Bible Lesson 76

Public Confession of Christ

Romans 10:8-13

In this lesson, we want to ask God to speak to us from His Word, the Bible, concerning the Christian’s responsibility to confess Jesus Christ as Lord. The scriptural basis for this lesson is found in Romans chapter ten, verses eight through thirteen. In that scripture, God speaks to us through the writer of Romans and tells us that true salvation is evidenced by a heartfelt belief that ‘confesses’ that Jesus is our Lord, our Master, and our Sovereign. Now that sounds easy but in this lesson, we will see that for those who truly love Christ and have submitted their lives to Him, and ask Him to live this life here on the earth through them, it is easy; but we seem to have lost the kernel of truth in what we mean when we say those things.

Let’s define a couple of words that are meaningful if we are to truly understand these verses. First, the word believes, then the word confesses and then the word denies. We either confess the Lord Jesus Christ as the Lord of our life, or we deny Him in word and deed. I expect that all of us, including me and you, have been guilty of not always being Christ-like enough, and retreating into the darkness of the world to keep from being recognized as a soldier of Christ.
Oh, we have all kinds of excuses for not being identifiable as slaves of Christ, sometimes we just don’t think we have time, sometimes it’s the lack of ability, sometimes it is that we don’t want to lose an acquaintance. None of those is an excuse for not always bragging about our wonderful, Gracious, and loving Savior and Lord.

You will all remember that the New Testament was written in Greek and then translated into our English. So we need to know what the Greek word for confessing means to properly understand it. The Greek verb for confessing is Homologeo (homo, same and lego, to speak). In other words, when we confess Jesus as Lord we agree with the truth about Jesus Christ, the truth that the Bible reveals to us about Him.

Homologeo, means to assent, accord, agree with, to confess, declare, admit, just as the Apostle Paul did in Acts24:14 when he declared, ‘But this I confess to you, that according to the Way, which they call a sect, so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the Law and the Prophets’. The Old Testament is the only thing that they had at that time, and it was referred to as the Law and the Prophets.

Paul was agreeing with and assenting to and confessing to all who heard him that he believed and confessed whatever the Word of God had to say about the Messiah. Now, since we are speaking here about true Christians confessing their Lord Jesus Christ to the world, the question becomes are you confessing Christ and am I confessing Christ. Does everyone who comes in contact with me in my daily life, at home, at work, at play, realize that I am sold out to Christ’

Is our faith in Christ or ourselves’ That may sound radical but there are many people today who have faith in all kinds of things, and only faith in Jesus Christ and His sacrifice for us will save us.

It easy to have the wrong kind of faith, and some have faith in their faith, some faith in themselves, faith in their profession of faith and faith in their particular church, but again let me stress, only faith in Jesus Christ will ever save anyone. If our faith is in ourselves, it will manifest itself in our self-righteousness, smugness about our church and our group.

If our faith is in our faith, we will end up in hell for eternity, proclaiming, and professing to the devil that we believe. If our faith is in Jesus Christ and His work for us on the cross, we will always be very careful that we do not let ourselves overshadow Christ and the things of Christ. It is said that Michelangelo painted with a brush in one hand and a candle in the other, to keep his shadow from overshadowing his work, and that’s what the true Christian must be careful to do. It must never be about us because we had nothing to offer for our salvation. Our salvation is a work of God from start to finish, and the glory and thanks and praise should always go to God.

It all begins with God, as God comes to us as people who are dead in trespass and sin, to ‘quicken’ us, or bring us back to Spiritual life. God saves those that He chooses, for His only purposes, by first planting His gift of faith (belief) in the one being saved. We are recreated, in Christ, and we are new creatures, having the old things of Adam passed out of our lives and all things being new. We have a new heart and a renewed mind, and a ‘can’t help it testimony’.

We live our lives in the newness of the indwelling Holy Spirit, and we claim Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior wherever we go and to whomever, we speak to. We confess Christ before men without hesitation or reservation, and because we are faithful to do that Christ says that He will confess us before His Father who is in heaven (Matthew 10:32). Jesus Christ who because of His victory over sin and death and His exaltation to the right hand of the Father is our Priest, Prophet and King ‘and also will be our advocate in the Judgment, as He represents us as His brothers and sisters before the throne of grace.

Jesus says that He will confess us before the Father, if, we confess Him before men, but if we deny Him or fail to confess Him before men He will deny us before His Father in heaven. Now, I don’t know if you get the full impact of what was said there in Matthew 10:32-33, but we must hear what Christ is speaking to us. The Savior and Lord say in those verses that if we ‘confess’ Him before men, and confess means the Biblical truth about who Jesus Christ is and what He has done on the Cross’.the full counsel of God, that He will confess us as redeemed by His blood, his brothers and sisters, who have been fitted for heaven for eternity.

Jesus Christ goes on to say that if we deny Him or fail to confess Him that He will deny us before the Father. The difference in a true confession and a denial of Christ means the difference in heaven and hell. So all of you shrinking violets had better reconsider how you move and act in this world if you would spend eternity in heaven.

There have been so many people who have grown up, hearing the lie that teaches that Christians are not to judge under any circumstances, and they hear that connected to Matthew chapter seven and verse one which does say ‘Judge not that ye be not judged’, and they never bother to read the next four verses which bring verse one into proper context. What Matthew chapter 7:1-5 is teaching us is that we must always judge ourselves first, to make sure that we are right with God; but then it is clear that we are to judge fellow Christians by the Word of God.

We don’t become self-righteous judges, but we, as committed children of God, take the Word of God and apply it to our brothers and sisters to keep them on the right track. Of course, it works both ways, so they are to apply God’s judgments to us. Verses 3 through 5 of Matthew chapter 7, asks of us, ”Why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye’ Or how can you say to your brother, Let me remove the speck from your eye; and look, a plank is in your own eye’ Hypocrite! First, remove the plank from your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye’.

All that God has said Christians should do or not do is to be used when we judge any brother. God has already judged what sin is and what we are to do is to take that and we assist our brothers to walk in a godly fashion. Our judgment of our fellow Christians is not to be unloving or mean spirited but lovingly applied. Understand now, many times and perhaps most of the time the brother that we have to judge will not see it as love at the time, but the fact that we love them enough to want the very best for them is evidence that we truly love them with a godly kind of love.

It is easy to understand why so many who call themselves Christians seem to seize on Matthew chapter 7 and verse 1 without any regard for the next four verses of that chapter, and it’s because dealing with brothers and neighbors about some sin they are involved in seems so traumatic and most do not want to rupture a friendship. Be that as it may, we are under God’s command to judge and restore them and if some are going to have their feelings hurt, I prefer to bruise the brother, rather than the Father, who is in heaven, (Galatians 6:1-10).

What we have to remember is that we are to judge righteous judgments. We don’t make up our own set of laws or expectations for a brother, and we don’t judge according to appearances, instead, we judge with righteous judgment, according to what God has inspired in His Word the Bible, (John 7:24).

If we are not ready and willing to judge ourselves and others, we are not ready to confess Jesus Christ as Lord and so we actually deny Him before men and we have already seen that Christ said if we deny Him before men, He will deny us before the Father. It has become evident that we do not know nor do we obey what God has said; and that is because we don’t know what God has said.

We left off reading and studying the Word of God years ago and we have been served up traditions, opinions, and outright heresy, by men who preach without any warrant to preach. By that, I mean that they were not called by God to preach and they preach to draw crowds. You can preach what most men preach today and draw crowds; but if that is what a preacher is after, then why doesn’t he tap a keg of beer, cut a watermelon, and show an X-rated movie and then he can get the entire community to come and sit in his congregation.

The problem that the visible church has in our day is that men are attempting to build a church, rather than obeying God and preaching the whole counsel of God, just as God inspired it, and leave the building of Christ’s church to Christ, (Matthew 16:13-18). Not one soul will ever be saved by the skill of any preacher’s oratory. Not one soul will ever be saved by a perverted gospel.

Not one soul will ever be saved because some tender-hearted pastor loves them. Not one soul will ever be saved because they joined some institutional church, or was baptized in some sect’s baptismal pool. The only souls that will ever be saved are those souls that God draws to Himself as the result of the hearing or reading the Word of God and having God reach out and down to them to draw them to Himself, through Jesus Christ. Having said that, not one soul is saved who allows anything or anyone to cause them not to confess before men, that Jesus Christ is who the Bible says that He is.

We seem to have begun to think that all we have to do to appear to confess Christ is to go to church occasionally. That won’t get the job done! The true Christian is a little Christ, one who is following Christ as closely as they can; and they know nothing but Christ in a sense, so wherever they go they speak about His love and His mercy and His work that has been done in their lives and to their benefit.

The true Christian is like a clock, and if we think about a clock, it is always working, always moving, and always posting everyone about what time it is. What kind of clock are you as you live in this world that needs to know the time; and by the time I mean the limit to time that we all have’ Every one of us knows in our heart of hearts that man is like grass, it comes forth and grows for a while and then withers and dies. God has spoken to us by the Apostle Peter and tells us that ‘All flesh is as grass and all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers and its flower falls away, but the word of the Lord endures forever’, 1st Peter 1:24.

We as professing Christians have, for the most part, adopted the excuse that says, ‘I am not able to speak eloquently, so I just live my life the best I can, without ever attempting to witness’. That dog won’t hunt either folk, (Exodus 4:10-12)! Christ called us to take the gospel to others, first to our families, then to our neighbors and then to the uttermost parts of the world.

We may think that due to the communications tools and the huge mission’s efforts that have been done for the past decades, that everyone knows the truth concerning the gospel. That is not true and many have heard ‘something’ about the Lord Jesus Christ, but they have not been taught to obey what He has commanded.

That means that they have not been witnessed to in the degree that Christ commanded in Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-16; Luke 24:47; and Acts 1:8. Confession of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is not muttering His name as we pass by people on the street, not in enjoying meaningless fellowship with some congregation on Sunday, or knocking on doors and inviting people to attend your church.

Confession means that we wake up every day and as we get prepared to go to work or play, we make the purpose of our day to speak the gospel to those who will listen. God does not expect us to waste our time attempting to tell those who have absolutely no interest. Our job is the same as the disciples that Jesus sent out, and that is to teach those who want to hear the good news of the kingdom, Matthew 10:7-15.

Confessing or witnessing the gospel is not some idle attempt to cause someone to repeat a prayer after you, it is a lifestyle that takes the time and makes the effort to teach those who hear us, to repent and be saved by faith in Jesus Christ, (Acts 2:36-39). Certainly, it is not easy, but what have any of us ever done that was worthwhile, that was easy’ What makes it hard sometimes is that whenever a proper witness or confession is made, it causes us to risk a relationship with a friend, a neighbor, or a family member because nobody is exempt. I make no bones about a witness, it is always confrontational to those who are lost and undone and going to hell, to those who have become comfortable with the world and their place in the world.

They are humanist and they do not like to hear that they are so depraved and evil that they required the death and resurrection of the sinless Son of God, to make them fit for heaven.

Jesus Christ warned us, who would be faithful to His commandments, that the world and the people of the world would not like us when we began to reflect Him and His lifestyle. In the gospel of John, chapter 15 and verses 18 through 25, Jesus Christ, having just reminded His disciples that He was the true vine and His Father as the vinedresser, went on to say that if we are truly His and are going to heaven that we have to abide in Him and bear fruit; and fruit is produced by our obedience to confess Jesus Christ with our mouth, and believe in our heart that God has raised Him from the dead. What do you think that God meant when He says to us there in Romans 10:9-10, that we are to believe in our heart that God has raised Christ from the dead’

It does not mean simply that we concur with God about the resurrection, but it goes to a heart knowledge that Christ is your Lord and Savior and that it took the sacrifice of God’s sinless Son, to redeem or buy you back from sin. It goes further to agree that Jesus Christ was dead, buried, and on the third day arose and is now seated at the right hand of the Father, making intercession for us.

Since God raised Christ, we know that when Christ uttered from the cross, ‘It is finished’, that He had accomplished all that needed to be done to save those who would believe and obey Him. A heart belief is a belief that puts the old creature to death and raises a new creature, that is empowered by God to live the way the Lord says Christians are to live and a person who will confess Christ in every aspect of their lives.

We must understand how we are to confess Jesus Christ, so let’s look into the word of God about that. Are we to present Jesus Christ as most church members of our day, think about Him’ Not if we want to teach those who hear our confession to repent of their sins! The church of our day sells Jesus Christ pretty cheap; because we love to tell sinners that Jesus Christ doesn’t mind that they are sinners, and that Jesus died for everybody, and that Jesus loves everybody, just the way they are.

Most people prefer Jesus to the real Jesus, but that will not save anyone. The truth is that Jesus came to pay the sin debt of those who would obey Him. He did that because God the Father had already judged us and found us lacking. We were under the wrath of God because of our sin and Jesus died to make us saints instead of sinners. According to the Bible, Jesus Christ does not love those who are not obeying Him and neither does the Father, (See John 14;21-14; John 15:9-10). Jesus did not die for everyone, but for those who would obey Him (Hebrews 5:8-9).

I am constantly hearing church members who say that we should not fear God, so they go about telling others that God is not to be feared. In a conversation that I had the other day with a church member, she made that statement, ‘We are not to fear God’ and then I suppose they wanted to use scripture to prove that, so she quoted Acts Chapter five, where God dealt with Ananias and Sapphira, his wife by striking them dead for lying to the Holy Spirit about a monetary gift to the church.

She said that she was glad that we were not under that kind of discipline in our day. I asked her if she thought that God was not striking people dead in our day because of certain sins (1st John 5:16). She did not know what she was talking about because when I asked her what happened to the church after those two were struck down; and she didn’t know of course, that the church experienced a sudden spurt of revival; because of that incident. People say that God was real and that He was to be feared, God is not a paper tiger! I believe that the main problem with the visible church is that it has decided that God changed at the cross.

God did not change when His Son Jesus Christ died on the Cross, He is the same and will never change. God still hates sin, and will one day send Jesus Christ back in His Wrath to judge the quick and the dead.

If we are going to confess Christ before men, let’s make sure that we do it according to the truth which is found in the Bible, (John 17:17).

Until next time,

may God bless and keep you

This is Bro. Bob