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In his first sermon in his series on the opening chapters of the Gospel of John, begun in October 1962, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones made the arresting remark: ‘Do you know what is the matter with us? I will tell you. We, none of us, really believe in the Lord Jesus Christ! The trouble with all of us is that we do not know enough about him. So John says: The thing you need above everything is to be brought to this knowledge of him – who he is, what he has done, and what he has made possible for us.’
The preacher was convinced that Christians are too often unhappy and uncertain – and, as a result, fail to give a true and accurate impression of Christianity to those around them – because they are suffering from ignorance. Yet he insisted strongly that bare knowledge is not enough. What is needed is the life that comes from believing in Christ rightly (John 20:31). ‘We must start with the doctrine, and out of that will come the life, the experience, everything we need.’
This is part of the last great Lloyd-Jones Sunday-morning series at Westminster Chapel. In these 32 powerful sermons, he concentrates on two main areas which feature prominently in John chapter 1: law and grace and their respective roles (from verse 17); and the assurance of salvation (from verses 12-13). The central focus in all the sermons is the life that flows from the Lord Jesus Christ, received by faith, the life that characterizes those who are ‘born of God’ – those who are God’s children by faith in his beloved Son.