I have called this Paul's confession of faith, and also his declaration. Confession, when it is truly believed calls for another statement, which is a declaration. Because of this I can say, praise God. And so this is what Paul did. He confesses and then he declares. Romans 5, "Therefore being justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." Paul's confession here is, "I am innocent, justified, declared innocent before God and since I'm declared innocent I have peace." I would say the greatest need that every individual in the world has today is for peace. Peace is a product of salvation, of knowing God. But peace is something that we must have, that peace of mind. Many believers do not have peace of mind. There are a lot of things that come against us, robbing us of peace of mind. It may be something that someone says, it may be a relationship that seems to be frayed and we don't know how to put it together again. There may be hurts, wounds, things that people have said. But when we can look up and firmly believe that God said and made the statement and that his plan was to restore us to that place of total innocence, and that when Jesus hung there on the cross, He said, "it is finished," the thing that He came to do. And as He went into the right hand of the Father instead of standing there doing the work continually now the continuing work of a High Priest and the taking care of the guilt of sin.
There were no chairs in the sanctuary or in the tabernacle, which was a type of God's dwelling place in heaven. There were no chairs or any place to sit down because the work was never finished. The pardon had to be re-written, the sins and charges had to be reviewed every year. But the Word tells us when Jesus finished His work He went into the presence of the Father and the Word tells us He sat down. I have visualized this happening. Jesus coming in, the Father saying is it working? Was it complete? Did the sacrifice literally destroy those sins? Jesus said, "It is working, take a look." God looked at it, He said, "its working, there will never have to be another sacrifice." He made the one sacrifice for sin forever, and sat down. The job is done. When we know the job is done and we've placed our faith we've literally told the Lord and mean it that our faith is in His performance, not in ours.
The Word tells us when we know we've been justified by faith in what He has done; we can take that big breath and have peace with God. The job is done, Hallelujah. You can literally hear God say, "I'm not angry with you anymore, My wrath has been turned away, it was diverted to somebody that took your place." Therefore being justified by faith we have peace with God. Declare it.
The world is so tossed, there's so much turmoil. They need peace. In your heart confess, God I believe you did it, the job's done. There are a lot of people that have confessed but they have failed to make their declaration. I want you to, and God wants you to make that real declaration. "By whom we also have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand and we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God not only so but we glory in tribulations also. Knowing that tribulation works patience, patience-experience, experience-hope and hope makes not ashamed because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost, which is given to us. For when we were yet without strength in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one day yet peradventure some may even dare to die but God demonstrated his love toward us in that while we yet sinners Christ died for us."
While we were yet sinners Christ removed the guilt and the stain because we called upon Him. Those who are troubled fearing that judgment of the believer, and it has been presented by many different groups out of ignorance but nevertheless bringing fear to people's heart. That before you knew Jesus God's love was so great for the sinner that He literally removed every trace of sin and He erased the records as far as the east is from the west but for those who have given themselves to the Lord He has a different disposition of those sins. He stacks them up in a neat little package, waiting for the judgment of the believer and then he pulls them all out and He says people have to know what a rotten Christian you really were because you did all of these things after you gave your heart to the Lord. So he has a big overhead projector and He has that screen and everybody's going to know those things, those things that were done in secret are going to be shouted from the housetops. And they get this from the reference the hidden things of darkness will be exposed. What he's literally saying there about the hidden things of darkness, he's merely telling you that those things in your life that you have not yet received credit for. You've done them not for a reward, not for glory. You've done those things for Jesus. People don't know about them but God's going to turn His big light in there. Why would he add the words right immediately after that, then shall every man have praise of God if He's exposing bad things. He's exposing good things. I think we can make a declaration of this. One of those good declarations is that shout Hallelujah. Jesus has done it.
The feeling, the teaching and there is a pamphlet out right now, somebody has quit telling people about Jesus and there starting to tell people about how ignorant Pastor Buck is in putting such a thing in a book. A thing that people are being blessed but it's not because it's the right truth. There's a little pamphlet out that states the unscriptural approach that God has given. I'm not going to take any credit for it, I'll take blame for human error, for missing the crossed t and the misspelled word but I'm not going to take credit for the truth that God has given. They're stating that I said that the judgment seat of Christ, the judgment of the believer was a day in which God has chosen to say thanks to people. I was just passing on the good word and people across the country have raised the shout Hallelujah, God is just. And here's the reason for it and you read it in the 9th verse, "Much more being justified by His blood we shall be saved from wrath through him."
What he's telling us here is, if we were sinners and God cared enough to erase the thing. Much more now that we're His will He will take care of anything that we need. Much more now, you're in the much more category now. You've reached the bonus situation because you belong to Him. People across the country are so hungry for these truths that they're literally jamming the buildings. Anything else would be totally contrary to the character of God. God doesn't need a whip to hold over you. If He can't control you any better than that He's not the God that we know Him to be. He doesn't have to threaten us. But He did tell us that the believer's judgment is not a dark night through which the believer must pass before breaking out into that eternal day. But it is a day in which God has chosen to say thanks. Can you imagine God calling you in and saying thanks to you? He cares for you. Each individual means so much to God. Praise the Lord forever. "For if when we were His enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son," another much more, another bonus situation. "Much more then being reconciled we shall be saved then through His life. And not only so but we joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ through whom we have received the atonement." Verse 17, "for if by one man's offence death reigned, from much more they which receive abundance of grace," hey there's another much more that you have to underline.
How much has death reigned? Everybody you know that is either facing death or those people that you've had to say goodbye to who have already faced it, death has reigned, that means it's in control. Every human being born into this life faces death. You begin to die the day you're born. Death reigned. Every single one faces it. But here's the bonus, much more, multiply it a hundred times, you have more chance of being in control of your life because of Jesus' promise to you than death has of taking you. Much more will you reign, you can tell the enemy beat it, I belong to Jesus. We're His. Much more can you be in the driver's seat with His hand upon your shoulder and His Spirit filling you. You don't have to just become subject and have to react constantly to the different moves of the enemy but you can respond to the love of God and reign in this life. You can take those cigarettes and grind it under your feet in Jesus name. You can take that bottle of booze and in Jesus name you can have victory over it. About 200 of you out here know that, God's delivered you from it completely.
God wants His people to be positive people. There may be some who say it's a psychological gain to them, telling them to be happy. Well if a psychological gain could do this I'm not going to be too hard on psychology. But I do know this, that there may be some psychological lift because that has do to with all of your feelings inside you see. But it comes because Jesus lives and He made a promise to us.
We're seeing God do something real special today. God has allowed us to live in the greatest days of all of history. A great shaking is taking place. I mentioned last week about this spiritual revival in Russia. God is shaking something that looked unshakable. How can you reach young people who all their lives have only heard of God in disrespect? But God found a way because He doesn't follow the rules of man. And what we thought was impossible and what has been preached for years that it's impossible, we've lost those people because the statement is if you give a child from the ages of 4-8, whatever it is, to a certain ideology there's very little chance that they'll ever be changed and it's been preached from our pulpits and we've believed it and we've passed on Satan's lie. But God says I can save anybody, I can break the strongest fetters. And so today the great move of God is among this generation, that we thought was lost. But God said not so. He has a way of injecting His life, letting them see how shabby, how empty what they hold, the castle that they built for their life looks like it's made out of paper. God is saying look what I'm offering you. A great shaking is taking place.
The breaking down of century old barriers and traditions, a God-planned oneness is taking place. Man tried by the various efforts to create an ecumenical movement to bring different church groups together. But they said now if you'll do it our way we'd like to come together, but your fudging a little bit here and you know there is just small little hair splitting differences but they don't want to give up their part of the hair and so they couldn't get together. But God's doing it. He's doing it by saying, "I can't clear up that mess up in people's minds; there will always be people who disagree, even people that are members of the same family." One likes green and another one like's red. One likes this particular philosophy and the other one likes this. They're more comfortable with it. So God said, "I'm going to bypass the whole thing. And the oneness that I am bringing is a oneness of spirit." Not so much the position and the doctrine in the head but who inhabits the heart.
I think of the stirring and the excitement especially in the catholic community here in Boise. One of the priest's told me the only thing that could make the priest's, (there are 30 of them in a meeting), that could make them any happier than the prospects of this great meeting out here in the stadium would be if Pope John Paul II came himself. They're just so excited about what is happening. So on the 2nd week of July 1980, all of you people, and all of the catholic churches of this community and all of the other churches that aren't too afraid of them and us are invited to go along with it. And one of the most powerful voices for God in the world today is going to hurl out the challenge, you need Jesus in your life. John Berlucy is going to be there. And the statement that I heard that many protestant faiths, people have a religion without Jesus. But this is an effort to bring Jesus to the community. God is doing it; He's breaking down the barriers.
There's a supernatural wave of healing going on, body, soul and spirit. Minds being healed, emotions are being healed, and bodies are being healed. God has opened up and is restoring men and women back to that point they enjoyed before sin first came. God's three R's are Reconciliation, Restoration, and Reuniting. He's in the act of reconciling now and of restoring people to Himself. In restoring them He has to take care of the sickness of the spirit. He has to take care of the sickness of the mind and the emotions and He takes care of the sickness of the body. God is doing it. He's doing it without a whole lot of help from people to. There are too many pessimistic believers. You know that's a paradox. Do you know that a pessimist is not a believer? You can't be a believer and a pessimist. A pessimist is a pessimist because he doubts it, he doesn't believe. But there are too many people who say they're believers, who are so pessimistic; they're looking for reasons why a thing isn't so, instead of reasons why it is so.
I'll never forget this pastor that sat out in the car with me. He wanted to help me to recognize the deception that I have been troubled with. I asked him don't you believe in the supernatural and miracles? He said I believe in a miracle as long as nobody has one. And I'll believe in angels as long as nobody sees one. He's a real believer. But he said if somebody comes to me and says my arm was healed, immediately I'll say it probably wasn't hurt in the first place. Never boast about being a pessimist. Ask God for grace and help to remove that spirit of unbelief. Paul spoke of it as in the days of Moses when they crossed the Red Sea into the Promised Land; the word tells us they held themselves aloof by unbelief. They stood aloof. They said I'll just wait and see, time will tell. They never want to get in on the forefront of what God is doing. They're just afraid that God isn't going to do it. They wonder whether He's really alive or not. There are some that couldn't go into the Promised Land. Unbelief had shut them out.
There are people today that have been right within one step of the Promised Land but unbelief had shot them out and turned that step into a million miles. Thank God for what He is doing today. We're living in a day when we can realize that our expression of confidence, our confession of faith brings salvation. Do you believe that Jesus died for you? Yes. I believe He died. Ok. You can make the confession because Jesus died for me and I have accepted it I am saved. If there's any question in the minds of any who are here today I want you to look at that little simple statement. He died for you, He lives for you, you've accepted what He's done, and you are saved. And God has given every believer the right to pass this word on to people who have been accepted by their confession Jesus Christ, did you know that? He's given us the right to say you are saved. And then He's given us the right to say ok now you confess it, I am saved.
Romans 10:9-10. "If we believe with our hearts and confess with our mouths that Jesus is Lord," we pull the switch that activates something that destroys every record that could ever be against us in heaven. And it removes from God's memory those things so when we look up into His face we see Him with our hearts as clean and as spotless as a newborn child, because God said it. Why do we know this is true? The highest thing that He came to do was to restore us to that point of innocence. That's why he used the term justification. Justified by faith, we have peace with God. And if He justified us we're innocent, justified by His blood.
"Much more being justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him." You're justified, counted as innocent. Declare it, confess it. So salvation is made real and is clenched through our confession. God doesn't mind if we cry out our lack, our need. After all confession is an admission of need. Peter, when he was having struggle in this life confession is still good. It doesn't hurt to tell God; sometimes we're too proud. God already sees you; He already knows you so if you're having a rough time, tell Him you're having a rough time. That's what Peter did. You remember when he was walking on the water? He started to sink, and he cried out, "Lord save me, I perish." Boy, he had a bad confession there. He just didn't know how to walk on water very good but the Lord appreciated his confession and there are times when we just need to bellow for help. God doesn't mind, in fact He's listening for you. Because as long as we say I think I can make it, then we have to have to have a deep sea rescue operation, so don't try to hang on to long.
We need to remind the Lord everyday, "you died for me, you took my place, I am saved." We also need to confess our daily position in the Lord. "I am covered. I have peace with God, I am covered." Because my faith is not in my performance but my faith is in what He has done. I am covered. It's not boasting husbands for you to look at your wife when she's accusing you of all of those bad things to look at her and say, "Hey I'm innocent." Wives you can say that to your husband. In fact it might be a good thing to help you to keep from taking things to seriously because the place where it really counts is where God is looking and if your faith is in what He has done you are innocent.
There are a lot of things that haven't been done yet. Lot of improvement down on this side but the Lord never said you were perfect down here but He did say you were innocent, justified. We need to confess to God, God my trust is in You. We need to confess to ourselves and let ourselves know where we stand. When God asks Adam and Eve where they were, it wasn't that He didn't know where they were; He wanted them to confess their need where they were. Then Adam confessed his guilt and then the Lord provided a way out and it was a blood sacrifice that was made.
In Acts 20:24 Paul makes another declaration. They had a sharp rise in the interest rates at that time. And the economy looked like it was going to fall apart. And besides that he was threatened with bankruptcy. And because he had some bills he couldn't quite pay they were going to throw him in jail. And everyplace he went there were prophecies that everything was going to be real gloomy, and a lot of prophecies that were coming from people's minds and not from the Lord. The Lord is talking to His people in a little different tone of voice. He said that though these things may come to pass I will fear no evil. A real declaration. So Paul's words here were when they came to him and said, "You're going to go to jail, you're going to be hurt, and you're going to suffer." They said you better not go Paul. You better quit doing those things that you have as goals for your life, I know you want to go there to preach to kings and I know God said you were supposed to go there and that was your calling and He prepared you for it but I don't think you better go Paul, you better wait until the economy changes. So Paul looked at them and said, "None of these move me." How about that for a declaration for today? None of these things move me.
God wants you to use good sense, after all He's given you a renewed mind, and you have 1000 times as much help as people that don't know the Lord because you have a renewed mind. And you can move with the wisdom and the direction that comes because you're in fellowship with the One who knows tomorrow. Do you believe God cares for you and knows things about your life? He knows tomorrow and you're in His hands. So Paul said, "None of these things move me." But they said, "what about these threats of death Paul?" Paul said, "Neither count I my life dear unto death." I've got a bigger job to do. That just makes the devils run and hide because here's a guy that isn't even afraid. "That I might please Him who has called me and placed me into this work." And he walked right up to Nero's chopping block, laid his head down on that block and the big old axe came down and his head rolled off on one side and his body off on the other and his spirit went right up to the Lord real fast. All he found was a release. He wasn't afraid.
He said, "I've finished my course, I've fought a good fight, I have kept the faith henceforth there's laid up for me a crown which the Lord, the righteous judge shall give me on that day," and not me only but about a thousand or two at Central Assembly who love His appearing. These are his words but also those who love His appearing. God has a crown. It is going to be an honor that God bestows upon those that love Him. So we can say with Paul in 2 Timothy 1:12, when it comes to the future why should I fear? I know Him, I know the One I've committed all of these things to and I can trust Him. So we need to make some of these confessions. I am saved. I am covered. I will reign. None of these things move me. I know Him, I can trust Him. And there is power in this kind of confession.
You remember Abraham and his followers confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on this earth. They said, "I don't want to get too attached to it." And God smiled the Word tells us and He said He was not ashamed to be called their God. He said, "Since you like a better place than the best places there are down here, watch I've prepared you one right up here." We academically say the Lord loves every one of us, the Lord knows us. But it hasn't really hit our comprehension until we suddenly hear something that awakens this and we see an example of it suddenly. I haven't had an angelic appearance in six weeks. God speaks to us through so many ways. I never know from one time to the next whether it will be the last one. But last night in my office I found out that the one six weeks ago wasn't the last one because Gabriel and Krioni came in while my head was down.
I was looking at scripture and meditating and they came in just like those people from Star Trek. They were talking to me about God's concern for the total person; our humanity even is really a concern of God's. Then I got a telephone call. A little lady called. I let it ring a few times; I kind of hated to be bothered with menial things like that while Gabriel was standing right there. And I let it ring but she was persistent so I picked it up and one of her first questions was, "have you seen any of them angels lately?" Then she told me, she said, "I've asked preachers to pray for me, I've asked my friends to pray for me and nobody seems to know how to get a hold of God and I don't know if God even knows." She said, "I'm 79 years old and my husband is sick and I have these problems" and she said, "Would you next time you see one of those angels, will you ask them if they would tell God that I really need some help?"
I said, "Well they're in here right now." She gulped a little bit and so I said, "Do you want me to ask them now?" I said, "That isn't really their work because you have the same kind of a connection as they do to talk to God. And she said, "Please ask them" and so I was going to turn and ask, not because I expected it to happen but Gabriel had been listening to the conversation and evidently has a way of picking up the sound without listening to it through the receiver and he told me that he heard what she said. And he said, "Tell Bonnie Thompson that God already knows her need and He cares for her." And so I told her and she let out a yell over the phone. She said, "You mean He even knows my name?" She had never told me anything about her name and I didn't know so I hadn't told him but God knew what her name was because He knows everybody. She already believed that God knew all about her just like you already believe but when you suddenly hear that God knows your name and each thing about you it's so much more vast, it staggers you when you think that God knows all those little things about you, four billion people and He knows all those little old things about you. He even knew the name that they called her when she was a girl. Bonnie. That really surprised her when they said Bonnie Thompson. She's just a little kid to God.
We have a hard time keeping tabs of the names of our children. I call Ted Walt sometimes, my brother, and I call my brother Ted. The Lord isn't making any mistakes like we do. He knows you. He knows your street address, He knows where you sit at the table and He knows a lot of things that you never told Him because He hears your heart when it's crying to Him. He hears expressions because His ears aren't tuned only to vocal sounds; He hears the cries that come. How about just standing and confessing your love and your faith in our wonderful Lord.