Tim Keller | September 25, 2016
We’re looking at the last sermon that Jesus Christ preached publicly to the world at large. And when you know this is the end, that you’re never going to speak to people again before you die, you usually say the things that are most important to you.
There are three ideas that Jesus gets across in this passage. They are not easy messages for the world to hear, but they’re brilliant.
Jesus is saying three things: 1) you need my power to believe, 2) you need my light for your darkness, and 3) the only hope you have is the judgment of God.
Jesus, in His final discourse before crucifixion, accentuates three pivotal messages: the necessity of His power for genuine belief, His light as the sole escape from eternal darkness, and God’s judgment as humanity’s only hope. He clarifies that He came not to condemn but to save, yet those who reject Him will face condemnation. These challenging yet vital truths must be courageously and wisely communicated by Christ’s followers.
1. You need my power to believe
Jesus teaches three crucial truths: the necessity of His power to believe, His light in our darkness, and the hope in God’s judgment. The interplay between divine control and human free will is stressed, pointing out that our choices matter, yet even our errors can serve a higher divine purpose. The ultimate message is the unconditional and eternal nature of God’s love, offering comfort and security to Christians, irrespective of their flaws.
2. You need my light for your darkness
Jesus Christ asserts that without His presence, the world remains in a state of darkness, lacking hope and a means to confront evil. Atheist philosopher Bertrand Russell concurs, suggesting that life is meaningless and doomed without something beyond it. Despite Martin Luther King Jr.’s affirmation of a divine law that helps distinguish between right and wrong, contemporary society often dismisses this concept, resulting in moral relativism and unaccountability, as seen in recent scandals and the widespread acceptance of a relativistic mindset.
3. The only hope you have is the judgment of God
Morality, while often perceived as relative, necessitates honesty and an eternal law to discern right from wrong, as recognized by Martin Luther King Jr. The concept of a Judgment Day, as illuminated by Jesus, brings hope and peace, assuring us that all wrongs will be rectified. Through faith in Jesus, who bore judgment on our behalf, we comprehend that we are deemed perfect and loved, freeing us from worldly judgments.
February Book Offer
In his book Counterfeit Gods, Tim Keller shows us how a proper understanding of the Bible reveals the truth about societal ideals and our own hearts — and that there is only one God who can wholly satisfy our cravings and fulfill our hopes.
February Book Offer