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by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Saturday Evening, December 16, 2017

“We preach Christ crucified” (I Corinthians 1:23).

Christ crucified was the center of Paul’s great preaching; Christ crucified on the Cross to pay the penalty for man’s sin; Christ crucified on the Cross to shed His Blood so man’s sin could be cleansed. Great Spurgeon said that was the very heart of the Gospel. He was proclaiming the same thing the Apostle Paul preached, for he said, “We preach Christ crucified.” The Apostle’s message was always Christ-centered. When he was first saved we are told, “straightway [right away] he preached Christ” (Acts 9:20). The Apostle was so strongly committed to preaching Christ that he could say, “I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified” (I Corinthians 2:2). He preached on many other subjects, but regardless of what subject he spoke on, “Christ, and him crucified” was always at the heart of his sermons. Whatever his topic, it always ended in an appeal for those who were lost to trust “Christ, and him crucified.”

The day after Christmas our church will send a team of three men to Africa. What will they preach to the hundreds of Africans who hear them? Every sermon they preach will be centered on “Christ, and him crucified.” Dr. David Livingstone went to Africa to promote an end to slavery. That was right and good. But our men will go to Africa for an even greater reason – to promote salvation from sin – through “Christ, and him crucified!” for we preach “Christ crucified.”

Dr. Cagan, and Noah Song, and John Samuel Cagan will have only one message to preach in Africa – Christ, who “died for our sins according to the scriptures” (I Corinthians 15:3); Christ Jesus, who “made peace through the blood of his cross” (Colossians 1:20); Christ Jesus who said, “No man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). Christ Jesus, of whom the Apostle Peter said, “There is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

A new person here tonight may say, “Doesn’t everyone in Africa know that?” No, they do not know that! Many African churches have been poisoned by false teachings from America. The Mormons have gone there to preach another Christ and a gospel which is utterly false! Liberal Protestants have gone there to preach another Christ, and a gospel that is utterly false! Pentecostalists and charismatics have gone there by the thousands in recent years to preach on the Holy Spirit. Many preachers in Africa now preach this false gospel that they get from the American Pentecostals. They preach on healing from the Spirit, not salvation from sin by “Christ, and him crucified.” They preach on demonic deliverance by the Spirit, not salvation from sin by “Christ, and him crucified.” They preach on signs and wonders from the Spirit, not on the miracle of salvation from sin by “Christ, and him crucified.” They preach on prosperity and making more money from the Spirit, not on salvation from sin and from Hell by “Christ, and him crucified.” The Spirit did not bear our sins to the Cross. The Spirit did not pay the penalty for our sin on the Cross. The Spirit did not shed blood to cleanse us from sin on the Cross. Why not? Because the Holy Spirit doesn’t have any Blood to shed – on the Cross or anywhere else! It is Jesus Christ, and Jesus Christ alone who “loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood” (Revelation 1:5). “And without [the] shedding of blood [there is] no remission [of sin]” (Hebrews 9:22).

“Christ... by his own blood....entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us” (Hebrews 9:12).

That is what Noah, John Samuel, and Dr. Cagan will preach in Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda – in the heart of Africa! They will preach the substitutionary death of Christ for sinners on the Cross! They will preach the eternal and everlasting Blood of Christ for cleansing from all sin in Africa! They will preach the heart of the Gospel of Christ to three nations in Africa!

In olden times the missionaries went to preach against indigenous paganism. They were right to do so. But today the main errors in Africa come from American preachers who have pushed their false doctrine there and have confused the churches, stopped revival, and kept the people at large from knowing Christ and His Blood atonement. The American preachers have brought in “Decisionism.” “Raise your hand, and you’ll be saved.” The American preachers have brought in Pentecostal junk, signs and miracles, healings, falling on the floor and screaming, emotional junk that doesn’t save anybody. And the false teaching done in Africa comes directly out of the weak new-evangelical, charismatic, and backslidden churches in the United States of America!

Does that mean John, Noah, and Dr. Cagan think they are better than the African preachers? No, it does not! Our men are only sinners, who themselves have been saved by “Christ, and him crucified.” They are going to Africa to proclaim the same Gospel of Christ that saved them! The Apostle Paul said, “What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin” (Romans 3:9). We are all sinners, saved by the Blood of Jesus and His death in our place on the Cross! saved by “Christ, and him crucified.”

Nor will Noah, John and Dr. Cagan go to Africa to promote any sort of colonialism, neither physical nor spiritual colonialism. They are not going to Africa to Americanize the people. Just the opposite! Our men will go there to tell them not to be like the Americans. Not to be fooled by the American Pentecostalists and charismatics; not to be brought under the yoke of false American religion – but to be saved from the yoke of Western religion by “Christ, and him crucified.”

The Americanized false teachers say, “Raise your hand and be rich! Give me money and be rich!” What a lie! Some of the richest “prosperity” preachers in the world are in Africa. They learned from American preachers to get money from poor people. The people don’t have enough to eat. Their children are starving. But they are told to give their money to false preachers who drive expensive cars, own their own airplanes, and wear expensive gold jewelry – from the money they take from the starving poor! I want our three preachers to blast these false teachers every time they speak! And then point the people to “Jesus Christ, and him crucified” – for it is only the Bleeding Christ who can save them from sin and Hell – and give them a better life!

Someone may say, “But there are only three of them going to preach in Africa. How much good can only three of them do there?” More than if they don’t go! John Cagan led several “untouchable” people to Christ in India earlier this year. Dr. Cagan had one poor man grab his feet. Dr. Cagan later went where the man lived and carefully led this poor man to Jesus! Dr. Cagan was jubilant, jumping up and down and praising God! Dr. Cagan said, “That man trusted Christ. Thank God he did. He died a month later. He is now with Jesus.” And then Dr. Cagan said, “I’m so glad I went to India.” Dr. Cagan told me he would have gone to India just to save that one man! Thank God for men like Dr. Cagan, John Samuel and Noah Song! They would go to Africa just to save one person.

But wait! The sermons these men preach in Africa will be videotaped by us. Then they will be shown on our website to the whole world! Thousands and thousands of people throughout the world will hear their sermons on our website. There is no telling how much good their preaching will do globally – throughout the world in English. And we will select key passages from their sermons and have them translated into 35 more languages. A million people or more will read the sermons in their own language. People will be drawn to watch hard-hitting, Christ-centered sermons preached by these zealous young men.

And one more thing. Dr. Cagan is actually risking his life to go to Africa. Some of you know that he has had a serious medical problem. It was possible that his medical problem would stop all three of them from going to preach in those three African countries. But only a few days ago his doctor cautiously said Dr. Cagan could go. I wouldn’t send the two boys there without him. Dr. Cagan’s healing was to me a sign to let them go. I am convinced that God Himself wants them to go to those three African nations!

But there is one more problem. They were originally scheduled to go to one African country. We already raised the money to go to one country. But a short time ago God Himself opened the door for them to go to three countries instead of only one. But that will cost an additional fifteen thousand dollars. Shall they go to the three countries of Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda? I will leave that decision to you dear people. You have already done so much. But some of you will be getting bonus checks for Christmas or for the end of the year. Others among you have already been blessed financially by God. I am not asking this for myself. I am not asking this even for our church. I am asking this for the people of Africa and for the preachers they will influence there – and later throughout the world on our website. I am asking you to give a Christmas present to the poor people of Africa. It is a present that will do them eternal good.

I know many of you planned to give me a Christmas bonus. I thank you in advance for your love to this old preacher. But if you are a little bit pinched for money this Christmas, why not give some of what you promised to give me to the poor people of Africa? I pray that you will.

I’m going to ask for pledges right now. We are so privileged to have John Samuel preach for us every Sunday. Send him to Africa! We are so privileged to have a man like Dr. Cagan, with two Ph.D.s, leading our church. Send him to Africa! We are so glad to have this fine, strong Chinese man, Noah Song, working alongside John – and preparing to go into the ministry himself. What an encouragement it would be to Noah if you should see fit to send him as a preacher, with Dr. Cagan and John Samuel, to the poor, downtrodden people of Africa! I know some of you gave generously the first time I asked. But I wonder if you might be led to double what you pledged earlier. This is a very worthy cause. This would be a wonderful Christmas gift to Jesus!

Please think about what you could give. And please give the largest amount possible without hurting yourself or your family. I will ask you to pledge the largest amount possible. This is for the extra plane fare to the two additional countries. The three preachers will not receive any of this money for themselves.

Now turn to hymn number 5, “O Come, All Ye Faithful.”

O come, all ye faithful, Joyful and triumphant,
O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem!
Come and behold Him, Born the King of angels;
O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.

Sing, choirs of angels, Sing in exultation!
O sing, all ye bright hosts of heaven above!
Glory to God, All glory in the highest;
O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.

Yea, Lord, we greet Thee, Born this happy morning,
Jesus, to Thee be all glory given;
Word of the Father, Now in flesh appearing,
O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.

Adeste fideles, Laetri triumphantes,
Venite, venite en Bethlehem;
Natum videte, Regem angelorum,
Venite adoremus, Venite adoremus,
Venite adoremus Dominum.
   (“O Come, All Ye Faithful,” written in Latin by John F. Wade, 1710-1786;
      translated by Frederick Oakeley, 1802-1880).

You may be seated.

I need pledges to send John Samuel Cagan to preach in three nations of Africa. Who will pledge $8,000? Could anyone else pledge $7,000? Who could pledge $6,000? Who could pledge $5,000? Anyone else for $4,000? Anyone for $3,000? Thank you all! If there is any money left it could be used to help publish my life story, “Against All Fears.” Could anyone give $2,000? How about $1,500? Or even $1,000?

Thank you all! You are the most generous people I know. God bless you all! Please stand and sing hymn number 16, “Good Christian Men, Rejoice.”

Good Christian men, rejoice With heart and soul and voice
Give ye heed to what we say: Jesus Christ is born today;
Ox and ass before Him bow And He is in the manger now,
Christ is born today, Christ is born today!

Good Christian men, rejoice With heart and soul and voice
Now ye hear of endless bliss: Jesus Christ was born for this;
He has opened Heaven’s door, and man is blest forevermore;
Christ was born for this, Christ was born for this.

Good Christian men, rejoice With heart and soul and voice
Now ye need not fear the grave, Jesus Christ was born to save,
Calls you one and calls you all To gain His everlasting hall;
Christ was born to save, Christ was born to save.
   (“Good Christian Men, Rejoice,” by Heinrich Suso, 1295-1366;
      translated by John M. Neale, 1818-1866).

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Solo Sung by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith Before the Sermon:
      “From Greenland’s Icy Mountains” (by Reginald Heber, 1783-1826).