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The Pride of Life 1 John 2:15-17

Pride of Life 1 John 2:15-17 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

When we preach 1 Jn 2:16, we often talk about the lusts and talk little about the pride of life.  But the pride of life is an enormous problem.  The trouble with pride is that it is a root.  Therefore, it is sometimes hard to detect.  Here are some ways that the pride of life is manifested:

I’m going to do something BIG for God – Matt 26:31-35 – Peter said, “Yet will I never be offended… though I should die with thee…”  These other guys might fail you, but not me.  I’ll be right here with you to the end.  That’s some big talk.  Pride is the motive when you are trying to make a good impression on God or on someone else.  Whether you say it or not, you’re thinking, “Look at me,” (secretly).

I’m going to be the shining example to others – 1 Tim 3:6 – a novice is prone to pride that makes him think he is better than others.  Elijah was no novice and he got caught up in this problem with pride.   In 1 Ki 19:10, he said, “I, even I only, am left.”  That wasn’t true.  In 1 Ki 19:18, the Lord said, “I have left me seven thousand in Israel that have not bowed the knee to Baal.  You get the idea that you are God’s gift to whomever you are ministering.  There’s no one else that can do it quite like you.  You’d never say this, but you believe it.  Paul said, “… but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise,” [2 Cor 10:12].

I’m going do what’s right – Jud 17:6 – before Israel had a king, every man did that which was right… (in his own eyes).  Prov 19:21 says, “There are many devices in a man’s heart.”  But it goes on to say, “nevertheless, the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand.”  Men, because of the pride of life, often think “What I’m doing is right” without saying “because I said so.”  They usually say, “Because God told me to.”  People go to hell doing what’s right.  Prov 14:12, “there is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”  He’s thinking, “This is right; God’s going to bless this.”  No.  Right is what’s right in God’s eyes, not yours.

I’m going to do the desires of my heart – Ps 37:4 – most people read Ps 37:4 like this, “he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.”  And when they are presented with something they want they say, “It must be of God because it’s the desire of my heart.  I have prayed for this, it’s what I desire, so you know this is from God.”  That’s the pride of life.  Your life is like a game board.  You’re moving all the pieces, making all the plans, rolling the dice, and figuring all the strategy.  God reaches down and messes with your game and you get mad at him.  He’s just trying to show you that you can’t control everything in your life like that.  He has far better plans than you do.  Life throws you a curve ball and you get mad because you didn’t expect that problem.  So, you redouble your efforts and blame others when your plans aren’t working.  You missed the key part of the verse, which says, “Delight thyself in the Lord.”  You have been delighting yourself in you and your plans.

Conclusion: check your life for pride. The pride of life will destroy you.

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For Thy Good Deut.10:12-13

For Thy Good Deut. 10:12-13 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

In Deut 10:12-13 we see that there are some things that the Lord requires of you that are for thy good.

To fear the Lord is for thy good – Deut 10:12 – the fear of the Lord yields knowledge, wisdom, confidence, prolonged days, and a clean life – these are good for you.

To walk in all his ways is for thy good – Deut 10:12 – his ways are smooth, unencumbered, safe, secure, and always moving upward – that’s certainly good for you.

To love him with all thy heart and soul is for thy good – Deut 10:12 – when you love the Lord you are likewise loved by the Lord – you’re love for him becomes preeminent – your love for others improves – your love for the world wanes – your affection for things above strengthens and your love for things on the earth diminishes – you rejoice always – his instruction and leadership in your life become clearer and your life changes for the better – you are satisfied.

To serve him with all thy heart and soul is for thy good – Deut 10:12 – there is a principle found in Lk 6:38 that says, “Give and it shall be given unto you” – the significance of this verse in your case is that you always get a lot more out of serving than you do out of being served – not only now but also in eternity [Matt 20:26-28].

To keep the commandments of the Lord is for thy good – Deut 10:13 – if people in the world followed the commandments the world would be a far better place than it is today – likewise when you follow the commandments you are a better person and you are happier with yourself – they keep you out of trouble and keep you from drowning in your own guilt and shame.

Conclusion: You might have been inclined to believe that these things were for the Lord’s good.  But if you will trust his words and do what he says you will find that in fact these things really are for thy good.

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Ignoring the Lord Num. 22:12-13

Ignoring the Lord Num. 22:12-13 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

This sermon is about ignoring the Lord. I preach this message in the fear of the Lord.  The Lord may have spoken to us in his words and in preaching about a particular matter and to think that we may have ignored him is indeed a thought that causes one to tremble.

We are preaching about Balaam. In Num 22-24 we find, by his responses to the word of the Lord, that Balaam ignored what the Lord said.  Often, I believe, we also ignore what God is saying.  By thus ignoring the Lord, we get ourselves into lots of trouble.

The Lord said, “Thou shalt not go with them; thou shalt not curse the people; for they are blessed.” At one time or another, Balaam ignored each part of this message.  He went with them, he attempted to curse the people and they were indeed blessed.  Why did Balaam ignore these words?

Balaam ignored the Lord by:

Failing to say all that the Lord had said to him – Num 22:13 – like Moses and Aaron – contrast Ex 4:22-23 with Ex 5:1-3 – when God gives us a message, we are to deliver the whole thing and not just a piece of it [1 Sam 3:17; Acts 20:27] – when you ignore part of the message, you will undoubtedly ignore the part that is the most distasteful to you and, yet, the one that will keep you out of trouble later.

Failing to recognize the deceitfulness of his own heart – Num 22:16-18 – Balaam wanted the honor of prophesying for Balak and he wanted the reward that came with it – this is the error of Balaam [Jude 11] – many men who are in the ministry ignore the Lord and are in it for personal honor and wealth – you can hardly believe the things you will do to get what you want – and these strong desires will deceive you into ignoring the Lord.

Failing to follow what the Lord said the first time – Num 22:12, 19 – the Lord had no reason to tell Balaam any more than what he had already spoken – Balaam needed to follow what the Lord said rather than to see if he could hear something “more” from the Lord that would allow him to go to Balak – when the Lord has denied you then it is time for you to let it go – you must quit ignoring what the Lord said and quit pushing.

Failing to follow what the Lord said the second time – Num 22:20 – the Lord said “if” the men come to call thee, rise up, and go with them” – but he didn’t wait for them to call – he just saddled up and went with them [Num 22:21] because that’s what HE wanted to do – often you take a course of action because you are acting on the part of the message that favors what you want to do without considering the limiting conditions the Lord has placed on your actions – when the Lord gives you more light in his words, don’t ignore a thing he says.

Failing to recognize God’s resistance to his progress – Num 22:22-34 – God was mad at Balaam and he was opposing Balaam along the course he was taking [the way of Balaam, 2 Pet 2:15] – often God will put up “obstacles” in your path when you are heading in a way that displeases him – you must recognize these as hindrances from the Lord, rather than from Satan, and you cannot ignore them.

Failing to limit himself to the words of God – Num 22:35 – Balaam was supposed to only speak what the Lord said to him – however, it is obvious from Num 25:1-2 that Balaam told Balak more than what God said – this is called the doctrine of Balaam [Rev 2:14] – he taught Balak that God would destroy the Jews for fornicating with the daughters of Moab and for sacrificing to their gods – you cannot ignore the Lord and add to God’s words for any reason without terrible consequences.

Failing to realize that God’s blessings on Israel would result in God’s curse against him – Num 31:8 – when Balaam advised Balak of the whoredoms and sacrifices that could hurt the Jews, and thereby gain himself some honor and recognition and perhaps some gain, he opposed God – he ignored God’s blessing on Israel – you cannot oppose Israel, the blessed nation, without putting yourself under a curse!!

Conclusion: You cannot ignore God and get away with it – you must listen carefully to every word he speaks and follow every thing he says.

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Rooted and Grounded Eph 3:17

Rooted and Grounded Eph 3:17 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

Eph 3:17 says, “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love…”  And then the thought continues into the next verse.  Today we are going to talk about being rooted and grounded.  We are going to look at this verse from the standpoint of Christians who don’t pan out and grow – who don’t take root downward and bear fruit upward Is 37:31.  If you are one of those,

Your problem may be that you are not rooted and grounded in:

The Lord Jesus Christ – Eph 3:17 – other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ [1Cor 3:11] – upon this rock I will build my church [Matt 16:18] – the foundation… Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone [Eph 2:20] – Jesus is the root and offspring of David [Rev 22:16] – you have been performing but you have not been saved.

The word of God – the word was sown in your heart and came up but you had no root in you [Mk 4:16-17] – or you had a little root that came up in the thorns [Mk 4:18-19] – now you are tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine [Eph 4:14].

The church – the church is the pillar and ground of the truth [1 Tim 3:15] – the church is the household of God [Eph 2:19-22; 1 Pet 2:5] – God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him [1 Cor 12:18].

The love of Christ – you are saved, you know the Bible doctrines, you are in church but you are not in the love of God [Jude 21] – your walk with God is non-existent [2 Cor 6:16, 17] – you have virtually no fellowship with Christ [1 Jn 1:3].

Conclusion: Now if you find yourself in any one of these cases you have found out why you haven’t grown, why your life hasn’t changed since you have been saved, why there is no spiritual evidence of salvation – you are not rooted and grounded – and you can begin to change this today by getting rooted and grounded in the thing or things that are needed.

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It is a Matter of Counsel. II Sam. 15:1

It’s a Matter of Counsel II Sam. 15:1 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

(2 Samuel 15:1-12,30-37 ; 16:15-23 ; 17:1-15 ; 18:1-9)

In this sermon we will deal with the subject of counsel and why it is so necessary in the lives of saved people. The passage we will use is lengthy but it shows us the story of how Absalom takes over the kingdom and is destroyed in the process.

Absalom has a desire to overthrow King David and starts his process many years before the actual event takes place. He first puts himself in the position to steal the hearts of the people. Then he assembles men on his behalf. He goes to Hebron and announces himself as the king. It is not until after all this is done that he calls for Ahithopel who was David’s counselor to become his counselor. David leaves Jerusalem and sends Hushai to Absalom to act on his behalf.

Both Ahithopel and Hushai gave counsel to Absalom on how to defeat David. Hushai’s counsel sounded better to Absalom than the counsel of Ahithopel. So Absalom followed the counsel of Hushai and they were defeated in battle. Absalom gets caught up in the tree and eventually killed.

The Purpose of Counsel :

1)  Safety to avoid a fall (Proverbs 11:4)

  • The first purpose of counsel is for your safety.
  • Safety equipment can be a burden to wear and work in, but it can save your life.
  • Counsel can be a burden to get an follow but in the end it can save your life.

Proverbs 1:5 “A wise man will hear and will increase learning and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsel.”

Proverbs 12:15 “The way of the fool is right in his own eyes : but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.”

2)  Establish Purposes (Proverbs 15:22)

  • There are many good purposes that people have for their lives; the problem is that they end up disappointed because of no counsel or rejecting counsel.
  • Many times good people with good ministries are disappointed over the issue of counsel.
  • Getting the right counsel is hard work but well worth the effort.

Proverbs 20:5 “Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out.”

3)  Get to the truth of the matter (Proverbs 19:20-21)

  • The reason that everyone needs counsel is because their heart will deceive them (Jeremiah 17:9).
  • Any time we are emotionally involved with the decision that needs to be made or with the person that is asking us for counsel we need counsel to help us sort out the devices in our own hearts so that we can find out what the truth really is.
  • Kids should counsel with their parents and pastor, but the parents should counsel with the pastor in regards to their counsel for kids.
  • Remember the heart will fool us but the counsel of the Lord shall stand.

What can we learn from Absalom in regards to counsel?

1)  Everyone needs counsel (2 Samuel 15:12)

  • Absalom sought for David’s counselor. This shows us that even though David was king and a great warrior he still needed counsel.
  • Many people think that because they know a lot of Bible or have been to Bible college that they don’t need counsel in their lives.
  • The truth of the matter is they probably need it more because their knowledge is blocking their judgment, it is like one of those devices from the heart in Proverbs 19:20-21.

2)  Good counsel will not fix a bad idea (2 Samuel 17:23)

  • Ahithopel was a good counselor but his counsel would not fix the bad idea of Absalom.
  • Remember that Absalom planned out the takeover of the throne and put all the pieces in play and then he sought out a counselor.
  • Most people today do the same as Absalom the already have all the pieces in motion and have made up their minds to their course of action. Then they go to the pastor so it will look like they are asking for counsel. In reality they are just looking for conformation to their decision that they have already made.

3)  Be careful where you get your counsel from (2 Samuel 15:12 ; 16-15-23)

  • Absalom sought his counsel from a spy who was secretly working for David.
  • It is amazing who people will go to for counsel. Many think that because others have the same problem they will make good counselors. But that is like going to a drunk to get help with drinking.
  • Your counsel needs to be a counselor who will use the word of God to counsel by. It is also probably best for that person to not be emotionally attached to you.
  • If you’re a teenager then don’t go to teens or other people close to your age. Go to someone who has walked down that road and knows something about what you are facing.

4)  In the end you are responsible for what you do with counsel (2 Samuel 18:1-8)

  • Absalom ends up dead because of his handling of counsel.
  • In the end you are responsible for what you do with counsel. In the event that you get conflicting counsel go with the word of God. But for you to do this successfully you will have to have practiced using the word of God and good counsel before (Hebrews 5:12-14)

 

 

 

 

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God Uses Ordinary People John 1:35

God Uses Ordinary People John 1:35 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

When I entered high school, I attended St. Anthony Seminary in San Antonio, Texas, with the intention of becoming a priest.  However, by the spring of my freshman year I knew that I didn’t want to return to St. Anthony for my Sophomore year.  So, I sent my transcript to a company that would forward it to prep schools in the southeast United States.  I was notified by some of my acceptance for my junior year, but I wanted to enroll as a sophomore. In July, I was accepted by McCallie School in Chattanooga, Tennessee.  Thus, I began my Sophomore year at McCallie.

While at McCallie, I was invited to a Fellowship of Christian Athletes meeting where I heard a testimony from another high school athlete about his relationship with Jesus Christ.  I told the chaplain, Rocky Young, following the meeting that the student who gave that testimony had a relationship with Jesus Christ that I wanted.  So, on the way back to the campus, Rocky preached the gospel to me and I received Jesus Christ that night. Who in the world could have arranged all of the circumstances necessary to get me to that meeting on that night to hear that testimony and be saved?  I believe it was God and he simply used ordinary people in ordinary circumstances to accomplish something very extraordinary in my life.

God uses ordinary people in ordinary circumstances to accomplish extraordinary things.  Look at these examples from the Bible.

Andrew – Jn 1:40-41 – Andrew was used by God to tell his brother, Peter, about Jesus Christ.  It is very natural for a fellow to be concerned about his brother’s soul [Lk 16:27-28].

Philip – Jn 1:43-51 – Philip was used by God to bring Nathaniel to Jesus.  It is very natural for a fellow to be concerned about hid friend’s soul.

Cornelius – Acts 10:23-24 – The circumstances of God getting Peter to Cornelius’ house are unusual, for sure.  However, when Peter arrived, he found Cornelius with his kinsmen and near friends.  It is certainly not unusual for a man to be concerned about the souls of his kinsmen and near friends.  Yet, Cornelius was just an ordinary man, a soldier.

God sends us, ordinary people, to preach to people in ordinary circumstances so that he can accomplish extraordinary things [Rom 10:14-15].  Look how he sent Philip to the Ethiopian eunuch in Acts 8:21-27.  Is it not remarkable that Philip got there right at the moment that the eunuch was reading Is 53?  Only God could arrange the timing of the meeting like that.  There’s no soul winning method or program that can accomplish something like this.

We make a mistake thinking that there is some right method or right program to follow to make us soul winners.  Paul’s custom was to go to synagogues and preach [Acts 13:5].  He also preached publicly and in peoples houses [Acts 20:20].  He was a pioneer to get the gospel into regions where it had not been preached.  He preached where he found the people.  Apollos was mighty in the scriptures and when he preached, he was persuasive [Acts 18:28].  Peter went to Jews, primarily.  They were all very different and none of them had the ideal soul winning program for others to follow.  As a matter of fact, Paul had to reprove the Corinthians for aligning themselves with the men God was using [1 Cor 1:12; 1 Cor 3:3-6].  This is God’s business and he uses whom he wants to use the way he wants to use him.  There’s no pattern.

You ask, what can I do, as an ordinary person, to be used by the Lord in the ordinary circumstances of my life?

Present yourself to the Lord – Rom 12:1 – make yourself available so that God can use you.

Intercede for others – 1 Tim 2:1, Heb 7:25 – pray for your loved ones, your neighbors, your near friends, and so forth.  Prayer, like the priests in the Old Testament, keeps the names of these folks on your heart [breastplate].  You stay burdened for their souls [onyx stones on shoulders].   God works in their lives and in yours in preparation for a time to preach to them.

Read the Bible – 1 Pet 4:11 – the Bible cleanses you [Jn 15:3] and loads you up with scripture that the Holy Spirit will bring back to your memory [Jn 14:26] so that you can speak as the oracles of God.  This is what they need to hear.

Ask the Lord to send you – Is 6:8 – when the Lord is ready to send someone to the folks, for whom you have been praying, be willing to go.  Let him send you.

Follow the lead of the Holy Spirit – Rom 8:14 – so that it is not you or others putting pressure on you to go, but the Holy Spirit leading you to go.

Preach Jesus – Acts 8:35 – when the Lord opens the opportunity, get down to the business at hand.  Tell them about the Lord Jesus Christ.  Open the Bible and let them see how to be saved.

Conclusion: God uses ordinary people in ordinary circumstances to do extraordinary things.  He will use you.

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Oppositions of Science 1 Tim. 6:20-21

Oppositions of Science 1 Tim. 6:20-21 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

The main theme of this lesson on the last two verses of 1 Timothy is oppositions of science falsely so called.  Before we expound this part of the verse, we’ll deal with the other aspects of the passage.

First, Paul told Timothy to keep that which is committed to thy trust.  Paul had been entrusted with the gospel by the Lord [1 Tim 1:11].  And then Paul committed what he had been given to Timothy, according to the principle of 2 Tim 2:2.  Now Timothy had to keep what was entrusted to him so that he could commit it unto other faithful men who could teach others also.  The truth breaks down when faithful men fail to keep what has been entrusted to them by those before them.  This breakdown has resulted in the widespread apostasy that you see today.

Second, Paul told Timothy to avoid profane and vain babblings.  Profane means secular or unholy.  Vain means worthless or unprofitable.  Babble means foolish or meaningless talk.  Basically, Timothy was not to waste his time with conversations and discourses that don’t edify [Eph 4:29; 1 Tim 1:4].  He was to stick with the scripture [2 Tim 3:16-17] which is profitable.

Third, Paul told Timothy to avoid oppositions of science falsely so called.  Notice that the “science” is not really science [Dan 1:4]; it is science “falsely so called.” That means it is “called” science, but it is not science.  Science is supposed to be systematized knowledge derived from observation, study and experimentation which has been proved to be so by actual demonstration.

Notice that this “so-called” science is in opposition to that which was committed to Timothy’s trust.  Professors [1 Tim 6:21] of such so called science err concerning the faith.  In other words, they don’t believe the words of God, so they oppose them with what they “call” science.  While their vocabulary and hypotheses may sound intellectual and impressive, their conclusions are not scientific.  Then cannot “demonstrate” and “prove” what they profess to believe.

For instance, professors, who use “science” to oppose the words of God, say that God didn’t create the universe, it evolved.  However, when applying science to this hypothesis we find that their theory of how we got here cannot be true.

There are only four possibilities for the existence of our universe.

  • The universe has always been here.  This requires the eternity of matter.
  • The universe has not always been here.  This requires a “big bang” where it formed accidentally out of nothing.
  • The universe is not here.  It is just an illusion.
  • The universe was created supernaturally and miraculously.

Three of these theories are contrary to the facts of science.  The laws of thermodynamics, which have been scientifically demonstrated, prove that these theories are wrong.  Only number four could be right [Ps 8:3, 19:1, Acts 14:15; Is 40:25-26].

Law 1 – neither energy nor matter can be created or destroyed; they can only be altered or transformed.  Thus, Neh 9:6 says that God had to do it since a big bang out of nothing is a scientific impossibility.  See Heb 11:3.

Law 2 – there is aways entropy in a closed system.  Everything runs down [Is 51:6].  Energy dissipates.  Though the amount of energy never changes, the amount of AVAILABLE energy is always less.  Therefore, the universe could not have always been here.  It would have already “waxed old” as a garment by now.  You can prove that [1 Thes 5:21].

Then the laws of biogenetics must be considered.  Life comes from life.  Every living organism came from a living organism.

Thus, scientists are left with only the third or fourth possibilities to choose from.  Since the third possibility is an absolute delusion [2 Thes 2:10-12], then they must make up lies “called” science to reject the fourth possibility.  This lie is called evolution.  There is nothing scientific about evolution.  They have manufactured a religion that they deny is a religion.

Dr. Ruckman said, “Once you were a tadpole when you began to begin and then you were a frog with your tail tucked in, and next you were a monkey in a banyan tree and now you are a scientist with a Ph.D.

The fruit of science falsely so called is stated by Paul Davies, an evolutionist, who said, “How did stupid atoms spontaneously write their own software, and where did the very peculiar form of information needed to get the first living cell up and running come from? Nobody know.”  That’s brilliant.

There is enough information in your genetic code that if you put the characters in a line they would reach to the sun and back several times.  The sun is 93,000,000 miles from earth.  That is a lot of information written in your genetic code.  As Ray Comfort demonstrates in “The Atheist Delusion,” as published books don’t randomly exist [with ink and paper and binding and correct vocabulary, grammar and punctuation] neither did your genetic code “book” randomly occur.  It was written by God.

Like Paul told Timothy, “avoid… oppositions of science falsely so called.”  If you want more information, read Dr. Ruckman’s book, The Christian’s Handbook of Science and Philosophy.  And watch the DVD, “Does Biology Make Sense Without Darwin?” with David Menton.  Both are very helpful.

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The Work of the Holy Spirit

The Work of the Holy Spirit

The work of the Holy Spirit is so vital to our Christianity, yet we often go through our day without even a notice of his presence. In this lesson, we will touch on just a few of the things that He does.

He Reproves the world of Sin, Righteousness, and Judgment [Jn.16:7-12]

  1. He convicts the lost to bring them to salvation
  2. He convicts the saved to keep them clean and living right
  3. We need the work of the Holy Spirit before and after salvation

He Creates and Regenerates the new believer

  1. [Gen.1:2] He was active in creation
  2. [Jn.3:3-8] You are born again by the Spirit of God

He Seals your Salvation

  1. [Eph.1:13-14] The spirit of promise
  2. [Eph.4:30] Until the day of redemption

He bears witness to you of your salvation

  1. [1 Jn.4:13] the knowledge that he dwells in you
  2. [Rom.8:16] confirms that you are a child of God

He teaches you Bible

  1. [Jn.14:26] and brings all things into remembrance
  2. [Jn.16:13-15] guides you into all truth

He intercedes in prayer for you

  1. [Rom.8:26-27] all your prayer into the will of God
  2. [Eph.2:18] part of your access to God

He comforts you in time of need

  1. [Jn.14:15-18] Comforter abiding with you
  2. [2Cor.1:3-4] The God of all comfort, so you can comfort others

He empowers you to serve God

  1. [Eph.3:16] strengthened with might by his Spirit
  2. [2 Cor.4:7] the power may be of God and not of us

He gives you discernment in decision making

  1. [1 Cor.2:11-16] the mind of Christ
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Forgiveness

Forgiveness (Ephesians 4:32)

This is one of the great verses in the word of God in regards to forgiving others as saved people. It is often quoted in sermons and teachings on the subject. In this lesson we will look at some verses and biblical principles on forgiveness.

The example for forgiveness :

In the verse from Ephesians the example is Jesus Christ and our salvation. If God can forgive us on the bases of Jesus Christ then surely we can forgive on using the same principle.

Acts 13:38 (The Lord Jesus Christ is the bases for Forgiveness)

Ephesians 1:7 (Our Forgiveness is through his shed blood)

Colossians 2:13 (Our forgiveness is complete)

God can be right in forgiving us because of the shed blood of Jesus Christ. If God can do that for us surely we can do it for others.

Why is it so hard to forgive even as a saved person?

I believe the answer lies in the fact that it is the flesh is what does not want to forgive. Remember the flesh is not saved and note in the passage (Ephesians 4:30-32) unforgiveness would be grieving the Holy Spirit of God. Remember also after we get saved the spirit and the flesh are at a constant struggle. Therefore with the example it seems that forgiveness is not just a physical thing but a spiritual thing also.

How often should we forgive?

In Luke 17 1-4 we see an important principle on forgiveness from the Lord Jesus Christ.

  • It doesn’t matter how many times someone trespasses against you if they repent you should forgive them.

The Danger of not forgiving :

In 2 Corinthians 2:10-11 Paul shows us that Satan can use unforgivness as a device against saved people. And this simple device as destroyed many churches and many saved people.

 

Forgiveness (Ephesians 4:32)

Handout

 

1)  What is the thought in Ephesians 4:32?

 

2)  Give a chain reference for verses on forgiveness that are connected with our salvation.

 

3)  What does Ephesians 4:32 mean in regards to us?

 

4)  Why is it hard to forgive even as a saved person?

 

5)  What is the principle that Jesus gives in Luke 17:3-4 in regards to forgiveness?

 

6)  What is the danger on not being willing to forgive?

 

 

 

 

 

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The Lord Is Not Among You Num.14:42

The Lord Is Not Among You Num-14:42 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

In this passage, the spies have returned from Canaan and 10 of the 12 of them talked the people out of following the Lord into Canaan.  After the people refused to go, the Lord pronounced that all of the men over 20 would die within the next 40 years while the Jews wandered around in the wilderness.  Then the 10 rebellious spies died by the plague.  When the people heard the Lord’s pronouncement and saw the death of the spies, they were determined to go into Canaan and fight for the land.  That’s when Moses said, “Go not up, for the Lord is not among you; that ye be not smitten before your enemies.”

How many times have you found yourself leading your family or others into something and the Lord is not among you? I believe that more often than not the Lord is not among you in your endeavors. The Lord is not among you when you:

Disobey the clear direction of the Lord – Num 13:2 – the Lord told them that he was giving them the land of Canaan – they were to reconnoiter in Canaan to know how to go in and take the land – when they came out and refused to attack, the were disobeying God’s will.

Walk by sight and not by faith – Num 13:27-29 – the Lord had proved to them over and over with his plagues, with his deliverance from Egypt, with his miraculous crossing of the Red Sea, with his destruction of Pharaoh, and so forth that if he wanted them in the land he was going to get them there regardless of how big the inhabitants were – but they didn’t believe him – what they saw diminished their faith in God.

Reject the wise counsel of godly men – Num 13:30-31 – there was a different spirit in Caleb than in the other spies [Num 14:24] – he was a godly man – his counsel was far greater than the majority of the spies that had gone into the land – when the people refused to heed his counsel, they refused to follow the Lord.

Follow the counsel of ungodly men – Num 13:32-33 – the 10 spies brought up an evil report of the land – they were determined to defeat the counsel of Joshua and Caleb – and they succeeded in convincing the people against the Lord, against Joshua and Caleb and against Moses and Aaron.

Move contrary to the spiritual authorities in your life – Num 14:2 – Moses and Aaron were being used by God to provide spiritual direction to the Jews – so when they decided to turn away from Canaan, they murmured against Moses and Aaron and they would not follow them – you must remember that these were the men who interceded for them every time they got in trouble with God [Num 14:11-21].

Determine to do “God’s will” your own way – Num 14:40-45 – the Jews, after they had seen the consequences of their sin, were determined to go do what God said – but the Lord was not among them and so they were smitten before their enemies – they refused to do God’s will God’s way and so it wouldn’t work – God’s will must be done according to God’s timing and God’s way.

Conclusion: If you disobey the clear direction of God in your life, walk by sight and not by faith, reject the wise counsel of godly men, follow the counsel of ungodly men [Ps 1], move contrary to the spiritual authorities in your life, determine to do God’s will your way, then you will find that the Lord is not among you and you will fail in time.

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