We live in a very intellectually-confused world.
I’m not talking about the THINGS about which we think, but rather the WAY in which we think.
But I say that not as someone who professes to be superior.
And in addition to that I fear that you do as well.
As I say, we live in a very intellectually-confused world.
For example, western society is semi-literate, BUT we don’t read.
Or we read things which are above our minds and vocabularies, and we can’t grasp their meaning.
We say that we are Republicans or Democrats, and we let the leadership of the party dictate how we are to vote or what we are to think politically.
We are members of one church or another, and we let our priests or our preachers tell us what we are to believe and why we are to believe those things.
Then we watch or listen to various network news sources which scan, edit, manipulate and regurgitate the news like a mother bird feeding her fledglings, not leaving us the privilege of thinking for ourselves about world events.
It seems to me that intellectually there are three kinds of people: rationalists, realists and reactionaries.
But most of us in reality rely only on what we see, smell, taste and touch;
If it doesn’t feel right or feel good, we refuse to believe it or accept it.
We react to things depending on how they come across to us,
And that includes what the Bible says.
Rationalism refuses to leave any room for faith.
In fact I think that it has been more common in earlier centuries than it is today.
More and more people today live for the moment and believe only what they feel.
And Peter’s sermon not only addressed the rationalists in his day, but it answers the pseudo-rationalists of the last days.
He speaks to the ears of the rationalistic Sadducees and the self-deceived Pharisees with logic and faith.
“I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.”
As you hold the Word of God in your hands, which is MORE inspired by the Holy Spirit, the Old Testament or the New Testament?
If Peter, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, said that David was not speaking of himself, then David was not speaking of Himself.
Peter said, that David said, that Christ Jesus said, “Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.”
“Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne.”
“He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.”
He offered some arguments which proved his statement:
For example, David died.
And the time that he reigned over Israel was forty years; seven years reigned he in Hebron, and thirty and three years reigned he in Jerusalem.
And he died in a good old age, full of days, riches, and honour: and Solomon his son reigned in his stead.”
And the days that David reigned over Israel were forty years: seven years reigned he in Hebron, and thirty and three years reigned he in Jerusalem.
Then sat Solomon upon the throne of David his father; and his kingdom was established greatly.”
No prophet, priest or subsequent king ever hinted that the body of David arose from the grave prior to the ministry of the Lord Jesus.
David’s body was, and still is, awaiting for its resurrection.
So Peter said that David was speaking as a prophet of God, when he wrote the words to Psalm 16.
He even set this Psalm to music and taught it to the people of Israel.
They had been singing this song for about a thousand years.
Every word of it was true, even though some people didn’t apply it the way that Peter did.
And most of his prophecies were about the Lord Jesus Christ.
Listen as I read some of David’s psalms.
Psalm 2: “Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?
The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying,
Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.
He that is our God is the God of salvation.”
For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.
They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.”
Psalm 118: “The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner.
Think especially about this last reference: “Of the fruit of thy body will I set upon thy throne.”
Not only did the Lord promise David that he would have a son to succeed him upon the throne,
And that there would be an eternal Heir.
And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.”
But it was clearly prophesied in many places including Daniel 9, which we have looked at several times over the last few months.
Not even the disciples, who learned these prophesies at the foot of the Lord Jesus Himself, fully grasped their meaning until after the Lord’s death.
And this son of David “delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain.”
He was buried in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathaea.
His death was authenticated by the signature of the Centurian who was on duty that day.
And His tomb was sealed with the signet of the Roman governor and guarded by Roman soldiers.
Peter’s argument is this:
Since God made a promise to David, then that promise is guaranteed.
And since David has not experienced the fulfilment of that promise, then it is still outstanding.
But Jesus of Nazareth, who proved Himself by many miracles, and wonders and signs, “which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know.”
“This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.
For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand,
Until I make thy foes thy footstool.
Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
This Jesus is therefore the Christ.
“Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.”
That, as we have done in a very limited way here this morning, if we search the scriptures we will find that they testify of Christ.
That “He and the Father are one.”
That “He is the way, the truth, and the life, and that no man cometh unto the Father but through Him.”
That no matter who we are, whether Sadducee, Pharisee or Gentile, we must be born again.
That “God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son that whosoever believeth on him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
That “except ye repent ye shall eternally perish.”
That Jesus is the bread of life, water of life and the light of the world.
That “no man can come to Christ, except the Father draw him,” but “those who do come to Christ will He raise up in the last day.”
And that “he that believeth on Christ hath everlasting life.”
Our message is essentially the same as Peter’s was two thousand years ago:
“Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”
The alternative to repentance and faith in Christ is the eternal wrath of God.
“The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Peter was telling that vast throng of people, “Ye must be born again,”
And that is my message to you this morning.