Sunday, July 2, 2017

Paul, An Apostle

Temple Baptist Church - 7-2-2017
Romans 1:1


Introduction:

A.  Paul’s Attitude, A Servant of Jesus Christ (first and foremost).  God’s men will never rule until they first serve.  God will not call men who are not busy in the work of the Lord.  Paul got busy before God called him. 

1.  We saw that Paul began to serve the day he got saved.  Acts 9:19-22  And when he had received meat, he was strengthened. Then was Saul certain days with the disciples which were at Damascus.  (20)  And straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God.  (21)  But all that heard him were amazed, and said; Is not this he that destroyed them which called on this name in Jerusalem, and came hither for that intent, that he might bring them bound unto the chief priests?  (22)  But Saul increased the more in strength, and confounded the Jews which dwelt at Damascus, proving that this is very Christ.

2.  Because Paul was a servant, he met his divine appointments.  1 Timothy 1:12  And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;

B.  Paul’s Authority, Called To Be An Apostle.  The Apostle Paul spent much time vindicating his apostleship.  People were familiar with the original twelve because they had been with Jesus.  There were the 12 original apostles but Judas, a lost man, lost his bishopric.  God called Paul to take the place of Judas.

1.  In the time of this epistle’s writing, though transitional and passing, the gift of apostles was still viable. 

Ephesians 4:11-12  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:  (God, because “that which is perfect”—the completed canon of Scripture—had not come, gave prophets—to speak and write inspired Scripture from God and apostles to represent God to man.  These were both passing gifts.  In the New Testament and Church Age, God gave evangelists—missionaries, and the “pastor and teacher,” to the local church.)

2.  The apostles were to be 12 in number according to the Book of Revelation.

Revelation 4:4  And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold.  (12 representing the tribes of Israel and 12 representing the Apostles.)

Revelation 21:14  And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

3.  The failure of Judas Iscariot and the replacement of Paul by God.

John 6:70-71  Jesus answered them, Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil?  (71)  He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon: for he it was that should betray him, being one of the twelve.

Acts 1:15-26  And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)  (16)  Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.  (17)  For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.  (18)  Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.  (19)  And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.  (20)  For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take.  (21)  Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,  (22)  Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.  (23)  And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias.  (24)  And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen,  (25)  That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.  (26)  And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.  (Appointing apostles was to be a choice by God, not by man.  Though this was well intended, it was not God’s choice.)


1 Corinthians 15:3-11  For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;  (4)  And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:  (5)  And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:  (6)  After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.  (7)  After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.  (8)  And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.  (9)  For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.  (10)  But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowedupon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.  (11)  Therefore whether it were I or they, so we preach, and so ye believed.  (Paul was God’s choice.  Paul vindicated his apostleship because he was not numbered with the original 12 but was chosen by God for replacement of Judas.)

2 Timothy 1:1  Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus,

2 Timothy 1:11  Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.


C.  They Had A Special Position.

1.  They Were Chosen Special - Luke 6:13  And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles;

2.  They Were Chosen Specific – Matthew 10:2-4  Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus;  Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.

3.  Divinely Commissioned (with the Gospel)  Mark 16:14-15  Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.   And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

D.  They Had A Special Privilege

1.  Their Communion With Christ -  Luke 22:14-16  And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the twelve apostles with him.  And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer:  For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God.

2.  Their Comfort By Christ - Luke 24:30-36  And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them.  And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight.  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?  And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them,  Saying, The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon.  And they told what things were done in the way, and how he was known of them in breaking of bread.  And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

E.  They Had A Special Power

1.  Their Powerful Works - Mark 16:17-18  And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;  They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

2 Corinthians 12:12  Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds.

Acts 2:43  And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.

Matthew 10:8  Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.

Luke 9:51-54  And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem,  And sent messengers before his face: and they went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, to make ready for him.  And they did not receive him, because his face was as though he would go to Jerusalem.  And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did?

2.  Their Powerful Witness - Acts 4:33  And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.

Acts 2:14  But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:

Acts 4:5-8  And it came to pass on the morrow, that their rulers, and elders, and scribes,  And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem. And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this?  Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,

F.  They Had A Special Purpose

            1.  To Confirm The Promises To Israel

a)  As A Witness To Israel - Matthew 10:5-7  These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not:  But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.  And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.

b)  As A Witness Against Israel - Luke 11:47-51  Woe unto you! for ye build the sepulchres of the prophets, and your fathers killed them.  Truly ye bear witness that ye allow the deeds of your fathers: for they indeed killed them, and ye build their sepulchres.  Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they shall slay and persecute:  That the blood of all the prophets, which was shed from the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation;  From the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zacharias, which perished between the altar and the temple: verily I say unto you, It shall be required of this generation.

2.  To Carry The Promise Of Salvation To The Gentiles


Ephesians 3:1-9  For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles,  If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:  How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words,  Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)  Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;  That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:  Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power.  Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ;  And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Getting Back To The Basics

Temple Baptist Church - 7-2-2017
Psalm 33:12


Introduction: 

A.  Tuesday will be America’s 241st Birthday.  Our 200th Birthday, in 1976, seems like yesterday and it was a half of a lifetime ago.  Compared to many other nations, America is very young.  Yet, America is the Utopia of the world.  America is the greatest nation on the face of the earth.

B.  Our nation’s liberty was paid for at great price; our nation’s constitution was written by some of the wisest men on earth.  Our freedom is great, our natural resources are great, our bounty is great, our opportunities are great, our responsibilities are great.

C.  You and I have inherited a nation that was paid for by others.  It is a privilege to be called an American and it is a joy to have been born and lived here.

D.  I fear for our nation this morning.  In my lifetime, I have seen a dramatic shift in the direction that our nation has chosen.  From the “happy days,” the safe days of my youth to a dangerous day, a day that is perilous. 

2 Timothy 3:1  This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

E.  Our nation was founded by men and their families who left England, Europe, as well as other nations in search of a utopia which was framed in their minds.  They had little but expected much as they came to the “New World” in search of freedom and prosperity.  They carved out for us the greatest nation on the face of the earth.  Righteousness exalteth a nation!  America was once known for its integrity.

F.  We are so blessed and should be so thankful for the sacrifices of these pilgrims!  God bless the memories of those who made these blessings possible for us.  As we honor our parents for bringing us with integrity, may we honor our nation for giving to us what the rest of the world can only long for.

G.  America needs to get back to the basics that made America a great nation!

1.  The Principles Upon Which America Was Founded – Liberty and justice for all. 

a.  Men who could never be free left their homes and families that they might find freedom and liberty on foreign soil.  They bought and paid for our liberty through their foresight and sacrifice.  These are freedoms our Constitution upholds today for its citizens.  Now, let me say that these liberties do not belong to illegal migrants who refuse to honor our laws and come to America in the right way.

b.  We have liberty to worship; liberty of speech; liberty to travel; liberty to personally excel in life; liberty to be all that we can be.  We are free, praise the Lord, we are free!  “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty!”  Never let anyone take our freedom from us or our children.

2.  The Values That Our Forefathers Bore – They were honest and principled. 

a.  They were men of integrity and their word was their bond.  Their values were Bible based, even those who were not saved.  We call it “Old School” but its precepts are anchored deeply in biblical principles.  Our people were honest and hard working with no time for deadbeats.  Welfare, food stamps, etc. are for those who cannot word or have lost their jobs and was only intended to help while they were looking for another one!  No work, no right to eat!

b.  They had character instead of being characters.  They loved their families, their church, and their nation.  They were Americans and they were proud of it.  They stood, removed their hats, and placed their hands over their hearts when the National Anthem was played.

3.  The Courage Of Our Military To Die And Our People To Sacrifice – “Give me liberty or give me death” has been the motto of every American fighting man in all wars. 

a.  Countless millions have served in our nation’s military.  They lay behind the bodies of their dead brothers while the bullets whizzed past their heads and returned fire.  They still join up; they still fight; and they still die.  Their crosses are around the world from Normandy to the South Pacific to North Africa to Arlington National Cemetery where the Tomb of the Unknowns (also known as the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier) are engraved with these words:  “HERE RESTS IN HONORED GLORY AN AMERICAN SOLDIER KNOWN BUT TO GOD.” 

b.  The willingness of our nation to sacrifice – families have sacrificed their sons and daughters; they have sacrificed their moneys and possessions; they have sacrificed their personal desires for the betterment of the nation.  God bless and protect our military and law enforcement!

4.  The Diversity Of America’s People – The greatness of America is in its diversity! 

a.  We are not all the same but we all have the same rights.  We are not all the same but we accept and love those who are not like us.  Diverse cultures and ethnic backgrounds and yet united.  We are of every race and every creed; we are from every country on the face of the earth.  We do not look the same or act the same, but we all love the same!  We love America and are willing to both die and live for her.

b.  Immigrants who come to make something of their lives and better out nation are welcome.  Unless you are a native American, your people migrated to America and made it a better place to live.

5.  The Natural Resources That God Gave – God has given to our nation the capability to both be and remain self-sufficient. 

a.  From shore to shore and border to border, our nation is the most beautiful and blessed of all nations.  We are indebted to others because of greed, ignorance, and socialism.

b.  America is truly a nation flowing with milk and honey.  America has the capability to be self-sufficient.  We have all and abound!  We are blessed!

6.  The Benevolence Of America – In natural disasters as well as war and genocide, the United States of America is the first to respond. 

a.  We get relief and medical aid to other countries while other governments are thinking about it.  America gives many times what all the other nations give combined.  God blesses benevolence!  “It is more blessed to give than to receive” has always been America’s motto.

b.  America has become the protector of the world.  Our military has fought for the liberty of nations that could not protect themselves. 

7.  The System Of Government That We Have – America was founded as a republic, not a democracy! 

a.  Three branches of government set up with checks and balances that keep us both safe and directed.  Every two years we have elections to correct the mistakes that we made in the last elections.  Both veto power and the power to overcome veto! 

b.  A democracy is mob rule while a republic protects the rights of all people including minorities.  The men who set up our government had divine foresight.  What a magnificent piece of legislative work our Constitution is!  Wise men made sure that we remain both free and prosperous.

8.  The Love Of America For Israel – “And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” 

a.  God still blesses those who bless Israel and He still curses those who curse Israel.  To this point, we have stood with God’s covenant people and God has blessed us for it. 

b.  There is a large anti-Semitic movement across this land.  I love Irael and pray for God’s covenant people.  To America I say, “Hang on to Israel’s coat tails, America, hang on!”

9.  The Possibility Of Impossibility – Young man, young lady, you can be anything that you want to be. 

a.  You can be a doctor, a lawyer, a business owner, or any other thing that you wish.  You can excel both in school and the work place.  You can go to college, work in the career of your choice, start your own business, and be the president of the United States of America. 

b.  You are limited only by the limitations that you place on yourself!  Have pride in a right way.  Dream your dreams.  America was built by dreamers.  Dream your dreams, plan your dreams, they work out your dreams.

10.  The God Who Gave Her Birth – America is blessed because “In God We Trust” is still on our money and in the hearts of most. 

a.  The blessed gospel is allowed to be preached and missionaries are being sent around the world.  Psalms 33:12says,  “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.” 

b.  May God bless our nation!  May we bless God for His blessings upon us!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

The Unbelieving Husband

Temple Baptist Church - 6-28-2017
1 Peter 3:1-6


Introduction: 

A.  It needs to be noted that the first word of chapter 3 ties it to its continuing context.  The context is suffering in righteousness! 

1.  One of the worst fears of parenting is for their children to marry wrong.  We train them, pray for them, guide them, and are there for them but the final choice belongs to them.  Our text deals with the saved wife and unbelieving husband in the same home. 

2.  This works both ways: either to marry wrong or to have either a husband or wife who is out of the will of God: either saved or lost.  There is virtually nothing worse than a spiritually divided home.  I have tried to help many ladies whose husband is not right with the Lord but have also had to try to help men whose wife isn’t right.

B.  God is interested in the spiritual welfare of our homes.  God established marriage and marriage that follows the Word of God works.  But, often the spiritual condition of the home is divided becomes a two-way street: one going one direction while the other goes the opposite direction.  God sets forth a way to win your mate without spiritual warfare within the home.

C.  The world has put forth much “humor” concerning the divided home and how to deal with it in a carnal sense: AND, yes, I copied some of it.

1. Years ago, while Mark Twain was speaking in Utah, he got into an argument with a fellow over the issue of polygamy. The fellow said to him, “Can you give me a single passage of Scripture which forbids a man to have more than one wife?” Twain quickly responded, “Yes, ‘No man can serve two masters’.”

2. Someone has observed that “when a man and a woman are married, they become one. The trouble starts when they try to decide which one.” Another individual once said, “Marriage is nature’s way of keeping people from fighting with strangers.”

D.  Enough of that.  God designed marriage to be unity, not division.  It takes cooperation not conflict.  It is to be friendship, not a fight.  Peter is now giving instruction to both wives and husbands on how to have peace within the home through Christian behavior.

E.  Peter deals first with the more common situation: a believing wife with an unbelieving husband, whether he is and unbeliever who is lost or a saved unbeliever who chooses to rebel against God’s Word and ways.

F.  How to win your husband without war.  The Russian author, Leo Tolstoy, wrote a book titled “War and Peace.”  I should have titled this as “Peace without War.”  The biblical context is not demeaning to the wife but reveals the dignity, strength, and power of a godly one.

G.  In our text, God is giving us guidelines for both keeping peace in a divided home and possibility winning our spouses to the Lord.

1.  Stay With Them – vs 1 “to your own husband”  That means you are there!  If you leave, you will probably never win your husband.

Romans 12:18  If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.

1 Corinthians 7:10-11  And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from herhusband:  (11)  But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife.

2.  Be In Submission To The Husband's Authority – vs 1 “be in subjection”

Ephesians 5:22-24  Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  (23)  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.  (24)  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

3.  Do Not Preach To Your Husband – 1 “without the word”  Three times the Bible commands the woman to be quiet in the New Testament:

a.  Concerning Tongues in the church – 1 Corinthians 14:34-35  Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.  And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church. 

b.  Concerning preaching or teaching men in the church - 1 Timothy 2:12  But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.

c.  Concerning the divided home - 1 Peter 3:1  Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;

4.  Live A Separated, Holy Life-  vs 2-4 “chaste conversation”

a.   It Is An Inward Holiness – vs 3-4 - 2 Peter 3:11  Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,

b.   It Manifests Itself In An Outward Holiness - vs 2 - 1 Timothy 2:8-10  I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.  In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;  But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.

1 Peter 2:12  Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.

5.  Live In Fear Of The Lord – vs 2 “coupled with fear”

a.  Fear Of The Lord Brings Reward - Proverbs 22:4  By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, and honour, and life.

b.  Fear Of The Lord Brings Refuge - Proverbs 14:26  In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence: and his children shall have a place of refuge.

6.  Do Not Be Hypocritical - 3-4a

2 Timothy 1:5  When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also.

7.  Have A Meek And Quiet Spirit - 4b

1 Thessalonians 4:11a  And that ye study to be quiet … 

8.  Learn To Trust God With The Situation – 5  You cannot work in his heart.  Don't try to do God's work.

Isaiah 12:2  Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and mysong; he also is become my salvation. 

9.  Reverence Your Husband – vs 6 “calling him lord”  Notice the little “L”

Ephesians 5:33  Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.