Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Notes from Sunday Afternoon's Sermon (Joel Beeke)

Dr. Joel Beeke in the pulpit of the RPCLA
This past Lord's Day, my family and I, and a friend from Communion Presbyterian Church drove up to Los Angeles to attend an afternoon Psalm sing and worship service at the Reformed Presbyterian Church of L. A. where Dr. Joel Beeke would be preaching (due to traffic, we arrived too late for the Psalm sing, and just as the worship service was beginning--Life in Los Angeles!). It was a blessing to be able to worship with my Covenanting Presbyterian brethren. The sermon by Dr. Beeke was on the topic of "Running the Good Race." His text was Hebrews 11:37-12:3. It was an encouraging word and I appreciated being able to hear a man I respect preach in person. Below are my notes from the sermon, which I hope are useful to you.

I should add that after the service, I was able to meet Dr. Beeke (who graciously signed a couple of books for me) and Rev. Nathan Eshelman, the pastor of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Los Angeles.

Dr. Joel Beeke
RPCNA Los Angeles
February 26, 2012
Hebrews 11:37-12:3

"Keep on keeping on."
"Remaining a Christian is as much a miracle as conversion."

Running The Race:
    1. The Mission (what we are to do)
    2. The Manner (how we are to do it)
    3. The Motives (what is to move us to do it)

    - Living antithetically
    - To continue under pain without flinching

    - Run the race by not sinning
    - Don't desensitize your conscience
    - A Christian has NO BUSINESS sinning!
    - Sin is a foreign intruder in the home (heart) of the Christian
    - Bunyan's example of Mr. Sin knocking at the door.
      - (To open the door and see sin, and then slam the door in Sin's face is no sin. To invite Mr. Sin into your home IS sin.)
    - Romans 7 struggle
    - Set aside the sins that so easily besets us--even if it's not something sinful (Dr. Beeke's example of basketball taking up too much of his time when he was converted).
    - Deny those things that hinder our progress in Christ. Deny ourselves.
    - Sin is spiritual insanity
    - No race is only negative
      - The positive of the Christian race is looking to Jesus.
      - Jesus is uniquely qualified as our savior, author, finisher alpha, omega, etc.
      - Old Christians are beautiful (Dr. Beeke's mother. Dr. Beeke's father--a Ruling Elder for 40 years!)

Motivation (Be motivated by...):
    1. What Christ endured (the cross)
    2. What Christ rejoiced in (the resurrection/ascension/victory of Christ). Christians have the best of both worlds: joy in this life, true joy in eternity. We will no longer see Jesus through a glass dimly lit but face to face.
    3. What He despised (v 2). The shame. What does God think of you? Despise the fear of man! "The smile and frown of God is of more weight than the smile and frown of men." John Brown of Haddington
    4. The cloud of witnesses! Hebrews chapter 11. By faith Abel being dead yet speaks! Enoch walked with God. Has Enoch ever motivated you? David in the Psalms. 2000 years of church history!

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