Archive of Pastor Darby's Sermon Notes, transcribed from his original typewritten documents
THE PURPOSE OF GOOD WORKS
Nov. 17, 1968 am
WE LIVE IN AN AGE OF CONFUSED PEOPLE AND PERVERTED VALUES TODAY, AND ARE LOSING CIVILIZATION
- Anarchy seems to reign in the use of words, motives, moral values, -meanings change
- We need to get back to basics so that we can understand each other- Motives & Goals
- If we could have a return to a basic vocabulary, we could have the peace sought by man.
But we need to study the Scriptures carefully to find our meaningful words.
I. WRONG REASONS FOR GOOD WORKS Titus 3:3-7
The world today is questioning motives, even if a person does well.
A. TO ACCOMPLISH GREAT GOOD IS A NOBLE MOTIVE, BUT A WRONG ONE! cf v.3
- Paul has a low view of human ability to be or do good- the world is hateful & hating
- It is strange how the greatest humanitarian projects backfire into sin and harm for all
- Our wars against discrimination, poverty, ignorance, -even anti-Communism- have all backfired!
B. TO WORK FOR OUR OWN SALVATION WOULD MOVE MANY, BUT THIS IS A FALSE MOTIVE -v.5
- Plainly, from one end of the Bible to the other, man simply cannot save himself- Eph 2:8-9
- God was moved by His mercy and grace to give us freely our only salvation- He wanted to.
- Even the way He provided was salvation- washing, renewing, all through Jesus Christ - v.6
C. TO DO GOOD WORKS BECAUSE GOD NEEDS US, OR THE RESULTS OF OUR WORKS, IS ALSO A FALSE MOTIVE - v.5
- We are made heirs by His grace; He gives all things to use, we cannot give Him any great thing
- The earth and all that is in it is His - and mankind certainly has not improved it
- The heavens above are populated by His angels; He does not need us at all
As far as God and Eternity is concerned- Isa 64:6- "all our righteousness is as filthy rags"
II. RIGHT REASONS FOR GOOD WORKS Titus 3:8 & 14
The right motive for our hearts is also supplied by the Lord that saves us- see it plainly
A. MAINTAIN GOOD WORKS * BECAUSE THEY ARE GOOD! 8c
- Beauty is its own excuse for being, and good works are good because they are good in being
- "Kalds" means good, fair, beautiful, right, noble, honorable, and is used often in the Bible
- Only God is good- Matt 19:17, but when a man does a good thing- God warms his heart a bit!
B. MAINTAIN GOOD WORKS * BECAUSE THEY ARE PROFITABLE UNTO MEN 8d
- We are told to avoid certain things because they are unprofitable- v.9, questions, strife
- The accumulative results of good deeds is civilization- and this is profitable to all
- But when good works are questioned away, evil is rewarded, Anarchy soon wipes out good!
C. ALSO WE MUST LEARN TO MAINTAIN GOOD WORKS FOR NECESSARY USES v.14
- No one can be obedient to God without more than just one- "a pattern of Good works-" 2:7
- To be fruitful we must maintain- keep up, and keep on doing- good works- 3:14 work or starve
- In fact the Lord is working in us to make us zealous of good works- 2:14
You just cannot be obedient to God without striving for Good Works with all that you have.
III. WHAT ARE GOOD WORKS?
I thought - feed my children, drive slow in school zones, & smile at in-laws Scout style
A. MAN HAS BEEN SEARCHING FOR A DEFINITION OF GOOD WORKS SINCE TIME BEGAN
- Babylonians had a tablet, Egyptians-Feed hungry- water thirsty- clothe naked- give ride- walker
- Plato taught the highest good is Happiness, for self & others; some thought pleasure-
- Early Catholics- Hear Mass, Confess Communion, Tithe, & not marry out of season- later, 7 virtues, 7 fruits of the Spirit, 7 corporal & spiritual works of love.
B. WHAT DID JESUS TEACH? Matt 6:20
- Matt 7:21 -Not just talking, but doing the will of God, also Matt 21:28- two sons, one obeyed
- There is a catalogue list in the Beatitudes- Matt 5:3-12, but these are attitudes - works?
- But the greatest comes in the form of a command- Love- John 13:34, to show love is good
C. WHAT DID PAUL TEACH? ALMOST HALF OF EACH OF HIS EPISTLES TURN TO PRACTICAL WORKS
- Titus 3:1,2 the usual - obey magistrates, don't lie or pick fights, but be gentle & meek
- The purpose of our assembling together in Church is to provoke each other - Heb. 10:24,25
- We are not to be weary in well-doing- 2 Thes 3:13, & Gal 6:9 gives a promise of reaping.
And because of His resurrection- I Cor 15:58 what we do is not in vain -
HAVE YOU BELIEVED IN GOD FOR SALVATION, AND ARE YOU SHOWING IT BY GOOD WORKS?
- To believe comes from the heart, but the first good work is to confess Christ publicly-
- Our confused world today needs more people doing good works for the right reasons-
- But we must quit expecting all eternity to bow to us in exchange for one little work-