Psalms 100:4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless His name.
WE SHOULD ABOUND IN THANKSGIVING BECAUSE OF OUR FAITH.
Colossians 2:7Rooted and built up in Him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.
OUR THANKS SOMETIMES SEEMS IMPOSSIBLE.
Psalms 116:17I will offer to Thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD.
1 Timothy 2:1I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
HOW CAN WE GIVE THANKS FOR EVIL PEOPLE ? WHAT DOES IT ACCOMPLISH ?
1. IT SHOWS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TRULY SAVE AND LOST PEOPLE. PEOPLE CAN SEE THE DIFFERENCE. 2. PEOPLE CAN SEE THAT TRUE CHRISTIANS HAVE BETTER SENSE AND A BETTER GRASP ON REALITY THAN PEOPLE WHO DON’T KNOW THE LORD. 3. GOD IS SHOWING THAT EVIL PEOPLE DO EVIL THINGS.
GIVE THANKS OVER THINGS THAT PEOPLE CAN UNDERSTAND.
MANY TIMES CHRISTIANS GIVE THANKS FOR THINGS THAT OTHER TAKE FOR GRANTED. ***THE AIR WE BREATHE., ETC.
1 Corinthians 14:16Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest?
WE ARE TO PRAY A SPECIFIC WAY. THAT INCLUDES GIVING THANKS TO GOD.
Philippians 4:6Be careful [LIT.=”ANXIOUS”] for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
WHAT DO WE HAVE TO BE THANKFUL FOR WHEN WE WATCH ?
Colossians 4:2 Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;
Romans 1:21Because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
WHEN WE REALIZE THAT WE HAVE SINNED, AND WE UNDERSTAND THAT WE WILL BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE IN LIFE FOR WHAT WE DO, WE TURN TO GOD FOR FORGIVENESS. IT IS A LOGICAL AND REASONABLE THING TO DO. BUT, HOW DO WE GET TO GOD SINCE WE ARE SINFUL, AND HE CANNOT TOLERATE US IN HIS PRESENCE ? OUR ANSWER–THE ONLY ANSWER–IS JESUS.
FORGIVENESS THROUGH CHRIST IS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS THAT CAN HAPPEN TO US. WITHOUT IT, WE HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO HOPE ! BUT, JESUS DEMANDS SOMETHING FROM US— IF WE WANT TO BE FORGIVEN, WE MUST FORGIVE OTHERS. THIS SHOULD BE A WAY OF LIFE FOR THE TRUE CHRISTIAN. IT BRINGS NOT ONLY BLESSING FOR US, BUT FOR OTHERS, TOO.
1. FORGIVEN PEOPLE ARE HAPPY PEOPLE.
A. FORGIVING PEOPLE–WHO DO IT RIGHT–BECOME HAPPIER PEOPLE.
There are many accounts of such people in the Bible.
Psalm 32:1 Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.
B. THEY FORGIVE, AND THEY DON’T DWELL ON THE SINS OF OTHERS.
Readiness to forgive is an attitude which doesn’t dwell on other’s faults, but examines our own relationship with God.
Philippians 3:13Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
WHAT IS GOD SPEAKING OF HERE ? IN MOST AREAS OF SCRIPTURE, HE ADMONISHED PEOPLE TO REMEMBER THINGS. THERE ARE SOME THINGS WHICH SHOULD BE BRUSHED TO THE PAST AND LEFT THERE. MOSTLY THINGS THAT OFFENDED YOU. FORGIVE THEM AND LEAVE THEM AS FAR IN THE PAST AS POSSIBLE (IMPOSSIBLE TO FORGET SUCH THINGS, BUT YOU CAN RESOLVE THEM BY PUTTING THEM INTO THE PAST).
C. GOD IS READY TO FORGIVE.
Psalm 86:5For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.
We must be like Him, READY TO FORGIVE.
D. DON’T COLLECT IMAGINARY SINS.
One mistake teachers often make is to setup a case against any student who has misbehaved in the past. Now, most of the time, a track record is valid. We act upon their track record. BUT, what if they change ? Do we come expecting that they are going to do wrong ? Do we make them examples with warnings even before they do wrong ? This can lead to a student not responding to a teacher at all. It, in effect, is unforgiveness.
Often, people misinterpret the actions or words of someone else. But, if they are in a bad spiritual state they could quickly make the wrong conclusions, and assume that someone sinned against them.
Proverbs 18:13He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.
Matthew 25:24Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed:
HE MADE A CASE AGAINST HIS MASTER WITHOUT FACTS.
2. PEOPLE WHO DO THE FORGIVING BECOME HAPPIER.
Carrying around a grudge only makes our lives miserable.
Matthew 6:14-15For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
WE CAN BE HAPPY KNOWING THAT WE HAVE PLEASED THE LORD IN FOLLOWING HIS EXAMPLE OF FORGIVING.
3. FORGIVENESS REQUIRES MORE THAN ONE PERSON TO BECOME EFFECTIVE.
A. FORGIVENESS IS NEEDED ONLY WHEN SOMEONE COMMITS AN OFFENCE DIRECTLY TO YOU.
Some hate a brother or sister “without cause.”
Proverbs 3:30Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.
DON’T TAKE THE GRUDGES OR ANGER OF OTHERS AS YOUR OWN. “IF MY BEST FRIEND IS ANGRY WITH SOMEONE, I AM ANGRY AT THEM, TOO.” THE BIBLE SAYS THIS IS WRONG.
B. IT DEPENDS UPON TRUE REPENTANCE.
Luke 17:3Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. You have a Biblical obligation to tell him the fault face to face, not behind his back.
Matthew 18:15Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.
How can this be done, if the person you want to forgive is dead ?—Get it right with God. If it even matters to the person, and they are in Heaven, there is forgiveness.
C. IT DEPENDS ON THE WILLINGNESS OF THE OFFENDED PARTY.
—IT IS REQUIRED WHEN CONDITIONS ARE MET.
Matthew 6:15But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
Many carry around bitterness and anger from years past. Tragic ! It affects their health, their mental state, and their relationship with God. Even Christians who carry grudges areound for even as little as a couple weeks can be negatively affected.
4. GOD’S FORGIVENESS IS WHAT COUNTS THE MOST.
WHENEVER YOU SIN, YOU SIN AGAINST GOD FIRST. SIN IS A VIOLATION OF HIS LAW. WHEN WE SEEK FORGIVENESS, WE DON’T ASK THE ANGELS TO FORGIVE US. WE HAVE TO ASK THE PERSON WE HAVE SINNED AGAINST.
FORGIVENESS GETS US ON A RIGHT COURSE WITH THE PERSON WE HAVE SINNED AGAINST. BUT, SOMETIMES WE HAVE SET IN MOTION THINGS THAT WILL COMES AGAINST US, EVEN THOUGH GOD HAS FORGIVEN US.
**Like a man robbing a store. He is caught, he goes to trial, and is found guilty. While in jail, he receives a letter from the store owner. In it, the store owner says that he has forgiven the man. So what ? It doesn’t get him out of jail any more than self– forgiveness will get you out of Hell or out of a bad relationship with the Lord.
A. HIS FORGIVENESS IS REAL & LASTING.
1John 1:9If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Col 1:14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
FOR US, WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF US FORGIVING OTHERS ? PEACE, HAPPINESS, KNOWLEDGE THAT WE ARE PLEASING GOD AND MAKING ANOTHER PERSON BLESSED BY UNLOADING THAT WEIGHT FROM HIM.
MISTAKES. THEY ARE ERRORS. WHETHER INTENTIONAL OR NOT.
Mistake = 1. An error or fault resulting from defective judgment, deficient knowledge, or carelessness. 2. A misconception or misunderstanding 3. An act or judgment that is misguided or wrong
SOME CAN BE CORRECTED.
SOME CAN NEVER BE CORRECTED.
SOME CAN BE TOOLS FOR LEARNING.
SOME ARE MORE SERIOUS THAN OTHER.
THEY CAN BE FORGIVEN.
THOSE NOT FORGIVEN MUST RESULT IN THE FULL CONSEQUENCES.
IN ALL CASES, MISTAKES MUST BE ADDRESSED AND DEALT WITH PROPERLY.
1. WE MAY NOT UNDERSTAND EVERYTHING, BUT GOD TELLS US CLEARLY WHAT IS RIGHT.
A. A MISTAKE, OR ERROR IS STILL SIN, WHETHER IT IS DONE WITHOUT KNOWING IT IS SIN, OR KNOWING THAT YOU COMMITTED IT DELIBERATELY.
Old Testament WORD “ERROR”=07944 שׁל shal shal 1) error, fault, MISTAKE
2 Samuel 6:7And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote him there for his error; and there he died by the ark of God.
B. KNOW WHERE YOU ARE HEADING SPIRITUALLY. HAVE A PLAN, A PURPOSE, AND A PLACE WHERE YOU WANT TO BE SPIRITUALLY.
Joseph was wandering around a field, uncertain of where he was, and not seeing any evidence of what he was looking for.
Genesis 37:15-18And a certain man found him, and, behold, he was wandering in the field: and the man asked him, saying, What seekest thou? And he said, I seek my brethren: tell me, I pray thee, where they feed their flocks. And the man said, They are departed hence; for I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan. And Joseph went after his brethren, and found them in Dothan. And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near unto them, they conspired against him to slay him.
LATER IN LIFE JOSEPH HAD A PLAN. HE WOULD SEEK GOD’S PURPOSE FOR HIS LIFE, AND FOLLOW IT EVEN IF IT LED HIM TO PRISON, PERSECUTION, OR DEATH. HE ACTIVELY LISTENED TO GOD, GOD GAVE HIM GUIDANCE BECAUSE HE WAS WILLING TO LISTEN.
Many people have died trying to climb to the top of Mt. Everest. Most of them died when they refused to listen to the guides who knew the mountain well. They decided to disregard their advice, and strike out on a different path. The most important and faithful guide in life is not some saintly relative, but the Bible, and the Holy Spirit.
C. GOD WILL BE WITH THOSE WHO CHOOSE THE RIGHT PATH.
REGARDLESS OF WHAT THE WORLD DOES, GOD WILL GET HIS PEOPLE THROUGH THEIR ORDEALS. DANIEL WAS METICULOUSLY FOLLOWING WHAT WAS RIGHT. SOME PEOPLE ARE HAPHAZARD ABOUT DOING THINGS. NOT SO WITH DANIEL.
Daniel 6:4Then the presidents and princes sought to find occasion against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but they could find none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he was faithful, neither was there any error or fault found in him.
2. THE WORLD WILL LEAD YOU INTO THE COUNTLESS ERRORS.
A. THE WORLD HAS A PATH THAT LEADS TO DESTRUCTION.
IT CLAIMS THAT THIS ROAD IS NOT WRONG, AND THAT IS CANNOT BE STRAYING FROM RIGHT BECAUSE NO ONE CAN SET UP A STANDARD OF RIGHT OR WRONG EXCEPT THE INDIVIDUAL.
Matthew 7:13Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
B. THERE IS A LIFE STYLE OF MISTAKES AND ERRORS THAT MUST BE AVOIDED AT ALL COSTS.
James 5:20 Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.
THERE IS A WAY OF LIFE THAT IS AN ERROR. IT LEAVES GOD OUT. EXCEPT FOR WHEN A CRISIS HITS, GOD IS CAST ASIDE AS UNNECESSARY. THAT IS THE WAY OF LIFE FOR SOME.
New Testament WORD “ERROR”=4106 πλανη plane plan’-ay
WANDERING AWAY, DECEIT, FRAUD, STRAYING
EVERYONE HAS A WAY OF DETERMINING WHERE TO GO NEXT IF THEY ARE LOST OR CONFUSED. SOME FREEZE. SOME ALWAYS CONSULT SOMEONE THEY TRUST. SOME REACH FOR SOMETHING TO EASE THEIR PAIN. SOME SEARCH IN A BOOK FOR AN ANSWER. SOME GET ON THEIR KNEES AND PRAY. WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN CONFRONTED WITH THE FACT THAT YOU AREN’T GETTING ANYWHERE SPIRITUALLY ?
THE MISTAKE OF THE UNSAVED IS PART OF A LIFESTYLE WHICH DEPARTS FROM THE WAYS OF GOD. IN SOME CULTURES, A SPIRIT OF SIN TAKES OVER.
1 John 4:6We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.
THERE IS A DANGER OF BEING LED AWAY FROM THE RIGHT PATH FOR THE BELIEVER.
2 Peter 3:17Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.
GOD EXPECTS US TO BE STEADFAST IN THE RIGHT WAYS. THAT INCLUDES SERVING HIM.
1 Corinthians 15:58Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.
MANY WHO LIVE IN WORLDLY PLEASURES AND DO NOT SEEK THE PLEASURES OF GOD ARE THE TRUE WALKING DEAD TODAY.
1 Timothy 5:6 But she that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth.
Think you are secure ? You might be living a dream. For example, a man in a store parking lot got out of his car, took about 15 steps, and pressed the button to lock his car doors. The car horn blew to let him know they were locked. He questioned its safety though, so he goes back to the car, and makes sure the locks are in the downward position, indicating they were locked. They were. So, he walks away from the car assuming that it is protected safe. The problem is the car was a convertible and had the top down. Somehow he thought the car was safer since he checked on it.
Many people think they are safe because they used to attend church, used to be faithful, and when in a crisis, they pray to God. However, that does not provide eternal security. Only repenting of your sins, and putting your faith in Jesus provides for your soul to be secure and heaven-bound.
This is a common question when Believers recognize that this world has gone past the patience of the Lord, and judgment worldwide is around the corner.
WE DON’T LIVE IN HOPELESSNESS.
There is always something to do for the Lord until He comes.
He didn’t leave us on earth to watch the news and get depressed. He left us here to finish up the work He assigned to His Bride.
This week there was a record breaking 165 degree heat wave in Iran. An unknown number of people died. The government issued a mandatory 4 day heat wave holiday, where people were NOT to come to work.
In the fringes of this heat wave, in Pakistan, 600 people died. In India, over 230 died.
When will see similar things hitting where we live ? What we are seeing on earth down is simply a small amount that is leading up to God’s judgment during the Tribulation.
REVELATION 16:8-9 And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire. And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory.
(THERE WILL ALSO BE TIMES OF FREEZING COLD JUST AS DEVASTATING AS THE HEATWAVES).
What about the people who see it coming, and wonder, what can we do in the time we have left ?
WE NEED TO FINISH THE WORK GOD GAVE TO EACH OF US TO DO.
JESUS COMPARES OUR WORK TO THAT OF A PERSON BUILDING A TOWER.
Luke 14:28-30 For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish.
JESUS SET HIMSELF AS OUR EXAMPLE IN FINISHING THE WORK OF THE FATHER.
John 4:34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.
John 5:36 But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me.
PAUL WAS CONCERNED ABOUT FINISHING ALL THAT GOD ASSIGNED TO HIM.
Acts 20:24 But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.
HOW DO I KNOW WHEN I AM FINISHED ?
Answer: “When God calls you to your reward in Heaven.”
1. BE A LIGHT TO THE LOST.
A. A STRONG LIGHT IS MOST VALUABLE IN THE DARKEST HOURS, NOT AT NOONTIME.
YOU WON’T CONVERT THEIR SINFUL HEARTS TO RIGHT THINKING UNTIL YOU SEE THEIR SOUL CONVERTED TO CHRIST.).
Matthew 5:14Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
–SHOW THAT YOU KNOW THE TRUTH AND IT IS VALUABLE TO YOU. –SHOW THAT YOU HAVE A LIVING SAVIOR WHO HELPS YOU DAILY.
Luke 8:16No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but setteth it on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light. Luke 11:33No man, when he hath lighted a candle, putteth it in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that they which come in may see the light. Luke 11:35Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness.
B. THE LIGHT IS OBVIOUSLY DISTINCT FROM THE DARKNESS, YET THE TESTIMONIES OF SOME PEOPLE IS NOT SO DISTINCT FROM THE LIFE OF THE LOST.
C. BE AN ENCOURAGEMENT TO THE BRETHREN. HOW ?
–BE WITH THEM FOR WORSHIP. SHOW THAT GETTING TOGETHER IS IMPORTANT TO YOU. –SUPPORT EACH OTHER BY ENCOURAGING WORDS, AND YOUR PRAYERS.
James 5:16Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
–SUPPORT ONE ANOTHER BY WORDS THAT BRING THEM TO REALITY BEFORE GOD.
Galatians 6:1Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
–BE AN EXAMPLE THAT THEY WANT TO BECOME, TOO.
1 Timothy 4:12Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
2. BE FAITHFUL TO GOD’S PEOPLE AND HIS WORK.
A. WHEN UNDER TRIALS FAMILY IS IMPORTANT.
YOUR SPIRITUAL FAMILY SHOULD BE IMPORTANT TO YOU ! (THAT’S WHY WE ARE CALLED ‘BROTHERS AND SISTERS’).
B. WARN THOSE THAT YOU CARE ABOUT.
THE BIBLE MENTIONS TWO ROLES, THE PORTER AND THE WATCHMAN. BOTH WARN OF DANGER, BOTH ARE IMPORTANT, BUT HOW ARE THEY DIFFERENT ?
—PORTER IS THE PERSON WHO GUARDS THE GATES. —WATCHMAN IS THE PERSON WHO OBSERVES WHAT IS GOING ON OUTSIDE THE GATES.
–IT DOESN’T MATTER IF THEY WILL LISTEN, OR NOT. YOU HAVE TO DO WHAT IS RIGHT REGARDLESS OF SOMEONE ELSE’S LACK OF CONCERN.
Mark 13:34For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left His house, and gave authority to His servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch. Ezekiel 3:17Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at My mouth, and give them warning from Me. Ezekiel 33:6But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand.
3. KEEP THE LOVE FLOWING.
“CHARITY” – Literal translation “LOVE”
1 Corinthians 13:2-4 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, 1 Corinthians 13:8Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. 1 Corinthians 13:13And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity. 1 Corinthians 14:1Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy. 1 Corinthians 16:14Let all your things be done with charity. Colossians 3:14And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.
–KNOW THAT THE TEMPTATIONS ON EARTH WILL INCREASE. You need to be more solid in your commitment to the Lord. –KNOW THAT OTHERS WILL HAVE TO BE STRENGTHENED. You will benefit if you help others to be strong. –KNOW THAT MANY WILL NOT DO THEIR WORK FOR GOD, AND SOMEONE MUST PICK UP THE SLACK. Don’t be afraid to try something you may never have done before. God is able to empower you and give you strength.
Philippians 4:13I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
Matthew 17:20And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.
SOMETIMES THE PROMISES OF GOD ARE HARD TO BELIEVE.
Psalms 3:1 « A Psalm of David, when he fled from Absalom his son. » LORD, how are they increased that trouble me! many are they that rise up against me.
Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
1. FAITH IN THE LORD IS BETTER THAN WORRY.
A. IT ALL WORKS OUT FOR THE BEST IN THE LONG RUN.
Genesis 50:20 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
B. BELIEVE WHAT GOD SAYS THE FIRST TIME, AND DON’T TRY TO CHANGE IT.
WHEN GOD STANDS AGAINST PEOPLE, THEY HAD BETTER REVISE THEIR WAYS OR ELSE QUICKER JUDGMENT WILL COME.
Numbers 22:34-35 And Balaam said unto the angel of the LORD, I have sinned; for I knew not that thou stoodest in the way against me: now therefore, if it displease thee, I will get me back again. And the angel of the LORD said unto Balaam, Go with the men: but only the word that I shall speak unto thee, that thou shalt speak. So Balaam went with the princes of Balak.
C. CIRCUMSTANCES IN LIFE DO NOT MEAN THAT EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE IS AGAINST YOU.
NAOMI’S FINAL CONCLUSION WAS THAT GOD WAS AGAINST HER.
Ruth 1:13 Would ye tarry for them till they were grown? would ye stay for them from having husbands? nay, my daughters; for it grieveth me much for your sakes that the hand of the LORD is gone out against me.
2. CHRISTIANS HAVE THE SPECIAL ADVANTAGE OF GOD BEING ON THEIR SIDE.
A. WE ARE VICTORIOUS THROUGH THE POWER OF GOD.
IT MAY NOT BE EASY, AND IT USUALLY INVOLVES SOME FIGHTING ON OUR PART.
1 Samuel 17:34-36 And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock: And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him. Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God.
B. THEY HAVE THE ADVANTAGE OF PRAYER. DAVID PRAYED THAT THE ENEMY WOULD NOT WIN.
Psalms 36:11 Let not the foot of pride come against me, and let not the hand of the wicked remove me.
SOMETIMES OUR BIGGEST ENEMY IS OUR OWN UNCONTROLLED IMAGINATIONS.
3. WE HAVE TO THROW OFF THE WAYS OF THIS WORLD.
DO NOT EXPECT THE ENEMY TO WIN. WE CANNOT AFFORD TO ANTICIPATE WHAT DOES NOT EXIST.
Psalm 27:3-6 Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in His temple. For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion: in the secret of His tabernacle shall He hide me; He shall set me up upon a rock. And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in His tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD.
We can be confident that God will spare those who are faithful to Him. God spared Moses when the Egyptians, then the Jews wanted to kill him. God spared Noah when the earth was destroyed by the Flood. God spared Lot – although barely, because of Abraham’s prayers. God spared Shadrach, Meshech and Abednego in the fiery furnace. God spared Daniel when he was sentenced to the lion’s den for praying to God, even though it was against the law. God saved the Apostle Peter from the swords of Herod, and many other times as different people tried to kill him.
All these people DID eventually die, but God spared them long enough for them to fulfill the mission that HE assigned to them.
Don’t forget that God is so great, kind, loving ! BUT He is God ! And, God is Holy, and has a right to judge people who oppose Him being God.
Psalms 145:8 The LORD is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy.
1. GOD DOES NOT SPARE THOSE WILL GO ALONG WITH EVIL.
A. GOD DID NOT SPARE THE SOULS OF THE PEOPLE IN EGYPT WHO WENT ALONG WITH AN EVIL PHARAOH.
Psalm 78:43-51 How he had wrought his signs in Egypt, and his wonders in the field of Zoan: And had turned their rivers into blood; and their floods, that they could not drink. He sent divers sorts of flies among them, which devoured them; and frogs, which destroyed them. He gave also their increase unto the caterpiller, and their labour unto the locust. He destroyed their vines with hail, and their sycomore trees with frost. He gave up their cattle also to the hail, and their flocks to hot thunderbolts. He cast upon them the fierceness of his anger, wrath, and indignation, and trouble, by sending evil angels among them. He made a way to his anger; he spared not their soul from death, but gave their life over to the pestilence; And smote all the firstborn in Egypt; the chief of their strength in the tabernacles of Ham:
B. GOD DOES NOT SPARE THOSE WHO DISOBEY HIS WORD.
The early Church given a commandment to spread the Good News of Jesus to all the world. Instead, they stayed in one place to bask in the wonder of their own salvation. So, God allowed them to be persecuted for their disobedience.
Acts 11:19 Now they which were scattered abroad upon the persecution that arose about Stephen travelled as far as Phenice, and Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to none but unto the Jews only.
This chastening for a sin of omission (when you were supposed to do something and you didn’t) may not be as severe as outright judgement for deliberate sins of commission (when you knew something was wrong and did it anyway), but it comes anyway.
–PERSECUTION WILL COME AND WE NEED TO ENDURE IT. HOW ? GET ROOTS ! ROOTS DON’T MOVE AROUND. ROOTS ARE CONSISTENT. IF A ROOT IS NOT NOURISHED CONTINUALLY, IT DIES.
Mark 4:17 And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended.
2. GOD DOES NOT SPARE THOSE WHO FLAUNT THEMSELVES WITH DISRESPECT AND REBELLION BEFORE HIM.
A. GOD DID NOT SPARE THE ANGELS.
2 Peter 2:4 For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;
B. GOD DID NOT SPARE THE WORLD OF NOAH’S TIME.
2 Peter 2:5 And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;
C. GOD DOES NOT SPARE THOSE WHO KNOW THE TRUTH AND REJECT IT. HE DIDN’T SPARE ISRAEL IN HIS ANGER.
Romans 11:21 For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.
3. GOD DID NOT SPARE HIS OWN SON. HE DIED FOR US. NO ONE ELSE COULD ACCOMPLISH HIS PURPOSE.
A. GOD DID NOT SPARE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON SO THAT WE MIGHT HAVE LIFE THROUGH HIS SACRIFICE.
Romans 8:32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
Is There Any Hope For Truth to Prevail ?
For Judgment To Be Completely Right ?
For Sentencing To Be Just ?
1. QUESTIONING THE SPIRITUAL STATE OF MAN. V.1.
*DOES GOD REALLY HATE THE SINS THIS MUCH ???
DEUT. 25:16, PS. 97:10, PROV. 8:13.
A. DO THEY SPEAK RIGHTEOUSNESS ?
THEY TRY TO ESTABLISH THEIR OWN STANDARDS.
MARK 7:7, ROM. 10:3, 2 TIMOTHY 3:5, *2 KINGS 17:19.
IT ONLY COMES THROUGH FAITH IN JESUS—PHIL. 3:9,
GAL 3:6, GAL. 2:21.
B. DO THEY JUDGE UPRIGHTLY ?
2. THE CONDITION OF THEIR HEARTS SHOWN BY ACTIONS. V. 2-3
A. THEY ARE EVIL FROM THE WOMB.
YET THERE IS HOPE ! ISAIAH 48:8—JACOB (SNEAKY THIEF)
B. FROM BIRTH, THEY LIE. PSALM 31:18, PSALM 59:12, PS. 52:3.
C. THEY REJECT DIRECTION, TEACHING, CORRECTION. V 4-5
MARK 7:9, 2 TIMOTHY 3:7.
D. NOTE THAT HE BRINGS UP NOTHING GOOD WHICH THEY
HAVE DONE. WHY ? ISAIAH 64:6. ROMANS 3:10-12.
3. THEIR POISON IS A SERIOUS MENACE. V. 4-5.
A. LIKE POISON OF A SERPENT. KILLS LIVE TISSUE, SPREADS
QUICKLY. PARALYZES. TONGUES CAN DO THIS. ROM. 3:13,
PROV. 23:32—LIKE STRONG DRINK. PS. 140:2-4.
B. ONCE UNLEASHED, THEY CANNOT CONTROL IT. JAS 3:8.
C. EVEN THEIR BEST EFFORTS CANNOT SUCCEED IN
CHANGING THE NATURAL RESULTS OF THIS SERPENT.
PSALM 146:3, JER. 13:23, 2 PETER 2:22. *HOPE: 2 COR. 5:17.
4. THE FATE WHICH DAVID WANTS FOR EVIL. V.6-8
A. THERE IS NO SYMPATHY FOR THE CHOICE OF EVIL. IT IS A
DELIBERATE, CONSCIOUS CHOICE. JOSHUA 24:15.
B. BREAK THEIR TEETH. WHY ? NO LONGER CAN FEED ON
—PS.106:38—THEIR OWN CHILDREN.
—ISAIAH 59:2-8—RELIGIOUS PEOPLE WHO TURN AWAY.
C. MELT AWAY. RUN OUT COMPLETELY. PS. 112:10—BY SEEING
STRENGTH GOD GIVES TO HIS OWN PEOPLE. JOSH. 14:8.
D. BE CUT IN PIECES BY HIS OWN INSTRUMENTS.
—THE TONGUE—MATT. 12:37, MAL. 2:17.
—ACTIONS THAT BECOME SNARES—ROMANS 14:22.
E. TO BE DISSOLVED. ISAIAH 13:7, EZEKIEL 21:7, 2 SAM. 17:10.
5. THE ULTIMATE RESULTS OF EVIL AFTER JUDGMENT. V. 9-11
A. IT BRINGS THOSE WHO UPHOLD IT INTO TROUBLE.
B. IT BRINGS THE RIGHTEOUS INTO THANKFULNESS.
1. THE APPEAL FOR GOD’S MERCY. V. 1
A. ACKNOWLEDGES GUILT. PS. 51:3, JER. 14:20.
B. RECOGNIZES GOD’S WILLINGNESS TO HEAR. 2 CHRON. 20:9,
PSALM 17:6, PSALM 38:15.
C. IS MOTIVATED BY HIS SITUATION. (IS THAT WHAT IT TAKES
FOR EVERYONE EACH TIME ?) PSALM 94:18.
D. REQUIRES HUMILITY, LACK OF PRIDE. JAMES 4:6, 1 PET. 5:5.
E. BRINGS GOD’S ATTENTION TO YOU. HOSEA 5:15, JER. 3:13-14.
2. RECOGNITION OF THE REAL ACTIVITIES OF ENEMIES. V. 1
A. TO BRING BELIEVERS TO FAILURE. PS. 140:5.
B. TO SEDUCE INTO FALSE PATHS.
—FALSE RELIGIONS AND BELIEFS. 1 SAM. 12:10, REV. 2:20,
—SEDUCE INTO WAYS OF THE WORLD. PHIL. 3:18, 1 JN 2:15-17.
—SET AN EXAMPLE OF WICKED WORKS. COL. 1:21, PROV. 22:25.
—TO FEAR MAN RATHER THAN GOD. PROV. 29:25.
—TO A CRITICAL OR SCORNFUL SPIRIT. PROV. 29:8.
3. THE HOPES OF THE ENEMIES. V.2.
A. DAILY SWALLOW YOU UP. LIKE FIRE, CONSUMING; OR A WILD
BEAST DEVOURING. PSALM 57:3, REV. 12:4, 1 PETER 5:8.
>DAVID’S KNEW WHAT WOULD OCCUR. PS. 21:9, PS. 50:3.
B. INCREASE THEIR NUMBERS AGAINST ME. THEY RECRUIT AND
ARE NOT ASHAMED TO DO SO. 2 TIM. 3:13, LUKE 21:8.
C. CANNOT SURMOUNT THE MOST HIGH. DAVID APPEALS TO THE
GREATEST POWER OF ALL. THE DEMONS KNOW IT—MARK 5:7,
LUKE 8:28, ACTS 16:17.
ALL ENEMIES ARE INFERIOR TO THE LORD GOD—LUKE 10:19.
THE ENEMY OF DOUBT IS JUST AS REAL AS A PHYSICAL ENEMY.
ROMANS 14:23, JAMES 1:6.
D. ALL ENEMIES ARE INFERIOR TO THE LORD GOD—LUKE 10:19.
>THE ENEMY OF DOUBT IS JUST AS REAL AS A PHYSICAL
ENEMY. ROMANS 14:23, JAMES 1:6.
4. THE DEPENDABLE SOLUTION. V. 3
A. THE ISSUE OF A BELIEVER’S FEAR. ACKNOWLEDGES THAT HE
HAS IT PERIODICALLY. PS. 55:5, HEB. 11:23, JER. 26:21, IS. 21:4.
>IT CAN BE OVERCOME. REV. 11:6,7 (THEY KNEW WHAT WAS
AHEAD). 1 JOHN 4:18—CASTING IT OUT.
B. THE ISSUE OF DOING SOMETHING WITH OUR TRUST. V. 4.
JAMES 2:20,26. LUKE 5:23, LUKE 6:8, ACTS 3:6, PSALM 46:2.
C. KNOWLEDGE OF WHAT AN ENEMY DOES HELPS US PREPARE
AND SEEK GOD EVEN MORE. V.4-6, ISAIAH 59:19.
>THEY TWIST YOUR WORDS. JER. 14:13-14, JER. 23:30.
>THEY FOCUS THEIR THOUGHTS AGAINST YOU. MATT. 12:25,
>THEY GANG UP AGAINST YOU. LUKE 22:52-53.
>THEY SECRETLY PLOT AGAINST YOU. JOHN 7:1, ACTS 23:14-15.
5. THE AMAZING COMPASSION OF THE LORD. V. 8-9.
A. GOD REMEMBERS OUR TRIALS FOR HIM.
B. GOD HAS A TRACK RECORD OF COMING TO THE AID OF HIS
CHILDREN. PS. 28:7, PS. 37:40, 1 SAM. 7:12, 1 CHRON. 15:26,
2 CHRON. 18:31, 2 CHRON. 26:7, ROMANS 8:26.
—HE IS FAITHFUL. I PETER 4:19.
—HE IS CAPABLE OF DEFENDING US. REV. 19:11.
6. GOD ENABLES THE BELIEVER TO FACE TROUBLES. V. 10-13
A. BY PRAISING HIS WORD.
WHAT IS IT ? HEBREW 13:15.
IT BRINGS THE LORD CLOSER TO US. PS. 22:3
IT MUST ACCOMPANY OTHER THINGS WHICH GOD MAY USE.
B. BY OVERCOMING FEAR. PS. 34:4, PS. 91:5, PS. 112:7, IS. 12:2.
C. BY FULFILLING THEIR VOWS TO GOD. ACTS 18:18.
WHAT DOES A VOW DO FOR OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD ?
VOW TO KEEP ON THE WHOLE ARMOR OF GOD. EPH. 6:11-13,
VOW TO MAKE LIFE A LIVING SACRIFICE FOR CHRIST.
VOW TO COMMIT YOURSELF TO THE WORK OF GOD.
I TIM. 1:18, 2 TIM. 2:2.
1. THE QUESTION OF GOD HEARING.
A. ASKING HIM TO HEAR.
—IMPLIES THAT HE HAS TO HEAR ALREADY.
IS. 65:24, JER. 1:5. BUT, HE WANTS US TO PRAY, ANYWAY.
—DAVID WANTED GOD TO HEAR A SPECIFIC THING.
DOES GOD HEAR EVERYTHING WE BRING TO HIM ?
I SAM. 8:18, JOB 35:13, 2 COR. 12:8 (WERE ALL PAUL’S
PRAYERS IGNORED ?).
B. GETTING OVER THE ILLUSION OF ABANDONMENT.
HEB. 13:5, ISAIAH 49:7, GENESIS 28:15.
2. DEALING WITH FALSE FEELINGS.
A. THE MOURNING. PS. 38:6-8.
B. THE PHYSICAL CONSEQUENCES OF A LACK OF FAITH.
JOHN 5:6, MATT. 9:22—IT TOOK A LONG TIME IN COMING.
(THESE REQUIRE HEALING, JUST AS OTHER PHYSICAL
C. PARTIAL RESULTS POSSIBLE. MATT. 9:29.
3. THE REASONS FOR DAVID’S CONDITION. V. 3
A. THE VOICE OF THE ENEMY.
— IT RESULTS IN CONFUSION (“AM I REALLY GUILTY ?”)
B. OPPRESSION OF THE WICKED. TAKING WHAT IS NOT
THEIRS TO TAKE. EZEKIEL 22:29.
C. ACCUSATIONS BY THE ENEMY. THE ONLY WAY TO APPEAR
JUSTIFIED BEFORE PEOPLE FOR EVIL ACTIONS. JN. 18:29.
D. THE VEHEMENCE OF THE ENEMY. PS. 124:2-6, ISAIAH 7:4-6.
— DON’T BE AFRAID OF THEM. MATT. 10:28, REV. 2:10,.
—GOD IS WITH HIS PEOPLE WHO SERVE HIM. JER. 1:8, 19,
4. DAVID’S HUMAN DESIRES—LIKE OUR OWN. V.4-8.
A. TO AVOID THE FEELINGS OF FEARFULNESS. 4-5.
IS FEAR OF MEN A CONDITION ACCEPTABLE TO GOD ?
2 TIM. 1:7, HEB. 13:5-6 (LOSE SIGHT OF THE LORD’S
PRESENCE ?), IF FEAR DISPLACES FAITH, WHAT IS THE
FEARFUL PERSON’S RELATIONSHIP TO GOD ?
B. TO RUN AWAY. JONAH—JONAH 1:3,
JOHN MARK— ACTS 15:38, ELIJAH—1 KINGS 19:1-3.
C. TO GET OUT OF THE ATTACK QUICKLY. V. 8.
SOME ATTACKS REQUIRE ENDURANCE. 2 TIM. 4:5
SOME TROUBLES HELP US STAY CLOSE TO THE LORD.
2 COR. 12:9.
5. THE DEPTH OF DAVID’S HURT.
A. IT CAME FROM A FRIEND. MATT. 26:50 DO THE PEOPLE OF
GOD HAVE OPPORTUNITY TO UNDERSTAND WHAT GOD
FEELS ?) 2 TIM. 4:10.
B. IT WAS UNEXPECTED. PROV. 3:25, ATTACKS OF A
SPIRITUAL ENEMY ARE OFTEN VERY SUDDEN. LUKE 9:39.
6. THE QUICK RECOGNITION OF AN ENEMY.
A. SOMETIMES THEY ARE CONCEALED ENEMIES. JAMES 4:4,
(NOT COMMITTED) LUKE 11:23, PS. 143:3.
B. SOMETIMES THEY BECOME ENEMIES AFTER BEING
FRIENDS. MATTHEW 26:50. ACTS 20:28-31,
JOB 2:11, 19:19, 42:7.
C. WE HAVE A STEADFAST FRIEND IN THE LORD. V. 16.
DANIEL 6:26, HEBREWS 6:19, FOR US—1 COR. 15:58.
7. THE BATTLE IS THE LORD’S.
A. THE ULTIMATE DESTINY OF SUCH AN ENEMY. V. 15.
1 SAMUEL 17:47, 2 CHRON. 20:15.
B. THE CRY FOR HELP BEGINS THE WAR. V. 16.
—JUSTIFIABLE CRY. MATT. 15:25, PS. 109:26.
—NOT JUSTIFIABLE CRY. LUKE 10:40.
—CONTINUING IN PRAYER KEEPS IT GOING. V.17.
LUKE 11:5-10, COL. 4:2.
C. GOD TAKES OVER AND GIVES US PEACE. 2 COR. 1:4.
WE ARE INVOLVED, BUT NOT CRUCIAL. EXODUS 14:13-14.
D. WHY THE ENEMY IS CONFIDENT. V. 19.
NO CHANGES, NO FEAR OF GOD. JESUS’ FEELINGS
TOWARD THEM. MATT. 11:20, REV. 9:20, 16:9, 16:11.
8 THE OUTCOME SHOULD HAVE BEEN KNOWN ALREADY.
A. THE DEEDS OF THE WICKED. V. 21.
—WORDS WERE MISLEADING, DECEITFUL.
—HIS INTENT WAS TO DO HARM. PROV. 2:11-14, PS. 119:95.
(DO THEY THINK THEY PRAY ?) 1 PET. 3:12
—HOW IS THE CHRISTIAN PROTECTED ? LUKE 10:19,
EPH. 6:10 (ALL OF IT !).
—CAN GOD USE EVIL PEOPLE TO BRING CHASTENING ?
EZEKIEL 38:6. EX.—USING RUSSIA IN LAST DAYS.
B. THE FAITH OF THE BELIEVER. V. 22. ACTS 7:10, PS. 34:17.
C. THE ACTIONS OF GOD. V. 23. PS. 21:7. I SAM. 17:37.
“For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient,
deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice
and envy, hateful, and hating one another.” —Titus 3:3
1. THE EPITOME OF A FOOL DENIES GOD. V. 1.
A. THAT IS NOT THE ONLY CHARACTERISTIC OF A FOOL.
—HE ARGUES, AND HAS A FALSE CONFIDENCE. PROV. 14:16.
—HE REFUSES CORRECTION (INSISTING HE IS RIGHT ALL
ALONG, ANYWAY). PROV. 10:8, PROV. 12:15, PROV 15:5.
—HE HIDES HIS HATRED WITH LIES. PROV. 10:18.
—HE ALWAYS JUMPS TO ANOTHER PROJECT IN THE WORLD
RATHER THAN LEARN WHAT IS AT HAND. PROV. 17:24.
—HE IS PRIMARILY CONCERNED ABOUT UNDERSTANDING
HIMSELF RATHER THAN GOD. PROV. 18:2.
—HE DOES NOT OVERCOME HIS FOOLISHNESS. PROV. 26:11.
—HE OVERLOOKS THE INEVITABLE. LUKE 12:20.
—HE MOCKS AT SIN. PROV. 14:9.
B. THEY REJECT WHAT IS EASILY SEEN. V. 1. ROMANS 1:18-20.
—THEY OBSERVE, BUT REFUSE TO GET DEEPER AND
COMPREHEND WHAT THEY SEE REALLY MEANS. PS. 92:5-6.
C. THEY ARE CORRUPT IN THEIR ACTIONS. V. 1
—THEIR MINDS SPEAK THINGS THEY DON’T COMPREHEND.
JUDE 1:10, AND THIS RESULTS IN CORRUPT ACTIONS.
—THEIR ACTIONS BETRAY THEIR HEARTS. LUKE 6:43.
2. GOD’S VIEW OF THE FOOL. V. 2-3
A. THEY ARE EVALUATED BY A HOLY GOD. TITUS 1:2, HEB. 6:18.
B. THE VERDICT:
—THEY ARE GONE BACK. (LIT. “BACKSLIDDEN”) JOSH. 23:12.
—THEY ARE FILTHY. JUDE 1:8 (APOSTATES), ISAIAH 64:6.
—NONE DOES GOOD. ROMANS 3:12.
NOTE THE EMPHASIS OF SCRIPTURE: PS. 14:1,3, PS. 53:1,3.
3. DAVID’S AMAZEMENT AT THEIR THINKING. V. 4.
A. DON’T THEY KNOW ? NO EXCUSE. DEUT. 1:39. TITUS 2:11.
B. THEY HAVEN’T CALLED UPON GOD. (GETTING THROUGH).
C. THEY FEAR FOR NO GOOD REASON. ISAIAH 66:4.
D. YET, GOD HAS PROVEN HIMSELF BEFORE THEM.