Hello Project Ezra! I pray you are all doing well. I’m keeping this week’s outline short, since I still have a lot to do on Mission Good Friday, but this week’s passage is an excellent one. I’m sure most of you know that the verse and chapter divisions we see in our Bibles were not in the originals, but were added long afterwards, probably during the 13th century. But sometimes, there are two lines of thought that are so distinct that I almost wonder if the chapter divisions shouldn’t be different. This is the case with Psalm 36. Verses one through four talk about the wickedness in the hearts of men, and the rest of the chapter talks primarily of God’s steadfast love and goodness. Of course, the two are in no way mutually exclusive, and that is part of the point of this week’s reading. The beginning of the outline addresses those with no fear of God before their eyes, and later sections show God’s steadfast love as demonstrated in the cross.
Don’t forget that Mission Good Friday is just a week away. We have had quite a few people sign up, and are praying for more. There is still plenty of time to gather a group and plan a trip to your local downtown area, shopping district, park, bus stop, or anywhere else where people gather. Many people open air preached for the first time through Project Ezra, and specifically through Mission Good Friday. Though it was not my first time, it was one of my first, and is one of the reasons I was able to continue preaching regularly. I would be willing to bet that each person reading this either is a person who needs that encouragement, or knows someone who needs it. So plan now to join us on the streets next Friday. We would love to have you, and God will be glorified through your obedience.
See you on the streets, and pray for many testimonies of hearts changed by the gospel.
All for His glory,
INTRODUCE YOURSELF AND PROJECT EZRA
READ PSALM 36
This passage tells us the wicked man has no fear of his God before his eyes
He flatters himself that his transgression cannot be found out and hated
Transgression is sin, and every one of us has tried to hide their sin
Every one of us has imagined that those things we do and think in private are ours alone, and are not known to anyone else.
But God knows every thought, word and deed
He knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows our hearts
And he said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God. (Luke 16:15)
He knows our transgression. And He hates it.
Some don’t believe God hates, because the Bible says He is a God of love.
Indeed He is loving, but He is also just and holy.
God hates sin. And we are sinners.
Most of us are quick to spot sin in others. Do you see it in yourself?
Take a moment to look at yourself in light of God’s moral law
USE THE MORAL LAW TO BRING CONVICTION OF SIN
Those who have sinned against God deserve nothing but His justice
The Bible tells us people will be punished in a place called Hell, a place of darkness and fire and pain. That punishment will last for all of eternity
Does this mean God is evil? No, it means He is just. This is the justice we deserve for our moral crimes against God’s perfect holiness
But Psalm 36 also speaks of God’s steadfast love. God is not only a just judge, but a loving Father
And because of that love, God made a way for our sins to be paid for, so we would not have to go to Hell
He demonstrated that love through His Son, Jesus Christ, and His work on the cross.
God tells us this:
2Co_5:21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
1Pe_2:24 He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.
On the cross, all God’s anger, hatred, and wrath toward sin was poured out on Jesus Christ so it did not have to be poured out on us.
For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it—the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
So the cross of Christ is a demonstration both of God’s justice, and His mercy
And blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin (Rom 4:8)
What about your sin? Is your sin counted against you, or have you given it to Christ?
Simply believing Christ existed isn’t enough. Simply believing He died and rose is not enough. Faith is more than knowledge.
To be saved means to turn from your sin and place your trust in Christ alone, and in the
word He has done, to save you.
Do that today! Turn from your sin and trust Christ.
Jesus said that He is the way, the truth, and the life, and that nobody comes to the Father but through Him (John 14:6)
So come to Him. Turn from your sins and turn to the savior today, while He has given you time.
INVITE PEOPLE TO COME AND TALK MORE. BE SURE YOU HAVE TRACTS AND BIBLES HANDY.