Sermon Summary and Discussion Questions | "Christ Our Mediator"
Said of Spurgeon, “…He seemed best pleased when he began to tell about the atonement and his sacrifice.”
The songwriter H.F. Lyte: “How blessed the congregation who the gospel know and prize!” May this be said of Sovereign Grace Church!
Mediator is the most comprehensive title and description given to the Savior. In light of Mark’s 3rd and final passion prediction (Mark 10:32-34), we now consider, in detail, the gospel and who Jesus is as the one mediator between God and man. 1 Timothy 1:2-7 explains what Mark 10:32-34 would actually and gloriously accomplish!
1. A Mediator Planned
1 Timothy 2:3-4 "….God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth."
The Divine Dilemma: God is infinitely holy, righteous, just…immortal, invisible, the only God (1 Tim.1:17) Man is lawless and disobedient; ungodly and sinful; unholy and profane (1 Tim. 1:9) God is righteously and furiously opposed to sin.
J.I. Packer: “Men are opposed to God in his sin, and God is opposed to men in his holiness.” Charles Hodge: There is a “…wicked opposition of the sinner to God, and a holy opposition of God to the sinner.”
2. A Mediator Provided
How can this dilemma be resolved?! 1 Timothy 2:5-6 "For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time."
These verses are the storyline of the Bible…the sum and substance of the message of the Bible. In the mystery of God's mercy he desires to save, but again, there is a divine dilemma. There is a need for a mediator…unique and unlike any other mediator ever known. God the holy innocent offended party desires to be reconciled but he must punish sin. The offended party provides the mediator…his only begotten Son. God is holy, but not reluctant. He is holy, but with a gracious disposition–desiring to save. We are hopelessly lost, alienated, and condemned! But God…! John 3:16.
A mediator must be able to represent both sides equally…God and man. Jesus is/does both. God accomplishes the humanly impossible by sending the sinless Son of God to live a perfect life, and dieand pay for the sins of all who believe. He pays the ransom to free us from our captivity to sin.
R.C. Sproul: “This is the glory of the gospel – the One from whom we need to be saved is the One who saved us.”
Anselm: “The debt was so great that while man alone owed it, only God could pay it.”
Leland Ryken: “The one who had given the commandments died for those who had broken them.
3. A Mediator Proclaimed
1 Timothy 2:7 For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying), a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.
In noting the effects of what has happened, we must begin with the effects on God: The righteous demands of the law are met and fulfilled. Holy judgment and wrath are satisfied through Jesus’ substitutionary death on the cross and holy hostility toward sin and sinners is appeased
Then we can consider the wondrous effect on those who believe: We have now have peace with God! All hostility between God and those who believe has ceased.
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus! (Romans 8:1)
D. Martin Lloyd-Jones: “Avoid the mistake of concentrating overmuch upon your feelings. Above all, avoid the terrible error of making them central….I must never ask myself in the first instance: What do I feel about this? The first question is, ‘Do I believe it?’”
1. List some characteristics of a person who knows and prizes the gospel (give illustrations)
2. Describe some of the faulty thinking that would lead to a lack of the fear of God.
3. What difference should an appropriate fear of God make in someone’s life?
4. Discuss the several things that John 3:16 says about God, and about man.
5. Where do we at times err in our functional understanding of God’s holiness, our sinfulness, and our efforts to attain righteousness?
6. Knowing Christ as your mediator – how does, or should, this affect your feelings? Your peace? Your joy? Your trust? Your obedience? Your witness? “The debt was so great that while man alone owed it, only God could pay it.”