Sermons and studies
Of the pastor’s study
Dr. gino f. cascieri
The Pastor’s Study began in August 1999 by Pastor Gino Cascieri over the world wide web on WGCR, Pisgah Forest, North Carolina. The Pastor’s Study is aired over the world wide web (www.wgcr.net) each Sunday afternoon at 4 PM ET.
This book is a collection of Bro. Gino’s sermons and studies which have either been heard on the Pastor’s Study Broadcast or preached during Bro. Gino’s 12 plus years in the ministry.
This book is dedicated to the preachers of small congregations. To the men of God who have been faithful to minister to the handful of people “over which the Holy Ghost hath made them overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” and who often worked a full-time secular job at the same time.
There is no copy right on the material in this book. I have been given freely the material by God and I give it freely to you. I just ask that you use this material for the honor and glory of God and that the Lord Jesus Christ receives all the credit.
I charge each one of you as the Apostle Paul charged Timothy, “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.”
I pray that the Lord richly bless you as you serve Him.
Yours In Christ,
Bro. Gino Cascieri
P.O. Box 435
Wilmington, MA 01887
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title Text Page
Is Your Ship Ready To Sail? 2 Tim. 4:2-8 1-4
The Testimonies of God Gen. 18:17-19 5-8
This Present World 2 Tim. 4:10 9-11
Things We Need To Consider Luke 12:22-31 12-14
Come-In-Come-Out-Come-Up Rev. 3:20-22 15-16
Have Ye Not Read? Mt. 12:1-8 17-19
How To Kill Yourself Phil. 3:7-11 20-22
The Three Suppers In The Book of Revelation Rev. 19:17-21 23-26
A Holy Addiction 1 Cor. 16:15 27-30
How Tough Is Your Faith? 2 Cor. 5:7 & 1:24 31-33
Pleasing God 1 Thess. 4:1 34-35
Things Paul Was Thankful For 1 Thess. 5:18 36-36
A Chaste Virgin 2 Cor. 11:1-4 37-39
Are You A Fire Proof Christian? 1 Cor. 3:10-15 40-42
Barabbas, The Prisoner Set Free Mt. 27:15-26 43-47
Do What You Can Mk. 14:1-9 48-52
What Shall We Have Therefore? Mt. 19:16-30 53-54
Things In The Past We Need To Forget Phil. 3:13-14 55-59
Things You Can Loose Mk. 8:36-37 60-63
Seven Ways To Shorten Your Life Prov. 10:27 64-65
Deceitful Kisses Prov. 27:6 66-69
Things to Glory In Jer. 9:23-24 70-74
The Traditions of Men Mk. 7:1-13 75-80
Things Which Cause Us To Be Prideful Isa. 14:11-15 81-85
Things Christians Shouldn’t Be Remembered For Prov. 22:1 86-87
“Is Your Ship Ready To Sail”
Text: 2 Timothy 4:2-8
a Notice with me what the Apostle Paul says in v. 6.
· Paul makes this statement at the end of his life.
· Just before he was to be beheaded for the cause of Christ.
· The word “departure” makes one think of a ship ready to set sail.
· Paul was saying that the end of his life was near.
· However, his ship was ready to set sail.
· He was ready to depart this life and go to the next.
· Because Paul knew that he had some eternal cargo on board to take home to heaven.
· Just look at what Paul had to say about what was waiting for him when he got to the shores of heaven in v. 8.
· Let take a look of some of the cargo that Paul had on board to take home to heaven.
a I. Paul’s Cargo
· Suffering –
o The word of God says in 2 Tim, 2:12, “If we suffer, we shall also reign with him”
o Paul certainly suffered for Christ.
§ See 2 Cor. 11:21-30
§ See 2 Cor. 4:8-11.
o Paul said in Phil. 3:10, “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;”
· Souls –
o The Apostle Paul was a soul winner.
o The Bible says, “he that winneth souls is wise”
o Paul would be taking a lot of souls that he had won to the Lord to heaven.
o Notice with me what he called those he had won to the Lord in Thessalonica.
§ See 1 Thess. 2:19-20.
§ V. 19 – “our hope, or crown of rejoicing”
§ V. 20 – “our glory and joy”
o The Bible witnesses to the fact that the Apostle Paul established many New Testament churches in most of the known world at the time.
o This is evidenced by the Book of Acts and the many epistles or letters Paul wrote to encourage and exhort the churches that he had established.
· Self- Control
o Paul lived a life of self control.
o Notice the statement that he made in 1 Cor. 9:25-27.
o That Paul lived a life of self control is further evidence by what he had to say:
§ 1 Cor. 6:12, “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.”
§ 1 Cor. 10:23, “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.”
o See Acts 20:17-27
§ v. 19 – “Serving the Lord”
§ v. 20 – “kept nothing back that was profitable”
§ v. 20 – “shewed and taught” the word of God
§ v. 21 – “testifying” Paul continual testified how to be saved.
§ vs. 22 & 23 – tells us that Paul risked life for the cause of Christ.
§ v. 24 – “none of these things move me”
§ v. 24 – “neither count I my life dear unto myself”
§ Paul is saying that he did not let anything stop him even if it meant risking his own life to “testify the gospel of the grace of God.”
§ v. 26 – Paul’s conscience is clear.
§ He did not have the blood of anyone on his hands.
§ He took every opportunity given him to tell people how to be saved by the grace of God.
§ v. 27 – Paul told it like it was.
§ He held nothing back in his preaching.
§ He preach all of the Bible not just the stuff people liked to hear.
· Spend & Be Spent
o Paul was a spend and be spent Christian.
o See 2 Cor. 12:15
o “And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved.”
o Notice Paul says “I will very gladly spend”
§ Paul practiced what he preached.
§ He was a cheerful giver.
o Did you know that the Apostle Paul never went full time.
§ He often had to work to support himself and not be a burden to some of the churches.
§ Especially to the cheap skate Christians that made up the church of Corinthians.
§ He was a tent maker by trade.
o The Apostle Paul gave of us own material possessions and finances to further the gospel of Jesus Christ.
§ That’s the Spend
o Besides that he gave of himself physically and emotionally to the point of death for the cause of Christ.
§ That’s the Spent
o Paul knew very well what it was like to be used and abused by other Christians.
o Despite this he still said, “And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved.”
§ What a statement!
§ The more he gave of himself the less he was loved.
· Beside all this, the Apostle Paul wrote most of the New Testament.
· Yes, my friend Paul was ready to depart.
· His ship was ready to sail.
a II. How About You?
· Is your ship ready to set sail?
· Do you have any eternal cargo on board to take to heaven’s shores?
· You may say, “Oh, I have plenty of time before it is my time to depart.”
· My dear friend we are not promise tomorrow.
· None of us know when we will breath our last breath.
· David said, “there is but a step between me and death.” 1 Sam. 20:3.
· The Word of God tells us in Proverbs 27:1, “Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.”
· What cargo do you have on board
o Have you laid up any treasure in heaven?
§ What have you done with the money God gave you?
§ Was any of it spent on supporting a good local bible believing church?
§ Was any of it spent on supporting missions?
o Have you led anyone to the Lord?
o When is the last time you handed out a gospel tract?
o When is the last time you gave some one your testimony?
§ How Jesus saved you and what your life was before Jesus and the change that has taken place since.
o When is the last time you stood for the things of God?
o When the last time you had some slam a door in your face for trying to witness to them about Christ?
o Do people know where you stand on –
§ Prayer in School & the ten commandments
§ Abortion on demand
§ Adultery and fornication
§ Support of Israel
o Are you a spend and be spent Christian?
o Do you give gladly of your material resources and of yourself physically and emotionally to further the gospel of Christ?
o Would there be enough evidence in a court of law to convict you being a Christian.
· My friend if you have not started already then today is time to start putting some eternal cargo on board your ship.
· So when your time comes “Your Ship Will Be Ready To Sail!”
"The Testimonies of God"
Text: Genesis 18:17-19
Ø I believe to have one's name mentioned in the Bible is extraordinary.
Ø However, to have the God of the Bible actually provide a testimony in a person's behalf is hardly imaginable.
Ø When any of us stand in the presence of God
o We realize as Isaiah did we are -"people of unclean lips"
o We realize as the Apostle Paul did - "O wretched man that I am!"
o We realize as the Apostle Peter did - "I am a sinful man"
Ø The Bible declares -
o "As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one"
o "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God"
Ø Despite this God testifies in His Word about some of His Saints.
Ø We want to look at some of "The Testimonies of God."
I. Abraham - Genesis 18:19
Ø Notice God's testimony about Abraham
o God says, "For I know him"
o God had no doubt about the statement that He was about to make about Abraham.
Ø "that he will command his children and his household after him"
o God said that Abraham had his family and household in order.
o He rules them well.
o They were in complete submission to him because Abraham was in complete submission to God.
Ø "they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment"
o Abraham was obedient to God and set the example for his family.
o He spent time in instructing his family on the things of the Lord.
o See Deut. 6:4-9.
o He made sure that his family had a time of devotion each.
o He was not a hypocrite.
o He practiced what he preached.
o His walk matched his talk.
o Therefore, Abraham's family was obedient to God.
o As Abraham was just and fair in his business dealings and so would his family.
Ø In fact notice what the Word of God says about Abraham's relationship with God.
o See James 2:23
o Can you imagine being called "The Friend of God"
o I believe the reason that Abraham was called The Friend of God is because he was obedient to God.
Ø We see his life of obedience begin when God told him in Genesis 12:1 - "Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:"
Ø We see Abraham’s obedience in Genesis 12:4 – “So Abram departed, as the LORD had spoken unto him;”
Ø Abraham was not perfect.
o He was a sinner just like you and me.
o However, overall his life reflected a life that was obedient to God.
Ø Abraham had the testimony of OBEDIENCE to God
II. Job - Job 1:8
Ø Notice God's testimony about Job -
Ø "there is none like him in the earth"
o Job was in a class all by himself.
Ø "a perfect and an upright man"
o God did not say Job was sinless.
o Job was a perfect man
§ A man who was a mature saint.
§ A man who was consistently right with God.
§ A man who confessed his sins to God on a regular basis.
o Job was an upright man.
§ A man who could be trusted in his business dealings.
§ A man who was honest and would never cheat anyone.
§ A man was known as being fair in his business dealings.
Ø "one that feareth God"
o Job had the testimony that he feared God.
o That is why he was a perfect and upright man.
Ø The Word of God has a lot to say about "the fear of the Lord"
o "the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom"
o "the fear of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom"
o "the fear of the Lord prolongeth days"
o "the fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death"
Ø "escheweth evil"
o Job had the testimony that he avoided evil.
o The Word of God tells us "to depart from evil is understanding"
Ø See James 5:10-11.
o We see that Job had a testimony of being patient when it came to suffering.
o The Word of God tells us in Romans 5:3 - "...knowing that tribulation worketh patience"
o Job certainly had his share and more of tribulation but through it all he was patient and trusted in God.
Ø Job had the testimony that he FEARED GOD.
o As a result he was an upright man and avoided evil.
III. David - Acts 13:22
Ø Notice God's testimony about David
Ø "a man after mine own heart"
o A believe the key word is "heart"
Ø See Isaiah 66:2
o Notice the kind of man God takes notice of -
§ A man that has a poor and contrite spirit
§ A man that trembles at God's Word.
§ David was such man.
Ø See Psalm 51:17
o Notice the kind of sacrifices that God will not despise
§ "broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart"
Ø You see the reason David was a man after God's own heart was because he saw sin as God saw sin.
o Something wicked and vile.
o Despite his sins of committing adultery with Bathsheba and having her husband Uriah murder.
o David was still a man after God's own heart because he acknowledged his sin and took full responsibility for it
o He confessed his sin to God and was broken hearted because of his sin.
o He asked God for his forgiveness and mercy
o This evident from Psalm 51 which he wrote.
o David had godly sorrow which worketh repentance to salvation.
§ David was sorrow for offending God.
§ Not for getting caught.
§ Being sorrow for getting caught is worldly sorrow which worketh death.
Ø Notice also in Acts 13:22 what God has to say about David.
o "which shall fulfil all my will"
o God knew with out a doubt that David was totally submitted to will of God for his life.
o God knew whatever He told David to do that he would do it.
Ø David had the testimony of being a MAN AFTER GOD'S OWN HEART.
o A heart that would weep and hurt over sin that he had committed against God.
o A man surrendered to the will of God.
IV. Mary - Luke 1:30
Ø Notice God's testimony about Mary.
Ø "for thou hast found favour with God"
o Mary found kindness with God.
o Mary found God's support.
o Why you might ask?
o Of all the virgins in Israel why did Mary find favour with God?
Ø Let's look at some of the statements that Mary made.
o See Luke 1:38 - "And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word"
o Mary had a humble spirit.
o She called herself a handmaid of the Lord.
o A position of servitude and submission.
Ø Most women if they were told that they were going to bring the Saviour of mankind into the world would have been pretty puffed up - Amen!
Ø If they believed the angel Gabriel to begin with.
Ø Mary was submitted to whatever the Lord had for her to do.
Ø Notice something else about Mary.
o She recognized her lost condition.
o See Luke 1:46-47
§ Her soul magnified the Lord not herself.
§ She her spirit rejoiced in God her Saviour.
Ø Mary had the testimony of being HUMBLE.
Ø Mary had the testimony that she would serve the Lord in any way He saw fit.
Ø I believe that each one of these testimonies of God should reflect the life of the believer.
Ø I believe each one of us should have the Testimony:
o Of being obedient to God as Abraham was.
o Of fearing God as Job did to keep us upright and to avoid evil.
o Of having a broken and contrite heart over our sin as David did.
o Of having a heart of humility, totally surrendered to will of God as Mary did.
Ø How about you my dear friend - What is God's Testimony regarding you?
“This Present World”
ð Text: 2 Timothy 4:10
o We want to look at “This Present World” that Demas forsook the Christian friendship and fellowship of the Apostle Paul for.
o Maybe you know someone who has done the same thing as Demas
o Left off going to church, serving God, fellowshipping with God’s people for “This Present World.”
o When I speak of the world, I am speaking about the world system.
ð I. ITS LEADER
o A. Politically
· John 12:31, “Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.”
· John 14:30, “Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me.”
· John 16:11, “Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.”
o Political Leader is Satan.
o B. Religious
· 2 Cor. 4:4, “In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.”
o Religious Leader – Satan
o Can you think of both a political and religious leader today?
· How about the Pope?
· Who do you think is behind that system?
· In many countries today the pope is pulling the strings both politically and religiously.
ð II. ITS LABEL
o Notice with me how the Apostle Paul described “this present world” in Galatians 1:4, “Who (Christ) gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:”
· Paul calls this world we live in “evil”.
o And that is why Paul commands us in Romans 12:2, “…be not conformed to this world:”
o And that is why the Apostle John commands us in 1 John 2:15, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”
o And that is why the Apostle Peter warns us about “…the corruption that is in this world” in 2 Peter 1:4
· Corruption: Depravity; wickedness; perversion or deterioration of moral principles; loss of purity or integrity.
o Peter also warns us about “…the pollution of the world” in 2 Peter 2:20
· Pollution: Defilement; uncleanness; impurity; the state of being polluted.
o Galatians 1:4, tells us Christ “gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world,”
· In other words, that is why Christ gave himself for our sins to deliver us from a world that is evil and full of corruption and pollution.
ð III. ITS LIVING
o A. WHAT IT HAS
· According to 1 John 2:16
§ “the lust of the flesh”
§ “the lust of the eyes”
§ “the pride of life”
· 1 John 5:19, tells us “the whole world lieth in wickedness.”
§ The world’s bed is wickedness!!!
· The world is “full of cares” according to Mt. 13:22, Mark 4:19.
o B. WHO IT HATES
· The Lord Jesus Christ and his people
§ See John 15:18-19
o C. WHERE IT IS GOING
· See 2 Peter 3:10-13,
§ V. 10, “the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.”
· This event takes place after the Millennium
· 1 John 2:17, “And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.”
ð IV. ITS LEADING
o In other words its teaching
o Ephesians 2:2, tells us this world has a “course” which we all followed before we got saved.
· “Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:”
§ “prince of the power of the air” is another name for the leader of this world, Satan.
· Course: Manner of proceeding; way of life or conduct; deportment; series of actions.
§ The course of this world is one of open rebellion against God.
§ It breeds in its children a spirit of disobedience against the authority of God and His Book.
o Colossians 2:8, tells us this world also has “rudiments”
· Rudiments: Basic fundamental principles which something is established and developed.
o The rudiments of this world are:
· 1) Everybody else does it
· 2) We always have done it
· 3) A little bit doesn’t hurt
· 4) My conscience doesn’t convict me.
· 5) We know when to quit.
· 6) You gotta make a living
· 7) It all depends on how you look at it.
o These are the alibis for every sin that has ever been committed on earth.
· This is the philosophy of the world and it is the tradition of mankind.
· Every sin you ever committed, you committed on one of those grounds, or more than one of them.
o The rudiments of Biblical Christianity
· 1) It is right?
· 2) Will it please God?
· 3) Does it edify?
· 4) It is expedient?
· 5) Will it bring glory to God?
· 6) Can I sincerely thank God for it?
· 7) How will it appear at the Judgment Seat of Christ?
o What should be the believer’s relationship with the world?
· If you are a friend of this world, the scriptures say in James 4:4, “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”
§ Friendship includes the worlds people, its plans, and its policies.
o The Scriptures tell us:
· 1 John 2:15, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world.”
· 1 Corinthians 7:31, instruct us to use the world but don’t abuse it.
§ I.e. of using the world to make a living to take of yourself and family.
§ But don’t become a part it
§ Be in the world but not of it
§ Don’t make the world your chief aim.
· Jesus reminds us as His disciples that we are not of this world in John 17:14, 16.
· Always remember that the spiritual battle we fight as believers is “against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
“Things We Need To Consider”
ð Text: Luke 12:22-31
o We want to look at some things as God’s children that “We Need To Consider.”
o Consider = To fix the mind on with a view of careful examination; to think on with care to ponder, to study; to meditate.
ð I. Consider The Provisions of God
o The point Jesus was trying to get across here in Luke 12:24&27.
· Jesus was saying consider or observe how God cares for the ravens by feeding them and he clothes the lilies.
o We as His children are certainly more important to Him that the fowls of the air and the lilies of the field.
o So, we can expect Him to take care of us as His children.
o So, our focus each day should be to “seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness.”
o By considering the ravens and the lilies of the field then we as God’s children should be a WORRY FREE PEOPLE!
o My friend maybe that is why you have been full of worry and care because you have not been considering the fowls of the air and how God cares for them.
· How he clothes the lilies of field.
o You see if you are full of care and worry then you don’t have time for “seeking first the kingdom of God and his righteousness.”
o You see God says you do the seeking and I will do the providing.
ð II. Consider God’s Son - Hebrews 3:1;12:3
o Consider His Suffering
· “…he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities:…” – Isa. 53:5
· “I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.” – Isa. 50:6
· “Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust” – 1 Peter 3:18
o Consider His Sacrifice
· “Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us:…” – 1 John 3:16
· “Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.” – Eph. 5:2
o Consider His Saving
· “Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.” – Hebrews 7:25
o Result If We Consider God’s Son;
· “…lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.” – Hebrews 12:3
· Won’t grow weary and quit serving Him.
· Consider all that He went through for us and compare what you are going through for Him.
§ No comparison – Amen!!!
ð III. Consider God’s Wondrous Works – Job 37:14
o His creation as recorded in Genesis 1-3
· Man - Body
· Plant Life
· Grand Canyons
§ Marvels of evaporation and condensation
· Universe-Sun, moon, stars, planets, galaxies
· Sunrise and the Sunset
· Everything in perfect harmony
o Snow flake no two are the same
o Result of Considering God’s Wondrous Works
· Show just how small man is and how insignificant we are compared to God.
· We cannot begin to explain the Wondrous Works of God
· Show just how unintelligent man really is – Amen!!!
· We should Fear Him
§ See Psalm 33:6-9
ð IV. Consider The Great Things God Has Done For You –
o 1 Samuel 12:24
· He saved you and keeps you (can’t lose your salvation)
· He clothed you.
· He feeds you
· He gives you life and life more abundant
· He uses you if you will let Him
§ To witness to others on how to be saved.
§ To live a life that is a witness for Him.
§ To serve and support the local New Testament that He uses to carry out the great commission.
· He gives you a joy unspeakable and full of glory
· He has prepared a mansion in heaven for you.
· He will give you a peace that passeth all understanding if you let Him!!!
· He has taken the sting out of death for you.
· He snatched the victory from the grave for you.
· He has given you the greatest hope of all for you in the resurrection from the grave.
· He listens to and answers your prayers.
o As result of Considering;
· The Provisions of God
· God’s Son
· God’s Wondrous Works
· The Great Things God Has Done For You
o We need to as Christians to Consider Our Ways.
o See Haggai 1:2-11
· Here in this passage God is speaking to the Nations of Israel.
§ Twice in Vs. 5&7 – tells them to “Consider Your Ways”
§ In other words, the way that they were living.
§ You see as a Nation Israel was putting themselves and their personnel interests first before God.
§ As result of putting their interests first – building and repairing their homes instead of the House of God, they were getting very little for their efforts – See v. 6&10.
§ God also pronounced judgement – see vs. 10 & 11.
· My friend as a child of God you need to “Consider Your Ways” and see if they are pleasing to God or not.
· Maybe that is why you are always having financial problems – for example car trouble, lack of work, appliances always breaking down.
· Seems like you are working very hard but never seem to get anywhere like the Nation of Israel – See Haggai 1:6&10
§ Well, maybe you need to “Consider Your Ways” and see if you are putting God and the things of God first. – Amen!!!
“Come In-Come Out-Come Up”
a Text: Revelation 3:20-22, 2 Corinthians 6:14-18, & Revelation 4:1-3
o I want us to see three ways how the word “come” is used in relation to the believer.
· 1) Come In of Salvation
· 2) Come Out of Separation
· 3) Come Up of Sanctification
a I. COME-IN – SALVATION
o Rev. 3:20
o John 10:9
a II. COME-OUT – SEPARATION
o 2 Cor. 6:14-18
· From the World – Should Be Obvious
§ 1 John 2:15-17
· The Problem Many Christians Still Haven’t Come Out of the World.
§ If you are a friend of the world then you an enemy of God – James 4:4
· Many Christians like Lot sitting in the gate of Sodom
§ Being among the unsaved vexed his soul
§ Troubled his soul, he had no peace
§ See 2 Peter 2:7-8
· From Worldly or Carnal Christians
§ Many Christians have a struggle with this.
§ Separation from worldly or carnal Christians
§ Not preached but it is the Word of God.
§ Favorite verse of Christians who don’t believe in separation is “A friend loveth at all times”
§ Yes, we should love the person but still hate the sin.
§ If person won’t get right then suppose to treat as if unsaved.
§ See Mt. 18:15-17.
· The Apostle Paul calls them “enemies of the cross of Christ” – Phil 3:18.
· Carnal or worldly Christians cause envying, strife, and divisions within the church.
· Paul, addressed the problem in the church at Corinth
§ See 1 Cor. 3:1-3.
o Paul exhorts the believer to separate from the carnal Christian in several of his epistles.
· 1 Cor. 5:11
§ railer – someone who rails on another person, scoffs, insults
§ extortionner – wresting anything from a person by force.
· Romans 16:17-18
· 2 Thess. 3:6
o Often a Christian believes he can change the worldly or carnal Christian for the better.
· The Apostle Paul warns about this in 1 Cor. 15:33.
· Don’t fool yourself.
· You fellowship with that person for any period of time and you will be as backslidden as they are.
a III. COME-UP – SANCTIFICATION
o Rev. 4:1 – “come up hither”
o At the catching away of the church the body of Christ, each believer will be given a new glorified body.
o So, the believer will have total sanctification – body, soul, and spirit.
a The expression “come up hither” is used three times.
o Here is Rev. 4:1 – The church.
o Composed of all those who have been born again for the day of Pentecost to the rapture.
o Prov. 25:7 – Old Testament Saints
· Those who had been waiting in Abraham’s Bosom in the center of the earth.
· Waiting for the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
§ See Mt. 27:50-53.
§ See Eph. 4:8
§ See 1 Pe 3:18-19
o Rev. 11:12 – Tribulation Saints go up with two witnesses
o Are you ready for the Lord’s return?
o It is eminent.
o He could come at any time.
· See 1 Thess. 5:2
· Mt. 24:44
· 1 Pe. 4:7
· Rev. 3:3
“Have Ye Not Read?”
ð Text: Matthew 12:1-8
ð The title our message comes from verse 3 of our passage where Jesus says to the Pharisees, “Have Ye Not Read.”
o Ten times in the gospel accounts and six times alone in the Gospel of Matthew Jesus uses either the expression “Have Ye Not Read” or “Have Ye Never Read.”
o I believe in each instance the point that Jesus was trying to get across to those he was addressing was, “If you had read and studied the scriptures like you should have then you would not raise this particular issue to begin with.”
o In other words, the answer to the issue they were raising could be found in the scriptures.
o First, I want us to look at each of the instances where our Lord uses the expressions “Have Ye Not Read” or “Have Ye Never Read.”
· As we do notice with me the particular issue being debated and importance of it.
o Second, I want us to see how all of this applies to us today.
· Maybe if Jesus were physically with us today that He would say to some of you “Have Ye Not Read” or “Have Ye Never Read.”
ð I. “Have Ye Not Read” or “Have Ye Never Read.”
o A. Matthew 12:1-8 – Issue – Concerning the Sabbath
· v. 3 – “Have ye not read”
· v. 5 – “have ye not read”
· Account also found in Mark 2:23-28 & Luke 6:1-5
o B. Matthew 19:3-9 – Issue – Concerning Marriage
· v. 4 – “Have ye not read”
o C. Matthew 21:12-17 – Issue – Concerning Praise to God
· v. 16 – “have ye never read”
o D. Mathew 21:33-46 – Issue – Concerning the Rejection of Christ
· v. 42 – “Did ye never read in the scriptures”
· Account also found in Mark 12:1-12
o E. Matthew 22:23-33 – Issue – Concerning the Resurrection
· v. 31 – “have ye not read”
· Account also found in Mark 12:18-27
ð II. Still True Today
o I believe the same still holds true today.
· The reason trouble arises in our so called Bible Believing Independent Baptist Churches is because most members “Have not read” or “Have never read” never mind ever studied the Word of God.
· Because if Christians were reading and studying the word of God like they should then most things that become an issue would not be an issue to begin with.
o The sad fact in Jesus’ day when he said, “Have Ye Not Read” or “Have Ye Never Read” was that He was addressing the unsaved religious crowd of His day.
· However, we have many today that claimed to be saved, love the Lord, have the in dwelling Holy Spirit but still they “Have Not Read” or “Have Never Read.”
o The Apostle Paul understood the importance to reading and studying the Word of God because he instructed the young minister, Timothy –
· “Till I come, give attendance to reading,…” – 1 Timothy 4:13
· “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.” – 2 Timothy 2:15-16.
o Because most members of your so called Bible Believing Independent Baptist Churches “Have Not Read” or “Have Never Read” what we hear going on in most of these churches is nothing more than “profane and vain babblings”
· And as result the members act like they do not even know God.
o Oh! They may have all the religious buzz words and shout and holler during camp meeting time but just observe how they live their lives away from the church house.
· Jesus described this folks when he said “This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.” – Matthew 15:8
o That is why these same folks are always running to the Pastor asking him is alright to do something because they “Have Not Read”
· If they had read and studied the Word of God like they suppose to then they would not have to ask in the first place.
· I am not talking about the meat of the word but the milky things of the Word.
ð My friend do you claim to be a blood bought Child of God?
o Saved by the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ?
· Do you claim to love the Lord?
· Then you should love His Word.
o Do you have your own copy of the Word of God?
· You should and it should be by your side all the time.
· You should bring it to church and make notes in it as the Word is taught and preached – Amen!!!
o My friends like me ask you this – “Are you a Have Never Read Christian?”
o If you are then shame on you!
o You were redeemed by the blood of the crucified one and you won’t even read His Book!!!
ð I believe that is why so many Christians are always arguing with God, Have issues with Him and can’t discern His will for their lives because they “Have Never Read.”
o My friend won’t you start today to be faithfully reading and studying the Word of God.
o I pray that none of us here today will ever stand before Jesus and hear Him say “You Have Never Read”
ð My friend if you are here today and never trusted Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour
o Jesus said in John 5:39, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.”
o If you were to search the scriptures they would tell you as Jesus said that you can have eternal life by receiving Him as your personal Saviour.
o See John 1:12
o See Romans 10:9-10
o See 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 – vs. 2 “By which also ye are saved”
· The gospel of the grace of God
ð Won’t you be saved today?
“How To Kill Yourself”
a Text: Philippians 3:7-11
o The Apostle Paul tells us here in the passage that to really know the Lord Jesus Christ then there must be first a death (v.10, “being made conformable unto his death;”)
§ And second a resurrection (v. 11, “If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead”) in the life of each Christian.
§ The death and resurrection Paul is speaking about is not in the physical realm but the spiritual.
§ This is what Paul’s desire was as expressed here in the passage.
§ In fact, Paul let us know that this death and resurrection cannot be obtained by our own effort.
§ Paul expresses this very clearly in verses 3-8 (Paul’s Garbage Can)
o I believe the majority of Christians don’t really know or have an intimate relationship with the Lord because have not experienced that death and resurrection that Paul speaks about here in the passage.
§ This is obvious by how the average Christian conducts himself and his manner of conversation.
o What Paul is talking about is the old man, the old nature being put to death.
§ Remember, only your spirit was born again and not your flesh when you got saved.
o We often find Paul instructing the Christian as follows –
§ 2 Cor. 4:16, “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.”
§ Col. 3:10, “And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge (the word of God) after the image of him that created him:”
§ Eph. 4:23, “And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;”
§ Romans 12:2, “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
o You see my friend when one part of you dies another part takes over.
§ John the Baptist put it this way, “If I decrease then Christ will increase.”
a I want us first to look at “How Kill Yourself” so that you can really know Christ and have a close intimate relationship with Him.
o Next we will look at how the spiritual resurrection takes place after the death has occurred.
o Then finally, we will look at what is the outside evidence that this has taken place.
a I. HOW TO KILL YOURSELF
o A. Reckon Yourself Dead – See Romans 6:3-13
§ You need to die to self, sin, & system (world system)
§ You need to deny self and take up your cross.
§ To do this you must have the “mind of Christ” – Phil. 2:5
· The mind of Christ is found in Phil. 2:8
· Key – humbled, obedient, death
§ Allow God to crucify the old man.
o I believe the Apostle Paul had learned “How to Kill Himself”
§ See Galatians 2:20
§ Paul said, “…the life which I now live…”
· He referring not to the old life but the resurrected life.
· Notice what Paul said in Phil. 1:21
o B. Put Off The Old Man– See Ephesians 4:22-24
§ V. 22 – The death
§ Vs. 23-24 – The resurrection power – (we will talk about later on)
o C. Mortify Your Members– Kill/Destroy Flesh – Col. 3:5-10
§ Vs. 5-9 – Destruction
§ V. 10 – Resurrection
o D. Only Can Be Accomplished If Yielded to the Holy Spirit & Allow Him to subvert the flesh.
§ Can’t do under your own power.
§ See Galatians 5:16
a II. SPIRITUAL RESURRECTION
o How does the resurrection take place once the death has occurred?
§ Well, the scripture tells us that it was the power of the Holy Spirit that resurrected Christ from the dead.
§ Each believer has dwelling with in them that same power.
§ The Spirit is what does the renewing.
§ Titus 3:5, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;”
o It is the Spirit of God in you that gives you the power to live holy, live right, and to suffer.
a III. EVIDENCE KILLED YOURSELF AND BEEN RESURRECTED
o People and that also includes most Christians don’t understand you.
o Your own flesh will rise up against you.
o You begin to suffer.
§ If you allow God to crucify old man then going to suffer.
§ See 1 Peter 1:7, 5:10 & 2 Tim. 3:12.
o When you begin to suffer then you begin to experience the power of God.
§ Paul said, “Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” (2 Cor. 12:9)
o Along with the resurrected life you know Christ.
§ Because He is doing things through you.
§ It is Him doing the things and not you doing the things.
o When you see how He does it then you know Him.
§ How can you know Him if you are doing it?
o To know Him is to allow Him to take you through the death and suffering.
o Once you do this then you begin to experience the resurrected life where He does everything.
o You know it is not you doing it.
o And you can say as the Apostle Paul said, “I am crucified with Christ: neverthless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
o My friend can you really say what Paul said here in Galatians 2:20?
§ Have you reckoned, put off, and mortified that old man?
· If not you will never experience the resurrected life.
· You will never experience the power of God in and on your life.
§ If you have never done it won’t you today come to this old fashion altar and “Kill Yourself” by –
· Reckoning yourself dead
· Put Off the Old Man
· Mortify Your Members
“The Three Suppers In The Book of Revelation”
ð Text: Revelation 19:17-21
Ø One of the things Baptists enjoy most is church suppers.
- We find it difficult to fast.
- We find it difficult to witness.
- We find it difficult to give.
- We find it difficult to pray.
- But how we love our belly ship.
Ø There are many suppers mentioned in the Word of God.
Ø For example:
- Mark 6:21, King Herod made a supper to his lords on his birthday.
- At this supper John the Baptist had his head chopped off as a reward for the ungodly dance of Herod’s step daughter, Herodias.
- Luke 14, We are told a certain man made a great supper and bade many to come.
- However, many of the invited guests made excuses and did not attend.
- John 12, We are told that in the city of Bethany Jesus had supper with Lazarus and his sisters, Mary and Martha.
- It was at this supper that Mary anointed the feet of Jesus with the costly ointment of spikenard.
- Remember, the treasurer, Judas made a squawk about wasting the ointment because the money could have been used on the poor.
Ø Each of the Gospels given an account of the Passover supper or as it is traditionally known as the last supper that he has with his 12 Apostles.
- It is at this supper that Jesus washes the feet of his disciples and the devil enters the heart of Judas to betray the Lord.
- 1 Corinthians 11, the Apostle Paul delivers to us that which he received from the Lord, the ordinance of the Lord’s Supper.
- The Lord’s Supper is a memorial or a time of remembrance.
- Each time the Christian partakes of the bread and cup, he is reminded of the awful price that his sin cost God’s Son.
- The unleavened bread reminds us that Christ’s body was broken to pay for our sins.
- The unfermented wine or grape juice reminds us that Christ’s sinless blood was shed to pay for our sins.
Ø This morning I want us to look together at the three suppers mentioned in the Book of Revelation.
I. THE SUPPER OF SALVATION – REV. 3:20
Ø Every individual is given an invitation to sup with the Lord Jesus Christ.
Ø To partake of the Supper of Salvation.
Ø He invites all to:
- “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” Isaiah 1:18.
Ø He invites all to:
- “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28.
Ø He invites all to:
- “…Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” Revelation 22:17
Ø He promises:
§ “…I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” John 6:35
Ø He promises:
§ “…him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” John 6:37
Ø He not willing:
§ “…that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9.
Ø I believe that door of each person’s heart that Jesus is standing outside of has a knob on only one side.
§ I believe the knob is on the inside.
§ Jesus cannot force his way into anyone’s heart.
§ A person must open the door to his heart voluntarily to Jesus.
§ If you never have my friend open the door of your heart to Jesus Christ and let Him come in and sup with you, fellowship with you.
§ Won’t you do it today.
§ Won’t you repent of your sins and call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ to save you from going to a sinner’s hell.
Ø So, Number 1 we have The Supper of Salvation in the Book of Revelation.
Ø The Second Supper mentioned in Revelation is The Supper of the Saints or the marriage supper of the Lamb.
Ø My friend you cannot attend this supper unless you have already partaken of the First supper mentioned in Revelation.
Ø The Supper of Salvation where you let Jesus into your heart to sup with you.
II. THE SUPPER OF THE SAINTS OR THE MARRIAGE SUPPER OF THE LAMB – REV. 19:6-9
Ø This will be the most thrilling experience that believers will ever have.
- The church that is, the body of believers all the way from Pentecost (Acts 2) to the Rapture (1 Thess. 4) will be presented now to Christ as a bride for marriage.
- The marriage takes places in heaven and after the Judgment Seat of Christ near the end of the Tribulation.
- The “Bride of Christ” is now ready for the marriage.
- To “be ready” she has to be without “spot or wrinkle”, a glorious Church according to Ephesians 5:27.
- This is done by the purging and cleansing that will take place at the “Judgment Seat of Christ.”
Ø The marriage and the marriage supper takes place in heaven.
- The Lord will return at the second advent not only to judge the earth but also to begin 1,000 year honeymoon with His bride.
- Can you imagine a 1,000 year honeymoon.– Amen!
- The caterers of this supper will be heavenly. – Amen!
- My friend what a time of joy and ecstasy!
- To be finally married to the one that we have been espoused to as a chaste virgin.
- To finally be forever with the one we have been waiting for. – Amen!
Ø But again my friend to partake of this Marriage Supper of Lamb you must be saved, born-again.
Ø You must have first partaken of the Supper of Salvation we talked about in Revelation 3:20
Ø Let’s look at the last supper mentioned in the Book of Revelation.
III. THE SUPPER OF SUFFERING OR THE SUPPER OF THE GREAT
GOD – REVELATION 19:17-21
Ø My friend the Lord Jesus Christ is about to return at any time for his bride.
- The rapture of the church could happen at any time now and then the tribulation of seven years will begin.
Ø The Supper of the Great God will take place at the end of the Tribulation.
- Those invited to this supper are not individuals to sup with Christ and receive salvation.
- Those invited to this supper are not the saved from the day of Pentecost to the Rapture.
- No, those present at this supper are birds of the air – buzzards, vultures, ravens, eagles.
- Birds we often see on the road eating the remains of road kill.
- The food these birds are feasting on are the remains of Christ rejecting men.
- Men who made up the Antichrist’s army and who fell at the Battle of Armageddon.
Ø Let those who think that a loving God would never bring judgment upon sinful man notice the scavengers of the air serving in the kingdom, while Christ rejecting men are dead.
Ø My friend, there is a good chance that if you are not saved and go through the tribulation that you may end on the dinner table of these birds.
Ø Won’t you avoid being part of the Supper of the Great God and trust Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour.
Ø Repent of your sins and ask Jesus Christ to save you.
Ø As the Bible says, “Whosever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Ø If you do that then you will miss this supper and partake of the Supper of Salvation and the Supper of the Saints or the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.
Ø Won’t you come today and let Jesus Christ enter in through the door of your heart and sup with Him!
A Holy Addiction
Text: 1 Corinthians 16:15
The word "addicted" is found only once in the scriptures.
We here a lot today of the word addict.
¥ When we think of the word addict it is usually in a bad light.
¥ We hear of those being addicted to certain things and the programs designed to help addicts deal with there sin.
A person can be addicted to:
¥ Alcohol and other Drugs
¥ Prescriptions & Nonprescription Drugs
¥ Relationships - "Fatal Attraction"
¥ Computer Use
¥ Entertainment and Sports Personalities
According to Tabor's Medical Dictionary, addiction means to have a "physical dependence on a substance, with use of increasing amounts.
Mosby's medical dictionary defines it as: "compulsive, uncontrollable dependence on a substance or habit or practice to such a degree that ceasing causes sever emotional, and mental reactions.
Usually an addiction is an unholy practice and one that should never be a part of a Christian's life.
However, we see in our verse a group of folks that had a holy addiction.
They were junkies for Jesus.
Paul identifies them as the household of Stephanas.
¥ They were the first-fruits of Achaia, the first converts to Christianity in that region of Greece in which Corinth was.
¥ In fact, Paul the Apostle had baptized them - See 1 Cor. 1:16.
¥ They had addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints, to serve the saints.
¥ They had disposed and devoted themselves to serve the saints and service the saints.
¥ They supplied their wants and helped and assisted them upon all occasions, both in their temporal and spiritual needs.
We want to ask the question how does one become addicted to the ministry of the saints or a junkie for Jesus.
In order to become addicted to anything one must have an experience with it.
For example to become a drunk or be addicted to booze you must have first began with a drink of booze.
In order to become addicted to the ministry of the saints then you first must of had a salvation experience.
¥ Trusted Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour.
¥ Been born again.
¥ Believed that Christ died for your sins, was buried and rose again the third day.
If you have not had a salvation experience then you cannot become addicted to the ministry of the saints.
¥ No matter how hard you try you will not be able to:
o "...abound in love one toward another..." 1 Thess. 3:12
o "Let brotherly love continue." Hebrews 13:1
o "...by love serve one another." Gal. 5:13
o "...be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another,..." Eph. 4:32
o "...forbearing one another in love;" Eph. 4:2
That is why many who profess to be Christians can never be addicted to the ministry of the saints because they have never had a salvation experience.
Once one has experienced the substance or begun a pattern of behavior, it evolves or grows into a greater desire over time.
If a person has had a salvation experience, trusted Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour, their desire for the things of the Lord will grow or evolve over time.
For example a heroin addict desire for heroin increases over time not decreases.
The word of God tells us concerning the Christian's desire and growth of the things of the Lord.
¥ "But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ...." 2 Pe. 3:18
¥ "That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;" Col. 1:10
¥ "As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:" 1 Pe. 2:2
¥ "We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth;" 2 Thess. 1:3
The Christian's desire should be to grow in grace, to grow in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, and to grow in faith.
The Christian should desire to learn each day something from God's Word.
The addict will spare no expense to support his habit.
He will do whatever it takes to support his habit.
¥ Even to the point of robbery and murder.
A person addicted to the ministry of saints will spare no expense in serving and servicing the saints of God.
¥ His concern is for meeting the needs of others.
The word of God has a lot to say about giving to the saints of God:
¥ "...let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth." Eph. 4:28
¥ "...remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive." Acts 20:35
¥ "Distributing to the necessity of saints..." Romans 12:13
¥ "As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith." Galatians 6:10
¥ "That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate;" 1 Timothy 6:18
The Christian should spare no expense in ministering to the saints of God.
We have so many Christians today who spare no expense when comes to going to the hair salon, buying lottery tickets, supporting their favorite radio preacher, supporting their favorite contemporary Christian Music recording artist - Amen!!!
Buying toys for the kids and for themselves - Amen!!!
Most Christians can't get their car in their garage because it is full of stuff that they don't need - Say Amen!!!
Once a person has experience, evolved and spared no expense on their addiction they finally become engrossed.
They become oblivious to the world around them.
¥ They are totally absorbed by the substance or behavior that they are addicted to.
o They would have to be to get to the point to be able to resort to stealing or murder to feed their habit.
o They would have to be to get to the point where they don't care that they are hurting themselves and their families.
The difference between an unholy addiction and a holy addiction is that a holy addiction will not harm anyone and will glorify the Lord.
The word of God tells about glorifying God through the holy addiction of ministering to the saints -
¥ "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven." Mt. 5:16
¥ "Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation." 1 Pe. 2:12
The Christian should be become engrossed in ministering to the saints.
Christian you need to quit that habit whatever it maybe:
Not doing something can be an addiction -
¥ For example:
o Not praying!
o Not paying- giving financially to the local New Testament Church
o Not staying in the Book!
Why not become addicted like household of Stephanas.
¥ Notice the household of Stephanas, not just one person.
¥ You see if daddy is addicted to the ministry of the saints the whole family will be too!!!
¥ My dear friend won't you be a junkie for Jesus and give up all that other junk that got you weighed down!!!
How Tough Is Your Faith?
ð Text: 2 Cor. 5:7 & 2 Cor.1:24
è From the verses that we just read, the Word of God tells us that the Christian is to walk and stand by faith.
è So, then faith in the life of a Christian is very important because without it he can neither walk nor stand in the spiritual sense.
è The degree of faith a Christian has can be measured by the type of walk he has.
o A Christian who has a carnal walk is one who is caught up into emotional experiences or experiences that can be seen.
o I.e. – Babbling in Tongues and being slain in the so-called spirit.
è The degree of faith a Christian has can be measured by what it takes to bring him down from the standing position.
o In Ephesians 6, where the Bible talks about the Christian putting on the whole armor of God, three time within the passage the Christian is told to stand in the spiritual battle
§ V. 11 – “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”
§ V. 13 – “Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”
§ V. 14 – “Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;”
è Proverbs 24:10 – “If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small.”
o Today, we have Christians fainting at the first sign of trouble because their strength is small.
o Because their walk is not a walk of faith.
o Because their stand is not a stand of faith.
è Today, I ask you this question – “How Tough Is Your Faith”?
è I want us to look at three Bible examples of “Tough Faith”
è We will see in each of one these examples no matter what circumstances that the individual found himself that individual kept trusting in the God of the Bible.
è No matter how much the heat was turned up they kept on trusting in the Lord.
ð I. Job
è Here is a man that lost –
- All that he owned
- All his children
- His health
- Notice what his wife instructed him to do and how he responded in Job 2:9-10
- Finally his friends turn against him.
è Notice how this man of tough faith responds to his circumstances.
ð II. Three Hebrews – Shadrach, Meshach, & Abednego
è Daniel Chapter 3, these three young men remained true to their God and refused to bow down to the golden image of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon.
è As result the king became furious and in rage and told them that if they did not bow down to his image that they would be cast into a literal fiery furnace.
è Notice the response of “tough faith” – See Daniel 3:16-18.
è In essence what they said to the king was “God can save us but if not, we will serve him anyway.”
è These men had tough faith.
ð III. The Apostle Paul
è The Apostle Paul had been –
o Publicly whipped
o He had gone without adequate food and clothing
o He was stoned once and left for dead
è Paul give us a summary of his suffering in 2 Cor. 11:23-28
è He could have complained bitterly that the Lord had called him to a difficult task and then virtually abandoned him.
è He could have cried out to God, “Why me Lord!”
è But instead notice how a man of tough faith responded.
è Notice the words that he penned while in a Roman prison to the believers at Philippi.
o See Phil. 4:4-7
o See Phil 4:12-13
è Paul’s secret of contentment was this –
o To trust God regardless of the circumstances and not expect too much perfection in this life.
è He realized that a better day was coming for those whose source of contentment is in the personhood of the Lord Jesus Christ!
è At times in our lives we will find ourselves in situations or times of great adversity where it seems like God is not with us or has deserted us, has become silent, or God just doesn’t make sense.
è Times where our faith will be tested.
è What will your response be?
o Will you continue trusting in the Lord as these individuals did with tough faith.
o Or will you stopping walking by faith and try handling things yourself.
o Try to out think God.
o Look for the emotional experience
o Will you be of little strength, faint in the day adversity, and no longer stand by faith.
è Just – “How Tough Is Your Faith?”
ð Text: 1 Thessalonians 4:1
o Many a Christian is doing things that are displeasing to God.
· Few are pleasing Him.
o Our verse tells us as Christians if we want to abound in things of the Lord and be blessed of the Lord then we need to walk or live in such a way that is pleasing to Him.
ð First we want to look at:
ð I. THOSE WHO ARE NOT PLEASING GOD
o A. They that live for themselves.
· See Romans 15:1-3.
§ The word of God tells us that we ought not to please ourselves, for even Christ pleased not Himself.
§ In Mt. 20:28, we are told our Lord “came not to be ministered unto, but to minister….”
· Self is all the god they worship.
· Self is their satisfaction.
· Those wrapped up in themselves cannot properly worship God.
o B. They that seek to please men are not pleasing God.
· The Apostle Paul said in Galatians 1:10, “For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.”
· See James 4:4
o C. “They that are in the flesh…”
· See Romans 8:8
§ Carnal lives cannot please God.
· Paul said, “We …have no confidence in the flesh.” – Phil. 3:3
· The apostle Paul reminds us “But ye are not in flesh, but in the Spirit…” – Romans 8:9
o D. They that have no faith.
· Heb. 11:6, “But without faith it is impossible to please him:…”
· Christ is always pleased when He sees faith.
§ Man sick of palsy carried by four men – Mark 2:1-5
§ Healing of Syrophoenician’s Daughter – Mt. 15:21-28
ð Second we want to look at:
ð II. THOSE WHO ARE PLEASING
o A. Those who ask right things from the Lord.
· Solomon – See 1 Kings 3:5-15
§ Solomon asked for an understanding heart to discern between good and bad, and the speech pleased the Lord.
§ Notice what the Lord said to Solomon in vs. 12-13.
o B. The separated unto God.
· 2 Tim. 2:4 – We are not to be entangled in the affairs of this life in order “that we may please him.”
· 2 Cor. 6:14-18
· Titus 2:11-15
o C. The wholly yielded.
· Heb. 13:21 – “…to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight,…”
· Romans 12:1 – “….present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”
ð Poem entitled – “WAIT”
o Not so in haste, my heart;
o Have faith in God, and wait;
o Although He linger long,
o He never comes too late. –Anon.
o D. Those who walk with God.
· Gen. 5:24 – “Enoch walked with God…”
· Heb. 11:5 – “…He had this testimony that he pleased God.”
o E. Those who praise God.
· Psalm 69:30-31
o F. Those Who Offer the right sacrifices
· Heb. 13:16
o G. When children obey their parents
· Col. 3:20
ð Third we want to look at:
ð III. PROMISES TO THOSE WHO PLEASE GOD
o A. His enemies will be at peace with him.
· Proverbs 16:7.
o B. His prayers shall be answered.
· 1 John 3:22
o Pleasing God is following the example of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour.
· He said:
§ “I do always those things that please him (referring to the Father)”
§ “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.”
o We should be very careful to keep His commandments and do those things pleasing in His sight.
Things Paul Was Thankful For
ð Text: I Thess. 5:18 & Eph. 5:20
o We see from the Word of God that it is the will of God for the child of God to give thanks in every thing.
· The key words are every thing.
· Not just the things and situations that makes us happy and joyous but also the things and situations that the flesh finds it difficult to thank the Lord for.
· So, the revealed will of God for you and me is to “In every thing give thanks:…”
o On this Thanksgiving eve I want us to take a journey through some of the Pauline Epistles and look at some of the things Paul was thankful for,
ð I. God’s Program of Grace – 1 Cor. 1:4
o “I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ;”
ð II. God’s Power – 1 Tim. 1:12
o “And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;”
ð III. God’s People – 2 Thess. 1:3
o “We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth;”
ð IV. God’s Provision – I Tim. 4:4
o “For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:”
o “…He that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks;…” – Romans 14:6
ð V. God’s Plan of Salavtion – 2 Cor. 9:15
o “Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.”
"A Chaste Virgin"
Text: 2 Corinthians 11:1-4
-The Apostle Paul describes in 2 Corinthians 11:2, the church, the body of Christ as being espoused to one husband.
-In Ephesians 1:22-23, the church is identified as Christ's body.
-According to 1 Corinthians 12:12-13 and Galatians 3:26-27, when a person believes on and receives Jesus Christ as his personal Saviour then that individual is baptized by the Holy Spirit into the body of Christ.
-The word "espoused" means to betroth; to promise or engaged in marriage by contract in writing or by some pledge.
-Right now, as a Christian, you and I are espoused to one husband, the Lord Jesus Christ.
-The Lord Jesus Christ in John 3:25-30 is identified by John the Baptist as the bridegroom.
-The marriage between Christ and his bride, the church is yet future, just before his second coming after the tribulation.
-The marriage takes place in heaven according to Revelation 19:7-9; 21:9.
-To picture this future marriage between Christ and his bride, the church, God established the institution of marriage and the family with Adam and Eve.
-The marriage between a saved man and a saved woman pictures this future marriage (Ephesians 5:22-32).
-We want to notice that God makes it very clear in His word that a marriage is not to be of the same sex (Matthew 19:4-6).
-Adam and Eve and not Adam and Steve were created and joined together in the Garden of Eden.
-We have seen how espoused meant to betroth; to promise or engaged in marriage by contract in writing or by some pledge.
-Each Christian has the promise of this future marriage in a contract written in blood, God's own blood. i.e., Acts 20:28, 1 Corinthians 6:20, 1 Peter 1:18-19.
-We have a pledge given in the precious shed blood of Jesus. - Amen!!!
-In light of all of this the Apostle Paul continues and says in 2 Corinthians 11:2, "...that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ".
-This was the same way, same condition that Mary was to be presented to Joseph.
-So, you can imagine why Joseph must have been very upset, when he first heard the news of Mary being with child.
-Why it took a supernatural visit from an angel of God to calm and alleviate Joseph's concerns.
-We need to define "chaste"
-In relation to our conduct, chaste means pure from all unlawful sexual intercourse applied to a person before marriage, it signifies pure from all sexual intercourse, undefiled.
-Applied to married person - true to marriage bed.
-In relation to our speech, chaste means - free from obscenity.
-As applied to language it means pure, genuine, uncorrupt, free from barbarous words, and from quaint, affected, extravagant expression.
-In view of all of this, I ask, "how many of us are living as the Apostle Paul described as "espoused to one husband", the Lord Jesus Christ, living as "chaste virgin"".
-The sad fact is the majority of Christians have been stepping out on their husband, the Lord Jesus Christ!!!
-They have been cheating, defiling the marriage bed.
-They have left their first love.
-Well, who has the Christian been fooling around with?
-THAT OLD WICKED WORLD!
-Notice how James calls it in James 4:4 - "Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."
-That is exactly what most Christians are doing, they are committing "adultery."
-They have forgotten that they are espoused to one husband, the Lord Jesus Christ.
-They have forgotten that they are to conduct themselves until the marriage between the church and Christ as a "chaste virgin."
-The Christian should be living a life pure in conduct and speech, undefiled, untouched by the world.
-The Christian should be living their life in anticipation of the wedding day.
-However, most Christians instead have been living their lives in just the opposite manner.
-They have closed their eyes and ears to the Bible admonition of separation from the world. i.e., 1 John 2:15-16, 2 Corinthians 6:14-18.
-If you look at how the average Christian is dressed today, you would never know they were espoused to one husband, and living as a "chaste virgin".
-In 1 Timothy 2:9-11, we given the Christian woman's standard of dress.
-"In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But which becometh women professing godliness with good works. Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection."
-Most of our Christian ladies, instead of dressing to bring honor and glory to their espoused husband are dressing to attract the world.
-They are like a billboard saying, "Notice me!"
-The key words in 1 Timothy 2:9-11 are "modest apparel".
-Dressing in such a way as not to bring attraction to yourself.
-That means not wearing short and tight skirts.
-That means not wearing pants loose or tight.
-That means not wearing excessive make-up, so that you look like a whore!!!
-When you dress in any other way than the biblical way than you are not professing godliness and are in open rebellion to the word of God.
-Other ways Christians step out on their espoused husband is by spending His money on worldly activities and instead of on Him.
-i.e., Lottery and any form of gambling; filthy TV, magazines, books, movies, videos, and music; smoking, booze, and illegal drugs.
-CCM - Contemporary Christian Music is nothing but the devil in disguise.
-Just compare the album covers between CCM and the worldly musicians.
-I have a hard time telling the difference. Amen!!!
-In other words Christians today are involved in activities that a "chaste virgin" espoused to one husband would not do.
-A chaste virgin espoused to one husband would want to learn as much about her future husband as possible.
-The Christian learns more about Christ not standing in the state lottery line, not at the blockbuster video store, not in front of the big screen TV.
-No a Christian learns more about their future husband by attending church and spending time in the Word of God and prayer.
-Remember, you are espoused to one husband, the Lord Jesus Christ.
-He is the one that saved you with His precious sinless blood and not the world.
-So, stop fooling around with the world and starting living for your future husband, the Lord Jesus Christ.
“Are You A Fire Proof Christian?”
Text: I Corinthains 3:10-15
- Subject of the Passage – The Judgment Seat of Christ
- All Christians will stand before
- Without exception
- No unsaved will be there
- Romans 14:10 – “But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.”
- Where Judgment Takes Place – In the air after rapture of the church.
- What is being judged – Not salvation
- The believer is being judged for his works after he is saved.
- 1 Cor 3:13 tells us – “Every man's work shall be made manifest…”
- 2 Cor 5:10 tells us – “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.”
- After a person is saved then good works should follows as evidence of their salvation.
- The Lord does not just save us and then take us to heaven.
- We are saved to do good works that will glorify our Heavenly Father.
- We are all very familiar with Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
- However, let us notice what the Bible says in Ephesians 2:10 – “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”
- Titus 2:14 – “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.”
- One of the reason the Lord gave Himself for us was so we would be zealous of good works.
- John 9:4 – Jesus said, “I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.”
- Result of Judgment
- Rewards or loss of rewards
- Rewards in the Bible described as crowns
- Crown are to be thrown at the feet of Jesus
- Loss of reward or crown will bring shame
- Because will not have crown to throw at the feet of Jesus.
- Our works will be tried by fire
- I Cor 3:13 – “…the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.”
- For those works that remain there will be a reward.
- 1 Cor. 3:14 – “If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.”
- Those works that do not remain will suffer lose of reward.
- 1 Cor. 3:15 – “If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.”
- Notice – Will lose reward but still saved.
- Classification of Works
- Two Classes of building materials
- To build upon our spiritual foundation – The Lord Jesus Christ.
- 1 Cor. 3:11 – “For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.”
- Why this judgment for believers only.
- The foundation of every believer is the Lord Jesus Christ.
- The Lord Jesus Christ referred to in the scriptures as –
- “Chief Corner Stone”
- “The Rock”
- Two Classes of Building Materials
- 1 Cor 3:12 – “Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;”
- Fireproof – gold, silver, precious stones.
- Combustible – wood, hay, stubble
- The Key
- Whether or not you are building with fireproof or combustible materials.
- 1 Cor. 3:13 – “…the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.”
- Sort or Motive
- Correct - 2 Cor. 5:14 – “For the love of Christ constraineth us; …”
- Christ’s love should be the only motive to compel a Christian to do something. – fireproof
- Wrong – Self-glory
- 1Cor. 3:21 – “Therefore let no man glory in men…”
- We need to ask ourselves what is our motivation.
- Or what compels us to do something
- Is it to bring glory to ourselves and be notice by others.
- If that is the motivation as good as an act may seem it is going to go up in flames at the Judgment Seat of Christ.
- Loss of reward – loss of a crown
- Or is it the love of Christ that compels us do something.
- So that Christ gets glorified and notices.
- Then it is fireproof and will earn to a reward and a crown to throw at the feet of Jesus.
- Again - You need to ask yourself
- Are You A Fireproof Christian?
- Will your works remain or will they be burnt up at the Judgment Seat of Christ.
- My friend if you have never received Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour.
- Believing that it is His shed blood and nothing else that pays for your sins and saves you from going to hell.
- Then Bible describes the judgment that you will stand at some day
- Please turn to Revelation 20:11-15
- Great White Throne Judgment and the Lake of Fire is your eternal destiny.
- Won’t you trust Christ and be saved today?
"Barabbas, The Prisoner Set Free"
Text: Matthew 27:15-26
-Barabbas, the man that the Jewish rulers and people chose to be released instead of our Lord Jesus Christ.
I. Barabbas's Testimony
-We want to look at Barabbas's testimony or "rap sheet".
-What better way to do this then let the scriptures speak for themselves.
-Matthew 27:16 - "notable prisoner"
-He had notoriety.
-He was not any ordinary prisoner.
-He had a reputation and as the saying goes, "his reputation preceded him."
-Mark 15:7 - "had made insurrection"
-Insurrection = A rising against civil or political authority.
-He was a rebel against the Government, that God ordained.
-He was rebellious, had a problem submitting to authority.
-Mark 15:7 - "who had committed murder in the insurrection"
-He was a murderer.
-Luke 23:19 - "(who for a certain sedition made in the city, for murder,
was cast into prison)"
-Sedition = He was a trouble maker.
-Barabbas was in prison for a reason.
-He had not been falsely accused.
-Luke 23:25 - "And he released unto them him that for sedition and murder
was cast into prison."
-John 18:40 - "Now Barabbas was a robber..."
-Summary of Barrabbas - Character of the man that was released.
-Rebel - anti-government, insurrection & sedition, wanted to overthrow the government.
-If went into the Post Office you would see his picture on the wall with the other criminals.
-Today, they would show his picture on "America's Most Wanted".
-What can we conclude from all of this?
-That Barabbas had a legimate reason to be in jail.
II. JESUS' TESTIMONY
Before His crucifixion:
-Pilate declared three times concerning Jesus - "I find no fault"
-John 18:38 - "I find in him no fault at all."
-John 19:4 - "I find no fault in him."
-John 19:6 - "I find no fault in him"
-The repentant thief on the cross said of Jesus - "...but this man hath done
nothing amiss." - Luke 23:41
-Mark 15:31 - The chief priests with the scribes said concerning Jesus -
"...He saved others"
-Matthew 27:43 - The same crowd that clamored for Jesus' crucifixion and said -
"He trusted God"
After the crucifixion:
- Luke 23:47 - The centurion, a Gentile, a Roman official said -
"Certainly, this was a righteous man"
-Matthew 27:54 - The centurion said - "Truly this was the Son of God"
III. COMPARISON BETWEEN JESUS VS. BARABBAS
Jesus vs Barabbas
"no fault" - innocent man murderer - guilty man
"done nothing amiss" - law abiding rebel - insurrection/sedition
"saved others" hurt others
"trusted God" trusted in himself
"righteous man" or just man unrighteous or unjust
helped others robber - took from others
"the Son of God" "the son of the Devil" Jn. 8:44
-What happen that day was the greatest injustice of all time.
-The evidence was overwhelming.
-The wrong man was released.
-The wrong man was put to death.
-But as I think of all of this, I am reminded of what the LORD said in Isaiah 55:8,
"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD."
-What the release of Barabbas pictures is the release each sinner receives from his individual sentence, when he individually receives Jesus Christ as his personal Saviour.
-The sentence of all those who DO NOT receives Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour is found in:
-Romans 6:23 - "For the wages of sin is death..."
-Revelation 20:11-15 - "And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire."
-Some may say, "Well, I am not capable of committing murder, sedition, or robbery as Barabbas did."
-Don't kid yourself.
-The Bible says in Galatians 5:19-21 - "Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told [you] in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God."
-The Bible says about the heart in Jeremiah 17:9 - "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it."
-Jesus said concerning the heart in Matthew 15:18-19 - "But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: "
-So, we should not have a high opinion of ourselves!
-Just as Barabbas was in rebellion against the Government of Rome, an enemy of the Government.
-Public Enemy Number One.
-So isn't everyone who is without Jesus Christ an enemy of God.
-Romans 5:10 says - "...we were enemies..."
-Walking after the spirit of this world, the spirit of disobedience.
-In Romans 5:6-9, tells us the Christ died for the ungodly.
"For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him."
-Barabbas was certainly ungodly.
-He is a representation of all sinners.
-In others words, Barabbas pictures you and I before salvation without Christ, without strength, ungodly.
-Christ was substituted for Barabbas.
-He was substituted for you and I.
-He who knew no sin was made sin for us.
-1 Peter 3:18 - "For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just [Jesus Christ] for the unjust [Barabbas, you and I, all sinners], that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit."
-Christ's sacrifice at Calvary effected the sinner's release from prison, from the bondage of sin.
-Just as the crowd had a choice back then.
-The crowd has the same choice this very day.
-The crowd back at the cross chose the sinner and sin over the Saviour and salvation.
-Pilate said to the crowd, "What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ."
-The choice is the same today; Barabbas or Jesus; Sin or Salvation.
-Sin = bondage to sin and eternal destiny the lake of fire.
-Salvation = freedom from sin and eternal destiny, heaven with the Lord Jesus Christ.
-Remember, Christian when you give someone the gospel and they refused to be saved, reject the Saviour.
-It is the same cry of crowd back at the cross that yelled- "Away with this man, and release unto us Barabbas"
-Who will you chose Barabbas or Jesus?
-The choice is yours!
"Do What You Can"
Text: Mark 14:1-9
Ø -We can learn a valuable lesson from the woman in our passage. -Verse 8, Jesus tells us - "She hath done what she could"
-Notice what it doesn't say about this woman.
Ø -Doesn't say she did something supernatural.
Ø -She didn't speak in tongues.
Ø -She didn't heal the sick.
Ø -She didn't raise the dead.
Ø -She didn't do anything above what she was capable of doing.
Ø -She basically "did what she could" - Amen!!!
Ø -And our Lord commended her for it,
Ø -Jesus says in verse 6, "she hath wrought a good work on me."
Ø -The way you can tell you are doing right by the Lord is when the so-called spiritual Christians criticize you.
Ø -In the same account in Matthew 26, notice what the disciples opinion was of what she had done, - read vs. 8-9.
Ø -But nevertheless our Lord commended her for what you had done, and made sure that it was written down in His Word so that others might learn from her.
Ø -We need to learn a lesson from this woman,
Ø -You see the problem with most Christians is they don't even do what they could, never mind doing anything above and beyond the call of duty.
Ø -All our Lord asks of us is to do what we can.
Ø -But we must be honest with ourselves about what we can do for the Lord.
Ø -Most of the time, we will convince ourselves that we can't when we can. - Amen!!!
Ø -If every Christian did what he could, then we would have a revival. - Amen.
Ø -God knows what our individual responsibilities are family, job, school, etc.
Ø -But all he is asking from each of us is to do what we can.
Ø -We want to look at some areas, "If every Christian did what he could", what the results would be.
I. IF EVERY CHRISTIAN DID WHAT HE COULD IN REGARDS TO MISSIONS GIVING.
Ø -More souls saved
Ø -World probably would have been evangelized by now.
Ø -But because Christians are not doing what they could.
Ø -Missionaries are having to come off the field and raise more support.
Ø -Missionaries have to spend 3-5 years on deputation trying to raise money.
Ø -Wearing themselves and their families out.
Ø -Causing them to get discourage and quit,
Ø -All because Christians are not doing what they could when it comes to missions giving.
Ø -Christians spend God's money on more foolishness.
Ø -The Lord is going to have a lot to say to some Christians when they hit the judgment seat of Christ.
Ø -You don't need a subscription to Sports Illustrated.
Ø -You shouldn't be looking at the swim suit issue.
Ø -Christians spend more money on pet food they do missions.
Ø -Christian you should not be smoking.
Ø -Quit your smoking, give the money to missions.
Ø -Not only will souls be saved but you will save your physical body also.
Ø -Christian you don't need cable TV.
Ø -Take the $30 or more a month and give to missions.
Ø -I can could go on and on.
Ø -But you get the idea.
Ø -Are you doing what you can in regards to missions.
Ø -Be honest now.
II. IF EVERY CHRISTIAN DID WHAT HE COULD IN REGARDS TO PRAYER.
Ø -More Souls Saved.
Ø -The reasons your family may not be getting saved is because you spend more time watching the TV, listening to the radio, or reading the newspaper.
Ø -Then you do on your knees praying for their soul to be saved.
Ø -If you did all you could in regards to prayer then maybe your pastor would be encouraged more instead of being discouraged.
Ø -You should be praying for your pastor.
Ø -That's doing what you could.
Ø -If you did what you could in regards to prayer, then maybe you would see the power of God in your life.
Ø -The Bible tells us about a man called Elijah.
Ø -The Bible describes him in the Book of James as "a man subject to like passions as we are"
Ø -In other words, he was a human being like you and I subject to all the physical pains and sufferings.
Ø -But he did what he could in regards to prayer because he was able to called down fire from heaven.
Ø -His prayers controlled the weather.
Ø -His prayer stopped it from raining for 3 1/2 years.
Ø -His prayers brought rain.
Ø -If you did what you could in regards to prayer, then maybe you would see your church grow.
Ø -We need to stop throwing a pity party about why aren't there more people in the church and start doing what you could.
III. IF EVERY CHRISTIAN DID WHAT HE COULD IN REGARDS TO CHURCH ATTENDANCE
Ø -We have three services a week.
Ø -Wednesday Night Prayer Meeting, Sunday Morning, and Sunday Night.
Ø -Most Christians complain that is too much church.
Ø -Turn to Hebrews 10:25.
Ø -Notice that the Bible tells us we are to assemble together, "so much the more, as ye see the day approaching."
Ø -The day approaching is the Lord's return.
Ø -The reason that the Lord wants us to be in church more and more and more as His coming gets closer is because He knew that the world would get more wicked at the time of His coming.
Ø -We need to be in church at a minimum of three times a week to get the filth of the world out of us.
Ø -Being in church when the doors are open is doing what you could.
Ø - If every Christian did what he could in regards to church attendance then we wouldn't have so many carnal Christians floating around causing divisions and splits in the church.
Ø -You see that you need to be in church to get the stinken world knocked out you.
Ø -You leave this church and you go out into the sights and sounds of the world.
Ø -These sights and sounds have a tendency to hypnotize a person.
Ø -When you come to church you get a dose of reality because you are hearing the truth.
Ø -The world will tell you that you are okay.
Ø -The truth, the Word of God will tell you that there is nothing good about your flesh.
Ø -That your flesh stinks.
Ø -That why it smells when it decays.
Ø -Are you doing all that you could when it comes to church attendance?
Ø -If you are not then don't expect God to do what he could for you!
IV. IF EVERY CHRISTIAN DID WHAT HE COULD IN REGARD TO
SUPPORTING HIS PASTOR
Ø -Probably fewer would quit.
Ø -It doesn't take much,
Ø -Giving him respect like the Bible says - I Tim. 5:17.
Ø -Letting him rule over you like the Bible says - He. 13:17
Ø -Remember him - He. 13:7
Ø -Remember him financially through your giving - 1 Cor. 9:14
Ø -Remember him spiritually in prayer
Ø -Remember him with little acts of kindness.
Ø -One the sweetest sounds to a pastor is, "Pastor is there anything you need help with?" (temporal jobs are as important as spiritual ones)
Ø -Kind word now and then
Ø -Don't be so quick to criticize.
Ø -He is giving all the time, what about you?
Ø -Isn't it about time you gave a little back?
Ø -Are you doing what you could in regards to support your pastor?
V. IF EVERY CHISTIAN DID WHAT HE COULD IN REGARD TO HIS SIN.
Ø -See II Chronicles 7:14
Ø -"If" = condition
Ø -"my people" = God's people - "which are called by my name"
Ø -Some things we need to do.
Ø -"shall humble themselves"
Ø -"seek my face", seek God's face, instead of the world's
Ø -"turn" (repent), "from their wicked ways" (sin)
Ø -"then will I hear from heaven" - sin keeps God from hearing us.
Ø -"will forgive their sin"
Ø -"will heal their land" - revival,
Ø -Christians are quick to blame the Government, the unsaved, the devil for their problems.
Ø -Instead we need to blame ourselves
Ø -The reason no revival, the reason world is so wicked is because Christians have lost their savor.
Ø -The Christian is suppose to be the salt of earth.
Ø -Salt prevents decay.
Ø -Reason no revival because Christians are not doing what they could in regards to sin,
Ø -Christian are you doing what you could in regards to sin in your life?
Ø -We don't have time for the last two:
Ø -1) Are you doing what you could in regards to reading & studying your Bible?
Ø -2) Are you doing what you could in regards to soul winning?
Ø -My dear friend are you doing what you could in regards to:
Ø -I) mission giving
Ø -2) prayer
Ø -3) church attendance
Ø -4) supporting your pastor
Ø -5) your sin
Ø -6) reading & studying your Bible
Ø -7) soul winning
Ø -It is my prayer that when each one of us stands before the Lord, that he will say as he did about the woman in Mark 14,
Ø -"she hath wrought a good work on me"
Ø -"she hath done what she could"
Ø -I pray if you are not, then you will "Do what you can"
“What Shall We Have Therefore?”
a Text: Matthew 19:16-30
o The title of the message comes from v. 27.
o Peter asked the Lord what he and the other disciples would received for forsaking all and following Jesus.
o Peter asks the question “What Shall We Have Therefore?”
o I want us to look at seven things that the born again child of God will receive as a result of forsaking all and following Jesus.
a I. A RAPTURE
o 1 Thess. 4:13-18
a II. A RESERVATION (INHERITANCE)
o 1 Peter 1:4
· We have an inheritance reserved for us in heaven.
· Can’t loose it.
· Based on being a son of God – See Romans 8:15-18
· v. 17, “And if children, then heirs; heirs of God,…”
o How does one become a son of God, a child of God?
· See John 1:12
· See Galatians 3:26
a III. A REWARD
o Colossians 3:24
o Rev. 22:12
o 2 John 8
· Rewards are earned based on works performed after get saved.
o How the Lord determines whether a believer receives or loses a reward.
· See 1 Corinthians 3:10-15
a IV. A RETURN
o Rev. 19:11-14
a V. A REIGN
o A reign with the Lord Jesus Christ on the literal earth for 1,000 years.
o Rev. 20:4
o This reign is based on suffering for Christ now.
· See 2 Tim 2:12
a VI. A REUNION
o With Saved ones who gone on before.
· 1 Cor. 13:12 – We will know our love ones.
o With our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
· 1 John 3:2
a VII. A REASON
o 1 Peter 3:15
o As believers we have a reason of the hope that is in us.
o That hope is that life does not end at death but is eternal.
o That some day every saved person will be resurrected and taken to heaven to be with Jesus.
o This is based on Christ’s finished work at Calvary.
o His precious blood that was shed to paid for all the sins of mankind.
o As believers we need to testify of the reason for that hope that in us to the unsaved.
o God have given each believer the earnest or down the payment for our future resurrection in the indwelling Holy Spirit.
· See Ephesians 1:13-14
o We ask the question, What Shall We Have Therefore? for forsaking all and following Jesus.
o We have seen that the believer will have –
· A RAPTURE
· A RESERVATION (INHERITANCE)
· A REWARD
· A RETURN
· A REIGN
· A REUNION
· A REASON
“Things In The Past That We Need To Forget”
“Things That Keeps Us From Going Forward”
ð Text: Philippians 3:13-14
o V. 13 – “…forgetting those things which are behind…”
· The Apostle Paul is instructing us that there some thing is our past that we need to forget.
▪ He expresses this by saying “things which are behind.”
▪ In other words, thing that have already happen, that are in past.
▪ Things that you cannot change.
o The reason Paul instructs us to forget those things that have happen in the past because they will hinder us from going forward.
· V. 13 – “reaching forth unto those things which are before”
o You can’t go in two directions at the same time.
· You can’t go forward if you are constantly going backwards or living in the past.
o Paul is passing along this lesson to us that he has learned by experience.
· He says in v. 13, “…I count myself to have apprehended…”
· Obviously, Paul in the past had tried living in the past and not forgetting those things that he should have.
▪ I believe it hinder his work for the Lord until the Lord showed him differently.
▪ So Paul is telling us “learn from my experiences”.
o The reason Paul tells us “forgetting those things which are behind” is because it hinder us reaching our goal.
· The goal being in v. 14, “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”
▪ Serving the Lord according to His will.
▪ Fighting the good fight of faith.
▪ Finishing the course.
▪ Keeping the faith.
o You see that you can’t do that unless you forget those things that have happen in the past.
· Unless you look forward and not backward.
· You need to be “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith”.
▪ I can hear some of you quoting Hebrews 12:2.
▪ You need not only be able to quote it but do it!!!
o I want us to look at some “Things In The Past That We Need To Forget.” Or “Things That Keeps Us From Going Forward.”
ð I. PAST SINS
o The devil will tell you that God can’t use you because of some past sin in your life.
· You need to remind the devil what the Word of God says 1 Jn. 1:7 – “…the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”
o Notice what the Apostle Paul said about himself in 1 Tim. 1:12-15.
· Despite his past sins God mightily used him after his conversion.
o How about the woman at the well in John 4 that Jesus dealt with.
· She had been married five times and the current man she was living in sin with was not her husband.
· Despite her past and current sins upon her conversion the Lord used her to bring many to him.
▪ See John 4:29-30.
o So, don’t allow the devil to bang you over the head about your past sins.
· Remember, the Lord can and will use you for his honor and glory despite your past.
o Even after being saved the Christian will sin.
· The devil will use that against you.
· He will tell you that you have lost your testimony and you all washed up for the Lord.
▪ Again, use the sword on him, the word of God.
▪ Remind him of God’s promise in 1 John 1:9.
o Your situation will probably change because of your sin.
· Remember, there are always consequences to sin.
o For example, even though David was a man after God’s own heart, his life was never the same because of his sins of adultery and murder.
o However, God can still use you for his honor and glory after getting right with him.
· Remember, God is the God of second chances.
▪ I.e. – Jonah.
ð We need to forget Past Sins
ð We need to forget
ð II. PAST SUCCESSES
o Some Christians are living in the past and resting on past successes.
· These folks like to talk about their past successes and accomplishments in the ministry.
· This kind of person likes to have the pre-eminence, because they are always talking about what they accomplished in the ministry.
· Some times this individual will develop the attitude that they know and you don’t.
o They are basically living on the memories of the past.
· This type of person can be a stumbling block to a ministry.
· Especially, when a ministry is trying to go forward, this individual will keep trying to pull it back into the past.
o These folks are reluctant to hear and support new ideas.
· You see change makes them feel like they no longer have control or in charge.
o Sad, to say some folks don’t even want to see a church grow and take on new members because they want things to remain the same.
o You see that you need to forget the past successes, deal with the present and look forward to the future.
· Proverbs 29:18, reminds us “Where there is no vision, the people perish…”
ð We need to forget Past Successes
ð We need to forget
ð III. PAST SORROWS
o Christians can get caught up and overwhelmed by past sorrows.
· The lost of a spouse.
· The lost of a child.
· The lost of a parent.
· The lost of a sibling.
· The lost of a friend.
o A Christian can allow grief to overcome them and end up in deep depression.
· Don’t get me wrong.
· I believe that it is all right and appropriate for a Christian to grieve over the lost of a love one.
· In fact, if you don’t grieve properly then you can end up doing yourself some emotional damage.
· Grieving is a natural process human beings are to go through.
o But if not put in the proper prospective it can keep a Christian from going forward in his service for the Lord.
· We are told in Genesis 23:2, that Abraham mourn and wept over the lost of his wife Sarah.
· After he gave his wife a proper burial, then in the next Chapter 24, Abraham sends out his servant to find a bride for his son Isaac.
· Abraham did allow his sorrow for his wife to overwhelm him.
▪ He goes back to the business of life and serving the Lord.
ð We need to forget Past Sorrows
ð We need to forget
ð IV. PAST SLIGHTS
o A Christian has to be careful not to allow past slights from keeping him going forward.
· Keep him from serving the Lord.
o A root of bitterness has destroyed more Christian friendships and churches than anything else.
o The word of God tells us about bitterness.
· See Eph. 4:31-32 – “put away”
· See Heb. 12:15 – “defiles”
o Notice how the Apostle Paul dealt with past slights.
· See 2 Tim. 4:16-17
▪ Paul was deserted by friends – “all men forsook me;”
· He did not allow a root of bitterness spring up and defile him.
· He did not allow past slights to keep him from going forward.
▪ Serving the Lord.
▪ Finishing his course.
· Notice what Paul prayed there in v. 16, “I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge.”
· Our reaction would be “I hope that they get what they deserve!”
o You, see Paul didn’t allow past slights to take his eyes off the Lord.
· Keep him from going forward.
o You see Paul had his eyes on the “…prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”
ð We need to forget Past Slights
ð We need to forget
ð V. PAST SHEPHERDS
o One thing that has a devastating effect on a local church is when the shepherd or the pastor falls to sin.
· i.e – First church in after saved the pastor fell to adultery.
· The church eventually ended up closing its doors.
· As a result, some in that congregation stopped going to church, stopped serving God.
· Some folks worshipped that man and not the Lord that they felt it was okay for him to continue to be the pastor.
o A pastor is someone that you should be able to trust in and depend upon.
· He should set the example for the rest of the church to follow.
o The Apostle Peter instructed pastors in 1 Peter 5:3, “Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being examples to the flock.”
o The Apostle Paul told the church at Corinth, “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” – 1 Corinthians 11:1
· The key here in this verse is follow the pastor as long as he is following Christ.
▪ If he is following Christ, then he is also following the Word of God.
· When you see the man of God deviating from the scriptures then stop following him because he is no longer following Christ.
· No just the obvious sins like committing adultery or stealing church funds but the not so obvious.
▪ Like using the perverted Bibles – NIV, NASB, Living Bible, etc.
▪ I think this is obvious but some folks don’t – Allowing women to take the pulpit as a preacher and be addressed as reverend.
o Psalm 118:8, reminds us, “It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.”
ð We need to forget Past Shepherds
ð We need to forget
ð IV. PAST SHEEP
o What I mean by past sheep is Christians who have broken fellowship with God because of sin in their life & won’t get right.
· It is a hard thing to do.
▪ To have nothing to do with Christians that you once fellowshipped with.
· However, if they won’t get right with God, they are going to pull you down.
▪ Keep you from serving God.
▪ Keep you from going forward.
· Especially, if they once attended the church you are in.
▪ They are going plant negative seeds in your mind against the pastor.
▪ Before you know it you will be start being negative toward the pastor and the ministry of the church.
▪ You will end up leaving that church and have the chastening hand of the Lord come down on you.
o The scriptures tells us we are to separate from Christian who won’t get right.
· See Romans 16:17-18
· See Mt. 18:15-17
· See 2 Thess. 3:6
ð So, we need to forget Past Sheep.
o We have looked at some “Things In The Past That We Need To Forget”
· We need to forget Past Sins
· We need to forget Past Successes
· We need to forget Past Sorrows
· We need to forget Past Slights
· We need to forget Past Shepherds
· We need to forget Past Sheep
o My friend is there something that you need to forget, put in the past.
· Is there something that is keeping you from going forward.
▪ Keeping you from serving – reaching forth
▪ Something that has taken your eye off the “…prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”
▪ Whatever it is won’t you come today to this old fashion altar, leave it, and put it behind.
“Things You Can Lose”
a Text: Mark 8:36-37
o The Word of God tells us that a person can lose their soul.
· Man is made up of a body, soul, and spirit.
§ See Gen. 2:7
o The scriptures tell us when a person dies.
· The body is return to the ground and becomes dust.
· The spirit goes back to God.
· The soul is eternal and either goes to heaven or hell.
o We know that the soul has a bodily shape
· See Rev. 6:9-11 –
§ Must have been the souls of them that were slain wearing the robes
· See Luke 16 – Rich man died “And in hell he lift up his eyes being in torments,…” (Luke 16:23)
§ As you read down through that passage you see that this rich man’s soul had a memory and all its five senses.
o My friend if you are here today and have never received Jesus Christ by faith into your heart believing Christ died for your sins, was buried and rose again the third to save you from going to a sinner’s hell.
· Then your eternal soul will end up where that rich man’s soul is today – in a literal lake of fire for time and eternity.
o It will be too late to try and make an exchange for your soul.
· Your soul will be lost for all of eternity in a lake of fire.
o Right now while you are alive is the time to make the exchange.
· Repent of your sins, ask God to forgive you for your sins and receive Christ by faith into heart believing His shed sinless blood alone is what paid for everyone of your sins past, present and future.
o Praise God if you are already saved, born again, child of God then you can never lose your eternal soul.
· You are eternally saved.
§ You cannot lose your salvation.
o Scriptures On Eternal Security:
· See Eph. 4:30
· See Phil. 1:6
· See John 10:27-30
· See 1 Timothy 1:12
· See John 3:16
· Romans 8:35-39
o However, even though the Christian cannot lose his salvation there are still some things the scriptures tell us that he can lose.
· I want us to look at “Things A Christian Can Lose.”
a I. HIS TESTIMONY
o It can take a Christian a lifetime to build a testimony for Christ and all it takes is one slip up to lose it.
o Of course some Christians testimony only extends as far as the church walls.
· They come in on Sunday and act so pious and the rest of the week they live for the world, the flesh, and the devil.
o We know that Lot lost his testimony because notice how his son-in laws reacted when he tried to warn them of the coming destruction.
· See Genesis 19:14 – “mocked”
§ They laughed at him.
o This is a similar reaction a saved person gets when they try to witness to the lost after they have been living an ungodly life.
o We see King David lost his testimony for committing adultery with Bathsheba and having her husband murdered.
· See 2 Samuel 12:14
o We saw how John Mark lost his testimony with the Apostle Paul for a while after deserting Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey.
· When Paul and Barnabas were set to start their second missionary journey Barnabas wanted to take John Mark along.
· Notice contention that this caused between Paul and Barnabas.
§ See Acts 15:37-40.
· It took a while but John Mark eventually regained his testimony with the Apostle Paul.
§ But I am sure the relationship they once had was not the same.
§ See 2 Timothy 4:11 – This was written at the end of Paul’s life just before he was to be beheaded in Rome.
o Personal Example –
· Pastor who committs adultery
o The unsaved are watching you closely waiting for you slip up.
· In one instance you can bring reproach upon your self, your family, and the cause of Christ.
o Don’t have the prideful attitude “it could never happen to me or I would never do that.”
· The word God warns us “Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.” (1 Cor. 10:12)
a So, the Christian can lose His Testimony.
a Number II – the Christian can lose -
a II. HIS REWARD
o See I Cor. 3:10-15
o 2 John 8
· Things done through the Lord will earn rewards that remain, things done through self will be burned.
§ I believe a lot that goes on in the name of Christ will burned up at the Judgment Seat of Christ.
§ Examples – Mega churches
o Christians that lose rewards –
· See Romans 16:17-18
· See Romans 14:13 – Christians who are a stumbling block to other Christians.
§ Especially, Christians who have been saved for many years to newly saved Christians
· See 2 Thess. 3:6
· See Phil 3:16-19 – Enemies of the Cross, Apostle Paul talking Christians
· See 2 Tim. 3:1-5 – Apostle Paul talking about the church.
a So, the Christian can lose His Reward.
a Number III – the Christian can lose -
a III. JOY OF HIS SALVATION
o See Psalm 51:12
· David had lost the joy of his salvation.
§ His sweet fellowship with the Lord because of his sins of adultery and murder.
· That is exactly what happens when you sin.
§ You break fellowship with the Lord.
· You lose the joy that comes as a result of your fellowship with God.
§ The reason being is that sin separates the believer from God.
§ You don’t lose your salvation but you do lose the joy of walking with Him and talking with Him.
· We saw this with Adam and Eve in garden when they sinned against God.
§ They hid themselves and became afraid of God.
· It is similar to when you have done something to offend a friend.
§ The joy of that friendship is taken away.
o You see God has feelings often times we act in such away that grieves Him.
· See Eph. 4:30
§ Grieve = To offend; to displease; to provoke.
o The word of God tells us that our prayer life will suffer as a result of sin.
· Psalm 66:18 – “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:”
o How do we restore the joy of our salvation.
· See Psalm 51:1-4
· Follow David example:
§ Confess (Acknowledge)
§ Ask God for His mercy and forgiveness
· Claim God’s promise in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
a So, the Christian can lose the joy of his salvation.
a Number IV – the Christian can lose –
a IV. HIS MIND
o See Philippians 4:6-7
· Notice vs. 7, “…shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus”
§ I believe the inference is that a Christian can lose their mind.
o I believe the Christian can do this by letting the cares and worries of this old world consume them.
· Fill their hearts and minds with worry and fear.
· The scriptures tells us in Matthew 13:22, “care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word,”
o However, I believe the Christian can prevent this from happening if they would follow God’s prescription in v. 6 of Philippians 4.
o My friend that fear and worry is of the devil not the Lord.
· The word of God reminds us that “…God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” (2 Tim. 1:7)
o We have looked at four things that the Christian can lose.
· I. HIS TESTIMONY
· II. HIS REWARD
· III. JOY OF HIS SALVATION
· IV. HIS MIND
o But praise God the Christian cannot lose his salvation.
· That he is eternally secure in the hand of Almighty God.
o If you are here today, where will your eternal soul spend eternity.
· We saw from the scriptures it will be one or two places.
§ Either heaven or hell.
· The choice is yours
· Right now, my friend if you would like that eternal security we talked about
§ Won’t you not come and receive Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour.
§ By repenting of your sins, asking God to forgive you of your sins, and receiving Jesus Christ into your heart by faith believing that Christ died for your sins, was buried and rose the third day to save your soul from going to hell.
“Seven Ways To Shorten Your Life”
ð Text: Proverbs 10:27
o Today, much emphasis is put on ways one can length their period of time on this earth.
o Most of them have to do with maintenance of the human body.
o Some of the recommendations are –
· Not to smoke
· Not to drink alcoholic beverages.
· Get plenty of rest.
· Exercise regularly
· Eat a healthy diet, less meat and more fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains, no processed sugar.
o While these recommendations are important, they leave out the most important factor of all which is a person’s relationship with God.
o Our verse tells us “The fear of the LORD prolongeth days”.
· The person who fears the Lord is promised to have his days upon this earth extended.
· The Bible tells us the “wages of sin is death”.
· Sin takes its toll on the human body lessens your days on this earth.
· However, a person who fears the Lord will be less likely to sin because he fears what the Lord will do to him.
o We want to see from the Word of God “Seven Ways To Shorten Your Life” and as a result hopefully avoid them.
ð I. YOU CAN SHORTEN YOUR LIFE BY DISOBEDIENCE
o The men who disobeyed God and looked into the ark shortened their lives.
· The Lord’s command – Numbers 4:17-20.
· Disobedience – I Samuel 6:19.
ð II. YOU CAN SHORTEN YOUR LIFE BY DISHONESTY
o See Jeremiah 17:11
o Achan brought death to himself and his family by dishonesty.
· See Joshua 7:19-21, 24-26.
ð III. YOU CAN SHORTEN YOUR LIFE BY REBELLION
o Korah shortened his life by rebellion.
· See Numbers 16:1-2,31-33.
o Hananiah shortened his life by rebellion.
· See Jeremiah 28:15-17.
ð IV. YOU CAN SHORTEN YOUR LIFE BY HARDENING YOUR NECK (STUBBORNNESS)
o See Proverbs 29:1
o Stubbornness has shortened the lives of many people.
· Of the generation that came out Egypt all died in the wilderness except Joshua and Caleb because of being stiffed neck and rebellious.
ð V. YOU CAN SHORTEN YOUR LIFE BY LYING TO GOD.
o Ananias and Sapphira shortened their lives by lying to God.
· See Acts 5:1-10.
ð VI. YOU CAN SHORTEN YOUR LIFE LIVING AFTER THE FLESH
o See Romans 8:13.
o Living after the flesh means doing what the sinful old nature desires.
o This has shortened the lives of many people.
ð VII. YOU CAN SHORTEN YOUR LIFE BY NOT JUDGING YOURSELF.
o See I Cor. 11:28-32
o The Word of God asks in Ecclesiastes 7:17, “why shouldest thou die before thy time?”
o The answer is if you don’t want to die before your time then –
· Don’t be
· Stubborn, Full of lies,
· Living after the flesh
· And failing to judge yourself.
· Instead put your trust completely in the Lord Jesus Christ and let Him make you –
· One who lives after the Spirit and judges himself.
Text: Proverbs 27:6
Ø What we have contrasted in our verse is the difference between a faithful friend and an enemy.
Ø A faithful friend will sometimes will do or say something to us that will be unpleasant and described in our verse as a wound.
o However, the motive behind the faithful friend's action is not one of hurt but help.
o A faithful friend will point out things about ourselves that may not be pleasant to hear but will help you in the long run.
o That is exactly what a pastor does with his preaching.
o He rebukes his hearers sometimes because he a faithful friend.
o Oh, it may smart sometimes but if he really loves his people then he will do it when it is needed to help his folks grow in the things of the Lord.
o The pastor is to give you both good and the bad according to the Word of God.
o He is to give you the whole counsel of God.
Ø On the other hand someone who is your enemy will try to deceive you that they are your friend by giving you a kiss and hug.
o You know that type that I mean always smiling in your face while they are stabbing you in the back.
o Our churches are filled with people like that.
Ø Our study is entitled "Deceitful Kisses"
o I want us to look at some kisses in the Bible that were meant to deceive their recipients.
I. The Kiss of an Adulteress - Proverbs 7:13
Ø Read Proverbs 7:10-23
§ v. 13 - The adulteress gives the man a kiss.
§ She reassures him everything is going to be all right.
§ v. 14 - She has even been to church and prayed about it, paid her vows.
§ She says that she is right with God.
§ v. 15 - She tells him that she has looking for a man like him.
§ vs. 16-17 - She tells him that she has made everything ready for their night of romance and love.
§ v. 18 - She tells him "Baby, we are going to have a good time"
§ vs. 19-20 - She tells him that we don't have to rush because my husband is away on business and won't be home for sometime.
§ v. 21 - She tells him everything that he wants to hear.
§ vs. 22-23 - Shows the man was totally deceived and took the bait.
§ The truth is that everything will not be all right.
§ The wages of sin is death.
§ Adultery brings destruction
§ Read verses 24-27 -Shows the result of falling for the deceit of the adulteress' kiss.
II. The Kiss of Absalom - 2 Samuel 15:5
Ø Read 2 Samuel 15:1-6
§ vs. 2-3 - Absalom is appearing to show genuine concern for the people of Israel.
§ v. 4 - Absalom assures the people if he were in charge that things would be done fairly.
§ Indicating that he father David is unfair in his dealings.
§ vs. 5-6 - Provides the truth in the matter.
§ Absalom's motive was to steal the hearts of the people.
§ To get rid of his father and become king of Israel.
III. The Kiss of Laban - Genesis 29:13
Ø Read Genesis 29:9-14
§ Jacob sent by his father, Isaac to his mother, Rebekah’s brother Laban to find a wife - See Genesis 28:1-2.
§ vs. 9-11 - Rachel and Jacob meet.
§ v. 11 - Jacob greets Rachel with a kiss.
§ After all they are cousins.
§ v. 12 - Rachel runs home and tells Laban her father that she has met his sister's son or his nephew.
§ v. 13 - Laban runs to meet Jacob.
§ He greets Jacob with an embraced and a kiss and takes him home.
§ So, it appears that Laban is happy to see Jacob.
§ vs. 15-18 - Laban uses Jacob.
§ Laban deceives Jacob into thinking if he works for Laban seven years that he will get to marry Rachel who he loves.
§ Laban tricks him with giving him Leah his oldest daughter.
§ Jacob ends up serving Laban another seven years for Rachel.
IV. The Kiss of Joab - 2 Samuel 20: 9-10
§ Read 2 Samuel 20:9
§ Joab greets Amasa.
§ He inquires about his health and calls him brother.
§ Joab makes like he going kiss Amasa.
§ So, on the surface it does not appear that Joab is upset with Amasa for not assembling the men Judah at the appointed time that he was ordered by King David.
§ Read 2 Samuel 20:10
§ While Joab is appearing to kiss him, he stabs Amasa in the fifth rib and kills him.
§ Christians do the same thing in churches.
§ They smile in your face, greet you with an embrace and tell you what a great message that was you preached.
§ At the same time stab you in the back with their wicked and unruly tongue.
V. The Kiss of Job - Job 31:27
o Here in Chapter 31, Job is defending his integrity with God.
o Read Job 31:24-28
o Job is saying if he had placed his confidence in gold.
o Rejoiced in what he had accomplished.
o If he had given himself credit for all that he had accomplished then he has committed iniquity for denying the God above.
o And should be judged and punished for it.
o Read Job 31:27
o What Job is saying in v. 27 is that we can deceive ourselves into thinking what we have obtained we did it without God.
o Then we become so prideful and think we are so great as illustrated by kissing one's hand.
o In other words having the attitude, "I am so wonderful, so marvelous, so great!"
o So, the deceitful kiss here would be in deceiving yourself that you are something great without God and you are not! – See John 15:5
VI. The Kiss of Judas - Matthew 26:48-49
- Mark 14:45-44
- Luke 22:47-48
Ø The most tragic deceitful kiss of them all.
o The kiss of Judas was so suppose to appear as if Judas loved Jesus and was a friend of his,
o One of his disciples.
o Not to be afraid to be associated with Him.
o The kiss of Judas was a kiss of betrayal.
o The kiss was a sign to identify Jesus to those who were coming to arrest him.
o Very tragic indeed.
o Judas kissed the Door to Heaven and died and went to hell.
Ø We have seen the deceitful kisses of the enemy and what they can do to deceive their recipients.
Ø The kiss of the adulteress to bring a man to destruction and down to hell.
Ø The kiss of Absalom to steal the heart of people and dethrone his father, King David.
Ø The kiss of Laban to trick Jacob into working for him 14 years and prospering greatly at his hands.
Ø The kiss of Joab that led to murder.
Ø The kiss of Job as a result of pride.
Ø The kiss of Judas that caused our Lord his life and sent Judas to hell.
"Things To Glory In"
Text: Jeremiah 9:23-24
"Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD."
-Definition: To glory in something means to praise, and honor, to exalt with joy, to rejoice over.
-Today, people glory in many things.
-i.e., Their achievements - noble peace prize, Pulitzer prize, academy awards (Oscars), Grammy Awards, Emmy Awards, Miss America, Miss Universe, etc.
-Sports – Olympics – Gold Medal, Stanley Cup - Hockey; Super Bowl - Football; World Series - Baseball; NBA championship - Basketball.
-Education - Ivy League Colleges - Harvard, Yale, Princeton; Rhodes Scholar.
-Position - Doctor, Lawyer, President, CEO, Congressman,
-Wealth - Billionaire - Microsoft's Bill Gates.
-Our society in general has tendency to elevate and defy man.
-i.e., The Pope; Mother Theresa; Jessie Jackson, JFK & Kennedy Family; Princess Diana; Billy Graham; Martin Luther King; Bill Clinton.
-Our society glories in man's so-called advancements.
-But the Bible tells in Psalm 39:5 - "verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity."
-The so-called Bible Fundamentalist crowd is guilty of glorying in the things of man.
-i.e., The number of souls a person wins; The size of a work (how many a church is running on a Sunday); The physical size of the church facilities; The titles that men hold.
-It is no longer an honor to be called pastor now everyone has the title Dr. So and So.
-All you have to do is pick up one of these Bible Fundamentalist periodicals and it nothing but a "brag rag"!!!
-i.e. "We have the largest Sunday School in America".
-"We had over 5,000 professions of faiths and baptized over 3,000"
-"Come to this conference because Dr. So and So the world's greatest evangelist will be there"
-And it just goes on and on and on.
-What does God think about all of this?
-Jesus makes it very clear what God thinks about all of this in Luke 16:15,
"...for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God."
-In our study I want us to look at according to the Word of God, things God wants us to "Glory In."
I. "Glory in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ" - Galatians 6:14.
"But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world."
-The Apostle Paul tells us we are to glory in the cross of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
-Paul speaks of the cross as the finished work of Christ for the salvation of the mankind and its affect on the Christian.
-Affect on the Christian:
*The believer is crucified with Christ in the present.
"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me."
*The world is crucified to the believer for it is dead and lies under the wrath of God.
*The believer is crucified to the world, for he has been ruined in relation to it.
**Jesus said in John 15:18-19 - "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you."
**There is a hymn that goes -"This world is not my home, I'm just a passing through. My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue."
*And the believer is a savor of death unto death (2 Cor. 16) to those who love the world (2 Tim. 4:10 - Demas).
*The believer smells like death to this unsaved of this world because he reminds them of their eternal destiny, the second death - "And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death."
-Why should the Christian Glory in the cross.
-Because the cross is what the believer is to preach.
-It is the power of God unto salvation.
-1 Cor. 1:17-18 - "For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God."
-Because it brings reconciliation with God for both the Jew and the Gentile.
-Eph. 2:13-16 - "But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:"
-Because peace with God is made for the sinner.
-The sinner is no longer an enemy of God.
-Col. 1:20 - "And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven."
II. Glory in our infirmities - 2 Corinthians 11:30
-The Apostle Paul said 2 Cor. 11:30 - "If I must needs glory, I will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities."
-Then Paul tells us why we should glory in our infirmities in 2 Cor. 12:7-10.
-v. 9 - "the power of Christ may rest upon me"
-v. 10 - "for when I am weak, then am I strong"
-This is certainly counter to the philosophy of the world.
-The Word of God tells us the weaker that you are in the flesh the more Christ shall be able to use you.
-Why? - Because self, the flesh, the old man is out of the way.
-This ties in with what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 1:25-29 - "Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence."
-Christian, Glory in your infirmities!
-So, the power of Christ will be able to rest upon you! Amen!!
-Christ does not want you to glory in your vile flesh.
-He does not want you to do things for Him in your flesh.
-He wants you to let Him live through you!!!
III. Understanding and knowing the Lord - Jeremiah 9:23-24
-" But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me,..."
-Note in Jeremiah 9:23, God tells us what not to "glory in" - "Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches:"
-The unsaved glory in their wisdom, their might, and their riches.
-According to the Word of God the unsaved lack spiritual understanding and knowledge.
-1 Cor. 2:11-14 - "For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."
-Why should the believer glory in spiritual understanding and knowledge?
-Because he has the truth, the Word of God according to John 17:17 - " Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth."
As a result of having the truth the believer is free from sin and the bondage of the world.
-Jesus said in John 8:32 - " And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
-Why glory in the spiritual understanding and knowledge?
-Because it gives you wisdom that the world does not possess.
-As a result you have more understanding than the great minds of this world.
-The Psalmist declared in Psalm 119:99-100 - "I have more understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation. I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts."
-Why glory in spiritual understanding and knowledge?
-So, you can reap the benefits that the Lord has to offer.
-Jer. 9:24, the Lord says - "I am the Lord which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth:"
-I do not know about you but I want to reap all the Lord's lovingkindness and righteousness that I can get.
-Further, I want to avoid the Lord's judgment.
-How do you do that?
-By doing things that please God?
-You can only know what pleases God by having spiritual knowledge and understanding.
-In our brief study we have seen three things we are to "Glory In".
1) The cross of Christ
2) Our infirmities
3) Spiritual knowledge and understanding
-My dear friend the Bible is very clear about what you and I are not to "Glory In" and what we are to "Glory In".
-The bottom line is that we are not to glory in the things of the flesh.
-Do not glory in what you did in the flesh.
-Remember, what the Bible says in 1 Peter 1:24 - " For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:"
-We are to glory in the things of the Spirit, the things God does through us.
-Jesus said in John 6:63 - " It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life."
-My friend let me ask you - "What are you glorying in?"
-Galatians 6:8, reminds us that , " For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting."
-The scriptures are very clear.
-If you glory in the flesh then you will reap corruption.
-If you glory in things of God then you will reap life everlasting.
“The Tradition of Men”
Text: Mark 7:1-13
è We will look at three things concerning the “tradition of men.”
q The root of the tradition of men in verses 1-7.
q The reason of the tradition of men in verses 8-12.
q The result of the tradition of men verse 13.
I. THE ROOT OR THE SOURCE OF THE TRADITION OF MEN
è This should be no surprise the root of the tradition of men, is man himself.
è Read v. 1 – “Then came together unto him the Pharisees, and certain of the scribes, which came from Jerusalem.”
q We see in verse 1, the root or source specifically the religious crowd – Pharisees and scribes.
q Today’s equivalent would be a hierarchy of a religious organization.
q I.e. – Roman Catholics – Pope, college of cardinals, bishops, priests.
q We see in verse 1, the religious crowd getting together to intimidate a Bible Believers.
§ In this case it was none other than the Lord Jesus Christ and His disciples.
q Nothing has changed today.
q Various religious groups are always getting together and trying to intimidate Bible Believers.
§ I.e. Trying to get ordinances passed which would prohibit preaching on the street or passing out gospel tracts.
§ I.e. Prohibit the open display of a Bible on someone’s desk at work.
§ I.e. Prohibit the use of conference rooms during lunch time for prayer and Bible Study.
q Beware when the religious crowd gets together usually to attack Bible Believers and the inspired, inerrant, preserved words of God, AV 1611, King James Bible.
q These groups often come under the heading of a Council.
§ I.e. The National Council of Churches.
· Promote modern Bible Perversions.
q What is interesting most of the time in the Bible when a council is mentioned it has a bad connotation.
è Read Verse 2 – “And when they saw some of his disciples eat bread with defiled, that is to say, with unwashen, hands, they found fault.”
è Notice – This crowd comes for one sole purpose and that is to find fault, with Jesus and his disciples.
q “…they found fault”
è Read Verse 3 – “For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, except they wash their hands oft, eat not, holding the tradition of the elders.”
q Verse 3 tells us that the religious crowd finds fault or judges, Jesus’ disciples action based on manmade laws and not the Word of God
§ “holding the tradition of the elders”
è Read Verse 4 – “And when they come from the market, except they wash, they eat not. And many other things there be, which they have received to hold, as the washing of cups, and pots, brasen vessels, and of tables.”
q The foundation and majority of this crowd’s belief was based on the traditions of man and not the Word of God.
§ “And many other things there be, which they have received to hold,”
q Does this sound familiar?
q Does this sound like anyone you know today?
§ I.e., Roman Catholics, Mormons, JWs, 7th Day Adventists, Christian Scientists, Church of Christ, Moslems, and let’s not forget the liberal Protestants.
è Read Verse 5 – “Then the Pharisees and scribes asked him, Why walk not thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands? “
q Again notice the Pharisees and scribes line of questioning was not based on the Word of God or Bible Tradition but the tradition of man.
§ “the tradition of the elders”
è Read Verse 6 – “He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.”
q Jesus tells us the root of the problem is the heart of man.
q The Bible says about the heart, “The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked:…”
q You see the problem with the heretic is not what he is teaching
§ The problem is his heart.
§ He has rejected the truth.
§ The Bible tells us in Galatians 5:20, that heresies is a work of the flesh.
q Jesus tells us in John 3:19, “men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.”
q The religious crowd uses the name of Jesus a lot in what they do.
§ But in reality they are only giving Jesus lip service.
§ As Jesus said here in v. 6, “…This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.”
q Mt. 7:21-23 tells us, “7:21: Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
7:22: Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
7:23: And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”
è Read Verse 7 – “Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.”
q Jesus tells us those who follow and teach the commandments of men instead of the Word of God, their worship is in “vain”
q In other words, their worship is “worthless” of “no profit”, “nothing.”
q So, the root of the tradition of men is “man” himself.
II. THE REASON FOR THE TRADITIONS OF MEN (VS. 8-12)
è Read Verse 8 – “For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do.”
q “laying aside the commandment of God”
q Instead of making the Word of God as his final authority, man makes up his own rules & sets himself up as the final authority.
q This is exactly what Satan did with Eve in the garden.
q See Genesis 3:4-5 – “3:4: And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 3:5: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.”
q In other words, Satan was telling Eve, “Who needs God and God’s rule?” “Eve you can be like God and make up your own rules to go by.”
q You see by man doing this when he looks into his traditions and commandments instead of the Word of God, then he doesn’t look that bad after all.
q You and I hear it all the time when we try to witness to someone about being saved.