Sunday, May 24, 2009
A. In Sunday School a few weeks ago, while teaching on the meaning of the Peace Offering in Leviticus 3, I made this observation: It has been estimated that in the last 5,600 years there have been 14,531 wars and only 292 years of world peace. The hearts of people worldwide long for peace! People have talked a lot about peace over the centuries, but they have experienced precious little of it.
B. This Memorial Day, our nation will once again honor our war dead with the placement of flowers at the Monument of the Unknown Soldier. What a tremendous price has been paid for the freedoms that we enjoy today! I made these statements last year but they need to be repeated this year:
1. In all of the American wars, either by our country or within our country, over 45,000,00 men and women have served in wartime with app. 1,175,000 war dead and app. 1,500,000 wounded in action. That is a tremendous number of young lives that have been given and forever changed while affording us the freedom that we now enjoy.
2. Freedom in a privilege, not a right! There are many in this country who enjoy the freedoms while misusing them. We do not have the freedom to do wrong in this land. We do not have the freedom to live here and defame this land. America has had some sordidness in its history and still is not a perfect land, but it is my country and I say, “Love it or leave it.”
C. Ecclesiastes 3 says:
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: 2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; 3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; 7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
1. There are times when it is Kill or be Killed
2. There are times when it is War or Slavery
D. War and Peace are two sides to a revolving door with neither side being open permanently. War is necessary! War is a way of life! The first mention of war is in Genesis 14:2 and the last in Revelation 19:19.
1. God taught David to War - Psalms 144:1 Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:
2. God taught Israel to War - Judges 3:1-2 Now these are the nations which the LORD left, to prove Israel by them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan; 16217 Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof;
3. We must teach our children to war! Judges 3:1-2 Now these are the nations which the LORD left, to prove Israel by them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan; 2 Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof;
E. One day all wars will end. Isaiah 2:4 And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
F. But, until then, war has been, is, and will be a way of life.
1. Until Then We Will Have To Fight Our National Enemies - Ecclesiastes 3:8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. (The enemies of peace understand only one thing: strength! You cannot negotiate peace from a position of weakness! As long as sinful man is in control, wars will be fought. Just before the Rapture, there are wars and rumours of wars… For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.)
Exodus 15:3 The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.
Psalms 24:8 Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle.
Psalms 45:3 Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O most mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty.
Revelation 19:11-15 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. 12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. 13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. 15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
2. Until Then We Will Have To Fight Our Flesh - Romans 7:23-25 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? 25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. (Until we get a new body at the coming of the Lord, our old nature will not be eradicated! Our Lord Jesus Christ will deliver us from the body of this death.)
Galatians 2:20 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.
Luke 9:23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
3. Until Then We Will Have To Fight Satanic Foes - Ephesians 6:12-13 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 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. (We live in perilous times with our enemy active while the church is asleep! He devours us while we devour each other. “Withstand” means to take a punch. Do not think that Satan is either retreating or giving up. One day, he will be put in the bottomless pit. One day, he will be cast into the lake of fire but—until then—we are in a battle for our very lives.)
1 Peter 5:8-9 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: 9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
4. Until Then We Will Have To Fight The Good Fight Of Faith - 1 Corinthians 16:13 Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.
Ezekiel 22:25 There is a conspiracy of her prophets in the midst thereof, like a roaring lion ravening the prey; they have devoured souls; they have taken the treasure and precious things; they have made her many widows in the midst thereof.
Jeremiah 5:30-31 A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land; 31 The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof? (God’s men have always been fighters! God’s people have always had to fight! Until He comes, we are commanded to “fight the good fight of faith.”)
1 Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
Conclusion: One day, praise the Lord, all fighting will be over. I long for that day when we meet Christ in the air and peace will eternally reign for the child of God.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Galatians 3:6-9; Genesis 22:1-19
A. In these verses, we find the amazing faith of Abraham mentioned. Verse 6 says, “Abraham believed God!” This was no small act of faith that Abraham exercised in Genesis when God gave to him the promise of the “Seed.” When we get to Genesis 22, we find the depth of his faith in the testing of the sacrifice of Isaac.
B. People today normally say, “Oh, I believe.” Do they believe as Abraham believed or do they believe as the devils believe in the Book of James? The devils also believe and tremble! This tells me that simply fear of judgment and hell are not enough to get one to Heaven! Saving faith is much more than fear! Saving faith is just that, faith!
C. Let us see the faith of Abraham for a moment:
Hebrews 11:17-19 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, 18 Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called: 19 Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.
D. God promised Abraham a son named Isaac through which the godly line would continue until the “Seed” should come which was Christ. The Old Testament saint knew that the “Lamb of God” would one day come to take away (not simply atone) for the sins of the world. Isaac had no children, therefore, he must continue to live in order to bring about the accomplishment of the “seed of the woman.”
E. This meant that if Abraham sacrificed his son, then God would have to bring him back to life again. What faith!
F. Now that we have seen the “Faith of Abraham,” let us look at the “Family of Abraham.”
Galatians 3:7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
1. Saving faith is in the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, not in the fear of judgment and hell.
2. Saving faith is the acceptance of the finished work of Christ as the only means of sacrifice and salvation for the sinner. It is trusting Christ and Christ alone! The Galatian believers had been bewitched into thinking otherwise.
G. I want to look at the “Gospel preached unto Abraham” for a while tonight.
Hebrews 11:17-19 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, 18 Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called: 19 Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.
Turn to Genesis 22 with me.
1. Pre-determination Plan – vs. 2 “offer him” - Acts 2:23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:
1 Peter 1:20 Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
2. Pre-determined Person – vs. 2 “thine only son” - John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
Matthew 17:5 While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.
3. Pre-determined Place - Genesis 22:2-4 And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of. 3 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him. 4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.
Luke 23:33 And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left.
4. Pre-determined Price – vs. 2 “burnt offering” - Leviticus 17:11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.
Hebrews 9:22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.
5. Pre-determined Process – vs. 3 “clave the wood” - Galatians 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
Philippians 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
6. Pre-determined Pact – vs. 6 “both of them together” - John 8:29 And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.
Isaiah 53:10-11 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. 11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.
7. Pre-determined Path – vs. 6 “the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son” - John 19:17 And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha:
Colossians 2:14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
8. Pre-determined Provision – vs. 8 “God will provide himself”- 1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
Matthew 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
9. Pre-determined Propitiation – vs. 13 “Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son” - 1 John 2:2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
Hebrews 9:26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.
10. Pre-determined Promise – vs. 19 “So Abraham returned unto his young men” - 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
2 Samuel 22:4
A. We have seen that the Lord is worthy of or praise because of His excellent name, His wondrous works, His exceeding power, His matchless grace, infinite wisdom, and wonderful Word. His name is truly wonderful, His works marvelous, His power beyond our imagination, His grace is truly matchless, His wisdom past finding out, and His Word both perfect and eternal.
B. Tonight I want to look at another aspect of the worthiness of our praise for the Lord. The Majesty of God! One song writer wrote these words, “O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is thy name in all the earth!”
MAJESTY - The greatness and dignity of a sovereign. The sovereignty and power of God. Supreme authority or power. A royal personage. Royal dignity of bearing or aspect; grandeur. Stately splendor; magnificence, as of style or character.
C. When I think of “Majesty,” I think of royalty, power, wealth, and social status. Not long ago, there was some controversy because Michele Obama “touched” the Queen of England. Queen Elizabeth has been the reigning monarch of England for many years and is both loved and respected throughout the world.
D. There is One to whom she will bow and confess that He is Lord to the glory of God the Father. The Bible declares that God is not only above but “Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come.”
E. As Dr. S.M. Lockridge put it, “He is indescribable!” So, forgive me tonight for my finite mind, limited vocabulary, and sinful personage cannot explain or describe His majesty!
Psalms 104:1 Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty.
Psalms 145:5 I will speak of the glorious honour of thy majesty, and of thy wondrous works.
Psalms 145:12 To make known to the sons of men his mighty acts, and the glorious majesty of his kingdom.
1. The Majesty of God’s Sovereignty - 1 Chronicles 29:11 Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all.
Philippians 2:10-11 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
a. The Angels Worship - Revelation 4:8 And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.
b. The Devils Worship - Luke 8:28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not.
c. The Saved Worship - Revelation 7:9-10 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; 10 And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.
d. The Creatures Worship - Revelation 5:13 And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.
2. The Majesty of God’s Authority - Job 37:22-23 Fair weather cometh out of the north: with God is terrible majesty. 23 Touching the Almighty, we cannot find him out: he is excellent in power, and in judgment, and in plenty of justice: he will not afflict.
a. Nature Is Subject To Him - Matthew 8:27 But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him! Luke 10:17 And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.
b. Devils Are Subject To Him - Luke 10:17 And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.
James 2:19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.
c. Governments Are Subject To Him - Ephesians 1:20-21 Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, 21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:
3. The Majesty of God’s Glory - Job 40:10 Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty.
a. Incomprehensible Glory – Exodus 33:18-20 And he said, I beseech thee, shew me thy glory. 19 And he said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew mercy. 20 And he said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live.
Isaiah 57:15 For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
b. Incomparable Glory - Isaiah 6:1 In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.
c. Unapproachable Glory - 1 Timothy 6:16 Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.
4. The Majesty Of God’s Power - Psalms 93:1 The LORD reigneth, he is clothed with majesty; the LORD is clothed with strength, wherewith he hath girded himself: the world also is stablished, that it cannot be moved.
a. Power To Shake – Isaiah 2:19 And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth.
b. Power To Save – Hebrews 7:25 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.
Psalms 21:5 His glory is great in thy salvation: honour and majesty hast thou laid upon him.
c. Power To Supply – Psalms 23:1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
Philippians 4:19 But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
Jude 25 To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.
A. I have enjoyed spending a little extra time this year preaching on Calvary, the resurrection, and some things related to them. I want to share with you this morning the ultimate reason for the gospel.
B. Verse 19 says, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” If this is all that there is, then we have wasted our lives serving a dead Christ.
1. First of all, I want to say that living a Christian life is worth it in any case and our lives are not wasted! I had rather be an old time Christian than anything I know.
2. Secondly, there is hope after death and what a wonderful prospect it is. Those who deny Christ have not salvation and, therefore, no hope. The Bible says that we are not to sorrow “as those who have no hope.”
2 Peter 3:3-4 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.
C. Our Lord said, “I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” Our cry this morning should be the echo of John the Beloved’s on the Isle of Patmos: “Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.”
D. The hour is near! We are six “days” past the creation and the seventh “day” of the Millennium is almost upon us.
1. It is eminent (Brand New Feeling In The Air) - 1 Thessalonians 5:1-2 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
2. It is encouraging (Hard times almost over forever) - 1 Thessalonians 4:18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
3. It is exciting (Just think of stepping on shore and finding it Heaven; of touching a hand and finding it God; of breathing new air and finding it celestial; of waking up in Glory and finding it home!) - Revelation 22:20 He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.
E. Many deny the Rapture but it is found in type throughout the Bible:
1. Manifested In Enoch - Genesis 5:24 And Enoch walked with God: and he [was] not; for God took him.
2. Manifested In Lot - Genesis 19:22 Haste thee, escape thither; for I cannot do any thing till thou be come thither. Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar.
3. Manifested In Elijah - 2 Kings2:11 And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.
4. Manifested In Paul - 2 Corinthians 12:2 I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.
5. Manifested In John - Revelation 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter. And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.
F. Jesus Christ died for our sins and rose again for our justification. He is coming to take us home! WE HAVE HOPE!
WHERE OUR HOPE IS NOT FOUND
1. Our Hope Is Not In This World - 1 Corinthians 15:19 If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.
2. Our Hope Is Not In America - Isaiah 30:2-3 That walk to go down into Egypt, and have not asked at my mouth; to strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh, and to trust in the shadow of Egypt! 3 Therefore shall the strength of Pharaoh be your shame, and the trust in the shadow of Egypt your confusion.
3. Our Hope Is Not In Our Pocket - 1 Timothy 6:17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;
4. Our Hope Is Not In Religion - Acts 26:5 Which knew me from the beginning, if they would testify, that after the most straitest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee.
5. Our Hope Is Not In Self - Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
6. Our Hope Is In Christ - Colossians 1:27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
THINGS EXPECTANCE SHOULD PRODUCE
1. Expectancy Should Produce Watchfulness - Mark 13:34, 37 For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch. 37 And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.
2. Expectancy Should Produce Comfort – 1 Thessalonians 4:17-18 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
3. Expectancy Should Produce Abiding – 1 John 2:28 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.
4. Expectancy Should Produce Patience - James 5:7-8 Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
5. Expectancy Should Produce Service – 2 Timothy 4:1-2 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
6. Expectancy Should Produce Purity – 1 John 3:3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.
IN THESE FOUR VERSES WE FIND ALL THAT WE NEED IN LIGHT OF HIS COMING!
1. We Find The Promise Of A Peace – “let not your heart be troubled” Notice with me that the word “heart” is singular. This is not a promise to the church corporately, but to the saint individually.
Psalms 29:11 The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace.
Isaiah 26:3-4 Thou wilt keep [him] in perfect peace, [whose] mind [is] stayed [on thee]: because he trusteth in thee. 4 Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH [is] everlasting strength:
Isaiah 32:17 And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever.
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
John 20:21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace [be] unto you: as [my] Father hath sent me, even so send I you.
a. A Peace That Comes From Knowing The Lord
b. A Peace That Comes From Trusting The Lord
c. A Peace That Comes From Expecting The Lord
2. We Find The Promise Of A Place – “In my Father’s house are many mansions”
1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
Isaiah 64:4 For since the beginning of the world [men] have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, [what] he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him.
Revelation 22:1-5 And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. 2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. 3 And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: 4 And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads. 5 And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever.
a. Heaven Is A Prepared Place!
b. Heaven Is A Perfect Place!
c. Heaven Is A Permanent Place!
3. We Find The Promise Of A Preparation – “I go and prepare a place for you” He placed the eternal blood on the eternal mercy seat for our eternal redemption!
a. Salvation Has A Wonderful Saviour – vs. 13 (What a wonderful Saviour He is to me!)
b. Salvation Provides A Wonderful Grace – vs. 11 (Grace: probably the most misunderstood of all doctrines! I wonder what it is about grace that confuses people. Grace is simply unmerited favor! It cannot be bought or wrought. What a wonderful thought! He loves me as I am! He loves even me!)
c. Salvation Effects A Wonderful Conversion – vs. 14 (What a wonderful change in my life has been wrought!)
d. Salvation Produces A Wonderful People – vs. 14 (The most wonderful people in all of the world!)
e. Salvation Guarantees A Wonderful Prospect – vs. 13 (I will live forever in Heaven with Him!)
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
A. One of Satan’s greatest tactics is that of confusion. There is one thing that we know for certain concerning confusion:
1 Corinthians 14:33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.
B. The Holy Ghost uses the word “bewitched” in verse one to describe the condition of the Galatian believers.
BEWITCHED - from Old English wiccian, from wicce, witch, or wicca, sorcerer. enchanted, charmed, transformed, fascinated, entranced, possessed, captivated, enthralled, beguiled, ravished, spellbound, mesmerized, enamoured, hypnotized, enraptured, under a spell.
C. Satan uses many “devices” in order to confuse both sinners and saints.
2 Corinthians 2:11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.
1. He has blinded the minds of those who believe not - 2 Corinthians 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.
Ephesians 4:14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
2. He has gotten good called evil – 2 Peter 2:2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? (Satan always attacks truth and makes it look evil.)
3. He has used the testimony of carnal believers - Romans 14:16 Let not then your good be evil spoken of: (Not to live God’s Word causes others not the believe God’s Word.)
4. He has introduced satanic versions of God’s Word – Isaiah 8:20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. (Watered down “bibles” grow anemic “Christians.”)
5. He has flooded the airways with false prophets - 2 Peter 2:3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. (Saved people thrive on the preaching of doctrinally impure and compromised preachers. Television and radio are great tools for both true and Carleton preachers.)
6. He uses shallow, ear tickling preachers - 2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; (If you do not like strong Bible preaching, just take your pick. There are churches all around where things are “smoother.”)
Isaiah 30:10 Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits:
7. He uses believes who refuse the strong meat of God’ Word - Hebrews 5:12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. (Many are comfortable with the spiritual plane that they are on and refuse to go any farther.)
8. He has reproached God’s men through sons of Belial - Ezekiel 33:32-33 And, lo, thou art unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an instrument: for they hear thy words, but they do them not. 33 And when this cometh to pass, (lo, it will come,) then shall they know that a prophet hath been among them.
3 John 9 I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. (Disassociate from those who speak against or contrary to your Pastor.)
9. He has filled the churches with “tares” - Matthew 13:25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.
1 Corinthians 2:14 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. (Churches are full of unsaved members who will not receive the truth.)
2 Timothy 3:7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
10. He has used the apostasy of the multitudes to bring about “political correctness” - 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; (We live in days where those who “buck” the philosophy of the world are labeled fundamentalist, divisive, narrow minded, non-conformists, bigots, etc. It is peer pressure to become politically correct.)
11. He has used the destruction of the family to cause believers to compromise - Matthew 10:34-36 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. (To believe right causes household division.)
SEVEN QUESTION FOUND IN THESE VERSES TO BE ANSWERED
1. Vs. 1 - Who hath bewitched you? Who are you spending time with? Who are you listening to? What are you listening to?
2. Vs. 2 – Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? How did you get saved: by works or faith?
3. Vs. 3 – Are ye so foolish? It is foolish to revert back to the Law which cannot save! It is foolish to think that we can somehow merit favor with God outside of Christ! It is foolish to think that we are good enough to go to Heaven! It is foolish to think that we deserve God’s blessings!
4. Vs. 3 - Are ye now made perfect by the flesh? Sanctified? We no longer sin? We now seek to do the perfect will of God in every aspect of our lives? We have apprehended where Paul could not?
5. Vs. 4 - Have ye suffered so many things in vain? These Galatian believers paid a high price for their confession of faith! They were persecuted for their faith in Christ.
Hebrews 11:24-27 By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; 25 Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; 26 Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward. 27 By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.
6. Vs. 5 - He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? What does your pastor teach? Does he teach you works for salvation or to keep salvation? Once again, who are you listening to?
7. Vs. 7 - Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham? Those who believe are “children of Abraham.” Abraham believed God and it was accounted unto him for righteousness. We have believed God and that is all that is necessary in order to become “righteous.”
How To Guard Against Being Bewitched
1. Stay right with God! Galatians 3:1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
John 8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. (Stay close to God and the Holy Spirit will guide you into “all truth,” not part truth and part error!)
John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
2. Make sure that you are faithful to church! Sunday School, Sunday Morning Worship, Sunday Night Service, Wednesday Night Prayer Meeting, and Revival Services! Thomas was not with the other disciples and missed the Lord! (These services are not to wear us out physically. They are to pull us out of the world for a while and saturate us with a godly surrounding where there is praying, testifying, preaching, and God’s children. To be other than faithful is to “sin willfully!” To sin willfully brings about chastening.)
1 Timothy 3:15 But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
3. Read, Study, and Believe your King James Bible! 2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
2 Peter 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
4. Listen to your Pastor’s teaching and preaching! Ephesians 4:11-16 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; 15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: 16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
Jeremiah 3:15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.
Acts 20:27 For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.
5. Learn to STAY away from those who are of contrary doctrine. Romans 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. (Some people know so much more than God! Pastors can preach this until they are “blue in the face” and some people will just smile, go home, and turn these false prophets right back on. It amazes me! I have no desire to listen to a man [or woman – Joyce Myers in particular] who do not believe this Bible, the doctrines of this Bible, and affiliate with others of the same “cut of the cloth!”)
Conclusion: The believers at Galatia were “bewitched” because of their poor spiritual condition. We live in days of confusion like the world has never known so we must beware of Satan’s devices!
Sunday, May 10, 2009
A. This story is ever so familiar to many of us because:
1. Many of us have been Prodigals at one time or another.
2. Some of us have Prodigals in our family now.
3. If you have not been a Prodigal, thank God.
4. If you do not have a Prodigal, thank God and be watchful.
B. There is story after story in the Bible of godly parents who have had children go astray. We are not perfect parents and do fail our children just as we fail God. Raising children for the Lord does not force them to make right decisions.
C. I am not trying to take all of the blame from us parents who have Prodigal children but am going to give us some hope tonight. God had two children in a perfect environment and they chose to sin. Children still have to choose the path for their lives, otherwise they become robots of our making.
D. Children raised in ungodly homes get saved and serve the Lord while children raised in godly homes sometimes chose to reject Christ. The only place that I see where Adam and Eve sinned was in the Garden of Eden and yet they lost their first born.
E. Let us look at this Prodigal’s father for a few minutes. He was a godly father with nothing evil spoken about him and yet he had one Prodigal leave while the other Prodigal stayed.
1. He realized That His Son Had The Right To Make A Choice – vs. 12 “he divided unto them his living” - (You can teach and plead, but you cannot choose.)
2. He Did Not Compromise What He Believed Or Where He Stood – vs. 13, 20 “a far country…yet a great way off” (You have to let them go and distance themselves. Continue to do what you are doing – don’t stop or let up. Give them something stable to come back to.)
3. He Never Gave Up On His Son Though He Must Have Waited A Long Time – vs. 20 “yet a great way off, his father saw him” (Stay encouraged! Give the Lord time to work.)
4. He Never Ceased To Love And Pray For His Son – vs. 20 “fell on his neck and kissed him” (As much as possible, keep the wayward child’s sin between them and the Lord.)
5. When He Saw His Son Returning, He Made An Effort To Help Him – vs. 20 “had compassion, and ran” (The wayward child will need your help and guidance.)
6. He Willing Received His Son Back When He Repented – vs. 21-22 “I have sinned…bring forth the best robe” (The wayward child will be looking for any signs of rejection during restoration.)
7. He Restored His Son To His Former Position – vs. 22 “bring the best robe…ring…shoes” (Full restoration, not partial as the son both deserved and expected.)
8. He Never Made A Difference Between His Sons – vs. 24 “for this my son” (Even though one left, they were both his sons with equal privileges.)
9. He Would Not Let Others Son Mistreat The Lost Son When He Came Home – vs. 25-32 (Stand with him or her unashamedly when they get right.)
1. Stop Blaming Yourself! There is nothing that you can do to change the situation now and the child made bad choices! They were raised better. They knew better when they chose the wrong path. Get over it because there is work to do.
2. Never cease to pray for them! Morning, noon, and night. All during the day, call their names out to God as Job did. He sacrificed for his children each day just in case they committed sin.
3. Do not compromise in order to get him or her back! Hold steady and serve the Lord. They must have a godly home to come back to one day.
4. Expect God to honor His Word and work in their hearts. You spent years teaching them the Word of God and it will not return void.
5. Do not “cut your children off.” Leave the door open for reconciliation. I understand that, under certain conditions, you have to break fellowship with them but let them know that they can get right with God and you.
6. Love them as God loves you! Forgive them as God forgives you! I am glad that He loves me in spite of my sinfulness.
7. Go on with your life! Life does not stop because they have made wrong choices and you life does not now center around them. It centers around the Lord.
A. First of all, I want to wish each of you precious mothers a happy Mother’s Day. I not only want to recognize the mothers but also all of the ladies. I love and appreciate the ladies of this church. As your pastor, I want to commend you for your love for the Lord, this church, and my family.
B. Second, I want to thank the ladies of this church. When I need something done, most of the time I can ask one of the ladies to do it and it gets done and done right. Thank God for Christian mothers and ladies.
C. This is your special day. A day set apart for recognition and appreciation for motherhood. Mothers need to be appreciated year around for their labor of love in taking care of their families.
Mothers... And... Others
Others weary of the noise,
Mothers play with girls and boys
Others scold because we fell.
Mothers kiss and make it well.
Others love us more or less
Mothers love with steadiness..
Others pardon, hating yet.
Mothers pardon and forget.
Others keep the ancient score,
Mothers never shut the door.
Others grow incredulous,
Mothers still believe in us.
Others throw their faith away,
Mothers pray, and pray and pray.
- - Amos R. Wells
Reflections of a Mother...
I gave you life, but cannot live it for you.
I can teach you things, but I cannot make you learn.
I can give you directions, but I cannot be there to lead you.
I can allow you freedom, but I cannot account for it.
I can take you to church, but I cannot make you believe.
I can teach you right from wrong, but I cannot always decide for you.
I can buy you beautiful clothes, but I cannot make you beautiful inside.
I can offer you advice, but I cannot accept it for you.
I can give you love, but I cannot force it upon you.
I can teach you to share, but I cannot make you unselfish.
I can teach you respect, but I cannot force you to show honor.
I can advise you about friends, but cannot choose them for you.
I can advise you about virtue, but I cannot keep you pure.
I can tell you the facts of life, but I can't build your reputation.
I can tell you about drink, but I can't say "no" for you.
I can warn you about drugs but I can't prevent you from using them.
I can tell you about lofty goals, but I can't achieve them for you.
I can teach you about kindness, but I can't force you to be gracious.
I can warn you about sins, but I cannot make you moral
I can pray for you, but I cannot make you walk with God.
I can tell you how to live, but I cannot give you eternal life.
I can love you with unconditional love all of my life..... and I will.
Before I was a Mom I made and ate hot meals.
I had unstained clothing.I had quiet conversations on the phone.
Before I was a Mom I slept as late as I wanted
And never worried about how late I got into bed.
I brushed my hair and my teeth every single day.
Before I was a Mom I cleaned my house each day.
I never tripped over toys or forgot words to lullabies.
Before I was a Mom I had never been Puked on, Pooped on, Spit on, Chewed on, Peed on.
Or pinched by tiny fingers
Before I was a Mom I had complete control of: My thoughts, My body, My mind.
And I slept all night.
Before I was a Mom I never looked into Teary eyes and cried.
I never got gloriously happy over a simple grin.
I never sat up late hours at night watching a baby sleep.
Before I was a Mom I never held a sleeping Baby just because I didn't want to put it down.
I never felt my heart break into a million Pieces when I couldn't stop the hurt.
I never knew that something so small Could affect my life so much.
I never knew that I could love someone so much.
I never knew I would love being a Mom.
Before I was a Mom I didn't know the feeling of having my heart walk around outside my body.
I didn't know how special it could feel to Feed a hungry baby.
I didn't know that bond between a Mother and her child.
I didn't know that something so small Could make me feel so important.
Before I was a Mom I had never gotten up in the middle Of the night every 10 minutes to make sure all was okay.
I had never known: The warmth, The joy, The love, The heartache, Thewonderment, Or the satisfaction of being a Mom.
I didn't know I was capable of feeling so much...BEFORE I was a Mom.
D. As I began to think about Mother’s Day my thoughts once again turned to Calvary. I have been preaching for several weeks on the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, so I think it befitting that I continue that process this special morning.
E. In the verses that I read, we find our Lord—as He was dying—taking care of Mary, His earthly mother. He was God and He was man. As man, He loved His mother! I want to give you a few thoughts for this Mother’s Day that will both help you and your wife or mother.
1. Love Her - Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Proverbs 10:1 The proverbs of Solomon. A wise son maketh a glad father: but a foolish son is the heaviness of his mother.
Proverbs 5:18-19 Let thy fountain be blessed: and rejoice with the wife of thy youth. 19 Let her be as the loving hind and pleasant roe; let her breasts satisfy thee at all times; and be thou ravished always with her love. (Men, love your wife! Children, love your mother!)
2. Respect Her - 1 Peter 3:7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. (Honor means to place upon a pedestal. To worship and reverence her. Be careful how you treat your wife, husband! Be careful how you treat your mother, young person!)
Proverbs 15:20 A wise son maketh a glad father: but a foolish man despiseth his mother.
Proverbs 20:20 Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness. (Be careful how you talk to her! You disrespect mama and you get in trouble with God!)
Proverbs 30:11 There is a generation that curseth their father, and doth not bless their mother.
Proverbs 30:17 The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.
Proverbs 31:28 Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. (Place her on a pedestal in both the home and in public)
3. Remember Her - Proverbs 31:10 Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. (Sometimes her labor, love, and strength go unnoticed by her family. If you have a good, loving, faithful, conscientious wife—be grateful and thankful.)
Proverbs 15:20 A wise son maketh a glad father: but a foolish man despiseth his mother.
4. Relish Her – Proverbs 23:22 Hearken unto thy father that begat thee, and despise not thy mother when she is old.
Ecclesiastes 9:9 Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity, which he hath given thee under the sun, all the days of thy vanity: for that is thy portion in this life, and in thy labour which thou takest under the sun. (One day, she will be here no longer! When she is gone, make sure that you have no regrets! I miss greatly mom and dad.)
John 19:26-27 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! 27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home. (The last act of our Lord Jesus Christ was to make sure that mother was cared for in the best way possible. The disciple “whom he loved.”)
Conclusion: Again, I want to wish each dear lady here this morning a very special Mother’s Day. You deserve it!
Sunday, May 3, 2009
2 Samuel 22:4
A. We have seen that the Lord is worthy of or praise because of His excellent name, His wondrous works, His exceeding power, His matchless grace, and infinite wisdom. His name is truly wonderful, His works marvelous, His power beyond our imagination, His grace is truly matchless, and His wisdom past finding out.
B. Today, I want to look at another aspect of God that is worthy of or praise: His eternal Word! What an amazing Book!
1. Dr. C.I. Scofield referred to it as the Book of Books.
2. Dr. Thomas Browne called it the Divine Library.
3. T.J. McCrossan said it was God’s own writing.
C. Some facts about your Bible:
It contains 66 Books – 39 in the Old Testament (OT) and 27 in the New Testament (NT).
There are 1,189 chapters in our Bible – 929 in the OT and 260 in the NT.
There are 31,102 verses – 23,145 in the OT and 7,957 in the NT.
There are 788,280 words – 609,269 in the OT and 179,011 in the NT.
There are over 3.5 million letters in the Bible.
The longest chapter in the Bible is Psalm 119 (176 verses, 2426 words – 4 full pages).
The shortest chapter is Psalm 117 (2 verses, 33 words).
The longest verse in the Bible is Esther 8:9 (90 words); the shortest verse is
John 11:35 (2 words). I Thessalonians 5:16 also has 2 words, “Rejoice evermore.”
The two middle books in the Bible are Micah and Nahum.
The middle chapter in the Bible is Psalm 117.
The two middle verses in the Bible are (some say) Psalm 103:1, 2. Others say Psalm 118:8! I have not counted nor do I intend to. Just read it!
1. God’s Word Is Wonderful Because Of Its Authorship – 2 Peter 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. (All other books are authored by men, not of man but authored by God Himself!)
2. God’s Word Is Wonderful Because Of Its Antiquity – John 1:1-2 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. (The Word of God was before man ever received it by inspiration. It is as old as God is old.)
3. God’s Word Is Wonderful Because Of Its Unity - 2 Peter 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. (Men, not man! Although written under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost by over 40 different men covering a period of nearly 1,600 years, it displays a remarkable cohesion and unity that is unparalleled by any other religious writing.)
4. God’s Word Is Wonderful Because Of Its Accuracy - Psalms 119:128 Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way.
a. It is Historically Right
b. It is Scientifically Right
c. It is Judicially Right
d. It is Morally Right
e. It is Prophetically Right
5. God’s Word Is Wonderful Because Of Its Authority - 2 Peter 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: (The context of this verse says that our Bible is more sure than angels speaking or even God Himself speaking from Heaven. It is Authority! It is the final Authority! It overrules every thing else and everybody else. Man will one day be judged by it.)
6. God’s Word Is Wonderful Because Of Its Results – 1 Thessalonians 2:13 For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.
a. God’s Word Can Save
b. God’s Word Can Soothe
c. God’s Word Can Succor
d. God’s Word Can Satisfy
7. God’s Word Is Wonderful Because Of Its Claims – 1 Peter 1:23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. (It is inerrant, infallible, immutable, and eternal! The Word of God is unchanging in its character, universal in its scope, irreproachable in its integrity, and undiminished by time.)
Conclusion: God is worth to be praised because of His wonderful, eternal Word!
1 Corinthians 15:1-8
A. This year, I have done a little extra preaching on the Resurrection. As a norm, I preach on Calvary just before Easter and on the Resurrection Easter Sunday Morning. I am putting a little more emphasis on the Resurrection this year.
B. I feel that we often put too little emphasis on what God so greatly emphasis.
1. Jesus Christ was declared to be God by the Resurrection - Romans 1:4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:
2. We are saved through faith in the Resurrection - Romans 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
3. We have a blessed hope because of the Resurrection - 1 Peter 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
C. The list could go on but that is not my subject this morning. I want to look at a couple of verses this morning that will help us to realize just why Christ appeared to so many in so many different manners.
Zechariah 13:7 Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones. (After his passion, the sheep were scattered! Things in this life will scatter the sheep.)
Acts 2:7 And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans? (Here, at the empowering of the church, we find the disciples in one place and in one accord.)
D. I want to look at a few of the Post Resurrection Appearances of Christ and what they meant to the believer.
1. He Appeared To Mary Magdalene – To Comfort A Sorrowing Heart – John 20:10-17 Then the disciples went away again unto their own home. 11 But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre, 12 And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. 13 And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him. 14 And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. 16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. 17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.
a. How Mary Magdalene loved the Lord - John 20:15-16 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. 16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.
b. He had forgiven her much and she loved much - Mark 16:9 Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils.
Luke 7:47 Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little. (This Post Resurrection Appearance shows us that are saved that it is well with our soul!)
2. He Appeared To The Disciples On The Emmaus Road – To Encourage Confused Disciples - Luke 24:13-15 And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs. 14 And they talked together of all these things which had happened. 15 And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them.
a. They were looking for the Kingdom Age - Luke 24:21 But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done.
b. When they knew Him They Were Jubilant - Luke 24:32 And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures? (This Post Resurrection Appearance gave heart to the Disappointed!)
3. He Appeared To Simon Peter – To Restore A Fallen Saint - Mark 16:7 But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you.
a. Peter denied Christ thrice - Matthew 26:75 And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.
b. The Lord sent word of His coming - Mark 16:7 But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you.
c. Simon confessed thrice of his love for the Lord - John 21:17 He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep. (Leighton Ford once said, “God loves us the way we are but He loves us too much to leave us that way.” This Post Resurrection Appearance shows our Lord’s love for us, even when we are in sin. He comes to restore us!)
4. He Appeared To The Ten Disciples – To Give Peace To Their Fearful Hearts - John 20:19-21 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. 20 And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. 21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.
a. The disciples were fearful for their lives. The Lord Jesus was no longer with them in the flesh to protect and comfort them. The Comforter was not yet given and their hearts were afraid.
b. Our Lord spoke Peace to their fearful hearts. (This Post Resurrection Appearance speaks Peace to our fearful hearts! Has your heart ever been fearful? Because He lives, we live also and we are assured that He will be with us until the end.)
1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
5. He Appeared To Thomas – To Reassure A Doubting Soul - John 20:24-25 But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.
a. Thomas doubted the resurrection. We find in Luke 7:19-22 John the Baptist had the same doubts: “And John calling unto him two of his disciples sent them to Jesus, saying, Art thou he that should come? or look we for another? 20 When the men were come unto him, they said, John Baptist hath sent us unto thee, saying, Art thou he that should come? or look we for another? 21 And in that same hour he cured many of their infirmities and plagues, and of evil spirits; and unto many that were blind he gave sight. 22 Then Jesus answering said unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached.”
b. Christ came to Thomas - John 20:27-28 Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. 28 And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God. (This Post Resurrection Appearance did away with the doubts of a believer. Have you ever had doubts? The Lord will give you the assurance that you need if you will simply look to Him.)
6. He Appeared On The Mount Of Olives - To Promise God’s Power For Service - Acts 1:3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God:
a. He promised them the Power of the Holy Ghost - Acts 1:5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
b. He promised them the Power of Witness - Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. (This Post Resurrection Appearance promised the power of the Holy Ghost to serve. “Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.” God equips us for His service with)
7. He Appeared To Saul Of Tarsus – To Show A Lost World The Way Of Salvation – Acts 9:1-5 And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest, 2 And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem. 3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: 4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? 5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.
a. God saved the “chief” - 1 Timothy 1:15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.
b. If He can save the “chief,” He can save all of the Indians! - Revelation 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. (This last Post Resurrection Appearance gives hope to all of mankind. Christ died for them and they can be saved through faith in that Risen Saviour!)
Conclusion: I am glad that Jesus did not just resurrect and ascend back into Heaven. He did not leave His church comfortless, but showed himself alive by many infallible proofs.