Luke: How Are Your Eyes?

Sermon by J. Ligon Duncan on July 4, 2010

Luke 11:29-36

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The Lord’s Day Morning

July 4, 2010




Luke 11:29-36


“How Are Your Eyes?”

Dr. J. Ligon Duncan III

If you’d take your bulletins in hand I want to point out a few things to you
about the service today. It is July
the fourth. It is the day that we,
as citizens of the United
States
and as Christians, express thanksgiving to God for the freedoms, the very costly
freedoms that we enjoy. That’s an
appropriate thing for us to do as Christians.
It’s also very important and appropriate for us to remember, since this
day coincides with the Lord’s Day, the Day of Resurrection, the day in which we
celebrate the liberating resurrection of Jesus Christ, to simply remember that
the greatest freedom that we have comes from Christ, that in His life and death
and resurrection He has given us a freedom that not only exists now but which
will exist forever. And so even as
we thank God for the costly sacrifices of our forbearers and of those today who,
in the far-flung places of the world protect our freedoms and seek to foster the
freedoms of others, and even as we thank God for them, that we never forget to
thank God for the Lord Jesus Christ and the liberty that He has won us.

Notice that right after Derek prays the morning prayer we will sing the national
hymn that was written on the occasion of the hundredth anniversary of the
Declaration of Independence in 1876.
It’s a wonderful prayer to God to continue to preserve us.
It acknowledges God as the source of all our liberties and it asks the
Lord to continue to preserve our land in those liberties. It’s good, rich,
biblical supplication, “God of our Fathers,” and we’ll sing that appropriately
on this Lord’s Day.

You may want to go ahead and open your hymnals to number sixty-six.
Our opening song of praise deliberately acknowledges God’s sovereignty.
Jesus is King – in the dominion of His church there is no other prince,
there is no other ruler, there is no other king.
The Lord Jesus reigns. He is
the King and head of His church. And
so we’ll acknowledge God’s sovereignty singing number sixty-six, which is
actually a psalm. It’s part of Psalm 76.
And we’ll begin and you may want to use those words as we prepare for
worship together.

We’re working through the gospel of Luke.
We’re in Luke 11:29-36 today.
It’s a passage in which crowds are pressing in on Jesus and He turns around to
those crowds and He says something that very few preachers would have the
courage to say today. He looks at
them and He says, “You are an evil generation.”
And thus begins a very, very important series of illustrations that Jesus
gives to the generation that He was speaking to in order to uncover the secret
sins of their hearts. And His words
to them, two thousand years ago almost, are just as timely — and I’d argue
almost more so — to us today than even to that group that He spoke to almost two
thousand years ago. So let’s prepare
to worship the living God together.


O come, let us sing unto the
Lord. Let us shout joyfully to the
Rock of our salvation. Let us come
before His presence with thanksgiving.
Let us shout joyfully to Him with songs for the Lord is a great God, a
great King above all gods. Let us
worship Him!

Now let’s look to God in prayer. Let
us all pray.


Heavenly Father, on this holiday
weekend and this Independence Day, we give thanks to You for the gift and
blessing of the freedom we enjoy in this our great nation, from sea to shining
sea. We are thankful for the
Christian and religious convictions of the founding fathers as they struggled to
build a new country and create a new way of living with a goal of freedom and
justice for all. Today, many of
these freedoms are under threat, and therefore Lord we pray in particular for
the deliberations of the Supreme Court, that You would reverse the trend toward
intolerance of Christianity in the public place.
You are sovereign, O Lord, and can overturn appointments made by man in
particular.


We pray this morning for the
unborn and the defenseless and ask for mercy upon our national sins.
We are conscious of many sins, and this morning collectively we confess
to You and ask for the Spirit’s help in repentance.
Wash and cleanse us afresh in the blood that is able to cleanse from all
sin. For we say with the psalmist,
“Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your loving-kindness.
According to the multitude of Your tender mercies, blot out my
transgressions. Wash me, thoroughly,
from my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.”
We recognize, O Lord, that we have no right to such blessings as freedom
and like Christians in the past, You may well have another design for us,
designs which will call upon us to sacrifice and endure persecution.
Enable us for the fight that may lie ahead of us.
Give us renewed conviction in the power of the Word of God and the
indwelling of the Holy Spirit that we might fight the good fight of faith and
endure to the end. Help us dare to
be a Daniel in the midst of a hostile government.
We pray for our soldiers in the battlefields of
Iraq
and Afghanistan.
We thank You for their skill and bravery.
We pray for victory over the forces that week to undo our freedom and
liberty.


We thank You Lord for the
courageous self-sacrifice and generous spirit of countless people who have given
their life’s blood in the defense of freedom and for the pursuit of justice.
We pray for the many hundreds of soldiers in such hospitals as the
WalterReedMedicalCenter in Washington, many of whom have lost limbs for
us. We pray for our enemies that
their swords as well as ours may be turned into plowshares.
We also pray this morning for the Gulf
and for the continued devastation caused by the oil leak beneath the sea.
We pray for the success of this most recent attempt to stem the flow of
this oil. You are sovereign and it
is but a little thing for You. Have
mercy on us, we pray.


And now Lord our hope is in You
and in the Gospel and the liberty that comes in knowing Jesus Christ as Lord and
Savior. For if we are free in Him we
are free indeed. May Your Word be
effective today in the conversion of many and the transformation of lives given
over to Satan. May this Independence
Day be a harvest day of souls for the
kingdom
of God.
And bless us and hear us for the sake of our Lord and Savior, Jesus
Christ, we ask it. Amen.


Amen. If you have your Bibles I’d
invite you to turn with me to Luke chapter 11 as we continue our way through the
gospel of Luke, looking at a passage in which Jesus has just performed a mighty
miracle. He’s cast a demon out of
man that had caused the man to be mute and for this great act He is rewarded
with the response of many in the multitude that He has done this miracle by the
power of Satan. And one godly woman
in that crowd cries out when He responds to His accusers and acknowledges His
heavenly wisdom. But the passage
that we’re reading today continues Jesus’ interaction with those in the
multitudes that were crowding around Him and listening to His preaching, but who
were in fact in their own hearts rejecting His teaching and sometimes out loud,
challenging His teaching. And in
fact, this dialogue will continue the next time we’re in this passage because
picking up in Luke 11:37 Jesus will pronounce a series of woes on the scribes
and Pharisees, those who were the transcribers and the teachers of the law in
the land, and those who were part of a lay-renewal movement of elders in local
synagogues calling Israel back to the Bible as it were, and yet these people
were rejecting Jesus and He’s going to pronounce woes upon them.
So all of what is going on in Luke 11 is a part of a piece.
Luke is showing you the opposition that Jesus faced in His own public
ministry and the prophetic way that He confronted that opposition.

Now as we prepare to read verses 29 to 36 let me say that the passage could be
broken down into two parts. If you look at 29 to 32, Jesus tells of two
witnesses that will witness against those who are opposing His ministry at the
final resurrection. And those two
witnesses are the Ninevites — now those are non-Israelites.
You remember Nineveh is the city that the prophet Jonah
eventually went to much against his will.
He wanted to go to his own people and so he ran away.
He tried to get on a ship and go to the opposite end of the world in
Tarshish and the Lord threw him off that ship and into the water and into the
belly of a great fish who deposited him onto the shore in the direction of
Nineveh and he eventually wound up going to this group of pagans and he preached
to them. Do you remember his
gracious message? “Yet in forty
days, Nineveh
will be destroyed!” — not very gracious sounding, is it?
But he was actually preaching repentance.
He was saying, “Your wickedness deserves destruction and if you don’t
repent in forty days the Lord is going to bring destruction on your city.”
And you know what those pagans did?
They repented. So Jesus uses
them as an illustration of repentance.

Then again look at verses 29 to 32.
He tells of another witness and this witness is the queen of the South, probably
the Queen of Ethiopia who comes to Solomon.
You remember she heard of Solomon’s wisdom but especially she wanted to
hear it for herself. And so she came
with gifts and she wanted to sit under his wisdom and she sought out that
wisdom. And He uses these two as
illustrations of the proper response to the Word of God.

Then in the second part of the passage we’re going to read today — if you look
at verses 33 to 36 — Jesus tells a rather odd story.
If you’re like me, when you first read this story your response is,
“Okay, I think I understand parts of the analogy here, but I’m not following all
of the analogy here.” It’s about a
lamp and it’s about a lamp put in a home and where you would put that lamp in a
home in order to light the home. And
then Jesus starts talking about our eyes. Now in the story, the lamp refers to
the light that Jesus alone brings.
And the eyes refer to the instrument of our bodies that either receives that
light or doesn’t. If they eyes are
somehow defective or diseased, they don’t properly receive light and thus we
bump into things or we don’t see clearly or we’re darkened.
And so He’s using this story as a spiritual analogy of the people we are
rejecting His teaching. So look for
those two parts as we read this passage — 29 to 32 with the stories of Jonah and
the queen of the South, and then the story of the lamp in verses 33 to 36.

And if you wanted to hang this message on three words you could hang it on these
words: repentance, wisdom, and
Gospel, because we’re going to look at repentance through the story of Jonah,
we’re going to look at wisdom through the story of the queen of the South and
Solomon, and we’re going to look at the Gospel through not only the story of the
lamp, but what Jesus says about this generation only getting one sign.
And you remember what that sign was?
The sign of Jonah. And once
we’re done with the sermon I want you to see how the sign of Jonah is directly
related to the Gospel. Let’s pray
before we read God’s Word.


Lord, this is Your Word.
It is absolutely true. It is
utterly flawless. It is powerful.
It is effective. It’s sharper
than any two-edged sword. It can
pierce down to the deepest parts of our hearts and show us right and wrong and
show where we’re sinful and You are sovereign and good.
It is necessary. We need it
as much as we need food because “man doesn’t live by bread alone but by every
word that proceeds from the mouth of God” and it is fully sufficient to equip
the man or woman of God in every good work.
But because we are sinners, without the help of Your Spirit, even the
truth of Your Word could go bad on us because as sinners we can take the most
precious things in the world and they can fall fallow in our hearts and souls.
Lord, do not allow this thing.
Awaken us by Your grace. Give
us new life in our hearts. By Your
Spirit, open our eyes to behold wonderful things in Your Word.
We beg this in Jesus’ name.
Amen.

This is the Word of God. Hear it:

“When the crowds were
increasing, He began to say, ‘This generation is an evil generation.
It seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of
Jonah. For as Jonah became a sign to
the people of Nineveh, so will the Son of Man be to this
generation. The queen of the South
will rise up at the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn them,
for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and
behold, something greater than Solomon is here.
The men of Nineveh
will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they
repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is
here.

No one after lighting
a lamp puts it in a cellar or under a basket, but on a stand, so that those who
enter may see the light. Your eye is
the lamp of your body. When your eye
is healthy, your whole body is full of light, but when it is bad, your body is
full of darkness. Therefore be
careful lest the light in you be darkness.
If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, it will be
wholly bright, as when a lamp with its rays gives you light.’”

Amen, and thus ends this reading of God’s holy, inspired, and inerrant Word.
May He write its eternal truth upon all our hearts.

How are your eyes? I don’t
necessarily mean these. Mine are
getting fuzzier. You’re seeing that
more and more as I push the thing back again and print my text out in
sixteen-point type and things like that.
I’m talking about your spiritual eyes.
How clearly are you seeing things in life?
How clearly are you seeing yourself?
How well do you understand yourself?
Are you able to be honest about what you’re like inside?
Are you able to see your sin and your need?
Are you able to see evidences of grace in your life, of the work of God’s
Holy Spirit in you causing you to hate that which pleases him and to love Him
and love what pleases Him and to pursue after Him more than you pursue after
other things?

How’s your spiritual sight? Can you
see yourself? Can you see yourself
in light of God’s Word? How’s your
spiritual sight? Are you locked in
on the true wisdom? When you hear
true, heavenly wisdom does it resonate with you because there’s a little bit of
that already in you and so when you hear it, when you hear the truth you know it
because that truth is already, parts of it are already in you and so when you
hear the real truth you immediately resonate with it?
Can you say that? Or do you
find yourself lacking discernment when it comes to spiritual things and you
can’t really tell right from wrong and truth from error when it’s spoken because
that truth really hasn’t taken root in your heart?

And how about Jesus and the Gospel?
Are the eyes of your heart fixed on Him?
Is there anything in this world more valuable, more precious than Him?
Despite the fact that you know a lot of Bible and you know a lot about
God, are there in fact, things in your life that are far more important to you
than God and His glory, Christ and His kingdom, the salvation which He offers?
These are the kinds of questions that Jesus is pressing home in this
passage with the story of Jonah, the story of Solomon, and the story of the
lamp. And I want us to look together
at three things that we learn out of this passage.


I. Jonah – The grace of repentance.

And the first thing that I want you to see is the grace of repentance.
Look especially at verse 32.
Jesus, as He tells the story of Jonah and the people of
Nineveh says this, “The men of Nineveh will rise up at
the judgment with this generation and condemn it for they repented at the
preaching of Jonah and something greater than Jonah is here.”
Jesus is contrasting the people of Nineveh with the people of
His generation. The people of Nineveh repented.
The people of His generation don’t and didn’t.
The people of Nineveh really knew very little Bible.
The people of His generation knew a lot about the Bible and they knew a
lot about God. They’d had their
Hebrew Bibles. They’d been taught
the Torah, the first five books of the Bible, by their elders and by the
prophets and by the scribes going all the way back to Ezra.
Every Sabbath Day they came in the synagogue and they heard the Word of
God read and explained and they sang the psalms together and they prayed in the
language of Scripture, and so the Bible was all around them.
They had memorized big parts of the Bible and yet, when Jesus came, they
didn’t repent. When John called them
to repentance and when Jesus called them to repentance they didn’t repent.

And so Jesus tells this story. He
says, “You know, the prophet Jonah went to pagan, heathen Ninevites, people that
weren’t from Israel, and he preached ‘forty days and Nineveh will be destroyed’ and you know what Nineveh did?
They repented even though they didn’t know much about God, and they’d
never ever read a Bible. When a
prophet of the Lord went and preached the Gospel, by the grace of the Holy
Spirit they repented.”
And yet Jesus says to this generation, “You’re an evil generation.
I’ve preached to you and you’ve not repented.”

You know, I think these words to Jesus’ generation are just as true and maybe
more so for us. We know, those of us
gathered in this room know a lot of Bible.
Now I want to say especially to those of you who are students — maybe
you’ve gone to the Day School or maybe you’ve grown up in the
Catechism, or maybe you’ve had faithful parents who had family
worship with you, or maybe you’ve had Sunday School teachers or VBS teachers
who’ve just been pouring the Bible into you all your life.

Isn’t it interesting how young people like that can go off to college sometimes
and young people who’ve not had any of the advantages that you have had —
sitting under the faithful preaching of the Word, being schooled in the truth by
those who minister to you as students and by your parents and by your pastors —
very often those students who know very little Bible and very little about God,
when they are confronted with faithful, biblical teaching and proclamation,
maybe in the context of a campus fellowship in college, they’ll come to faith in
Christ. They’ll repent of their
sins. They’ll see their need and
they’ll run to the Savior. They’ll
believe the Gospel. And yet,
there’ll be other kids who know a lot about the Bible and they know a lot about
God and their hearts will be cold.
They’ll be satisfied with making sure that they look good on the outside, that
they are externally religious and spiritual, that they show up enough at church
to keep their parents from being concerned, but inside their hearts are darkened
and hard and they haven’t repented.
Isn’t that ironic?

There’s a message for us in this passage.
Don’t play external games with God.
Christianity is a religion of the heart and
an unrepentant heart does not know God.
I don’t care how much about your Bible you know, how much about God you
know. If you haven’t seen your sin,
if you haven’t seen your need, and you haven’t run to the Savior and begged Him
for forgiveness, then you don’t know God.
You’re under the same condemnation that Jesus is pronouncing on His
generation. He looks up at this
Bible-believing generation of people and He says, “You’re an evil generation.”
Why? Not because they read
their Bibles, not because they have a high view of their Bibles, but because
they’ve read their Bible and they have a high view of the Bible and they haven’t
repented. They haven’t embraced
Christ. They haven’t embraced the
Gospel. This is a word for us.

And doesn’t this remind us about the grace of repentance?
The grace of repentance is no common gift.
It’s a unique blessing of God.
Isn’t it ironic that so often those who know so little come to faith in
Christ, while those who know so much remain hard and cold towards the Gospel?
It’s a warning that Jesus is giving to His generation.
It’s a warning for you and me today.


II. Solomon — The wisdom of God.

But then I want you to see what we learn from verse 31 and this story about the
queen of the South and the wisdom of Solomon.
We see something here of a picture of the thirst for true wisdom.
Look at verse 31 — “The queen of the South will rise up at the judgment
with the men of this generation and condemn them.”
Why? “For she came from the
ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold something greater
than Solomon is here.” It’s
quite extraordinary. This queen of
the South, as far as we know, has no exposure to the truth of Moses in the first
five books of the Bible or to the preaching of the Hebrew prophets.
She’s perhaps all the way from Ethiopia and the Israelites thought
of that part of the world as the virtual end of the world towards the south.
And she came a long way, having heard of the reputation of Solomon, and
she came bearing gifts. You remember
the story in the Old Testament. And
she came to hear Solomon’s wisdom.
And what Jesus is saying is this — when she heard of Solomon there was something
in her that resonated, she recognized the wisdom that he had to offer, and she
longed, she thirsted for that wisdom.

Now He contrasts her with the scribes and the Pharisees and the religious
leaders and the others in the multitude who have heard wisdom incarnate, the
Word incarnate, the Word made flesh — Jesus Himself.
They haven’t gone a long way to hear His wisdom, He’s come a long way to
reveal His wisdom. He’s come to them
and yet He’s right in their midst and what?
They don’t pay Him any attention whatsoever.
In fact, when He speaks wisdom — though this one godly woman we saw last
week, she recognized wisdom when she heard it and she blessed Him and she got a
blessing back — but most of the crowd said, “Oh, He must work for Satan!
His power must come from Satan!”
How blind could they be to true wisdom?
It’s an indication, you see, that their hearts were darkened, that their
eyes had not been enlightened by the true lamp.
You know, if they’d really known and understood their Bibles they would
have immediately recognized the truth of what He was saying; they would have
resonated. Have you ever noticed that?
If you know a little, deep in your heart, about what the real story of
the Bible is all about and you hear a faithful preacher — he doesn’t have to be
a famous preacher, all he has to do is be a faithful preacher of God’s Word —
and what happens when you’re sitting under that ministry?
You go, “Yes, I resonate with this.
I recognize this. I’ve heard
this before. I’ve been taught this
before. Yes, he’s teaching me new
things that I’ve never quite been able to put together before and yes this is
impacting my heart in a way that I deeply need but I recognize it because I’ve
been in my Bible and the Bible’s begun to shape my thinking and my heart and my
mind. And so as that faithful
preacher ministers the Word I recognize that truth.”
And the fact that these people who knew a lot about the Bible didn’t
respond to Jesus’ wisdom shows you that they really didn’t understand their
Bibles because if they did, they would have resonated with the wisdom He was
preaching.

And so let me ask you this — when you’re under faithful Bible teaching do you
resonate with it? You say, “Yes, I
recognize that. I recognize how the
Lord deals with their sin in the Scripture and I realize how the Scripture is
dealing with my sin in the sermon. I
recognize how the Lord exalts Himself in the Scripture and I see how the Lord is
exalting Himself in my heart in the preaching of this Scripture.”
Do we thirst after that wisdom?
Do we want that wisdom more than anything else?
The fact that the scribes and the Pharisees and the others in this crowd
that rejected Jesus could sit there and listen to His heavenly wisdom and
ascribe it to Satan is just a picture of the darkness of their hearts.
That’s why He goes to this lamp story.


III. The lamp — Spiritual eyes to see the Gospel

Jesus uses this lamp story on more than occasion.
It’s in a different place in His preaching in Matthew but here He uses it
because it’s the perfect illustration of the problem of these people.
Their hearts have not been enlightened by the true light and that’s the
third thing I want you to see. Jesus
speaks here of the importance of having sight to see the Gospel.
Do you have sight to see Jesus, to understand who He is, to believe who
He is, to understand the Gospel, and to believe the Gospel?
That’s what this story is about.
Look at what Jesus says. Look
at verse 33 — “No one after lighting a lamp puts it in a cellar or under a
basket but on a stand so that those who enter may see the light.”
Jesus used very common illustrations that everybody could understand.

In a house built by somebody that lived in the area, there would have been no
cellar typically. And typically
there would have been one room and somewhere in that room on a high stand there
would have been a lamp. For us,
lamps with candles are typically decorative things.
When we’re having a nice party at our home or it’s a festive holiday
season, there’re lamps everywhere and they’re lit.
This is not a decorative thing.
This is a very, very important functional thing.
They did not have electricity.
This is the way this house was lighted at night and without that lamp on
the stand, without being able to have that light in the room you would have
bumped into things, you wouldn’t have been able to find your way around.
It’s a very important thing.
So here’s the illustration — one room Palestinian house, He says, “You would
never put your lamp on a stand in the middle of the room to light the room and
then put a basket over it because the room would be darkened.”
Nor Greek house — very often you had multiple rooms and you had a cellar.
If you had a Greek house you wouldn’t take the lamp and instead of
putting it in the vestibule, the very entrance hall so that the minute you
walked in the front door already the entrance hall was lit with light, you
wouldn’t take that and put it downstairs in the cellar.

In the illustration Jesus is the light and His point is this — if you don’t see
Me, you won’t be able to see anything.
If you don’t believe on Me, your
heart will be dark
. If you stick
me down in the cellar or you put a basket over Me, then your heart is going to
be darkened because I’m the only source of light to come into your eyes and to
be able to show you around. I’m the
one that enlightens the human heart.
I show you your sin, I show you your need, I show you the way of salvation, I
show you the Gospel. And Jesus says,
“Do you have the sight to see Me? Do
you have the sight to see the Gospel?
Have your eyes been enlightened by Me, the lamp, the light?”

He also says something very interesting.
If you look back in verses 29 and 30 He says, when the crowds are
increasing, “You’re an evil generation.”
And then we find out why He says that they’re an evil generation. Because
why? “It seeks for a sign.”
Now wait a second here folks, Jesus has just in the company of these
folks cast out a demon. I trust,
among those of you who are believers, were I to do that I would have your full
attention. Jesus however does this
and the response is, “Hmmm…He must be doing this by Satan’s power.
So Jesus, if You’re really going to show us that You’re from God, You’re
going to have to do a sign.” Okay,
like He’s not already done one! And
like whatever He does they’re not going to ascribe it to Satan, but they demand
a sign.

And what’s Jesus’ response? “You’re
not going to get a sign from Me except the sign of Jonah.”
Now what is the sign of Jonah?
Could it be Jonah’s preaching for repentance because Jonah preached that
Nineveh needed
to repent and Jesus and John the Baptist preached that their generation needed
to repent? Well yes, that parallel
is important but Jesus is saying more than that.

Look at the language of verse 29 — “It seeks for a sign but no sign will be
given it except the sign of Jonah” and then look at verse 30 “for as Jonah
became a sign.” Ah-ha!
It’s not the sign of what Jonah preached that’s the sign of Jonah —
what’s the sign of Jonah? Jonah’s
the sign of Jonah, because Jonah, when he tried to run away from Nineveh, ended up in the belly of a big fish
for three days. Now normally when
you are ingested by a large, sea-gulling creature for three days you die.
Somehow he ends up on the shore and on his way to
Nineveh
alive. On the third day he comes out
of the watery grave of this sea beast and ends up on dry land alive and able to
preach the Gospel. And what was
that? A sign to Nineveh.
As it were, God is saying, “Nineveh,
I am sending someone to you back from the dead to preach repentance.”
And Jesus says to this generation, “Here’s the only sign you’re going to
get — the sign of Jonah.”

On the third day He rose again from the dead and He declared to them the Gospel.
He accomplished salvation in His life, His death, His burial, His
resurrection. Can you hear the words
of Paul in 1 Corinthians 15 verses 1 through 4?
That “He died for our sins according to the Scriptures and was buried and
raised again on the third day according to the Scriptures so that we might be
justified,” so that we might be saved.
And Jesus is saying, “That’s the sign that I’m going to give this
generation, the sign of Jonah. It’s
going to be My resurrection that is the sign because that’s the Gospel itself,
that by My life, My death, My burial, and My resurrection I bring to salvation
all who trust in Me.”

So Jesus is saying, “Do you have sight to see that sign?
Do you have sight to see the sign of the son of Jonah?
Do you have sight to see Jesus?
Do you have sight to see the Gospel?
Have your eyes been opened to understand that He is the only way of
salvation and to believe on Him and to treasure Him more than anything else in
this world? Does your sight show you
that there’s nothing in this life as precious as He is, that there’s nothing in
this life that can give you satisfaction like He can, there’s nothing even
close? Do you have that sight?
Jesus is challenging His generation with that message.
He’s challenging you and me with that message.
This is huge for us. Jesus is
saying, “Don’t play games with God.
Make sure your eyes see Jesus and the Gospel because it’s by that light and that
light alone that your body is enlightened.
Otherwise, there will be nothing but darkness in you, because apart from
Me, you are still dead in trespasses and sins and your eyes are blind.
You can walk around in noon-day sun and see nothing, not because the sun
is not bright but because your eyes are darkened.
They’re on the wrong thing.
They’re diseased, they’re closed, they’re dead.”
The sun is bright. Jesus is
shining. But unless your eyes are
enlightened by that lamp, that light, Jesus Christ, you have no hope.

My friends, this is a very simple message but it is a very central message.
Jesus is calling His generation and you and me, who have enormous
privileges. We have our Bibles.
We have so many Bibles that we have Bibles at home collecting dust.
We have Sunday School, we have Catechism, we have family worship, we have
faithful Bible preaching Sunday after Sunday, but do we repent and do we see
Jesus and do we see His wisdom and do we see His Gospel?
Every single one of us has to do business with God in our hearts there.
May God not let us play games.
May He grant to us true repentance.
Let’s pray.


Our heavenly Father, we ask that
You would show us Jesus and show us the Gospel and enlighten our eyes to the
truth and that You would be our vision.
We ask this in Jesus’ name.
Amen.

Now in the response to the preaching of God’s Word let’s sing the first stanza
of number 642, “Be Thou My Vision.”

Now receive a blessing from the God who gives the grace of repentance, from the
God who alone can bestow on you heavenly wisdom, from the God who has given His
Son Jesus so that by the Gospel you might enjoy eternal fellowship with Him.
Receive His benediction.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
Amen.

© 2019 First Presbyterian Church.

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