Richard Baxter: Why Self Denial Is Necessary For Salvation
This episode is brought to you by the Christian Standard Bible a Bible translation. You can teach from with confidence and share with your neighbor. Hearing God's Word for the first time learn more at CS BIBLE DOT com. This is true until you're listening to revive thoughts for. He takes away from God's essence or attributes and still thinks he believes in God because he has left him his name and titles does just as bad as those who set up an image and worship that instead of God every episode. We bring you a different voice from history and a sermon that they delivered. Today's sermon was preached by Richard. Baxter we're going back to the sixteen hundreds in England. Joel we talk a lot on this show about people who there's just not enough time to cover their entire life and Richard Baxter is definitely one of these people. I wasn't expecting him to be. I guess I hadn't really heard a lot of who he was and so I just assumed he'd have a couple of bullet points and it would be you know quick and easy to talk about him but he's not and he's actually a very hard to describe guy and what I mean by that is. I don't really know usually you can say Charles. Spurgeon was a passionate preacher Dietrich. Bond hoffer fearless. But I don't really know how what were you could attach to Baxter. He for example he wrote over two hundred books. Devotional 's he wrote a bunch of articles but he never really aspired to be more than just a pastor to people out in the field very very small church in a pretty small town. He was comfortable right there. Yeah he got involved in. Some of the biggest controversies very divisive. Time to be alive but he himself. He believed he was a peacemaker. But I'll let you listen to this episode and decide if you think he's a peacemaker. Yeah like what you said about him. Just wanting to be a pastor like that's that's something that I saw several points in his life. Where like the dude? He's just chill like he doesn't have. He doesn't have a huge agenda. He just wants to minister to the people but it was funny. Like people in you'll see people offer him something he'll go. I know I don't want that and the later. I really regret not doing that. Why didn't you do it? Strangely relate with that so in this sermon. We're going to listen to. He talks about the nine oneself. And I think you can kind of see it play out. Sheriff Shirt Yeah Richard Baxter like I said mid sixteen hundreds he was born in sixteen. Fifteen would die in sixteen ninety one in Oregon in England. He spent most of his life in England. He comes from a pretty poor family not a lot of money. He was pretty poor growing up in. He didn't get a great education until he was able to get into a school run by John. Owen John Owen. Who He's famous Puritan and we actually have an episode on him in the works that we're excited for. But he helped get baxter going. He'll get baxter a great education and got him real interested in things of theology when Richard. Baxter came to the end of his education with John John in school He's looking for places to further his education and John Owen told Baxter that he shouldn't go to Oxford and I'm not entirely sure why kind of get the idea that maybe John didn't think he was quite cut out for Oxford. But due to that advice heat he didn't go to Oxford. He continued to further his education through other means but he always in retrospect looks back at his life and kind of really regrets not going to Oxford. Yeah Joe that's one of those regrets. We mentioned earlier. We I was GonNa do this and then I didn't and now I wish I had kind of a lot of his story in the Sixteen Forty S. The English civil war broke out. And I'm going to just stop giant Astra's Cure Joel and I from America and I think I speak for both Joel myself when I say that if you couldn't tell by accents but I think it would be for both of us when I say don't understand the single English civil war. It's confusing a lot of our speakers. Come from this era around the English lower and we've dived into portions of time but it is still a very confusing for us in the twenty first century in America. I know I've even watched youtube videos. Like we'll explain the English civil one five minutes or less than you watch it and I still don't know what happened so at some point we're going to do some better research so we explain this to you better but the main point being the war broke out. And he Richard Baxter was like I condemn both sides. I don't like either. The two sides fighting which made both sides hate him even worse than being on one side was being against both of them so they basically kicked out of church and told them to set up shop in a different town. He ends up. Having a mini famous ministers. Spend time in the new church that he starts out It was considered a safe place for fugitives. One particularly famous man was John Bunyan and we did a sermon on him. A few episodes back and very famous guy at the time. He would actually see several battles. He would be a chaplain to the soldiers. During that time he was asked by Oliver Cromwell and I do not know much about it but I know he was one of the big dog so that civil war to get position but Richard Baxter rejected. It said I don't want to do that so eventually. He was brought to London to settle the quote fundamentals of religion in quote in London. But I don't know that they ever did to get sick in the middle this. He goes back home to his home church. And that's when he ends up writing one of his most famous books saints. Everlasting THE SAINTS. Everlasting rest and this being one of the most read books in the sixteen hundreds and that's during a time when people are reading a lot of books yet. Richard Baxter is also one of these guys that he got in a lot of debates. GotTa a lot of arguments but arguments all of the time to and tell me if you know somebody like this. You know someone who I would describe Richard Baxter. Someone who's sensitive to their conscious takes takes their conscious seriously and rarely thinks that other people are doing things the way they really should be doing or for the right reasons right and he makes that now so he's he's always kind of calling out people saying. I don't think you're doing this reasons or I don't think this is the way that that should be happening in. It leads to a lot of conversations and debates and I definitely know at least one or two guys in my in my life that totally meet that description. There's there's there's one story about Richard Baxter where he was having a debate with a guy about baptism in the ideas of that day around baptism and Dane gauged in this debate and the debate lasted from nine. Am to five PM and there ended up being three thousand people that came on looking like look really invested in this conversation. These two people were having and so much so that the sheriffs had to come and get involved to settle down the crowds because the crowds were getting so into it. And we're getting so lively that the type of person that Richard Baxter was. He's the type of person whose whose opinions are so interesting to listen to that. It can get three thousand people riled up all of a sudden right and not necessarily you know he's he's not coming at people with anger swinging hammers. This guy that he was having this debate with years down the road they'll kind of collaborate on some pamphlets and stuff like that work together a little bit and kind of endorse each other's work so it's it's kind of neat to see his interaction with the people that he doesn't always agree with a lot of time. Something else and you have to understand about Baxter. The the way he lived his life his style of church leadership and pastoral work would end up being honestly the blueprint for the way churches and pastors would run from that point on he. Kinda put out a lot of the ideas and people would go back. And let's do it like Baxter. Did it and one thing that he felt very strongly about was home visits. He thought this was just an incredibly neglected part of ministry. He said that he felt half an hour of just one on one time with a person or family would do more good for that person's spiritual walk than ten years preaching behind the pulpit would do for them. History was in a rural part of the country completely. They ended up completely. Outgrowing the church to keep renovating or remodeling to make more room for the attendance. When he when he got to that town it was a town of eight hundred families and just a couple. Maybe maybe just a couple of. We're going part time. When he ended up leaving there were six hundred full-time attendees and he had this weird line is kind of a classic Baxter. Almost we're at the end of it. He goes six hundred people. Come but I I would be surprised if even twelve of them were really sincere in their faith and it's just it's such an interesting just outlook on things. He's he's unique and the English civil war. You know we. We've talked about the English of were a little bit in the trail. We know that he again didn't aside with either side And it was kind of this turning point in his ministry where You get known for something one way or another right in after the war he really wanted to get people back together. You saw this devastation. That the war had caused in the disunity. And that's a big deal for him as this this unity being broken over the war so he wanted to bring people back together and he got pretty well known for it in was doing an Ra job at the Church of England asked him to become a bishop but he refused and that then made a lot of people really angry and he ended up getting his preaching license as it wasn't really a license but basically he was told can't preach anymore right if you had a preacher's license imagine that you're reaching license in air quotes. Yeah he just ended up on the on the wrong side of law enforcement. He ended up on the wrong side of of people in power and so he was getting shut down at events longtime in again he he turned on the bishop because he wanted to. Just keep preaching the way he wanted down preaching to the people who wanted to reach the small church and he wanted to kind of keep going where he thought God was using them. I guess you know people say we have bigger plans for you. And when he said No. Yeah people didn't like that and so now he's getting fined for you know miscellaneous stuff. His events are getting shut down by the authorities. There's a few different occasions where his books would be confiscated and he just took all of this kind of ran with it in stride when he preached. He said that he never felt sure if he would be able to preach again and he said he tried to preach every sermon as if it was his last and I love this quote here where he says that he like he was a dying man giving truth to dying man right so if at any moment like he's he's ready to leave this world he's he's just doing what he feels called the do in the time that he has left to help other people that are coming towards the end of their time. They have left right. This episode is brought to you by Liberty healthshare my name is matthew. Belus I'm with liberty healthshare. Liberty healthshare is a five zero one. C Three nonprofit healthcare sharing ministry a long way to say that we're a group of individuals who have gathered together voluntarily over a common set of L. Principles that share medical bills of one another. We do that without the assistance of any third party insurance or program. Healthcare sharing and liberty healthshare is not sure so people here that they say will. What do you do about largest and frankly? That's what we excel at and Christians use this as a way to express themselves in the realm of healthcare. So it's a way to really fulfill the law price to do as we are commended. The vital to share and mayor one another revert to learn more about liberty healthshare liberty healthshare dot org or call eight five five five eight five four two three seven. That's eight five five five eight five four two three seven in the end of his life. He'd sometimes preach But the law would hound him and he can never be in one place preaching for very long so maybe a guest speaker. Whenever somebody can have around for quite a long time I he could never get his own church again but the king at that time would die in a new one came to power and this last one he he let him off the hook basically kinda forgave him pardoned him of pretty much everything that was causing trouble and this this new king was trying to end wars divisions in trying to England past all of this stuff going on and so baxter was one of the people that got laid off now he had at one point sent over in that time he it's been eighteen months in prison over the course of those years he had had a time. And Baxter. There's one kind of problem we have to bring up with Baxter. And that is that. He chose to be a moderate and I think he chose it because he saw how the extreme way of life that he had seen in the other people had led to the English civil war and had all these bad consequences so he wanted to moderate. He wanted to pull back and he kind of sat down the road. The problem is people taking that path that he went down ended up people say basically he the seeds down that would lead to the enlightenment would lead to ecumenical. Ism would lead to all these bad things that would happen later on and much like the Salem witch trials. If you WANNA look at it this way that we talked about Joel and I and our revived thoughts deep dive much like the Salem witch trials kind of cool down the American spirit toward God. You could say that the English civil war kind of cooled off the passions of the people in England and they started to kind of go down a different road leaving that path and Richard. Baxter having lived through that he became one of those people. Who's kind of? Let's take this more? Moderate Road and other people jumped on that road and said well let's go even further and further until they kind of walked away from God in a sense but I think for Baxter. He just had seen the extremists of everything and he was trying to find a more. God centered path. That would bring about more of that Pinot the peaceful fruit of righteousness the fruit of peace and the fruit of being a peacemaker. He was really determined to just bring people together in unity. In a way that would reflect God because he had seen just so much of the disunity in his life. Yeah Yeah I mean and we talk about on the show all the time that we have this ability to have that hindsight twenty twenty right where we look at the effects that this person had in the following decades centuries rate and they don't know any of that at the time they're making decisions based on their environment and Baxter went through a terrible civil war and it's all terrible things and he made decisions on that and you know could did. He realize that his decisions would lead to different movements on the road. Maybe we'll never know what is heart is in what he desired for these things. It's really easy to look back on somebody into judge. Say See if he had just not done that right. We wouldn't end up here but you know we have no idea. He imagined his intentions for God were good. He seemed like he loved the Lord and loved vandalizing that breaching and I just think it's very easy to look back and go see that guy's wrong and I'm sure that one hundred years from now if we're all still here they'll be people looking back and go see this twenty first century Christians in America. Hadn't done this hundred percent this sermon that we're about to listen to from Baxter. He spends it talking about the things that we have to give up when we follow. God right too often. People want to have Christ but with none of the consequences and he talks about not wanting to give things up kind of really comes across as a sign of not being saved right because as hill. Say in the sermon. And make sense right. If you're a Christian that you'd WANNA give yourself up to Christ I will now show you some of the recent that self. Denial is necessary. I will prove it to you that it is no small thing and not the lofty standard of a few of the saints. Know it does his thing that almost have and will be saved. It is the essence of holiness itself. It is as impossible to separate holiness from self-denial as separating living from life. And if you think it strange that salvation should be dependent on such a hard duty and that no man can be a true disciple that does not deny himself even given his life when God requires it then I will show it to you reason one until a man denies himself he denies God and does not believe in Him. He thought love him and take him to be as God and I hope you will grant that no man can be saved. That doesn't believe in God or love him or take some I god he that will deny God and yet think to be saved must think to be saved. In spite of God the first article of our faith and of our baptism all Christian covenant is to believe in God the father and take him for our God and give up of ourselves to be his people but this no man can do without self the Nile. For by all that I have said in the description of it you may see that selfishness is contrary to God and would rob him of all his higher qualities and God would be no God self is the God of wicked men or the world's great idol and that the inordinate love of pleasure prophets and honor in trinity is all but this self love and unity and that in the militias trinity of God enemies. The flesh is a I thin foundation the world second and the devil. The third every man is an adulterer so far as he is selfish. God is not just a name for he that takes away from God's essence or attributes and still thinks he believes in God because he has left him his name and titles does just as bad as those who set up an image and worship that instead of God or that worshiped the sun or moon as gods because they somewhat represent his glory for surely name has as little substance as an image much less. Can you say it has more than the sun now? Selfish ungodly men will rob God and give his honor and desires to themselves but they will try to put off with empty. Titles they call him their God but will not have him for their in their portion andor joy and won't give him the strongest love of their hearts it will not take him as absolute owner. They won't devote themselves and all they have to him and stand with the Willing Mind as his servant they will not take him for their sovereign and be ruled by him and they won't deny themselves for him or seek his honor and interest above their own. They call him their father but deny him his honor they call him their master but do not fear. Him Malachi one six. They don't depend on his hand and don't live by law and for his glory therefore they do not take him for their God and can you expect that God should say those that deny him and what did thrown him. Those are is very enemies reason to yes more than this God will not save those and make themselves our own gods and who have rejected him. But all these on sanctified selfish men make themselves their own gods for an all the ten points before mentioned they take themselves the desires of God one. They do everything for themselves to they. Use all creatures for themselves. Even God himselves is recognized as only for themselves three a love their present life and prosperity better than God for they would be there themselves and live at some selves and not those that are not like them five they would have the creatures to be. There's and use them as a roan and not as gods six they must care for themselves and look out for themselves endear not trust themselves wholly upon God seven they will use things for themselves and their own conditions and never for anyone else eight they would rule them cells and be away from the laws and government of God nine they would be the rulers of all others and have all men do their wills ten and they would be honored and admired by all and half praise at -scribed them and if all this does not set themselves up as gods or idols in the world. I don't know what does certainly got his. So far from having a thought or saving such vile idolaters who stay in this condition that they are the principal objects of his high displeasure and the most deserving marks for his justice to shoot at and he is engaging employing them down and treading them into hell. Why should God stand by and see a company of rebellious centers? Sit Down in his throne or try to observe his sovereignty in divine rules. Would he leave them alone and then advance them to his glory? No he is resolved that he that humbles himself will be exalted and he that exalts himself will be brought low. And what Higher Self Exaltation can there be then to make ourselves as our own gods and therefore who will be brought lower than this reason three? No Man can be a Christian that doesn't take Christ for his Lord and Savior and no man. Without the self-denial can take Christ for his Lord and Savior therefore no man without self. The Nile can be a Christian and be saved. He who makes himself as an cannot follow Christ for Christ as a way to the father and not to Carnell no the business that Christ came into the world to do was to pull down and subdue this selfishness moreover whoever takes Chrysler Saviour must know from what it is that Christ myth save him and that is most importantly for oneself and no man can take Christ for his savior that renounces not self confidence and is not willing to be saved from the idolatry of Self Exaltation. No mankin take Chrisopher's master or teacher that doesn't come into his school. As a little child renouncing the guidance of the CARNAL SOUTH THERE IS NO ANTI CHRIST OR FALSE. Christ that is in the world that opposes Christ more am resists him in all the parts of his power then our karnal selves. It is this that will not stoop to his righteousness or to his guidance. Self is false. Christ our Savior of the world and its faults. God and therefore can be no salvation. Where self is not denied and taken down first reason for he who doesn't believe in the Holy Ghost and won't take him for a sanctify cannot be a true Christian or be Sade but no man without the self-denial beliefs in the holy ghost and takes him for his sanctify. Therefore without this self-denial no man can be true Christian or be saved. The very nature of sanctification consists in turning a man from himself to God it destroys selfishness and devotes his soul to God by Christ so it is beyond doubt that none but the south denying are sanctified but they truly take the holy ghost for their sanctify and truly believe in Him. So far is men are in love with the disease. It is certain they will not see the doctor reason five. No Man is a true Christian and in a state of salvation that Diniz renounces or reject sort of God but all men that don't have self-denial adhere. The word of God do renounce deny it or rejected therefore no man without South Nile is a true Christian or can be saved in the scriptures. We have eternal light. It Sam that make us wise to salvation a man that will be blessed must meditate in them day and night psalm. One three and it's not the. Here's but the doers of them. That are blessed but nothing is more clear and the Voice of Scripture calls out loud on all manton denied themselves and that the scope of it is to tear down South and set up God and Jesus Christ it is a very point in meaning of it for men to end to take down south and lower men in their own eyes and bring them home to God from whom they are in revolt reason six no man can be a Christian or be saved without saving grace but no man without self. Denial has saving grace for. It is nature of every grace to carry man from himself to God by Christ it is the work of Godly. Sorrow humbled proud man and break the heart of Karnal Self. It is the work of fate for a self denying soul to pass out for hope and life to Christ. It is a work of love to carry US quite above ourselves to that infinite goodness which we love. It is the nature of Holy Fair to fill our guilt and insufficiency and to suspect ourselves and dread the fruit of our own ways. Confidence does bottom us before God and hope itself does imply a despairing in ourselves. Thankfulness does pay homage to him that has saved us from ourselves and every grace have self-denial as half. It's very life or soul. So what is certainly no man has anymore grace. Then he has self. Denial reason seven they who reject the ministry and the fruit of all. The works of God are not true. Christians and are not saved for the use of the ministry is to call home centers from themselves to God use of every ordinance of God is to get or keep down Karnal self and exalt the Lord. Confession is nothing but self abasing and he must confess that will help the faithful and just God forgive him for he covers. His sin will not prosper. First John One nine proverbs twenty eight thirteen prayer as a confession of our own emptiness insufficiency and unworthiness and applying from ourselves. Help one another in baptism. We come as condemned prisoners for pardon as it were with ropes about our necks and strip ourselves of the brags of our filthiness by the blood of the land. We may be washed from our blood and our sins may be buried into the depths of the sea. In the Lord's supper renew the same covenant and the same renewed pardon and still fly from ourselves to Christ for life and reunite renounce our karnal cells by solemn cabinet as a people coming home to God so that never was any ordinance of God effectual and saving on the soul of any more so than when it brought them to self-denial reasoning. He'd that doesn't work sincerely and cannot go. Once step into the way of life is no true Christian but this is a case of all that do not have self denial for self is a principal ruling end and he that has either a false principle rule or end cannot be sincere in any of the means much less when he is out of all of these a selfish man is seeking himself in his very religion and is serving himself when he seemed to be serving God and indeed he does not do any service sincerely for God because he will make God is in and so he is an accepted resign. No Man is a true Christian or cannot or can be saved that stays on the depths of his natural misery still in his lap state but all men who stay in their natural softened snus do not change for to solve that they are beholden to and must be saved from it reason ten. No Man can be a true Christian and be saved that is not a member of the holy Church and the communion of saints but she will only find the salt denying there for every true member of the church has a public spirit preferring the church's interest to their own and suffering with fellow members in their suffering and having care of one another first Corinthians twelve but the self seeking unsatisfied. Person is a stranger to this way of life. Reason number eleven he that is led by the greatest enemy of God and his own soul is not a true Christian but so is every man that is not learned to deny himself for self is the greatest enemy of God and us. If you could escape your own hands then you would be out of danger. All the devils and hell cannot destroy you if you would not be your own destroyer. I reason twelve. Lastly it is the plane contradiction to be saved without self denial for as itself. We must be saved from both as our end and means and is our greatest enemy so to stay in self is still to be lost and miserable and therefore you are not safe so the case is as plain as a case can be but no man can be a true Christian or a disciple of Christ without self the Nile and consequently none without it can be the reason number three that he says is for self-denial beat a part of Asian. No Man can be a Christian. That doesn't take Christ for his Lord and Savior and no man without self. Denial can take Christ for his Lord and Savior. That sounds almost like he's just saying the same thing twice but think about it truly. Could you say it? Just imagine at work. My boss told me to do these different things. Did you do now? Now don't get to them. How long are you going to be employed? You're going to be fired on the spot but hearing that just goes what A. What a schmuck right. Well how can you say that? God is my Lord and Savior. I really love my do anything. God tells me to my Har- fully his. I'm I'm dedicated to God will do what he tells you in the Bible like deny yourself pick up your cross no. I don't that I kind of live my own thing but God is great Sunday morning for about five minutes. It's not going to be very realistic. And I think a lot of I duNno I. I am someone who came from a Christian home came from several Christian generations grandparents Christians and I do feel like it's kind of slightly. I don't know when you're raised in a Christian environment. When it's all you know I feel like there is a little bit of danger becoming Numb to donny of Christian life as opposed to someone who's a first generation Christian right now who came to know the Lord and college or something like that where they see the light and darkness. There's that difference to them. I think there's a wisdom and somebody who came later to Christ Sherry. No they really know what life out God is like right but I mean this is something that I feel like I struggle with to like the does my life really reflect this. You Know I. We had a Bible Study Group. That just went through James and James Hammers on that hard to as well as like. If you're faced is real it will result in real things that people notice that better tangible that they're they're works there are things that as a result of your faith being real in that needs to be something we take seriously. I know this isn't from the Seromba you put me in. James Abraham he brings Abraham Andrey Habit. I love it because as as the people for the worse. And Abraham is the father of the faith but he wouldn't have been the father of the head and put Isaac on the altar and Rahab is not the father of the she's the prostitute in. She had a bad job. She betrayed her country. She lied and yet she's considered faithful. Yeah because her heart was in the right place she was doing actions with her heart set on the right reasons and so God could use her and I back coming back to the sermon. You may not get self-denial perfectly. You may not live perfectly. But your heart's in the right place and you're doing something. I think Gaza going to move in your life a lot. More than if you go on the wayside the perfect theology or I'm no wait till everything is just right and then I'm going to move. I think God's not going to bless that second versus much thank you for listening to today's episode of revived facilities said was narrated by Vincent Silva. He is a native from southern new. Mexico now lives with his wife almost thirty seven years and five children in Boise Idaho. He's retired from the New Mexico public schools and also retired from the air force. He enjoys playing guitar and has a passion for God's word and witnesses every chance he gets if you enjoyed this episode of revived thoughts. We hope that you will share it. Tell other people about it and tell them what we're doing here at revived odds. Trying to bring history's greatest sermons back to life. We Joel and I cannot do this. If you were not telling others about the show we have seen the show continued to grow and it really is because of you sharing links on social medias and read it in facebook and all these different places that you guys do and it is because you are telling your friends. Your family members your pastors the people in your life about this show even just texting to them or message it to them or just dropping it as one of your favorite shows. It makes a difference. I promise you that this show is growing and it really thanks to you and we appreciate it and hope that you will continue to do that for us this is troy and Joel and this is revived thoughts.