Christ Our Moral Teacher – 1

great sermons header

*Pastor’s Note: Written back in 1894, it is amazing to me as I study some of the teachers who have passed on into eternity, just how much they taught on a human nature that has changed very little in over a great period of time. Robert Eyton taught a bit over a century ago and so many others taught even further back then that, and yet some of these teachings are still so very relevant, if not more so, today!

And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. Then He opened His mouth and taught them . . . – Matthew 5:1.

Christ came to teach men how to live—to live in the highest and fullest sense; this is the truth that our age insists upon and demands. He did not come to teach men to get through life by any means necessary and to make what is often called a good death at the very last of life, which should be a contradiction of everything that had gone before it. He came to call men to live every day of their lives as children of the Father; to link their lives on to the unseen spiritual world with all its wealth of motive and stores of grace; to live as “members one of another” in relation to others, counting service as the noblest employment of life; to live, as regards self-improvement, the highest life of which each one was capable; to live as men who have been put in trust with talents, with gifts of heart and reason and will. So having regard to each one’s three-fold relationship, that is, to God, to others, and to self, He came to teach men to live.

Christianity is a concept of life in the widest and fullest sense of the term. Christ was full of truth, and so He taught men to live truly. He came also to give men that inward power which would enable them to rise to this concept of abundant life and to attain to its fulfilment; He came to give grace to enable mankind to live this fulness of life. But this gift was in no way meant to dispense with the necessity of putting forth some effort.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13) was the correlative truth which gave the balance to the conviction, “I can do nothing of myself” (see John 5:30). Again and again there comes by degrees a reaction, and men see that the Divine Hand stretched out does not dispense with putting forth moral effort; they awake to the peril of trying to find a way out of difficulties by always invoking a supernatural interference or spiritual force, which contradicts every known law of the Divine working. Right now, we are living in such a time as that. We are in the constant process of reacting based on two great waves of circumstance, one of emotionalism and the other of ceremonialism; the first of these, emotionalism depreciated and lessened moral effort in the supposed interests of Divine Grace, while the second of these, ceremonialism often appeared to leave men satisfied if they did this ritual or that tradition and by its insistence on a quantitative theory dependent on the AMOUNT of devotional observance, that observance often obscured or superseded the great law of love.

We are now in a state of reaction from both one and/or the other, and may therefore be well occupied by looking at another side of things. Christ came to teach men how to live, to give them a new concept of life, simply a new lifestyle, a new way of living. And the only real Christianity is not a system of observances or a series of emotions but a life—a life linked with the One Life which was manifested in its principles and ideals so that we could see it. “I am the Life,” said Christ, the Life to follow as well as to partake of. We become one with Him, we dwell in Him and He in us that we may learn how to live and as He stated, to live more abundantly (John 10:10).

And to teach us the things necessary for the new life, He goes up into a mountain; the place is in itself the fitting emblem of a teaching which is pitched in a key far above all our ordinary ways of looking at things. From a mountain He fitly gives those laws of character and rules of life, often referred to as the Beatitudes (Matthew 5), and those general concepts of the new Life which often follow after them, and which stand out sublime and enduring for all time.

To Be Continued

gs moral teacher

Adapted and modified excerpt from a sermon by Robert Eyton, Christ as a Moral Teacher, 1894. In the Public Domain.
*Unless otherwise noted, Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

About Roland Ledoux

Pastor of Oasis Bible Ministry, an outreach ministry of teaching, encouragement and intercessory prayer from the Holy Bible, the written Word of God and author of the ministry website, For The Love of God. He lives in Delta, Colorado with his beautiful wife of 50+ years and a beautiful yellow lab whom they affectionately call Bella.
This entry was posted in Great Sermons From The Past and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are always Welcome and Appreciated!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s