Summary: WE need to remember how lost, helpless we were (or are) and remember what Christ did for us (or can do), and through Christ we have (or can have) five things. Outline adapted from Victor Knowles
Sermon for 3/12/2006
Jesus to the Rescue
A. On August 28, 1995 two boaters set out on the Haw River near Pittsboro, North Carolina. The river was at flood stage and very hazardous but these two felt like they were “experts” and “experienced boaters.” Well, as you can guess, these two got into serious trouble and a U.S. Army helicopter was used to rescue these two from danger. Both boaters were recovered without harm, but a flight medic received minor injuries while attempting to reach one of the victims.
B. This past week in Northern California the snow was causing hazardous conditions on the roadways. One driver in a Toyota pickup slid off the highway down a steep embankment into the icy waters of the American River. Bob Paris was driving down the same road and saw the whole thing happen. What did Bob do? He stopped and ran down this embankment and plunged into the American River to rescue this man. Emergency workers said it was remarkable that Paris survived, considering that he jumped into frigid water with no protective clothing. “Our divers wear full suits that protect them from the cold water. That citizen didn’t have that and jumped in and did an absolutely remarkable job and saved this man’s life,” said Sergeant Jim Byers. Paris said he just did what he thinks anyone would do. “If it were me, I hope they’d go down there and take that chance,” Paris said. As of Wednesday, the driver Paris rescued was in critical condition at a local hospital.
• The key word here is rescue.
Thesis: WE need to remember how lost, helpless we were (or are) and remember what Christ did for us (or can do), and through Christ we have (or can have) five things.
I. How lost, helpless, pathetic we were
A. Without strength, still powerless (Vs. 6).
1. We were powerless to escape from our sins.
a. (John 8:34 NIV) Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.
b. (Rom 7:19 NIV) For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do--this I keep on doing. (Rom 7:20 NIV) Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
2. We were powerless to escape death.
a. Death came about because of sin. Because of Adam and his sin all of mankind will experience death, the separation of the body from the spirit.
b. We are also powerless to escape the second death. (Rev 20:14 NIV) The lake of fire is the second death. Eternal separation from God. We are powerless to escape either death.
3. Powerless to resist Satan. 1 John 5:19- the whole world is under the control of the evil one. We are powerless to resist the evil one.
B. Ungodly (Vs. 6)
1. Does not think of God. (Psa 10:4 NIV) In his pride the wicked does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God.
2. Doing the opposite of God’s commands. (Isa 59:7 NIV) Their feet rush into sin; they are swift to shed innocent blood. Their thoughts are evil thoughts; ruin and destruction mark their ways.
C. Sinners. Vs. 8
1. (Rom 3:23 NIV) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
2. (Isa 64:6 NIV) All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.
D. Enemies. Vs. 10
* I do not hate God. (Mat 12:30 NIV) "He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters.
II. Remember what Christ did for us (or can do)
A. Died for us. Died for the ungodly. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
1. He didn’t have to; he wanted to. (John 10:18 NIV) No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again.
2. He gave his life. (1 Tim 2:5 NIV) For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, (1 Tim 2:6 NIV) who gave himself as a ransom for all men--the testimony given in its proper time.
Transition: Illustration- During the war in Vietnam, a young West Point graduate was sent over to lead a group of new recruits into battle. He did his job well, trying his best to keep his unit from ambush and death. But one night when they had been under attack, he was unable to get one of his men to safety.