The Ten Commandments, Pt. 4

Scripture: John 14:15, 1 Corinthians 10:13, Jude 1:24
If we love God, we ought to obey His commandments. But Is it possible to keep God's Commandments? We cannot keep God's law in our own strength. But if we are saved, we will have an experience with Jesus.
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Female Announcer: It's time now for "Bible Talk." Join our hosts Gary Gibbs and John Bradshaw, speakers for the Amazing Facts Ministry as they now open the Bible and discuss themes that affect your life today. Stay tuned because the next 15 minutes will deepen your understanding of God's word.

John Bradshaw: Hello friend, and welcome again to "Bible Talk." I'm John Bradshaw. With me is Gary Gibbs. On "Bible Talk" we talk about the Bible and what the Bible says to us today.

Lately on "Bible Talk," Gary we've been talking about the Ten Commandments. We've found that the Bible says that although a person is saved by grace through faith, it is still God's will that we love Him enough to obey Him. He wants us to keep the Ten Commandments.

Gary Gibbs: John, it is important that we obey God's law. God gave us the law to point us to Christ. It points out that we're sinners, and it points out that we have a need for a savior. When we come to Jesus and we accept him as our savior, then He writes the law on our hearts. We want to obey him. As Jesus said in John 14:15, if ye love me, keep my commandments.

John: Now, how can you be sure He is talking about "the" Ten Commandments there? Maybe he's talking about Matthew 22--A young fellow came to Him and said, ". . .which is the great commandment in the law?" He said love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength and your neighbor as yourself. Maybe that's what He meant.

Gary: Well, you know, when Jesus was alive, the Pharisees accused him of trying to put away the law, time and time again. He said think not that I've come to destroy the law. I've not come to destroy it but to fulfill it. Now, some people say to fulfill means He kept it so we don't have to. But that's not what it means at all. He fulfilled it by keeping it perfectly so He could break the power of sin.

Then you come down to the Apostle Paul in Romans 7:7. He points out that the law is still effective. The law still has a vital role. He says I would not have known sin except the law said thou shalt not covet. So, the law is very important. It tells us what sin is, and it points us to our savior.

John: When He said thou shalt not covet, He could only be referring there to one law. Thou shalt not covet is found in the Ten Commandments.

Gary: That's right. That's the only law that says that. So what God wants to do is He wants to give us an obedient heart. In Ezekiel 36:26 He gives us a promise-a wonderful promise-a new heart will I put within you.

Then He goes on, and He says I will put my spirit within you, and I will cause you to walk in my judgments, in my statutes, and ye shall do them. So, God wants to change us from the inside out.

Where we have a problem, John sometimes (We talked about this in our last program.) is when we think that in our own strength we can keep God's law. Then that gets you in the legalism. That's where you're trying to earn your salvation. We need to come to Jesus and say Lord, I want to obey You, but I can't do it on my own. But You can do it through me.

John: So, the Lord certainly only has one way of salvation, and that is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ and His shed blood. But the saved person is going to have an experience with Jesus where she or he wants to serve Jesus and wants to do His will.

Gary: I believe that perfectly represents what the Bible is saying. However, there are some Christians who say it's impossible to keep God's law.

John: Now, I've met them. They'll say you're talking about keeping the Ten Commandments, but do you keep all the Ten Commandments? Do you know anyone that's perfectly obeying God? Then people will preach it and proclaim it cannot be done.

So, we've talked about God wanting us to do this. It would be odd to think God would ask you to do something you can't do. But where do we learn in the Bible that you can even obey God. That's a tall order.

Gary: It is, and without Him obviously there's no way we can do it. I don't think, John that we'll ever come to the place where we look at ourselves and we'll say I am perfectly keeping God's commandments. The day we do that we've just broken a commandment. We've set ourselves up as our own God then.

But I like this promise in Jude 24. Because not only does it say obedience is possible, it's a promise that it can happen in me. In Jude verse 24. There's only one chapter there. Verse 24: It says, "Now unto him (talking about Jesus) that is able (Jesus is able) to keep you from falling, (falling into sin) and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy."

So, it says there that Jesus is able to keep us from falling and then to present us faultless before the throne of God with exceeding joy. That's a great promise.

John: There's a promise of that Jesus is able to keep a person from falling into sin. Now, let's stop here and talk a little bit about the encouragement that, that has got to offer people. There's a person listening today, in the church all his life, never been able to get his anger under control.

Perhaps he's been told by the preacher, "Don't worry about that Bill because you're never going to be able to get the victory over this sin or that sin, (or something like that) and besides you don't need to keep the Ten Commandments after all." But something's telling Bill in his heart, "Bill you ought not be like that. You shouldn't shout at your wife. You shouldn't get mad and the veins poke out of your neck when somebody takes your parking place at the mall." Here's some encouragement for somebody like that to know that Jesus is able to deliver you from out of those sins.

Gary: Well, it brings a lot of hope. Because sin is not only against God, but it turns against us. You know, if a person's constantly enslaved to anger or lust or whatever it might be, they never feel good about themselves. They're diminishing the quality of their life. They're also diminishing the quality of life of everybody around them.

You know, if I've got an anger problem and I go home and I yell at my wife, my wife in turn now yells at the child and the child gets kicks the dog. So, you know, when I sin, there's a ripple effect through the whole family and throughout society. So, yeah, it brings us a lot of hope that we can overcome sin through the power of Jesus Christ.

John: I want to take it a step higher. OK, people are going to say I can see that. I can see that maybe an angry person can settle down. But what about somebody struggling with an addiction or struggling with pornography? Or someone who's struggling in homosexuality. In their hearts they love God. But they find themselves in a lifestyle in a practice that is out of harmony with the Bible.

OK Gary, somebody can get the victory over angry. But maybe these ones: the homosexuality, the pornography, the addictions maybe they're so big that God doesn't expect us to overcome because it's too much for us.

Gary: Philippians 4:13, John. The Bible tells us, "I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me." We can do all things. That includes the very hard things that you're talking about there.

It tells us how we can do all those things in First Corinthians 10 verse 13: "There's no temptation taken you (no temptation, not a single temptation that we've ever faced) but such as is common to man."

You know, when I'm tempted to be angry--you've been tempted the same way--all the temptations that we face, they're common temptations to mankind. That means Jesus knows all about them. "But God is faithful (the text continues) who will not suffer, not allow you to be tempted above that which ye are able. . ." It doesn't finish the sentence there, but it means above that which you're able to bear. "But will with the temptation also make a way of escape, that ye may be able to bear it."

John: That means that with every temptation that comes, there's a way of escaping. You don't have to fall into that sin?

Gary: No, and did you notice there where the emphasis is? The emphasis in not on us. The emphasis is on God. It says, "But God is faithful." You see, God's faithful. He is there. Often when we face temptation, we just kind of fight it in our own strength. What we need to do is turn to God and say God, this temptation is bigger than me. But it's not bigger than You. You've provided a way of an escape here for me to get out of this temptation. Help me find it. Help me experience Your power and get the victory over this.

John: So, there's encouragement here that we don't have to be slaves to sin anymore. In fact, it goes all the way back to something we covered on "Bible Talk" in a previous program. I believe it is Romans, Chapter 6. It says he that is dead, dead to sin, is freed from sin. Then you're not under the law. You are under grace.

Gary: The only way to fight temptation in sin is to fight it from a perspective of confidence--that Jesus has gained the victory. He's provided a way of escape for us. If we fight it through the confidence that we have in Christ, we can be victorious.

I like the text found in Philippians one verse 6. It says, "Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you." He who converted you. He who renewed your heart by grace. He will perform it unto the day of Jesus Christ. We can have confidence, John that this work of grace that's begun in our hearts, that has changed us, is always there, available to us, to be obedient to God and victorious.

John: Now, why does it really matter? I love Jesus. He knows I love Him. Why does it really matter if I obey Him or otherwise? Why does it matter to Him if I get drunk occasionally? Why does it matter to Him, if I'm still a good person? I'm still in church every week. I'm helping little old ladies across the road and giving money to look after the stray cats. Why does it matter to Jesus if I slip every now and then or I've got this problem that just kind of bothers me?

Gary: Sin is a denial of faith. I recently was preaching at a church. I want to find a delicate way to say this. I was working with a church. There was a gentleman in that church, who was an elder in that church. He was a leader there. Here we were doing some evangelistic work trying to win people to Christ.

But this elder had a bad reputation in the community, John. He was known for being harsh, critical, legalistic, and not accepting. Everybody knew him as being a hard man. In fact, I watched him jumped over a bunch of young people, yell at them, and shout them down. Here he is the elder in this church.

We met people in that community who said, "I will never join your church because of this man." When I talked to that man, he hung his head and said, "You know, yeah, I do have a problem. That's just who I am. I realize that's just the sin that I have to struggle with."

Well, his sin was turning others off from Christ. So, that's why, it matters. That's why it's important for us to obey God. You see, our obedience is a test of our love for God. Jesus said in John 14:15, if you love me, you'll do what?

John: You'll keep my commandments. But you're not saying that somebody who's got a problem in their lives, somebody who's battling with a sin doesn't love Jesus.

Gary: They can have the emotional love for Christ. But that love has to go beyond the emotion. It has to transform the life. In James 2:20, it says, ". . . faith without works is dead." So, our faith in Christ, our love for Christ also has to work in us to transform our lives.

John: So, there's a sincere faith, and I don't doubt the sincerity of many people. But then there's a genuine faith. Is that right?

Gary: That is so true. Jesus says in Matthew 7:21-23, He talks about those who built their house on the sand versus those who built their house on a rock. He says the foolish man builds his house on the sand and when a storm comes along, his house is going to crash. Because it does not have a solid foundation. He says that person is the type of person who says I love God; I follow God; but they don't obey Him. Because they don't obey Him, it undermines their true love for God.

John: Jesus offers us the experience of a genuine faith in Him. He invites us to take a look to the cross, to see the divine Son of God suspended between the heavens and the earth, shedding his blood for each and every one of us. Sinners though we are, here on this earth.

When we see the goodness of God and we look into the Bible, and it's revealed to us that indeed we are sinners, something has got to cry out from within us and say God, change my heart. Change my heart, and when He does, he'll lead us to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. Friend, it's good news. We all can have that experience.

I'm John Bradshaw. Join me and Gary Gibbs again next time on "Bible Talk."

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