The Christian life is a life of abounding joy in the Lord Jesus Christ. We’re to rejoice in the Lord always. I believe in a life of joy. However, the Christian life is also one of tears—a life of a broken heart. Solomon wrote, “There is a time to laugh and a time to weep.” In keeping with the urgency of this hour, in Australia we need to be weeping.
Jesus was a man of abounding joy, yet He was also a man of tears. He wept in sympathy at the grave of Lazarus. He wept in agony in the Garden of Gethsemane. He wept tears of urgency on the Mount of Olives. His followers too should shed tears of sympathy, agony, and urgency because of the day in which we live. Jesus had a heart for people. He loved people. In the last week of His life, we find Him in tears. He knew what lay ahead…not just His crucifixion, but the future for those who rejected God’s offer of salvation. Luke 19:37 recounts the scene on Palm Sunday. Entering Jerusalem for His last week on earth, He comes over the brow of the Mount of Olives. About halfway down, while people are shouting “Glory to God, hallelujah, amen,” Jesus stops and begins to weep (the Greek word means openly, convulsively, heaving in sorrow) over Jerusalem. And when He was come nigh, even now at the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, saying, “Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord; peace in heaven, and glory in the highest.”…He…beheld the city, and wept over it, saying, “If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things that belong unto thy peace! But now they are hid from thine eyes, for the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, and shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another, because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.” And He went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold therein, and them that bought, saying unto them, “It is written, My house is the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.” Luke 19:37-46 Three things caused Him to weep—and they ought to cause us to weep. Again, I believe in joy, but I believe we need to take time out for tears.
Jesus wept because of their superficial religion. They’re praising God, but in a few days the same crowd would be saying “Crucify Him.” As He stopped, Jesus looked down upon that magnificent temple. As the sun would come over the brow of the Mount of Olives and shine upon that temple, it was a breathtaking sight—standing like a mountain of snow. It was indeed the house of God, but it had become a den of thieves. No wonder Jesus wept. He said,“Many will say unto Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name? And in Thy name have cast out devils? And in Thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, depart from Me, ye that work [look at this] iniquity. I never knew you”(Matthew 7:22) He called their false praying, their false preaching, their false power, their false performance “iniquity.” Not merely useless, but iniquitous. Jesus would weep over our superficial religion in Australia. Most Aussies do not need religion; they need to turn from religion to Christ.
Jesus wept because of their passing opportunity. If thou hadst known… thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.” (Luke 19:41) “If you only knew the opportunity you have right now.” They should have known. It was harvest time. But they were blind to it, deaf to it. The Son of God was there, and they were blind to blessing and deaf to danger. God has harvest times, but harvest times pass. They don’t last forever. Jeremiah, the weeping prophet, wept like Jesus. Jeremiah warned his people about God’s coming judgment, but the good times were rolling. Nobody listened; they laughed him to scorn. But the day came when the Babylonian army surrounded Jerusalem, cut off the people from their fields of ripening food, and laid siege to Jerusalem. Starvation stalked the city. When Jeremiah saw the harvest in the fields rotting and people inside the city starving, he said, “The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved” (8:20). It was too late. As in Noah’s day, there was a season of opportunity. When a harvest is neglected, it passes—then judgment comes. We have more opportunities, more ability to preach, more tools, than any generation ever had, but we are letting this harvest pass. I marvel at the patience God has had with Australia. I marvel that the wrath of God has not yet descended. I wonder when it is going to happen and how quickly it will happen. Opportunity is not all that will pass. Holy Spirit conviction passes. Don’t get the idea that anyone can just saunter into the presence of God. Jesus said, “No man can come unto Me except the Father, which hath sent Me, draw him” (John 6:44). And “My Spirit will not always strive with a man”(Gen. 6:3). The Holy Spirit can be so neglected, so insulted, that He ceases to strive. “Seek ye the Lord while He may be found; call ye upon Him while He is near” (Isaiah 55:6). This was their golden opportunity. Jesus said, “If you only knew the things that belong to you in this your day.” Friend, this is your day! This is your opportunity! Life passes and it passes quickly. If you’re going to be saved, the only time you’re going to be saved is in this life. The fact of death is certain. The time of death is uncertain. There are souls in hell who would give a million worlds like this one to have the opportunity some of you have right now not only to get saved but to be soul winners, to serve the Lord Jesus Christ. All the souls you’ll ever win for all eternity, you win this side of eternity.
Jesus wept because of their smoldering judgment. “For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast up a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, and lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another, because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation”(v.43). Looking 35 short years into the future, Jesus saw Titus and the Roman army coming against Jerusalem! They crucified Jews until there were no more trees left in the forest to crucify people with. That beautiful temple that had become a den of thieves was leveled to the ground. Historians estimate one million Jews died in the siege. Jesus sat upon that little colt on the Mount of Olives, looking down upon that city, heartbroken. “O, people of Jerusalem, if you only knew.” Our nation is ripe for judgment. Without a Holy Ghost revival, God has warned, “He being often reproved and hardeneth his neck shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy” (Proverbs 19:1). The answer is not in Washington but in God’s house with God’s people. Weep over lost souls. Live a life of joy, but take time out for tears. “He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.” (Psalm 126:6) May God forgive a dry-eyed church in a hell-bent world. You have lost family members, lost neighbors, business associates that are superficially religious. They have an opportunity they’re oblivious to. Judgment for them and for Australia may be much closer than we realize. Not everyone will be saved. Not every seed will sprout. Keep sowing the seed. Keep watching…working…praying …weeping. You’ll have a harvest. We need to be so full of Jesus that the things that break the heart of Jesus will break our heart. Take time out for tears.
“And the Lord said unto Joshua, Fear not, neither be thou dismayed: take all the people of war with thee, and arise, go up to Ai: see, I have given into thy hand the king of Ai, and his people, and his city, and his land.” Joshua 8:1
Someone reading this article—it may be you—has failed the Lord, and you think perhaps God is finished with you.
In Joshua 8:1 we read that, coming off the incredible victory over Jericho, God’s people Israel met a stunning defeat against the small city of Ai, because there was sin in the camp. The sin was discovered and dealt with, but Joshua was dejected—even though he had not been personally responsible. God said to Joshua in this passage, “I’m giving you another chance. I’m giving you another day.” I want to tell you, God is no more finished with you than God was finished with the children of Israel just because they sinned. God wants to give you another chance.
God is the God of the second chance. God is the God of grace. He is a God of forgiveness, of beginning again. Failures are neither fatal nor final as long as there’s a God in heaven. But you may be saying today, as David confessed to Nathan the prophet, “I am the man!” You may have failed and you acknowledge your failure. Some people, because they have failed, just simply quit. They go around moaning, groaning saying, “What a fool I was.” Change that! It is not “over” for you. Say “What a fool I am to keep saying what a fool I was.” Listen, friend, the Bible says we are to “forget those things which are behind.” What are some of the things that are behind? Both past guilt and past glory!
Past Glory Needs To Be Left Behind If you camp out in “Past Gloryland,” you’ll find the Pillar of Cloud by day and the Pillar of Fire by night (God’s presence with His people) has moved on and now you are left behind!
Past Guilt Needs To Be Left Behind In our Joshua passage, early in Israel’s history as a nation, the guilt was the greed and theft committed by Achan. Forget your success at Jericho and your failure at Ai. Confess your failure to God, leave it at the Cross—and press on. There’s a land out there to be conquered, and the same God who wants to give you a second chance will give you a second chance.
God is the Giver of Second Chances He gave Samson another chance, didn’t He? Remember how Samson got his hair cut in the devil’s barber shop? He lost his power and utterly failed to be the judge in Israel he had been chosen to be. Yet Samson said, “Oh God, hear me one more time!” And he was more victorious in his death than he was in his life.
God gave Jacob a second chance. Remember that Jacob went to Bethel and there he met the Lord. He saw a ladder descending out of heaven. He made vows to God. Then later on he got away from God. But the Bible says he went back to Bethel. God gave him a second chance. God gave John Mark a second chance. The apostle Paul gave up on Mark. He said, “Mark’s been a failure—he’s been a deserter.” Mark even caused a rift between Paul and Barnabas! (Acts 15:39) Yet God gave Mark a second chance. In later years Paul wrote to Timothy, “Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the ministry” (2 Timothy 4:11). Not only that, God gave him the privilege of writing the Gospel of Mark. God gave Peter a second chance. Simon Peter cursed, swore and denied Christ in the darkest hour of His life, and yet Simon Peter was a great preacher on the day of Pentecost. For Paul, it was hunting down and murdering Christians. It’s difficult to commit a “failure” that surpasses that. Aren’t you glad that God is the God of a second chance? Bring your failure to Him. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 If you confess your sin, He will forgive your sin. He will give you a brand new start. And after you get this new start, you may serve Him better than ever because you’ve learned a lesson. You’ve known the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. Now you’re ready to serve the Lord with power that you never had before. Lamentations 3:22-23 may be a word from God for you today:
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. Aren’t you glad that His compassions fail not? They are new every morning! Aren’t you glad that regardless of what happened yesterday, today is “the day the Lord hath made”? Aren’t you glad He is the God of the second chance? He is the God of a fresh start. There is something about the nature and character of God revealed in Joshua 8:1. Don’t miss it. The God who judges failure is also the God who is willing to forgive sin when it’s confessed, repented of, repudiated and put away.
God will give you a second chance.
The noose is tightening. The war is getting hotter. If our Lord tarries, you’re going to have to stand alone and teach your children to stand alone. They’re going to face a world different from even the one we’re living in. And I pray God they’ll be ready for it. In the 4th century, an early Christian leader named Athanasius was confronted by the Roman emperor Theodosius. Athanasius was a bold, strong Christian who stood firm in his beliefs when others called him arrogant, stubborn, and narrow-minded. The emperor said to him, “Athanasius, the whole world is against you.” He replied, “Then Athanasius is against the whole world.” It takes courage to stand alone, but more and more it will be necessary. And if necessary now as the days get darker—in your office, your neighborhood, your community—how much more so will it be for your children? You must learn to stand alone, not out of stubbornness, arrogance, or narrow-mindedness, but for Jesus and the principles of God’s Word, for that which is true and will last throughout eternity. And teach your children to stand. Daniel 3 tells the familiar story of three young Jewish men thrown into a fiery furnace. They wouldn’t budge, they wouldn’t bow, and we found out they wouldn’t burn. They came out of that furnace. We all rejoice. But the Bible is not just a record of what God has done and has said; it is a record of what God is doing and is saying. They lived under Nebuchadnezzar, a king illustrating the coming Antichrist ruling during the Tribulation. But today before the Antichrist arrives, the “spirit of Antichrist” is already permeating every aspect of our culture. “Little children, it is the last time. And as ye have heard that Antichrist shall come, even now there are many antichrists” (I John 2:28).
The Fury They Faced Social pressure: “Everybody” was worshipping the image (Daniel 3:2-3). Today people are under incredible pressure to conform. If you don’t fall in line, you’re looked upon as an oddball.
Government enforcement. “And whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace” (v. 6). You’re going to face that too. We’re moving quickly to a one-world government. The Australia we’ve known is being diluted and absorbed into a globalism spurred on by those who will not stand for what is right. Determined to make everyone conform, government more and more says, “We will arrest you for contempt of court,” or “We will take away your tax-exempt status because you’re in the way of progress.” Jesus said that in the last days, those who kill you will think they do God a service (John 16:2). When you stand and say “The Bible says this is wrong and this is right,” you will be persecuted—or accused of “hate speech.”
Diabolical purpose: The deadly power behind all this is Satan. Learn this about the devil: he does not want casualties, he wants converts: “And whoever does not fall down and worship…” (Daniel 3:6). The devil wants worship; Antichrist will want to be worshipped (Revelation13:7-8). That’s what we’re up against. Satan is behind all this.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused to bow to this pressure. Soon you’ll find yourself in some incendiary circumstance where, like these young men, you’ll have to stand alone. What will enable you? What enabled them? What will empower your children in the coming dark days?
The Faith They Followed
Theirs was a settled faith. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter…. our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.” (v. 16-18)
They’re saying, “We don’t have to get in a huddle. We don’t we don’t have to ponder it. We don’t we don’t have to say, ‘Now, king, give us a night to sleep on it.’ We don’t have to have a committee meeting.” They had God’s word hidden in their hearts. They already knew what was right. When you make a decision—when you say, “This is right and this is wrong,” then when you are challenged, you say, “I don’t have to think about it.” Their faith was settled.
The average carnal Christian would say, “When in Babylon, do as the Babylonians do. Go along to get along. Better to compromise a little bit here and live a little longer so you can do some more good, than simply be stubborn. Christians are supposed to get along with everybody and everything. So don’t stand alone.” But these men did and how did they do it? Their settled faith.
It was a strong faith. “Our God is able” (v. 17). You must believe that. When the enemy says “Who is that God that shall deliver thee?” you must believe there is a God who said, “Call upon Me in the day of trouble, and I will deliver thee” (Psalm 50:15). That’s the word of a holy God. He will deliver us. If He doesn’t deliver us through the fire, He’ll deliver us in the fire. But He will deliver us.
It was a steadfast faith. Now here’s something very interesting. In verse 18 they say, “But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”
“God is able to deliver us. We don’t have any doubt about that. And He will deliver us, no doubt about that. But if not, we’re not going to serve your gods. We’re not going to worship your image. When you throw us like chips of wood into a fiery furnace, if we’re consumed, fine. We’re still not going to worship your god.”
They have no doubt about God’s power. Does your faith have an ‘if not’ clause? “Our God is able to deliver us.” We all like that. “But if He doesn’t,” are you still going to serve Him? In His sovereignty God might have let these boys die in the flames. You can die in the flames. Now we’re getting down to the nitty-gritty. Hebrews 11:32-34 speaks of one miracle deliverance after another. We love the stories of Daniel and the lion’s den, David and Goliath, our Lord raising the dead and healing the sick, Peter coming out of prison. If it stopped there, we’d say, “Great! Victory after victory!” But it doesn’t. And others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. And others had a trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; (of whom the world was not worthy) they wandered in deserts in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth. These all, having obtained a good report through faith. (v. 35-39)
It’s one thing to have faith to escape. It’s another to have faith to endure. It’s one thing to have faith to be healed. It’s another to not be healed and still praise God. It’s one thing to be delivered. It’s another to die. You say, “If they’d just had enough faith, they’d have been delivered.” No. These got A+ on the report card through faith, and they were not delivered in the way you and I would call deliverance. That takes greater faith.
God is sovereign; He knows what’s best. He may not always deliver you from your trials. If He doesn’t, what are you to do? Stand by faith. Faith is not primarily receiving from God what you want. It is accepting from God what He gives.
Do you have a fairytale faith? Somehow at the last moment the Lone Ranger is going to come riding over the hill and deliver you? There is a God in heaven who is going to take care of you in the fire, through the fire.
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation or distress or persecution or famine or nakedness or peril or sword? As it is written, For Thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.” Romans 8:35
The world will start respecting the Lord Jesus Christ when you and I, by the grace of God, stand alone. Teach your children, because the spirit of Antichrist is already in the world.
Suppose you’re running a 100-yard dash. You’re in the starting blocks. The gun fires and you start out running. You’re 10 yards ahead of everybody else. You’re three feet from the goal! But you quit.
I don’t care how far ahead you are, you just lost the race.
You’re always a failure if you quit. You’re never a failure until you quit. Thank God the apostle Paul never stopped running! Under house arrest in Rome, he wrote: 7But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. 8Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; 10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,… 12 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfected; but I follow after, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:7-14
Try to visualize the apostle Paul as he penned these words…a man who had a prison record, his body bearing the marks of three shipwrecks, a body that was pickled as he languished in the Mediterranean for 36 long hours, scarred from 195 stripes laid on his back. And yet he is still running the race saying, “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfected; but I follow after…” (v. 12) “I haven’t reached the goal,” Paul says. “I’m not mature yet, but I’m not going to quit. I follow after.” Look at verse 12 where he says “I follow after” (other translations, press on). The word in the original language means “relentlessly pursue.” The idea is determination. His eye is on the goal. He is straining every nerve, every sinew. He doesn’t have a “take it or leave it” attitude. He’s not quitting; he’s pressing on. Here is what Paul said about himself in 2 Corinthians 4:8: “We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; We are persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.” Paul learned through hard-won experience that there is “trouble on every side.” He wrote to the Christians in Rome: “And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope…” Romans 5:3-4 The word patience here is the word or endurance or perseverance. One translation says, “Brings about perseverance.” Another says, “Produces endurance,” that courageous endurance which enables us to keep on going without quitting. Paul was an endurance runner. He was the “Ironman” of the early church. Tribulation is here to teach us patience if we will submit to its work and not rebel. A crisis will not automatically make you a better person; it will reveal what you are made of. Then, if you will allow it—and not quit—it will do its work. William Barclay describes this kind of endurance and patience this way: It is not the patience that can sit down and bow its head and let things descend upon it and passively endure until the storm has passed. It is the spirit that can bear things not simply with resignation, but with blazing hope. It is not the spirit that sits statically enduring in one place, but the spirit that bears things, because it knows that these things are leading to a goal of glory. It is not patience that grimly waits for the end, but patience which radiantly hopes for the dawn.
How Not to Quit Some of you used to be deacons, or served in a ministry, or taught a class, or worked with youth, but you quit. Some of you may be on the verge of quitting. But what should you do? Don’t give way to discouragement and despondency. Depend upon the Lord Jesus Christ. Ask for wisdom. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally and upbraideth not, and it shall be given.” James 1:5
So many times when tribulation comes we say, “Lord, take it away.” But our first prayer, instead of “Lord, take it away,” ought to be “Lord, give me wisdom. What is it, God, that I’m supposed to learn in this situation?”
Don’t waste your sorrows. If God is bringing those things into your life to mature you, then pray, “Lord, teach me to endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.” Ask God to give you wisdom to pass the test so He won’t have to keep giving it. He’s not going to flunk you out. He’s going to re-enroll you! He’s going to keep on giving the test. The fruit of that will be maturity and patience, from which will come the strength to finish your race.
You don’t have to be in great physical, financial, or intellectual shape to run this race. You can be an all-star athlete at 90. When Paul said, “I press on,” he was a battered old apostle. Writing under house arrest, near the end of his ministry, he was still running. You can run even from a sick bed. Surrounding you, a great cloud of witnesses testify that they ran their race and never quit. Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us…. Hebrews 12:1 Joni Eareckson Tada is running from her wheelchair. Billy Graham, in his 90s, is faithfully running his race. Anyone can. But you dare not quit. “…Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith.” Hebrews 12:2a
Mark 10:17-27 PROUD MEN AT THEIR BEST ARE SINNERS AT THEIR WORST. (Mark 10:17)
The rich young ruler has many admirable qualities.
Enthusiastic Humble Discerning Spiritually minded
Morally clean Mark 10:19-20
Successful Matthew 19:21
Jesus did not flatter the young man.
Mark 10:18 Jesus was teaching the young man two things in this passage. The young man was not good. Romans 3:10-12 Jesus Himself is God. We can’t just tip the hat to Jesus; we must bow the knee.
God is a God of mercy, but He will by no means clear the guilty. Exodus 34:7 If God were to clear the guilty, God Himself would become guilty.
The worst form of badness is human goodness when human goodness becomes a substitute for the new birth.
GOD’S PERFECT LAW CONDEMNS MAN’S SINFUL PRIDE. (Mark 10:19-21)
God is a holy God and a holy God must have holy laws.
Jesus is not teaching salvation by commandment-keeping; He’s teaching the exact opposite.
Commandment-keeping has never saved anybody Galatians 2:16 Romans 3:20
God gave us the law to let us know that we are sinners.
The definition of sin is found in 1 John 3:4. “Whosever committeth sin transgresseth also the law, for sin is the transgression of the law.” Sin is breaking God’s law.
We need the law to see that we are sinners in need of a Savior. `Luke 5:32
When a man has been wounded by God’s law, then he is ready for the healing balm of salvation.
The young man did not understand that law is spiritual. Romans 7:14 Matthew 5:27-28 Matthew 5:21-22
Jesus saw the heart of the young man and that money was his idol. Mark 10:21
The law can be summarized into one statement: Love God and love your neighbor. Luke 12:30-31 The young man loved his money more than God. The young man loved his money more than his neighbors. The young man had broken the entire law with just one sin: greed. James 2:10
NO MAN CAN SERVE TWO MASTERS, BUT HE MUST SERVE ONE. (Mark 10:21)
The young man had an idol in his heart. Mark 10:23-24
An idol is whatever we love more, serve more, trust more, or fear more than God.
The young man needed to repent and turn from his idol. 1 Thessalonians 1:9 Matthew 6:24
What is repentance? Repentance is a change of mind that leads to a change of life. Mark 1:15 Mark 6:12 Acts 2:38 Acts 3:19 Luke 24:46-47 Acts 17:30 Acts 20:21 Luke 13:3
WHATEVER MASTER A MAN CHOOSES WILL MASTER THAT MAN. (Mark 10:21)
Repentance cannot exist without faith.
When we turn from sin we turn towards Jesus. Romans 10:9
Mark 10:22 is one of the saddest verses in the Bible.
The young man is given a choice between his possessions and Jesus.
Every man has three opportunities to go to Heaven.
To die before the age of accountability.
Perfectly keep all of the law. This is really hypothetical because it cannot be done.
Repent and come to Jesus. Acts 16:31
When we repent and come to Jesus, we should not be ashamed and we should do it today. Mark 8:38 2 Corinthians 6:2 Hebrew 3:15
The world’s biggest liar is Satan himself.
In the Gospel of John, Jesus warns us of Satan’s ways. John 8:44 John 10:10
Satan’s motive is murder. He wants to bring physical, spiritual and eternal death.
Satan’s method is the lie. He wants to deceive, to deprave and to destroy. Satan lies about the biggest subject; the biggest subject is God. Revelation 12:9
Genesis 3 records the first lie ever told. Satan uses the same devices today as he used against Eve in the Garden of Eden in order to deceive us into believing lies about God.
SPIRITUAL FLAW #1 TO DESPISE GOD’S GOODNESS AND TO THINK NEGATIVELY ABOUT GOD (Genesis 3:1)
Satan will attempt to get us to doubt God’s goodness and love.
This is slander against the character of God.
Satan’s query in Genesis 3:1 was his way of saying that God is not good; that God did not want Eve to have all of the good fruit in the Garden. When, in fact, God had said in Genesis 2:16 that she could eat of every tree of the Garden except one.
God is not cruel. The truth is that God desires for us to have pleasure and fulfillment Psalm 37:4 Psalm 84:11 1 Timothy 6:17
Anything in this life that causes pain and suffering is the fruit of sin, which began with man’s choice in the Garden of Eden.
SPIRITUAL FLAW #2 TO DENY GOD’S TRUTHFULNESS AND TO THINK SKEPTICALLY ABOUT GOD (Genesis 3:2-4)
Satan questions God’s truthfulness; his desire is that we become doubters of God.
In today’s culture, we have substituted many ideals for God’s absolute truth:
Relativism there are no absolutes.
Subjectivism what truth means to me.
Rationalism empirical truth; truth must be observed.
Pragmatism does it work?
Post-modernism there is no truth. Psalm 11:3
SPIRITUAL FLAW #3 TO DEFY GOD’S RIGHTEOUSNESS AND TO THINK CARELESSLY ABOUT GOD (Gen 3:4)
Satan, in essence, told Eve not to worry about God’s judgment or God’s laws; that there was no reason to fear God.
We must remember that God is righteous and God is holy.
Law without penalty is only advice; God will punish sin.
Satan does not want people to believe that there is a final death and judgment to face. Hence, we have substituted the truth of judgment with ideas such as reincarnation.
SPIRITUAL FLAW #4 – TO DEBASE GOD’S GREATNESS AND TO THINK SUSPICIOUSLY ABOUT GOD (Genesis 3:5)
Satan communicated to Eve that God could not be trusted. He also communicated to Eve that her eyes were not yet opened; that she had no experience to determine whether or not the thing was good or bad. We often hear today that experience is the best teacher.
The second deception Satan used in this passage was the temptation to be as God. Many religions today teach the same lie: that we and everything around us are gods.
There is a big difference in being like God and being as God. God’s plan is for us to be like Him. God made us in His image; and even though we are fallen, God is working toward that plan of conforming us into the image of His Son. Psalm 17:15
The way to overcome Satan is described in Revelation 12:11 “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.” Jesus paid the price for us on Calvary. We should not be ashamed to proclaim our faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. Mark 8:38 We should love our Lord Jesus Christ more than we love our own lives.
A SPECIAL PERSON
Isaac is a picture of Jesus.
His birth was prophesied. Genesis 18:9-14
His birth was preset. Genesis 18:10 Galatians 4:4
Genesis 17:19 Matthew 1:21 Isaiah 7:14
Isaac’s birth was prophesied just as Jesus’ birth.
Isaac’s name was given beforehand just as Jesus’ name was given.
Isaac was born of a miraculous conception just as Jesus’ was born of a virgin.
Isaac was counted as Abraham’s only beloved son. Genesis 22:1-3 John 3:16
Abraham saw Isaac raised from the dead figuratively. Genesis 22:4 Hebrews 11:19
A SPECIFIC PLACE (Genesis 22:2-4)
God chose the place where Isaac would be sacrificed specifically.
The name of the mountain is Moriah which means, “Foreseen of the Lord.”
The most significant thing about Mt. Moriah is that it is the same mountain that Christ was crucified on. Mt. Moriah is Calvary. Luke 23:33
A SOLEMN PURPOSE (Genesis 22:2, 7-10)
Isaac was not forced to be the sacrifice.
Isaac laid down his life willingly. Matthew 26:39
Isaac carried the wood for the burnt offering just like Jesus carried the cross. John 19:17
The cord speaks of the binding power of sin.
The knife speaks of the bleeding power of sin.
The wood speaks of the burning power of sin.
A SACRED PROMISE (Genesis 22:11-14)
The scene shifts and Isaac is no longer a picture of Jesus, but becomes a picture of us.
The ram is caught by its horns in thorns. It is a picture of a Lamb crowned with thorns.
God provided the lamb for Abraham, and God provided the Lamb for us. John 8:56 Galatians 3:8
God is our provider.
He has provided for our greatest need: our need for a Savior.
He provides all of our other needs in life.
He has given us everything so we should give it all back to Him. Romans 8:32
Luke 2:10-11 Acts 2:36
We each need to ask ourselves the following questions:
Do I believe that Jesus Christ is Lord?
Is He my Lord? Is He Lord of my time? Is He Lord of my tongue? Is He Lord of my treasure?
Is He Lord of my talents? Is He Lord of my testimony?
In the New Testament, Jesus is referred to as “Lord” far more often than He is referred to as “Savior”; He is called “Lord” 747 times in the New Testament. Acts 2:36
We do not “make” Jesus Lord; He is already Lord.
The question is: Will I submit to His Lordship? In Biblical times, when a Jew reading the Scriptures came to the word that is translated “LORD”, he would bow his head and worship; he would not even pronounce the word for he held it in such awe. When a scribe was translating the Scriptures and he came across the word for “LORD”, he would put down his old pen and get a new pen just to write that word. Acts 4:12
THE CONFESSION OF HIS LORDSHIP SECURES SALVATION (Luke 2:10-11)
We cannot receive what Jesus gives and refuse who Jesus is. Jesus is Lord.
Our great need is salvation; so God sent Jesus Christ to pay the penalty for our sins.
We cannot receive God’s gift of salvation if we do not receive Jesus as Lord.
To understand who Jesus Christ is, we need to lay aside our intellectual pride and ask God to reveal to us the truth.
Romans 10:9-10 Romans 14:9
We receive God’s gift of salvation when we receive Jesus as Lord.
THE CONFESSION OF CHRIST AS LORD SIMPLIFIES SERVICE (Luke 2:17)
We cannot confess Him as Lord and serve any other master. There is only one question we need to ask after we have received Jesus as Lord, Master, and Savior of our lives: Lord, what would You have me to do?
The best advice anyone ever gave to another person was the advice Mary gave to the servants at the wedding feast in Cana: to do whatever Jesus says to do. John 2:5 Matthew 6:24
When we submit to Christ as Lord, that does not mean that we submit to Christ AND anything or someone else: it is not Christ and self; it is not Christ and the world. It is Christ only. Luke 9:57-62 Matthew 6:33
THE CONFESSION OF CHRIST AS LORD SUBDUES SATAN (Luke 2:10-11)
We need not fear what Satan does when we know who Jesus is.
There is one fear that removes all other fears, and that is the fear of God.
Jesus’ sacrifice upon the cross brought Satan’s kingdom crashing down.
It’s not enough that we not fear Satan; as followers of Christ, he should fear us.
Jesus took on flesh and blood so that He might become a sacrifice for us upon the cross.
One day, each of us will confess that Jesus is Lord.
We need to confess His Lordship now, while we have the opportunity in this life.
Who was the child born in Bethlehem on Christmas Day? There are many wrong answers and only one right answer.
Many say that Jesus was a great man and a moral teacher. Others believe that Jesus was a prophet of God.
We need to understand that Jesus is more than a great man, a moral teacher, or a prophet; Jesus is God in human flesh. Not only is He the Son of God; Jesus is God the Son.
The doctrine of the Trinity is the great Christian distinctive: one God in three persons.
God the Father and God the Son are described the same way in Scripture. Exodus 3:14 John 8:56-58
The Holy Spirit is not an influence emanating from God the Father; He is God. Ephesians 4:30 Acts 5:3-4
THE UNFATHOMABLE MYSTERY OF THE TRINITY 1 Timothy 3:16
The mystery of the Trinity cannot be understood; it must be believed.
There are many things in the natural realm we do not understand, as well.
People often use illustrations to try to describe the Trinity, but there is only one God and there is nothing to compare Him to. Isaiah 40:18
We see reflections of His Trinity in everything: Time past, present, and future Space height, width, and depth
Each is distinguishable; all are inseparable. Isaiah 55:8-9
THE UNFOLDED MANIFESTATION OF THE TRINITY (Matthew 1:22-23)
The Trinity is revealed in the Old Testament. Genesis 1:1 The Hebrew word used here for God is “Elohim”, which is a plural noun. The writer of Genesis, through divine inspiration, used a singular verb with the plural noun.
This shows the triune God acting as a unity. Deuteronomy 6:4-5 When the writer stated, “Jehovah our Elohim is one Lord”, he used the word “echad” for the word “one”. The English translation of “echad” means a plural one.
Other examples in the Old Testament where “echad”, a plural one, is used: Genesis 2:24 Genesis 11:6 Numbers 13:23
Evidences of God the Son in the Old Testament. Daniel 3:25 Proverbs 30:4 Psalm 2:6-7 Isaiah 9:6 Isaiah 10:21
The Trinity is revealed in the New Testament. John 1:1-3 Matthew 28:19
THE UNCHANGING MINISTRY OF THE TRINITY (Matthew 1:20-23)
The Holy Trinity God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost work together in our salvation.
We are selected by the Father.
We are saved by the Son.
We are sealed by the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 13:14
Simeon was waiting for and ready for Christmas; he was anticipating the coming of Jesus Christ into this world.
There were many who missed the first coming of Jesus, that first Christmas morning, because they did not understand or believe the clear Bible prophecies of His first coming into the world. We need to be careful to not miss the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. We need to be ready for Christmas by being ready for the second coming of Jesus. We need to ask ourselves the following questions to determine if we’re ready for Christmas and the second coming of our Lord. They were true of Simeon; are they true of us?
Are you saved? Matthew 1:21 Luke 2:25 John 8:56
If we aren’t ready for Heaven before we die, then we won’t be ready for Heaven when we die.
Are you surrendered? Luke 2:25 1 John 3:3
Are you spiritual? Luke 2:25
Are you sensitive? Luke 2:26 Romans 8:14 Can God speak to you?
Are you satisfied? Luke 2:28-29 Do you have peace? Psalm 116:15
HE IS THE ONE WHO BRINGS DELIVERANCE (Luke 2:30-31)
Jesus came to deliver us. Jesus was born of a virgin that we might be born again.
We need to leave behind the sentimentality about a baby being born and understand that that baby is the Savior of the world.
HE IS THE ONE WHO DISPELS DARKNESS (Luke 2:32-33)
We will never understand the meaning of life until we know the Light of the world, Jesus Christ.
There is no greater joy than to know the Lord Jesus.
HE IS THE ONE WHO DETERMINES DESTINY (Luke 2:34)
Jesus will be to us either a stepping stone or a stumbling block; our destiny is determined by what we do with Him.
1 Peter 2:6-8 John 3:36
Jesus is unavoidable and inescapable; He will either be our Savior or our Judge.
HE IS THE ONE WHO PROVOKES DERISION (Luke 2:34)
Jesus faced derision, mockery and blasphemy.
Jesus was spoken against. And we can be certain that, as His disciples, we too will be mocked and spoken against.
Acts 4:12 John 14:6 Matthew 9:24
People today are still laughing Him to scorn. Matthew 5:11-12 Luke 6:26
HE IS THE ONE WHO CAUSES DIVISION (Luke 2:35)
Hebrews 4:12 Matthew 10:34-39 This does not mean that we are not to love our families. Jesus is to be preeminent in our lives; we are to love Him more than we love others. Amos 3:3 Matthew 7:22-23
Ultimately, we are all divided into only two categories: saved and lost.
HE IS THE ONE WHO REVEALS DECISIONS (Luke 2:35)
When we are exposed to the truth of God’s Word, some will determine to yield to God while others will choose not to accept Him. His Word reveals our hearts and our thoughts
The same Jesus who came to this world in the form of a baby, in literal fulfillment of Scripture, is coming again. Are you ready?
Luke 1 – 2
THE SACRED MYSTERY OF HIS BIRTH (Luke 1:31-38)
Mary did not understand how she would be pregnant with Jesus. Luke 1:34
The angel told her that nothing was impossible with God. Luke 1:37
We do not have to understand the virgin birth to validate it. God is not bound by the laws of nature.
The creation account in Genesis 1:1 is just as much a miracle.
When Jesus was born, it was the first time any angel or person had ever seen God. 1 Timothy 3:16
THE SAVING MINISTRY OF THE VIRGIN BIRTH (Luke 2:8-14)
We are all represented by one of two men: Adam or Jesus. 1 Corinthians 15:22
Apart from the virgin birth there is no hope for salvation.
Our sin debt had to be paid for with a perfect blood sacrifce. Romans 6:23 Ezekiel 18:20 Hebrews 9:22
God is spirit and doesn’t have blood. John 4:24
Jesus became human in order to provide that perfect blood sacrifice. Romans 5:12 Romans 3:23 John 3:16 Acts 20:28
Jesus was 100% God and 100% man which makes Him the only one qualified to die for our sins. Luke 2:10
THE SOVREIGN MAJESTY OF HIS BIRTH (Luke 1:30-33)
Jesus’ virgin birth solidified His reign as the one true King. Hebrews 1:8 Isaiah 9:6
Jesus’ beginning was not in Bethlehem, but rather He has always existed with the Father. John 1:1-3
The world is coming to Jesus, one way or another.
Jesus became the Son of Man, born of a virgin, so that we could become the sons and daughters of God.
He took our iniquity and paid the price. Isaiah 53:6
He not only took our sins, but He has given us His righteousness. Acts 16:31
THE TRUTH ABOUT THE SINNER’S BASIC PROBLEM (John 16:9)
Man is a sinner because of what he is. Ephesians 2:3
We are sinners not only for what we have done but for what we are capable of doing.
Man is a sinner because of what he has done. Romans 3:23 Exodus 20:17
God doesn’t grade on the curve.
Man is a sinner because of what he has not done. John 16:8-9
Unbelief is man’s greatest sin. Hebrews 3:12 John 3:18 Romans 8:1
THE TRUTH ABOUT THE SAVIOR’S BOUNTIFUL PROVISION (John 16:10)
Jesus came not to heal or teach primarily but to save the lost. Luke 19:10
Jesus came to provide righteousness for sinners. Romans 10:3
If we could be saved by works, then why did Jesus die? Galatians 2:21 Isaiah 64:6
What happens when Jesus saves us?
He changes what we are. 2 Corinthians 5:17
He forgives what we’ve done.
He gives what we need. Romans 4:5-6 Romans 3:10
THE TRUTH ABOUT SATAN’S BROKEN POWER (John 16:11)
Satan has been judged already. John 12:31
Hell has been prepared for the devil and his angels.
When we trust in our own self-righteousness we become more like Satan.
In the judicial system, judgment immediately follows the crime. However, Jesus has placed His righteousness in between our sin and judgment.
Worship is enjoying the presence of God.
Some of the most frightening words in the Bible are found in Exodus 33:1-3, where God gave the children of Israel His protection, provision, and His promise, but not His presence.
Moses was upon Mt. Sinai to receive the Ten Commandments from the Lord. Exodus 32:4-10
While Moses was gone, his brother Aaron led the people in a revolt against God.
The people gave Aaron their bracelets and earrings, out of which Aaron made a golden calf that the people worshiped. Exodus 32:30-32
Due to their sin, the Lord decided to remove His presence from them. He would give the people His protection and provision, He would fulfill His promise to give them the land of Canaan, but He would not go with them into the land. Exodus 33:1-4
Many Christians today do not have the conscious presence of God in their lives.
We should not settle for God’s protection, His provision, or even the Promised Land, without His presence. When we have the presence of God, we need nothing more; and we should settle for nothing less.
There are four things that will rob us of God’s manifested presence in our lives and that are the archenemies of worship and enjoying God’s presence.
DIRECT DISOBEDIENCE (Exodus 32:7-8)
Many people confess faith in the Lord Jesus but do not have His presence in their lives; and they do not have the assurance of their salvation. 1 John 4:13 Romans 8:16
When we willingly and knowingly disobey God, we grieve the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 4:30
When we grieve the Holy Spirit, we then quench the Spirit. 1 Thessalonians 5:19
The Holy Spirit is to us what the pillar of cloud and of fire was to the children of Israel. Exodus 13:21-22
The Holy Spirit is God’s manifested presence in our lives.
When we deliberately disobey God, we grieve the Spirit and quench the Spirit; and when we do that, God ceases to be real in our lives. We can even doubt our salvation. John 14:21
DIVIDED DEVOTION (Exodus 32:4)
An idol is anything we love more, fear more, serve more, and trust more than God.
Is there anyone or anything that takes precedence over God in our lives?
Is there anyone or anything that is a greater controlling factor of our behavior than God?
Is there a relationship that means more to us?
Is there a treasure that means more to us?
Is there anything that gets more of our attention than God?
DISPLACED DEPENDENCE (Exodus 32:7-8)
When God gives us a victory and we give the glory to someone or something else, we then depend upon that other person or thing rather than upon God; and we will lose the presence of God in our lives.
DETERMINED DEFIANCE (Exodus 32:9)
“Stiff necked” is the opposite of being meek and pliable. Is there someone God has laid on our hearts to witness to, but we haven’t witnessed to that person? Has God given us an impulse to serve in a specific capacity, but we have refused? Has God laid something on our heart that He wants us to give? Has God laid someone on our heart with whom we need to apologize to and to reconcile? Has God been telling us that there’s a wrong relationship in our life that we need to break off? Has God called us into missions or full-time Christian service?
Moses did not want to go without the Lord’s presence. Exodus 33:15
We must not settle for anything less than God’s presence in our lives.
One way we can know that our relationship with Jesus is real is that we have a desire to share our faith with others.
We’re told not merely to keep the faith, but to share it. If we’re not endeavoring to share our faith, then we’re not right with God. Proverbs 11:30
Why is winning souls wise?
Because of the value of the soul. Mark 8:36-37 Why is a soul so valuable?
Because of its desirability. It is expensive The value of an item is the price someone will pay for it. Jesus paid for our souls with His blood upon the cross.
Because a soul is durable. It is Eternal soul will last for all eternity.
Because of a soul’s possibility. It is the Essential part of you As followers of Jesus, we will one day be conformed into His likeness. We should see all people as potential brothers or sisters in Christ. John 4:1-26 Hebrews 11:31
Because of the command of the Savior.
We are commanded to make disciples; it’s not a suggestion. Matthew 28:19 Matthew 4:19 John 15:5-7 John 14:15
Because of the reward of the soul-winner. The greatest joy is to bring someone to Christ.
WE MUST BE COMMITTED TO SHARE OUR FAITH (Psalm 126:5-6)
We must be intentional about sharing our faith. It’s not enough to try to live a good life and then hope that others will desire to be saved simply by seeing the good life that we live. People are not saved by our lives; they’re saved by Jesus’ death. If we live a good life without letting people know why we live that good life, then we’re taking praise under false pretenses. Anything good in us is because of Jesus Christ. Mark 16:15
We need to understand that separation from the world is not isolation from the world. Luke 15:2
WE MUST BE CONCERNED WHEN WE SHARE OUR FAITH (Psalm 126:5-6)
We should be brokenhearted over the lost. We need to see every man as a potential brother; we need to see the lost, not simply theologically and intellectually, but emotionally. We need to see them as God sees them, with a broken heart. Luke 13:34 Acts 20:31 Jeremiah 9:1 Matthew 9:36
WE MUST BE CONSISTENT AS WE SHARE OUR FAITH (Psalm 126:5-6)
The seed that we sow is the Word of God. Mark 4:14
We need to know the Word of God in our heads, store it in our hearts, and sow it in the world.
The Bible refers to us as witnesses: a lawyer argues his case; a witness tells what he has seen and heard. 1 Peter 1:23 Hebrews 4:12 Galatians 6:7
WE MUST BE CONFIDENT IN SHARING OUR FAITH (Psalm 126:5-6) Mark 4:3-20
We don’t know when someone will get saved or who will get saved. Therefore, we need to keep sharing our faith, scattering the seed.
CONCLUSION If we will go and weep and pray and share and give, and do it consistently, then we will find that the greatest joy in the world is coming with our sheaves to lay them at Jesus’ feet. Acts 16:31
The ultimate priority and highest good is to worship God in spirit and in truth.
The greatest commandment is to love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. Mark 12:29-30
Jesus had a divine appointment with the woman at the well. John 4:4-24
The woman was bound by sin.
The woman was blinded by Satan. Proverbs 20:17
The woman was broken by sorrow. Mark 7:6
WE MUST WORSHIP THE RIGHT PERSON (John 4:21-24)
Idolatry is to worship the wrong god.
There is but one God, the Father. 1 Corinthians 8:6
Jesus called God “Father” more than seventy times in the Gospels.
We don’t have to understand all there is to know about God the Father in order to love Him and to worship Him.
WE MUST WORSHIP IN THE RIGHT PLACE
God does not dwell in temples made with hands. Acts 17:24
As Christians, every place and every day is sacred.
Once we’re saved, we become the sanctuary. 1 Corinthians 6:19
We have a responsibility not to defile our bodies because, as children of God, our bodies become the temple of God.
Because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, we now have the privilege of worshipping God anytime and any place. Hebrews 10:19-20 Matthew 27:51
This does not mean that we can willfully forsake the assembling of ourselves together. Hebrews 10:25
In the New Testament, to forsake the assembly was a mark that an individual wasn’t saved. 1 John 2:19
Why do we come to corporate worship?
To show that God is important to us.
To show that people are important to us. The significance of corporate worship is not primarily that we come to worship, but that we bring our worship to church.
WE MUST WORSHIP WITH THE RIGHT PROCEDURE
We worship the Lord in spirit.
We not only worship God with our hands, knees, eyes, and mouth, but it comes from within; we serve God with our spirit. Romans 1:9 Psalm 103:1
We also worship God in truth. Psalm 145:18
Real worship is based upon the Word of God.
WE MUST WORSHIP FOR THE RIGHT PURPOSE (John 4:23)
When we worship God with the right purpose, we’re not worshipping in order to get something out of it for ourselves; rather, we worship God in order to bless Him. Psalm 103:1
SPIRITUAL CONVICTION (Proverbs 29:1)
How does God reprove? Through His Holy Spirit Through sickness Psalm 119:67
Sickness is sign that our bodies are dying and that we need to be saved.
Through sweetness Romans 2:4
Through His servants
STUBBORN REBELLION (Proverbs 29:1)
How do people rebel, or harden their necks?
Through procrastination Proverbs 27:1 Exodus 8:9-10
Through pride Psalm 16:18
Through the pleasures of this world 2 Timothy 3:1-4
There is pleasure in sin but it is only for a season. Hebrews 11:25
There is pleasure in righteousness and in God’s presence. Psalm 16:11 Psalm 84:11 1 Timothy 6:17
SUDDEN DESTRUCTION (Proverbs 29:1)
Destruction of the mind through delusion 2 Thess 2:11-12 Strong delusion is the baggage that comes with sin.
Destruction of the spirit through desertion John 6:44 Genesis 6:3 Romans 1:24-28
Destruction of the body through death 1 Samuel 20:3
SETTLED DESTINY (Proverbs 29:1)
There are no second chances. Hebrews 9:27 Luke 16:19-31
If we still want to come to Jesus, that means that we have not crossed God’s deadline. Romans 10:13
What we do with our finances is an index of our faithfulness to God.
Money is only a test of our faith. Money itself is not evil. God made the gold and the silver. Psalm 24:1
We should not love money. 1 Timothy 6:10
Money is a wonderful servant but a terrible master.
The point of this parable is this: Take what God has put into our hands; win souls to Jesus and when we die they’ll welcome us into Heaven.
How to tell if we love money:
The trust test Proverbs 11:4, 28 Are we putting our trust, or faith, in money or in God?
The priority test Are our goals financial or are they spiritual? We should never try to make as much money as we can because that means we will be trying to make money when we should be doing other things. Matthew 6:33
The stewardship test Is there anything in our possession that we would not gladly part with if God asked for it?
The admiration test Would we rather spend more time reading news and business articles than the Bible?
Are we more impressed with the lives of the rich and famous or with the godly?
LEARN HOW TO SECURE MONEY. (Luke 16:1-2)
Stewardship is where men and women make money and God makes men and women.
God wants us to prosper. Psalm 35:27 Deuteronomy 8:18
We need to learn how to make money.
Don’t make money at the expense of life and health. Psalm 127:2
Don’t make money at the expense of character. No unfair business practices.
Don’t get in the business of gambling, pornography or alcohol. Habakkuk 2:15
Don’t make money at the expense of higher values. Are we only concerned with leaving our children a large financial inheritance? We need to leave true riches to our children.
We need to show them how to love God.
We need to show them how to love their spouses.
We need to show them good work ethic.
We need to show them integrity.
LEARN HOW TO SAVE MONEY. (Luke 16:8)
The Bible teaches us to save money but not to hoard it. Proverbs 6:6-8 Proverbs 21:20 James 5:1-3
The Bible is not against making money. Keep making money, and then use that money for the glory of God and spread of the Gospel around the world.
LEARNI HOW TO SPEND MONEY. (Luke 16:8)
Things to beware of when spending money:
Beware of credit buying. Designate everything to debt retirement except for the absolute necessities.
Sell all the items we don’t need. Pay ourselves. Mow our own lawns. Eat out less. Beware of impulse buying.
Proverbs 13:4 1 Timothy 6:8
Budgets allow us to tell our money to go where we want it to go rather than our money telling us what to do.
Beware of ego buying. We need to stop spending money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like. All ego buying does is feed our pride.
LEARN HOW TO SHARE MONEY. (Luke 16:9)
We need to tithe. Proverbs 3:9 Tithing really just shows our faith in God. Malachi 3:10 If we truly believe this verse, we will tithe.
Giving money and being rich doesn’t get us into Heaven. Luke 16:19-23 Mark 8:36-37
1 Kings 18:22
The days of 1Kings 18 were dark days in Israel: days of apostasy, apathy, and horrible sin.
The prophet Elijah told the people to make up their minds and decide whom they would follow: either the Lord God or the false idol known as Baal.
All of the people gathered at Mount Carmel, where they built an altar and placed a sacrifice upon it. Elijah then directed the people to pray; and the God who answered with fire, Elijah said, “Let him be God.”
We, too, need revival fire. Matthew 28:20 2 Chronicles 7:14
THE ENEMIES OF REVIVAL (1 Kings 18:3-22)
The compromisers Obadiah represents the compromisers. 1 Kings 18:3-6 Obadiah was looking for grass to feed the herds when he should have been praying for rain. He was trying to prop things up; Obadiah was trying to get by without repentance. Are we compromisers today? Was there ever a time when we loved Jesus more than we love Him now? Do we still have the joy of our salvation? Do we remember specific times when our prayers were being answered, but now our prayer life is weak? Is there anything about our lives that is different from that of the world?
Do we love to feed on the Word of God? Do we think that we’ve done all that God wants us to do?
The corrupt Ahab and Jezebel represent the corrupt. 1 Kings 18:17-18 1 Kings 16:30 1 John 4:4
The confused The people represent the confused. 1 Kings 18:19-21
What is there in us that is so different that it would bring conviction to those who straddle the fence spiritually?
What is there in us that would cause our neighbor to ask, “What does this mean?” Acts 2:12
The competition The priests of Baal represent the competition. 1 Kings 18:22 1 John 4:4
THE ELEMENTS OF REVIVAL (1 Kings 18:30-37)
The solidarity of God’s people. The enemy divides us, but the altar unites us. 1 Kings 18:30-31 Psalm 133:1 Acts 2:1
The separation of God’s people from the world. 1 Kings 18:32 God wants a holy people. James 4:4
The sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Satan’s back was broken at Calvary. 1 Kings 18:33 Revelation 12:11 John 12:31
The supernatural power of God. 1 Kings 18:33-35 Isaiah 44:3
The strength of believing prayer. Our prayer lives need to be consumed with the glory of God. 1 Kings 18:36-37 John 12:28
THE EVIDENCES OF REVIVAL (1 Kings 18:38-39) The fire fell. We need Holy Spirit fire in our lives.
Fire consumes. 1 Kings 18:38 Fire convicts. 1 Kings 18:38 Fire converts. 1 Kings 18:39
We have substituted facts for truth. Facts are like a recipe, and truth is like the meal.
Knowledge increases. Daniel 12:4
Truth stays the same.
Satan’s chief tool is a lie because it is antithetical to the truth. John 8:44
PRIZE THE TRUTH.
Truth is indispensable. 1 Timothy 3:15 3 John 1:4
Truth is absolute.
Truth is attainable. John 17:17 John 14:6 John 16:13
Truth without power is deadening and depressing; knowledge without transformation avails nothing. 2 Cor 3:6
PURCHASE THE TRUTH. (Proverbs 23:23) John 8:31-32
Believe the truth. Continue in the Word. Become a disciple of Christ. Discipleship is costly.
It will cost you time.
It will cost you discipline. 2 Timothy 4:13 1 Corinthians 6:19 2 Corinthians 12:2
Reasons we should read:
Enlightenment Acts 17:28
It will cost you obedience. James 1:21-22 Matthew 7:26
PRESERVE THE TRUTH. (Proverbs 23:23) Titus 1:9 Jude 3
Guard against those who would deny the truth.
Guard against those who would distort the truth.
Guard against those who would dilute the truth.
Guard against those who would defile the truth. 2 Corinthians 2:17
PROCLAIM THE TRUTH. John 3:16
Jesus had just fed the 5,000 with a few fishes and loaves. Many followed Jesus because of the miracles He performed. But when Jesus preached a challenging message to them, the multitudes began to leave Him.
If you turn from Jesus, where will you go? Will you turn to atheism?
The intelligencia of the ages have believed in God. Socrates Galileo Newton Pasteur Einstein Wernher von Braun
Will you turn to philosophy? Noted philosophers have stated that philosophy did not satisfy their lives or their questions.
Will you turn to materialism? God made you for Himself; and even if you have material things, you will still find your heart and life empty.
Will you turn to false religions? Only Jesus has the words of eternal life. John 6:68 Jesus alone is the answer.
Jesus is a fact of history. John 6:38 Romans 1:4 Acts 1:3
SCRIPTURAL REASONS (John 6:44-45)
The Bible is the Word of God.
How do we know the Bible is true?
The unity of the Bible
The longevity of the Bible
The accuracy of the Bible
The power of the Bible John 6:63
Jesus is the central theme of the Bible. His miraculous birth and life His sacrificial death John 10:18 John 6:54 Acts 10:43 John 6:45
SPIRITUAL REASONS (John 6:63)
If you sincerely seek the truth, God the Holy Spirit will speak to you and confirm that Jesus is the Christ.
He witnesses to you.
He witnesses in you. 1 John 5:6-10 Psalm 34:8
PERSONAL REASONS (John 6:68-69)
When Jesus is real to you personally, no one can argue you out of believing in Him.
1 John 1:5-2:6
Secret sins are the primary reason that our fellowship with God is broken.
We live in a day where sin is no longer considered sin. Genesis 1:27
The answer to the sin problem is not contained in: Intelligence Genetics Environment Emotions
The answer to the sin problem is contained in the Bible.
When we are saved, two relationships are formed.
Our son-ship This relationship deals with the judicial side of our salvation.
All of our sin, past, present and future, have been paid for by Jesus’ blood and we are forever a child of God.
Hebrews 8:12 Isaiah 43:25 Jeremiah 31:34 Isaiah 1:18 Romans 4:8
Our fellowship This deals with the day to day dealings of our sins.
The status of our fellowship can change. When we sin, our fellowship with God is broken. Once we are saved, God deals with our sin not as judge, but as Father. Hebrews 12:6 Matthew 6:12
Our fellowship with God is what John is speaking of in this passage. 1John 1:3
THE CONVICTION OF SIN (1 John 1:5-7)
The evolution of a lie: We lie to deny sin. 1 John 1:6
We lie to deceive ourselves and others. 1 John 1:8
We lie to defy the Savior. 1 John 1:10
It is very important that we understand the difference between Holy Spirit conviction and satanic accusation. Revelation 12:10
How the Holy Spirit convicts sin:
Legitimately The Holy Spirit will never convict us of repented of and confessed sin.
Satan will entice you to sin and then condemn you for doing it.
Specifically The Holy Spirit will convict our sins by name and with specificity. Satan will condemn us vaguely and try to make us feel bad about our entire lives.
Redemptively The Holy Spirit doesn’t just tell us that our sin is bad, but He tells us to come back to Jesus and to restore our fellowship.
THE CLEANSING OF SIN (1 John 1:9)
To confess our sins doesn’t just mean an admission of sin, but it means that we join with the Holy Spirit in agreement with what He says about our sin.
How should we confess our sin? 1 John 1:9
We need to confess our sin immediately. In the Greek, this passage is in the present tense indicating that it is a continual process.
We need to confess our sins specifically.
We need to confess our sin confidently. 1 John 1:7
THE CONQUEST OF SIN (1 John 2:1)
God is encouraging us not to sin!
But when we do sin, we have an advocate in Jesus Christ who has conquered our sin. Hebrews 7:12 1 John 2:2
We are not to treat our sins lightly. 1 John 2:5
God wants us to have fullness of joy in Him and, sin is a hindrance to that. 1 John 1:4
James 1:12-15, 17-19
Victimology is what we practice in our society today, where nobody wants to take the blame or any personal responsibility. The “blame game” is as old as the Garden of Eden, when Adam and Eve denied personal responsibility for their actions. Genesis 3:8-13 James 1:12-15
In this life, you will be tempted.
It is impossible to tempt God with evil. James 1:13
God is completely whole. God is totally holy.
God will never tempt you with evil.
God will test you and prove you, but He will never induce you to do evil.
God gives us tests to make us stand; Satan gives us temptations to make us stumble.
THERE IS A COURTSHIP THAT LEADS TO A CONSENT (James 1:14) Sin is an inside job.
Satan tempts us, to draw us away; but the sinner says “I do” to the enticement.
We are drawn away according to our own lusts. Mark 7:21-23
We are free to choose, but we are not free to choose the consequences of our choices.
THERE IS A CONSENT THAT LEADS TO A CONCEPTION (James 1:15)
There is an unholy union of inward lust and outward attraction which brings forth sin.
THERE IS A CONCEPTION THAT LEADS TO A CONSUMMATION (James 1:15)
The term “when it is finished” in this Scripture literally means when it is full grown.
The consummation is death. Ezekiel 18:20 Romans 6:23
Some examples of the end result of sin:
Alcohol Proverbs 23:31-32
Immorality Proverbs 5:3-5
Human pride Proverbs 14:12 Proverbs 20:17
James 1:18 there is the conception of the new birth.
Through Jesus’ redemptive sacrifice for us on Calvary’s cross, we can live victoriously if we surrender our lives to His Lordship.
1 Timothy 6:5-10, 17-19
Many families are in financial bondage.
The following are questions to consider when determining whether or not you and your family are in financial bondage:
Are you charging daily expenditures because of a lack of funds?
Do you put off paying a bill until next month?
Do you borrow to pay fixed expenses such as taxes or insurance?
Does your annual debt retirement on a long-term debt exceed 20% of your annual income?
Are you unaware of how much you owe?
Are creditors and bill collectors contacting you about past due bills?
Are you taking from savings to pay current bills?
Are you making new loans to pay off old loans?
Have you thought about being dishonest concerning money?
Are you having difficulty returning your tithe to God?
Do you and your spouse argue over money?
THE LACK OF WEALTH (1 Timothy 6:6-8)
The lack of wealth cannot take away genuine contentment.
Contentment is an inner sufficiency that keeps us at peace in spite of outward circumstances. Ecclesiastes 5:10
Contentment is found with godliness. 1 Timothy 6:6
Your personal value is revealed by godliness.
Your personal virtue is revealed by godliness. 1 Timothy 6:5
Your personal victory is revealed by godliness.
Worth cannot be measured by money. Psalm 23:1
We need to get our families together and confess the sin of discontent. We need to then have a praise service, thanking the Lord Jesus for what He has done for us. And, then as a family, take a frank look at our debt and work together as a team to solve the problem.
THE LOSS OF WEALTH (1 Timothy 6:7)
The loss of wealth is inevitable. Proverbs 23:4-5 Job 1:21
Prosperity is posterity. What are we leaving behind in the hearts and minds of our children?
THE LOVE OF WEALTH (1 Timothy 6:8-10)
The love of wealth is dangerous. 1 Timothy 6:9 “they that will be rich”. This passage literally means those who determine to be rich. Proverbs 28:20 Matthew 6:33
THE LUXURY OF WEALTH (1 Timothy 6:17-19)
The wealthy can encounter financial bondage when:
They seek satisfaction in their money.
Their wealth increases their worries. Proverbs 15:6
They become slaves to their money. Proverbs 23:4
They have no treasure in Heaven. Proverbs 11:4
The luxury of wealth brings responsibility. 1 Timothy 6:17
Be humble. Be trustful. Be joyful. Psalm 84:11 1 Timothy 6:18
Be generous. We are stewards; God is the owner. Psalm 24:1 1 Corinthians 4:2
The greatest wealth we have is not in the bank. If we have children they are our greatest wealth.
Children don’t make rich people poor, they make poor people rich.
We can only have true godliness when we give our hearts completely to Jesus. 1 John 5:13
Gideon was a champion of the faith. Will it matter that we ever lived? Will we leave a vacancy?
Most people think that there cannot be a revival today, but there has never been a greater day to preach the Gospel.
God wants all of us to be a part of that revival. The most impressive thing about Gideon was that he wasn’t impressive. God used a common, ordinary man. Judges 6:11-13
GOD USES COMMON PEOPLE. (Judges 6:14-16)
God did not see Gideon as he was; God saw him as who he could be. The Lord clothed Himself with Gideon.
Judges 6:34 1 Corinthians 1:26-27 God wants to do extraordinary things through ordinary people.
GOD USES CLEANSED PEOPLE. (Judges 6:25-26)
If we want God to use us we have to remove the idols from our lives.
An idol is anything we love more, fear more, serve more or value more than God.
God will not use us if there is unconfessed and unrepented of sin in our lives. Isaiah 52:11
GOD USES COURAGEOUS PEOPLE. (Judges 6:12)
God called Gideon a man of valor, or courageous. After gathering an army of 32,000, God told Gideon to have the men who were afraid to go back home. Judges 7:2-3
God cannot and will not use us if we are cowards because fear and cowardice are infectious. Deuteronomy 20:8
There’s nothing wrong with normal, self-protecting fears.
God did not give us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of power and love. 2 Timothy 1:7 Acts 1:8 1 John 4:18
When you are filled with the Holy Spirit, you will have assurance that God can use you and you will find that you’re unusually courageous.
GOD USES CAUTIOUS PEOPLE. (Judges 7:4-8)
We are to have the balance of being courageous yet cautious. Philippians 1:28 1 Peter 5:8 Luke 21:36 1 Cor 9:27
We need to watch what we watch. Proverbs 6:27 1 Corinthians 2:3
Sin is often an unexpected opportunity, an unprotected life and an undetected weakness. 1 Corinthians 10:12
GOD USES A CONFIDENT PEOPLE. (Judges 7:12-15)
There is a dread in Hell over us.
The devil hopes that we never understand who we really are in Christ.
Even though we are just a piece of “barley bread”, God can and will use us.
We must check ourselves that we don’t have a second-hand religion. Acts 19:11-17
Our names need to be known in Hell the same way that Gideon’s name was known in the enemy’s camp. 1 Cor 1:26
1 Corinthians 12:12-27
The church is described in many ways:
The church is the bride of Christ. Revelation 19:7-9
The church is the building built with living stones. 2 Peter 2:5
The church is an army. Revelation 19:19
The church is a flock of sheep with Jesus as the shepherd. Psalm 100:3 John 10:11
The church is the body of Christ. Ephesians 1:22-23 Romans 12:4-5
Love for Jesus and love for what Jesus loves are inseparable. 1 Corinthians 12:12-18
IN A BODY, THERE IS A MANIFESTED PERSON. A person is manifested by their physical body.
You can never know a person apart from their body.
How will the world know Jesus? Through His body.
We can’t try to imitate Jesus: we need to let Jesus live through us. Colossians 1:27
IN A BODY, THERE IS A MINISTERING PURPOSE. Our body exists to serve us.
Our body’s individual parts are not meant to have any plans of their own.
Jesus doesn’t want us to do anything for Him; rather, He wants to do something through us.
Our best ability is availability.
IN A BODY, THERE IS A MOTIVATING POWER. (1 Corinthians 12:13)
The life of the human body is the human spirit. Genesis 2:7 Luke 24:46
The life of the body of Christ is the Holy Spirit.
Without the Holy Spirit, there is no power in the church.
The church is organized, but it is not an organization; it is an organism.
While the church is an organism, it is also organized. 1 Corinthians 14:40
When we are saved, two things happen:
We are baptized into the body of Christ by the Holy Spirit.
We are filled with the Holy Spirit. 1 Corinthians 12:13
When we are filled with the Holy Spirit, we receive our spiritual gift.
The Holy Spirit is the evidence of our salvation. Romans 8:9
IN A BODY, THERE IS A MUTUAL PROGRAM. (1 Corinthians 12:14-18)
We have the same life. 1 Corinthians 12:15-16
No part of the body can function as it ought apart from the other parts of the body.
We are to operate alongside of other Christians. 1 Corinthians 12:17-18
We have a mutual love. 1 Corinthians 12:25-26
If one of the members of the body is sick, then the whole body takes part in caring for the sick member.
We cannot be arrogant. We cannot show envy. There cannot be any rivalry, self-sufficiency nor disunity.
We have the same Lord. 1 Corinthians 12:27
Loyalty to the head equals loyalty to each other.
We need to be right with Jesus before we can be right with one another.
A lot of faults can be found within the church; but Jesus loves the church, so we should love the church.
We need to discover ourselves. We need to find our spiritual gift and our place within the body.
We need to accept ourselves. We can never be somebody else, so we should strive to be the best version of ourselves.
We need to give ourselves. Every member is designed to be both a receiver and transmitter.
One by one, the lights of decency are being blown out in Australia. 1 Samuel 8:18
The prophet Isaiah warned a sinful nation that their sins had created a barrier between them and God so that He would not hear their prayers. Isaiah 59:1-4
THE SINS OF THE NATION DURING ISAIAH’S DAY
Bloody hands Isaiah 59:2-3
Australia has bloody hands through the killing of pre-born babies. Since the 1973, Australia is now killing up to 4000 babies each day.
Lying lips Isaiah 59:3 Australia is suffering from a decline in basic honesty. Matthew 5:37
Wicked hearts Isaiah 59:4 Ecclesiastes 10:1
Our society tells us that private morality can be disconnected from public service.
In our society, public approval validates wrong behavior. James 5:12 Isaiah 5:20
WHAT CAUSES THESE CONDITIONS?
A diet of deception Isaiah 59:5
Lies and philosophies hatched out through the incubators of:
A web of wickedness Isaiah 59:5 Pornography Drugs and alcohol Immorality
The trashing of truth
Isaiah 59:12-15 When you stand for truth and against the deception and wickedness, you become the bad guy in the eyes of many. Isaiah 59:15 There is a traffic jam – judgment, justice and equity cannot enter because truth is fallen in the streets. Isaiah 59:14 Truth is not dead, but it has fallen in Australia.
THE IMPORTANCE OF TRUTH
God refers to the Bible as the Word of Truth. Ephesians 1:13
The Holy Spirit is referred to as the Spirit of Truth. John 14:17
God describes Himself as truth. John 14:6
Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. John 14:6
The church is called the pillar and the ground of truth. 1 Timothy 3:15
The Apostle John said, “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.” 3 John 1:4
The only way to defeat deception and wickedness is through truth.
WE MUST REDEDICATE OURSELVES TO THE TRUTH
John 17:17 Proverbs 23:23 John 8:32
1 Peter 3:7-9
A problem in many homes today is drop-out dads who are failing to honor their God-given roles and responsibilities within their families.
One of the best things a father can do for his children is to love their mother.
PRACTICE TOGETHERNESS AND INTIMACY WITH YOUR WIFE. (I Peter 3:7)
The deep need of a woman’s heart is total togetherness with her husband.
The Latin word for intimacy means “inmost”; it is opening up and sharing.
Verbal intimacy share your secrets, hopes, dreams, plans.
Emotional intimacy laughing together, crying together; sharing heartaches, joys, and fears.
Intellectual intimacy share your ideas and interests in books, theology, politics.
Social intimacy you have the same friends, enjoy the same kinds of recreation and hobbies.
Spiritual intimacy pray together.
Physical intimacy – where two become one flesh.
BE UNDERSTANDING OF YOUR WIFE. (1 Peter 3:7)
Men and women are equal, but they are not identical. The distinction between the sexes has nothing to do with equality; we have the sameness of worth but difference of function.
What are some general differences between men and women?
God designed the man to be the initiator and the woman to be the responder.
Men tend to think logically; women tend to think emotionally.
Men tend to be doers; women tend to be “be”-ers. A man is goal-oriented, with his greatest fulfillment found in his work; a woman’s greatest fulfillment is in her home and her relationships.
Men tend to be silent; women tend to talk.
Men tend to look for success; women tend to look for security.
GIVE HONOR TO YOUR WIFE. (1 Peter 3:7)
This means to esteem her as having great value. Ways you can honor your wife:
Put her on a pedestal.
Let your children know how much you love and honor her.
Praise her in front of her friends.
Verbalize your praise to her.
Praise her not only for her physical charm and beauty, but also for her character traits.
SHARE FREELY WITH YOUR WIFE. (1 Peter 3:7)
Husbands and wives need to understand that they have an equal inheritance as the children of God. Galatians 3:28
More than anything else, the mark of sharing fully with your wife is praying together.
Why does a man find it hard to pray with his wife?
God designed the man to be the provider and protector, so he’s built with kind of a hard, outer shell. Genesis 2:15
Why does a woman desire to pray with her husband?
It’s an affirmation of her; it speaks of equality and trust.
It says that her husband recognizes her as a spiritual entity.
It says that her husband has a genuine interest in her spiritual growth.
It says that her husband has time for her.
It says that she is part of her husband’s spiritual life.
It says that her husband desires to have spiritual leadership in their home.
It says that her husband is tending to his duties as the spiritual leader.
DEAL GENTLY WITH YOUR WIFE. (1 Peter 3:7-8)
Be of compassion; the word “compassion” in 1 Peter 3:8 literally means “with feeling.”
To “love as brethren,” according to verse 8, means friendship love. Your wife should be your best friend.
To “be pitiful” means that you hurt when your wife hurts; you love her as you love your own body.
To “be courteous” is just love in the little things.
Is God fair to send people who have never heard of Jesus to Hell?
Is there another way to Heaven apart from Jesus?
God is just, and God is righteous.
There is no other way to Heaven apart from Jesus Christ. John 14:6 Acts 4:12
THE REVELATION FACTOR: ALL MEN HAVE SOME LIGHT. (Romans 1:19-20)
There are two witnesses that will testify against men’s ignorance.
Creation Creation is the outward, objective witness. Romans 1:19-20 Psalm 19:1 Psalm 14:1
Conscience Conscience is the inward, subjective witness. Romans 1:19 Romans 2:14-15 Romans 1:22
These witnesses testify to the fact that God exists. John 1:9
THE REFUSAL FACTOR: LIGHT REFUSED INCREASES DARKNESS. (Romans 1:21)
Truth cannot just be placed on ice.
The opposite of truth is not error, it is sin. Romans 1:18 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12
The baggage that comes with sin is delusion, a lie and damnation. Mark 4:25
THE RECEPTION FACTOR: LIGHT OBEYED INCREASES LIGHT. (Romans 1:16-17)
If a man is not interested in the fact of God, then God is under no obligation to show that man the way to God.
God gives us truth. When we believe that truth, God gives us more truth.
When a man is ready to receive the gospel, God will get the gospel to that man. Acts 8:26-38 Acts 10 John 17:16-17
THE RECKONING FACTOR: GOD WILL JUDGE US BY THE LIGHT WE’VE REJECTED. (Romans 2:5, 11-12)
God will hold those who have heard of Jesus more accountable than those who have not heard. Luke 12:48
The burning question is not what God is going to do with the heathen who has never heard, but what is God going to do with those who have heard? Matthew 10:14 Matthew 11:23
A child gets an idea of him or herself from the family. A child gets a picture of life from the family.
A child gets a picture of God from the family. There is philosophical war on the family. Genesis 1:27
People think that God’s plan isn’t good enough. There are so many people living together without the benefit of marriage. There is a disregard for human life. There is a disregard for marriage in light of easy divorce laws. There is a moral freefall happening due to pornography. There is humanistic education.
We are leaving a legacy for the next generation. Proverbs 13:22 Proverbs 19:14 Proverbs 20:7
THE PRINCIPLE OF PRIORITY (Deuteronomy 5:29)
What are our core values?
What are we willing to die for?
The greatest testimony we can possess is to have those who know us best respect us the most.
THE PRINCIPLE OF PURPOSE (Deuteronomy 6:1-2)
How do we pray for our children? For their health? For their wealth? For their fame? For their ease of life? James 4:3
Even the pagans want healthy and successful children. Do we pray for God to call our children into the ministry?
Psalm 127:4 3 John 1:4
We shouldn’t care whether our children are successful or wealthy; we should care about them loving the Lord.
We should have goals for ourselves and desires for our children.
It is ok to ask God to bless our children, but our desire for them should be that they love the Lord.
THE PRINCIPLE OF PERSUASION (Deuteronomy 6:6-9)
We are called to teach our children about the Lord and try to persuade them to Him.
All we can do is point our children to the Lord; we cannot make their choices for them.
THE PRINCIPLE OF PERSISTANCE (Deuteronomy 6:7)
Leaving a legacy is a day in, day out, week in, week out, year in, year out way of life.
Sometimes we will think that we have failed, but God will never give up on us so we should never give up on Him.
God will use our failures and weakness for His glory.
THE PRINCIPLE OF POSSESSION (Deuteronomy 6:18-23)
We have been called out of bondage to live in freedom.
Often times, we find ourselves wandering in the desert in between bondage and freedom. Exodus 12-13
We must enter into the land of the promise to demonstrate the freedom that we have.
When children hear about the bondage that their parents have been set free from but they see that their parents aren’t taking possession of the promise, Satan comes and entices them back to bondage.
It is logical that God puts us in ministry. We’re in the business of serving the Lord. It is imperative that we find our gifts and use them.
The hour that we live in is desperate. Militant atheism is on the march. Moral standards have toppled.
The hour that we live in is ripe. There is new hunger for spiritual things.
The hour that we live in is late. We are living in the last days. We are in a race against time, against sin, against Satan and against self.
THE PRINCIPLE OF LORDSHIP (Romans 12:1-2)
The request Romans 12:1 We need to present ourselves to the Lord. God may not answer our requests if we don’t answer His request of us.
The reasons Romans 12:1 We are His; we are not our own. We are bought with a price. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
The requirement Romans 12:1 We are to be a sacrifice.
The sacrifice is personal. No one else can do it for us.
The sacrifice is slain. We lose all of our rights when we die to self.
The sacrifice is whole. God will not accept a partial sacrifice. It has to be 100%
The sacrifice is bound. Devotion and discipline keep us bound to the altar.
Worship is being bound to the altar and being consumed by the Lord.
The result Romans 12:2
Transformation When we are consumed upon the altar, we are transformed. The inner nature comes to the surface.
This is the same transformation Jesus went through on the Mount of Transfiguration. Matthew 19:2
Jesus was ordinary to look at, but when He was transfigured His true nature came to the surface. Isaiah 53:2
The inner nature of Jesus is Deity. The inner nature of a Christian is Jesus.
If we let Him, Jesus will come out of us. Romans 12:2-3
When we are transformed, we are given the mind of Christ.
God wants us to think with our renewed minds so that we can clearly see what our gifts are and how to use them.
THE PRINCIPLE OF MEMBERSHIP (Romans 12:4-5)
The church is not an organization with Jesus as the president; it is an organism with Jesus as the head.
God has made us different so that He might make us one.
We are not supposed to be able to function without each other.
THE PRINCIPLE OF STEWARDSHIP (Romans 12:6-8)
There seven areas of stewardship given in this passage. Prophecy Romans 12:6 1 Corinthians 14:3
Prophecy is the ability to speak for God.
Ministry/Service Romans 12:7 This gift includes general church work.
Exhortation Romans 12:8 This gift is characterized by getting people excited about the Lord.
Giving Romans 12:8 We are all called to give, but those with the gift of giving give above and beyond and sacrificially.
Mercy Romans 12:8
THE PRINCIPLE OF FELLOWSHIP (Romans 12:9-13)
All of our gifts come together and function to the fullest when we are serving the Lord in fellowship.
Many have given their hearts to Lord without finding their gifts.
We need to come to, the Lord, giving Him our lives anew and afresh as a living sacrifice.
God told Noah He was going to destroy the Earth because of its wickedness.
There needed to be protection from God’s judgment, therefore, God told Noah to build the ark.
Jesus said that before He comes again, people will be continuously wicked. Matthew 24:37-38
GRACE PROVIDES A SAVIOR. (Genesis 6:14)
The ark is a picture of Jesus. 1 Peter 3:20-21
The security of the ship Genesis 6:14 The ark was “incorruptible” and kept God’s judgment away from Noah and his family.
The sufficiency of the ship Genesis 6:14-15 The ark had enough space for Noah, his family, and the animals.
The shape of the ship Gen 6:15-16 The ark was built like an ancient coffin and there was no human way to guide it.
The sustenance of the ship Gen 6:21 The ark had everything that Noah, his family, and the animals needed to survive.
The schedule of the ship Genesis 8:4 The ark finished its work on the third day after Passover.
GRACE PROVIDES SALVATION. (Ephesians 2:8-10) There are three prepositions that explain how salvation works.
By We are saved by grace. Noah was saved by grace. Genesis 6:8 Genesis 6:18 Romans 3:22
Through We are saved by grace, through faith. Noah had to get on the ark. Genesis 7:1 Hebrews 11:7
Unto We are saved by grace, through faith, unto good works. We are not saved by works, but to do good works. Genesis 9:1
GRACE PROVIDES SECURITY. (Genesis 7:1)
God did not tell Noah to “go” into the ark; He told him to “come” into the ark.
God was in the ark. Genesis 7:16 2 Corinthians 5:17
Security isn’t in a place, it’s in Jesus. John 10:27-30
CONCLUSION (2 Peter 3:3-12)
God destroyed the world the first time with water; He’s going to destroy it a second time with fire. Even though it’s been two thousand years since Jesus went away, it’s only been two days in the eyes of the Lord. 2 Peter 3:8
The reason God hasn’t judged the Earth yet is because He is waiting for someone to be saved.
The day is coming like a thief in the night. 2 Peter 3:10 Matthew 24:38
Only those who are in Jesus will survive God’s judgment.
Noah went into the ark poor but came out rich. Matthew 5:5
1 Samuel 1:10-28
THE PRINCIPLE OF MAGNIFICIENT PRIORITY (1 Samuel 1:10-11)
Children are a blessing from God, not a burden. Psalm 127:3 Psalm 128:3-4
Children do not make rich people poor, they make poor people rich.
THE PRINCIPLE OF MAGNIFICIENT PRAYER (1 Samuel 1:10)
Raising godly children happens before they are born.
God gave many children to women who were barren because they prayed for those children.
Sarah Genesis 21:1-7 Rachel Genesis 30:1, 22-24 Ruth Ruth 4:13-17 Elizabeth Luke 1:57-63 Matthew 11:11
THE PRINCIPLE OF MAGNIFICIENT PURPOSE (1 Samuel 1:11)
Hannah had the right purpose for Samuel. He was to become a Nazarite and be holy to the Lord. Numbers 6:5
Our prayers for our children must have God-honoring purpose.
Our desire for our children should be that they walk with the Lord. 3 John 4 Psalm 112:2 James 4:3 Ephesians 3:14-21
This passage is a great prayer for our children.
We are to have godly desires for our children, not goals.
We should only set goals for ourselves.
THE PRINCIPLE OF MAGNIFICIENT PERSISTENCE (1 Samuel 1:12-20)
Hannah continued to pray for Samuel after he was born. Isaiah 40:31 Psalm 37:7 Psalm 27:14 Ephesians 6:18
Because of Hannah’s perseverance, her sorrow was turned to gladness.
THE PRINCIPLE OF MAGNIFICIENT PERSUASION (1 Samuel 1:21-28)
Hannah saw the importance of persuading Samuel to the Lord while he was young.
She treasured every moment with Samuel. 1 Timothy 1:5
Don’t let anyone make you think it is unimportant to raise children.
There is nothing greater than to raise a child for Jesus Christ.
The apostle Paul was a prisoner headed towards Rome. Many of us see difficulty in every opportunity, but Paul saw opportunity in every difficulty. Acts 16:25 Acts 26 2 Corinthians 2:14
THE REASONS FOR THE STORMS OF LIFE. (Acts 27:9-13)
There are four basic kinds of storms in life.
There are storms that are just part of nature. Matthew 5:45
There are storms that we ourselves engineer by our foolishness. Jonah 1-2
There are storms that God sends us into for development. Matthew 8:18
There are storms we are dragged into by other people. Acts 27:9-11
Sometimes children get into storms because of unwise or ungodly parents.
Sometimes a country goes into storms because of bad leadership.
Most of the time, there really isn’t much we can do about it. This is where Paul was; he didn’t want to sail.
There are five ways to sink your ship.
Make your decision in haste. Acts 27:9 The Holy Spirit does not push, He leads.
Depend upon worldly wisdom rather than Godly wisdom. Acts 27:11
Take the easy way out. Acts 27:12
Just follow the crowd. Acts 27:12 The majority is almost always wrong. Numbers 13-14 1 Samuel 8-10 Mat 27:20-22
Depend upon circumstances. Acts 27:13
THE REACTIONS TO THE STORMS OF LIFE. (Acts 27:14-21)
Dreams dissolve. Acts 27:15
Many times people let the storm come in and then they find themselves powerless against it.
Labor increases. Acts 27:16 As Christians we are to endure hardships, but grueling toil and labor comes with sin.
Matthew 11:29-30 Proverbs 13:15
Resources are wasted. Acts 27:18-21 Sin costs us everything. Psalm 35:27
Hope vanishes. Acts 27:29
All sense of direction disappears. Acts 27:20
Foolishness abounds. Acts 27:30-31
When we try to get out of a storm in our own way it’s a form of escapism that is built on selfishness.
The apostle Paul was trusting in God and was not afraid. Acts 27:22-25 Psalm 107:23-30
THE RESULTS OF THE STORMS OF LIFE. (Acts 27:23)
It was not God’s plan that they should sail, but it did not stop His ultimate plan. Acts 23:11 Acts 28:14
Where God does not rule, God overrules.
God’s plan for us is that we become more like Jesus. Romans 8:29
Sometimes the church can make bad decisions, but Jesus said that not even Hell could stop it. Matthew 16:18
God’s will is done regardless of who stands against Him. Psalm 2:3,6
All of life comes down to who you believe. Acts 27:11 Acts 16:31
If we aren’t endeavoring to bring people to Christ then we are not right with God. God wants to get our eyes off of self and onto others. John 4:35 We are commanded to be evangelists. Matthew 28:19 We are not all preachers but we can all be reachers.
BE SENSITIVE TO THE DIRECTION OF THE SPIRIT. (Acts 8:26)
God’s ways are often unexplained.
God’s ways are often unforeseen. If you are not willing to be used by God, then ask to be made willing. How does the Spirit of God operate?
God’s Spirit finds a heart that is open and ready for the gospel. Acts 8:27
God works on a person until they are ready and ripe.
God’s Spirit finds a heart that is willing to share the gospel. John 4:4 Acts 10
BE SWIFT FOR THE DEMANDS OF THE SPIRIT. (Acts 8:29-30)
Philip had to run to catch the Ethiopian’s chariot. If we are not swift, we can miss short-term opportunities.
Philip didn’t use any excuses in order to get out of speaking with the Ethiopian.
BE STEADFAST IN THE DESIRE OF THE SPIRIT. (John 15:26-27)
The desire of the Spirit is that we share and bear witness to Jesus. Acts 1:8
How did Philip share Jesus?
He told the Ethiopian that he was a sinner and needed to be saved. Isaiah 53:6 People have to understand that they need to be saved.
He told the Ethiopian that salvation is by faith. Acts 8:36-37 Romans 11:6
He baptized the Ethiopian. Acts 8:38-39 Romans 6:4
Through baptism, the Ethiopian demonstrated the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Baptism is not necessary for salvation; but it is necessary for obedience, and obedience is necessary for joy.
Jesus gave His apostles a “mission impossible.”
The apostles had many obstacles in their way:
They didn’t have an education. They didn’t have any finances. They had no prestige. They had no political pull.
They were coming against the imperial might of Rome.
They were coming against the intellectualism of the Greeks.
They were coming against the religious bigotry from the Jews.
We need to go back to the fundamentals of our faith.
WE NEED TO RECOGNIZE HIS PRESENCE IN US (Acts 1:1-3)
The book of Acts is about the continued work of Jesus Christ through His church.
In the Gospels, Jesus had a physical body; but today, His body is the Church. Colossians 1:27
We need to stop doing things for Jesus and start letting Him work through us. Galatians 2:20
The Christian life is not difficult; it is impossible. Matthew 19:26
Why did Jesus give the apostles this “mission impossible?” He knew that in Him they could do it.
He knew that without Him they could never do it.
What is the mission? Matthew 28:19-20 We are to make disciples.
We are to mark disciples.
We are to mature disciples.
WE NEED TO RELY ON HIS PROMISE TO US (Acts 1:4-8)
Jesus gave His apostles the promise of the Father. Luke 24:49
The promise is the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. We don’t have to be an intellectual to be used of God.
We are called to be a witness, not a lawyer. John 9:25 When we witness, it is not us but the Holy Spirit communicating through us. We are not to witness about denominations, just Jesus.
WE NEED TO RESPOND TO HIS PROGRAM THROUGH US (Acts 1:8)
We need to first minister to our communities before we can go out to the ends of the world.
Our business is to be a witness. There is no greater joy than to lead a soul to Jesus.
1 Corinthians 10:3-5
God and Satan are in a battle, and the battleground is our mind. 1 Corinthians 10:3-5
When we are born again, we are born to win. 2 Corinthians 2:14
THE WARFARE OF OUR FOE (1 Corinthians 10:4)
Our enemy is not clothed in flesh. Ephesians 6:12
Our mind is both the battleground and prize of this war. 1 Corinthians 10:5
Being saved does not mean that the battle is over. 2 Corinthians 11:3
Paul is jealous over the Corinthians in the same way a father is jealous over his daughter’s purity. 2 Corinthians 11:2
God destroyed an entire civilization because of their thought life. Genesis 6:5
God communicates to us through our minds. Ephesians 4:17-18
God changes us by changing our minds. Ephesians 4:23 Romans 12:2
God controls us through our minds. Romans 8:6 Proverbs 23:7 Isaiah 26:3
THE WEAKNESS OF OUR FLESH (2 Corinthians 10:3)
Our flesh does not have what it takes to have the right thought process.
We do not fight the flesh because our enemy is not flesh. Ephesians 6:10-13
The answer is not education. The answer is not legislation. The answer is not environment. Genesis 3:1-5
THE WEAPONS OF OUR FIGHT (2 Corinthians 10:4)
The sovereignty of our Commander 2 Corinthians 10:7 John 12:31
The authority of our commission 2 Corinthians 10:8 Luke 10:19-20 James 4:7
The certainty of our courage 2 Corinthians 10:8-11 Proverbs 4:13 Philippians 4:8 2 Corinthians 4:4
Isaiah 50:3-4, 10-11
There are times of darkness that we all experience; there are times when nothing seems to make sense.
Our natural response to difficult times is to ask God “why”. But “why” is not our question; only God has the answer to that. Our question is “how”: how are we going to react? What do we do when the lights go out? What is the discipline of darkness?
THOSE OF GREATEST DEVOTION MAY KNOW THE DEEPEST DARKNESS. (Isaiah 50:10-11)
Even those who walk closely with God will experience times of darkness. His servant Job Job 1:1, 19:8
The Prophet Habakkuk Habakkuk 1:2 John the Baptist Matthew 11:3, 11 The Apostle Paul 2 Corinthians 4:8
If you are plunged into a time of darkness, that does not necessarily mean that you have sinned or that you’re out of the will of God.
THE FAITH THAT IS BORN IN THE LIGHT IS OFTEN DEVELOPED IN THE DARK.
Oftentimes, it is in the darkness that our faith grows the most. Faith, like film, is developed in the dark.
Three examples of those whose faith was developed in the dark:
John Milton, when he experienced physical blindness, wrote the book Paradise Lost.
John Bunyan, while imprisoned, wrote Pilgrim’s Progress.
The apostle John was in exile to the Island of Patmos when he wrote the book of the Revelation.
The test of our character is what we do in the dark.
How does God develop our faith in darkness? Isaiah 50:10
God develops our faith when we look to Him.
God develops our faith when we lean on Him. Psalm 23:1, 4 Job 13:15 Job discovered that relationship is more important than reason.
SOME THINGS ARE SEEN IN THE DARK THAT CANNOT BE SEEN IN THE LIGHT. (Isaiah 50:3-4)
There are some things that we can only understand in the darkness.
Stars can only be seen at night. Psalm 148:3
There are treasures in the darkness. Isaiah 45:3
In the light, we see that which is near; but in the dark, we see that which is far away.
IT IS BETTER FOR YOU TO BE LEANING ON GOD IN THE DARKNESS THAN STANDING ALONE IN YOUR MAN-MADE LIGHT. (Isaiah 50:11)
Remember that if you are fearing and obeying God when darkness comes, that darkness has been ordained of God.
Isaiah 50:3 One of the great dangers of darkness is that you may be tempted to light your own fire. Man-made fire is deceptive. Three examples of those who lit their own fire:
Abraham Genesis 15-16 Moses Exodus 2:11-12, Acts 7:22-29 Simon Peter Luke 22:31-33, 50-62
IF YOUR SUN HAS SET, IT WILL RISE AGAIN. (Isaiah 50:4)
When the morning comes, when you’ve been through the dark night of the soul, there is a better day coming.
When you go through darkness and come out on the other side, you’ll learn things you never knew before.
Psalm 112:4 Psalm 30:5
Hebrews 12:14-15 (Program 2236, Air date 02.03.2013)
THE GERMINATION OF BITTERNESS Colossians 3:19
The seed of bitterness is a hurt. The hurt may be intentional. The hurt may be unintentional.
The hurt may be imagined. The hurt may be God’s chastisement. Hebrews 12:5-11
The soil of bitterness is a heart that harbors hostility.
THE DEVASTATION OF BITTERNESS (Hebrews 12:15)
The root of bitterness is underground and easy to hide.
Characteristics of a bitter person Very sensitive Has little or no gratitude Will harshly criticize or vainly flatter
Holds grudges Mood swings
The fruit of bitterness Hebrews 12:15
It will affect you physically.
It will affect you emotionally. Proverbs 15:17
It will affect you spiritually. Hebrews 12:14
Bitterness has a chain reaction. Ephesians 4:26, 30-31 Bitterness Wrath Anger Clamor
James 3:6 Evil speaking Malice
THE ERADICATION OF BITTERNESS
Let God reveal it. Psalm 139:23-24 Jeremiah 17:9
Let grace remove it. Hebrews 12:15
Let good replace it. Hebrews 12:14 Ephesians 2:8
Prayer is the greatest Christian privilege and service; it is also the greatest Christian failure.
Many Christians struggle with:
The problem of indifference we really don’t want to pray.
The problem of ignorance we don’t know how to pray or what to pray for.
The problem of inability we don’t have the energy and the strength to pray.
The problem of language we don’t know how to form and articulate our prayers.
The problem of satanic attack when we endeavor to pray, the devil comes in to invade our minds and draw away our attention.
God knows that we struggle with these issues in our prayer life; therefore, He has given us Someone to help. That Someone is the Holy Spirit. Two examples among several verses in Scripture that teach us to pray in the Spirit:
Ephesians 6:18 Jude 20
THE HOLY SPIRIT WORKS IN THE ACTIVATION OF OUR WILLS IN PRAYER (Romans 8:5-8)
To pray in the flesh is to fail; to pray in the Spirit is to succeed. Most of us don’t pray because we don’t want to pray. Why do we not want to pray? Because the flesh doesn’t like it. If we are Spirit-filled, then we will have a desire to pray. Romans 8:15 Galatians 4:6 Philippians 2:13
THE HOLY SPIRIT WORKS IN THE ANIMATION OF OUR BODIES IN PRAYER (Romans 8:10-11)
Sometimes when we pray, we become sleepy, tired, can’t concentrate, etc. There is the need for legitimate rest; but this refers to those moments when the devil teams up with our flesh to prevent us from praying.
Mark 6:31 Matthew 26:40-41 John 4:32
The Holy Spirit will help us with our weaknesses. Romans 8:26
How should we approach our weaknesses?
We should admit our weaknesses. View our weaknesses as an asset. 2 Corinthians 12:9
God’s plan is to deliver us from our self-sufficiency and for us to cast ourselves upon His sufficiency.
The word “helpeth” in Romans 8:26 means “together with” and “instead of”. Prayer is a partnership between us and the Holy Spirit: the Holy Spirit of God helps us “together with” and “instead of”. The Holy Spirit prays to the Father instead of us and together with us. Luke 10:40
THE HOLY SPIRIT WORKS IN THE ADAPTATION OF OUR REQUESTS (Romans 8:26-27)
Sometimes we don’t know what to pray for; but the Holy Spirit knows what to ask for. Romans 8:14
Our responsibility is to go ahead and pray, with a right spirit, even when we’re unsure how to pray or what to ask for. The Holy Spirit of God knows what we need, and He will adapt our prayers. John 17:24
THE HOLY SPIRIT PRESIDES OVER THE ADMINISTRATION OF OUR ACCESS (Romans 8:14-15)
The Holy Spirit gives us access to the Father. Ephesians 2:18 We pray to God through Jesus in the Spirit.
THE HOLY SPIRIT WORKS IN THE ARTICULATION OF OUR WORDS (Romans 8:26)
Sometimes our thoughts and burdens are too heavy to be expressed in words. This is when the Holy Spirit merges with our spirit in wordless prayer groanings too deep to be uttered. Romans 8:22-23
THE HOLY SPIRIT WORKS IN THE ENUNCIATION OF OUR CONFIDENCE (Romans 8:28)
God’s plan is not to make us healthy, wealthy, and happy; His plan is to conform us into the image of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. We may ask for one thing, but the Holy Spirit of God gives us another in order to make us more and more like Jesus. Prayer is God’s plan to make us like Jesus.
THE HOLY SPIRIT WORKS IN THE AMPLIFICATION OF OUR VICTORY (Romans 8:31-32)
The devil doesn’t want us to pray and will do all he can to prevent us from praying. That’s why we cannot pray in the flesh we’re no match for Satan. But when we pray in the Spirit, if God be for us, who can be against us?
Jeremiah 18:3-6 (Program 2380, Air date 12.30.2012)
THE POTENTIAL OF A LIFE THAT RESPONDS (Jeremiah 18:6)
God is the potter. Ephesians 2:10 We are the clay. The wheel is the circumstances of life. Romans 8:28 Isaiah 55:8-9
Numbers 21:5-9 Romans 6:13
THE PROBLEM OF A LIFE THAT RESISTS (Jeremiah 18:4)
There might be a hidden impurity in the clay.
The clay might not be broken enough.
We need to yield everything in our lives to Christ.
THE PROMISE OF A LIFE THAT REPENTS (Jeremiah 18:4)
God is a God of second chances. Jeremiah 18:6-8 2 Chronicles 7:14
We must respond while we are still pliable so that He can make a new vessel out of us.
THE PERIL OF A LIFE THAT REBELS (Jeremiah 19:10-11)
If we don’t yield to God the clay will harden. Jeremiah 19:1, 10-12, 15
Once the clay is hardened, God cannot remold it. Proverbs 29:1 Romans 11:8 Romans 1:21, 24, 26 28
It is not too late for God to remake your life. Acts 16:31
Our mandate has not changed. Matthew 28:20
Our Master has not changed. Hebrews 13:8
Our message has not changed. Jude 3 If it’s new it’s not true.
Our methods have not changed. Prayer Holy Spirit anointing Sharing Witnessing Soul-winning Giving Loving
Mankind has not changed. It is an insult to God to say we cannot have a revival. Romans 5:20 1 John 4:4
God demonstrates His power.
His power is symbolized. Acts 2:2-3
His power is symbolized by wind and fire.
His power is vocalized. Acts 2:4 Acts 2:6-11 The gift of tongues is a sign to unbelievers. 1 Corinthians 14:21-22
His power is actualized. Acts 2:4
The fullness of the Holy Spirit is the abiding principle of Pentecost.
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS A PROMISE TO BE RECEIVED. (Acts 2 :37-39)
The Holy Spirit Himself is the gift. We do not need to be baptized in order to be saved, but rather because we have been saved. Acts 2:38 Luke 11:32
Pentecost is an accomplished fact just like Calvary is an accomplished fact. Luke 24:49
Having the Holy Spirit is what makes you a Christian. Romans 8:9
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS A POWER TO BE RELEASED. (Acts 1:8)
This power is not a physical power.
This power is not an economic power.
This power is not a political power.
This power is spiritual power. Acts 2:14, 22
Holiness is not the way to Christ; Christ is the way to holiness.
We cannot make ourselves worthy of the Holy Spirit. 1 Corinthians 4:7
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS A PERSON TO BE RECOGNIZED. (Acts 2:12-18)
Peter did not take credit for what was happening during Pentecost.
One of the things that kills churches is when God starts working and people take the credit for it. Isaiah 42:8
Characteristics of a Spirit-filled church:
There will be amazement. Acts 2:12 Some people will be amazed at God’s work.
There will be amusement. Acts 2:13 Some people will mock and make fun of us.
There will be acknowledgement. Acts 2:41 Some people will acknowledge Jesus as Lord and will be saved.
1 Corinthians 15:20-26, 54-58
Death is a fact, and death is a foe; but death is a defeated foe. 1 Samuel 20:3
The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ defeated death. 1 Corinthians 15:20-26 All death is unnatural.
Death is the root and the fruit of sin.
THE RESURRECTION OF JESUS DEFEATS DEATH’S KEEPING POWER.
Jesus willingly laid down His life. John 10:18
Jesus is the first fruits. 1 Corinthians 15:20
Jesus is the last Adam. 1 Corinthians 15:22
Eyewitness accounts affirm the resurrection. 1 Corinthians 15:8 1 Corinthians 15:14-15
The resurrection is illustrated by a seed that goes into the ground and dies. 1 Corinthians 15:35-38
There is a continuity of life that is in us. John 11:26 Psalm 139:16
THE RAPTURE DEFIES DEATH’S KILLING POWER. (1 Corinthians 15:51-52)
The rapture was a sacred secret that was hidden from the Old Testament Prophets. Ephesians 3:3-5 Job 19:25-26
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 We are not looking for antichrist; we are looking for Christ. Mark 13:32-37
THE REIGN OF JESUS DESTROYS DEATH’S KINGLY POWER.
Death had a dominion; Jesus destroyed that dominion. Romans 5:14 2 Timothy 1:10 Revelation 20:14
Jesus has taken the sting and power out of death. 1 Corinthians 15:54-57 1 Corinthians 15:25-26
It pays to serve Jesus.
If you’re following Jesus, you’ll live forever because Jesus has become the death of death.
RESPECT THE MYSTERY OF GOD’S PROVIDENCE. (Acts 12:1-10)
God works in a mysterious way. If our crisis doesn’t make sense to us that doesn’t mean it doesn’t make sense. Romans 8:28 Blessings and troubles work together in our lives.
REQUEST THE MINISTRY OF GOD’S PEOPLE. (Acts 12:5)
We can always pray during a crisis.
The frequency of the prayer Matthew 7:7 Luke 18:1
The fervency of the prayer Jeremiah 29:13 Prayer is hard work. Romans 15:30
The fellowship of the prayer Matthew 18:19-20
The faith of the prayer The church didn’t try to impress each other with their prayers. The church only relied on God, not on the outcome of the prayer.
The focus of the prayer The church prayed with specificity. Jeremiah 33:3
REST IN THE MASTERY OF GOD’S PEACE. (Acts 12:6-7)
Peter was sleeping soundly the night before his execution. He was no longer afraid of death. He knew that God’s people were praying for him. Psalm 121:4 Isaiah 26:3 Philippians 4:6-7
REJOICE IN THE MAJESTY OF GOD’S POWER. (Acts 12:7-10)
The whole story is characterized with leisure. God’s mighty and majestic power are seen through this leisure.
Prayer is not an excuse to be lazy about what we can do. Acts 12:11-17 2 Thessalonians 3:10
CONCLUSION Four things to remember in a crisis: Don’t demand to understand. Remember the resource of prayer. Put your eyes on God and rest in His love. Expect God’s power to move in His own time and in His own way.
Mankind has three enemies: Sin Sorrow Death There has been no progress in these areas. There is no answer to these dilemmas other than the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
THE SATANIC OPPOSITION TO THE GOSPEL: SATAN FOUGHT IT. (Galatians 1:6-7)
Satan perverts the truth by calling evil good and good evil.
There can be no compromise with the truth of the gospel. Galatians 1:8-7
THE SETTLED ORIGIN OF THE GOSPEL: GOD THOUGHT IT. (Galatians 1:11-12)
The Gospel is not man’s invention; it is divine revelation.
We are not looking for a new gospel. Galatians 1:8-9
THE SACRIFICIAL OBTAINMENT OF THE GOSPEL: JESUS BOUGHT IT. (Galatians 1:7)
Jesus paid the price of the gospel with His blood. Galatians 1:3-5
This is why Jesus is the only way. Acts 4:12 John 14:6 Romans 1:16
THE SAVING OPERATION OF THE GOSPEL: GRACE WROUGHT IT. (Galatians 1:6)
It is seeking grace. Galatians 1:15 Romans 3:10-11 Genesis 3:9
It is saving grace. Galatians 1:16 Ephesians 2:8-9 Romans 11:6
It is securing grace. Romans 5:21 Galatians 3:3
It is sufficient grace. 2 Corinthians 9:8
It is surviving grace. Galatians 1:5
THE SINGULAR OBSESSION WITH THE GOSPEL: PAUL TAUGHT IT. (Galatians 1:9-10)
Paul was not trying to please his friends.
Paul was not trying to please the government.
Paul was not trying to please the false teachers. Galatians 1:13-14 Mark 8:38
Isaiah 53:1-12 (Program: 51-5212, Air dates 12.16.2012 & 12.23.2012)
THE SUPERNATURAL BIRTH OF THE KING (Isaiah 53:1-2)
This is a miraculous birth. Isaiah 7:14 Isaiah 9:6
If Jesus hadn’t been virgin born, He wouldn’t have been sinless. 1 Corinthians 15:22
Jesus was 100% God and 100% man. John 3:16
THE SIMPLE LIFE OF THE KING (Isaiah 53:2-3)
Jesus was born in a humble way and in a humble place. John 1:46
Jesus’ appearance was nondescript. Matthew 26:48
THE SUBSTITUTIONARY DEATH OF THE KING (Isaiah 53:4-6)
He took our sins. Isaiah 53:5 Matthew 26:39 Luke 22:44
He took our shame. Isaiah 53:7 John 19:10 Matthew 26:62-63
Jesus was quiet because He was bearing our shame. Matthew 22:11-12 Romans 1:16
He took our separation. Isaiah 53:8 Matthew 27:42 Habakkuk 1:13 God turned His back on Jesus. Matthew 27:46 Psalm 22:1 Psalm 23:4
He took our suffering. Isaiah 53:9-10
Jesus, being infinite, paid in a finite amount of time what we, being finite, would pay for an infinite amount of time.
THE SAVING RESURRECTION OF THE KING (Isaiah 53:9-10)
Man and nature made Jesus’ death as sure as they could. Matthew 27:64
Jesus is not dead, He’s alive!
THE SOVEREIGN REIGN OF THE KING (Isaiah 53:11-12)
Jesus is the mighty arm of the Lord. Philippians 3:10
There isn’t much known about the wise men. We are not sure how many there were. We are not sure what they rode on. We are not sure exactly where they came from. They did know prophecies about Jesus’ birth. They were wise because they sought Jesus to worship Him. There isn’t much certainty about what the star was. There is a possibility that it was the shekinah glory of God. Exodus 13:21 2 Chronicles 7:1-2 Ezekiel 10:18 Luke 2:9
The wise men faced several difficulties.
Distance They were traveling from a far off land.
Discomfort The journey would have been very long and tiring.
Danger The wise men had to deal with King Herod.
Herod was the kind of man who didn’t have a problem having people killed. Jeremiah 29:13
HOW THE WISE MEN SOUGHT JESUS (Matthew 2:1)
The ministry of the Spirit Romans 3:11 1 John 4:19 2 Peter 3:9 John 1:9
The message of the Scripture Matthew 2:2-6 Micah 5:2 Daniel 9:24-27
The miracle of the star Matthew 2:10
WHAT THE WISE MEN BROUGHT JESUS (Matthew 2:11)
Gold speaks of His sovereign dominion. Matthew 2:2,6 2 Timothy 3:16 Daniel 9:25 Isaiah 9:7 Luke 1:33 Mat 22:21
Frankincense speaks of His sinless deity. Matthew 2:11 Exodus 30:37 Exodus 20:3 Revelation 19:10 1 Timothy 3:16
Myrrh speaks of His sacrificial death. Matthew 2:11 Mark 15:23 John 10:18 Romans 6:23 Psalm 50:12 Mark 10:17-22 1 John 5:3 2 Corinthians 2:17 Isaiah 1:18 Romans 10:13 Romans 9:33
Genesis 5:21-24 (Hebrews 11:5-6)
Genesis chapter 5 reads like an obituary. Genesis 5:8 Genesis 5:11 Genesis 5:14
Enoch did not die however, God took him. Genesis 5:24
Genesis is the seedbed for prophecy.
The life of Enoch was a picture of the rapture. Genesis 5:21-24
The main emphasis is on Enoch’s walk with God. Micah 6:8 Amos 3:3
We are to be in the presence of Lord constantly; not just at church. Psalm 46:10 Psalm 47:1 1 Timothy 2:8 Psalm 66:1
THE LIFE THAT PLEASES GOD IS A LIFE OF FAITH. (Genesis 5:24 & Hebrews 11:5-6)
It takes faith to walk with God. Romans 10:17 We never have faith until we hear from God. God speaks to us personally. Enoch was a prophet and a contemporary of Adam. Jude 14 Genesis 5:3-18 Genesis 3:8
THE LIFE THAT PLEASES GOD IS A LIFE OF FELLOWSHIP. (Genesis 5:22 & Hebrews 11:5-6)
God saved us so that we might know Him intimately. 1 John 1:7
THE LIFE THAT PLEASES GOD IS A LIFE OF FAITHFULNESS. (Genesis 5:22)
Enoch did not walk with God in an easy time.
Enoch walked with God in a time of apostasy. 1 Peter 3:20 Matthew 24:37
When Jesus is in our hearts, we have all we need to continually walk with the Lord.
THE LIFE THAT PLEASES GOD IS A LIFE OF FRUITFULNESS. (Hebrews 11:5-6)
Enoch had a powerful testimony that began with the birth of his son Methuselah. Genesis 5:22
Methuselah was the oldest man to ever live. Methuselah’s name meant, “When he is dead, it will be sent.”
When Methuselah died the flood came. Amos 3:7 2 Peter 3:9 Genesis 5:25 Genesis 5:28-29 Genesis 7:11
Methuselah lived as long as he did because of the grace and mercy of God.
Enoch walked with God after Methuselah was born because of fear of the end. Psalm 111:10 Matthew 10:28
We are to be waiting for the end of the age like Enoch. Luke 17:34-35 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 Acts 5:32
Is faith a gift from God or something we do? Both. Romans 12:3
Romans 4:11 Hebrews 11:6 Faith is the mark of a Christian. John 6:29 John 3:18 Hebrews 10:38
THE VOICE PRINCIPLE: WE MUST HEAR FROM GOD. (Hebrews 11:8)
Romans 10:17 Hearing the voice of God is the root of faith. Genesis 12:1-3 Genesis 11:1-4
Faith does not come from guessing at the will of God. 1 John 5:14 Genesis 12:7 Exodus 3:2 Acts 9:1-6 Acts 10:9-16
God has given us three ways in which He speaks to us:
We have the written Word of God. We have the mind of Christ. We have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Hebrews 1:1-2 1 Corinthians 2:14-16 Acts 16:7-10 Proverbs 4:18
THE VENTURE PRINCIPLE: WE MUST OBEY WHAT WE KNOW. (Hebrews 11:8)
Our responsibility is not to totally understand, but to readily obey.
If you’re having a faith problem, you’re probably having an obedience problem.
THE VALUE PRINCIPLE: WE MUST ESTABLISH PRIORITIES. (Hebrews 11:9-10) Matthew 6:10
Our citizenship is in Heaven. Philippians 3:20
The Bible warns about friendship with the world. James 4:4
We must not act like the world. 1 John 2:15-17
We must not be conformed to the world. Romans 12:2
If we are conformed to the world, then we will be condemned with the world. 1 Corinthians 11:32 Genesis 13 & 19
2 Corinthians 6:17 Matthew 6:33
THE VISION PRINCIPLE: WE MUST KEEP OUR FAITH FOCUSED. (Hebrews 11:10)
The operative phrase is, “he looked.” Hebrews 11:13 Colossians 3:1-2 Hebrews 11:1 2 Corinthians 4:18
Faith is setting your affection on something that is bigger than most of us are living for.
THE VIGILANCE PRINCIPLE: WE MUST GUARD OUR HEARTS. (Hebrews 11:11)
Genesis 12:10-20 1 Peter 1:7
THE VICTORY PRINCIPLE: ENJOY THE BLESSINGS. (Hebrews 11:11-12)
There is no way you can live in victory apart from faith. Romans 5:1
Hebrews 11:22; Genesis 50:22-26
Hebrews 2:14-15 The blessings in a box of bones: How to live confidently How to die expectantly
How to no longer fear death
FAITH REMEMBERS THE UNBREAKABLE PROMISES OF GOD (Genesis 50:22-26)
The key verse: Genesis 50:24 Genesis 15:13-14
The root of Joseph’s faith was he had a promise from God. Romans 10:17 Hebrews 11:1 John 14:3 Hebrews 6:19
FAITH RELIES ON THE UNSHAKABLE POWER OF GOD (Genesis 50:24)
Joseph’s faith was not shaken by fickle emotions. Romans 1:17 John 5:24
Joseph’s faith was not stampeded by circumstances.
Joseph’s faith was not challenged by his emotion.
Joseph’s faith was not eroded by long delay. Habakkuk 2:3 Ezekiel 26:3, 12-14 2 Peter 3:4, 8
FAITH RESTS IN THE UNMISTAKABLE PEACE OF GOD. (Genesis 50:24)
Exodus 13:18-19 Joshua 24:32 Daniel 12:2 John 5:28-29 Philippians 3:20-21 1 Corinthians 15:54-58
Hebrews 9:27 John 1:12
Hebrews 10:38 Habakkuk 2:4
Faith is my acceptance of God’s acceptance of me. Romans 5:1
The reason we are disobedient is because we do not believe the Word of God. Malachi 3:10
THE DESCRIPTION OF FAITH (Hebrews 11:1-2)
What faith is not:
Faith is not blind superstition.
Faith is not positive thinking or feelings of optimism.
Faith is not a leap in the dark.
Faith is not faith in faith. Mark 11:22
What faith is:
A confidence that rests in hope. Hebrews 11:1
A conviction that sees the invisible. Hebrews 11:1 John 8:46 Colossians 1:16
A communication that comes from Heaven. Hebrews 11:2
Faith should not be altered by appearances. Hebrews 11:1 John 20:29 1 Peter 1:18
Faith should not be fettered by feelings.
Faith is not limited by logic. John 6:1-3
THE DYNAMICS OF FAITH
Faith is the dynamic of spiritual wisdom. Hebrews 11:3 Hebrews 11:6
All people are believers. There are those who believe in God and those who believe there is no God. Job 38:4
Faith is the dynamic in spiritual worship. Hebrews 11:6 John 20:29
Faith is the heart’s response to the character of God. Isaiah 53:2 Hebrews 3:12
Faith is the dynamic in spiritual wealth. Hebrews 11:6 Matthew 9:29 Mark 11:24
THE DESTINATION OF A LIFE OF FAITH (Hebrews 12:1-2)
What is the destination of a life of faith? To find, follow and finish the will of God.
How to arrive at the destination of faith:
Be motivated by the saints around us. Hebrews 12:1
Be separated by the surplus upon us. Hebrews 12:1
Be liberated from the snares beneath us. Hebrews 12:1
Be dedicated to the Savior above us. Hebrews 12:2 Romans 10:17 John 10:10
In our economy, the dollar is the medium of exchange; but in the Kingdom of Heaven, faith is the medium of exchange. Matthew 9:29 Hebrews 11:6 Not only do we need to possess faith, but we need for faith to possess us. We need a mighty faith because we have a mighty God.
THE PROBLEM OF A SUPERSTITIOUS FAITH (John 4:46-48)
This man’s faith was based upon signs and wonders; he depended upon his five senses rather than upon the Word of God. Jesus had performed a miracle at Cana; because of this, many people followed after Him, seeking a miracle rather than seeking the Messiah. John 2:23-25
Jesus performed many signs and wonders, as did the early apostles. The point of these miracles was that we might believe on Jesus; that we would seek a Savior rather than a sign. Acts 2:22 John 20:30-31
2 Corinthians 12:12 Hebrews 2:4 Matthew 12:39
What is wrong with seeking a sign?
It dishonors God. 1 John 5:10 John 20:25-31
It can be deceiving. Matthew 24:24 2 Thessalonians 2:9 Revelation 13:13-14
THE PROGRESSION OF STRONG FAITH (John 4:49-53)
He heard the Word of God. (John 4:49-50) Faith is not receiving from God what you want; faith is accepting from God what He gives. Faith is taking God at His Word. Romans 10:14, 17
He believed the Word of God. (John 4:50) Romans 14:23
He obeyed the Word of God. (John 4:50-51) Romans 16:26 James 2:26
He rested in the Word of God. (John 4:51-53) Psalm 37:5-7 Isaiah 28:16
THE PROVISION OF SAVING FAITH (John 4:53)
All of the miracles of Jesus point to a greater miracle, which is the new birth. Luke 19:10 Matthew 9:12
What good is a miracle if we never surrender to the Lordship of Christ and receive salvation? What good is to be healed if we eventually die without Jesus? Jesus still performs miracles, but we must never substitute the miracle for the Miracle Worker.