Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Church And Faithfulness

Temple Baptist Church - 2-27-2011

James 1:17


A. Here in this passage, which deals with chastening of the Lord, we find reference to God’s unfailing faithfulness. The description of God’s faithfulness covers both His person and purposes. “No variableness, neither shadow of turning.” The person and purpose of God never varies. GOD IS FAITHFUL!

1. God Is Faithful To His Person - Malachi 3:6 For I [am] the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.

2. God Is Faithful To His People - Lamentations 3:22-23 [It is of] the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. [They are] new every morning: great [is] thy faithfulness.

a) God Is Faithful In His Preservation - 1 Peter 1:5 Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

John 10:28-30 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave [them] me, is greater than all; and no [man] is able to pluck [them] out of my Father’s hand. I and [my] Father are one.

b) God Is Faithful In His Protection - Psalms 4:8 I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety.

c) God Is Faithful In His Provision - Philippians 4:19 But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

3. God Is Faithful To His Promises - 2 Timothy 2:13 If we believe not, [yet] he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.

4. God Is Faithful To His Purposes - Job 23:13-15 But he [is] in one [mind], and who can turn him? and [what] his soul desireth, even [that] he doeth. For he performeth [the thing that is] appointed for me: and many such [things are] with him. Therefore am I troubled at his presence: when I consider, I am afraid of him.

5. God Is Faithful Perpetually - Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. (Hallelujah, what a Savior!)

B. If God is this faithful to His person, promises, purposes, and people—is it not a valid request that His people be found faithful to him? 1 Corinthians 4:2 Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.

C. In Matthew 25:14-27, the phrase “Well done, good and faithful servant” is used twice while the phrase “Thou wicked and slothful servant” is used once.

1. Faithful is a commandment, not an option.

2. Faithfulness is a blessing, not a cursing.

D. Faithful people are a blessing to both the church and the pastor as well as to each other. They love the church; support the church; and can be depended upon. God is looking for faithful people. Proverbs 20:6 Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?

1. Faithfulness is greater than talent – you may be the greatest singer in the world, but if you are not here to sing, you are useless!

2. Faithfulness is greater that giving - you may be the greatest giver in the world, but if you are not here to give, you are useless!

3. Faithfulness is greater than ability – you may be the greatest teacher in the world, but if you are not here to teach, you are useless!

4. Faithfulness is greater than soul winning ability – you may be the greatest soul winner in the world, but if you are not on visitation to soul win, you are useless!

5. The list could go on indefinitely, but I believe you understand the importance of faithfulness.

Hebrews 10:22-23 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of [our] faith without wavering; (for he [is] faithful that promised;)

E. Before I get into the remaining part of this message, I want to say this about Temple Baptist Church. Our church is full of faithful people! We are blessed with people who are here Sunday Morning, Sunday Night, and Wednesday Night services and, as a pastor, I am thankful for you. Many of my messages are “preventive maintenance” but there are always a few in every church who have a problem with unfaithfulness.

Here are some areas of faithfulness.

1. We Are To Be Faithful to The Services of The Church - Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. (It is important to be both faithful to attend and faithful to be on time! It is easy to get out of the habit of coming to certain services because they are inconvenient. When you miss a service, you miss a blessing and often the message is just what Satan did not want you to hear. It is just as important to be on time as it is to come. Every part of the service is important: from the opening prayer to the closing prayer. People are never late for work, school, ball games, doctor’s appointments, etc. because it is required but are often late to church because it does not matter. It shows a lack of priority in our schedules. Sunday School is just as important as the Worship Service. Too often, teachers prepare and students do not show up! What a discouragement to those teachers as well as to the other pupils. Sunday School should never be an “elective.”)

2. We Are To Be Faithful To The Tithe - Luke 16:11 If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? (Malachi 3:10 says, “That there may be meat in mine house.” It is the tithe that keeps the lights on and the doors open to the church. It is the tithe that keeps toilet paper in the bathrooms! I know that is important. It is important not only to tithe but to tithe regularly. As it is important for each of you to get your full paycheck on time, it is just as important for the tithe to be regular so that the bills can be paid on time. Not only does the church need for the tithe to be regular, the missions program needs regularity also. What comes in for February dictates who gets their support. If you are gone for a while, either on vacation of business, if the tithe is not there—then sometimes not all of the missionaries can receive their support.)

3. We Are To Be Faithful To The Service of God - Ephesians 4:16 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. (As every part of your body is necessary to its wellbeing, every member of the local church has a vital role in its effectiveness. Most churches are not effective because most of its parts are not working. It takes all of us to make the church grow and run efficiently. Everyone is a soul winner; everyone is an inviter. We are “labourers together with God” in the work of the Lord.)

4. We Are To Be Faithful In Prayer - Ephesians 6:18-19 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; (19) And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, (Faithfully praying for one another; faithfully praying for our families; faithfully praying for those in authority over us; faithfully praying for the lost; praying faithfully for our church; praying faithfully for your pastor.)

Conclusion: As the coming of the Lord nears, let us be even more faithful than we have been. The greatest ability is dependability!

How To Have Spiritual Stability In The Last Days

Temple Baptist Church - 2-27-2011

Matthew 24:1-8


A. In these verses, our Lord answers the question of the Apostles concerning the second coming. We need to understand the interpretation of these verses in light of our days.

1. Verses 4-7 give the signs of the times just prior to the Rapture of the Church.

2. Verse 8 signals the removal of the Church and the beginning of the Tribulation Period.

3. Verses 9-26 give a vivid description of Jacob’s Trouble. It is divided into two equal parts with the abomination of desolation in the middle. (Verse 15) I do not want to get into that at this time because it is not my message.

4. Verse 27-31 pictures the second coming of Christ in great power and glory (Revelation 1:7)

B. Well, here we stand at the end of the Church Age with the whole world in turmoil. There is:

1. Apostasy and Spiritual Deception – rejection of scripture and the constant blowing of the winds of false doctrine.

2. Disobedience to authority – in the home; in the church; in the schools; in society.

3. Social Disorder throughout the world – wars and rumors of wars are rampant; the overthrowing of established government; unrest here in the USA

4. Famine and disease – more medicines and more diseases; people starving in a world of plenty.

5. Sinfulness and perversion – you name it and it is rampant. Sodomites are taking over our land; drugs and alcohol have become acceptable ways of life and are openly advertised; marriages breaking up in record numbers and being replaced by “common law” unions.

6. Fear and distress – more people than ever on Paxil, Prozac, sleep aids, etc. Men’s hearts failing them for fear. Uncertainty is the rule of our day while the world rocks and rolls.

C. Many of God’s children are either discouraged in the work or have become casualties and have “fallen through the cracks.” I want to see our people be “steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.”

How To Have Spiritual Stability In The Last Days

1. Understand the times in which we live. Luke 21:28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.

2. Trust the Lord with your life and livelihood. Matthew 6:31-33 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (32) (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. (33) But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

3. Keep yourself in the will of God. Jude 20-21 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, (21) Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

4. Watch unto prayer. Philippians 4:6-7 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. (7) And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

5. Stay in church. Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

6. Keep your hearts and minds stayed upon the Lord. 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:

7. Keep your eyes on the skies. Titus 2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;

Sunday, February 13, 2011

How To Have Love In Your Marriage

Temple Baptist Church - 2-13-2011

Genesis 24:50-67


A. One of the most misused and misunderstood of all words is “love!” Most equate love with a “mushy” feeling for someone. I believe that true love goes far beyond just being an emotion. We find the love of God in John 3:16. It was a love that loved without being loved in return. God’s love is not man based, it is need based.

B. The first mention of love in the bible is found in this morning’s text. Rebecca went with the servant having no knowledge of whom or what Isaac was. In verse 58, she simply said, “I will go.” This did not signify desperation but rather determination! In verse 67, Isaac loved Rebecca without either knowing or seeing her without her veil. Once again, I find in the word “love” a determination! Thus, in the first mention of love, we find that love must be determined! As God determined His love in giving His Son, we must also determine our love. A woman once told me that she no longer loved her husband to which I replied, “You will not love your husband.”

C. It should be noticed in Scripture that man must be both commanded to love and also to learn to love! Throughout the Bible, command after command deals with the love relationship of:

1. Man Is To Love God - Deuteronomy 6:4-5 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: 5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. (“Thou shalt?” Why not “thou wilt!” After what He did for Israel? After what He did for us at Calvary? We must be COMMANDED? Why? Because of our human nature.)

2. The Saint Is To Love Mankind - Galatians 5:14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. (This one is a little harder but is made much harder because of our selfish nature. Red, yellow, black, brown, and white; every race in every place! “And who is my neighbor?” All mankind for whom Christ died.)

3. The Saint Is To Love The Saints - John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. 35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. (A new commandment given to family? You are my brothers and sisters in Christ and I love you better than butter pecan ice cream! But, there are times when we squabble and fight. We want what we want and want everyone else to see eye-to-eye with us on every point! I am not always right on every subject but am hard to convince sometimes. I have a selfish nature!)

4. The Husband Is To Love His Wife - Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; (We, as men, have to be commanded to love you gorgeous creatures? Whoa! You mean it is not always easy to love you? Men are selfish by nature and must be instructed by God to give ourselves to our wives. A man was looking for a wife so he took out an ad in the local newspaper which read: “Wife wanted. Must have bass boat, motor, and trailer. Send a picture of the boat, motor, and trailer!”)

5. The Wife Is To Love Her Husband - Titus 2:3-5 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; 4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. (You mean that the women have to be taught to love that “hunk” that she married? That good looking bundle of muscle and brawn? Most of us are still “hunks,” just a little more of a hunk now! You women are selfish too! You want the man to be in charge when it is convenient and obedient to you when it suits. Than is human nature. You are obedient to him when it suits and disobedient to him when it suits. You are human!)

6. The Mother Is To Love Her Children – Titus 2:4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children. (Mothers have to be taught to love their children? Why? Those wonderful little darlings who keep you up all night, mess their diapers, tear up an anvil in a sand pile, lie every chance they get, tell everybody else what you do, etc. Those wonderful little children of yours [I know everyone else’s are brats, but not yours!]. We are selfish in nature and children require monumental amounts of time and effort.)

D. One of the most important aspects of a stable home is that of love! Not just some mushy, smoochie feeling but rather a determined effort on behalf of both a man and his wife. Pardon me this morning but I will do a little marriage counseling for a few minutes. It would not be a bad thing if the entire church was subjected to the counseling that I give before marriage.

1. Love Must Have Passion – Song of Solomon 1:2 Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth: for thy love is better than wine. (Show your mate that you love her or him! Telling them that you love them becomes just empty words when there is no feeling involved.)

2. Love Must Have Devotion - Song of Solomon 2:16a My beloved is mine, and I am his:

Mark 10:9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. (How wonderful it is to see men and women who have a spouse in the Nursing Home attending to them personally. Their love and devotion endure until death. "And forsaking all others!")

3. Love Must Desire Companionship – Song of Solomon 7:10-11 (10) I am my beloved's, and his desire is toward me. (11) Come, my beloved, let us go forth into the field; let us lodge in the villages. (Your mate should be the best friend that you have in this world. I often tell young people in pre-marriage counseling to learn to do things together. Cultivate hobbies that can be done together. Learn to spend quality time together. Many married couples raise children and then, when the children are grown and gone, they find out that the only thing that they have in common is children.)

4. Love Must Be Overlooking - Song of Solomon 4:7 Thou art all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee. (One of the most common of all marital failures is that of “nit picking.” Before marriage, couples often only see the good points in their future mates but, later, they major on the so-called shortcomings. I have often said that “the morning after marriage you never wake up with the one that you dated. Now we see each other in both the best and worst times. Your mate is human! Love must learn to overlook!)

5. Love Must Be Forgiving - Ephesians 4:31-32 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: (32) And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you. (In the vast majority of marriages, there will be disagreement of one sort of the other. One, learn to never go to bed mad, letting the sun go down on your wrath. Two, learn to talk problems out. Discussion allows each of us to see the other’s perspective and we may even find out that they are right. Learn to forgive even when your mate is wrong.)

6. Love Must Be Sacrificial - Song of Solomon 7:10-13 (10) I am my beloved's, and his desire is toward me. (11) Come, my beloved, let us go forth into the field; let us lodge in the villages. (12) Let us get up early to the vineyards; let us see if the vine flourish, whether the tender grape appear, and the pomegranates bud forth: there will I give thee my loves. (13) The mandrakes give a smell, and at our gates are all manner of pleasant fruits, new and old, which I have laid up for thee, O my beloved. (Learn to give as well as take. I full well understand the biblical structure of the home. Both mates are to be heirs together of the grace of this life. My wife and I are a team. Though I am the head of the home, I am not a dictator in it. Though my wife is submissive in the home, she is not a door mat. I must give us my desires as she gives up hers and learn to desire together.)

7. Love Is Learning To Lean - Genesis 2:18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.

Song of Solomon 8:5a Who is this that cometh up from the wilderness, leaning upon her beloved?

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. (10) For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. (11) Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? (12) And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken. (As I am my wife’s strength [this does not place me before the Lord], she is my strength. Together, with the Lord, we can make it!)

8. Love Needs To Be Unquenchable - Song of Solomon 8:6-7 Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame. (7) Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it: if a man would give all the substance of his house for love, it would utterly be contemned.

"How do I love thee? Let me count the ways..."
by Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861)

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday's
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with a passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints, --- I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life! --- and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The War With The Flesh

Temple Baptist Church - 2-9-2011

Ephesians 4:21-32


A. Last week, we saw the method of “putting off” the Old Man and “putting on” the New Man. It takes a “reprograming” or “renewing” of the “spirit” of the mind. The world has programed our thinking in such a way as to agree with the wickedness of our flesh. Our flesh takes no encouragement in order to continue in sinfulness. To live a life of sin takes no change at all.

B. In order to live a Christ like life, you must determine in your heart to both “put off” and to “put on!” Both actions are against nature or the “natural man.” It is a daily death to the things of the world: a self crucification.

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.

C. The flesh or the “Old Man” has so many wicked characteristics. We that are saved are tempted by the flesh in a myriad of areas. It is of no wonder that the Bible speaks of the sin that “so easily besets” us.

1. Man was created in righteousness and innocence - Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Genesis 5:2 Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created. (They were created in innocence and placed into the Garden but were given responsibility to Law.)

2. Man was deformed by his disobedience to God’s Law - Genesis 2:15-17 And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. 16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: 17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Romans 5:12-14 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: 13 (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. 14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. (Man died both physically and spiritually. Adam died physically in Genesis 5 at the age of 930 years but died spiritually in Genesis 3 and blood had to be shed.)

3. Man was transformed through faith in the gospel - 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (Notice with me that the King James Bible says “creature” and not “creation!” Most new versions use the word “creation” here. God did not recreate man, He transformed him. Let me give you an example: I have a dog who was born innocent but she chooses to be disobedient at times. If I take her to Obedience School, they can transform her and teach her obedience. She is still the same dog but now is educated to right and wrong. She has not been changed from being a dog, just transformed into a new creature that is obedient. We become new creatures, not recreated! Ephesians 2:10 does not contradict this as we were created unto good works, before ordained to walk in them. Now that we are saved, we are to once again walk as we were created to walk.)

Romans 6:3-4 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

4. Our spiritual man is now transformed but the body remains in a cursed, unregenerate condition until either death or rapture - 1 Corinthians 15:52-54 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. (Now, the fight is on!)

D. Failure to understand what I have just said leads to total defeat in this war with our flesh which is contrary to the new creature that lives inside. Can two walk together except they be agreed? We are enemies of the flesh and the flesh is an enemy with us so, you had better quit pampering and feeding it!

1. The Depravity Of The Flesh - 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. (I need to clarify something at this point. Depravity does not mean inability! Men can and have done good. Many lost people are what we classify as good people. The are good neighbors; they are moral; they have good manners; they have great accomplishments; and many are better on these points than some professing Christians. By Total Depravity, I mean that man has the capability of doing all of the below listing of evil works.)

2. The Deception Of The Flesh - Jeremiah 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? (The flesh can never be trusted! “If I know my heart.” You don’t! Paul said, “For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.” [Romans 7:11])

3. The Defilement Of The Flesh - Romans 7:17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. (You cannot get away from your flesh. You can abstain from all appearance of evil in almost every of life but your flesh is always there with you. You see it and you live in it! It is defiling to the spiritual man. It causes him to do unthinkable things and spend much time weeping over its failures.)

4. The Devastation OF The Flesh - Romans 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? (It is because of the weakness of flesh that man sins and this body much be changed before we can go to Heaven. Your flesh will destroy your life if you give into it.)

1. The Warning Of The Flesh - Ephesians 4:21-24 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: (22) That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; (23) And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; (24) And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

Romans 7:17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

2. The Walk Of The Flesh – It is Pleasing. Hebrews 11:25 Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; (This is the walk of the old life. When we got saved, everything became new and we began our walk in the Spirit. Salvation did not make sin any less pleasurable to our flesh though. I still have the same cravings and desires that I had before salvation but have been delivered from them through Christ Jesus.)

a. The Lost professors will eventually return to their walk in the flesh - 2 Peter 2:20-22 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. 21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. 22 But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.

Matthew 12:43-45 When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none. 44 Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished. 45 Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.

b. The Carnal believer will eventually return to their walk in the flesh - Ephesians 2:3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. (Notice the “shall not inherit the kingdom of God” in this passage as well as our context passage of Galatians 5.)

c. First, let me say that failure to walk in the Spirit is to walk in the flesh! There is no middle ground. We are either spiritual or we are carnal! We cannot be both at the same time. If we are spiritual then we do not fulfill the lusts of the flesh. If we are carnal then we do not fulfill the walk of the Spirit. (We pamper and feed our flesh instead of starving it and bringing it under subjection.)

Psalms 106:13-15 They soon forgat his works; they waited not for his counsel: 14 But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness, and tempted God in the desert. 15 And he gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul. (Fat bodies make for lean souls!)

1 Corinthians 9:27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

d. Secondly, to walk in the flesh is to do despite to the Spirit of grace - Hebrews 10:29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace? (We grieve Him! We vex Him! We resist Him! The Holy Ghosts lusts against the flesh in order to bring us into obedience to Christ. It is an insult to the Holy Ghost when we ignore His leading and pleading. He loves us and Satan hates. Whom should we follow? Duh!)

3. The War Of The Flesh – It is Perpetual. Romans 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? (Sometimes, some believers lose the war with the flesh because it is perpetual. It is never ending and through spiritual anemia, the believer becomes weak and worn down thus giving in to the flesh. I know that many of these are unsaved “dogs” and “sows” who clean up for a while and then return to their old ways but then we have Demas who loved this present world.)

a. It is a heart wrenching struggle for the child of God - Romans 7:14-23 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. 15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. 16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. 17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. 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. 19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. 20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. 21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. 22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: 23 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. (You may sin but, if you are saved, it will tear your heart out. This is one acid test to see if you are truly saved. I hate it when I fail. It sickens my heart when I sin. I despise it with all of my heart.)

b. Though we should be spiritual and Spirit filled all of the time, we do fail God miserably sometimes - Psalms 51:2-4 Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. 3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. 4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. (A man after God’s own heart. The sweet psalmist of Israel. The king who established a perpetual throne.)

1) Earthly victory is most often only temporary. 1 Corinthians 15:31 I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.

2) Earthly values are distorted by our flesh. 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.

4. The Works Of The Flesh – They are Powerful. 1 Corinthians 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.

a. We need to understand the Possibility of the failure in this war - Romans 6:12-14 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. 13 Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. 14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.

Romans 7:15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. (This is the Apostle Paul! If he struggled and lost many a battle, I need to understand my weakness also. Sometimes we are harsh on those who have sinned; those who have failed; those who have gotten discouraged; and those who have just plain quit! Be careful!

1 Corinthians 10:12 Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.

2 Peter 3:17 Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness. (No one is exempt from the possibility of moral failure! No matter how godly and spiritual we may be, our war is day to day, hour to hour, moment by moment!)

b. We need to understand the Possibility of the flesh in our failure - Walking in the flesh will always manifest it’s works! Galatians 5:19-21 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, (20) Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, (21) 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.

1) Adultery – God’s married people

2) Fornication – God’s single people

3) Uncleanness – Un-chastity in either thought of deed. Unnatural lusts or perversions.

4) Lasciviousness – plain old filthiness in thought, deed, or gestures.

5) Idolatry – In our day, covetousness or the love of money is still the root of ALL evil!

6) Witchcraft – Magic, sorcery, astrology, drugs [pharmaceutical comes from this word])

7) Hatred – We are to love even our enemies much less one another! We are to love the Lord our God and our neighbor as ourselves.)

8) Variance – contentious, debate, quarrelsome instead of easy to get along with.

9) Emulations – indignation, jealousy, unfavorable zeal.

10) Strife – faction, always fighting about something. Some fight everything. We need to fight the right kind of fights.

11) Seditions – disunion, division, or uprising. Be followers of me as I follow Christ!

12) Heresies – false doctrines that cause disunion.

13) Envyings – We are do desire the best for others, not desire what they have. Dissatisfaction!

14) Murders – to slaughter, either by killing the flesh or destroying with the tongue!

15) Drunkenness - means just what it says! Intoxication!

16) Revellings – carousing, letting it loose!

c. This is talking about the saved, not the lost! Walk in the Spirit and ye shall not fulfill the desires of the flesh! Walk in the flesh and anything is possible!

5. The Warning Of The Flesh – It is Pricey! Revelation 20:6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. (Our works are rewarded two-fold: at the Judgment Seat of Christ and during the Millennium.)

a. At the Judgment Seat Of Christ we win crowns - 1 Corinthians 3:11-15 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; 13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. 14 If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 15 If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire. (These we will cast at His feet because only He is worthy!)

b. During the Millennium, we rule and reign according to our works - Luke 19:17-19 And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities. 18 And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds. 19 And he said likewise to him, Be thou also over five cities.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Behold What Manner Of Love

Temple Baptist Church - 2-6-2011

1 John 3:1-3


A. This passage of scripture is one of the greatest in the Bible dealing with our position in Christ. It describes our position as “sonship” and “sonship” is a relationship which cannot be broken. It is “birth based” and a birth cannot be either reversed nor can it be nullified! If you are born, you are forever born. This is Eternal Security at its best.

B. In these verses, we see three things:

1. We see what Christ has done for us. He saved us!

2. We see what Christ is doing in us. He is changing us!

3. We see what Christ is going to do for us. He is coming for us and we will be transformed.

C. It is so easy to take for granted what we have as we walk in the realm of the temporal. May the Lord help us this morning to think upon both the temporal and eternal benefits of our great salvation!

1. Love’s Position – “Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us” (What a love! Calvary’s love!)

2. Love’s Privilege – “that we should be called the sons of God” (What a privilege! Not just saved but sons!)

3. Love’s Promise – “when he shall appear” (What a promise! He not only is coming, He may come today!)

4. Love’s Purification – “purifieth himself” (What a change! What a difference salvation makes!)

5. Love’s Possibility – “even as he is pure” (What a possibility! One day, we will see Him as He is and we shall be like Him!)

D. What a wonderful thing it is to be saved! We often get our eyes on the things of this world but if the only thing that God ever did for us was to save us, it would be a wonderful thing. Here are just a few things that we have because of Calvary. These are spiritual things! These are eternal things!

1. We Have A Wonderful Redemption - Romans 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

Hebrews 9:12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.

2. The Lord Has Given Us A Divine Deliverance - 2 Corinthians 1:10 Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us;

Colossians 1:13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: (Delivered from Satan)

1 Thessalonians 1:10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come. (Delivered from hell)

3. The Lord Has Given Us A Wonderful Transformation - 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. (What a wonderful change has been made since Jesus came into my heart!)

4. The Lord Has Given Us A Complete Forgiveness - Ephesians 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Romans 4:7 Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.

Colossians 2:13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; (Past, present, and future)

5. The Lord Has Given Us A Glorious Reconciliation - Colossians 1:21 And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in you mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled

2 Corinthians 5:19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. (Reconcile - Brought into friendship from a state of disagreement or enmity)

6. The Lord Has Given Us A Blessed Peace - 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.

Colossians 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.

Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

7. The Lord Has Given Us An Eternal Inheritance - Ephesians 1:18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

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.

1 Corinthians 3:21 Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours;

8. The Lord Will Give Us A Heavenly Translation - 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 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: 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.