Cornerstone Gospel Church

What shall it profit a man – Gospel Message

March 26, 2017 ()

Bible Text: Matthew 16:26 |

For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what shall a man give in return for his life? ~ Matthew 16:26:

If there’s one thing about humans, it’s that we love life.

  • even if our life is miserable, we still love to be alive

When a mosquito buzzes around our head, we very quickly clap our hands (to kill it)

When a dog gets sick and feeble we take it to the vet to be put down.

But when a child is in danger, we go to the ends of the earth to rescue them.

There is something about human life that is special. Sacred as it were.

We spend billions of dollars each year to keep people alive

Because, generally speaking, people want to live.

price of eyes…

value of soul…

What’s it worth if you gain the whole world?

If you’re the richest, most powerful, beautiful person in the world

What’s that all worth 5 seconds after you die?

You can’t takes riches with you

You can’t take power with you

For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life?

You don’t want to be the fool.

The fool who gets distracted, and busy with everything, except that which actually matters.

The one who counts on tomorrow, but finds tomorrow never comes.

You can’t count on tomorrow to get things right with God

No one has the guarantee of another day, or another breath for that matter.

We are but one heartbeat from eternity.

In Luke 12 we hear the story of a rich man in a prosperous land, who said to himself: “17 ‘What shall I do, since I have no place to store my crops?’ “Then he said, ‘This is what I will do: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. ‘And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years to come; take your ease, eat, drink and be merry.”’ “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your soul is required of you; and now who will own what you have prepared?’”

Ecclesiastes… great book… very sobering…

Life is vanity, because it doesn’t matter what you do, you still end up dead.

10 out of 10 people die.

The conclusion to the book of Ecclesiastes is: [12:13] “fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. 14For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.”

Everything else in life is vanity except our position before Almighty God.

Why?

Because we must face Him on the day of Judgement.

Where everything we have done, said, & thought, will come out.

EVERYTHING!

Whether you did it in secret, like watching things you shouldn’t, or stealing things from work.

Or whether you did it in public, like gossiping, slandering, lying, blaspheming.

EVERYTHING! big & small

From when you were a youth, and every single second since.

What’s worst (for us) is that nothing can be hidden from God, He forgets NOTHING.

Hebrews 4:13 “no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.”

That is the big one.

When you have to give account, how will you stand?

When you’re before the Judge of all the earth.

What pithy excuse will there be for a life-time of sin & selfishness?

What ridiculous effects of self-justification will come spewing out then?

Nothing else will matter then

You wont care how big your house was,

Or how many cars you owned.

You wont care what school your kids went to.

Or how many holidays you went on.

When the day of reckoning comes, NOTHING else will matter.

And that’s what our first scripture verse is getting at.

For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what shall a man give in return for his life? ~ Matthew 16:26:

It will profit a man NOTHING if he gains the whole world, and loses his soul.

And men would give EVERYTHING to save it.

And yet, in one sense, there is absolutely nothing we can do to save it.

We’ve already stuffed up

We’ve already got the shady past

What hope is there for a rotten sinner like me.

The other night I was trying to explain to my daughters why it is, that only God can forgive sin.

So I explained that because sin is by definition disobeying God’s rules, sin is therefore against God, and He is the only one who can forgive it.

Just like if I offended my wife, it’s not up to my cousin to forgive me. If the transgression is only against my wife, then only she can forgive me.

Likewise, only God can forgive our sin. For sin is our disobedience to His command.

As King David said, “Against You, You only have I sinned and done this evil in Your sight.”

But the added problem we have is that God is Holy, and Righteous, and Just.

He can’t hand out pardons willy-nilly.

We have broken divine laws, and are therefore criminals before God.

We must either pay the fine or do the time.

And in our case, the sentence was declared long ago. “The soul that sins shall die”.

No amount of good works, church attendance, or charity can bribe God to let us go.

God will not be bribed.

No amount of good works can remove the past, or cancel God’s Judgement.

All our attempts at attaining a right standing before God, are but filthy rags.

In fact, it’s an insult to even try to make it on your own.

Thankfully for us, God is not ONLY Holy, Righteous & Just, but He is also Merciful and Gracious and Kind.

He knew we were helplessly lost in our own filth.

He knew we would go astray.

He had a plan of redemption, marked out long ago, before the world began.

That He would show forth His kindness, and grace, and redeem a people for Himself.

God says in Isaiah “"I, even I, am the LORD, And there is no saviour besides Me.” 43:11

God is the only available saviour to humanity.

And God came as the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.

God incarnate. Born of a virgin. Born under the law, that He might redeem us from the curse of the law.

He was the One who would bring about justice and mercy.

Justice: in that He would pay the debt that was owed. The debt of our sin

And Mercy: in that through faith in His name, we could be made righteous, and receive a full pardon.

This Jesus, who was nailed to a cross to take the full punishment of God for our sin

Who died and was buried.

Also rose again on the third day.

This Jesus, is the only One who can fulfil the question: “What hope is there for a rotten sinner like me.”

There is hope in Jesus, and only Jesus.

“"And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”” Act 4:12

Is this gift of salvation applied to everyone.

No, for the Scriptures declare that God “commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness”

We must repent from our evil deeds, because there is a day of Judgement coming.

But repentance alone wont do it. That is just the natural reaction of grief, sorrow and contrition, when we realise our lives of sin and rebellion.

But the call is that we: “must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus.” Acts 20:21

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life”. John 3:16

You can have everlasting life, if you will but Trust Alone in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Forsake all else, and trust in Him

Give up this world, and trust in Him.

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Eph 2:8-9

Matt 16:24 “Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 25 For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?”

Your soul is worth giving everything else up for.

For the world as we know it, is temporary and fleeting.

But the Soul is eternal.

You’ve got but this life only, to decide the rest of eternity.

Will you squander God’s offer of salvation, for a moment of pleasure?

Or will you give it all up, deny yourself, take up your death sentence, and follow Christ alone?

The gift of salvation is FREE, but will cost you EVERYTHING

It’s profoundly simple, yet perplexes all who partake of it.

God is “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ; trust in His saving work on the cross.

Call on Him today to save you.

The bible says “The blood of Jesus … cleanses us from all sin” 1 Jn 1:7

If you truly believe in Him, the full merit of Jesus’ perfect righteousness is credited to you.

God justifies the ungodly by reckoning (or crediting) Christ’s righteousness to them. (Rom 4:5)

Meaning, you are no longer considered guilty. You are no longer a dirty rotten sinner in God’s eyes.

You can escape the final judgement knowing you have Jesus’ perfect righteousness applied to you.

It’s that simple, repent and trust alone in the Lord Jesus Christ.

There are no magic words that will do it.

God hears those who who come to Him with a humble and contrite heart.

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