False Peace

By Scott Masson/ July 17, 2011

Series  The Sermon on the Mount

Context  Westminster Chapel Toronto

Topic  Discipleship

Scripture  Matthew 7:21-23

It is a false peace when the word of the Lord is not bringing us to a genuine peace with God.

Scripture: Matthew 7:21-23; James 2:18-26

Sermon Notes:

  1. Jesus is laying out the danger of self-delusion and self-deception.
  2. There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end leads to death. Proverbs 14:12
  3. We are justified by faith, but real faith is never without works.
  4. We may, however, falsely trust in our works, while having no relationship with God through Christ.
  5. Only what Jesus has accomplished in our lives will remain, and He alone will judge our faithfulness.
  6. All hypocrisy will be exposed and the works we've done in our lives will be exposed.
  7. Jesus tells us to trust in him, not in our own hearts or our own faith.
  8. To be a Child of God is the work of God the Holy Spirit alone. Ephesians 1:4-6;
  9. God has made us holy in order to live in His presence. See Genesis 2:3; Mark 2:27; Leviticus 19:2.
  10. All God's commands of his people are covered promises: you must be holy and I'm going to make it so.
  11. At the cross Jesus takes those hostile to God and reconciles us to God to make us holy and blameless. 2 Timothy 1:9-10; 1 Peter 1:15
  12. Those who don't trust in their own righteousness are blessed.
  13. The claim that Jesus is Lord (75% of Canadians) is self-deception if we deny His authority over our lives.
  14. To allow counterfeit behavour to pass off as real is to promote a false peace.
  15. It is a false peace when the word of the Lord is not bringing us to a genuine peace with God. Jeremiah 6:14
  16. The people in v22 did the will of God externally: they prophesied, they cast our demons, they did miraculous signs in Jesus name.
  17. They are wielding Jesus' power without being moved by Jesus' cross, i.e., without living under the authority of the cross.
  18. There are three forms of false peace:
  19. Orthodoxy: beliefism is a claim to trust in our faith to save us; rather we're to put our faith in Jesus and what He has done for us at the cross. Correct beliefs are important, but they don't save us.
  20. Emotional enthusiasm: “Lord, Lord!” Just feeling good about it, doesn't necessarily make an experience true or right. There's a difference between a true spiritual fervor and an emotionally expressive personality. We should experience a thrill and delight to be full of joy in hearing the gospel. The response to the beauty of God should be rejoicing. There's a false peace in thinking we can orchestrate a spiritual state by preaching or leading worship. You can manipulate emotions. We can be carried away by our own talents and eloquence, not by the truth and beauty of God.
  21. Good works: Paul warns the church in 1 Corinthians 5 that the church needs to be disciplined in moral living. Paul encourages prophesy, but without love it is nothing. 1 Corinthians 13:2. It's possible to preach truthfully, yet to remain outside the kingdom of God. Some preach out of envy and strife. Philippians 1:15. We are to watch ourselves knowing our tendencies to hypocrisy.
  22. Miracles and mighty works are not necessarily a sign from Jesus. Matthew 7:22; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15
  23. Jesus warns us of the false peace that can so easily entangle us.
  24. This passage is not designed to worry sincere believers about losing their salvation; it's about false forms of peace.
  25. We don't have to earn our salvation; Jesus has paid it all.

Application Questions

  1. How are hypocrisy and self deception sometimes related?
  2. What are God's purposes for the purity/holiness of His people?
  3. List three types of false peace and give examples.
  4. What was wrong with the false peace in Jeremiah's day?
  5. Do good works always indicate a genuine Christian? Explain?
  6. How does the cross factor into doing genuinely good works?

Sermon Notes