The Sermon: Matthew 7:15-21

15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them. 21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.

BE AWARE AND BEWARE OF FALSE PROPHETS!

I.   Jesus says, “They come in sheep’s clothing, but truly are ravenous wolves!”

II.  Jesus says, “You will know them by their fruits!”

III. Jesus says, “Those who do the will of the Father will enter the kingdom of heaven!”

Word of Truth (1 John 4:1 NKJV™)“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits,

whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”

 

Pre-Service Meditation………………………………………… Psalm 48

Pre-Service Prayer: O LORD God, my Creator, Redeemer, and Sanctifier—You reveal Yourself to me through Your Word.  You proclaim Your grace and mercy together with Your plan for my salvation through Your gospel.  You express Your will through Your law.  Give me ears to hear, grant me insight into all of these truths, and fill me with a zeal for Your truths.  Preserve me, O LORD from all that would mislead me.  Amen.

WE PREPARE TO MEET OUR LORD

Hymn:  1 — “Open Now Thy Gates of Beauty”  

WELCOME to worship in the name of our God, who with our good in mind warns us to beware of false prophets!

Invocation:

Pastor:  In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Congregation:

Our Confession of Sins

Pastor:  Beloved in the Lord!  Let us draw near with a true heart and confess our sins unto God, our Father, beseeching Him in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to grant us forgiveness. Our help is in the name of the Lord.

Pastor:  I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord.

P:  Almighty God, our Maker and Redeemer, we poor sinners confess unto You that we are by nature sinful and unclean and that we have sinned against You by thought, word, and deed.  Therefore we flee for refuge to Your infinite mercy, seeking and imploring Your grace for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ.

C:  O most merciful God, who has given Your only-begotten Son to die for us, have mercy upon us and for His sake grant us remission of all our sins; and by Your Holy Spirit increase in us true knowledge of You and of Your will and true obedience to Your Word, to the end that by Your grace we may come to everlasting life; through Jesus Christ, our Lord.  Amen.

P:  Almighty God, our Heavenly Father, has had mercy upon us and has given His only Son to die for us, and for His sake forgives us all our sins.  To all who believe on His name He gives the privilege of being children of God and has promised them His Holy Spirit.  He that believes and is baptized shall be saved.  Grant this, Lord, unto us all.

WE PRAISE OUR LORD

Responsive Reading:  Psalm 119:105-106, 111-112 NKJV™

P: Your word is a lamp to my feet

C: And a light to my path.

P: I have sworn and confirmed

C: That I will keep Your righteous judgments.

P: Your testimonies I have taken as a heritage forever;

C: For they are the rejoicing of my heart.

P: I have inclined my heart to perform Your statutes

C: Forever, to the very end.

P: Glory be to God!

Pastor: “All glory be to God on high!”

Pastor:  The Lord be with you.

Pastor:  Let us pray.

OUR LORD SPEAKS TO US

Epistle Reading:  Galatians 3:1-4

The apostle Paul asks his beloved Galatian Christians how they could be so foolish as to give up the teaching of salvation by grace through faith and substitute for it a salvation earned by keeping the law.  We too must guard against such substitutions of error for divine truth!

O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified? This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? Have you suffered so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain?

Congregational Praise (sung):

Gospel Reading:  Matthew 7:22-29

Congregational Welcome (sung): 

Jesus says that many false teachers will arise in His name…some even performing miracles!  We are always to remember that God’s Word is the solid rock foundation upon which we will want to build our faith and lives, not the shifting sands of human opinions.

22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ 24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock:25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. 26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand:27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.” 28 And so it was, when Jesus had ended these sayings, that the people were astonished at His teaching, 29 for He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

Congregational Response (sung): 

Our Confession of Faith in the Apostolic Creed

C: I believe in God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. The third day He rose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty. From there He will come to judge the living and the dead. 

I believe in the Holy Spirit; the holy Christian Church, the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting.  Amen.

Hymn:  460 — “Behold the Sure Foundation-Stone” 

The Sermon:  Text – Matthew 7:15-21

15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them. 21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.

BE AWARE AND BEWARE OF FALSE PROPHETS!

I.   Jesus says, “They come in sheep’s clothing, but truly are ravenous wolves!”

II.  Jesus says, “You will know them by their fruits!”

III. Jesus says, “Those who do the will of the Father will enter the kingdom of heaven!”

WE OFFER OURSELVES TO OUR LORD

Offertory:

Hymn CW 528:  “Christ Is Our Cornerstone”

Offering of Thankful Hearts

Prayers

OUR LORD BLESSES US!

Benediction:

Closing Hymn:  283 — “God’s Word Is Our Great Heritage”

Silent Prayer And Announcements

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