OceanSide church of Christ
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WHAT IT MEANS TO BE LOST
Victor M. Eskew
A. The term “lost” is not used that frequently in the New Testament.
In Matthew 10:6 and Matthew 15:24, Jesus referred to “the
lost sheep of the house of
2. Luke 19:10 records Jesus’ mission.
For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.
3. In Luke 15:24 and 32, the prodigal son was said to have been lost while he was away from his home in the far country.
4. II Corinthians 4:3.
But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost.
B. The definition of the word “lost” is very interesting.
1. Strong: To destroy fully.
a. To destroy, destroy utterly, kill.
b. To perish.
c. Loss of well-being hereafter.
d. Spiritual alienation and destitution from God.
3. Thayer: To incur the loss of eternal life, to be delivered up to eternal misery.
C. These definitions help us to understand in a very small way what it means to be lost. Let’s attempt to understand this more fully in the remainder of this lesson, “What Is Means to Be Lost.”
I. THE LOST ARE SEPARATED FROM GOD.
A. The lost are in sin. Sin is what separates one from God (Isa. 59:1-2).
Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear, but your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
B. Sin, according to I John 3:4, is the transgression of God’s law. II John 9 teaches that those who transgress do not have God.
Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God.
C. Two Old Testament examples.
1. Adam and Eve (Gen. 3:23-24).
Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence
he was taken. So he drove out the
man; and he placed at the east of the
Saul, the king of
And Samuel said
unto Saul, I will not return with thee:
for thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord hath rejected
thee from being king over
II. THE LOST ARE ENEMIES OF GOD.
A. James 4:4.
Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever will a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
The word “enemy” comes from
a root word meaning “to hate.” The
lost do not love God; they hate Him.
In their hatred, the oppose Him.
They stand against Him as adversaries (i.e., Osama bin Laden is the enemy
III. THE LOST ARE ALLIES OF SATAN.
A. In the New Testament, when individuals opposed the works of God, they were referred to as children of Satan, or, as Satan himself.
1. Peter (Matt. 16:23).
But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offense unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of man.
2. The Jews (John 8:44).
Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
3. Acts 13:8-10.
But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith. Then Saul, (who also is called Paul), filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him, and said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord?
B. These words are not applied much to the lost in our day. To refer to the lost as “children of the devil” is not socially acceptable. The Bible, however, is not concerned with man’s idea of correctness. It paints the picture of the lost vividly. They are children of the evil one himself.
IV. THE LOST ARE DEAD.
A. This is another concept that is sometimes difficult to grasp. As long as one is physically alive, death is not contemplated. The reality, however, is that one can be dead while he is living.
B. Several verses indicate this.
1. The prodigal son (Luke 15:24).
For this my son was dead, but is alive again.
2. The Ephesians (Eph. 2:1).
And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins.
3. Young widows (I Tim. 5:6).
But she that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth.
C. It is interesting that no one who is living physically desires to be dead. Yet, many will be content to be dead spiritually while they are alive. The sad thing is that this state is more grotesque than one being physically dead. It involves a decay and deterioration of the inner man.
V. THE LOST HAVE NO HOPE.
A. Paul describes the condition of the Gentiles when they were lost in Ephesians 2:13.
That at that
time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the
B. Hope involves those things that are not seen (Rom. 8:24-25).
For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.
1. The second coming of Jesus Christ.
2. The resurrection of the dead.
3. The reunion that we will have with the faithful of ages gone by.
4. A home in heaven where a mansion awaits us.
5. Rest from our labors and wonderful fellowship with the Godhead.
C. The lost do not possess these hopes.
VI. THE LOST FACE A FEARFUL FUTURE.
A. The lost are not well-pleasing to God. Their future beyond this life is bleak.
B. It consists of torments in hell throughout eternity.
1. Outer darkness, weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matt. 25:30).
And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
2. Torment in flames (Luke 16:24-25).
And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
3. Separation from God in the hereafter (II Thess. 1:9).
Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.
A. There are some in this audience who are lost today. Some know it. Some do not. Some have deceived themselves into thinking they are saved.
B. Being lost is a horrible condition. It is difficult to describe (Ex., little girl lost at a fair).
C. This condition can be changed very quickly by yielding obedience to the gospel.
1. We can be made nigh unto God.
2. We can become children of God.
3. We can be reconciled to God.
4. We can be given hope.
5. We can be made alive.
6. We can have future joy.