“HIM WITH WHOM WE HAVE TO DO”
1. Here in the auditorium, as I speak, are a number of people who know you are unconverted but you are not particularly concerned about your condition. Concerned enough to attend the service, but not concerned enough to actually follow Dr. Hymers’ directions consistently that you might get converted.
2. What’s back of this behavior? Listen to Isaiah 53.2-3:
2 there is no beauty that we should desire him.
3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
3. These two verses explain perfectly why you are unconcerned about your spiritual condition. It is a passive, seemingly benign, which is to say not obviously dangerous, socially acceptable way of despising Jesus, of rejecting Jesus, and of hiding your face from Jesus.
4. Turn in your Bible to Hebrews chapter 4, where we will begin reading at verse 11. When you find that portion of Scripture, please stand:
11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.
12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.
14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession.
15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
5. Are you one of those people who mistakenly thinks that if you ignore something long enough it will go away? Are you hoping it will be that way with the Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ? This passage we have just read has for its subjects the Bible, in verse 12, the Lord Jesus Christ, in verses 13-15, Who is our basis for coming boldly to the throne of grace in prayer, verse 16.
6. My text for this evening is verse 13: “Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.” On the way to my sermon I would like to point out and explain some issues raised by the writer of Hebrews here in verse 13.
7. There are four contrasting relationships suggested by this single verse.
1A. First, THE CREATURE AND THE CREATOR IS IMPLIED
“Neither is there any creature that is not manifest”
1B. What does the use of the word “creature” show us? Correct. For there to be a creature, which is you and me, there must, of necessity, be a Creator.
2B. But Who is the Creator? The context of our passage shows it to be the Lord Jesus Christ, but we all remember Genesis 1.1, which reads, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” So, Who is the Creator, Jesus or God?
1C. Colossians 1.16-17 clearly declares Jesus Christ to be the Creator and Sustainer of all things:
16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:
17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.
2C. Lest you be confused, Colossians 2.9,
9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.
and John 1.1-3,
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
2 The same was in the beginning with God.
3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
show Jesus to be God.
3B. So, Jesus, God’s Son, Who is God come in the flesh and is now seated at the Father’s right hand on high, is that Person of the triune Godhead Who actually created and Who actually sustains all things. This One with Whom we have to do is personally responsible for each breath you take and each beat of your heart. That means you and I are utterly dependent upon Him, Jesus, for the continuance of our physical lives.
4B. And since He created you, you are His possession. He is the Potter and you are the clay. And doesn’t the Potter have a right to do with the clay what He chooses, Romans 9.21 asks?
2A. Second, THE DOER AND THE SEER IS IMPLIED
“all things are naked and opened unto” His eyes.
1B. Does this mean the things you have done are naked and opened to Him? Does this mean those private things you don’t want anyone to see? Does this mean what you look at? Does this mean where you go when you think no one knows or is watching? All things.
2B. Does this mean the things you have said and thought are naked and opened to Him? The dirty jokes? The lewd remarks? The mumbling under your breath as you walk away from your mom or dad? The swearing? The profanity? The blasphemy? The cruel things you’ve said? And even those things you’ve been careful not to say, but have nevertheless thought? All things.
3B. My Friends, all things means all things. Romans 2.16 declares: “In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ.” You do things. You do all sorts of things. Some things you do with your eyes. Some things you do with your hands. Other things you do with your mouth. Finally, there are those things you do with your mind; your thoughts. Understand, for everything you do there is One Who sees, Who sees all of it. His name is Jesus. You are the doer and He is the Seer.
3A. Third, NAKEDNESS ON ONE HAND AND CLOTHED IN GLORY ON THE OTHER HAND
“all things are naked . . . unto” His eyes.
1B. Let’s consider nakedness. You’re naked when you’ve got nothing on, right? You’re naked when you are not clothed. You’re naked when you are completely without concealment.
1C. When Adam and Eve fell into sin God clothed their nakedness with coats of animal skins, Genesis 3.21.
2C. Since man became a sinner God’s desire has been for man to be clothed and to hide his nakedness. And why is this? Because the sinfulness of man and the wickedness of man preys upon the nakedness of others to lust and scheme and think evil thoughts.
3C. So, while it is not proper for people to go naked in society, and while it very wicked for parents to show their nakedness to their children, even fathers to their sons, all things are naked to the Son of God.
4C. With the eyes of omniscience He sees down into the deepest depths of sinful hearts. He is the One Who knows everything about you, Who knows what no one else knows, Who knows about you what even you have not yet discovered or admitted to yourself.
5C. How, then, can someone who is stripped naked before the Lord of glory pretend to be proud and not humble, pretend to be dignified and not abased? He sees you naked.
2B. But contrasted to man’s nakedness is the Lord Jesus Christ’s glory.
1C. In John 1.14 and Second Peter 1.17 the apostle John and the apostle Peter speak of the Lord Jesus Christ’s glory on the mount of Transfiguration. They “beheld his glory” and heard “such a voice to him from the excellent glory.”
2C. John 12.41 declares that even the prophet Isaiah beheld the Lord Jesus Christ’s glory in Isaiah chapter 6, which took place centuries before the Savior’s virgin birth in Bethlehem. Isaiah, “when he saw his glory, and spake of him,” John’s Gospel tells us.
3C. When Jesus comes again it will be in clouds of great glory, and He will sit upon His throne of glory, and the whole earth will be filled with His glory, as too many verses to look at this evening attest to.
4C. But imagine it. You in your humiliated nakedness before the One Who is clothed in majestic glory and regal splendor. Yet you refuse to consider Him in your thoughts. You do not like to retain God in your knowledge, Romans 1.28, and so you put His Son from your thoughts also.
4A. Fourth, THE CRIMINAL AND THE JUDGE IS IMPLIED
Notice a portion of our text again: “all things are . . . opened”
1B. I want you to take special notice of that word “opened.” The word it translates appears in the New Testament only here. Though it was not used frequently enough in those days to get a concrete idea of all it’s implications, the word means “to lay bear, to expose.”
2B. “It has been suggested that what is meant is the bending back of the neck of a sacrificial animal to make it ready for the final stroke, or even the act of a wrestler to overpower his adversary by seizing him around the neck and rendering him limp and powerless.”
3B. But the most compelling evidence is a reference to the execution of a criminal whose neck is exposed in preparation for his death by being beheaded. Thus, the final contrast suggested by our text is one in which the creature is portrayed as the criminal awaiting execution, the implication being that the Lord Jesus Christ is the judge, which He is clearly shown in many passages to be. In Jude verse 15 we see that the second coming of Jesus Christ is, in part, so that He might come to personally execute judgment upon the ungodly.
1. Are you a person who faces up to issues that are important to your well-being? I certainly hope you are, since there are a number of important relationships suggested by this verse that you need to consider.
2. First, the creature and your Creator. Second, the doer (that’s you) and the One Who sees all that you do (that’s the Lord Jesus Christ). Third, you are the one who is naked before Jesus, and He is the one Who is coming again in regal splendor and clothed in glory. And finally, there is the contrast between the criminal awaiting execution and the righteous Judge Who comes again specifically to execute judgment on the ungodly.
3. This may seem like an awful lot for you to think about this evening, but my desire is to lay before you the single thought I want you to focus all your attention on.
4. Many things are implied by our text, and each implication could be developed into a separate sermon. But I want you to confine your thoughts right now to the declaration that’s found at the end of the verse.
5. “Him with whom we have to do.” Notice that this phrase does not refer to the Lord Jesus Christ as One with Whom you necessarily want to do, or One with Whom you will even choose to do, for the want and the choosing are not up to you.
6. My friend, deny reality all you want. Play the ostrich to your heart’s content. But Jesus Christ is the One with Whom you have to do. Engage in all the self-propaganda you can muster to convince yourself otherwise, you must have dealings with the Lord Jesus Christ.
7. This is what I want you to focus all of your attention on when you go home tonight. Jesus is the One with Whom you have to do. No if’s, and’s, or but’s; you have to do with Him. Now, in view of the fact of, the certainty of, your destiny to do with Him, it is needful that I warn you of Him with Whom you have to do.
1A. First, I Warn You, HE REMEMBERS
1B. You cross your dad and he sometimes forgets what you have done. Cross your mother and she may even more frequently forget or just pass over what you’ve done. But the Lord Jesus Christ never forgets. He always remembers what the unsaved do.
2B. And what does He remember, chiefly? He chiefly remembers whether or not you have ever come to Him for forgiveness and cleansing, whether or not you’ve ever trusted Him to save you from your sins.
3B. Matthew 7.22-23: “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”
4B. So you see, Jesus will remember who are His and who are not His, who came to Him and who did not, who believed on Him and who did not, who found Him trustworthy and who felt Him to be unworthy of their trust, who got saved and who only got religious.
2A. Second, I Warn You, HE GETS REVENGE
1B. He suffered and He bled and He died. He endured unspeakable agonies at the hands of sinners and on the cross. He was despised and rejected and had accusations hurled at Him. He was publicly humiliated, and His nakedness was exposed to all the world.
2B. Knowing that Jesus remembers, be sure you recognize that He will remember those indignities, as well. He will remember the insults and the rejections. He will remember the choices you’ve made to play instead of turning to Him for forgiveness, to play your little games instead of seeking Him while He may be found, to enjoy your sins rather than seeking His forgiveness.
3B. Just as surely as Simon Peter could truthfully tell those assembled on the day of Pentecost that they had crucified and slain the Savior, so I assuredly stand before you now and accuse you in like fashion. For it was your sin that hammered the nails into His hands and feet. It was your wickedness that thrust the spear into His side. He will remember that. Throughout the ceaseless ages of eternity, He will remember.
4B. And that will cause Him to avenge Himself, to get revenge. Ever wonder why Paul admonished Christians to never try to get even when people have done them wrong? It’s because Jesus remembers all the wrongs done to Him and to His Own by you who are lost, and He exacts revenge. Oh, yes!
5B. Romans 12.19: “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.” Paul is saying, “Beloved, you don’t need to get revenge against those who do you wrong. Remember, the Lord has already said that He would take out His revenge on them Himself.”
6B. So, sit there as glib and as nonchalantly as you can, but you’ve been warned. Jesus remembers your premarital sex, your pornography, your swearing, your selfishness, your false religion, your refusal to turn to Him for salvation. And He will seek revenge against you for it.
3B. HOW? THAT’S THE LAST PORTION OF THE WARNING. HE POURS WRATH.
1B. My friend, Jesus will be wrathful. He remembers now, but He does not seek revenge now. As well, He does not pour out wrath now. But sooner than you think He will. Oh, yes. There is coming a time when Jesus, Who is not now angry with sinners, Who does not now exact retribution against sinners, someday will.
2B. He will come from heaven in clouds of great glory. His eyes will be as flames of fire. He will go forth conquering and to conquer. Not as the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world will He come, but as the Lion of the tribe of Judah to smite His enemies. Yes, this King of kings and Lord of lords will smite the nations, and will tread the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God, Revelation 19.
3B. Remember this day, August 30, 2002. I warned you. When you stand at the Great White Throne judgment, remember that I warned you. When you are called up from Hell to give an accounting of your sins, I warned you. And throughout the ceaseless ages of eternity in that black and boiling cauldron of torment called the lake of fire, I want you to remember . . . I warned you about the One with Whom you have to do.
1. Do not pretend that you have any choice in the matter. You will have dealings with the Lord Jesus Christ, one way or the other. There’s just no getting around it.
2. Deal with Him in this lifetime and you will find Him gracious and forgiving. But if you refuse to deal with Him, if you deny that you have to do with Him, if you refuse to come to Him for salvation and forgiveness and cleansing in His blood, then you will find Him a wrathful Judge.
Bauer, Danker, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and other Early Christian Literature, (Chicago, Illinois: The University of Chicago Press, 2000), p. 1014.
Fritz Reinecker & Cleon Rogers, Linguistic Key To The Greek New Testament, (Grand Rapids, MI: Regency Reference Library, 1980), p. 676.
John Gill, The John Gill Library, (Paris, AK: The Baptist Standard Bearer, Inc., 2000)