24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 25“For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. 26“For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? 27“For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and will then repay every man according to his deeds. 28“Truly I say to you, there are some of those who are standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom” (Matthew 16.24-28)
Memory Verses: Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. (Matthew 16.24).
Yesterday we began looking at three parts of the gospel we need to understand for us to be effective in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. Understanding the needy, knowing people have to listen, and teaching people the privileges of believing in Jesus Christ. We looked at understanding the needy, more specifically the spiritually needy, which at some point we all fall into this category.
Today we are going to take a few moments understand, how people listen to the gospel and how we should present the gospel to them. Christ and the disciples are great teaches of this as they employed many different techniques. But the most important thing to remember is we must know who we are talking to, understanding they need a Savior, but that they most likely do not agree with our analyses and therefore, they will not be acceptable to our message.
Thus, there are two responsibilities placed upon the hearer as well as the presenter of the gospel. First, the presenter of the gospel must give the correct gospel, they must give Jesus Christ and Him crucified, buried, and resurrected sitting at the right hand of the Father (Romans 35.8, 6.23, 10.9-10; Philippians 2.5-11).
We can only share Christ and Him glorified so there is no mistake about Who our Salvation is through (John 14.6). As Paul asked the Galatia Church “I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel” (Galatians 1.6, ESV). People will always try and find a different way to get to heaven, an easier way, a simpler way, and we must be careful we do not water down the gospel just so we can see people come to ‘saving faith’ in Christ. A watered-down gospel is not the gospel, we must present the gospel just as it was given to us, unchanged, unashamed, full of glory and honor to God Almighty.
Second the hearer, yes must listen, but even more than this, they must respond to the message they hear. Now here is the most interesting thing about any message, many of us probably never thought of this, but everyone who hears our message is responding to it. They are either taking positive action to the message, in other words they respond by doing something. Or they are indifferent to the message, in other words they do nothing.
Jesus Christ will be the final judge of all men (Matthew 7.22-23, 25/31-46), and saying no to His message of Salvation and eternal life means death (Mark 8. 34-38; Romans 6.23; Revelations 20.11-15). Some might say, “I will wait until a later time, or I will just ignore this message” however, ignoring or waiting is rejection for no one knows how much time they have to say “yes” to the saving power of Jesus Christ (Job 7.7; Psalm 102.3; James 4.14).
Third, the hearer, when they respond to the gospel and are changed, have new responsibilities, “for ethical requirements are inherent in the message of Jesus Christ.” For anyone who is in Christ, they are a new creature: the old things are passed away; behold, they are become new” (II Corinthians 5.17, ASV, emphasis added). We are new, our life is new, our responsibilities are new, our hearing is new, and everything about us is new.
We now have the responsibility to live a life, which reflects Jesus Christ to a lost and dying world. Our very lives are the gospel message, we no longer need words, but our very actions will speak for us. Therefore, we must live lives, in a manner worthy of our relationship with a holy and reverent God. We must live in humility, holiness, compassion and trust allowing God to reign supreme within our lives for all the world to see (Galatians 2.20, 3.27, 5.22-26, 6.1-10).
So as we approach people with the gospel understand they are not ready to receive the message, but this cannot and must not stop us from delivering the good news of our Savior Jesus Christ to the lost and dying world. Christ commanded us, “To Go Ye into all the world…” (Matthew 28.20), He did not say, “Go when it is convenient, or easy, or when they all will listen.” No, He said, “Go Ye into all the World…” meaning now, at this very moment and spread the gospel message.
Some will listen and receive, others will listen and respond later, and yet others will reject the message altogether. But our mandate is not reception of the message but the presentation of the message, the delivery of the message, and God will do the rest. “Some of us planted the seed, some of us watered it, but God is the One making it grow. So, neither is the one who plants nor is the one who waters anything, but only God, who makes things grow” (I Corinthians 3.6-7, NIV, emphasis added).
Lord I am honored to be a child of the King of kings and Lord of Lords. You have saw fit to make a way possible for me to be in Your amazing presence each day. How amazing I can come into Your throne room boldly by the blood of Your Son who sacrificed His very life for me, a sinner, saved by Your grace, wonderful grace. I can never thank You enough for Your loving kindness. Lord as I go out into the world today, help me be the best example of You I can be, let others see You in my life. Lord give me boldness to share Your gospel with others, and not to be ashamed of You or what You have done for me. All this I pray in Your Son Jesus Christ’s Name, Amen.
 New American Standard Bible: 1995 update. (1995). (Mt 16:24–28). La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation.
 The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Ga 1:6). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.
 Tenney, Merrill C. The Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible, 5 vols. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1976. Vol 2. Pg. 780
 American Standard Version. (1995). (2 Co 5:17). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
 The New International Version. (2011). (1 Co 3:6–7). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.
You Can Download This Blog Here – November 18 – Matthew 16.24-28 Pt 2