What It Means To Be An Experiential Believer

1 Corinthians  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  36:30
0 ratings
A pastor was visiting a home of one of the parishioners. At the house it seemed obvious that someone was at home, but no answer came to his repeated knocks at the door. Therefore, he took out a business card that had printed “Revelation 3:20” on the back of it for just such an occasion, and stuck it in the door. When the offering was processed the following Sunday, he found that his card had been returned.
However, added to it was a cryptic message which read, “Genesis 3:10.” Someone from the counting team brought this to his attention and he reached for his Bible to check out the citation, as he read he couldn’t help but laugh. Why? You may ask. Because Revelation 3:20 begins “Behold, I stand at the door and knock.” Genesis 3:10 reads, “I heard your voice in the garden and I was afraid for I was naked.”

Historical/Cultural Context -

Paul preached the gospel in Corinth in the early 50s AD during his second missionary journey (Acts 18:1–18). When opposition grew fierce there, the Lord Jesus spoke to him in a vision assuring him that he had ‘many people’ in the city (Acts 18:10). With this encouragement, Paul stayed on for eighteen months, ‘teaching them the word of God’ (Acts 18:11). God used Paul’s ministry to bring about the birth and establishment of the church in Corinth.

Biblical Text -

1 Corinthians 15:20–34 NKJV
But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ’s at His coming. Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be destroyed is death. For “He has put all things under His feet.” But when He says “all things are put under Him,it is evident that He who put all things under Him is excepted. Now when all things are made subject to Him, then the Son Himself will also be subject to Him who put all things under Him, that God may be all in all. Otherwise, what will they do who are baptized for the dead, if the dead do not rise at all? Why then are they baptized for the dead? And why do we stand in jeopardy every hour? I affirm, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily. If, in the manner of men, I have fought with beasts at Ephesus, what advantage is it to me? If the dead do not rise, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!” Do not be deceived: “Evil company corrupts good habits.” Awake to righteousness, and do not sin; for some do not have the knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


Life Principle - True Experiential Believers Face Hardships & Will See Jesus In His Victory.

Life Point- Are You Sure You Are An Experiential Believer?

Exegetical -

1 Corinthians 15:20–23 BSB
But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. But each in his own turn: Christ the firstfruits; then at His coming, those who belong to Him.

Homiletical -

The Christian life is not just some ascent of the mind. We can believe things in our minds, but not truly trust the facts.
Illustration of the chair
In my mind I know this chair will hold me up.
However my experience may be different.
Those who have been in church all their lives know the Gospel. But do they have experiential knowledge that God can be trusted and will hold them up?
I have experienced this chair before and by experience I trust this chair to hold me up. How much even more I can experientially know that God will hold me up. That I can trust Him.
This is the Gospel. Through the experience of salvation and the subsequent walking with God in faith, which is in itself an experiential faith, I can trust be experience that God will hold me up.
If it seems like He isn’t then that means I don’t see the Big Picture and He is allowing me to have these things for a purpose. What purpose? I don’t know. But I don’t need to know either.
Isaiah 55:8–9 BSB
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,” declares the LORD. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so My ways are higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.
2 Peter 3:8–9 BSB
Beloved, do not let this one thing escape your notice: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise as some understand slowness, but is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish but everyone to come to repentance.
I say all of that to say this:
If Jesus says we are going to be raised, then I can trust that. Not just intellectually but experientially.
That is why I can say with confidence, “God said it, I believe it, and that’s it.”
So Paul says with certainty that Jesus was raised from the dead. There is no doubt, no room for maybe, but certainty. The Bible was true then and it is true now. It is the inerrant Word of God and shows us the path to salvation and the paths of salvation.
The Bible shows me how to come to Jesus and how to walk with Jesus. He is the second in the trinity and is the God-Man. 100% God and 100% man. I don’t understand it fully, but I trust it because I have experienced God’s goodness in salvation and life.
As peter said:
John 6:67–68 (BSB)
So Jesus asked the Twelve, “Do you want to leave too?”
Simon Peter replied, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words of eternal life.
Paul says Jesus is the first fruits of those who have died. Those who have fallen asleep.
As a man he is the first fruits of the current harvest. The current covenant that was established in His blood. He was raised so we can trust we will be raised too. Why? Because we are also apart of that same harvest.
Luke 22:20 BSB
In the same way, after supper He took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is poured out for you.
1 Corinthians 11:25–26 BSB
In the same way, after supper He took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.
1 Corinthians 15:21–23 BSB
For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. But each in his own turn: Christ the firstfruits; then at His coming, those who belong to Him.
To truly understand this we must understand something called Federal Headship. As it relates to this portion of scripture it is enough to know that Eve fell under Adam’s leadership or headship. So it was Adam who was held accountable for both his and her sin, though they both have consequences for disobedience.
Now since Jesus has taken the Christian out of the headship of Adam and placed them under His leadership and headship we can come to know the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Because Jesus has taken us on and made us new he has promised to make us alive and complete the work of salvation on His return by giving us a new body.
We know this how? By head knowledge? Yes, but not just head knowledge because we know by our experience with God that we can trust Him.

Life Point - Experiential Believers Will See The End & Rebirth Of All Things

Exegetical -

1 Corinthians 15:24–28 BSB
Then the end will come, when He hands over the kingdom to God the Father after He has destroyed all dominion, authority, and power. For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For “God has put everything under His feet.” Now when it says that everything has been put under Him, this clearly does not include the One who put everything under Him. And when all things have been subjected to Him, then the Son Himself will be made subject to Him who put all things under Him, so that God may be all in all.

Homiletical -

“Then the end will come” does not mean immediately, but Paul has had this revealed to him by God. How do we know this is the case?
2 Corinthians 12:1–6 BSB
I must go on boasting. Although there is nothing to gain, I will go on to visions and revelations from the Lord. I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of it I do not know, but God knows. And I know that this man—whether in the body or out of it I do not know, but God knows— was caught up to Paradise. The things he heard were too sacred for words, things that man is not permitted to tell. I will boast about such a man, but I will not boast about myself, except in my weaknesses. Even if I wanted to boast, I would not be a fool, because I would be speaking the truth. But I refrain, so no one will credit me with more than he sees in me or hears from me,
He writes that after all kingdoms, all authorities and powers on this earth are destroyed then he is complete and will destroy death. All men will come and submit and worship him. Why? Because they are those that we call the saved today. All that will remain on the earth for the new heavens and earth that will remain is the Christian in a new body before the Lord always.
At this point there will be no corruptible flesh left. Sin will have run its’ course and death will be destroyed because it has no more power over the saved.
Then the son will hand it all over to God the father. This is where God The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit will rein on the earth. So what will that look like?
Revelation 21:1–8 BSB
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying: “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man, and He will dwell with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them as their God. ‘He will wipe away every tear from their eyes,’ and there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the former things have passed away.” And the One seated on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” Then He said, “Write this down, for these words are faithful and true.” And He told me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give freely from the spring of the water of life. The one who overcomes will inherit all things, and I will be his God, and he will be My son. But to the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and sexually immoral and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their place will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur. This is the second death.”
In verses 9-21 There is he physical description of the city that will be on the new earth.
Revelation 21:22–22:5 BSB
But I saw no temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, because the glory of God illuminates the city, and the Lamb is its lamp. By its light the nations will walk, and into it the kings of the earth will bring their glory. Its gates will never be shut at the end of the day, because there will be no night there. And into the city will be brought the glory and honor of the nations. But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who practices an abomination or a lie, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. Then the angel showed me a river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the main street of the city. On either side of the river stood a tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit and yielding a fresh crop for each month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be within the city, and His servants will worship Him. They will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night in the city, and they will have no need for the light of a lamp or of the sun. For the Lord God will shine on them, and they will reign forever and ever.
This past Wednesday we talked a little more in-depth about the New Jerusalem. I am sorry some of you missed it. In my most humbled opinion I thought it was good. But I’m not biased or anything.

Life Point - Experiential Believers Have No Problem Facing Hard Truths

Exegetical -

1 Corinthians 15:29–34 BSB
If these things are not so, what will those do who are baptized for the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why are people baptized for them? And why do we endanger ourselves every hour? I face death every day, brothers, as surely as I boast about you in Christ Jesus our Lord. If I fought wild beasts in Ephesus for human motives, what did I gain? If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.” Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good character.” Sober up as you ought, and stop sinning; for some of you are ignorant of God. I say this to your shame.

Homiletical -

There was a baptism of the dead being practiced by the Corinthians. In this instance Paul is not condoning this nor is he condemning this practice. This practice has been abandoned because it isn’t logical as true baptism is believer’s baptism. So to baptize via a proxy doesn’t work.
Because baptism is a sign to the world that you follow Christ now. You are proclaiming this openly. To do so invites persecution if not martyrdom for the believer.
A dead person cannot declare this because they’re dead.
So it makes no sense to do so.
However, Paul is pointing out that if they believe that Jesus is not raised, while baptism is a covenant sign of the New Covenant in Jesus’ blood which includes resurrection, then why do they have this ridiculous practice?
Paul points out some his sacrifices to the Lord that he has made.
If there is no resurrection, then why would he:
1) Face death everyday
2) Fight wild animals in Ephesus. What gain would there be to him.
If there is no resurrection then Paul states we should all just do the old saying, “let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.”
Another saying is used after that, “don’t be deceived ‘Bad company corrupts good character.’”
In other words, stay away from false teachers and those who deny the essentials of the Christian faith.
I would never go worship at a Pagan temple, a church of satan, Kingdom Hall, or Mormon Temple.”
Because they don’t worship the one and true living God. They all deny the Gospel. Some outright and some reject an essential of the faith.
Now Paul tells them a hard truth, one in which today I am afraid most churches would throw him out for being so blunt.
So let me be blunt with you too.
1 Corinthians 15:33–34 BSB
Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good character.” Sober up as you ought, and stop sinning; for some of you are ignorant of God. I say this to your shame.
Other translations don’t translate this passage as harsh as it should be. I like the BSB for its’ rendering.
Remember the church at Corinth loved to get drunk during their Fellowship meals. They were good at sinning in multiple areas of life and Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit tells them to stop being drunkards who are ignorant of God.
Then to make sure they really got it and that there is no room for mistake he writes “I say this to your shame.”

Life Principle True Experiential Believers Face Hardships & Will See Jesus In His Victory.

Call to Action – altar call….

Related Media
See more
Related Sermons
See more