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The forgotten key to biblical evangelism (Living Waters transcript)

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“‘I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived’ (Romans 7:9). So it is with the work-righteous and the proud unbelievers. Because they do not know the Law of God, which is directed against them, it is impossible for them to know their sin. Therefore also they are not amenable to instruction. If they would know the Law, they would also know their sin; and sin to which they are now dead would become alive in them.”
A Christian, by himself, isn’t good. Jesus said that God alone is good. The only “goodness,” or righteousness, that the believer has comes from Jesus Christ. The Bible tells us that, without Christ, man is corrupt and filthy; “there is none that does good, no, not one”.
2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV
For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Philippians 3:9 ESV
and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith—
Psalm 14:3 ESV
They have all turned aside; together they have become corrupt; there is none who does good, not even one.
Have you ever thought, “There must be a key to reaching the lost”? There is—and it’s rusty through lack of use. The Bible does actually call it “the key,” and its purpose is to bring us to Christ, to unlock the Door of the Savior
John 10:9 ESV
I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture.
Much of the church today doesn’t even know it exists. The problem is that it was lost around the turn of the twentieth century. Keys have a way of getting lost.
Jesus used it, Paul used it and James and Stephen.
Romans 3:19,20
Romans 3:20 ESV
For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.
James 2:10 ESV
For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it.
Acts 7:53 ESV
you who received the law as delivered by angels and did not keep it.”
Peter found that it had been used to open the door to release 3,000 imprisoned souls on the Day of Pentecost. Jesus said that the lawyers had “taken away” the key, and had even refused to use it to let people enter into the kingdom of God
Luke 11:52 ESV
Woe to you lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge. You did not enter yourselves, and you hindered those who were entering.”
The Pharisees didn’t take it away; instead, they bent it out of shape so that it wouldn’t do its work
Mark 7:8 ESV
You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.”
Jesus returned it to its true shape, just as the Scriptures prophesied that He would do.
Isaiah 42:21 (ESV)
The Lord was pleased, for his righteousness’ sake,
to magnify his law and make it glorious.
Satan has tried to prejudice the modern church against the key. He has maligned it, misused it, twisted it, and, of course, hidden it—he hates it because of what it does. Perhaps you are wondering what this key is. I will tell you. All I ask is that you set aside your traditions and prejudices and look at what God’s Word says on the subject.
Acts 28:23 ESV
When they had appointed a day for him, they came to him at his lodging in greater numbers. From morning till evening he expounded to them, testifying to the kingdom of God and trying to convince them about Jesus both from the Law of Moses and from the Prophets.
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