing it you pick them up. And if you're like me you hand them to their mother and you go fishing. That's proof positive right there that the pastor still has a sinful nature. Your sinful nature which you receive at birth prevents you from keeping the law in a way that could meet the infinitely high and holy standard of God's righteousness. It's as if you're tagged out before you even get started.

Number four. The law,  for sinners, is not intended to bring about salvation but condemnation. The law is good if one uses it lawfully. Thus trying to be saved by keeping the law is what? Is what word everyone? It is a misuse of the law

Number five.  Since Adam's fall, even the possibility of being saved by the law has been forever forfeited. Since Adam's fall even the possibility, the remotest possibility of being saved by your law keeping was completely forfeited. If you don't believe me notice this in Steps To Christ page 62, "It was possible" but now it's not. It was possible for who everyone? It was possible for who? "for Adam before the fall" It was possible for when. To do what? "To form a righteous character by obedience to God's law".

Question, could Adam before the fall form a righteous character by his obedience. Yes absolutely. But he failed to do this and because of his sin our natures are fallen. Do I need to read that again is that clear enough? I just don't know how language can be clearer because of whose sin "his sin" whose nature is fallen? Ours. "because of his sin our natures are fallen and we cannot make ourselves righteous". You could put it this way, it is impossible for us to make ourselves right since we are sinful and unholy. We cannot perfectly obey the holy law. Has everyone heard that?. We cannot perfectly obey the holy law. "We have no righteousness of our own with which to meet the claims of the law of God". Language can not be clearer.

There are at least five reasons and others could be cited why your own law keeping can not save you. It's not good enough. It's not consistent enough. And since the fall of Adam you have forfeited for ever the opportunity of being saved by your own law keeping.
David Asscherick 

Now I want you to think about Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane as we prepare to close, as we prepare to land this plane. Here's Jesus, he is in Gethsemane. He is some thirty years old. He's lived the last three and a half years of his life an active public ministry. The disciples have seen Jesus carry himself with a poise, with a confidence , with a calmness, with a dignity,  he has stood face to face with the Pharisees stood face to face with the scribes demoniacs of come rushing at him with a vigor and enthusiasm and a terror and he has stored it right there. They have seen him in every circumstance to carry himself absolutely perfectly with dignity, with poise, with confidence and calmness.

And so those disciples must have been totally confused totally nonplussed and totally perplexed when Jesus ignominiously and even clumsly goes stumbling into Gethsemane. As he goes into Gethsemane the gospel writers want you to know it was such an ugly scene, such a strange scene, remember the disciples are still riding the expectation that Jesus is eventually going to unsheath that sword and start hacking away at the Romans to bring all of the gentile powers into subordination to the Jews. After all he fed the five thousand so we don't need to carry our own meals. He can heal people. So when people are wounded on the field of battle they can be raised and even Lazarus was raised from the dead and so there's what is impossible for us to lose in this military political conflict it is soon to transpire between us or the Romans in which all gentile powers will be subjugated to the great nation of Israel.

That is the expectation of Peter and James and John and the others and so when Jesus goes into Gethsemane and ignominiously even clumsily falls on his face, the disciples will have never seen anything like this before. Poised, calm, in control, self possessed, Jesus is now falling on his face. It was apparently such a poignant awkward moment that Jesus didn't want everyone else around and so he requested that only Peter, James and John go with them.

I try to imagine what Peter James and John were thinking. I sometimes wonder if maybe they thought he had a stomach ache or something and I'm not just trying to be facetious. They have no clue what was taking place in the garden of Gethsemane I guess Gethsemane, of course is an olive oil press and when you use an oil press it is designed to squeeze through to bring the oil out of the olives that is what Gethsemane is. And Jesus went into the garden to be squeezed by sin and he falls on his face the Bible says. And he prays the same prayer not once, not twice but three times.  Three times Jesus prays the same prayer.

And I lose my wallet on a daily basis. In fact I lost it just today and found it. It happens every day. I lost it on the airplane yesterday. I have lost it today together with my keys. I lose things everyday. In fact just recently i lost my  camera cord, couldn't find it anywhere. My wife was not even with me, she was a 150 miles away and I am completely stressed before I am to get on that plane. I called my sweetheart and I said "I am not going to get on that plane. My mind is not going to work if i cannot find that thing". And she is like oooh, have you checked the glove compartment? I have been looking for this thing for weeks and she is just wired that way. I ran up to the glove compartment and there it is and I am like how did she know. I can be in Africa, one time I was in Africa and I could not find my passport. I had been away from my wife for three days. She did not see me with it. She just saw me get on the plane and I am stressing about my passport and she says to me from the United States over skype, "have you checked your car key?" How did she know that i was wearing car keys. Hold the line. How did she know?

Now when I lose my wallet and when my wife is not around  I pray. Do you ever pray that God will help you to find something? Of course we do because we are not like elephants we forget everything and so I am praying and I am like God help me to find my wallet. Where is it? Oh Jesus I need that wallet that would be such a stressful thing here in Australia to have to deal with all that. Oh I left it on the speaker. Hallelujah oh Jesus thank you so much. Father in Heaven you are God, you are awesome I will serve you for the rest of my life thank you so much for following me around my bumbling miss.

And so here's the interesting thing after I pray for God to help me find my wallet and I find it I don't then pray again to ask God to help me to find it because I found it. The only reason you would pray the same prayer not once, not twice, but thrice was if you were not getting the answers you were hoping for. Are you tracking with me. So Jesus prays father if it is possible let this cup pass from me. He is scared, terrified. The cup doesn't pass and so he goes back and prays a second time. "My father if it be possible let this cup pass from it. Nevertheless not as I will but if you will". The Bible says He went back and prayed a third time. Three times one, two, three times and you know that that if Jesus had gotten the response that his humanity had hoped for he would have stopped praying. The reason that he keeps praying for the very same thing is that he's not getting the answer that he wants.

Well the answer the question is why couldn't God answer Jesus' prayer? And here's the answer. There was no answer. Jesus' prayer was qualified by if it is possible let's do another way. If it is possible let's do it another way. If it is possible I do not want the weight of the sin of the world upon me. I fear that my separation from you will be eternal and we could spend a whole night on that but suffice it to say that Jesus was terrified quite literally scared to death.

And so three times he says can we do this another way. Can we please do this another way?  If it is possible God could we please do this without a way. If it was possible for you friend to be saved in any other way you can be rest assured tonight that God would have answered Jesus' prayer. Can you say amen. It was not possible.

You see beloved there are two things that not even God can do. God cannot save without blood and he cannot save without faith. God cannot save without blood. And God cannot save without faith. Let's go back to Steps to Christ page sixty two as we land this thing. "But Christ has made a way of escape for us. He lived on earth amid trials and temptations such as we have to be". He was a real man who really walked in real sandals, on real dirt, in a real place, in a real time, with a real body. He knows what it is to be you. He has experienced the unique vicissitudes of life. He knows what it is to be tempted in all points such as you have been tempted. He knows what it is to be a man. He died for us and now he offers to take our sins and give us his righteousness. If you give yourself to Him and accept Him as your savior then sinful as your life may have been for his sake you are accounted righteous" for whose sake for his sake? God counts you righteous not because you are so good but because Jesus was so good.  "Christ's character stands in place of your character and you are accepted before God just as if you had not sinned"

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