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Monthly Archives: July 2012

WHAT THE BIBLE TEACHES ABOUT HOW GOD WILL NEVER LEAVE US OR FORSAKE US

                               God Shall Be With You

 
TEXT: 2 Cor. 13:11-12
 
INTRODUCTION:
 
A. COMMON EXPRESSION – “GOD BE WITH YOU”
 
B. GREATEST POSSIBLE BLESSING( Rom. 8:31 ).
 
C. HOW WE BE ASSURED OF HIS PRESENCE?
 
I. BE PERFECTED.
 
A. katartizo, “TO RENDER FIT OR COMPLETE, USED OF MENDING NETS,
 
RESTORE( Gal. 6:1 ). “RIGHT ORDERING OR ARRANGEMENT OF OUR
 
LIVES, MAKING SUITABLE.
 
B. IN ORDER TO BE WITH GOD, ONE MUST BE PERFECTED.
 
1. Perfection begins in the heart (Isa. 38:3; Prov. 20:9; 23:7).
 
2. His life must be in harmony with the word ( Phil. 1:27 ).
 
3. Perfection is in God’s word ( 2 Tim. 3:16-17 ). “Instruction in righteousness.”
 
4. To walk in righteousness is to walk with God ( 1 John 1:6-7 ).
 
C. PERFECTION WILL BRING ONE TO OBEDIENCE( Heb. 13:20-21 ).
 
II. BE COMFORTED.
 
A. parakleo, “CONSOLATION.”
 
B. RECURRENT THEME IN 2 Cor. REFERS BACK TO 2 Cor. 1:3-11.
 
– Look at verse by verse.
 
C. COMFORT LINKED WITH JOY ( 2 Cor. 7:4, 13 ).
 
III. BE OF THE SAME MIND.
 
A. IMPLIES UNITY OF DOCTRINE ( 1 Cor. 1:10; Eph. 4:4-6 ).
 
B. UNITY OF ATTITUDE ( Eph. 4:1-3 ).
 
C. UNITY OF JUDGMENT ( 1 Cor. 1:10 ).
 
1. Same preoccupation ( Phil. 1:27; Col. 3:1-2 ).
 
2. Lay aside every weight ( Heb. 12:1-2 ).
 
IV. LIVE IN PEACE.
 
A. IMPLIES HARMONY, TRANQUILLITY – WHEN MORE THAN ONE IS
 
INVOLVED, FELLOWSHIP
 
B. PEACE IN THREE AREAS.
 
1. Peace with our fellowman( Rom. 12:18; Heb. 12:14; Mat. 5:9 ).
 
2. Peace with God ( Rom. 5:1; 2 Cor. 5:18-21 ).
 
3. Peace with ourselves ( John 16:33; Phil. 4:4-7 ).
 
CONCLUSION:
 
A. THE RESULT OF ALL THESE THINGS IN OUR LIVES IS THAT GOD WILL BE WITH US.
 
B. TO BE WITHOUT GOD IS TO BE WITHOUT HOPE
 
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Posted by on July 31, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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HOW THE BIBLE DESCRIBES PEOPLE’S REACTION TO THE PREACHING OF THE WORD

                           Reactions to the Preached Word

 
TEXT: Acts 17:11
 
INTRODUCTION:
 
A. GOD INTENDS TO SAVE PEOPLE THROUGH THE GOSPEL ( Rom. 1:16-17 ).
 
B. IT MUST BE PREACHED.
 
1. Great Commission’s goal ( Mark 16:15 ).
 
2. How can they believe except they hear ( Rom. 10:13-15 ).
 
3. God’s plan ( 1 Cor. 1:21 ).
 
C. AN INTELLECTUAL PROCESS.
 
1. Where does faith come from? ( Rom. 10:17; John 20:30-31 ).
 
2. That is not to say you must have a high IQ ( 1 Cor. 1:26 ).
 
3. God’s appeal is an appeal to reason ( Acts 17:2; John 6:44-45 ).
 
D. NOT ALL PREACHING IS PLEASANT ( 2 Tim. 4:2 ).
 
E. BEFORE THE WORD CAN WORK IT MUST BE RECEIVED ( 1 Tim. 2:13 ).
 
F. WE MAY PROFIT FROM A STUDY OF THE VARIOUS REACTIONS PEOPLE IN THE BOOK OF ACTS HAD TO THE PREACHED WORD.
 
I. THE BEREANS ( Acts 17:11 ).
 
A. OPEN MINDED ç è NARROW MINDED.
 
B. THE RESULT OFTHIS ATTITUDE:
 
1. Many believed ( vs. 12 ).
 
2. Even those who didn’t, but listened called “noble.”
 
II. THE JEWS WHO HEARD STEPHEN ( Acts 7 ).
 
A. STEPHEN SAW THE NEED TO “GET TOUGHT” ( vs. 51-53 ).
 
B. THEY “GOT TOUGH” BACK ( vs. 54-60 ).
 
C. THE PROBLEM IS NOT THAT THEY TOOK PERSONALLY WHAT STEPHENSAID. THEY WERE SUPPOSED TO APPLY TO SELF.
 
D. THE PROBLEM – WRONG REACTION ( 2 Cor. 7:10 ).
 
III. CONTRAST è THOSE WHO HEARD PETER ( Acts 2:36-37 ).
 
A. PETER REASONED TO THE LORDSHIP OF JESUS.
 
B. THEY WERE CONVICTED è “PRICKED IN THEIR HEART.”
 
IV. THE COUNCIL ( Acts 4 ).
 
A. THE SIMPLE GOSPEL ( vs. 8-12 ).
 
B. COULD NOT REFUTE IT ( vs. 13-14 ).
 
C. SOUGHT TO SUPPRESS IT ( vs. 17-21 )
 
V. GENTILES ON MARS HILL ( Acts 17 ).
 
A. SOME MOCKED ( vs. 32 ).
 
B. SOME WERE MERELY CURIOUS ( vs. 32 ).
 
C. BUT SOME BELIEVED ( vs. 34 ).
 
VI. JEWS IN ANTIOCH OF PISIDIA ( Acts 13 ).
 
A. JEALOUSY PROVOKED THEM TO RUDENESS ( vs. 45 ).
 
B. THE WORDS OF BARNABAS ( vs. 46 ).
 
VII. OTHERS.
 
A. FELIX ( Acts 24:25 ).
 
B. FESTUS ( Acts 26:24-29 ). AGRIPPA – “With but little persuasion.”
 
VIII. SOME WHO RECEIVED HIS WORD.
 
A. Acts 2:41; 8:12.
 
B. THE EUNUCH ( Acts 8:36 ).
 
C. THE JAILOR ( Acts 16:33ff ).
 
D. CRISPUS ( Acts 18:8 ).
 
E. PAUL ( Acts 22:10, 16 ).
 
CONCLUSION:
 
A. HOW DO YOU REACT?
 
B. I HOPE PERSONALLY!
 
C. WHAT IS HOLDING YOU BACK?
 
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Posted by on July 30, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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HERE WE GO AGAIN; ANSWERING ONCE AGAIN AN AGE OLD QUESTION: “WHY DOES YOUR GOD ALLOW SUCH TRAGEDY TO HAPPEN?

                      Why Does God Allow Evil?

 
 
There is no doubt that sin, and the evil that accompanies it, exists in this world. When atrocious examples of evil come to our attention, people commonly wonder why God allows such evil to happen. Atheists will use the very existence of obvious evil to argue against God. “If God were so good,” they smirk, “why is there evil in the world?” Since evil exists, these people conclude that God must not exist.
 
Have you ever thought about reversing the argument? If evil is so prevalent, why is there righteousness in the world? Since righteousness exists, should we conclude that evil does not exist? Obviously the existence of one extreme does not preclude the existence of the other extreme.
 
Yet, still the question needs to be addressed. As Christians we are to have a ready answer for every question regarding our faith (I Peter 3:15). Perhaps you have studied this question in the past, but given the tragedies of recent days, it will do each of us good to review the Scriptures so we may answer the questions that are bound to come up.
 
But, before addressing why evil is allowed to exist, we need to define what is evil. We don’t have to look far to find recent events that most people agree are evil. There is no doubt that the taking of thousands of innocent lives in Colorado, New York, Washington, D.C, and Pennsylvania is a prime example of evil at its worse.
 
In fact, we can go farther and note that evil always involves sin. The two are equivalent: Sin is evil. Some sins are much more abhorrent than others. The loss of thousands of innocent lives strikes us as more evil than an individual’s lie. Yet, we must understand that both are wrong. Both are different facets of evil.
 
John defines sin as the breaking of law (I John 3:4). The very existence and recognition of evil argue that a law or several laws are being broken. The tragedy of September 11, 2001, and Aurora, Co.was evil because innocent people were murdered. This means that we recognize the fact that murder is wrong. In other words, we acknowledge that a law exists making murder sinful. If such a law did not exist, then there could be no violation of that law (Romans 4:15).
 
Recognizing this, some have foolishly argued that here lies a quick way to remove evil from the world – remove every law! Too hard to believe? We all recognize that this nation has a drug problem. What has been touted as a solution to the drug problem? Why, legalize the drugs! As if this would solve the problem!
 
It was once against the law to have sex outside of marriage. Those laws have been dropped from the books as being unenforceable. Has the sin of fornication therefore disappeared with the removal of the law? Has it even decreased? No, the exact opposite effect has been recorded. People are living together in staggering numbers and the rate is increasing phenomenally.
 
The problem we must face is that evil still exists even when we do not acknowledge it in our laws. “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned – for until the Law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam until Moses …” (Romans 5:12-14). Notice that even before God gave the law to Moses, sin was still in the world. Yet, God did not impute the punishment for sin against mankind.
 
Consider the age-old exclaim, “I didn’t know that was illegal!” Does our ignorance of a law mean the law doesn’t exist for us? Obviously no. We are still held accountable to uphold a law even if we did not know of its existence. Yet, if we truly had no way of knowing the law, the judge might be lenient in passing sentence.
 
In a similar vein, though people sinned (broken the law) before God gave the law to Moses to record, he did not count the sins against the people who broke the law. Yet, the consequences of sin, in this case death, remained even though sin was not imputed.
 
To summarize, sin exists even when the written laws do not acknowledge a particular action as sinful. Putting on blinders to avoid seeing evil does not make the evil go away, nor does it make it any less evil. In other words, laws do not create evil.
 
Where, then, does sin originate?
 
If we come to a fork in a road, we must choose which direction we will take. Because a decision must be made, I can guarantee that everyone approaching the fork will not choose the same path. Even if I put up a sign explaining the desirability of one direction over the other, I can still guarantee that the less desirable path will still be used.
 
James 1:12-18 explains that sin comes from people making the wrong choice. Sin comes from man and not from God. We all have desires that are necessary for us to live. Satan uses these natural tendencies to put us in situations where the satisfaction of our desire would cause us to break a command of God. It is a trap, but it is a snare that we willingly walk into because we want what is offered.
 
Not only does Satan tempt us, but our fellow men, already caught up in sin, will use our desires to gain their own goals (II Peter 2:18-19). Temptation is so prevalent in this world that none are immune to sin (I Corinthians 10:12). Yet, the situation is not hopeless. God remains in control, even when we are tempted to violate God’s laws (I Corinthians 10:13).
 
Yet, if evil exists, and people will choose to do evil, why did God bother giving men a law? Paul explains that the law does not cause people to sin, but it does clarify our sins (Romans 7:7-12). The law, being from God, is holy and good. It defines for man what God sees as sin. It helps us understand the nature of sin and of evil.
 
Unfortunately, the law is also exploited by Satan. By defining sin, it lets us know about options we might not have considered before. Every parent faces this dilemma. We want to warn our children against the dangers present in this world, but we don’t want our children to lose their innocence toward life. Paul spoke of this same problem in Romans 7. He, by nature, would not be one to covet what belongs to another man. But when he learned about coveting through the law, he faced the temptation to covet from the simple fact that he was now aware of the possibility.
 
This does not excuse our decision. We have been warned in advance by the law. Hence, the law leaves us with no excuse when we violate the law.
 
Perhaps now we can address why evil continues to exist in this world. Sin exists because people want it (Jeremiah 5:30-31). God tolerates its existence because it creates a distinction between the righteous and the wicked (Romans 7:13). When we sin, and we see the affect of evil on our lives, then we learn, however reluctantly, that God was right. We are forced to see that God’s laws are actually the best path because we see the devastation caused by people who sin. The existence of sin and the existence of people willing to commit sin show us just how bad off mankind is (Ecclesiastes 3:16-18).
 
When we battle against sin, we are strengthened by the effort (James 1:12). What kind of shape would I be in if I laid in bed all day? Many of us work out in some type of physical exercise. Yet, why do we bother? Simply because we understand that exercise, even when we don’t fully enjoy it, helps us to enjoy life more fully. What kind of shape would I be in if I never exercised my faith? Even though the choices are not always enjoyable, I need the opportunity to make them so that I may be better able to serve God.
 
We must also acknowledge that evil continues to exist in this world because we refuse to recognize sin. This is the trap the Jews fell into (Romans 2:17-24). When you don’t pay a bill, are you not stealing? If you leave out some of your income at tax time, are you not lying? How can a person lead others out of sin if they wallow in sins that they feel are not so bad?
 
This was a major point in Jesus’ sermon on the mount. Murder is awful, but it is preceded by the sin of anger (Matthew 5:21-22). Adultery is evil, but it is preceded by the sin of lust (Matthew 5:27-28). We cannot make a half-hearted stand against evil. Evil will not go away if we accept some sins but reject others. This is an all-or-nothing war. Evil cannot be defeated if we allow sin to continue to exist in our own lives.
 
Where do you stand in this battle against evil? Either you are for righteousness and God or you are against him (Matthew 12:30). There is no middle ground. May God bless and use this article and message to challenge us to be more conformed to the image of Christ.
 
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Posted by on July 27, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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WHAT THE BIBLE TEACHES ABOUT THE DOCTRINE OF CONDEMNATION

                    “A BIBLICAL LOOK AT WHAT THE BIBLE  TEACHES ABOUT CONDEMNATION”

The sentence of God against sin.
Matthew 25:41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
 
Universal, caused by the offence of Adam.
Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
Romans 5:16 And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.
Romans 5:18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.
 
Inseparable consequence of sin.
Proverbs 12:2 A good man obtaineth favour of the LORD: but a man of wicked devices will he condemn.
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
 
INCREASED BY
 
Impenitence.
Matthew 11:20-24 Then began he to upbraid the cities wherein most of his mighty works were done, because they repented not: Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee. …
 
Unbelief.
John 3:18-19 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
 
Pride.
1 Timothy 3:6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.
 
Oppression.
James 5:1-5 Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days. Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth. Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter. …
 
Hypocrisy.
Matthew 23:14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
 
Conscience testifies to the justice of.
Job 9:20 If I justify myself, mine own mouth shall condemn me: if I say, I am perfect, it shall also prove me perverse.
Romans 2:1 Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.
Titus 3:11 Knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sinneth, being condemned of himself.
 
The law testifies to the justice of.
Romans 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
 
According to men’s deserts.
Matthew 12:37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.
2 Corinthians 11:15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
 
Saints are delivered from, by Christ.
John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
Romans 8:33-34 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
 
Of the wicked, an example.
2 Peter 2:7 And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:
Jude 1:7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
 
Chastisements are designed to rescue us from.
Psalms 94:12-13 Blessed is the man whom thou chastenest, O LORD, and teachest him out of thy law; That thou mayest give him rest from the days of adversity, until the pit be digged for the wicked.
1 Corinthians 11:32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.
 
Apostates ordained to.
Jude 1:4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.
 
Unbelievers remain under.
John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
 
The law is the ministration of.
2 Corinthians 3:9 For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory.
 
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Posted by on July 26, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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HOW DO I KNOW THAT I CAN TRUST THE BIBLE TO BE THE WORD OF GOD? IS THERE ANY EVIDENCE OF IT’S TRUTH?

                       “WHAT THE BIBLE TEACHES ABOUT THE NATURE OF DIVINE REVELATION”
 
 
 

Intro.

 
1. God has revealed His mind to mankind, Heb. 1:1-2.
 
a. Revelation: “laying bear, making naked…a disclosure of truth, instruction…concerning things before unknown” (Thayer), Rev. 1:1.
 
b. Making known of those things we could not know without God telling them to us, cf. Eph. 3:3 (make known the mystery).
 
2. Revelation is necessary to know the mind of God, 1 Cor. 2:7-12.
 
3. The nature of God’s revelation assures us that our faith in it as the word of God is sound, 1 Ths. 2:13.
 
 
 
I. THE NATURE OF GOD’S REVELATION.
 
A. God’s Revealed Word is Truth, Jno. 17:17 (18:38; 14:6); 16:13.
 
1. Power to sanctify the sinner; “to separate from profane things and dedicate to God” (Thayer).
 
a. Not “cunningly devised fables”, 2 Pet. 1:16.
 
b. Not the wisdom/will of men, Gal. 1:11-12.
 
2. The word of the truth of the gospel teaches heaven’s hope, Col. 1:5.
 
B. God’s Revealed Word is Verbally Inspired, 2 Pet. 1:20-21.
 
1. Holy Spirit gave the apostles words to speak, Matt. 10:16-20.
 
2. Scripture given by inspiration, 2 Tim. 3:16. (God-breathed)
 
a. “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God” (nkjv): “In this form there is a definite assertion of inspiration” (A. T. Robertson). Or…
 
b. “Every scripture inspired of God is also profitable” (asv): “…making ‘inspired of God’ descriptive of “every scripture” (Ibid).
 
3. HS combined spiritual things with spiritual words, 1 Cor. 2:12-13.
 
C. God’s Revealed Word has been Miraculously Confirmed, 1 Cor. 2:4-5; Heb. 2:3-4 (Mk. 16:17-20).
 
1. Validated, certified as genuine, Gal. 1:11-12.
 
2. Example of this confirmation, Acts 14:3.
 
3. Assures that our faith is in truth from God, not fables from men.
 
D. God’s Revealed Word is Adequate, 2 Tim. 3:16-17.
 
1. Sufficient, fully meeting our needs, 2 Pet. 1:3-4.
 
2. All truth, Jno. 16:13-15.
 
E. God’s Revealed Word is Incorruptible, Matt. 24:35.
 
1. Always reliable and relevant, 1 Pet. 1:22-25.
 
2. The truth abides with us forever, 2 Jno. 2.
 
3. Sinners fall away from truth, but truth continues, 1 Tim. 4:1.
 
F. God’s Revealed Word is Once for all Delivered, Jude 3.
 
1. hapax: “once for all”, cf. Heb. 7:27; 10:10.
 
2. That which is perfect has come, 1 Cor. 13:8-10.
 
3. Completely revealed, competently confirmed as valid and communicated by inspiration, Jas. 1:25.
 
4. No new, ongoing, yet undiscovered revelation!
 
G. God’s Revealed Word is Authoritative.
 
1. The apostolic teaching is heaven’s authority, Jno. 13:20 (Matt. 18:18).
 
2. Scripture has binding authority, Jno. 10:35.
 
3. The apostles’ teaching must not to be minimized, 1 Cor. 14:37 (7:40, have the Spirit of God).
 
H. God’s Revealed Word is Understandable.
 
1. It is God’s communication to His creatures! Eph. 3:3-4
 
2. Christ expects us to know it and abide in it, Jno. 8:31-32.
 
3. Full assurance of understanding…knowledge…in Christ are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, Col. 2:1-3.
 
 
 
II. OUR FAITH IS SECURE BECAUSE IT IS BUILT UPON GOD’S REVELATION, Rom. 10:17; 1 Ths. 2:13.
 
A. God’s Revealed Word is Powerful to Accomplish the Purposes of God, Heb. 4:12.
 
1. Power to convict of sin, Jno. 16:8; Acts 2:37.
 
2. Power to convert the heart, Rom. 6:17-18.
 
3. Power to save the soul, Rom. 1:16.
 
 
 

Conclusion

 
1. God’s revelation of truth restrains us from sin, Prov. 29:18.
 
2. God’s revelation strengthens (establishes) us in our obedience to the faith, Rom. 16:25-26.
 
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Posted by on July 25, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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LADIES AND GENTLEMEN; “THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS A PAINLESS CHRISTIANITY”

                              TEXT: GAL 2:17-21  “CRUCIFIED WITH CHRIST”

Intro.

 
1. Gal. 2:20: Although Paul did not speak literally, he described something very real in his life; Crucified with Christ.
 
2. To be crucified with Christ is essential to salvation & being His disciple.
 
 
 
I. CRUCIFIED WITH CHRIST. (“I have been crucified with Christ”)
 
A. The Symbolism of Crucifixion.
 
1. Crucifixion was death by torture; Painful (excruciating, “out of the cross”).
 
2. Paul speaks of a real death that can be excruciating as we put ourselves to death for the sake of Christ; pain involved, Phil. 3:4-8.
 
3. Some want a “painless Christianity” – That is not the Christianity of the apostle Paul.
 
B. Death with Christ (Rom. 6:8):
 
1. Death of the old man of sin, Rom. 6:2, 5-7.
 
a. No longer in bondage to sin, Rom. 6:6. Choice we make.
 
b. Of the flesh, Gal. 5:24. Rom. 13:14
 
c. To the world, Gal. 6:14; Col. 2:20.
 
2. Death of self, 2 Cor. 5:14-15 (Lk. 9:23).
 
a. Cf. Pride, Gal. 2:11-13. The fear that motivated Peter was an expression of self-preservation rather than self-sacrifice for the sake of truth.
 
b. Transgression, Gal. 2:18 (11, 14).
 
3. Death to the law, Gal. 2:14-21 (as means of justification from sin).
 
a. Self, by means of law keeping, can never free us from our sin.
 
b. This is establishing “their own righteousness,” Rom. 10:3.
 
c. Can never save; makes the death Jesus useless! (2:21)
 
C. This Death to Sin Occurs when we are Converted to Christ.
 
1. By means of baptism, Rom. 6:4.
 
2. WITH the prerequisites of belief, confession of faith & repentance.
 
3. United with Him in the likeness of His death, Rom. 6:5.
 
 
 
II. IT IS NO LONGER I WHO LIVE, cf. Rom. 6:4-5.
 
A. Justification from Sin, Rom. 6:7-8, 11.
 
1. Spiritual life out of sin’s death (Eph. 2:5); new creation, 2 Cor. 5:17.
 
2. Forgiveness of sins, Col. 2:12-13.
 
B. Christ Lives in Me.
 
1. Personal relationship & identification with Christ, Eph. 3:17.
 
a. Christ is seen in the Christian, Lk. 6:40.
 
b. Taught & trained by Christ.
 
c. Influenced by Christ, Jno. 8:31-32 (truth; Eph. 4:20-21).
 
d. Fellowship with Christ, Jno. 14:21, 23; 15:4-5.
 
2. We now live a life unto God, not unto sin, Rom. 6:9-11.
 
 
 
III. LIVING BY FAITH (“the life I now live in the flesh”).
 
A. By the Faith, We Obtain Life (the objective standard).
 
1. The gospel gives life, Gal. 2:16; Rom. 1:16-17. (By obeying the gospel, one obtains life out of the death of sin.)
 
2. Why Paul withstood every error that would corrupt it, Gal. 1:6-12; 2:5, 11.
 
3. Why we must, too!
 
B. Personal Faith in the Son of God.
 
1. The objective standard produces personal faith, Rom. 1:17 (10:17).
 
2. Active faith, 2 Cor. 5:7; Heb. 11:6.
 
3. Practical applications, Col. 3:1-3 (3:5-4:6).
 
 
 
IV. WHY BE CRUCIFIED WITH CHRIST & LIVE BY FAITH?
 
A. Because Christ Loved Me.
 
1. He acted in my best interest, 2 Cor. 8:9; Gal. 2:21.
 
2. He loved me so that I may live, 1 Jno. 4:9-10.
 
B. Because Christ Died (was Crucified) for Me, Gal. 3:1; Rom. 5:6-11; Isa. 53:4-6.
 
 
 

Conclusion

 
1. Have you been crucified with Christ? Is your old man of sin dead? Has self been abandoned for the will of Christ in your life?
 
2. If so, is Christ living in you? Is He seen in you? Is He influencing you (i.e., are you living for God & not for sin)? Are you living in & by His word?
 
3. If not, then be crucified with Christ now.
 
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Posted by on July 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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A LOOK AT ONE OF GOD’S MOST WONDERFUL TOOLS; OUR ABILITY TO REMEMBER

 
 “ONE OF LIFE’S TRUE BLESSINGS GIVEN TO US BY OUR CREATOR”
 
1. What have you forgotten today? What about yesterday? Last week?
 
2. Memory is a wonderful tool for improving ourselves; a blessing given us by our Creator. With it we learn and grow, we avoid mistakes of the past and duplicate its successes. Memory helps us treasure what is good so we can refine ourselves to be better, Deut 30:1-3.
 
3. At the start of this new day let us resolve to develop a better memory as the people of God. The gospel teaches us things Christians should always remember (never forget):
 
 
 
I. ALWAYS REMEMBER OUR CLEANSING FROM PAST SINS. 2 Pet 1:9
 
(To forget shows ingratitude and short-sightedness) (cf. Anniversary)
 
A. Remember the Price of our Redemption. Eph 1:6-7
 
1. His sacrifice and God’s great love, 1 Tim 2:6; Rom 5:6-8.
 
2. Our new life in Christ (cleansing), Rom 6:3-4; 2 Cor 5:17.
 
a. To no longer live in sin, Rom 6:1-2.
 
b. To grow and mature in Christ, 2 Pet 1:5-11.
 
 
 
II. ALWAYS REMEMBER GOD’S WORD OF TRUTH. 2 Pet 1:12-15; 3:1-2; Jude 17
 
A. The World Says: “Forget the Bible”! (“Myths, corrupt, difficult…”)
 
B. In Always Remembering God’s Word there is:
 
1. Cleansing and safety from sin, Psa 119:9-11, 15-16.
 
2. Assurance when persecution comes, Psa 119:81-88.
 
3. Life and salvation, Psa 119:92-94 (Jno 8:31-32).
 
 
 
III. ALWAYS REMEMBER TO DO GOOD AND TO SHARE. Heb 13:16
 
A. World Says get Ahead of the Next Person (cf. gas line cutter). 2 Tim 3:1-5
 
B. Christians must Remember the Good Christ has done for us and Share it with Others. Matt 25:34-40
 
1. Hospitality, Heb 13:2.
 
2. Remember that others have given us of their time, possessions, home, help – and respond in the same way, Matt 7:12; Acts 4:32-35; Gal 6:9-10.
 
3. Remember to be a giver, not a taker, Acts 20:35; Prov 11:25.
 
 
 
IV. ALWAYS REMEMBER THOSE WHO HAVE GONE BEFORE YOU. Heb 13:3
 
A. Those that Taught you and Stood for the Truth so you could know Christ. Jno 4:35-38
 
B. Those that Endured Trials, making your Endurance Easier. Heb 10:32-35 (Always remember what has brought you to this moment in your spiritual life.)
 
 
 
V. ALWAYS REMEMBER GOD’S POWER AND PROMISES. 2 Pet 3:5, 8-9
 
A. Mockers Forget God’s Powerful Judgments of the Past. 2 Pet 3:3-7
 
-As a result, they do not prepare for the future (1 Ths 5:1-6).
 
B. Some Sinners will Repent of their Sins against God when they Remember His Power and Promises. 2 Pet 3:8-9
 
1. His longsuffering should compel us to repent, Rom 2:4.
 
2. God gives us repeated chances to repent and reform; are you wisely using your time?
 
 
 
Conclusion
 
1. God will always remember your work of faith and acts of love, Heb 6:10.
 
2. But, when you repent and obey Him he will remember your sins “no more”, Heb 10:17.
 
3. So, we must remain diligent in faith, always remembering God and His eternal promises, Heb 6:11-12 (Eccl 12:1).
 
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Posted by on July 21, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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EXPLANING THE EMERGING EVERYDAY EVILS–AN EXCELLENT OVERVIEW OF WHAT HAPPENED

The horrific tragedy in Colorado has left us all speechless, shaking our heads in disbelief. How could this have happened? Could anything have been done to stop this mad man? And what can we possibly tell our children…if they ask?
 
Parents are rendered tongue-tied when it comes to talking to their kids about many different kinds of things—sex, death, God. But when it is a topic that is terrifying and may create fear where none existed previously, then we are dumbstruck, reduced to being mute. This is one of those times. How do you explain a senseless massacre in a movie theater to your vulnerable child, whether he is 8 or 18?
 
To start, unless your child has been exposed to this incident–by radio, TV, internet or overhearing your loose talk—there is absolutely no reason to bring it up to him. However, if your child comes to you exclaiming, “Did you hear what happened at the Batman movie?” your first job is to find out what he knows. Ask him to share what he heard. That way you will know what information you need to address or correct to the best of your ability. After you share the correct information, and your child asks, “Why did he do that?” you can explain something like:
 
Just like people sometimes have problems with their bodies, like a hearing impairment or a leg that doesn’t work, for example, once in a long while someone has a severe problem with his brain. The guy who did the shooting had a big problem with his brain. It didn’t work properly, and he did a horrible, crazy thing. He could not think right.
 
You may need to add for reassurance:
 
This doesn’t happen very often at all, most people’s brains work right. But once in a while someone’s mind doesn’t tell him what is and isn’t okay to do. He simply doesn’t know right from wrong, and he can’t stop himself from doing crazy things. But this is very very rare; it doesn’t happen very often at all.
 
If your older child, 10 years and older depending upon his maturity, comes to you wanting to talk about it, open up the flood gates and encourage the conversation. Ask him what he thinks might have been going on with someone who does something so horrific. Then share the same observations about mental illness, and the rarity of the act. Not only will he share the burden of his fears with you, thereby lessening his load, but you will be able to reassure him of the randomness of the act and how remote the likelihood of it happening again is. You might also discuss how the media and internet bring terrible news instantly and relentlessly. While it is an unfathomable act, having it thrown into your consciousness makes it even bigger. You can’t escape it.
 
In truth, there are no fool-proof precautions that you can teach your child when it comes to being safe at all times, including when he goes to a movie theater. Beyond knowing where the closest exit is and to leave calmly in the event of an emergency, people are sitting ducks in theaters. Is this going to stop you or your children from going to see films? I hope not.
 
If your child had planned to see the latest Batman, forbidding him from going will likely fuel his fear that a shooting like this will happen again. You need to communicate to your child that the day-to-day world in which we live is actually safe. This heinous event is not the norm, even though knowing about past events like Columbine and Virginia Tech make it seem like tragedy strikes often. This terrible massacre was a singular and highly extraordinary event
 
The hard part is that you need to believe this too. Your children will pick up on your feelings. Do your best, for them. * I found this article to be clear, precise, practical and loaded with lots of insight. Our prayers are with the families of the victims.
 
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Posted by on July 20, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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TRUST AND OBEY FOR THERE’S NO OTHER WAY TO BE HAPPY IN JESUS….

 SO WHY IS IT? WHY DO SO MANY HAVE TO LEARN THE HARD WAY?

INTRO:

 
1. God has favored man with His words of instruction: True and for our benefit.
 
2. Stubbornness of sin prevents us from learning the lessons of truth and godliness; Reverent humility will yearn for them – cf. Rom. 2:4-5.
 
 
 
I. LEARNING LESSONS THE HARD WAY – Prov. 13:15-16.
 
A. By Making Wrong Choices:
 
1. Choosing sin – (the experience of practicing sin).
 
a. Gen. 3:6 – Eve and Adam. (1 Jno. 2:15-17; 1 Cor. 7:23)
 
b. Num. 13:30-14:1 – The spies and Israel.
 
2. Choosing for the moment w/o assessing future effects (priorities).
 
a. Lot – Prosperous move, depravity of S. and G. – Gen. 13:10-13; 19:5- 9, 14, 16; 2 Pet. 2:7-8.
 
b. Work: Will it compromise my faith?
 
c. Mate: Will they help my chances of going to heaven?
 
d. Friends: Will they support me in making godly decisions?
 
B. By Repeating The Same Mistakes (Sins) Over and Over and Over.
 
-(cf. Eveready bunny: keeps going and going and going!) – Not learning!
 
1. Period of judges (Jgs. 2:11-19).
 
2. Scribes and Pharisees – Matt. 23:29-32.
 
C. By Following Feelings Instead Of Faith – Prov. 14:12; Acts 26:9.
 
 
 
II. LEARNING LESSONS THE RIGHT WAY.
 
-(Not Necessarily “easy”, but……Prov. 13:15.)
 
A. Learn From The Past – Rom. 15:4; cf. Matt. 11:20-24.
 
B. Learn From The Circumstances / Examples Of Others – Jno. 9:3; 1 Cor. 4:6
 
C. Learn By Asking Questions Of The Right People – cf. 1 Cor. 14:35.
 
D. Learn By Listening To The Word Of God – Jno. 6:45; Prov. 1:1-7 (v. 5); 4:20-5:2 (cf. Neh. 8:1-12; Jno. 8:43); Eph. 4:20-21.
 
1. By studying God’s word – Psa. 1:1-2.
 
2. Repetition – 2 Pet. 1:12-15; Phil. 3:1.
 
E. Learn By Doing – Matt. 11:29.
 
1. By obeying God’s word – Jno. 8:31-32; cf. Phil. 4:11.
 
2. By shunning evil – Prov. 1:10-15; 4:14-15.
 
F. Learn Through Discipline – Heb. 12:5-6, 11; 1 Tim. 1:20.
 
-(Instruction and correction).
 
 
 

Conclusion

 
1. A disciple is a learner and a follower. Be a disciple of Jesus.
 
2. Commit yourself to learning the lessons taught to us in the word of His grace (Tit. 2:11; Acts 20:32). Hear and obey Jesus now!
 
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Posted by on July 20, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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A LOOK AT SEVEN REASONS “WHY” WE SHOULD NEVER BE AFRAID; “WHY ARE YOU SO FEARFUL?”

                              THE BIBLE CLEARLY TEACHES US TO NOT BE AFRAID”
 
                                                      (Reasons for Encouragement)
 
 
 
Intro.
 
1. Gal. 6:9; 1 Cor. 16:13: We are to avoid discouragement and be encouraged in our faith. cf. Apostles – 2 Cor. 4:7-11.
 
2. How can we achieve such remarkable encouragement even in times of discouragement?
 
3. One answer is to develop & maintain unwavering faith in the power, presence & provisions of God in your life.
 
4. Seven “do not fears” which reveal reasons for encouragement in both our physical & spiritual lives as Christians.
 
 
 
I. DO NOT FEAR: THERE ARE BLESSINGS IN THE JOURNEY OF LIFE – Gen. 26:24; Josh. 1:8-9. {Jas. 1:17…}
 
A. Physical: God Knows & Supplies our Needs – Matt. 6:31-32; Acts 14:17.
 
1. Israel in the wilderness (water, manna, provisions, protection, guidance – Deut. 8:2-3, 4)…Proved Israel.
 
2. Our physical circumstances also “prove” (test) our faith! (Thankful or greedy? etc.)
 
B. Spiritual: In Christ Every Spiritual Need is Met – Eph. 1:3; Rom. 8:35-39. Are you relying upon Him?
 
 
 
II. DO NOT FEAR: SUPPLIES IN FAMINE – 1 Kgs. 17:4, 13-14.
 
A. Physical: God can be Trusted in Times of Need – Matt. 12:44 (Psa. 37:25; Matt. 6:11, 33).
 
B. Spiritual: Those who Hunger for Righteousness are Filled – Matt. 5:6; Isa. 44:2-4 (4:4; 2 Tim. 3:16-17). (Living water, Jno. 4:10)
 
 
 
III. DO NOT FEAR: PROTECTION IN PERIL – 2 Kgs. 6:16-17.
 
A. Physical: God’s Will is Done – Dan. 3:16-17.
 
-Time & chance happens to all – God’s people, living godly lives, are protected from much harm (cf. drugs, alcoholism, dangers).
 
B. Spiritual: God is Greater than Satan – 1 Pet. 3:14; 1 Jno. 4:4.
 
 
 
IV. DO NOT FEAR: STRENGTH IN WEAKNESS – Isa. 41:8-10.
 
A. Physical: All Physical Strength Ultimately Fails – Eccl. 12:3-7.
 
1. The help of friends – Mk. 2:2-5.
 
2. We need God’s power – 2 Cor. 12:9.
 
B. Spiritual: The Strength of Faith vs. Self – Isa. 40:29-31 (2 Cor. 12:9-10; Eph. 6:10-13.
 
 
 
V. DO NOT FEAR: COMPANIONSHIP IN TRIAL – Isa. 43:1-3, 5.
 
A. Physical: An Important Trait of Faithful Friends – Eccl. 4:7-12.
 
B. Spiritual: Not Forsaken by Our Lord – 2 Tim. 4:17.
 
1. When Joshua faced the Canaanites, the Lord was there (5:14).
 
2. When Jeremiah sank in the mire, God was there in a man who put his trust in Him – Ebed-melech (Jer. 38:12-13; 39:18).
 
3. When 3 young Hebrews were in the fiery furnace, the Lord walked with them (Dan. 3:25; cf. Isa. 43:2).
 
-Heb. 13:5-6-
 
 
 
VI. DO NOT FEAR: GOD’S OVERSHADOWING CARE – Matt. 10:30-31.
 
A. Physical: Remember God in Your Life – Jas. 4:13-17 (10:30, 31).
 
B. Spiritual: God’s Purposes Will be Achieved – Lk. 12:32 (Helper, Heb. 13:6; Judge, Matt. 10:28).
 
 
 
VII. DO NOT FEAR: LIFE BEYOND THE GRAVE – Rev. 1:17-18.
 
A. Physical: Future Bodily Resurrection – 1 Cor. 15:21-22, 42-44.
 
B. Spiritual: Eternal Life for Christians – Jno. 11:25-26; 5:28-29.
 
 
 
Conclusion
 
Develop & maintain an unwavering faith in the power, presence & provisions of God in your life. – 2 Cor. 4:16-18
 
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Posted by on July 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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