Forgiveness & The Evidence Of Grace – Preaching From Matthew 18:21-35

The August 28th, 2022 evening service of the United Reformed Church of Prince Edward Island, Canada. Dr. Jack Whytock preaching. Hymn singing from the Trinity Psalter Hymnal. Scripture reading from the ESV English Standard Version.

Start of service

The Apostles Creed

Scripture Reading

Catechism Lord’s Day 51 Q126

Prayer before the Sermon “Grant us edification, direction, and clarification”.

The Sermon… The Basis of our forgiveness; the Evidence of being forgiven; the Issue of the heart.

Forgiveness —

  1. Forgiveness is all of God’s free sovereign grace. Not a work, a purchase, an attitude.
  2. It is not a merit in ourselves. Psalm 51. Our sins are against God and we cannot make satisfaction for them. Christ must bear our sins. It is by his merit, not ours; we must place our faith in him.
  3. Synonyms – pardon, remit, send away, bury, wash away, clean over…
  4. A distinction between this and water baptism.
  5. The child of God can know this forgiveness.

Evidence of Forgiveness —

  1. Forgiving others is the great mark of being forgiven. We are weak, frail, sinful – need to be pitiful towards others who are as we once were.
  2. Paco the Spanish son story...

The Issue of The Heart —

  1. Ephesians 4, etc. Put on kindness, forgiveness, and gentleness. There’s a lot of garbage in our hearts that must be dealt with. One is converted, receives a new heart, and is born anew of the Holy Spirit. But the gospel of grace does not deal with everything immediately. There’s a lifetime for the Lord to do work, do cleaning, and bring about fundamental change.
  2. Forgiveness must be wholehearted.
  3. Is there a root of bitterness in you?
  4. There is a difference between forgiveness of the heart and reconciliation with a person.
  5. It is better to forgive the bitternesses of the past than to let them destroy your life. The tempter will tell you to hold on to it and will say “you are right and they are wrong” Scripture says let go. Forgive from your heart. Do not cling to the tree of bitterness. Cut it down. Let it go. And your joy and freedom will be restored.
Dr. Whytock at URC PEI Charlottetown, PEI Canada

“If I Do Not Wash You, You Have No Share With Me”: Culture, Conversation, Confusion, and Clarity

A sermon preached by Dr. Jack Whytock at the September 5, 2021 morning service of the United Reformed Church of Prince Edward Island, Canada.

The sermon is based on the NT reading from John 13:1-17 (Jesus washes the disciples’ feet).

The gospel reading begins at the 25:53 mark. The sermon begins at the 32:10 mark.

“Peter, you are about to betray me, yet you are clean now”. Jesus declared Peter clean, yet knew that Peter would betray him and deny him three times. “You are going to come to me all over again. And I will forgive and pardon you and cleanse those particular feet of yours of their particular sins and you will find fellowship with me restored again.”

We are all sinners in need of the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ. How many times can a person be born again? Once. A person is justified, declared righteous by God once.

If you are a Christian you have abiding sin, you still sin after you have been justified in Christ. You participate in the liturgy’s prayer of confession. You acknowledge that your feet are dirty. You say, “I have been a rebel too”. Yet you have been declared justified.

Jesus’ work on the cross will never need to be repeated; it is once for all. And once justified, we do not need to seek again or look for another.

2021 Passover/Palm Sunday sermon: “Cleanse out the old leaven”

“Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed.”

Dr. Jack Whytock preaching at Alberton PEI Baptist Church March 29th, 2021. Scripture reading begins at the 31:37 mark. Exodus 12: The Passover and the Festival of Unleavened Bread. The sermon begins at the 35:05 mark. The accompanying sermon text is I Cor 5: Be the Unleavened Bread.

Four S’s:

Jesus is a Sacrifice – without blemish, spot or sin.

Jesus is a Substitute – God’s justice passed over those who believed and obeyed.

Jesus speaks of a Supper – The Jewish seder meal had:

a) a cup symbolizing the substitutionary blood;

b) bitter herbs which represented the bitterness of bondage in Egypt (and to sin). “It’s bitter to be a slave to sin but to be liberated from it is a different day”. As the old Puritans said, “Unitil you find sin is bitter for you you will never find Jesus to be sweet for you”.

c) the unleavened bread. Leaven has always been a symbol of the spread of sin. You tell one lie, you will need to tell another, and another… it spreads. Haste! Deliver yourself!

Jesus calls us to a life of Separation. Paul picks up on the symbol of the unleavened bread. “Lord, I lay my life down as a sacred offering to serve you”.

The Passover is in Jesus. But to be under his justifying blood is to seek a new way of living, to continue the life of new beginnings each day. This is what you got in for when you began your new life. Let the Lord continue to make you new, free from the leaven of sin, by the power of the holy Spirit, by the ministry of the Word, and prayer. And you will say, “All for Jesus, all for Jesus”. Tell it to the generations. Remember, God is still just, and he will judge. He is a God of love and mercy. This is the sacrifice of the Saviour. May you know the sweetness or life, the sweetness of salvation, the sweetness of Jesus. Amen.

Paul’s Ambition, Our Ambition

A sermon preached by Dr. Jack Whytock on February 7, 2021, at the evening service of worship at the United Reformed Church of PEI. Join the apostle Paul as he shares his plans for missionary trips to Spain and Jerusalem with the church at Rome, as exegeted by Dr. Whytock. The Scripture reading is from Romans 15 and begins here. The sermon begins here.

Kings Come and Kings Go: Are You Keeping Perspective?

A sermon preached by Rev. Dr. Jack Whytock at the United Reformed Church of Prince Edward Island, morning service, February 7, 2021. The text is Daniel 7:1-8, 23- 28.

The sermon begins at the 31:47 mark. The marginalization of God’s people that will take place as they live faithfully in this present world is mentioned here. Calvin’s view of the Antichrist as one who opposes nature and God’s Word — the two universals — follows. The climactic vision of Christ’s glorious return and reign begins here.

  1. Kings come and kings go. Kingdoms rise and kingdoms fall. God is in control. We should take comfort. We should take hope. The saints have passed this way before. The Ancient of Days who sits on the throne rules over them.
  2. The Antichrist is a person, but he is larger than a particular person. Antichrist is anything that is in opposition to Christ and his sovereign mediatorial reign. The term is descriptive of a great spiritual battle between anti-christian forces and the people of God and the Lord.  There are two words in this world — there is the word of God and there is the word that opposes the word of God — sola Scriptura. God’s word will triumph. Be of good cheer. Men will speak against this word in speech, writing, communication. Persecution and opposition come with this — keep it in perspective. “They shall change the times and the laws”: as Calvin suggested, the laws of nature and God’s word — which were viewed as universals — natural instincts, natural desires. This fits what is going on in our generation — opposition to natural law which is in accord with God’s law.
  3. The Ancient of Days, the Son of Man shall reign forever and ever. Who is this man? He is the Son of Man in relation to the Father in trinity. Come in the flesh, incarnate. Exalted in the resurrection and again on the 40th day — exalted and seated at the right hand of the Father, seated in session for his people even now.
  4. Daniel saw him and was overwhelmed. And He shall return in a glorious second exaltation and advent and he shall judge the nations of the earth and his nature and his rule shall be eternal and everlasting and just — all in contrast with the four kings shown in Daniel.

The Son is coming. Keep perspective. Where is your hope? In faith, we are members of his never-ending kingdom. Keep it in perspective as you live in this world and live your life. The spirit of antichrist shall be with us in every generation. Keep it in perspective. Christ shall reign — and he does reign even now.

A Youtube rendition of Onward, Christian Soldiers alluded to in the sermon. The verse referenced by Dr. Whytock:

Crowns and thrones may perish, kingdoms rise and wane,
but the church of Jesus constant will remain;
gates of hell can never ‘gainst that church prevail;
we have Christ’s own promise, and that cannot fail.