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Perishing 2

[2 Peter 3:9]  Promise – singular; it’s talking about the inheritance.  This passage includes the author as well as to those to whom he’s writing; he’s not willing that any of us should perish [apollumi] – “of us” is the implication and it is the same in the Greek.  He’s not willing that any of us should perish, but that we all might come to repentance.  This has to do with the promise; singular; our inheritance in the coming Kingdom.

[Galatians 3:14]  Now, “the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Christ”, does not make reference of salvation being extended to the Gentiles, because again, you have to keep in mind that Gentiles have always been able to be saved.  But, this pertains to the promise made possible by the ministry of the Holy Spirit, keeping in mind the ministry of the Holy Spirit is a teaching ministry revealing the deep things of God, and the deep things pertaining to the mysteries of the Kingdom of the Heavens and the deep things pertaining to ruling and reigning.

Look down in [verse 18].  Then, [verse 19].  In other words, the inheritance belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ, and we can share in that inheritance.

The Lord is not slack concerning that promise.  He’s not willing that any of us should lose our life in the coming age.  He desires for all of us to grow into maturity and be spiritual adults and responsible spiritual adults.  He wants us to be faithful, so when we stand at the Judgment Seat of Christ, we may hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.”

[Luke 13]  This is a passage you hear many evangelists quoting, and it’s being quoted out of context quite often.  They use it in terms of repentance, not even taking into account the word “perishing”; in verse 3, when you hear an evangelist say, “My Bible says, except you repent, you shall likewise perish”.  Well, “likewise” is the key to that verse.  Look at the “likewise” in verse 1 and 2:  [verses 1-3]  You shall in like manner have your life taken from you; you too will be killed.  That’s the “likewise”.  That doesn’t have anything to do with being saved or born from above.

This is in context having to do with those who would repent of their sins or they too will suffer the judgment of God, just like those at Galilee did.  Also, down here in [verse 4-5].  Again, having their lives taken away from them.

Think of the verse in 1 John 5:16, where it says, “There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it.”  There are Christians who commit sin unto death, and God is going to take them off the scene.  Their labor and work, and indeed, their embarrassment to the Lord is over, and they will be taken off the scene and they will no longer embarrass the Lord with their sinful life and waywardness.

These too perish because of a sin unto death, so to speak.

[Luke 15]  We were here last Sunday.  This is talking about the sheep that went astray.  [verses 4-7]  Here we find sheep that were in the fold; they were having fellowship with the Lord and others in the fold and he goes his own way.  Elsewhere, we find that he goes into the mountains.  The implication is that he comes under the influence of the world, the flesh, and devil, and the lord finds that sheep and brings him back into the fold.

This word “lose”, in verse 4 and the word “loss” in verse 4 and the word “loss” in 6 are all “perishing” or losing one’s life.  When he says, “heaven rejoices over one sinner that repenteth”, this is talking about Christian sinners.  Not lost people.  Not people on their way to hell.  This has to do with sinners who repent, or return unto the fold, more than ninety and nine just persons which need no repentance.

Who are just people?  Who are the just that need no repentance in contrast to the just that need no repentance?  That’s the contrast.

[Luke 1:6]  Zechariah and Elizabeth are both righteous (just; same word).  They were both just or righteous…  Walking in those commandments; being blameless; their lives were ordered; they were walking; it was a part of their lives; it was the way they lived.  When you walk in something, this doesn’t have to do with where you step, it’s your way of life.  Zechariah and Elizabeth were just and they needed no repentance.

The implication is the sheep that is perishing is not walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord, blameless.  Today, we don’t have to walk in the ordinances, because Jesus the Christ nailed those to his cross.  That took care of that.  But, the commandments, we are responsible for; we’re responsible for following the rules; we’re responsible for running the race according to the rules.  So, we find here that Zechariah and Elizabeth are just.

What will be the consequences of the unjust?  [1 Corinthians 6:9]  “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit [it’s a family matter] the kingdom of God?”  Here is the same Greek word that we are studying; “just”; except this has the prefix “a”, meaning “unjust”.  The sheep that is going astray, or perishing, is an unjust sheep.  He is not walking in the commandments of the Lord.  Here, we find the unjust shall not inherit the Kingdom of God.

“Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.  And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.”

The implication here is that when we get away from the commandments of our Lord and get away from the Word, then we are vulnerable.  We are open to fall into this list of sins.  Look what he says here:  “He says neither fornicators…”  We can get away from the word of God and his commandments and if we stay away long enough, we can become fornicators; idolaters; adulterers; effeminate; abusers of ourselves; thieves; covetous; drunkards; revilers; extortioners.

There’s not a sin in the book that a Christian can’t commit.  And the first step in that direction is to get away from God’s Word.  I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “This book will keep you away from sin, or sin will keep you away from this book”, and that’s the truth.  When you’re in this book; when you’re in the word; when you’re having fellowship with those who love the word, you’re going to find that there’s a common encouragement to stay in the word.  That’s why the Bible says, “forsake not the assembling of yourselves together”.  And so much the more so as you see the day approaching.  It’s going to become harder and harder and harder to live an obedient Christian life.

I think that when the Lord had Paul write this passage in [1 Corinthians 10:11].  We read OT examples and types pertaining to believers; pertaining to the OT saints, whom God destroyed.  Look up here in [verse 6-7].  It’s easy to eat and drink today.  It’s easy for us to play today.  Why?  Because our society is built around fun and excitement.  The philosophy today is, “if it feels good, do it”.

[Verse 8-10:  Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed [they were perished] of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed [apollumi; perished] of the destroyer [not apollumi; the exterminator; different word.]  We’re living in an age in which we need encouragement from one another.  And these things were given unto us to help us in these last times, because it will be easy for us to become idolaters and to lust after evil things.  When you think about the TV that puts before us all sorts of evil things, think about how careful we need to be as to what we see, because we can be drawn after those things.  Idolatry, fornication, murmering, etc.

But, we find that the sheep that goes astray is an unjust sheep and he will not have an inheritance in the Kingdom of our lord and savior Jesus Christ.  And the sheep that is going astray from the flock will perish or will lose his life for the coming age.

We find this word perish back in [Luke 15].  Some of these sins in 1 Corinthians 10 were found in 1 Corinthians 6, which are things if they are found in a Christian’s life will disqualify him for an inheritance in the coming Kingdom.  Here in Luke 15, we see that the coin also carries with it the word perish in [verse 9], and also I want to show you the parallel, the Holy Spirt, the father, deals with us as far as us losing our life.  Down in [verse 17]; again the Greek word apollumi.

So, the son repented and went back to the father.  Now, you have to keep this in mind:  The son was in the father’s house; he was not lost.  He was in the family.  He decided he would go his own way; he decided to eat, drink, and be merry; he decided to live it up.  But, he came to himself and he repented.

That’s the reason the Lord says, “Heaven rejoices over one sinner that repents more than ninety-nine just”.  And so, he came to himself and said “I have sinned against heaven and before thee”, talking about his own sins, and the father received him and put on him the best robe, and a ring, and shoes on his feet, and gave him a place of honor in his home.

[Verse 24; lost-apollumi] and that’s the way it is in the father’s house.

[Luke 17:27-29:  This is talking about the days of Noah and in the days of Lot; destroyed-apollumi x 2]  The thing I want you to see is [verse 32].  Why?  [Verse 33]  Here we find “apollumi” again; it’s the same word as destroyed up in 27 and 29.  “Remember Lot’s Wife.”  She lost her inheritance.  She turned into a pillar of salt.  How terrible, right?  That is not bad, but it’s not the best.  Salt is always good until it has lost its savor.  Then, it doesn’t even help the dung pile.

[Hebrews 11]  When I think about Lot’s wife, I think about Esau and Jacob.  [Hebrews 11:20; this is talking about Isaac, Jacob & Esau]  Esau was not a lost man.  Esau is a picture of a Christian who lives in the world.  If the legal order of primogeniture was in effect here, Esau’s name would have come first, because the firstborn son is always named first; but he was disqualified from that inheritance.  So, that’s why we find Jacob first in the order of names; because he got the birthright.  What I want you to see here, though, is that Esau got a blessing also. 

[Hebrews 12:16-17]  Esau committed the sin unto death.  He lost his life.  He committed the unpardonable sin.  Esau sold his birthright.  He had no regard for the inheritance; for the blessings of the coming Kingdom; for positions of authority; for rewards.  He had no regard for all of this; he esteemed it not and he forfeited it and Jacob is the one who got it; Jacob esteemed these things.  The thing I want you to see here is, “he sought it carefully with tears”.  He wept after he found out what he had lost.

There’s going to be weeping at the Judgment Seat of Christ because of Christians who have lost their lives because they wanted to eat, drink, and be merry.  They’re going to have lost their lives because they wanted to live it up today.

[Luke 17]  We have already looked at this in other passages in Matthew 16, but look here in [verse 32-33a:  Remember Lot's wife. Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it:]  Shall perish; his life shall be lost.  That life has to do with life in the coming Kingdom; and honor and glory; sharing in the inheritance of the Lord.  [and whosoever shall lose his life] or cause his life to perish today; this is not talking about suicide, but whosoever shall cause his ambitions to be put to death.  In Colossians 3:5, we’re exhorted to mortify therefore our members so that we may seek those things that are above.

[Whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it] or shall find it.  When?  In the coming age.

[Luke 19] in closing and I want to read to you verse 10.  “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost [perishing; apollumi].”  [Luke 19:26-27]  We’ll pick up here next Sunday, Lord willing.