These messages are typically given on Sunday morning and evening and Wednesday evening by Pastor Lawrence Richardson but also include guest speakers at Grace Baptist Church.

 

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So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.
Romans 10:17 (KJV)

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9-23-2020 Wed The Forsaken Christ

The Forsaken Christ

Isaiah 53:6-8; Matthew 27:45-50

Jesus Christ was forsaken by his own people and by his nearest friends, but the worst type of being forsaken was forsaken by his father. He died alone on the cross of Calvary.

He cries from the cross, my God, my God, why has thou forsaken me?

 

1. A cry of desertion

2. A cry of destitution

3. A cry of deprivation

4. A cry of dejection

 

To Watch (View) the Message, Click Herexx minutes

 


9-20-2020 Sunday PM He Cares For You

He Cares For You

1 Peter 5:7

Society offers criticism, coldness, and cruelty. The Savior offers cleansing, charity, and compassion. It is the character of God to care because he is conscious of our needs. Thank God he is capable of supplying our every need.

 

1. He cares for you personally

2. He cares for you providentially

3. He cares for you perpetually

 

 

 

To Watch (View) the Message, Click Here33 minutes


9-20-2020, Sunday AM, Our glorious Resurrection

Our glorious Resurrection

Job 19:25-27

Every Sunday we celebrate the Lord's resurrection. It is not just a Easter

The resurrection gives

Hope to the hopeless

Encouragement to the discouraged

Peace and joy to the bereaved

Comfort to the sick Victory to the defeated

Victory to the defeated

 

The resurrection guarantees

1. A glorious appearing. Titus 2:13

2. A glorious reunion 1 Thess. 4:17

3. A glorious joy Jude 24

4. A glorious presentation of the church Eph. 5:27

5. A glorious home. Heaven

 

To Watch (View) the Message, Click Here35 minutes

 


 

9-16-2020 Wednesday, Foundational Truths of Salvation

Foundational Truths of Salvation

1 John 5:11-13

1. The Finished Work of Christ
2. Christ Is The Almighty God
3. Obedience To Christ
4. Love For Other Christians
5. Faithful Witness Of The Holy Spitit

 

To Watch (View) the Message, Click Here37 minutes

 


9-13-2020 Sunday, AM Crisis In America

Crisis In America

Zephaniah 3:7-8

Many nations have come and gone. Usually the nations have gone from need to prosperity which lead to a moral decay.

 

*Egypt was a great nation under Joseph but there arose a pharaoh which knew not Joseph.
*Israel was a great nation but pride brought the fall.
*Babylon, Greece, Rome, Spain, the list goes on and on and now we come to USA.

 

The verses in chapter 3 of Zephaniah refer to Israel but application can be made to America

 

1. A sinful nation Vs.1
2. A disobedient nation Vs. 2a
3. A stiff-necked nation Vs. 2b
4. A self-reliant nation Vs. 2c
5. A nation which rejected God Vs. 2d
6. A political corrupt nation Vs. 3
7. A religious apostate and shameless nation. Vs. 4-5

 

To Watch (View) the Message, Click Here40 minutes


9-9-2020 Wednesday, The purpose of prayer 32 minutes

The purpose of prayer

1 Timothy 2:1



Introduction

1. In prayer we admit our insignificance

2. In prayer we admit our iniquity

3. In prayer we admit our ignorance to his wisdom.



I. Prayer is contact with God

II. Prayer is communion with God

III. Prayer is cooperation with God

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9-6-2020 pm. David, A Man After God's Own Heart 40 min

David, A Man After God's Own Heart

Acts 13; 1 Samuel 16:1-13

David's name is mentioned 1139 times in Scriptures.
God rejected Saul as king.
God selected David as king.

1. David was a content man. He was a shepherd doing what his father asked.
2. David was a controlled man. The Spirit of the Lord came upon David.
3. David was a committed man.
4. David was a courageous man. "A mighty valiant man, and a man of war."
5. David was a confident man. The Lord was with him.

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9-6-2020 am, Jesus Loved the Church 31 min

Jesus Loved The Church

Matt. 16:18

Jesus started His church during earthly ministry.
He gathered people together and taught them the scriptures.

The church is not a place of entertainment.
The church is not a place to get a quick fix like a fast food restaurant.
The church is not a rest home for the elderly.
The church is an assembly of believers to worship the Lord.

1. For the sinner, the church Is a rescue mission.
2. For the world, it is a reaching out place through missions.
3. For the saint, the church is a place fro edification and building up.
4. For the weary servant, the church is a place of refreshment.
5. For the sickly saint, the church is a place of recuperation.

 

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9-2-2020 Wed, The Defense Of Sound Doctrine. 35 Minutes

The Defense Of Sound Doctrine

Galatians 1:1-5

The book of Galatians is an apologetic book in the New Testament
as it is written to be a defense of gospel.

How to defend the truth.

1. Continue steadfastly in sound doctrine

2. Guard against false doctrine

3. Teach sound doctrine

4. Rebuke false doctrine

5. Separate from false doctrine

 

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(55B) 8-30-2020, pm. Put off the old man and put on the new, 37 Minutes

Put off the Old Man and Put On the New

Colossians 3:8-17

We are to put off (do away) the works of the flesh. Replace with the works of the Spirit.

We are to:
1. Put on "bowels (inward affection) of mercy.
2. Put on the garments of kindness v 12
3. Clothed with humbleness of mind v12
4. Clothed with meekness v 12
5. Clothed with long suffering v 12-13
6. Clothed with charity (love) v 14
7. Clothed with the peace of God v 15

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(55A ) 8-30-2020 Sunday. Perlilous Times 51 min

Last Days Prayer For The Church

2Thessalonians 2:15; 3

1. Pray for strong preaching 3:1
2. Pray for authority of Scriptures 3:1
3. Pray for protection 3:2
4. Pray fo stability of Christians 3:3
5. Pray for God's Will 3:4
6. Pray for love 3:5
7. Pray for Patience 3:5

 

 

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(54 ) 8-26-2020 Wednesday, Last Things, 24 min.

Last Things First

1Corinthians 15

Last Things—1 Corinthians 15

1. Last Witness v 8
2. Last Enemy v 26
3. Last Adam v 45-49
4. Last Trump v 52

Sunday morning

Last Days Prayer For The Church
2 Thessalonians 2:15-3:5

1. Pray for strong preaching 3:1
2. Pray for authority of Scriptures 3:1
3. Pray for protection 3:2
4. Pray fo stability of Christians 3:3
5. Pray for God's Will 3:4
6. Pray for love 3:5
7. Pray for Patience 3:
5

 

 

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(53) 8-19-2020 Wednesday Who Is That God, 33 minutes

Who is That God, Daniel 3:14-15

Nebuchadnezzar asked this question, "who is that God?" He was asking Shadrach,, Meshach and Abednego this very important question.

He had set up idols and had made a golden image of himself that everyone was to bow down to. These three young men said they would not bow to his image.

In verses 17-25 they answer his question.

1. He is an authoritative God vs. 17

2. He is an able God-able to deliver us

3. He is an assuring God

4. He is an authentic God, he's real

5. He is an abiding God, in the fire with them.

6. He is Almighty God, protected them in the fire.

7. He is an avenging God. Daniel 4

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(52B) 8-16-2020 PM 32 minutes Death In The Bible

Death In The Bible, Romans 5:12

Death is seen as a putting off of our fleshly tabernacle. The word dye is used 321 times in the Bible.
Gen. 2:17 God said they'll shall surely die if you eat that the forbidden fruit
Gen. 3:3 Even told Satan we shall die Eva told Satan we shall die.
Gen. 3:4 Satan says you shall not surely die.
Gen. 4:8 death came to Adam and Eve's home. Cain killed Abel.
Gen. 6:17 God says everything shall die.

1. The death of the redeemed
2. The destiny of the redeemed
3. The delights of the redeemed
4. The danger of the deceived

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(52A) 8-16-2020 AM Here I Am 34 minutes

Here I Am, Genesis 22:1

1. Availability means I am interested

A personal word to Abraham

2. Availability means I am willing

A private word from Abraham

3. Availability means I trust God

Demonstrates the personal faith of Abraham.

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(51) 8-12-2020, Wednesday Service, Contemp From Enemies, 32 min

Contempt From Enemies


Nehemiah 4:1-6

This chapter and the next few chapters detail the great opposition that was experienced in the rebuilding of the city of Jerusalem.

1. The Presence of contempt.
2. The propagating of the contempt
3. The prayer
4. The performance of Nehemiah.

While the enemies scoff, Nehemiah prays and continues to work

Nehemiah 4:1-6 (KJV)

1 But it came to pass, that when Sanballat heard that we builded the wall, he was wroth, and took great indignation, and mocked the Jews.
2 And he spake before his brethren and the army of Samaria, and said, What do these feeble Jews? will they fortify themselves? will they sacrifice? will they make an end in a day? will they revive the stones out of the heaps of the rubbish which are burned?
3 Now Tobiah the Ammonite was by him, and he said, Even that which they build, if a fox go up, he shall even break down their stone wall.
4 Hear, O our God; for we are despised: and turn their reproach upon their own head, and give them for a prey in the land of captivity:
5 And cover not their iniquity, and let not their sin be blotted out from before thee: for they have provoked thee to anger before the builders.
6 So built we the wall; and all the wall was joined together unto the half thereof: for the people had a mind to work.

 

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(50B) What Is The Devil Doing Now

What is The Devil Doing Now


1 Peter 5:8.  Eph. 6:11

1.  He defames by accusation
2.  He disturbs and distresses
3.  He divides the brethren
4.  He distorts the character of God
5.  He Deceives the nations
6.  He devalues the gospel
7.  He darkens the eyes to truth 

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(50A) 8-9-2020 LR sermon MORNING

Survival In The Last Days


Galatians 1:1-5

Introduction
1. Living in evil times
2. Wickedness of Noah's Day
3. Perversion of Lot's Day
4. Prediction of Timothy's Day
5. Apathy of Laodicea's Day

Evil Days
1. Evil direction
2. Evil god - god of this world
3. Evil Spirit
4. Evil mind

How do we survive?
1. Be Delighted in God
2. Be Dedicated to God
3. Be Directed by God
4. Be Diligent for God
5. Be Dependent upon God

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(49B) 8-2-2020, Sunday, PM

God Our Companion


Psalms 139:1-18

 

1. Songs of the discouraged
2. Songs of the decimated or distraught
3. Songs of the down
4. Songs from the dungeon
5. Songs of daily life

1. He is our close companion

 

A. His life in us

B. His love for us

2. He is our comforting companion

 

A. When shadows come

B. When storms come

C. When separation comes

3. He is our constant companion

 

A. Never leaves one of His sheep

B. Never loses one of His sheep

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(49A) 8-2-2020, Sunday, AM

SATAN'S DEVICES


2 Corinthians 2:11

1. National darkness
2. Political disturbances
3. Religious delusions
4. Economic depression
5. Unstoppable diseases

Conclusion:


Psa 62:5 My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him.

Psa 62:6 He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defence; I shall not be moved.

Psa 62:7 In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God.

Psa 62:8 Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us.

 

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#ADB96E;


(48) 7-29-2020, Wednesday Evening, How Shall We Sing the Lord's Song In a Strange Land?

How Shall We Sing the Lord's Song In a Strange Land"

Ephesians 5:1

1. Songs of the discouraged
2. Songs of the decimated or distraught
3. Songs of the down
4. Songs from the dungeon
5. Songs of daily life

The Songs of Those That Are Discouraged: Jeramiah 20:1-3

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7) How Needs Are Met In Troubled Times, 30 Minutes

How Needs Are Meet In Troublous Times

Philippians 4:10-19

1. We Need Confidence

2. We Need Contentment

3. We Need Co-operation

4. We Need Courage

5. We Need Commitment

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(46B) 7-19-2020 Sunday Evening Service

His Presence

Hebs. 13:5—-Matt. 28:20

One of the great treasures we have is the presence of God in our lives.

All through the scripture the Lord has told His children He would be there for them.

In The Old Testament God told Moses He would be there for him. In the New Testament Jesus tell us He will be there for us.

  1. His Presence Brings Instruction
  2. His Presence Brings Comfort
  3. His Presence Brings Worship (Joy)
  4. His Presence Brings Power To The Church

 

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(36A) 6-14-2020 am Sunday Morning Service, 40 minutes

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America in the Shadow of Israel


Psalms 95:7-11
Deuteronomy 32
Isaiah 59

1. No Walk
2. No Faith
3. No Hearing 
4. No Peace
5. No Justice
6. No Light
7. No Truth—fallen in the street 

 


 

(35) 6-10-2020 Wed. Evening Service. 28 minutes

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The Just Shall Live by Faith

by Bro. Lawrence Richardson

Romans 1: 16-17

 

THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH


Romans 1:17
Galatians 3:11 
Hebrews 10:38 — 11:3

1.  A believing faith. Heb. 11:1-3
     These verses give us the description     of faith
     A.  Faith Enables us to understand what God does.
     B. Faith enables us to see what others cannot see.
     C. The best way for us to grow in faith is to read about the faithful.

2.  A doing faith   Hebrews 11:4-40
     A.  Able - witnessing- testimony
     B.  Enoch - walking
     C.  Noah - working
     D.  Abraham - waiting
     E.  Jacob - worshipping
     F.  Joseph - winning


 

 

His Gospel and its Righteousness

Romans 1:16-17 (KJV)
16  For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
17  For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.


 

Galatians 3:11

Those Who Believe Are Justified

Galatians 3:11 (KJV)
11  But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.

Hebrews 10:38Faith Pleases God. We Must Hold Fast to Faith

Hebrews 10:38 (KJV)
38  Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. l.

Romans 10:17 (KJV)
comethby hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

 


(34B) 6-7-2020 PM Sunday Evening Service - 36 minutes

HAVE FAITH IN THE FUTURE

1 Peter 1:1-16

 

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1 Peter 1:1-16 (KJV)
1  Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,


2  Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.


3  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,


4  To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,


5  Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.


6  Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:


7  That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:


8  Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:


9  Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.


10  Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:


11  Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.


12  Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.


13  Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;


14  As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:


15  But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;


16  Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

 

Peter sent the churches a letter encouraging them to remain faithful. 

God is able to use bad times to make us a better people. 

God gives grace in times of trouble. 

1.  We are strangers in a foreign land.         
     Vs. 1

2.  We are the chosen of God.  Vs. 2

3.  We have a living hope Vs. 3-4

4.  We have a guaranteed reservation
      Vs. 4c-8

5.  Our response to this salvation 
      Vs. 13-16 

 

 


(34A) 6-7-2020 AM. Sunday Morning Service

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Is God Withdrawing Himself From Us?

Hosea Chapter 5: 1-6

God's judgements on the priests,

the people, and the princes,

of Israel for their manifold sins

 

1. A real and solemn possibility

    A . Their attitude betrayed them

    B.  Their actions betrayed them

2.  The reason for God’s withdrawal

    A.  They had become a snare

    B.  They became self-willed

    C.  They became self-corrupted

3.  The Result of God’s withdrawal

    A.  They had a pretense of fellowship

    B.  They walk the path of folly. Vs. 11

    C.  They sought prescription in wrong
          place. Vs. 13

Jeremiah 18:12. And they said, there is no hope,
but we will walk after our own devices, and we will
everyone do the imagination of his evil heart. 

Hosea 5:1-6 (KJV)
1  Hear ye this, O priests; and hearken, ye house of Israel; and give ye ear, O house of the king; for judgment is toward you, because ye have been a snare on Mizpah, and a net spread upon Tabor.


2  And the revolters are profound to make slaughter, though I have been a rebuker of them all.


3  I know Ephraim, and Israel is not hid from me: for now, O Ephraim, thou committest whoredom, and Israel is defiled.


4  They will not frame their doings to turn unto their God: for the spirit of whoredoms is in the midst of them, and they have not known the LORD.


5  And the pride of Israel doth testify to his face: therefore shall Israel and Ephraim fall in their iniquity; Judah also shall fall with them.


6  They shall go with their flocks and with their herds to seek the LORD; but they shall not find him; he hath withdrawn himself from them.

 

COMMENTARY by J. Vernon McGee,

Through The Bible Series

Chapter 5

THEME: Israel turns from God and God turns from Israel

This chapter continues to deal with the sin of the northern kingdom and the fact that judgment is coming upon them; therefore it is not a very happy or pleasant section of the Word of God.

We must keep in mind the personal background of the prophet Hosea. As a young man, he fell in love with a very lovely, beautiful young lady who became a prostitute. I imagine that she was attracted to prostitution by the money, by the fact that she would be able to get the luxuries that she otherwise could not have had. God sent Hosea to marry her in spite of this. He loved her and married her. After she had borne three children, again she played the harlot. And again Hosea went after her -- he bought her and brought her back to himself. Hosea had a broken heart and a broken home. With that background, he said to the northern kingdom of Israel, "God says that you are playing the harlot, that you have been unfaithful to Him. I know exactly how He feels. He loves you and will never let you go, but He is going to judge you because of your sin."

Israel Turns From God And God Turns From Israel (5:1-15)

God begins by condemning the leadership in the nation -- the priests and the king.

Hear ye this, O priests; and hearken, ye house of Israel; and give ye ear, O house of the king; for judgment is toward you, because ye have been a snare on Mizpah, and a net spread upon Tabor [Hos. 5:1].

"Mizpah" was in the southwest section of the kingdom, and "Tabor" is Mount Tabor which was way up in the northeast section of the kingdom. In other words, the people were worshiping idols under every green tree they could find -- there were idols all over the land.

He speaks to the priests and to the king as representing the leadership of the nation. We saw in chapter 4 that God said, "Like people, like priest." The priests who should have been setting an example were unable to rise above the level of the lowest man in society; that was true of the king also.

Unfortunately, we are living in a day in which our spiritual and political leadership is certainly not worthy of emulation. Liberalism is predominant in theology; liberalism is predominant in politics; and our news media are altogether liberal. Spiritual deterioration and decline in a nation will eventually bring it to destruction. That is what happened to Israel, and that nation furnishes a pattern for what can happen to us today.

And the revolters are profound to make slaughter, though I have been a rebuker of them all [Hos. 5:2].

God rebuked Israel for their brutality -- there was murder, there was violence, and there was warfare. It is my conviction that the United States is today feeling the effects of God's judgment upon us. In Vietnam we fought perhaps the most disgraceful war that was ever fought, and we did so against the warnings of generals who said that we should never fight a land war in Asia. We made a terrible blunder by getting involved in that, and what has happened in that land is tragic. Did we help them? I think not, and the judgment of God is upon us and, actually, upon the white man. This has been called "the white man's day," and it certainly has been that. Earlier in history it was the sons of Ham who headed up the great pagan civilizations of Egypt, Babylon, and Assyria. However, it is the sons of Japheth, the white man, who has made the greatest blunder of all, and that is this: We have had the Word of God, the Bible, and we have not sent missionaries as we should have done. We did too little in getting the Word of God out to China, and God closed the door -- I say God, not communism, closed the door. We did not send Bibles to Vietnam; we sent bullets and bombs over there. Because we did not send men to give out the Word of God, we had to send boys to die on the battlefield. We ought to wake up today to the fact that we cannot take God to the end of His universe and dismiss Him and tell Him we do not need Him anymore. We are feeling the effects of His judgment upon us, just as Israel did.

I know Ephraim, and Israel is not hid from me: for now, O Ephraim, thou committest whoredom, and Israel is defiled.

They will not frame their doings to turn unto their God: for the spirit of whoredoms is in the midst of them, and they have not known the Lord [Hos. 5:3-4].

I have said previously that I think "Ephraim" is a pet name that God chose for the nation Israel. Although it was the name of just one of the tribes, He used it to represent all ten of the northern tribes. But I think there is a second reason that God chose Ephraim to represent all of the northern kingdom: Ephraim was the very center of idolatry in Israel. The first golden calf was set up by Jeroboam in Bethel; later on, a second one was set up in Samaria. Both of these places were in the tribe of Ephraim -- Bethel was probably in the tribe of Benjamin, but that area revolted with Ephraim and the rest of the northern kingdom. Ephraim was the very heart of idolatry, and idolatry was the great sin of the nation Israel.

"I know Ephraim, and Israel is not hid from me: for now, O Ephraim, thou committest whoredom, and Israel is defiled." God knows what He is talking about. Although the calf worship, or the worship of Baal, had been set up in the tribe of Ephraim, it had defiled all ten of the tribes and even had had its effect upon the southern kingdom. Their sin was the sin of a people who had the Word of God and who knew God but had turned from Him and no longer knew Him or worshiped Him. As a result, gross immorality and deterioration set in throughout every part of the nation, affecting even the ecology of the nation. God said that even the land and the animals were affected, and I think the curse of God is still upon that land today. What little irrigation has been done has not yet made the "...desert... blossom as the rose" (Isa. 35:1).

And the pride of Israel doth testify to his face: therefore shall Israel and Ephraim fall in their iniquity; Judah also shall fall with them [Hos. 5:5].

God is saying that all ten tribes will be conquered, and "Judah also shall fall with them," but He does not say, "at the same time." However, Judah was finally brought down, and both of these kingdoms were carried away into captivity. The northern kingdom was carried into captivity by Assyria; about a century later, the southern kingdom was taken to Babylon. From that captivity there has never actually been the return to the land which the Word of God speaks about. This Book of Hosea makes it abundantly clear that when God brings them back, the world will know it, and there will be peace in the land.

They shall go with their flocks and with their herds to seek the Lord; but they shall not find him; he hath withdrawn himself from them [Hos. 5:6].

In other words, the people have deserted God, but when trouble comes upon them and after they have tried every other resource, they will turn to God. God is their last resource, but they will not find Him because He has withdrawn Himself from them.

For many people, turning to God is the last resort. There is told the story of a ship which was crossing the Atlantic years ago, and the ship hit an iceberg. The captain sent out the order all over the ship. "To prayers, to prayers!" One woman on board the ship came rushing up to the captain and said, "Captain, has it come to this?" She was implying that if they were going to pray, they had come to the last resort. That is the way many people treat God. To them He is like a spare tire which they have on hand but are always hoping they won't have to use. Or He is like a life insurance policy or a fire extinguisher -- you hope you never have to use them but they are there just in case the emergency arises.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.


(33) 6-3-2020 Wednesday Service

Elijah, The Power of Prayer

James 5:17 & 1Kings 18

 

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6-3-20 Wednesday outline


1.  The perception of Elijah‘s prayer
2.  The purpose of Elijah’s prayer
3.  The power of Elijah’s prayer
4.  The proposition of Elijah‘s prayer
5.  The product of Elijah’s prayer—fire fell and rain came. 

James 5:17 (KJV)
17  Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.

"The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." James was a great man of prayer. He was called "Old Camel Knees" because, having spent so much time on his knees in prayer, his knees were calloused. He speaks now of another great man of prayer, Elijah (Elias is the Greek form of Elijah) --

Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.

And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit [James 5:17-18].

Can you imagine that? Elijah was a weatherman for three and a half years, and for three and a half years he held back the rain! It did not come until he prayed. You are the same kind of person Elijah was. Elijah wasn't a superman; he was "a man subject to like passions as we are." But he was a man who prayed with passion, and that is the kind of praying we need today.

Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him;

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 [James 5:19-20].

"Converteth the sinner from the error of his way." Some expositors believe that this refers to a child of God who has gone astray. However, I believe it refers to an unsaved person who has not yet come to the truth.

"Shall hide a multitude of sins." When he comes to a saving knowledge of Christ, his sins -- though they be multitudinous -- will be covered by the blood of Christ. The wonder of justifcation by faith is that once God has pardoned our sins, they are gone forever -- removed from us as far as the east is from the west.

This is a wonderful conclusion for this very practical Epistle of James.


Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

 

1 Kings 18:1-46 (KJV)
1  And it came to pass after many days, that the word of the LORD came to Elijah in the third year, saying, Go, shew thyself unto Ahab; and I will send rain upon the earth.
2  And Elijah went to shew himself unto Ahab. And there was a sore famine in Samaria.
3  And Ahab called Obadiah, which was the governor of his house. (Now Obadiah feared the LORD greatly:
4  For it was so, when Jezebel cut off the prophets of the LORD, that Obadiah took an hundred prophets, and hid them by fifty in a cave, and fed them with bread and water.)
5  And Ahab said unto Obadiah, Go into the land, unto all fountains of water, and unto all brooks: peradventure we may find grass to save the horses and mules alive, that we lose not all the beasts.
6  So they divided the land between them to pass throughout it: Ahab went one way by himself, and Obadiah went another way by himself.
7  And as Obadiah was in the way, behold, Elijah met him: and he knew him, and fell on his face, and said, Art thou that my lord Elijah?
8  And he answered him, I am: go, tell thy lord, Behold, Elijah is here.
9  And he said, What have I sinned, that thou wouldest deliver thy servant into the hand of Ahab, to slay me?
10  As the LORD thy God liveth, there is no nation or kingdom, whither my lord hath not sent to seek thee: and when they said, He is not there; he took an oath of the kingdom and nation, that they found thee not.
11  And now thou sayest, Go, tell thy lord, Behold, Elijah is here.
12  And it shall come to pass, as soon as I am gone from thee, that the Spirit of the LORD shall carry thee whither I know not; and so when I come and tell Ahab, and he cannot find thee, he shall slay me: but I thy servant fear the LORD from my youth.
13  Was it not told my lord what I did when Jezebel slew the prophets of the LORD, how I hid an hundred men of the LORD'S prophets by fifty in a cave, and fed them with bread and water?
14  And now thou sayest, Go, tell thy lord, Behold, Elijah is here: and he shall slay me.
15  And Elijah said, As the LORD of hosts liveth, before whom I stand, I will surely shew myself unto him to day.
16  So Obadiah went to meet Ahab, and told him: and Ahab went to meet Elijah.
17  And it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel?
18  And he answered, I have not troubled Israel; but thou, and thy father's house, in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the LORD, and thou hast followed Baalim.
19  Now therefore send, and gather to me all Israel unto mount Carmel, and the prophets of Baal four hundred and fifty, and the prophets of the groves four hundred, which eat at Jezebel's table.
20  So Ahab sent unto all the children of Israel, and gathered the prophets together unto mount Carmel.
21  And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.
22  Then said Elijah unto the people, I, even I only, remain a prophet of the LORD; but Baal's prophets are four hundred and fifty men.
23  Let them therefore give us two bullocks; and let them choose one bullock for themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under: and I will dress the other bullock, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under:
24  And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the LORD: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken.
25  And Elijah said unto the prophets of Baal, Choose you one bullock for yourselves, and dress it first; for ye are many; and call on the name of your gods, but put no fire under.
26  And they took the bullock which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped upon the altar which was made.
27  And it came to pass at noon, that Elijah mocked them, and said, Cry aloud: for he is a god; either he is talking, or he is pursuing, or he is in a journey, or peradventure he sleepeth, and must be awaked.
28  And they cried aloud, and cut themselves after their manner with knives and lancets, till the blood gushed out upon them.
29  And it came to pass, when midday was past, and they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any that regarded.
30  And Elijah said unto all the people, Come near unto me. And all the people came near unto him. And he repaired the altar of the LORD that was broken down.
31  And Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, unto whom the word of the LORD came, saying, Israel shall be thy name:
32  And with the stones he built an altar in the name of the LORD: and he made a trench about the altar, as great as would contain two measures of seed.
33  And he put the wood in order, and cut the bullock in pieces, and laid him on the wood, and said, Fill four barrels with water, and pour it on the burnt sacrifice, and on the wood.
34  And he said, Do it the second time. And they did it the second time. And he said, Do it the third time. And they did it the third time.
35  And the water ran round about the altar; and he filled the trench also with water.
36  And it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word.
37  Hear me, O LORD, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the LORD God, and that thou hast turned their heart back again.
38  Then the fire of the LORD fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.
39  And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The LORD, he is the God; the LORD, he is the God.
40  And Elijah said unto them, Take the prophets of Baal; let not one of them escape. And they took them: and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and slew them there.
41  And Elijah said unto Ahab, Get thee up, eat and drink; for there is a sound of abundance of rain.
42  So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he cast himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees,
43  And said to his servant, Go up now, look toward the sea. And he went up, and looked, and said, There is nothing. And he said, Go again seven times.
44  And it came to pass at the seventh time, that he said, Behold, there ariseth a little cloud out of the sea, like a man's hand. And he said, Go up, say unto Ahab, Prepare thy chariot, and get thee down, that the rain stop thee not.
45  And it came to pass in the mean while, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. And Ahab rode, and went to Jezreel.
46  And the hand of the LORD was on Elijah; and he girded up his loins, and ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel.

 

Note: This is a computer generated transcript using Nuance Dragon V15 and then editing from the audio.  It is now partially edited as time allows.


 

6-3-2020 Wednesday Evening Message by Bro. Lawrence Richardson

Well good afternoon to each of you.  We appreciate you being here tonight with our Facebook broadcast and trying to get the gospel out and tell people about the Lord Jesus Christ. I appreciate those that listen each time that we do these Facebook services and many of you make comments and then I get private messages. I thank you for that and appreciate people listening and praying for us here at Grace Baptist Church and that God would continue to bless and help us in these days in which we live.

We are certainly living in troublesome times, terrible times. But we have a Lord in heaven that knows all about that. He takes care of our needs and he helps us in every situation of life. 

I am coming to you today in a little bit different time.  I'm not home here this this Wednesday. We had to go to my daughters and she had a procedure today and so we're taking care to broadcast ahead of time. And so we thank you Lord for the opportunity to do this and thank God that everything works out well and always works out for the good of those that love the Lord. Pray for my daughter. She has kidney failure.  She's on dialysis and had to have a procedure today. I wanted to check to make sure everything was working well and that we would be praying for her that she might get a kidney transplant very soon and get off the dialysis and get back to a normal life that she had before.

There was no known reason for the kidney failure.  The doctors cannot tell her anything as to why. But her kidneys are not functioning hardly at all, both of them. And so she's on dialysis twice a week and we are just praying that the Lord would supply that kidney very soon and we know that He will do it in accordance to His Will and in his time.  But would you pray with us about that and we certainly would appreciate your prayers and thank you.

Here on this Wednesday we always try to try to have prayer time and ask the Lord to bless and help and remembering those that are sick and those that have needs in their life.  S lets bow for prayer and then will have a message tonight.  I pray that it will be an encouragement to you and help to you in your personal life.

Our Fathe, we bow to You and we thank You tonight for your blessings upon us.  We thank you for the good things you do for us.  We thank you for everything that you do is good and the Lord you make no mistakes and we know that we realize that and we learn to trust you and we follow your direction and your will and our personal life.  Do pray for those that are sick. We pray for the needs that people have, physically, spiritually, socially, even financially; we ask God be with them.  Pray for our country.  Dear Lord we need a move of the Lord we need a moving of God.  We need a great awakening in the lives of people that know you not.  And we need revival in the people of God. Revival us again O Lord, will be our crying and be our call.  So Lord do bless tonight as we open the Word of God and take the Scripture.  I pray been encouragement and help to everyone that that listens to this service.  Thank you for your blessings; we ask in Jesus name, Amen. 

Last Wednesday night we dealt with the subject of prayer and looked at four or five different types of prayer that we have for our self.  We use the passage in Scripture in the Book of James chapter 5. I will go back to that passage tonight and then we will turn back into the Old Testament at 1st. Samuel and go to a look here again in verse number 16, the latter part of it and verse 17 and 18 and the same verses we used the last Wednesday night. But we will look at them a little differently tonight as we open the Scripture. 

So James chapter 5 and verse number 16.  The last part of that verse says

James 5:16 (KJV)
16  The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

Elijah was a man subject to like passions as we and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain and it rained not on the earth by space of three years and six months and he prayed again, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit. 

Here is this subject once again of prayer and that the illustration or the example that God gives to us is the man by the name of Elijah. We find many things in the Old Testament about Elijah and a great man of God had the power of God upon him and followed the direction of the Lord in his life and God blessed them abundantly and used him to show it to prove that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was the true and living God, and he showed proof of that even to the heathen of his day and his time.  I believe we can do the same thing. I believe we can show forth how God is our leader how God takes care of us’ how God provides for us; how God even fights our battles.  Thank you Lord He can do that and does that for us.

So we'll turn back now to the book of first Kings chapter number 17 in chapter number 18 and have the account of this man Elijah that had some tremendous happenings in his life. Wasn’t all of them easy, but they were all good for him and good to him from the power and presence and the will of God in his life.

I want us to notice the subject that we read of the verses that we read there in James chapter 5 says, “Elijah prayed and it rained not. Heprayed again and it rained. And so here we find a man that had the power of prayer in his life that God answered and God did for him and God blessed him with the answer of prayer in his life.  Elijah prayed and it rained not. That's found in chapter 17 verse number one.  Later on it says,  “Elijah prayed in the fire fell.  You know the story how that Elijah was in confrontation with the prophets of bail and will read that prayer in a moment. When he prayed the fire of God fell and consumed the offering that was placed there and then in chapter 18 verse number 42 just soon after that fire fell, Elijah prayed and then it rained.

And so tonight I want to look at this man, Elijah, and his power that he had through prayer and the power that God gave him and the answer that God gave him through his prayer life.  He prayed for a revolution. Je said,
Dear Lord, we need this from God.  He wasn't praying for revival.  He was praying for God to deliver, for God to have a revolution in his homeland and his people that they would no longer follow after Bail no longer follow after the wickedness of their day.  Ahab I was a was one of the kings of Israel and the Bible says he is one of most wicked of all the kings that ever served as King of Israel, and he did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger than any other.  And here's the man that came in confrontation with Elijah. 

The Bible tells us in first Kings chapter 18 and verse number 17 says “ …it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said to him art thou he that troubled Israel. So here is the king,  this wicked king.  He sees Elijah and the first thing he says are you the one that's troubling Israel?  You see, Israel was in dire straits.  They were in the midst of the famine and had no food had no water because Elijah prayed and it rained not. So they were under the result of the judgment of God upon them, and when this political leader Ahab the King of Israel saw Elijah, he said, “…are you the one that's troubling Israel?” You will notice the answer that Elijah gives back to him.  He says in verse number 18 Elijah answers “…I have not troubled Israel that thou and thy father's house in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the Lord and thou has followed Balum.” Now therefore, he gives them direction what to do. 

So here's the king, and he accuses the man of God to be the problem.

You know, we live in a world today, sometimes people, they blame the Christians for the problems. They blame people that try to live right and try to live holy all of a sudden we’re the ones making trouble we’re the ones with the problems that we’re the troublemakers.  That's exactly the way Elijah was spoken to.  That's why Ahab met Elijah and said “…are you the one that's troubling Israel?”  Elijah didmn’t back down one bit and he said “…it's not me that's troubling Israel, but it's you and your father's house for you have, … the Scripture says you have forsaken the commandments of the Lord and have followed Balum.”

So here we find that Israel was resisting the word of God. They had deserted the way of God and that they was neglecting the work of God, and Idrael was far away from the Lord and God put a man by the name of Elijah in front of them and he came out preaching and came out presenting to them the judgment of the Lord upon them if they did not turn to the Lord.  And so, when Ahab meets him, Ahab says, “… you're the one you’re the one that's troubling Israel.” And Elijah's says, “…it’s not me but you.” What a strong countenance Elijah must've had to stand before that the powers that there before him.  The King of all of Israel and he said, “… you're the one that is troubling Israel because you've departed, you’ve gone away from the commandments of God, you followed after Bale, you're falling after false gods and your the problem.”

So here we find that Elijah has to come to face face with this wicked king.  And that brings him to the point of realizing that it's not me, but it's you and course Elijah is in trouble for that.  And we know the story and later on they have the confrontation between the prophets of Bale and Elijah. And he prays a very simple prayer and first Kings chapter number 18 and verse number 36 “…it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near and said,  here's his prayer very short, very simple, very to the point, but thank God the Lord answered he said “…Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel.  Let it be know this day that thou art God in Israel and I am thy servant and I have done all of these things at thy word. Hear me oh Lord, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the Lord God and that thou hast turned their heart back again. In the very next verse says then “…the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt offering.”

Here we have the man of God, Elijah, standing before the prophets of Bale.  Of course the subject matter whatsoever answers by fire, whichever god answers by fire is the God that we are going to serve. And I said, “…if it be if it be Bale you will serve Bale and if it be God will serve God.”  And so they had gone through their ritual and their whole day of cutting themselves and crying out to Bale.  And of course there was no answer. You are not going to get an answer from an idol, you’re not going to get an answer from a false god.  You’re not going to get an answer from a rock, you're not going to get an answer from an animal, you only go to get an answer from the God of heaven. 

Elijah brings them to the point and says, “…one of us is going to come across here today, one of us is going to be the winner.”  I think Elijah realized he knew the power of God, and he understood that God was going to answer his prayer.

All of us tonight, I'm sure we can go back in our life and remember times that God has answered our prayers, that God has done something special for us.  I'm not talking about prayer that everybody is praying about that, but rather a very personal prayer of our own life.  Nobody else maybe knows anything about it except God and God answers our prayer. It’s a wonderful things to know that God answers, God hears my prayer.  It's a wonderful thing to know that God will hear and answer your prayer.

And so we find here the confrontation, and the purpose of this prayer is because Israel was destitute. Israel was in a terrible condition, physically, spiritually, every way.  They were destitute.  They had no bread.  They had no water and all they had was what few things that could scrape up and Elijah was being taken care of by God.  If you read in the chapters before Elijah was taken care of at the brook Elijah was taking care of the at the widow's house.  Elijah was taken care of primarily totally by the Lord God of heaven, while everybody else was suffering Elijah was being provided for and the things that were given to him came from the Lord. 

6-4-2020, editing stopped at this point.

Now he has come to this point that there is will be an answer were going to find out who the real God is willing find out it's been image bail will serve by but if it's God you will serve God and so they were destitute.  They were in desperation they had nothing to fall back on.  Nothing left and now they turn to bail.  They cry out to bail.  They cry out to that false god that had been introduced to Israel by Ahab and Jezebel.  The even the father's house before them, how they were wicked against the Lord and despise God and despise God's people and their in leadership you know it's it's it's good when good people in leadership my it's bad when bad peoples in leadership and there was Ahab and his wife was wicked, Jezebel.  It's bad for that man rule a bad man about woman rule together against the Lord and God raises up Elijah that we read about in the New Testament as an example of a fervent righteous man praying to God for the answer that God would give him the answer in a time of destitution and desperation, but there's going to be a decision made today is the real God is going take care of this was going to be the one that we serve and so he comes and they have their day of foolishness.  No religion today is many times very foolish things they do that they say it's all because of the Lord is very foreign from the things of the Lord and that they go through their ritual.  They go through their prayer they go through their other things so I just ordered taunted them this and that.  He said maybe.  Maybe Bill just little babies going on a trip with an answer they cut themselves as they harm themselves physically.  No answer my friend is no answer from anything and anyone except the God of heaven, so they were praying to idol that had no ears to hear and no eyes to see he had no mouth to speak, had no power to perform and they were praying all day long because the evening time we read in the evening sacrifice, that Elijah.  He repaired the sacrifice the altar and he prays this short prayer, and he says hear me oh Lord, hear me the reason for that, and the purpose of this prayer is given here that this people may know that thou art the Lord God that word Lord there's all capital letters LYG and is the word that is for Jehovah thou art Jehovah.  Thank God.  Tonight we know who we said we can pray to him and he answers our prayer.  He may not answer by fire as he did in this particular time.  He may not answer by some miraculous thing that everybody can see that we know when God answers our prayers.  We know when God speaks to our heart and God gives to us the understanding that everything's going to be okay and so the prayer came down from God out of heaven, and his powerful prayer.  Elijah prayed heaven was moved God heard and God spoke to God and shut up heaven for those three years and six months because God told Elijah what was will take place.  Elijah prayed and in writing not for 3 1/2 years.  Can you imagine what what country would look like after three years and six months of no rain, no moisture, no due.  Everything was barren.  Everything was dead.  Everything was dry for the was no water pushing the water is a type of the water of life.  If you don't have water and I don't have life, and I will have vegetation if you don't have water in your body going to die and you don't have the water of life which is Jesus Christ you will die spiritually without him forever and forever without God's help.  It was built when Elijah prayed he said Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known this day that thou art God and his will.  Elijah said God, would you not prove who you are to these people that a powerful prayer.  God manifested his power.  Elijah's prayer magnified God and so therefore God gave the answer in the fire of God fell down from heaven and consumed everything that was there at the altar, all the water that had been put on it.  He would Elijah want to make sure that they couldn't blame him or accuse him of doing some trickery as we had more meltwater that which was very precious in those days because they were in the midst of the famine and then as water poured on the sacrifice and its branches soaked in the trench around it is for the water is running out and God sent down fire from heaven and licked up the water looked at the desk that had been there and licked up the rocks and consumed the altar and God's will do what is mentioned in the New Testament as a fervent prayer warrior.  The effectual fervent prayer of thank God receives the answer from the Lord our God was moved toward man and he proved himself to that generation as to who he was.  Elijah prayed and it rain not Elijah prayed in the fire for and that's what after that Elijah prays and there's water on the earth.  Thank God for the prayer of a righteous person.  You will find is a test of who truly is God.  Is it bail.  If it's bail, then let's see him answer.  They set the rules they set the weight of the answer.  Who would serve and they said whoever answers by fire were what I will serve.  And Elijah said that's fine for you know Elijah already knew that God was going to answer his prayer.  This was a test to prove to a generation of Israelites that had long forsaken the Lord that there is a God in heaven.  You and I tonight.  We must understand, we must realize even though we live in the midst of a group among a lot of people that no longer care about God no longer desire to hear about God no longer want to talk about God, but one of these days they're going to know who God really is.  One of these days it will stand before in the Bible says every knee shall bow every aching atheist that says there is no God.  What they feel about toward that one.  That is God.  Every person that has rejected the Lord Jesus Christ.  One day, every knee shall bow, and then the Bible says, every tongue, every mouth is going to confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of the father, thank God.  Tonight we have a Savior.  His name is Jesus, you talk about God all you want to around people they don't get too upset with you when you interject the name of Jesus Christ.  Then you start a problem.  It's all right to have you prayer, but don't ended in the name of Jesus, and wonder why that because that his name the wicked rebel against the it's all right to pray to your God.  When you pray, and you handed in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.  They they raise up all the things in their problems and they began to fight against you because we don't want him just like usual set will not have them rule over us.  One of these days every person that's rejected every person that rebelled every person that has rebuked God and turned her back up all got one day they shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord Elijah here prayed, God answered his prayer the product that is showing the foolishness of the world.  It showed that those those profits of bail.  How out of touch they were with who they were, what they needed.  It showed all the crowd that was watching that there was a God in heaven that was the whole point of Elijah praying to God's as well that they may know that they may know that there is a God in Israel that they may know, old Lord Jehovah, that they may know that you are the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that they need to.  Abraham was the new Jacob was a lady who Isaac was.  But they did know who God was, you know all the details about the Bible but you don't know the Lord you lost out on eternity by God help us tonight to know not only who Jesus is and some things about him, but my we know him in our heart and in our life.  The falseness of bail was displayed by him could not answer bail could not do bail could not send fire because bail was just a figment of their imagination.  We are told today that is a believer, we are archaic and were unlearned and we all know too much and were not not too smart.  As far as the world is concerned that what you have all those things said about you, but if you know Jesus Christ that's the main thing I got one day I met him by God to give their listing.  Probably you met him a few testing you have not met him.  I'm glad tonight.  You could do that.  I'm glad you could come to realize that is not some God out there that we cannot reach some God doesn't care it over.  If you study the religions of the world you will find that most people are afraid of their gods.  They do things to please their God.  They do things to make sure that God is not angry with them all our God.  You don't have to worry about him.  He's angry with the wicked every day for you and either a child of God.  He loves us.  He is concerned about us.  He wants to help us and stifle to us.  Elijah, a man fervently prayed that God answered his prayer that God gave him the answer and all of Israel realized there is a God in heaven.  You and I tonight we live in a world that's a wicked place that denies righteousness and holiness.  They deny the word of God.  One of these days, Lord Jesus is going to reveal himself to them and they will say Lord, every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus some other person.  But that Jesus is the son of God by God help us to be faithful and true in the calling that the Lord gives to us that we be like Elijah to pray fervently and may God answer our prayer.  There's times that.  Like I said last Wednesday.  Sometimes we think God then here's what he does.  Sometimes we think God not want answers but will God has his time God has his place God has his way and is always on time, right place, and always true and correct and good for us by the Lord help us tonight to pray and move heaven.  You know, some ice lost.  You know somebody that really do not believe their Christian I believe we can move heaven for them.  I will even cry out to God and pray for them that the Lord would open their heart that they might see and delete that they might understand that they need a work of the Lord in the MAB.  What will you family members him a piece many of your family members, like probably all of us need to pray for families, pray for those that need the Lord I pray that God would help them.  Maybe it's not a relative, but just a friend and they they know not God best thing you do for him is to pray for them and ask God to open their heart that they may come to know him as a personal savior.  Lord bless you and I pray God bless his word and pray that he will use it in our life that we can serve him in these days in which we live spell for prayer our father, thank you tonight for your love upon us.  Thank you for the moving of the spirit of God upon our life one day and we came to know and realize that there was a God in heaven.  We came to understand that God sent his son Jesus Christ to die on the cross of Calvary to shed his blood to live his life that I might have life.  Thank you Lord for salvation that you bestowed upon us what help us to pray in such a way that those around us with no that there is a God in heaven help us Lord to magnify him and show him to a lost and dying world.  We pray these things in Jesus name, amen.  I bless you tonight.  Our prayers are with you.

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(32B) 5-31-2020 Sunday Evening Service

Living With the End in View

by Bro. Lawrence Richardson

1Peter 4:1-11

1 Peter 4:1-11 (KJV)

Chapter 4: As Christ Suffered for Us in the Flesh, We Must Follow His Example.

1  Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;
2  That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.
3  For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:
4  Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:
5  Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.
6  For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.
7  But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.
8  And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.
9  Use hospitality one to another without grudging.
10  As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
11  If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

 

COMMENTARY by J. VERNON McGEE,

THEME: Suffering produces obedience to the will of God

Suffering Produces Obedience To The Will Of God (4:1)

In this passage of Scripture Peter makes it very clear that when life is easy there is danger of drifting into a state of mind which accepts every blessing in life as if it were owed to us. We come to the place where we do not prize or value life as we should. As a Christian, what value do you put upon life? God permits His children to suffer in order to keep us from sin and to give us a proper value of life. I hear so many young people today say that they did this or that in order to find a new direction for their life. May I say to you, suffering will give a new direction to life. David discovered this and wrote in Psalm 66:10, "For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried." God puts us through the test that it might draw us to Himself and give us a new direction and drive for life. Such is the purpose of suffering.

Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin [1Pet. 4:1].

I must confess that I have recently been given new insights into this verse. Over the years it is a verse that has disturbed me a great deal, and I have never gone into a great deal of detail in my teaching on it. I have been rather amazed to discover that other commentators have likewise more or less bypassed it rather than dealing with it in detail. I trust that the Spirit of God will give us an understanding that will make this verse helpful to us.

"Forasmuch" refers us back, I believe, to 1Peter 3:18, "For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit." These two verses go together, and this is again a reminder that in His human body Christ not only endured pain but He was actually put to death in the flesh.

In recent years there was a very popular book, When God Died, as well as a popular theology which said, "God is dead." Well, God never died, my friend, and He is not dead today -- He hasn't even been sick. Christ died in His human body, which He took yonder at Bethlehem. As the writer to the Hebrews put it, He was "in all points tempted like as we are." He knew what it was to suffer. He knew what it was to bleed. He knew what it was to shed tears. He knew what it was to be brokenhearted. He was perfectly human, and He died in that human body.

Christ brought an end to His relation to the sins of man when He died on the cross because He bore the penalty for sin in His own body. We are told back in 1Peter 2:24, "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed." Three times (1Pet. 2:24; 1Pet. 3:18; 1Pet. 4:1) Peter says that it was in His flesh and in His body that Christ paid the penalty for man's sin. That leads me to say this: Christ did not die in sin, nor did He die under sin, but He died to sin. He took my place, He took your place, and He paid the penalty for our sin. From that point on, Christ will not come back to die for sin. He will no longer have any relationship to sin Himself because of the fact that He arose from the dead. When He came back from the dead, He came in a glorified body. He was "quickened by the Spirit," or "made alive by the Spirit" is the better translation (see 1Pet. 3:18). He has a life that now lives in a body. He is up yonder in a body that is completely devoted to the service of God, for He is God and He is in the enjoyment of full and free access to God and to all creation.

Now Christ is able to make over this benefit to us. Peter tells us, "Arm yourselves likewise with the same mind." "The same mind" actually means "the same thought." Some people have said that it means resolution, but that is not quite the idea. This refers to the thought which leads to a resolution. This is what Paul spoke of when he said, "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 2:5). "Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh," Peter says, and those of us who have suffered in the flesh have "ceased from sin." The translation of the word ceased is a very unsatisfactory one, and this is what had disturbed me about this verse. The Greek word translated as "ceased" is pauo. In the active voice, pauo means "to stop or to cease." It is used like that in 1Corinthians 13:8, "Whether there be tongues, they shall cease"; that is, tongues are going to stop, and that is something I have emphasized in my teaching. When I was in Athens, Greece, I took a walk from the Hilton Hotel down to Constitution Square. As I would come to a corner, I would see a sign like our "Stop" sign, only there it said, Pauo. Pauo means "to stop" when it is used in the active voice. An active verb means that the subject does something; a passive verb (or the middle voice in the Greek) means that the subject is acted upon and the subject itself doesn't do anything. In this verse which we are studying, pauo is in the middle voice or the passive. Therefore Dr.Joseph Thayer, in his lexicon of the New Testament, translates this literally as "hath got release." In other words if you have suffered in the flesh, you've got release from sin. Just what does Peter mean by this? First of all, I would say that God will use suffering to keep you from sin. I am confident that many of us have experienced that personally. Suffering will keep us from sin, but Peter is saying more than that here. Peter says we have got release from sin. That means that God has made an adequate provision for you and me to live the Christian life. Dr. Griffith Thomas has said that in this verse Peter puts Paul's Romans 6 into a nutshell of just one verse. Romans 6 is that chapter which speaks of the provision God has made for you and me to live the Christian life.

Peter has made it very clear that we have been born again by the Word of God. The Spirit of God using the Word of God will produce a son of God. And that son of God now has a new nature, a new nature that is not going to live in sin.

The Bible's illustration of this truth, which I use a great deal, is the story of the Prodigal Son (see Luke 15:11-32). The Prodigal Son got down in the pigpen, but, you see, he wasn't a pig. He had the nature of his father who lived down the road in that wonderful mansion. Because that boy had the nature of his father, he didn't like eating out of a trough. He didn't like eating the swill that the swine ate. He enjoyed sitting down at a table covered with a white linen tablecloth and eating with a knife and fork. He liked having a nice steak or prime rib before him, with all the other delicacies, topped off with ice cream. That boy didn't care for the pigpen for he had the nature of his father.

Peter says you are now identified with Christ. When you came to the Lord Jesus and were born again, the Spirit of God baptized you, that is, He identified you with Christ. Now let that mind, that thought, be in you which is in Christ. Christ is up yonder at God's right hand in a body totally devoted to the service of God for you and me. Do you think, my friend, if you have really been born again, if you are really a child of God with a new nature, that you can go on living in sin? Now I am a Calvinist and I emphasize the security of the believer. However, I think that there is such an overemphasis on that point that many of our Arminian friends also need to be heard today. This is one reason I feel as kindly as I do toward the Pentecostals; they are preaching a doctrine that has been largely forgotten, the doctrine of holiness. They emphasize that believers should live a holy life for God today. My friend, you cannot be a child of God and go out and live in the pigpen. Let's face it -- if you do, you are a pig. Pigs live in pigpens and they love it, but sons do not love the pigpen.

Peter says that God has made every provision for you: you are born again, indwelt by the Spirit, baptized by the Spirit, identified with Christ, and you can now live life by the power of the Spirit of God. In Romans 7 Paul shows how the Christian is defeated when he lives in the flesh, but in Romans 8 he tells how God has provided the Holy Spirit that we might live by the power of the Spirit. Again I come back to this word pauo. It is not used in the active voice; what we have here is a word that does not mean "cease," but means "hath got release." God has made every arrangement for you and me not to live in sin today. It would be impossible for us to live in sin. Oh, the son might go to the pigpen, but you can put this down for sure, he will not stay in the pigpen. One day he has to say, "I will arise and go to my father..." (Luke 15:18).

If you are living in sin today and you are comfortable in it, I would surely question your salvation. Someone may ask, "Can a Christian do this or do that?" He might do it one time, my friend, but if he lives in sin there is something radically wrong. A child of God with a new nature longs to please Christ in all things. This is the reason that I believe the study of the entire Word of God is essential today. I know that I will be accused of playing on an instrument of only one string. Well, since I'm no musician, I have an instrument with only one string on it, and it is this: You need the total Word of God -- not just a few little verses to draw out some little legalistic system by which to live the Christian life. You cannot live the Christian life by following rules. You can live the Christian life only by having the mind of Christ, by having the Spirit of God moving in you to please God and to refrain from those things which bring disgrace to Him.

That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God [1Pet. 4:2].

Paul speaks very strongly in this connection in Romans; "For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace" (Rom. 8:5-6). What does Paul mean when he says "to be carnally minded is death"? Do you lose your salvation? No, it means you are dead to any fellowship with God. "If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth" (1John 1:6). My friend, you cannot live in sin and have fellowship with God. Sin is what is keeping people away from the Word of God today. I have to confess that Christians are a minority, and in teaching through the entire Bible as I do, I appeal only to the minority of the minority. A great many folk are trying to find a shortcut to living the Christian life, and there is no shortcut. God says that He will use suffering in your life in order to keep you from sin.

"That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God." We no longer take life for granted, for we have suffered, and God will use that suffering to keep us from sin.

As he continues, Peter begins to look ahead. Life is short --

For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries [1Pet. 4:3].

After we have been converted, we would be very foolish to spend our lives in the things which we did before. In fact, we cannot do that. We are now joined to Christ; we are united to Him, and we cannot run with the world to sinning. We must live today for God. What a tremendous truth this is! Life is short; time is fleeting, and we must recognize that we are going to come before Him for judgment before long.

"When we walked in lasciviousness lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries." Simon Peter spells out the sins here. Homer Rodeheaver was a personal friend of mine, and I loved him in the Lord. Years ago as we were having lunch together, I said to him, "Homer, you were with Billy Sunday for so many years. What do you say was the secret of his ministry?" He replied, "He preached on sin, and he always was specific when he spoke about sin. He spelled it out." Simon Peter spells it out here.

"Lasciviousness" -- that's living in sexual sin. "Lusts" -- that includes a great many things, lusting after the things of the flesh. "Excess of wine" is drunkenness. "Revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries." "Banquetings" should be translated "carousing." "Abominable idolatries" -- the Scriptures tell us that the love of money is the root of all evil; covetousness is idolatry in our day. These are the things which will take you away from God, and Peter clearly spells them out.

I am afraid that today we have a great many preachers who are pretty indefinite about sin. Some wag wrote: "If you've got religion, you don't know it. If you know it, you haven't got it. And if you've got it, you can't lose it. And if you lose it, you didn't have it. And if you never had it, you can't get it." Some of the talk I hear today sounds as vague as that. My friend, sin is spelled out here. It is written in bold letters; it's in neon lights in the Word of God, and there is no way of missing it.

Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you [1Pet. 4:4].

Either you are going to please God or you'll please men. And if you are pleasing men, you will not please God. The Lord Jesus said, "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you" (John 15:18). If the world does not hate you, then there is something radically wrong.

When I was sixteen years old, I began to work in a bank. They put me on the teller's cage when I was seventeen and promised me that the next year I would be made a junior officer. I felt that I was well liked and popular in that bank. Then I went to a young people's conference where I made my decision for Christ and to study for the ministry. I came back to the bank and resigned, yet they let me have a part-time job -- they were good to me in that way. But I found out that I was no longer the popular boy in that place. As a Christian I became very unpopular. In fact, the fellows with whom I had run ridiculed me, and they did a good job of it because they knew what my life had been before. That was a very difficult decision I made at that particular time.

I hope that I am not misunderstood when I tell this little story. In those days I went to dances; in fact, I was chairman of a dance committee. After I made my decision for Christ, I thought I would break off my old ties gradually. I went to the next dance with the idea that I would not dance but I would just stand around in the stag line. As I was standing there, I felt very much out of place. There was a fellow there from the bank above whom I had been promoted. He didn't care much for me, especially when I announced that I was studying for the ministry -- yet he was an officer in a church himself. He came over to me at that dance and said, "This is a h of a place for a preacher to be!" Do you know, that was the first time he had ever told me the truth. I agreed with him. I found out that you cannot break off gradually. The world is not going to appreciate you very much when as a Christian you try to continue on with them. I walked out of that place, never to walk back in again.

My friend, I do not believe that you can go on in sin if you are a child of God. You have the nature of Christ; you are joined to Him. He suffered down here once; He is suffering no more, but He can help you. He sent the Holy Spirit down to indwell those who are His own. We have been baptized into the body of believers, as Peter has pointed out to us, and now, being filled with the Holy Spirit, we can live for God. We cannot do it in our own strength but in His strength.

Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead [1Pet. 4:5].

"Ready to judge the quick [the living] and the dead." The whole world, the living and the dead, are going to be judged by the Lord Jesus someday. Will He judge believers, too? He sure will! Not for salvation, which was assured when they became children of God, but He will not let a believer get by with sin since He is judging the world for sin. Because God does judge Christians in the world -- He chastens His children -- the unbeliever had better beware. He is warned that he will come up someday for judgment.

For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit. [1Pet. 4:6].

"For this cause" -- that is, because of coming judgment, the Gospel was preached. God wants the Gospel preached to all men. And if they don't hear the Gospel or respond to the Gospel, He makes it very clear that they are already dead in trespasses and sins, and they will be judged as men in the flesh. But if they accept Christ, they can live according to God in the Spirit. The Lord Jesus said in 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" -- he was in a state of death. He further amplified this thought at the time of the death of Lazarus: "Jesus said unto her [Martha], I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?" (John 11:25-26, italics mine). In other words, you and I were dead in trespasses and sins. Paul meant the same thing when he wrote to the Ephesians, "And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins" (Eph. 2:1). We were spiritually dead. Paul went on to say, "Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world.... fulfilling the desires of the flesh..." (Eph. 2:2-3). Peter is saying the same thing here in this verse. The gospel is being preached, and when the gospel is being preached, two things happen. Some accept it, and if they accept it, they are going to live for God and live throughout eternity. Others reject it, and those who reject the gospel are the men who are dead in sins and are dead to God throughout eternity; that is, they have no relation to Him whatsoever.

But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer [1Pet. 4:7].

"But the end of all things is at hand." That has been true since the day the Lord Jesus went back to heaven. Paul could say that the coming of Christ was imminent: "Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ" (Titus 2:13). Peter says, "The end of all things is at hand." God is going to bring this world to a standstill one of these days while He judges it. He will take His own out of the world, and there will be a lot of things to straighten up in the lives of believers. They will go before the judgment seat of Christ, not regarding salvation but regarding rewards, regarding the life which they have lived for God. This is another reason we should live for God -- we are coming up for judgment.

"Be ye therefore sober. and watch unto prayer. "Sober" should be translated "soberminded." Peter uses this expression a great deal. He actually means, "Be ye therefore intelligent." Be an intelligent Christian. An intelligent Christian is one who knows the Bible; that is, he will know it the best he can. (I often make the confession that I marvel at my ignorance of the Word of God. The more I study it, the more I see how little I really know about the Word of God.) But, my friend, an intelligent, sober-minded Christian is going to know all he can about the Word of God.

The Christian is also to be intelligent in this evil world. The Lord Jesus said to His disciples, "Be ye therefore wise as serpents, and helpless as doves" (Matt. 10:16). You need to have the wisdom of a serpent today; if you don't, another snake around the corner is going to bite you, I can assure you of that!

"Watch unto prayer." In other words prayer should have in it that anticipation, that expectation of the coming of Christ. Our prayer meetings are dead today because we are not looking for Him. He is the living Christ. We ought to talk to Him now for we are going to talk to Him hereafter. And at the judgment He is going to talk to us -- that is the thing I'm not so sure I'm looking forward to!

And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins [1Pet. 4:8].

"Have fervent love among yourselves, for charity [love] shall cover the multitude of sins." Peter is talking about our relations as believers today. The writer of the Proverbs said, "Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins" (Prov. 10:12). Hatred in a church will stir up strife. This little clique will be against that little clique, and these folk will be against somebody else, and all that type of thing. But love covers up all that. Maybe you don't like the way your pastor combs his hair. I knew a pastor in Texas who told me that he had a lock of hair right on top of his head which would always stand up no matter how he combed it. He said that the choir threatened to quit because of it. They sat behind him and could always see that hair come up sometime during his sermon. They actually became angry with him because of that lock of hair. Every time he went for a haircut he had the barber cut it off because he did not want to offend his choir. Imagine that type of thing! If they had had love in their hearts, that lock of hair wouldn't have bothered them one bit.

Use hospitality one to another without grudging [1Pet. 4:9].

I think hospitality can also be expressed in ways other than entertaining in your home. The minister who is traveling and speaking in conferences needs to be alone. He and his wife need to have a room in a motel where he can study and pray rather than be in a home where he has to carry on conversation all the time. May I say, if you want to extend hospitality to your visiting speaker, take care of his motel bill. Maybe you could also invite him out for dinner.

"Without grudging." However we extend our hospitality, it should be done with real warmth.

As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God [1Pet. 4:10].

"As every man hath received the gift" -- "the gift" means a particular spiritual gift, and there are many gifts. Paul tells us in 1Corinthians 12 that there is one body and many members and that the church is a body in which there are many members and many gifts. I don't know who you are, and I don't know what your gift is; I do know that if you are a child of God, you have some gift and you are to be using it in serving one another.

If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen [1Pet. 4:11].

If a man is not speaking the Word of God, he has no business standing in the pulpit. We have no business saying we are teaching the Bible when we are not really teaching it.

"If any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth." In other words, here is one man who teaches the Bible one way and another who teaches it another way, and you say, "I like this one, and I don't like the other." Well, the other man's method may appeal to someone to whom your man doesn't appeal. We should let each one minister "as of the ability which God giveth."

"That God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen." Peter says that we are to teach the Word of God in such a way that God may get glory through Jesus Christ.

Peter is now going to talk about a different type of suffering. The people to whom he was writing were now moving into the orbit of the hurricane of persecution which broke out during the reign of Nero. Nero had already begun the persecution of the Christians in Rome, and it was spreading out through the empire. Peter warns his people that they are moving into that orbit of suffering. Many of them would become martyrs. You and I may not become martyrs -- I trust we won't -- but we are going to suffer in this world, my friend.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.


(Draft 1, 6/1/2020)

TRANSCRIPT of this evening’s message.  It has not been edited yet.  As it stands it is about 85% accurate.  It is generated with the software Nuance Dragon V15.

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TRANSCRIPT of MESSAGE, 5-31-2020, SUNDAY EVENING

Living with the End in View

by Bro. Lawrence Richardson

Message on 1Peter 4:1-11

As Christ suffered for us in the flesh, we mut follow his example

1 Peter 4:1-11 (KJV)

1  Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;
2  That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.
3  For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:
4  Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:
5  Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.
6  For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.
7  But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.
8  And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.
9  Use hospitality one to another without grudging.
10  As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
11  If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

 

The old song that we just sung, farther along,  and one of these days we will understand it and bye and bye and then the Lord will come one day we shall see him and will rejoice in knowing the blessing of the Lord, and those unanswered questions that we have will be answered for those things that we do not understand. Thank God he will help us and he will give us a complete understanding in that.

Tonight if you would turn to your Bibles, First Peter chapter number four.  The book of first Peter chapter number four.  We are going to continue on with the subject thought of this morning. We dealt with rebellion against authority and the I'm glad the Lord gave good liberty in preaching the message and giving it some thought along the line of rebellion and rebellious people, and certainly we are seeing the fruits of rebellion in our country and we are saying things take place that should never take place in a country such as America.  But we are seeing this as we are here  tonight, all across our nation it is happening.  There are demonstrations and riots taking place everywhere; and the will understand that better also. I’m trying to just imagine the destruction that is taking place; and you and I tonight as a believer, we are in this world that were the thank God were not of this world that we are in this world, thank God we are not OF this world, and that this world has an influence upon us.  The world has influences upon things that happen, and sometimes we do not know we don't know the answer.  We don't know why. But that will understand it better by-and-by, And praise the Lord we we know that. 

So tonight we are going to continue on as as we have looked at the rebellion and the rebellious heart this morning.  I want us to deal tonight with how are we to live.  Those of us that are not of this world, but are in this world.  How are we to live in this problem, time. I believe the Bible has the answer for every question that we have for every difficulty that comes our way.  God has an answer given to us and he certainly freely gives it to us from the Scripture.

And so tonight in first Peter chapter number four; I was going to start in verse 1 but I believe I will start in verse 7 thru 11. In these end times in which we live, how are we to live, how are we going to survive in these days that are ahead

First Peter chapter 4 verse number 7 says,

7  But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.
8  And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.
9  Use hospitality one to another without grudging.
10  As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
11  If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

The apostle Peter writes here and he gives us some thoughts of the end time.  Now Peter could set and right some 2000 years ago the words that we read in verse number seven the end of all things is at hand.  If it was at hand to him.  It is really at hand to you and I we must remember, God doesn't Google the same timeframe that we do all we can time but the of the tics of the clock in the turn of the calendar we we make plans and preparations.  According to a schedule and sometimes that the schedules work out.  Sometimes they don't work out, but we are bound by this thing of time and so Peter makes the statement here in verse 7 -  the end of all things is at hand

I believe tonight we can understand and knowing the timeframe that God gives us in his word.  I believe the time of the Gentiles is just about over those days that God calls the times of the Gentiles, when God has opened up his mercy and his grace to a world that knows him not, and that he is given the timeframe were weirdest and speak the gospel and tell the wonderful story of the Lord Jesus Christ.  But there's coming a time when nationally in theirs as the song says this coming time when man shall work no more.

We have time now, we have opportunity, Proverb says that every man is given time and chance your time and opportunity, and we have that but there's coming a day there's coming a time when that opportunity is going to cease our our malls will be shut either by the passing of time that we die or malls will be shut collectively when the Holy Spirit is removed and in presence and power as the people of God are enraptured out of this world.

 And so there is a time at hand and this in time and were at the end of that time and getting ready to usher in a different timeframe that the Scripture calls the time of Jacob's trouble, and so how are we to live, how are we to respond and sometimes I be the first one to admit sometimes I don't respond correctly.

 Sometimes my attitude is maybe not what it ought to be and sometimes we don't understand maybe other folks is maybe we should.  But how according to these verses here tonight and will only be reading one another one or two other places, but primarily tonight in these verses. 

Since we see that the end of all things is at hand, how do we live.  We are, I believe, we are living in the last moments of the last days of this time we call the Church Age or the Age of grace that many people call; and so tonight as we are living in these times we might say that we are living in most exciting times in history and there are some things that are exciting in our world, there are some things it's happening that are very exciting as far as accomplishments of medicines and accomplishments of in scientific make means and ways and I just today heard of the astronauts that went up yesterday.  They rendezvoused with the space station that and they were talking about how minute and how it had to be down to the millisecond when they lifted off so they could get to where they were going at the right time to be able to do that and to me it's mind-boggling how a person can figure all that out

But you know there only reason that Man can figure those things out.  To that amount of detail is that God put everything in motion.  Just exactly right.  Nothing out of kilter.  Everything is right and you can calculate if a person wants to calculate where the sun will be 10 years and that they can do that because it does not change. 

There are laws of this universe that will not and do not change. And so we have that ability. So, those things are exciting for me to even think about how the world how can someone do that.  It's exciting to me that to understand that a doctor can open up your body and repair your heart and even take the heart out of the body to repair it and you're still alive.  But those things are beyond my comprehension and ability to understand. But thank God they can do that because we are fearfully and wonderfully made - everything about us. 

God has put in order and put the process that and so we are living in exciting times.  We are also living in exasperating times of trouble.  Sometimes the Bible says ‘in the last days perilous times shall we have’ - looked at that verse… Not too long ago and so we are living in troublesome times, and when you get home tonight and you turn on your TV you listen to the to the news, maybe even local news, you'll find that were living in troublesome times, the policeman being shot out somewhere in California I believe late Friday night and the just struggles everywhere destruction everywhere us all just a moment to go out that a target store things in Philadelphia.  They had torn the doors off people going and coming and some lady had a buggy, it was piled up as far as it could be piled up and stuff underneath it and they had to help her over the little so she could get out.  She just drove down the sidewalk like nothing wrong trouble sometimes folks discouraging times and so how are we to live for.  We to do is have mentioned this morning the fiber of our country is quickly being weakened that one one time some time and maybe before we realize that the fiber will rip and we were have real difficulty.

 There's very little integrity left in our country, and integrity is what the Bible says would solve all the problems. …. he had it in loses integrity and he had had an understanding who God was and that God is in control and he said neck. … ‘I came into this world naked.  I leave this world blessed be the name of the Lord.

 Joe was a man of integrity and character.  We see it disappearing.  There is political and religious heresy running rampant everywhere in our country.  When you have political figures stating that that America needs to fall and needs to be destroyed and they do everything they can do to make that happen. 

We were in a puritanical world and we hear religious leaders to speak, how that it's okay to destroy okay to tear down okay to kill a baby okay to do.  Although we were in a world of trouble and sorrow and so Peter says when we see these things.  Peter says that we know that the end of all things is at hand.  Then he says he tell it in the next portion of these verses tells us how we are to respond. 

I read that and sometimes I don't respond correctly.  Sometimes I don't respond like I should.  Sometimes my attitude is not what it should be, but here he tells us how to have handled these issues know the first step downward for nation is that it surrenders its high opinion of God is don't have emerged much of opinion into more of who God is, suck some people and many people in our country don't even know there is a God, and now talk about what you can pray to your God.  I pray to my God, I'm sorry.  They're not the one pray to ask the God of the Bible.  And so we find that we are ignorant as a nation concerning even who the Lord is and we have lost the high opinion of the God of heaven.  The Judeo-Christian attitude of of what is right and what is wrong is being destroyed.  We are challenged these days, but we're not changed too much.  We are convicted that were not converted.  We hear but we really do not listen many times to what is being said, we deceive ourselves, and have deceived ourselves for years and how that now we see the results of that man.  The name Volvo J chamber said God never gives us discernment in order that we may criticize but that we that we may intercede we we go on behalf of someone else over the book of Psalms number 79 will read a few verses here, and that the maybe of the only place they one other place that will turn tonight, but in Psalm number 79 will read beginning in verse number one, and is all has 13 verses will read those words together, says, oh God either a comment that I had a inheritance by holy temple having to file the heavenly Jerusalem on heaps the dead bodies of thy servants have they given to be meet under the files of heaven of the flesh of thy saints of the beast of the earth there.  Glad have a shed like water around about Jerusalem, and there was none to bury them.  We are become a notice the world we are become a reproach, reproach to our neighbors a scorn and derision to them that are round about us.  How long Lord will now be angry forever.  Thou shall by jealousy burn like fire, pour out of my wrath upon the heathen that I that have not known the upon the kingdoms that have not called upon by name, for they have the buyer Jacob and laid waste, the dwelling place or remember, not against I not against us of former iniquities, let thy tender mercies speedily prevent us, for we are brought very low.  Someone said this morning we need to pray for the mercy of God ideas Ms. Barbara said that that we need the mercy of the Lord, and of all times.  We need God's mercy.  If we get God's wrath.  If our nation has the wrath of God a fall upon it.  Then we have seen anything yet, but thank God for his mercy that he does not give us what we deserve and gives us grace any offers to us grace that we might have ability to serve him.  Verse number nine of that same Psalm says help us, O God of our salvation for the glory of thy name and deliver us and purge away our sins for the namesake, wherefore should the heathen say of where is their God, let him be known among the heathen in our side by the revenging of the blood of thy servant, which is dead.  Let the sign of the prisoner come before the according to the greatness of thy power preserved thou those are appointed to die and rendering to our neighbors sevenfold into their bows and their reproach of wherewith they have reproach.  The old overlord so we thy people notice so we thy people, the sheep of my pastor will give you thanks for ever and will show forth thy praise to all generations.  Davis in regards what takes place.  The people of God are show forth the praise of the glory of the God of heaven, and so on before the Lord comes, the Scriptures are clear that nations are going to be distressed and is very clear that the human mind is going to be distorted and will follow after lies and be deceived on every every Friday is very clear that the Bible teaches that morality is what will almost disappear and the so we were living in those last things were living as funny tells us here the end of all things is at hand.  How do we live, what do we do.  He says in verse number seven BG.  Therefore, the word therefore is a word that tells us to refer back to what Justin said the time the end time is before us.  So therefore, since that is before us.  Here's how we are to live.  Here's what we are to do.  Here's what we are to have in our life.  First of all, he says to be sober works over there means to be in control.  You want your TV tonight.  You can find a lot of people that are not in control is therein and thereunder control of their under control of the wicked one, and that he is prodding them to do the things that that they are doing, but as a child of God.  Tonight I in these days in which we live.  We to be a sober minded person.  That means a call sound minded individual to understand that what's taking place.  God God knows all about it God or gods really has directed and and so those places been ordered to bring about his will and not in the lives of this world to live in ordered life sober ordered life to be used of God, the light is is been said many times, the light shines the brightest in the darkest of the night in the evening time if was to turn out all the lights here in the building and you set a candle appear on the pool pit.  You could see the flicker of flame but it really went about the whole because are still like trying around us, but as the progression of time goes in the sun goes down, and the darkness comes up on the this part of our earth.  If I did that light that is shining now that doesn't seem to bright all of a sudden it becomes a a glowing light that calls us to its attention and I believe that's what we as a child of God ought to be denied a light shining in the dark world, a world that has no hope without Jesus Christ, a world that has no hope without the Lord Jesus coming up on them and so we are to live a calm and ordered life in these days in which we live.  I don't have any problem.  Think about what I'm going to accomplish what I will do after the service over I will go home probably is snack for long go to bed my life I hope will be common ordered hope yours will be but out there on the far corners of our our nation and the round are our world is likely will not live in ordered life and a lot of people not living a sober life.  While people not living a a calm life but you and I tonight.  In the midst of all the struggles we to live a sober life.  We live in a sound minded life for the Lord Jesus Christ it's ordered by the word of God.  This book that I hold before me in the book that you have before you is a book that tells us right and wrong tells us what's good and what's evil.  There's no gray area with God.  It's either black or white.  It's either right or wrong.  There's no in between round with the Lord.  And so we find as a as a believer tonight in this time in which we see that the end of all things is at hand.  The get.  Therefore, because of that, he says, be therefore sober the call minded sound minded in the things that we do live according to the Scripture.  The next part of that verse says, and watch and prayer.  So here's two things in verse number seven.  First of all live a sober calm ordered life and then it tells us that we should be people of prayer.  Verse seven and watch under prayer I believe we need to pray and be praying for our country.  If there was a time, our nation needed God and it is now if there was time we need to pray for our nation.  Pray for people.  It is now.  There are, I'm sure there are churches in all these cities that have been writing against in the up people's got I'm sure there are churches is been destroyed along with businesses for people do not really show any difference.  So therefore we need to be people.  Usually we need to be people of prayer that we would call upon the Lord to be with our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ folks that we may never meet folks that we may never be able to shake hands with.  I we may never see them till we get over in glory about we are duty-bound to pray for them now because the struggles are upon us and what's happening there tonight may happen here next week.  The problems of today.  Here, there may be the problems of tomorrow, for you and I watch under prayer that needs to be aware and to watch while we are are praying so would live a call sober orderly life.  While we do that we will be praying were not be fighting not to be fessing up to be out demonstrating we just be as a child of God is Christian.  We are to pray for one another.  It takes the faithful servant on watch watch.  The Scripture talks about watchmen.  What a night that watchmen on the wall will be looking out and he would be he would be watching for danger that would be appearing and I believe you and I tonight ought to be watchmen on the wall that we would see the danger that that is arising the danger that is coming in while we do that we are to be praying.  Look at verse number eight not only I will be sober not only be praying.  But above all things have fervent charity among yourselves for charity shall cover a multitude of sins.  The third thing that's mentioned here is that we should not only pray for each other, but we are to have charity or love one to another, the Bible and Christian says love is the greatest of all things.  Thank God for the expression of emotion that comes to the child of God.  You and I tonight.  We can love others because God first loved us and we love him tonight because he expressed his love to us before we had any idea that he was even there.  Loving us and so denied that the Scripture here tells us that above all things fervent charity among yourselves for charity shall cover a multitude of sins were charity means live pray for first with his 13 talks about law and how it covers all those things I have it does nice, not envious, and all those places listed there.  And above all things, is this thing called love or charity now by faith, hope and charity in the greatest of these is charity faith in God, hope in the Lord and love one toward another toward our God told we should have a calm life live a ordered life a sober life sound minded life.  We should watch for the things that we can see to know that the Lord is coming in as we are watchmen on the wall.  We are to be sounding out the trumpet sound that Jesus is coming tonight.  Maybe the last message that I would preach tonight.  Below may be the last message you ever hear but while we do while we are doing and what we are saying.  He says I do it soberly.  I do it with with the prayer and do it with love.  I've heard a lot of good messages, but they sure are lacking on this thing called charity and so the Scripture says in these days that we know the end is at hand.  Here's how we live have a calm ordered life.  The men and women of prayer love one another and give you to give verse after verse Galatians chapter 5 Romans chapter 5 all the Scriptures that talk about the love of God and how that we are to love one another.  That's how we to live in these days were we are.  He tells us here in these these verses use hospitality one to another without grudging hospitality means that being busy being able to give do it to serve the Lord Jesus Christ.  God has entrusted us with spiritual gifts.  Everyone of us tonight as a believer.  God has given us certain things that we can do that nobody else can do.  There are people that you can talk to that I couldn't even even knock on the door and I would need talk to me, but you can do that.  There folks.  Maybe I can reach that you cannot recent God gives us ability and therefore we are to be busy in the Lord's work with whatever God is.  Entrusted us with the says that verse number 10 be as good stewards were Stewart means caretaker.  The Lord is entrusted us with certain things and would take care of I will turn to speak for him and take care those things that he has blessed us with so will be busy in the Lord's work is not time to wait, not time to stop nighttime turn back his time BBC work for the night is coming we know the nights out there and I believe were seeing the shadows fall upon us.  I believe were seeing some of the some of the shadows coming in the nightfall is coming what we today just give up and quit thinking.  Forget and always stay busy and work for the night as it comes to speak boldly for the Lord Jesus Christ with verse number 11 if any man speak for you if you don't speak he says let him speak as the oracles of God.  If any man minister, let him do it.  As the ability which God giveth the ability that God gives us.  I've heard some great orators that were preachers and as they preach.  They could paint you a picture and you can sit there and see the very thing they were before they were preaching about, and you can visualize in your mind.  They had the ability to do that.  I don't have that ability.  Not everybody does have, but whatever God has given us.  We are to use it for the glory of God were to use it for the for the blessing and would use it for the for the time that God's given us that we tell people about the Lord Jesus Christ and so he says here if if you have a gift, let let that gift be known, and that he says if you speak speak as the oracles of God speak the word of God were to work with Army's word.  The word of God.  What you speak.  Make sure this is backing us up my opinion, your opinion, does the mountain anything that this is not opinion.  This is truth and so when we speak we speak the truth.  We try not to.  We should never put our color on it are our thoughts are our supposition on we just need say this is what God says some ice as well.  That's just how you read it while you read the words and we read the words is not how we read.  That's how we accept it or or not accept, and so as we see the end coming will be busy in the Lord's work would speak boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.  We need to be a spokesman for the Lord a mouthpiece for God.  Jesus doesn't speak orally today.  God doesn't speak in an audible voice.  Today God speaks through his word.  God speaks to his people and so therefore we are to be a mouthpiece for the Lord.  We are ambassadors for Christ, the Scripture says that means we are taking the place of the Lord Jesus Christ.  We are his ambassador and what we say should reflect what he says.  Our country has ambassadors all across the world and those ambassadors.  Their job is to speak what the leadership of this country says and to follow the direction they don't have a choice in what they think they don't have a voice and how they think they are ambassadors of so therefore they are people that are representing you and I tonight think the Lord we are representatives of the God of heaven.  So as we see the in car they we speak boldly in his name and do everything to the glory of our God.  Any man speak is because oracles of God for man minister, let him do it.  As of the ability which God giveth.  This is why that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ him the praise and dominion for ever and ever.  Amen.  Peter puts in these four Bible verses here how we are to live as we see the day approach a sober, well grounded life sound mind and life alive.  That is a life of prayer.  A life that is to love one another to do the Lord's work to speak boldly in his name and do everything not for our glory for his glory.  Not that I make a name for myself is not important if nobody in this world knows Lawrence Richardson is not important if anybody knows who you are, but is is important that we point everybody to the Lord Jesus Christ, that they might know who he is not that we glorify self but Peter says here that in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion forever and ever.  And then he just says so be it.  A man what a wonderful message that Peter gives to us to live in these last days.  Exciting times.  Yes, exasperating times.  Yes, I believe also were living in the exiting time one of these days soon and very soon we shall see the king farther along will know all about all the questions will be answered.  They got all the tears will be wiped all the heartaches will be gone all the struggles will be over because we are in his presence and to him be praise and glory and dominion for ever and forever.  A man may God bless the reading of his word tonight and the few thoughts that we have that's how we to live while the world will follow primarily what were considering tonight what with thing about all our nation's literally imploding foundations are being destroyed.  The Scripture says, is the foundation of business or what shall the righteous do I think I gave you the one answer tonight here in first Peter truth is fallen in the streets.  The Scripture says those things are are falling by the wayside.  What are we to do.  Just keep on keeping on, for the Lord Jesus Christ.  May God help us to do that in these days that are ahead of us stand together tonight and will have a word of prayer our father as we come to you.  We do thank you for the privilege of the first of all, knowing you that you came to us one day and revealed yourself, and you gave us.  Even the faith to believe that when I have life at the Lord I pray tonight for our country.  Lord we read in your word so many times, of the condition that Israel got itself into because of rebellion because it miss use the profits in the preachers and the princes and misuse the word of God brought judgment.  What we've read about that.  What I pray tonight it's you would show mercy to our nation.  Dear God, we ask you to bring our country sometimes we need to be brought to our knees in order that we might once again rise to the faithfulness of God's people.  The Lord we ask you to show us mercy board.  We also pray that you give us grace as we follow the things of this world see what's taking place.  God give us the grace to know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to those who are the called according to your purpose.  Forgive us we pray and we ask these things in Jesus precious name.  Amen


(32A) 5-31-2020 Sunday Morning Service

Rebellion Against Authority

by Bro. Lawrence Richardson (38 min )

1 Samuel 15:23

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1 Samuel 15:23 (KJV)
23  For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

COMMENTARY by J. Vernon McGee

This is one of those remarkable passages of Scripture. This is God's rejection of Saul as king on the basis of his rebellion and disobedience to God. This is an important message for all of us who claim to be children of God.

There is a great deal of this informal and friendly approach to the Lord Jesus Christ today. There are so many little songs that go something like this: "Jesus is a friend of mine." We need to be careful how we use an approach like this to Him. When you say that Jesus is a friend of yours, what do you mean? Actually, you are trying to bring Him down to your level. If I would say that the president of the United States is a friend of mine, I would be bringing him down to my level. But suppose that the president announced that Vernon McGee is his friend. That would bring me up to his level. When we begin to talk about Jesus as "a friend of mine," we are not being Scriptural. The Lord said, "Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you" (John 15:14). Are you obedient unto Him? How dare any of us call Him friend if we are not obeying Him? To disobey Him is worse than witchcraft. It is rebellion against God. When you meet a person who is totally disobedient to the Lord, you almost have to conclude that he does not belong to the Lord at all. Now I am not saying that works enter into salvation. I am saying that if you are a child of God, if you come to the place where you know Him, you will obey Him. He also said, "If ye love me, keep my commandments" (John 14:15). I am of the opinion that if you would say to the Lord, "I don't love you," He would say, "Forget about My commandments." The important thing is to be rightly related to the Lord Jesus Christ. To be a child of God is to know Him personally. That is what makes Christianity different from any religion in the world. You can be a Buddhist without knowing Buddha. You can be a follower of Confucius without knowing him. You can be a member of any other religion without knowing the founder, but you cannot be a Christian, friend, without knowing the Lord Jesus Christ. And to know Him is life eternal.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

Transcription of the Service

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Is right now in rough draft form. Don't call the English teacher! And it is in Microsoft Word, .docx. If you can't open it up or want a different format just email Bro. Richardson, See Home Page for email.

Rebellion Against Authority

by Bro. Lawrence Richardson

5-31-2020 Sunday Am Service

1 Samuel 15:23

1 Samuel 15:23 (KJV)
23  For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

So this morning I want us to look into the book of first Samuel chapter number 15.  Before we read the verses I will make a few statements and always some other verses.  Also, you don't have to turn to these, but in the book of Isaiah chapter number one,  these are some verses that just all my heart, not necessarily part of the message in Isaiah chapter number one. 

Isaiah says your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire, your land strangers to buyer in your presence and it is desolate is overthrown by strangers. 

That pretty well describes our nation this morning.  I read that the major cities last night over 75 of those cities across our country had the demonstrations.  Many of the riots destruction of property.  Indianapolis had three people killed. Nashville, their city hall in the old courthouse burned xxxxx. So those are things that should catch our attention to make us realize that we are in a very unsettled unstable country at this time.  Down through the years we have seen other countries fall and we would say that could never happen in our country and I believe we are seeing the possibility that it might happen even in our lifetime. 

In the last two or three months we have seen a nation go from flourishing economically to now over 40 million people are on unemployment.  This morning more jobs have been lost.  Businesses have been close.  Many of them will never be opened again. And now we have people that are running the streets destroying what few businesses that are trying to open and a nation cannot survive with that continual process. 

The Bible tells us also in the book of Psalm chapter number 29 and verse number two

Psalm 29:2 (KJV)
2  Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.

have referred to this verse.  Many times it says when the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice, but when the wicked bear through the people more when righteousness rules people rejoice when wickedness rules of the Scripture says here that we mourn.

There's there's the difference.  Big difference between rejoicing in Christ and seeing very little and the processes taking place right now, to rejoicing.  I still believe and will always believe that we are seeing the results of doing away with even the thought of God in our heart.  Romans chapter 1 says that people get to the point that they do not want to retain the knowledge of God and I believe that's where we have been, where we are we seeing our businesses closed, we are seeing our churches closed.  Some of them are still not reopened. Many others across the country of church is still not being able to have church in that way.  We have no guarantee that will be here next Sunday.

This past Friday about the midnight hour, the Supreme Court set down a ruling that the states and officials have the authority to restrict and limit church attendance.  Who would ever fall that that that would take place in our country, we still have a constitution, but if you have rulers and judges and justices, especially the highest and you can go no higher than that, when they say you that the governors and political parties are political people. 

Municipalities have the power to shut down religious institutions because of a virus over if I can do it because of that they can do for something else or some other reason. 

So this morning our country is in a very shaky position as far as it comes to God and the I've got good news.  We don't have to have the Supreme Court.  I'm glad we have the Supreme Judge and he is our God and the if you ever put much confidence in Supreme Court every ruling that could go the right way always goes the wrong way.  Chief justice Robert cited with four liberals on the court therefore making that ruling Friday night and that he's not as conservative as everybody maybe thought he was,  regardless of what the Supreme Court does. 

We have a God in heaven.  That is the Supreme Authority.  So, this morning in the book of first Samuel, I want us to read one verse, and note some things about what's taking place in our country.  First Samuel chapter 15 verse number 23.  Here's the, as the saying goes, here's the crux of the whole matter.  Here's the bottom line:  For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is not in iniquity and idolatry.  Here's the reason, because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord and has also rejected the from being king. 

If we took time this morning we could go back in the first verses are all these verses preceding this you will find that King Saul had an directive from the Lord.  He had been told to destroy the enemy, and that we know the story how that they went to battle and Saul, the best sheep in the best cattle and he spared them when God told him to destroy utterly destroy those things.  He kept the king alive and so therefore God rejected him from being king.  Because of that one particular main thing that he rebelled against God, God said, “I want you to do this and salsas wipe out a better plan.  I've got a better way. 

I believe America is in trouble this one because for years we thought we had a better plan.  We thought we had a better way of doing things you don't want to warp children's minds so you don't teach the Bible.  You don't teach morality, you don't do any of those things are the educational system that would bring about the thought that there is a God in heaven.  Now we have a generation that knows him not. Now have a generation that's living their own way and doing their own thing and nobody can tell them how to do and seemingly no one can even control them.  So here in Samuel first Samuel 15, we find that the Scripture says rebellion is the sin of witchcraft and it's because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord.  The problem in America this morning is not politics and that is a problem, but that's not the bottom line problem.  The problem this morning is not how people are leaving and what they're doing.  The problem this morning.  As a nation we have rejected the word of the Lord.  We have rejected what thus saith the Lord, and when you do that, God says there's only two things that can happen.  You either will repent of that or God says I will bring judgment was very obvious that our nation has not repented and soul could maybe some of these things are happening be a result of the judgment of God upon country that once stood for the Lord.  We were known around the world as the people of God but little by little it's been chiseled away little by little, are desires and our hopes and our dreams of our fathers had our fathers before them, and has been chiseled away by folks that have no longer been taught or trained what thus saith the Lord.  Now the destruction of a great nation doesn't happen overnight is just a little by little process that all of a sudden she falls I'm not making a prediction that America is going to fall while tell you one thing America.  Shirley certainly is trimming today all I heard the mayor of Atlanta and listen to different governors in different majors and they're all saying the same thing.  It's not about the man that was killed by the police is not about that now.  It is not about him.  It's about giving me what I want taking it and doesn't matter what I destroy to get you look at some of the pictures across our nation.  It looks like we've been in war, and some of those places have literally been a war zone.  Looking at the crowds in the rioters that are filling the streets and filling the the processes of everything around them.  It looks like 1/3 world country that I viewed in days gone by.  America has always been a nation of laws and respect for law and the law is not always been right.  And certainly that policeman should not have done what he did to that that individual is not about color.  It's about what's right and what's wrong and what that policeman did.  He was totally totally wrong and should should pay the the price part of the problem is.  It took them three or four days to even charge him with anything and the us overseeing the reader the results of people being frustrated and they take out their frustration on folks that have nothing to do with we have we have protested in our own city Evansville last night was was full and some of the things that if you was listening to some of the language was was very vulgar.  I turned down the volume.  Just sort of watch without hearing all the junk being said and what that's a as a result of not knowing God.  That's a result of living without God and not having God in your thoughts.  And so we find that all America this morning is not the nation.  She was six months ago and had the virus regardless of what we feel about that or what we think about that.  It has brought us down most of it by the statements from governors that took authority in their own way of doing what they want to do mostly by so-called expert doctors that and they will readily admit I have no idea what what the answer is that we get we have fallen to the the clutches and the powers of those that have some been elected, and some have not been some of been a point.  But the bottom line.  Problem is, not as a set of overcoat is not politics, it's the precepts of God's word that we have rejected and so here we find this man.  Saul had rebelled against God and God said, you're no longer going to be king over Israel.  Remember when Salma and her Saul was put in as King of the people no longer wanted the rule of God over them.  They said give us a man like all the other nations have that we might be like them, and God says when you give him you won't be able to handle him and they were not God warns him through his prophets that you have a king that he's gonna text you he's going to spend your money is going to live his way and you're going to live the way he says to live but they said that that's all right we will be like everybody else.  Now here's the land they chose that stood head and shoulders above everybody else probably a very flamboyant individual probably very articulate individual.  Probably a very well-liked personality and here they have him and now he's rebelled against God, and because of that, the whole nation suffered and when nation rebels and rejects the word of the Lord.  There's either repentance or God rejects us is always to think about the sin of rebellion rebellion against authority and by the way, when we rebel against authority.  We really rebelled against God because God is our ultimate authority.  The authority that we have before us this morning is the word of God: 5042 there's nothing beyond that.  We don't have anywhere to go to go to get any other truth.  We have the truth of God's word right here we have the word of God before us and so therefore we we must go to it here.  God says rebellion is is a sin of witchcraft, God says you rejected me and so I'm going to reject you authority has been lost in our nation authority has been lost in our homes.  Authority has been lost in our classrooms.  Authority has been lost and we see it on display all the time authority of those that the police us and help us some ice is not only place around me.  You will was somebody comes at you.  You want someone to help you if if somebody's trying to destroy you.  And so we find that no longer do we consider having knowledge of truth and no respect.  No longer do we consider that important question authority is taken the place of saying yes or yes ma'am.  Thank you.  That's part of.  So how many times we have seen these things play out is been concluded that our society with a leadership outside of God and away from God is a sign of society that that crumbles before your eyes.  Here's some of the things that will demolish the authority that God has given.  I have the right to make my own decisions.  No matter what anybody says or anything tells me I have my rights.  I have the right to live or choose and that is a privilege, but not to the detriment of someone else.  I should have access to all information if I want to know if I will know your personal business and out to have the right at that for Suzanne to know that that is a rebellious heart and rebellious spirit against a privacy I have here should have a physical environment.  This constructed to fit my desires that everyone of us in here this morning we have different ideas.  We have different thoughts we have different ways and we have to learn to live with each other in a peaceful way.  We could probably go around the auditorium this morning and find some ideas about certain subject that we would differ on what that's okay to differ, but we don't have to kill and destroy.  Just because it's a difference.  Now the fella got killed.  Learn Minneapolis as far as I can tell there was no reason for the here's a individual that has authority using his authority to the point of destroying that man's life in that families life.  Your go to jail will be tried at the fullest extent of the law and let the law speak, but the answer to it is not what were saying all across our country.  The answer is not destruction of somebody else, the answer is not three people getting killed in Indianapolis last night that have no help have nothing in common and nothing to do with what's taken place.  I really believe it's a a group of people that have been stirred up that hate our country anyway.  They just they would destroy us.  In a moment somebody says I'm not a conspiracy theorist.  I'm not either but I believe there's a conspiracy to go on to destroy this country and I believe the main head guy that is called the devil, the Bible says we fight principalities and powers.  That means things you cannot see we stand against wickedness and the Bible tells us that we put on the whole armor of God, and so will we see the world this morning and especially our country.  This work out which we see it crumbling before our eyes.  I made the statement I've heard others make the statement that the very fiber of our country is being destroyed.  I got thing about that even this morning early.  I woke up early and think about the messages for today and anybody that doesn't work with with Paul were made of what fiber and the fiber holes the shirt together.  The dress skirt, pants, fibers, what holds it together.  And the reason we replace shirts and the reason we replace pants or drape whatever it is the reason we replace is because the fiber gets weak as a continual process that goes all of destruction of that fiber with the fiber of our country is being destroyed is becoming weak and as Ronald Reagan said years ago.  There's nowhere else to go except America were working you go to have what we have.  There's nowhere else.  And so this morning we we must look and see the underlying problem is taking place and literally the fibers that hold this nation together.  Our little by little by little being weakened and destroyed, and before long, a fiber that is so weak it will what it will rip it will be destroyed.  The roots of rebellion.  His starts all the way back in our our history of our ancient parents called Adam and Eve.  That's what start God said do not they said we will do it continues all the process goes on to their children can enable there's destruction there.  There is rebellion there.  They changes destroys able because of rebellious heart.  It goes on and on.  All the way through the Scripture we see that a process of rebellion.  That's why we need a Savior.  Thank God we have the Lord Jesus Christ because every person that's born of woman has or has a problem is called sin problem.  We are sinners by nature that's when were born.  We have a sin nature in us, we become sinners by choice.  When we get old enough to know right and wrong, and so that is a continual process that goes on as we get older and and if that sin nature is not taken care of, then it will explode later on in life and there's no no authority that will overshadow my desires.  It's what I want no matter who it hurts, no matter who kills that's what I want.  So America this morning.  We are seeing the I believe the results of years and years and years ago of beginning to undermine and destroy the effectiveness of God in the hearts of people.  I always go back and in the process always go back to the trial years ago back in the 20s when the debate went on about evolution, that's the first underlying real destruction of the process that we are made in the image in the likeness of God.  That image has been marred by sin.  That image has been destroyed because of the nature that we have process of time goes on evolution now is if you say anything against evolution.  Now you look down upon as a is an ignorant person as Brother Sisson has said so many times behind this pool.  A lie told long enough is a line that will be believe this truth and evolution is a lie that is now believed as truth and so you do away with the process God man all of a sudden man is appearing God is out there somewhere process of time goes on, and then we decided we didn't need prayer and Bible reading in our schools and so is outlawed that same time abortion became legal that came about because of the wonderful Supreme Court that we have been.  That's why our hope is not in the Supreme Court.  Our hope is in Jesus Christ.  Every major decision that's come before the Supreme Court.  Most of them have gone against the principles of God's word, including this past Friday.  They did at the midnight hour, so the quietly put out very few people would read it until later and so we find that the rebellion has its roots is rooted with Adam and Eve when they rebelled against God.  They said were going do it our way and went on down to their children and their children's children about why were the children's children, still you just add to that were part of that were part of that that bloodline.  We are Adams children red, yellow, black or white.  That matter, we are all one race and the we have different ideas different ways.  We all came from the same place.  And God is our Creator and to snuff our life to destroy that life is in rebellion against God.  This is now shall not kill that matter if it's on the street corner with the man's knee on the neck of an individual fits in the abortion clinic or hospital takes the life of a baby this living.  No longer do we consider life very important.  It's important if it's not in my way.  Now we have have people to say that even the children that are that survived the abortion they just let them lay there and die.  How ungodly and hedonistic in America because of how much more can we go away from the Lord.  They take those babies they harvest their organs and their the skin in the tissues they sell it and they make a fortune off of it because we care not what God says no wonder we're in trouble this morning.  No wonder were in difficulty today because the heart of man is wicked.  Do away with God do well with the thought of God.  We don't have to answer to God.  We can live the way we want to live do what we want to know what you become to become like the brute beast that Peter tells us about in the New Testament walking around, he says, as brute beast.  You want some of the video was passed to three days you'll see a lot of brute beast running around this message may not be very popular but still true.  I believe it's time somebody makes statements that might help a few people to encourage us sometimes rebellion doesn't always reveal itself in a drastic way is Keynes rebellion, the sometimes more subtle and we just rebelled against God reveals itself it was to take time this morning and read these 35 verses of chapter 15 first Samuel, you'll find that God gave direction Saul had his own will and way in did what he wanted to and the he went his way and then God brought about judgment upon him defying authority Saul did that to the two fulfill his own design.  He said I've got a better way.  Now we come out thereby says we got a better book, but only what we use for your week with got better books you're going to improve on this so we find that rebellion is in the heart of man, and sometimes is there to cover up for the actions of an individual.  Saul was disqualified because of his rebellion, God says you will no longer be king.  For years I have wondered how in the world, or why you read the book of Revelation you book the book of Ezekiel and Daniel and all those books that have to do with end times.  I have always wondered where is America.  I can begin to get the answer to that.  Where is the America that we know what's happened I saw individual I forget what city was in.  He was weeping and crying and and telling the folks that was destroying his place of business is to please do not do that.  I have worked hard for that and he was a black man talking to black and white destroyers determine what coding are you have no right to destroy somebody else's property that matter who you are don't have right to destroy the livelihood of someone else and it doesn't matter if it's from the president of the governor to the elected officials will have the right to destroy people's livelihood seeing it everywhere we look, Saul was disqualified.  He asked and beg for forgiveness.  Samuel says that first.  He said I don't have anything to do with you.  Can America survive this.  I believe we can and I know I never will be a preacher of doom, but do will be a preacher of truth.  I don't think I said anything this morning that can be disqualified as not being truth rebellion in the king of Israel is no different than the rebellion of the president of America.  The rebellion of the king of Israel is no different than the rebellion in the heart of the governors of our country that are flaunting their attitude and there are against God rebellion of the king of Israel no different than the rebellion of the Chief Justice and the Supreme Court of our country.  We don't have anybody else to appeal to they've made their decision and they said it's okay to show the church down.  We have nowhere else to go except to God and maybe that's where God wants us to realize where we need to go.  He is the one that holds the heart of the king in his hand.  He is the one that has the ability to change ideas of Nebuchadnezzar.  He had a change of heart.  God put them out in the field for a few years.  Bible says his hair grew out like feathers in his nails drew out like claws when God got through with him.  Nebuchadnezzar said there's no God in heaven except the God of Daniel.  He learned the lesson they learned it the hard way.  I pray for America.  I pray for our country.  I pray for cities Madisonville Owensboro Evansville Louisville Louisville had a terrible night the other night and has nothing to do with what happened.  All they may use that as a smokescreen that I have anything to do with What Took Pl. in Minneapolis not now all it has to do now is to see the destruction for can take what I can get for myself.  See the doors broken down stores 60 inch television is being taken up that has nothing to that poor man's death, lying a police station on farm destroying it water into that deep because of the district that had nothing to do with that man's death, the burning of City Hall and the old capital building that natural had nothing to do but it does have to do with is the manifestation I can do what I want to do says rebellion is a sin of witchcraft that we can go one may take that word witchcraft what what doors open tells what rebellion really really is you and I as a believer is a Christian we have responsibilities.  We have things that we needed.  We need to know how to live in this world when you know how to survive spiritually in this world and I will have time to go into that.  So I guess I'll be tonight's message of how what we live with the end in the probably the end of times in view of our time and will go on but I believe the Lord is coming, what happy note that is a sad word.  Jesus is coming every believer in here this morning, also a mentor that Jesus is coming, he might come today when it be wonderful to guess out of all the stuff for careful and I said this before we find ourselves more interested in our disappearance and his appearance.  Lord, get me out of this all come, Lord Jesus.  That's just the result of his coming.  He gets us out this mess by we pray for the peace of Israel by we pray for the peace of our own country.  My we pray for the rejoicing of God's people and serving him until he does come in Matthew chapter 24 Luke chapter 21 all those verses Revelation chapter 4.  Five.  On all those verses tell us he's coming in our that you think not.  He's coming.  Praise the Lord this morning.  We know him.  We know him in our heart.  Do we live perfect do we live righteous all the time.  Now that we know him and he has forgiven us of our sins in our trespasses and our heart should not be filled with rebellion.  Our heart should be filled with rejoicing of who he is and what he has done for us to stand together this morning


 

(30) 5-27-2020 Wednesday Evening Service

To Listen and Download the Video Click Here

Five Prayers for Believers

James 5: 16b-18

James 5:16-18 (KJV)
16 b  pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
17  Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.
18  And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.

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COMMENTARY

The Expositors Bible - Chapter 28

 

James 5:16-18

THE connection Of this passage with the preceding one is very close. This is evident even in the Authorized Version; but it is made still more manifest by the Revisers, who have restored the connecting "therefore" to the text upon overwhelming authority. St. James is passing from the particular case of the sick person to something more general, viz., mutual confession of sins. If we draw out his thought in full it will be something of this kind: "Even if the sick person be suffering the consequences of his sins, nevertheless the faith and prayers of the elders, combined with his own, shall prevail for his forgiveness and healing. Of course he must confess and bewail his sins; if he does not admit them and repent of them, he can hope for nothing. Therefore you ought all of you habitually to confess your sins to one another, and to intercede for one another, in order that when sickness comes upon you, you may the more readily be healed." It is not quite certain that the word rendered "ye may be healed" (ἰαθῇτε) ought to be limited to bodily healing; but the context seems to imply that the cure of bodily disorders is still in the mind of St, James. If, however, with various commentators, we take it to mean "that your souls may be healed," then there is no need to supply any such thought as "when sickness comes upon you."

It might surprise us to find that the practice of auricular confession to a priest is deduced from the precept, "Confess your sins one to another," if we had not the previous experience or finding the rite of Extreme Unction deduced from the precept respecting the anointing of the sick. But here also Cajetan has the credit of admitting that no Scriptural authority for the Roman practice can be found in the words of St. James. The all-important "to one another" ἀλλήλοις) is quite fatal to the interpretation of confession to a priest. If the confession of a layman to a priest is meant, then the confession of a priest to a layman is equally meant: the words, whether in the Greek or in the English, cannot be otherwise understood. But the injunction is evidently quite general, and the distinction between clergy and laity does not enter into it at all: each Christian, whether elder or layman, is to confess to other Christians, whether elders or laymen, either to one or to many, as the case may be. When the sick person just spoken of confessed his sins, he confessed them to the elders of the Church, because they were present; they did not come to receive his confession, but to pray for him and to anoint him. He sent for them, not because he wished to confess to them, but because he was sick. Even if he had had nothing to confess to them—a case evidently contemplated by St. James as not only possible, but common—he would still have sent for them. So far from its being among their functions as elders to hear the sick man's confession, St. James seems rather to imply that he ought to have made it previously to others. If Christians habitually confess their sins to one another, there will be no special confession required when any of them falls ill. But granting that this interpretation of his brief directions is not quite certain, it is quite certain that what he commends is the confession of any Christian to any Christian, and not the confession of laity to presbyters. About that he says nothing, either one way or the other, for it is not in his mind. He neither sanctions nor forbids it, but he gives a direction which shows that as regards the duty Of confession to man, the normal condition of things is for any Christian to confess to any Christian. The important point is that the sinner should not keep his guilty secret locked up in his own bosom; to whom he should tell it is left to his own discretion. As Tertullian says, in his treatise "On Penance," "Confession of sins lightens as much as concealment (dissimulatio) aggravates them. For confession is prompted by the desire to make amends; concealment is prompted by contumacy" (8). Similarly Origen, on Psalm 37: "See, therefore, what the Divine Scripture teaches us, that we must not conceal sin within us. For just as, it may be, people who have undigested food detained inside them, or are otherwise grievously oppressed internally, if they vomit, obtain relief, so they also who have sinned, if they conceal and retain the sin, are oppressed inwardly. But if the sinner becomes his own accuser, accuses himself and confesses, he at the same time vomits out both the sin and the whole cause of his malady" ("Homil." II. 6). In much the same strain Chrysostom writes, "Sin, if it is confessed, becomes less; but if it is not confessed, worse; for if the sinner adds shamelessness and obstinacy to his sin, he will never stop. How, indeed, will such a one be at all able to guard himself from falling again into the same sins, if in the earlier case he was not conscious that he sinned... Let us not merely call ourselves sinners, but let us make a reckoning of our sins, counting them according to their kind, one by one... If thou art of the persuasion that thou art a sinner, this is not able so much to humble thy soul as the very catalogue of thy sins examined into according to their kind" ("Homil." 30, in "Ep. ad Hebr.").

All these writers have this main point in common, that a sinner who does not confess what he has done amiss is likely to become careless and hardened. And the principle is at least as old as the Book of Proverbs: "He that covereth his transgressions shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall obtain mercy" (Proverbs 28:13). But, as the context clearly shows in each case, they are each of them writing of a different kind of confession. The confession (exomologesis) which Tertullian so urgently recommends is public confession before the congregation; that which Origen advises is private confession to an individual, particularly with a view to deciding whether public confession is expedient.

What Chrysostom prefers, both here and elsewhere in his writings, is secret confession to God: "I say not to thee, Make a parade of thyself; nor yet, Accuse thyself in the presence of the others.... Before God confess these things; before the Judge ever confess thy sins, praying, if not with the tongue, at any rate with the heart, and in this way ask for mercy." All which is in accordance with the principle laid down by St. John, "If we confess our sins"—our sins in detail, not the mere fact that we have sinned—"He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9). Bellarmine has the courage to claim not only St. James, but St. John, as teaching confession to a priest ("De Paenit.," III. 4); but it is manifest that St. John is speaking of confession to God, without either approving or condemning confession to man, and that St. James is speaking of the latter, without saying anything about the former. But just as St. James leaves to the penitent's discretion the question to whom he shall confess, whether to clergy or laity, so also he leaves it to his discretion whether he shall confess to one or to many, and whether in private or in public. In the second, third, and fourth centuries public confession was commonly part of public penance. And the object of it is well stated by Hooker: "Offenders in secret" were "persuaded that if the Church did direct them in the offices of their penitency, and assist them with public prayer, they should more easily obtain that they sought than by trusting wholly to their own endeavors." The primitive view, he holds, was this: "Public confession they thought necessary by way of discipline, not private confession as in the nature of a sacrament" ("Eccl. Pol.," VI. 4:2, 6). But experience soon showed that indiscriminate public confession of grievous sin was very mischievous. Therefore, in the East, and (if Sozomen is correct) at Rome also, penitentiary presbyters were appointed to decide for penitents whether their sins must be confessed to the congregation or not. Thus, what Origen advises each penitent to do for himself, viz., seek a wise adviser respecting the expediency of public, confession and penance, was formally done for every one. But in A.D. 391, Nectarius, the predecessor of Chrysostom in the see of Constantinople, was persuaded to abolish the office, apparently because a penitentiary presbyter had sanctioned public confession m a case which caused great scandal; but neither Socrates (5, 19) nor Sozomen (VII. 16) makes this point very clear. The consequence of the abolition was that each person was left to his own discretion, and public penance fell into disuse.

But public confession had other disadvantages. Private enmity made use of these confessions to annoy, and even to prosecute the penitent. Moreover, the clergy sometimes proclaimed to the congregation what had been told them in confidence; that is, they made public confession on behalf of the sinner without his consent. Whereupon Leo the Great, in a letter to the Bishops of Apulia and Campania, March 6, A.D. 459, sanctioned the practice of private confession ("Ep." 168. [136]. Thus, in the West, as previously in the East, a severe blow was given to the practice of public confession and penance.

But it is probable that the origin, or at least the chief encouragement, of the practice of auricular confession is rather to be looked for in monasticism. Offenses against the rule of the Order had to be confessed before the whole community; anal it was assumed that the only other grave offences likely to happen in the monastic life would be those of thought. These had to be confessed in private to the abbot. The influences of monasticism were by no means bounded by the monastery walls; and it is probable that the rule of private confession by the brethren to the abbot had much to do with the custom of private confession by the laity to the priest. But it is carefully to be noted that for a considerable period the chief considerations are the penitent's admission of his sins and the fixing of the penance. Only gradually does the further idea of the absolution of the penitent by the body or the individual that hears the confession come in; and at last it becomes the main idea. Confession once a year to a priest was made compulsory by the Lateran Council in 1215; but various local synods had made similar regulations at earlier periods; e.g., the Council of Toulouse in 1129, and of Liege in 710. But when we have reached these regulations we have once more advanced very far indeed beyond what is prescribed by St. James in this Epistle. There cannot be much doubt what is the main idea with St. James: "Confess therefore your sins one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The supplication of a righteous man availeth much in its working. Elijah... prayed fervently And he prayed again," etc. It is in order that we may induce others to pray for us that we are to confess our sins to them; and this is the great motive which underlies the public confession of the primitive Church. As Hooker well expresses it, "The greatest thing which made men forward and willing upon their knees to confess whatever they had committed against God... was their fervent desire to be helped and assisted with the prayers of God's saints." And the meaning of these prayers is strikingly expressed by Tertullian, who thus addresses the penitent in need of such intercession: "Where one and two meet, there is a Church; and a Church is Christ. Therefore, when thou dost stretch forth thy hands to the knees of thy brethren, it is Christ that thou I touchest, Christ on whom thou prevailest. Just so, when they shed tears over thee, it is Christ who feels compassion, Christ who is entreating the Father. Readily doth He ever grant that which the Son requests" ("De Poenit:," 10). To unburden his own heart was one benefit of the penitent's confession; to obtain the intercession of others for his forgiveness and recovery was another; and the latter was the chief reason for confessing to man; confession to God might effect the other. The primitive forms of absolution, when confession was made to a priest, were precatory rather than declaratory. "May the Lord absolve thee" (Dominus absolvat) was changed in the West to "I absolve thee," in the twelfth century. From the Sarum Office the latter formula passed into the First Prayer Book of Edward VI, in the Visitation of the Sick, and has remained there unchanged; but in 1552 the concluding words of the preceding rubric, "and the same forme of absolucion shall be used in all pryvate confessions," were omitted. In the Greek Church the form of absolution after private confession is precatory:—

"O my spiritual child, who dost confess to my humility, I, a humble sinner, have no power on I earth to remit sins. This God alone can do. Yet by reason of that Divine charge which was committed to the Apostles after the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, in the words, Whosesoever sins ye forgive, etc., and by that encouraged, we say, Whatsoever thou hast confessed to my most lowly humility, and whatsoever thou hast omitted to confess, either through ignorance or any forgetfulness, may God forgive thee, both in this world and in that which is to come." And this is followed by a prayer very similar to the absolution: "God... forgive thee, by the ministry of me a sinner, all thy sins, both in this world and in that which is to come, and present thee blameless at His dread tribunal. Go in peace, and think no more of the faults which thou hast confessed." The "we say" holds fast to the doctrine that it is to the Church as a whole, and not to Peter or any individual minister that the words, "Whosesoever sins ye forgive, they are forgiven unto them" (John 20:23), were spoken.

"The supplication of a righteous man availeth much in its working." "The effectual earnest prayer" of the Authorized Version cannot be justified: either "effectual" or "earnest" must be struck out, as there is only one word (ἐνεργουμένη) in the original; moreover, the word for "prayer" is not the same as before (δέησις, not εὐχή). But it may be doubted whether "earnest" is not better than "in its working." Perhaps "in its earnestness" would be better than either: "Great is the strength of a righteous man's supplication, in its earnestness."

The example by which St. James proves the efficacy of a righteous man's prayer is interesting and important in two respects:—

1. It is the only evidence that we have that the great drought in the time of Ahab was prayed for by Elijah, and it is the only direct evidence that he prayed for the rain which put an end to it. We are told that Elijah prophesied the drought (1 Kings 17:1) and the rain (1 Kings 18:41); and that before the rain he put himself in an attitude of prayer, with his face between his knees (ver. 42); but that he prayed, and for the rain which he had foretold, is not stated. Whether the statement made by St. James is an inference from these statements, or based on independent tradition, must remain uncertain. We read in Ecclesiasticus of Elijah that by "the word of the Lord he shut up (held b.c.), the heaven" (48:3); but that seems to refer to prophecy rather than to prayer. The difference, if there be any, between the duration of the drought as stated here and by St. Luke (Luke 4:25), and as stated in the Book of the Kings, will not be a stumbling-block to any who recognize that inspiration does not necessarily make a man infallible in chronology. Three and a half years (=42 months= 1,260 days) was the traditional duration of times of great calamity (Daniel 7:25; 12:7; Revelation 11:2, 3; 12:6, 14; 13:5).

2. This passage supplies us with Biblical authority for prayers for changes of weather, and the like; for the conduct of Elijah is evidently put before us for our imitation. St. James carefully guards against the objection that Elijah was a man gifted with miraculous powers, and therefore no guide for ordinary people, by asserting that he was a man of like nature (ὁμοιοπαθής) with ourselves. And let us concede, for the sake of argument, that St. James may have been mistaken in believing that Elijah prayed for the drought and for the rain; yet still the fact remains that an inspired New Testament writer puts before us, for our encouragement in prayer, a case in which prayers for changes of weather were made and answered. And he certainly exhorts us to pray for the recovery of the sick, which is an analogous case. This kind of prayer seems to require special consideration.

"Is it, then, according to the Divine will that when we are individually suffering from the regularity of the course of nature—suffering, for instance, from the want of rain, or the superabundance of it—we should ask God to interfere with that regularity? That in such circumstances we should pray for submission to the Divine will, and for such wisdom as shall lead to compliance with it in the future, is a matter of course, and results inevitably from the relation between the spiritual Father and the spiritual child. But ought we to go farther than this? Ought we to pray, expecting that our prayer will be effectual, that God may interfere with the fixed sequences of nature? Let us try to realize what Would follow if we offered such prayer and prevailed. In a world-wide Church each believer would constitute himself a judge of what was best for himself and his neighbor, and thus the order of the world would be at the mercy everywhere of individual caprice and ignorance. Irregularity would accordingly take the place of invariableness. No man could possibly foretell what would be on the morrow. The scientist would find all his researches for rule and law baffled; the agriculturist would find all his calculations upset; nature, again, as in the days of ignorance, would become the master of man; like an eagle transfixed by an arrow winged by one of its own feathers, man would have shackled himself with the chains of his ancient servitude by the licentious employment of his own freedom, and would have reduced the cosmos of which God made him the master to a chaos which overwhelmed him by its unexpected blows."

The picture which is here drawn sketches for us the consequences of allowing each individual to have control over the forces of nature. It is incredible that God could be induced to allow such control to individuals; but does it follow from this that he never listens to prayers respecting His direction of the forces of nature, and that consequently all such prayers are presumptuous? The conclusion does not seem to follow from the premises, The valid conclusion would rather be this: No one ought to pray to God to give him absolute control of the forces of nature. The prayer, "Lord, in Thy control of the forces of nature have mercy upon me and my fellow-men," is a prayer of a very different character.

The objection to prayers for rain or for the cessation of rain, and the like, is based on the supposition that we thereby "ask God to interfere with the regularity of the course of nature." Yet it is admitted that to "pray for submission to the Divine will, and for such wisdom as will lead to compliance with it in the future, is a matter of course and results inevitably from the relation between the spiritual Father and the spiritual child." But is there no regularity about the things thus admitted to befit objects of prayer? Are human character and human intellect not subject to law? When we pray for a submissive spirit and for wisdom, are we not asking God to "interfere with that regularity" which governs the development of character and of intelligence? Either the prayer is to obtain more submission or more wisdom than we should otherwise get, or it is not. If it is to obtain it, then the regularity which would otherwise have prevailed is interrupted. If our prayer is not to obtain for us more submission and more wisdom than we should have obtained if we had not prayed, then the prayer is futile.

It will perhaps be urged that the two cases are not strictly parallel. They are not; but for the purposes of this argument they are sufficiently parallel. It is maintained that we have no right to pray for rain, because we thereby propose to interfere with the regularity of natural processes; yet it is allowed that we may pray for wisdom. To get wisdom by prayer is quite as much an interference with the regularity of natural processes as to get rain by prayer. Therefore, either we ought to pray for neither, or we have the right to pray for both. And so far as the two cases are not parallel, it seems to be more reasonable to pray for rain than to pray for submissiveness and wisdom. God has given our wills the awful power of being able to resist His will. Are we to suppose that He exercises less control over matter, which cannot resist Him, than over human wills, which He allows to do so; or that He will help us or not help us to become better and wiser, according as we ask Him or do not ask Him for such help, and yet will never make any change as to giving or withholding material blessings, however much, or however little, we may ask Him to do this?

The objection is sometimes stated in a slightly different form. God has arranged the material universe according to His infinite wisdom; it is presumptuous to pray that He will make any change in it. The answer to which is that, if that argument is valid against praying for rain, it is valid against all prayer whatever. If I impugn infinite wisdom when I pray for a change in the weather, do I not equally impugn it, when I pray for a change in the life or character of myself or of my friends? God knows without our asking what weather is best for us; and He knows equally without our asking what spiritual graces are best for us.

Does not the parallel difficulty point to a parallel solution? What right have we to assume that in either case effectual prayer interferes with the regularity which seems to characterize Divine action? May it not be God's will that the prayer of faith should be a force that can influence other forces, whether material or spiritual, and that its influence should be according to law (whether natural or supernatural) quite as much as the influence of other forces? A man who puts up a lightning-conductor brings down the electric current when it might otherwise have remained above, and brings it down in one place rather than another; yet no one would say that he interferes With the regularity of the course of nature. Is there anything in religion or science to forbid us from thinking of prayer as working in an analogous manner—according to a law too subtle for us to comprehend and analyze, but according to a law none the less? In the vast network of forces in which an all-wise God has constructed the universe a Christian will believe that one force which "availeth much," both in the material and in the spiritual world, "is the earnest prayer of the righteous. It is better for us that we should be able to influence by our prayers God's direction of events than that we should be unable to do so; therefore a merciful Father has placed this power within our reach.

The Expositor's Bible - The General Epistles of St. James and St. Jude.

(29B) 5-24-2020 Sunday PM, GBC Sunday Evening Message

Click Here if You Want Only the Audio to Listen to

Where I Was - Where I Am

Psalm 40:1-3

by Bro. Lawrence Richardson, 33 min. length

Psalm 40:1-3, The Benefits of Confidence in God

A Psalm of David

Psalm 40:1-3 (KJV)
1  I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.
2  He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.
3  And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.

COMMENTARY BY J. Verson McGee

If you don't like the green text please let Bro. Richardson know and I will change it to, blue, black, or whatever you like.

THEME: A messianic psalm predicting the crucifixion of Christ

Two messianic Psalms (Ps. 40 and Ps. 41) conclude the Genesis section of the Psalms. They are called messianic psalms because they are so quoted in the New Testament, which makes them especially important.

I waited patiently for the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry [Ps. 40:1].

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

This is a proper psalm to follow Psalm 39. All of these psalms go together; that is, you will note a continuity. There are those who feel that this psalm expresses the experience of David in his flight from Absalom, and that is accurate to a point. But this psalm is quoted in the Epistle to the Hebrews in a most remarkable way. In this psalm the One who celebrates in praise and thanksgiving the Resurrection, the triumph and Ascension is the Lord Jesus Himself. This is truly a messianic psalm. It reveals that the death of Christ was not a defeat at all. It was a great victory. When He says, "I waited patiently for the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry," He is referring to His cry from the cross.

He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings [Ps. 40:2].

Christ's agony and death is likened to a horrible pit, a pit of destruction. We cannot conceive how terrible the death of Christ on the cross really was.

And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord [Ps. 40:3].

This verse mentions a new song -- we have read about a new song before -- it is the song of redemption.

"Many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord." What are they going to see? They will see the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

 

OUTLINE OF THIS EVENINGS MESSAGE

If you want a copy of the outline of the message by Bro. Richardson, click on the above and download it. It is in MS Word, .doc

Where I Was, Where I Am, Ps. 40:1-3

The Sinner’s State --- In A Horrible pit

    1. Separated

    2. Darkness

    3. Despair

    4. Death

 

  1. The Sinner’s Savior --- He Brought Me Up—Miry Clay

    1. Sinful past

    2. Curse of the law

    3. Hell

  1. The Saints Security --- Set my feet on solid Rock

    1. Safe place

    2. Shielded place

    3. Secure place

 

  1. The Saints Steps --- Established my goings

    1. Lead by the Spirit

    2. Steps to follow Christ

    3. Children of Light

  1. The Saints Song --- A new song in my mouth

    1. A song of redemption

    2. A song of victory

    3. Song of rejoicing

 

  1. The Saints Service --- praise unto our God

    1. Praise for His love

    2. Praise for His mercy

    3. Praise for His Forgiveness

  1. The Saints Standing --- many shall see it and trust the Lord

    1. Be a witness to the world

    2. Be a light

    3. Be an epistle      

5-24-2020 pm Sunday Evening Church Service.

This is a computer generated transcript of Bro. Richardson's message this evening. It has not yet been edited. Hower, I would estimate it is about 90% accurate.

 


CLICK HERE TO READ THE MESSAGE IN WORD

If you would take your Bibles and turn with me to the book of Psalms, Psalms number 40 and I want to read the first three verses of the Psalm, and this will be primarily were we will spend our time. We will not be turning to any other Scriptures tonight or very few if any. This Psal is a Psalm of David.  When we think of Psalms we think of David being the human author, but most of them and he was but not all of them, but many of them have his name at the very top and so we have no no problem knowing who wrote this, and he was inspired of the Lord to write this, and we must remember that these Psalms were at one time the emblem for the Jews as they went into their synagogues into the temple to worship the Lord.  This was their their time of being together and using these Psalms as their eyes, their songs we have songbook and I had a songbook and never had a book of the Psalms that was used there in their service and honor and presence of the Lord.  David writes here in verse number one Psalm number 40.  I waited patiently for the Lord and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.  He brought me up also have an horrible pit at the bar a claim set my feet upon a rock and established my goings to put a new song in my mouth even praise unto our God.  Many shall see in figure and shall trust in the Lord would just read the three verses that was his universal voice as I waited patiently for the Lord and the sometimes of the Lord does.  The trial patient.  Sometimes he wants us to realize that the he doesn't move it on our timescale.  He doesn't move at the speed that we sometimes wish he would.  But this many times we have decided to wait patiently for him that we understand and realize that as we wait for him when he gives us the gives us the answer will be the right answer be the correct answer.  As we mentioned this morning.  There are so many problems in our nation are so many problems around this country and we may just have to wait patiently to see how the Lord works all these things out we hear different things happening in different areas hear the hear the reports from different states and the things that are going on, and much of it is not.  Not good.  And so you and I as a believer to die.  We must learn to depend upon the Lord, but in these verses, verse, especially verse two with three we find here that David gives a gives a testimony of what the Lord had done for him.  As I read these verses, I thought about these verses tell us where we have been and tell us what we are is all about the grace of the Lord.  Do not deny we are what we are by God's mercy and grace, his mercy was shown upon us and them.  Therefore, his grace is poured out upon us.  He gave us the ability to hear the word of God at the hear the message of salvation and gave us the wonderful gift of faith to believe and I got deny we can believe upon him and trust him with everything in our heart everything in our soul that we can depend upon the Lord Jesus Christ.  If he can take me from where I was thinking take you from where you were and take you where you are right now and then think we know where were going that we can depend upon everything he tells us everything he gives to us through our heels, almost look tonight in these primary these two verses.  Let's read them again and they will go back and break them down.  He brought me up also horrible pit out of a miry clay and set my feet upon a rock and established my goings to put a new song in my mouth even praise unto our God.  Many shall see it and figure and shall trust in the Lord.  Many shall see.  Many shall figure and many shall trust in the Lord everything the Lord does, he does for reasons everything God does in your life.  Everything God does in my life.  He does it for purposes for reason and primarily that we could tell somebody and show someone that we are a believer in Christ that we serve him so therefore he can give his own testimony to them.  Through our through our life and the ways that we have the he is given unto us.  Psalms to look tonight and we were and where we are and I think we find it in these two verses.  First of all, we were in a terrible terrible condition.  The sinner should state the condition of the individual that knows not God gives us hear these words horrible it really Scriptures.  There are those that have been throwing tents and those have been cast in dungeons and David uses these words to her to show us that where he was and and we can look at it and know that's where we were as unbeliever before we came to know the Lord.  We were in a horrible.  I cannot dig out of it you can buy your way out of it.  You can't do anything to get out of it.  Other than trust the Lord other than believable the Lord Jesus Christ.  This kid is a place of separation the world out there today that we are looking at and watching ago which Mary way and do its thing.  There, they do not realize it, but the real horrible.  There, in a in a rut that cannot ever be askew escaped and there in that place of unbelief and a place that is a denying the very sometimes the very existence of the Lord Jesus Christ.  This horrible pit is not only a place of separation, but is also a place of darkness.  I would rather not too long ago a few weeks ago about Jesus is the life and in him is no darkness at all.  Thank God he is the light of the world and man.  The Bible say to stay in their condition by saying this horrible pit because I loved darkness rather than my and so this David said I was in a horrible pit and he said I was separated from the Lord is in place of darkness, not on that at this place, a dead man individual dies without the Lord laid out at second death without God spend eternity without the Lord, and there is the real separation between God and man as wicked as this world is he still has the influence of the Holy Spirit as wicked as people are today as woeful as they are against the things that we still have the influence of the word of God and the work of God.  We still have the influence of the Lord Jesus Christ withholding and with straining the wickedness.  Can you imagine what this world would be like the Holy Spirit did not with string.  If he was not the one that drew back and held back the other powers of darkness, and the power to fail and that will bring forth in the tribulation time when the spirit of God moved as far as his restraining effort upon this world is will David said I incline my ear to the Lord and he said I waited patiently for him and he brought me out of the harbor.  I got deny you and other believers we could testify.  This afternoon we go around all torment people to tell us each other back of the day you got say the day that the Lord broke upon your heart and broken your soul and made you realize that you were in horrible.  That you were separated from the Lord that you have no way of getting to the Lord.  There's no ladder to climb as though Saul might tell us there's no ladder to heaven.  There's no real way to heaven.  There's only the real way unless the Lord Jesus Christ and so we find ourselves where we were horrible.  Terrible condition.  Those folks that we hear about and read about even have news reports on the wickedness of how they are working so hard against the churches of our country.  They don't realize it, but there horrible.  They don't realize it but are separated from God.  They maybe did not realize it was there in darkness like I may factor in the life I might like to have the physical eye, but spiritually they have no light, and they dined the condition of the living and they'll be in eternal darkness forever and forever without God.  And so David says here.  I waited for the Lord.  I waited patiently for the Lord and he heard my cry and he brought me out of the horrible.  There's the state of the sinner.  There's the condition of an individual before they come to know and meet the Lord Jesus Christ.  Not only is that his stated his condition.  Thank God we have a Savior.  Everyone was in here tonight is been boreal.  We have a Savior and we can identify him.  We can name him, his name is Jesus Christ the son of God.  And so tonight we we realize that he is even brought me up.  David said I do it myself.  David had every powerful means in his in his possession.  David could've done what he wanted to.  He was the king of the great nation of Israel.  He was probably the greatest king that Israel has ever had.  Other than one day Jesus will be there came but here Jesus is the son of David Hill set upon the throne of David and in the millennial kingdom of the Lord.  And so David said he he set me up or he brought me up Alan miry clay sinking down going father and father and father away from God, your world, which were living is not getting closer to the Lord.  We can look around and understand and know for sure that the world is not getting better.  The world is going father from God all the time were horrible.  They were sinking in the mire and the murder of the other.  That is their around the world and is lost and so we have a Savior of the state is that we are lost.  Thank you so you tonight and were here not because we met the Lord I will hear tonight is a believer will be selling your home for the work a setting hearing acuity.  We have a Savior.  If we know the Lord Jesus Christ in a personal relationship that we have with him.  He brought us out of Mountlake.  What it really means here.  He brought out.  He brought me think he lifted us up.  He said to set our feet solidly upon the rock of the Lord Jesus Christ will look at that in this law we have a Savior will have just a good friend and he is a friend that sticks closer than a brother that I have Savior.  I have one that delivered me.  You have one that delivered you.  We all have our families that would do anything for us and we would do anything for families.  I we have our friends but we as a Christian I we have a Savior and he did everything for us.  He did everything that was possible try.  We can know the know him as our Lord.  He died upon the cross of Calvary that we might have life through his name and so David says.  I waited for him maybe didn't speak as quickly as David wanted to but he said I waited patiently and he heard my cry I got one night he heard my cry.  One day he heard your cry, whatever that crime out of the not too much about what the world calls the sinners prayer.  I think every sinner has their own way of coming to the Lord and trusting the Lord and calling upon the Lord because viruses if we call upon you by God, he will hear us and when he hears her speak… Alan miry clay… And that it of destruction that that period of death and despair and darkness.  Almost like we mentioned, he lifted us up because he's on the liver is our Savior and he is only one that could do that for not only media for you dollar for you and I did for the world and he did for everyone that will believe upon him and trust him.  I'm glad thank God that grace becomes effective when we believe upon him and God gives us the ability to trust and believe in call upon you as our salvation is nothing of us all him.  He brought us up.  He did the work he gave us life eternal.  That's where I was.  I was there.  That's where you were.  And now he has become our Savior, then the Bible says next thing in this these verses is that he set my feet upon a rock that will stand rock gives us the of the belief or that the knowledge that there is a foundation.  I'm glad he's back foundation.  I'm well I can build up all the Lord Jesus Christ.  The New Testament gives us a man that builds up all the sand and man that builds upon rock.  We know the story that one that built up all the sand.  The waves came in the difficulties of life came in the storm came to his house that he built and if you fail, but the one that was built upon the rock.  I got it stood united I will build our fee to be established upon the rock of the Lord Jesus Christ.  He is our security that the Scripture tells us that he is our safe place.  I we go to him in time of trouble when nobody else understands when nobody else.  Nobody else cares.  Thank God he cares when nobody else gives you any idea of help to us think we can go to him because he is our rock is the rock of our salvation is that solidly sees that cyclase is a secure place the rock the Boulder Lord Jesus Christ will shake under the problems of this world, I got is steadfast and sure you're not and I will build upon him.  The Bible tells us what Jesus talked to Peter.  And Peter was asked about who men said that the Lord was and that he call off a lot of different names and a little of the Lord said to people who do you say that I am a said, thou art that the son of God and Jesus gives to Peter the understanding that that's not something that comes from mankind that comes as a gift from God and he says upon this rock I will build my church as less troubles were around nine this country around the world about the church will take what is built.  If the right kind is built upon the word of God is right kind of church and you rest assured that the gates of hell shall not prevail against the gates of wickedness shall not prevail LMA come against us.  The struggles will be there.  Struggles may be there with the novel prevailed are not total when I get a wild one day God will take us out of this world that he will take his people out of this world and will be with him and then this will be under horrible.  And they all live to regret everything they said everything idea against the Lord Jesus Christ that we have security because were only a secure foundation.  That foundation is none other than the Lord Jesus Christ.  He is our rock is our hope and we can build upon him, and we can have the other knowledge that what we do will last forever and forever.  The things I do down here the things you do down here will deteriorate will decay everything we build will be destroyed everything that we build will decay and it will.  Where have all those $50,000 vehicles that we buy one day will bring down there where the homes that we build in bad bar are multiples of dollars.  One day they will deteriorate in the fall.  But if we build our life to the Lord Jesus Christ by God he's our standard.  He's our foundation.  He is the one that will help us.  So where was I was in a horrible.  Well, here it is toward heaven, but in between.  I have Savior.  I have security now as a as a believer as a Christian I there are some things some steps that we have that should be the steps of a Christian Bible says here in these verses.  He set my feet upon a solid rock.  And there is says established my goings my pathway the way the wall where the wall in the pathway of life living for him.  The steps are ordered by the Lord steps are given and instructions are given to us that we live for the Lord Jesus Christ and it's by the Holy Spirit of God were to follow the commands are given in the word of God and we fall short of that we certainly do not keep all of them but we gotta keep the things that God gives to us that we have the ability to serve him and honor him because of being faithful what he's done for me being thankful for how he is delivered me see that horrible closing all him was will destroy him.  Work obstruction is like a God deliveryman that put his feet on solid rock.  And then as he walks in this life.  Pathway of life, he establishes are going.  We follow the steps of the Lord Jesus Christ with all the steps of the line with all the life that is before us.  And so tonight we find that there was a place that I used to be, but now there's a place that I am and there is a place that I shall be as the past, the present and the future for the child of God, and obligate all is given to us here in in these verses and so tonight he says he brought me a set and now he establishes me he gives me line gives me energy.  He gives me ability to live and serve the Lord Jesus Christ in our flesh.  We are weak and frail.  I got in his spirit.  We have the ability to follow and to do those things that were pleasing on him.  We are saved and saved or satisfied in the Lord Jesus Christ.  We are going.  We have gone from being a sinner.  Now we are saying.  By the way, he became a safe site when you got say some of the leopard after site and some of them have put words that that you will a good person.  A good individual that the site is assigned to someone that's been born again by the spirit of God.  We are children of God.  We are the saints of the Lord Jesus Christ.  What is going together so that's what Shelby that's what is yet to in the future.  So he's establishes are going.  He brought us up and he took us out of the miry clay a centerfielder solid rock establishment goings and then he says here you put a new song in my Masters.  The song of the site.  Some some sites can sing pretty well someplace to make a joyful noise and that's okay is the song that is in her heart since I had surgery on my neck.  I have a real problem saying I believe that probably bother me as much they think sometimes I can do pretty good sometimes.  I had only one here myself but we have Saul in our heart we have joy and arsenal.  I we have a understanding that he is given us something that can never be taken away from us from us.  And David said not only establish by going to want going I can rejoice in the Lord.  I can say he's put a new song in my mail.  It's a song of redemption everywhere.  Believer goes, you can tell someone I'm a believer everywhere that you go as a Christian you can sing the song I am redeemed saved by the blood of the crucified one amazing grace, how sweet the sale that saved a wretch like me explain God.  He puts us all in our heart and a song, or mail a song of redemption.  We have been born again we have been redeemed out of this whole world of sin, we been redeemed out of the marketplace.  We been redeemed out of the horrible we been established and are going to now as we go.  We can sing the praises of the Lord Jesus Christ to everyone we meet.  Thank God we are saved.  What a great biblical word salvation is to be say I was a lot of different words that give us the same meaning, but that's a good biblical word that we been saying savings will change site we been redeemed would be involved were no longer are always been bought with a price.  That price was the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ and so David said.  He established my step, but now he's given me a song in my mouth is given me, rejoicing in my soul because when you see what you were where you were going, we can help her sing the praises of the Lord, you can't help but rejoice in what the Lord has done for us it's a song of redemption is a solid victory.  Where was all our Schaumburg victory in Jesus.  Thank God we have victory in the Lord Jesus Christ is not in what we have said what he has given to us is a song of literature.  Some of his beloved, if you look in the book of Isaiah chapter 5 verse number one of the Lord talks about his well beloved vineyard, and we have the song of the beloved one, Jesus Christ read the book of the song of Solomon and Solomon is rejoicing the love of his bride, and that depicts the other rejoicing of the Lord to his bride, which is the church of Jesus Christ.  And so when I we we have been horrible.  The Lord brought us out of there.  He's clean this up he's made us a new creature in Christ by way you don't clean up to get saved you get saved, they get cleaned up.  If you clean yourself up and you have something to do about your own salvation.  The Lord does all the work does all the cleaning he puts our field solid rock, and we can rejoice in him, knowing that any shot without that when we leave this world.  We have a home in heaven as weak and frail and sometimes simple as we are.  We can have a hope in our heart and life that we know what were going because he has put a song in our heart, he is given the steps to our faith.  I he is given a security tour so I he's given us a Savior that have brought us out of the lost ungodly condition new song in my mouth I can sing.  I've been redeemed American sing dissolves all the rejoicing you look through the book of Psalms in these songs of the Hebrews they were many of them were some rejoicing and I would say those together.  The Hebrew hymn book and I would rejoice in what the Lord had done for them and you and I do not have the same privilege of rejoicing in the Lord and having a song in our heart and expressing the gratitude of the Lord of what he's done for us.  I wasn't up yet but I got them, a place of solid foundation about a place of rejoicing inhale and then we praise our God of that next part of verse number of verse number three says the new song in our mouth even praise toward God difference in singing and praising some some door to make a difference in that but that we can saying we can rejoice that there is a time when we just get along with God, we praise the Lord for what he's done for us.  It might be a song.  Sometimes the Lord will maybe give us all that we can price it may just be an attitude of rejoicing in the Lord of our heart have good he has been to us tonight if we would just like for moment.  I think someone said this morning just was thankful how good the Lord had been.  I'm glad and that we can say he's good to us.  He is honored us with his with his son sons honored us with his life and he's just good to us.  Pass asked the question on anybody have any complaint against what the Lord is ever done for the ruler will be any complaints because he's always done right is always been righteous, I can he's complaining is Leo yes many many times.  But on my my hope of rejoicing in my Psalms of praise my songs of rejoicing in him is because of what he has given me in the blessing that I have a life and now I can serve you with the praises under God, we praise his love.  Thank God, the love of God that is manifest to this world.  The world United rejects him and turns her back appointment.  I think he still shows his love for God so loved the world, not just the world of believers.  He loved the world he loved every individual is ever been born that is born and shall be bought for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son.  Thank God the only son that God had his Jesus Christ and he gave his only begotten very unique individual.  The word begotten that means unique is no one like Jesus and God gave his son and his son did what he gave us life, he gave us liberty, and the Lord Jesus Christ.  So my services because of his love for his mercy the mercy of the Lord.  If it was not for his mercy, we would all be headed toward him if it was not for his forgiveness and his grace will always edit at the devils devils help we deserve to be ever made for a for mankind is made for the devil and his angels, but mankind rejects the love of God rejects the will and willingness of the Lord, love us, so therefore men die without God, I'm glad not.  I can have praise of my heart for the love of God for his mercy upon me, his mercy upon you is forgiveness to each of us.  He has forgiven us.  Were not were far from being perfect.  One day we shall be the foregoing, where we are right now were in living under the grace of the umbrella of the grace of God and to God be the glory he has forgiven us of our sins and are trespasses.  Notice the last part of verse number three.  Many shall see it and fear, and shall trust the Lord.  That's our testimony that's where God has taken us.  That's where the Lord has moved us through that people can see what God has done for us.  The site becomes the reflection of the true light were not polite, we are reflection of the light, we have a light that were to shine in this world of darkness this world do not even realize it.  This world so far.  What were the only life they have with only a way they have of ever coming to truth is I can.  Some people have I gone too far are some so wicked that you never know the Lord know I'm glad I'm glad the Bible tells us that God is not willing that any would perish but that all would come to repentance are faith in the Lord Jesus Christ will likely that I do not know but I have a obligation to the Lord and to them to tell them that there is truth.  As the battle rages in our country and churches are being threatened and some of them are really being threatened.  Who knows what the Lord will do with that because the church has light, the church has believers that trust the Lord and and I will follow the dictates of the heart.  As I said this morning ugly.  Today's very important date that churches should be open today and look forward to dislike they always have.  That's our right as a believer.  That's our right as a Christian.  That's our right as an American, but you and I and I we have the responsibility of showing forth the love of the Lord Jesus Christ, even to those that do not love us.  We are the reflection of the true light which is Jesus Christ.  And we are an epistle or we don't write down the book we don't write down epistle that we are that living epistle to the people around us that we hope and pray that they would see Jesus living in a some things about the Lord's attributes of the Lord, that would be my heart in your heart and your soul, and that people could come to know Christ to realize that and I got something I don't have anything of something different.  I pray tonight that we would realize we were we were horrible.  Where are we today by God as a Christian we are delivered.  We are saved we are satisfied in the Lord were we going share in the future could be denied.  I pray would be applicable to praise John will allow Pam's even so, Lord Jesus, and look forward to the blessed appearance of our Lord in glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.  That is talked about in the book of Titus and that we are to look for his appearing.  That's where we shall be.  It doesn't matter what this world does not have.  That's the that's the satisfaction that only God can give.  It doesn't matter what friends, family, folks like about it were truly saved.  Were going to heaven.  Thank God tonight.  That's where we are.  We were in a bad place and think I would want a wonderful place call glory by God help us tonight to share for the light to give forth that gospel to realize that there the world is what it does.  The lost people do what they do because it's the nature and sometimes we try to clean up the world and the southern nature to be cleaned up.  Opening the claims them as shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, and through that to have life and become a new creature just like we and they learn to live and to grow establish the going the field of solid rock song in your heart and heaven as a whole by God help us tonight to have that attitude in this world which we live to stand together tonight.  Scott's blessings

 


(31) 5-24-2020 Sunday AM, GBC Morning Message

The Marks of the Lord Jesus

Acts 4:13 & Galatians 6:17

by Bro. Lawrence Richardson, 38 min length

Acts 4:13 (KJV)
13  Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.

"Unlearned and ignorant" -- that is, these men hadn't been to a theological seminary. But the Sanhedrin noted that they had been with Jesus. How wonderful to have a life that somehow or other calls attention to Jesus!
Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

Galatians 6:17-18 (KJV)
17  From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.
18  Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

Now we come to the third and final handwriting presented to us in this section.

And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.

From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus [Gal. 6:16-17].

Notice the word marks. Paul is saying, "I bear in my body the 'marks'" -- the Greek word is stigmata -- meaning 'scar marks.' If you want to see the handwriting of Jesus, look upon Paul's body. In 2Corinthians 11:23-27 he tells us, "Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft. Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness." The stigmata were the sufferings of Paul which he endured for the sake of the Lord Jesus.

In Paul's day stigmata was used in three ways. When a runaway slave was found and brought back to his master, he was branded on the forehead. Also soldiers who belonged to famous companies had the names of their commanders tattooed on their foreheads. Then, too, devotees of a pagan goddess (and there was much of this in Asia Minor and throughout the Roman Empire in Paul's day) had her name branded on their foreheads. Paul says, "I have on my body the stigmata of the Lord Jesus." He is saying this in effect, "I have written to you out of deep emotion and with great conviction. If you want to know if I truly believe what I have written and if these things are real in my own life, read my body -- look at my scars."

I lived as a boy in west Texas before there were many fences, and we used to identify cattle by the brand of their owner. My friend, circumcision costs you nothing. It is only an outward sign. Paul says it is nothing, although he himself had been circumcised. But he bore the brand marks of the Lord Jesus upon his body and upon his life. I believe that in our day the Lord Jesus still stoops to write, not upon the shifting sands of the temple floor, but he writes upon the lives of those who are His own. His branding iron is on our hearts for eternity. Do we proudly wear His stigmata, willing to bear reproach for Jesus' sake?

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

 

Romans 8:31 (KJV)
31  What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

"What shall we then say to these things?" My answer is, "What can I say? This is so wonderful I have nothing to add!"

"Who can be against us?" God is on our side. Nobody will be able to bring a charge against us in His presence.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

 

Romans 8:35 (KJV)
35  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

He mentions everything imaginable here.

Is it possible that "tribulation" or trouble can separate us? No, my friend, because He won't let it. "Distress or anguish?" Oh, you may think God has let you down, but He hasn't. "Persecution" -- and this means legal persecution. It means there are those who will carry on a campaign against you. But that will not separate you from the love of Christ. "Or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?" By the way, this is a brief biography of Paul's life. He knows from experience that these will not separate you from Christ's love.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.

TRANSCRIPTION OF MESSAGE

May 24, 2929 AM. Grace Baptist Church Morning Service with Bro. Lawrence Richardson

The Message this morning is: The Marks of the Lord Jesus

Bible references used:  Acts 4:13; Galatians 6:17; Romans 8:31,  Romans 8:35

This transcript is produced using Nuance Dragan V15.3 transcribing software.  It has not yet been edited.  I believe it is about 90% accurate as is.  Later, time allowing, I will edit it.  Thanks

 

This morning if you would take your Bibles and I'll announce the verse that were going to read acts chapter 4 and verse number 13. Acts chapter 4 and verse number 13 and also if you will find it will be in Galatians chapter 6 score read a few verses to begin with. When we get to that that point but will just turn their will make some of these remarks this morning. I believe that America has entered into a very new and different, and dangerous stage of our history, the America that we see this morning is nothing like it was four months ago the country that we live in. That has had the wonderful freedoms that we've had all these many years is experiencing some things that I we have never experienced in the last 10 to 12 maybe 14 weeks. We have seen personal freedoms be lost when they can tell you where you can go when you can go and what you can do than some your freedoms are being dwindled away not only personal freedoms but religious freedoms when you can shirt shut down church and make people fearful of even being around people that were losing some of those freedoms that we have held dear in our life. All of our life and you'll find that down through history, personal freedom and religious freedom go hand in hand if you lose one freedom you're going to lose part of the other, either. Either way, and so on. These past few weeks we've we've seen. I spend so, but we are seeing things dwindle away as far as our freedom as Americans by the way, we still do have a Constitution. I wish somebody would would use it every once in a while on the behalf of the people of America. And when you have powers that be that will shut down the country. Your freedoms are leaving when you have powers that continue that you cannot go to church. Your freedoms are leaving and when those same powers limit your life freedoms basically are God and so we are experiencing some things in our country that we have never experienced before. I think God that this week is Friday that to our president made it very clear that churches were essential thank God. Churches are essential. The people of God, gathering together is a part of life for the child of God and the he made it very clear that he wanted the church is open now I listen to his statement through four times and I really enjoyed hearing the word. Now you put off two or three weeks then put off for a month, but he made the statement that this Sunday by weight. This is the Sunday now we are facing a battle that we have never faced before we have all we have a president that is either loved or hated. There's no in between ground and it's so strange that the liberal crowd for years have yelled long and hard about separation of church and state, and now they have done away with that. You don't hear that anymore because they're wanting to control what the church does well. The reason America is here this morning is because we left that kind of tyranny. Great Britain hundreds of years ago, the church, the state church was just dead what the government told doing and I read an article yesterday that there's I forget now where was that one place that that were not going to open any churches until they conform to what we say. They should be. Now that becomes a state run church. Now we may not understand the seriousness of that. But you take a few years of that taking place and there will be no congregations meeting like we are having such very very serious and very dangerous. The liberals also say that we need to be tolerant of each other that works until we disagree with them when they're not tolerant with us and so we see the thinking that the circular thinking of the liberal that it's it's all our fault. You going Walmart. I was at Walmart yesterday and there's a lady in there and I heard her talking about she met one of her friends. She said you're going the wrong way and this I and course they they laughed about it, but she was not getting on her. Of course you go to Walmart you got heirs tell you which way to turn which way to go and this was that they met each other and she just sort of jokingly say you're going the wrong way and she said will I just met somebody just a while ago that just almost stared me down because I was going the wrong way and we have instituted in this country, a fear that did not used to be there. I didn't used to fear anybody talking to me or being around me and and so we are seeing our country manipulated to where we do not trust and that we will as our governor asked us to do. If you see somebody not doing and being with somebody else just report that is un-American. That is un-American. I have the freedom to go where I want to go do what I want to do as long as it's legal and lawful not ruled by mandates but by law and the legislatures only think that only ones that can make law and so we find that all through this period of time. What were seeing a Glendening away of the freedoms that we hold dear. Be good if everybody in this country would take a few minutes to just read the Constitution. Read the bill of rights. Thank God for the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. The call that the Bill of Rights that give us rights as a as a people of this nation you be assured that there are enemies that were very desperately at work to destroy those rights when you look at history. When you look at historical factual find that governments and religion sometimes work and and I to be the enemy of truth. Now not all religion is truth and not all governments will, I will uphold tricks so sometimes in many times. Down through history, there have been those that work together to destroy truth and to destroy righteousness. I listed some examples. I got up this morning. Think about the message I just wrote all these things down and give you and from the early days of Bible history of the Jewish nation. There have been those that despised truth and righteousness good example of madness, member name of Jeremiah Jeremiah was that prophet that God said from your mother's womb you are. You are determined and destined to be the prophet of God, and he became that, but in his words were so filled with the truth of God and the message of the Lord that his government turned against him, put them in prison. Putting in a dungeon plucked his beard did not everything they could to shut his mouth and even came to the point one time in his life, he said, I'll not speak the word anymore, but then just a few moments he said, but the word of God burned in my heart and I could not do anything except speak and so even in the Jewish nation. There are been those times that truth would be burdened down off you go to the history of the world, the great leader that an terrible leader Nebuchadnezzar. He hated the Jew he destroyed the Jews land. He destroyed the temple and carried away the captives and we know the story of Daniel and all those that were were carried away, but he was a tyrant against truth. If you go a little bit later in history have abandoned the name of the role of raw and he killed thousands and destroyed the temple there in Jerusalem and he literally take the corpse of the bodies of those that he killed put them on steak and light them on fire to be the to be the streetlights of the nighttime. How demented can people be how terrible can folks treat other people. You have of the what used to be the USSR. The bulk of the culture of revolution that ushered in communism. They hate and still do hate the child of God about truth. Now you have an in history. We've had our our Nazis would enter Germany's those that destroyed and killed millions of people just simply because of their ethnic race of being a Jew, and by the way, there are still people today do the same thing to you think you get by with it and so we are we are living in a very dangerous time that were drifting toward that mindset or that thought could America be added to that list. Maybe so. In some areas. In some ways we are already on that list. Today we have elected officials that make the statement that the president is no longer welcome in their state. How dare them make a statement for everybody not everybody feels that way. I'm hoping November will tell the truth you have a mayor of a large city of our country and the she issues a decree that didn't matter what the president said that the churches of that city. She said how a few Dan to open your doors to parishioners tomorrow. Swift and decisive is decisive action will be taken and she goes on explains what some, that is, even to the destruction of their property. That's fact that's not just Internet talk and so how can we imagine that we have gone in just a few short weeks from where we were to where we are just over a virus and I'm not belittling no multitudes of people are sick with it have been sick with it. Multitudes have died but how dare them you something that's serious to put try to put the child of God under their thumb where we have to do what they say. Just because they say it. We do not live in a monarchy. We live in a democracy, really. We live in a Republic is not a democracy, and so we find that we are seeing these things and we we look back and and troubled about it and were saying. What in the world is going all to a elected official to say that if you open your church. There's a possibility that we will demolish it and so there's a clear and present danger in our country and those officials that been elected. They may take their oath of office. They swear that they will uphold the Constitution of the United States and they wanted up and throw away and so this morning I was to deal with the marks of a child of God, how what happens to us, and how it takes place. Does history repeat itself out. We all know that America came into existence because of the state run church and in Great Britain that controlled everything. Most of Europe and we had the pilgrims leave that country to come to a place where they can have freedom of worship is amazing thing when you study the history early history of our country before it was formulated into a nation that those people that left tire and then left the the struggles almost immediately within the colonies. They instituted some of the very same things. The early colonies, very few of them, and religious liberty is only one comment that really fought for the liberty of personal freedom and religious freedom. That was the little state of Rhode Island doesn't do it now. It's not that way now but that's where the where it all began, and we have a picture with their John Weatherford yelled: look if you haven't looked at my calendar. Look at he's put in prison or put in jail because he was he did not have a license to preach. He said I will not receive. I will not take a license and so he continued to preach at and the people followed him as he put in prison and put in jail and when he is in jail he preached out the window and multitudes would come and hear him preach and as he was preaching and he was a very what history tells us he is a very dramatic preacher and he would throw his arms in his arms to go outside the bars the jail and there's a fellow sitting there beside him every time he put his arms out he was flashing with a knife that was a government official and there are those that are gathered together, and they were splattered with blood from this man preaching the gospel, but he refused to be under the thumb of a tyrannical government and he was in jail at that time there were seven others in jail for the very same thing. They were all Baptist Baptist have always thought for personal religious liberty I got is read history. I'm not saying that because I'm a Baptist. If I submit this reading and and honest with history and have say the same thing that is truth and so we have thought. Our forefathers have fought for religious liberty from the very beginning of that this nation, so certainly he did have the marks and and so we find that all down through history, there have been those that denied the truth of God's word concerning a personal liberty that we worship our God you seek. I believe this morning that everybody has a right to worship or not worship if they don't want to worship that is their business. That is their right. That is their freedom, but don't destroy my freedom just because they don't want to. And so, though I I would fight for the right of the hair tentacle a religion to have the right to do what they do and say what they say believe what they say because if you can remove their right. You can remove my right so we believe in the soul liberty of an individual to honor and to worship the God as they so choose to. That is not that way today were saying experiencing many many things concerning the freedom that we have in America. Probably today's a very important day in the history of America. I wonder how many churches are really going to open or are they fearful are the scared and humanly speaking. Sometimes it gets scary. Sometimes the fear is there because there are folks even though we don't agree with them. There are folks that do have certain power over us even though we don't agree with it. I'm letting Kentucky. We had a we had a judge that said the shutting down the churches was unconstitutional. Now we need the Supreme Court to do the same thing and there are lawsuits galore their lawsuits everywhere to get this thing straightened up, praying that God would use those people that know truth about the Constitution about the word about that they would judge accordingly. That we would be free from the tyrants that would be upon us. This morning I was to read in the book of acts chapter 4 and here's a confrontation between government officials and preachers and the this is labeled in chapter 4 of axis labeled first persecution of the church. So were not dealing with something that's new or not doing something that is that is fresh off the press. But where were doing something that has been all along. And so here in acts chapter number four. Peter has addressed the Sanhedrin. That's the religious crowd, and he's given up his message and I'm not going to take the time to read all that. But in verse number 13 says when they saw the boldness of Peter and John and perceive that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marveled and they took knowledge of them that they had been with Jesus, they marveled, they were shocked. They were surprised but they understood. One thing was different about these men maybe than someone else. They had been with the Lord okay but when you're with the Lord. It makes a difference in your life. When the Lord comes in you life it makes a difference in the things you see the way you see them thing to hear the way you hear the way you act things you do everything about your life is change. They got there to change when salvation tops. So when they saw the boldness of Peter and John a Peter and preach the message that it was us on message against the and when they took notice of them. They perceive first of all, they were unlearned. They're not the most brilliant people in the world there just preachers, they had no physical training and had no classical training. They just had the training of the Lord. Peter was just a fisherman and has he the stand and tell us that we are wrong is he that condemn us for what we have done. Have we crucified the Lord so they perceive that they were unlearned and then they go on the board saying there ignorant of the wording that is not real bad word is that way that you use it, but we are all ignorant in some areas, there are certain things we cannot do because we are unlearned in that we don't have the knowledge I don't think I could do heart surgery. I'm inguinal that you would want me try. I don't think I could do certain other things because I'm unlearned in that and you are in the same position concerning other things, and so they marveled, they they understand that as far as they were concerned they were unlearned that they were ignorant but they did know one thing about them that they had been with the Lord okay what that's when the marks today of a child of God. Let people know that we know Jesus Christ that we are believers, that we are Christian that we belong to him. Part of the problem. Most people today who call themselves believers, they've never really been with Jesus. You can call yourself a believer, you call yourself a Christian, but unless you've met the Lord and come in contact with him and believed upon him, then you have no understanding of spiritual things and so this morning there is the mark of courage and boldness. If I send certain cities this morning. It would take courage to open the church. The because the threat is that the threat is real, but thank God we have a we have the Holy Spirit to guide just directs us in May as they open churches and I heard a fellow the other day making the talk about opening an opening his church is independent Baptist said and made very strong statement he made national news and head like a course were looked down upon that we do not care about people were scattered out of here this morning we can all sneeze it one time, it would matter and so it is not that we don't care is that we believe we have rights. We believe we have liberty we believe we have freedom and so therefore the mark of a child of God. First of all to have courage sometimes is difficult sometimes I don't have the courage sometimes I don't how the boldness may be that I need. Sometimes none of us do, but one of the great march of the believer, especially of Peter and John here was that they were looked down upon by the officials by the Sanhedrin and that was the religious organization. They were looked down upon by them because they were ignorant and unlearned because they didn't fall in line. They did do everything they said they were supposed to do later on they convince the civil government of wrong and you know the rest. The story that Jesus was crucified and that did not stop them because now here I after the resurrection of the Lord. Peter and John are preaching to that same group and he said he identifies them as those that crucified our Lord. They look down upon them, but yet they had boldness, they had understanding from the day of Pentecost, basically from that moment on, they hit the ground running and everywhere they went. They preach the gospel is what we are to do to preach the message of salvation to a world that's dying without him. Jesus Christ, our Lord Jesus Christ our Savior and thank God this morning we have a hole in the Lord Jesus Christ above everything else. I can be put in prison. You can be put in prison. But you know what we still are free. We have liberty in Christ Jesus would have liberty in the Lord Jesus Christ and so we find that these these two some of the marks that they bore was that they were they were obedient to the command of the Lord over the book of Galatians I chapter number six. In verse number 17. It says, from henceforth let no man troubled me. For I bear in my body to marks of the Lord Jesus, the apostle Paul could say that and say that truthfully he had to end hit on his body the marks of serving the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul was beaten. He was quipped he was put in jail. He was left for dad. He was starved and he says and it really doesn't matter to me anymore what they say because I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. Thank God for the Lord Jesus that gives us liberty in our soul and in our life. See David faced the giant Goliath. The face to have with boldness he faced him with courage he didn't run from the life he ran to Goliath and was all over. He had the head of Goliath in his hands. Joshua stood up for Lord and everyone when he and Caleb stood for Lord everybody else was against the takes courage and takes boldness Joshua seven and Caleb's that we can conquer the land. They went spied out the land and they came back with good report, and the other tense and all we can do because there's giants in the land. Thank God. God can handle the Giants to encounter the problem thing have the struggles and who knows what to face us tomorrow the next day next month, next year, there may be Johnson in front of us, but may we have in our body in our life that the mark of boldness and courage that will stand for God were going to stand for the Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible says in Romans chapter number eight in verse number 31 what shall we say that to these things. If God be for us, who can be against us. If God's forests doesn't matter who's against us. If God is for us it the whole world can be against you and you still have the majority you have the Lord. Romans chapter number eight verse number 35 says, who shall separate us from the love of Christ, whose will be able to do that and that no one then he begins to list a lot of things he says out tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword are those things go to separate us from the love in the presence of the power of God. There's no way because he lives in our heart. He lives in our our soul, he says, for thy sake we are killed all the day long we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter Navy and all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. Paul says, for I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, or things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love God, thank God this morning. It is Christ that lives in us is the love of God which is in Jesus Christ our Lord is our Savior. He's one that has delivered us from from this world of sin. He's one that one day will deliver us to the world, that of life that is for ever and forever, so may we bear the mark of the Lord being bold and courageous in what we believe what we stand for. That's in this book nice easy to go with the flow sometimes had to stand against the tide sometimes had to stand if there's the mark that we should have is for compassion of the lost those folks that we so disdained that's taking place in their words are stronger words are hard and their their anger against that the people of God and what we still need to have compassion. Pray for them. That's all hope that that I don't get it from their advisors. They're not going to get pulled from their their constituents. The only hope that they have is in Jesus Christ and we need to have the compact we need to have the mark of compassion to pray for those that even we despitefully use us to fight against us. Jesus on the cross of Calvary, said father forgive them for they know not what they do. The martyr Stephen as he saw the Lord standing welcoming him. He said Lord up, do not link this to their charge. So one of the great marks of the believers that we have compassion on those that even with a this people may not understand our language but they can understand our tears. They may not agree with what we say and what week I want to do, but they they cannot disagree that compassion flows from lies in the form of tears concerned over their eternity. The world outside these doors are filled with people that need the Lord Jesus. They may be religious but they still need the Lord they may go to church they may go to forever whatever they a place they go to worship. They need Jesus Christ and one of the marks that you and I are to have that we are to show forth to them is that we care about the eye. As I said earlier, I believe they have the right to do and worship. Anyway they want to. I believe people have the right to worship any god they want to but I still pray for the that the light of the glorious gospel might break in upon their heart as it did Saul of Tarsus that day on the road to Damascus when he had orders in his hand that he found anybody that was in the way of Christianity that he had the power to put them in prison to put them in jail or even to take their life that one day he met Jesus Christ, and later on Paul said I would to God that my brother and according to the flesh about the Jew. They went to the Gentiles. He went up every people of the world. We set my heart is still concerned about my own people, those that he once worked for trying to deliver Christians to the mark of compassion. I'm glad somebody had compassion on me pay back the life somebody that showed you that they were concerned about what might've been a Sunday school teacher might've been a preacher my best friend my Bennett grandmother, grandfather, I've been a parent but somebody showed you compassion and they told you the story of the Lord Jesus Christ. Do we not all the world, the same story do we not all the world the same message that we received one day at the compassion heart of heart of concerned heart that love God do we not owe it to the world that even though they might despitefully aid us and use us do not owe it to them to tell the truth that one day they might come to a knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ like we did do we not owe it to our family did not want our friends do we not owe it to those whom we have contact with that we're concerned about them. We can use that mark of boldness and understanding and and and forcefulness, but also having compassion in our heart be moved toward. The Bible says over and over again that when Jesus saw the multitude what he had compassion. He was moved by what he saw. He saw Jerusalem one day he looked down off the mountain side and he saw that little village that was called Jerusalem is an old Jerusalem dreams and how off I would get that you you would not in the but lately of finding weeping over that city. As we find that you and I this one. We must have marks marks of courage. Boldness, the marks of compassion the mark that would tell the world that we know the Lord Jesus Christ. Yes, we live in fear, for I would never thought how many times I've said I never would've thought to see this in my country, once and takes more it's more a real statement. Now, there has been who would've ever thought to hear a mayor of a major city of this country safe. You open your church doors. We will have the possibility of demolishing it and putting everybody in jail. I never thought that I would heard that on the news media by country I've heard in China, I've heard about in Russia heard about in Korea. I've heard about a lot of different nations. We never heard that in our country. That's why I said a moment ago. I believe we are entering into a very not only different but a very dangerous. The history of our country today may be a very pivotal point. I think God for president that says church. He didn't just say church. He said synagogue at the temples. Wherever anybody worship. He said very sensual to every Christian. The church is essential to ever achieve. The temple is essential to ever Islamic person. Their place of worship is essential and well-defined, the freedom for them. So we have our freedom also that we bear the marks of a Christian boldness, courage, understanding, compassion, if not careful, and it nobody says it will not happen. It may one day we may be up to have to say like Paul did. I bury my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. May God help us this morning stand for righteousness and truth. Pray for our president. If you like them or don't like him. Pray for him that he make some choices that be right for the child of God's not a Republican and Democratic problem that is evil against righteousness, and you better fall on the righteous side and forget the politics*deeper than that. The God of this world he sees. He got a hold now he sees he's got a possibility that and the God of this world, which is the devil, he got a move against us. I'm glad greater is he that sent me, and he that's in the world to stand together this morning.


(30) 5-21-2020 Wed. pm. GBC Service. Message this evening:

He Beheld the City with Tears

Luke 19:37-48 (KJV)


37  And when he was come nigh, even now at the descent of the mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen;
38  Saying,
Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest.
39  And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke thy disciples.
40  And he answered and said unto them,
I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.
41  And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it,
42  Saying,
If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes.
43  
For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side,
44  
And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.
45  And he went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold therein, and them that bought;
46  Saying unto them,
It is written, My house is the house of prayer: but ye have made it a den of thieves.
47  And he taught daily in the temple. But the chief priests and the scribes and the chief of the people sought to destroy him,
48  And could not find what they might do: for all the people were very attentive to hear him.

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BIBLE EXPOSITION COMMENTARY ON

Luke 19:37-48

Celebration (vv. 37-40). This is the only time that Jesus permitted a public demonstration on His behalf, and He did so for at least two reasons. First, He was fulfilling prophecy and presenting Himself as Israel's king (Zech. 9:9). How much of this the crowd really understood we cannot tell, even though they responded by quoting their praises from a messianic psalm (Ps. 118:25-26). No doubt many of the Passover pilgrims thought that Jesus would now get rid of the Roman invaders and establish the glorious kingdom.

The second reason for this demonstration was to force the Jewish religious leaders to act. They had hoped to arrest Him after the Passover (Matt. 26:3-5), but God had ordained that His Son be slain on Passover as the "Lamb of God, who taketh away the sin of the world" (John 1:29; and see 1 Cor. 5:7). Every previous attempt to arrest Jesus had failed because "His hour had not yet come" (John 7:30; 8:20; also see John 13:1; 17:1). When they saw this great public celebration, the leaders knew that they had to act, and the willing cooperation of Judas solved their problem for them (Matt. 26:14-16).

The theme of the celebration was peace. Dr. Luke opened his Gospel with the angel's announcement of "peace on earth" (Luke 2:14), but now the theme was "peace in heaven." Because the King was rejected, there could be no peace on earth. Instead, there would be constant bitter conflict between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of evil (Luke 12:49-53). There would be no peace on earth but, thanks to Christ's work on the cross, there is "peace with God" in heaven (Rom. 5:1; Col. 1:20). The appeal today is, "Be ye reconciled to God!" (2 Cor. 5:17-21)

Lamentation (vv. 41-44). While the crowd was rejoicing, Jesus was weeping! This is the second occasion on which our Lord wept openly, the first being at the tomb of Lazarus (John 11:35). There He wept quietly, but here He uttered a loud lamentation like one mourning over the dead. In this, He was like the Prophet Jeremiah who wept bitterly over the destruction of Jerusalem 0er. 9:lff; see also the Book of Lamentations). Jonah looked on Nineveh and hoped it would be destroyed (Jonah 4), while Jesus looked at Jerusalem and wept because it had destroyed itself.

No matter where Jesus looked, He found cause for weeping. If He looked back, He saw how the nation had wasted its opportunities and been ignorant of their "time of visitation." If He looked within, He saw spiritual ignorance and blindness in the hearts of the people. They should have known who He was, for God had given them His Word and sent His messengers to prepare the way.

As He looked around, Jesus saw religious activity that accomplished very little. The temple had become a den of thieves, and the religious leaders were out to kill Him. The city was filled with pilgrims celebrating a festival, but the hearts of the people were heavy with sin and life's burdens.

As Jesus looked ahead, He wept as He saw the terrible judgment that was coming to the nation, the city, and the temple. In a.d. 70, the Romans would come and, after a siege of 143 days, kill 600,000 Jews, take thousands more captive, and then destroy the temple and the city. Why did all of this happen? Because the people did not know that God had visited them! "He came unto His own, and His own received Him not" (John 1:11). "We will not have this man to reign over us!" (Luke 19:14)

Denunciation (vv. 45-48). Jesus lodged in Bethany that night (Matt. 21:17) and came into the city early the next morning. It was then that He cursed the fig tree (Mark 11:12-14) and cleansed the temple for the second time. (See John 2:13-22 for the record of the first cleansing of the temple.)

The court of the Gentiles was the only place in the temple that was available to the Gentiles. There the Jews could witness to their "pagan" neighbors and tell them about the one true and living God. But instead of being devoted to evangelism, the area was used for a "religious marketplace" where Jews from other lands could exchange money and purchase approved sacrifices. The priests managed this business and made a good profit from it.

Instead of praying for the people, the priests were preying on the people! The temple was not a "house of prayer" (Isa. 56:7); it was a "den of thieves" (Jer. 7:11). Campbell Morgan reminds us that a "den of thieves" is a place where thieves run to hide after they have committed their wicked deeds. The religious leaders were using the services of the holy temple to cover up their sins (see Isa. 1:1-20). But before we condemn them too harshly, have we ever gone to church and participated in religious worship just to give people the impression that we were godly?

Jesus remained in the temple and used it as a gathering place for those who needed help. He healed many who were sick and afflicted, and He taught the people the Word of God. The hypocritical religious leaders tried to destroy Him, but His hour had not yet come and they could not touch Him. In the days that followed, they argued with Him and tried to catch Him in His words (Luke 20), but they failed. When His hour came, He would surrender to them and they would crucify Him.

The courageous Son of God had set His face like a flint and come to Jerusalem. During His last week of ministry, He would courageously face His enemies and then bravely go to the cross to die for the sins of the world.

He still summons us to be courageous!


Bible Exposition Commentary - Be Courageous (Luke 14-24).

Transcription of Today's Message by Bro. Lawrence Richardson

Well good afternoon to each of you and we thank the Lord for another opportunity that we have to come by way of Facebook life to share with you some things on the word of God here on Wednesday night and looking forward to seeing what the Lord has for us. I will be in Luke chapter 19 a few minutes but time will take this a little bit to think about some of our prayer request that we had different missionaries we we support and pray the Lord bless and help them. I talked to brother Leo McElroy. I guess it was today earlier and he just found out that the border is so close for another 30 days or so that'll make three months that the board be closed between the United States and Canada brother Leo lives in Vermont but he has church there and the little town Stansted, Québec, Canada, and hasn't been able to get to the church now for two months now will be three months and so to be praying for him because they still have they try to have their meetings together like we do here. So many times and of course they're paying rent on the building as a mission church and he's talking yesterday with me and said they paid to all the rent these months not even been able to get to the building and the site is real concern to him. And of course I'm sure it's a concern to everyone that it's in that position. So pray for Leo. Pray for all of our missionaries – the Lord to be with them. Give them understanding and direction during this time because we certainly do not have all the answers. We don't have all the clues to what's going on was taking place, but I'm glad the Lord does and so just remember the missionaries around the world. Many of them are struggling quite a bit with finances and with health issues and so they certainly we don't need to forget about them during during this time and remember them in our prayers, then the I'm sure all the snow folks that are sick in our immediate families or extended families friends that we know some are not doing well and so we certainly want pray for, pray for them and remember them them to pray for the Lord's day service this coming Sunday I will be meeting here in the auditorium. As we have since Mother's Day on Sunday and so we are looking forward to that and pray the Lord bless our gathering together. We do have praise that I tell yesterday my daughter gave word it to the little town that they lived in was under could be undergoing some bad flooding and so they were sorta concerned about that. A lot of things in the town enclosed up and moved the things that even out of the businesses in the restaurants. It all closed up about to we think the Lord after that did not take place, the crest of the river was far less than what they first thought. And so we are grateful for that. And so God does answer prayer. God doesn't does know the things that we we have in need of he. He understands us and our needs better than we do and a sign that we can trust upon him and lean upon him and his his understanding his direction. Let's go the Lord in prayer and then will be reading in Luke chapter number 19 tonight and will be dealing with the subject of where the Lord looked over the city of Jerusalem and he gave them a very sad commentary as to what will be taking place in the very near future. Less now for prayer and ask God to bless tonight our dear Lord, we come to you today. We thank you for the privilege of prayer. We thank you for the time that we can call upon you, and you hear our prayers to answer our prayers. Lord, you know the needs of our hearts and our souls in an dear Lord, we trust you, and we believe you accept all the things that you do for us because everything you do is always good. It's always right and correct and helps us in our personal walk with you and the soldier Lord, we do pray that you would bless our missionaries that we as we just mentioned we hear church we support a number of missionaries we have the young men out of our church. Some of them are pastoring some of our missionaries around this world and so Lord, we ask that you be with them and help them and they give them the words to say in the messages to give to the people you have called them too and that will give them the direction and the protection that's needed in their life. Bless our time together tonight around the word of the Lord. We do thank you for your word. Thank you for God's message to mankind what I pray you help us to take it to our heart that we might tell it to others. Also, we ask these things in Jesus holy name, a man all right tonight in Luke chapter number 19 want to begin reading in verse number 37 and that will redound to verse number 448 quite a few verses may be little more than we normally do here on our Facebook but I want to get all these verses then so that we can understand and the surrounding and what's taking place here as the Lord speaks to his disciples and then as he beheld the holes, the city that is before him so Luke chapter 19 and verse number 37 and him and when he was come nigh, even now to the dissent of the Mount of olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen same blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord peace in heaven and glory. I am the highest and some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, mastering rebuke thy disciples and answered and said unto them, I'll tell you that if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out, and when he was come near, he beheld the city and wept over it, saying, if thou hast known even that at least in this thy day. The things that which behold are belong untucked to thy thy peace but now they are hid from that nice for the days shall come upon the that thine enemies shall cast a trench about the compass the ground and keep the him on every side, and they shall lay the even with the ground by children within the they shall not leave the leave and in the one stone upon another, because thou new is not the time of thy visitation and he went into the temple and began to cast out them that sold therein, and that have brought saying under them. This is written, my house is the house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves and he taught daily in the temple about the chief priest and scribes and the chief of the people sought to destroy him and it could not find out what they might do for all the people were very attentive to hear him. If you read the surrounding verse is the verses just preceding these verses you will find that this is the account of the triumphal entry of the Lord into the city of Jerusalem of the people rejoicing. The disciples were rejoicing and glad for all the good things that they had to had seen all the good things that had been given unto them, and they were rejoicing because of that, but you find that there's always that the group of following around that they are trying to get the disciples to be quite trying to get them to to hush their sound and then they they sought how that they might destroy him. So the city of Jerusalem is just at the outskirts of the dissent of the amount of violence where Jesus preached some messages and as he was coming down that that mountain, he beheld the city as he came down he entered into this and it was entering into the city from over the Mount of olives, which from there he could look over and see the whole city in one up one place and he gives them, gives them a message here in verse number 41 it says he beheld the city and well over it now. The reason Jesus was weeping over the city because he knew the future and he knew what was going take place and just a little while on to his people of the city of Jerusalem and of this of verse 41 says you're going to. He wept over that place. He wept over that city and now he gives the message and gives them the story of what is going to happen to them in silence to think tonight upon the subject of he beheld the city and he beheld it with tears of the tears that would come the calls of the anguish that was in his heart and his soul to his mind for knowing what was going take place in the very near future, so he beheld the city and the many of them were unconcerned. Many of them that I did not care, but Jesus always has compassion for you and I Jesus always has compassion for those that that are following after him and so he looked upon the city and he looked upon it with tears. Now he tells them some things is going to take place. He said you're going to be trenched around your families are going to be destroyed. History tells us that when know when the Roman Emperor came in. He literally didn't destroy the people of God's city and destroyed the temple and literally one by one removed the stones before I before the very eyes of worthy prophecy that Jesus made to them was fulfilled that not one stone would be left upon another and saw Melissa to look tonight of Jesus beholding the city. First of all for the righteous and for they were rebuked there were those that were rejoicing and that they were saying. Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord peace in heaven and glory in the eyes but he saw people also that were rebuking the good things that the Lord had done for him. The disciples were rejoicing. They were praising. They were marveling at all the of the great works that he did, but the Pharisees wanted to shut them up. They want to shut them down aware that their praise would not go forward. You know that's always the deployment of the devil. He wants to shut down our message. He wants to shut down of the story of the Lord. He certainly doesn't desire that we praise the Lord. It's okay, maybe praising in your heart but don't praise him out for everybody can see it because you you will be looked upon differently and and so the devil puts things in our heart that would make us draw back and and that he will rebuke us for even living and honoring the Lord Jesus Christ and so that the Lord here as he comes down and enters into the city. He is beholding he's hearing the praises of his disciples. They were praising him for the things that he had done this a blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord peace in heaven and glory in the highest what they were doing they were praising Jesus Christ for being the son of God. They were honoring the Lord for being God in the flesh, and that the Lord had come to and be of their Messiah to be there deliver up and they had seen, and they had heard and they had recognize all the miracles that Jesus did. Now he's entering into the city of Jerusalem triumphantly and he read all the different accounts of this that they throw down the palm leaves before him and he he walks in and there rejoicing, but there's always that group that wants to put a damper on the praise of the Lord, and you can be guaranteed. And I don't think I have to say too much about it. I usually guarantee there's that group today that wants to put a damper on our our rejoicing. They want us client they want to say and how they will our show churches close. This has been on these last couple of months and still on the battles going on across our nation that the churches should be opened up freely and and so that the battle rages today just like it did some 2000 years ago. There's always the enemy there's always the here there classified as the Pharisees, you will read your Bible and read history you will find the Pharisees were very, very religious people, but they hated Jesus Christ of there's a lot of religious people tonight that hate the message of salvation. They hate the message of the Lord Jesus Christ. There they may have a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof, and they hate that the whole message of the Lord Jesus Christ and they tried to silence us that believe the truth of the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. He beholds the city where the righteous were being reviewed they were doing the right thing. But the religious crowd comes along, says, and even causing master and says says under him master rebuke thy disciples Jesus as a good answer for them. Here in verse number 40. He says he said and then I'll tell you that if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out. See, there's only praise to our God with we do it or we don't do it there's going to be a an understanding that Jesus Christ is the son of God, so he told these Pharisees. He said if I disciples if their client. If I rebuke them and their quiet. He said the stones around you are there going to cry out and they're going to crowd the praises of God and what I will rebuke that was to the to the Pharisees, you can make the rebuke thy disciples, but you will rebuke the stones and so he beholds the city for that for the most part, many of them were rebuking the good things in the righteousness of God. And this same group for we read just a moment ago how they come along and they they seek how they can destroy him. They seek out they can do away with him. And of course, literally one day they crucified him on the cross of Calvary, using the of the different guises of the Roman government. But that really and truly no man mailed him to the cross without his consent I Jesus freely died on the cross of Calvary that we might have life. I wonder tonight what Jesus is looking and saying when he, from the very portals of glory as he looks down upon this earth as he looks down upon the people he's going to see some Christians rejoicing Eagle seek a believer's praising him and honoring him, but he's also also going to hear of rebuke of the wicked that he's also been here, the rebuke of those that do not want that I have the blessings of the Lord, and do not want anyone to express the goodness of God is when the Lord looks from him from heaven as he looked from that side of the mountain is delectable drizzly looks from heaven tonight and I believe he sees the same thing. He seems that he sees the attitude of the believer which is one of praise and honor and rejoicing and then he sees the attitude of the unbeliever, even though they may be religious even though they may go to church even though they may have their name on church role they've gone through all the catechisms that go through all the baptisms they've done everything their church has totally booked due to yet they are far from God. Their heart is not right with God. He sees those also and their comments about his disciples. You and I am not tonight are his disciples, we belong to him and well not to be troubled will not be fearful. I we really ought not to be surprised when someone would speak evil against us because if they did that to the Lord. They'll do that to you and I as we speak for him. Then number two, we find that Jesus beheld the city that had rejected the Redeemer they rejected what was given to them. He tells us in verse number 42, he said, if thou hast known, even now, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace but now they are hid from thine eyes for the day shall come upon the end… Enemies shall cast a trench about the and that literally did happen, they dug a trench around the city of Jerusalem. History tells us that they within just a few days. They built a 5 mile wall around Jerusalem had many towers upon that nobody could come in and nobody could go out that sound familiar and and they did everything to destroy the things of the Lord and says they'll compass about around the and keep the in on every side. So here the Lord sees a city that is rejecting the commentary that Jesus gives them says in the future. This is what's going to happen in the future. They're gonna love the whole cities will be destroyed literally because of the rejection of Jesus Christ as their Messiah. They had rejected his person. They rejected his promises. They rejected his power. They even rejected the purpose and they they said will not have him rule over us. Well, the judgment of God fell upon them because of their attitude toward God. I believe the judgment of God calls upon nations and people kindred, and tongue, even to die because of the rejection of the Lord Jesus Christ. We have people saying will God God not involve God doesn't do anything God just a figment of imagination there. There's no such thing as a literal God is just what ever you think he is in your heart and you pray to your God. I pray to my God know if you if you don't pray to God you pray to the God of the Bible, the Lord Jesus Christ, the son of God, and we find that when we reject him when people reject him this all think one thing left it's either when rejection comes, it's either repentance on our part or its its destruction from the Lord's judgment of God upon all people, and so tonight when Jesus looked upon the city. He really is giving us a a picture into the future of what he sees in a world that has rejected him. Verse number 44 says they shall leave. They shall lay the even with the ground. That means you will be your go beyond the ground, and thy children within the that's even children that not even born, and that they shall not believe in the one stone upon another, because thou knowest not, the time of thy visitation. What a sad message Jesus gives unto these Pharisees that he's not talking to those that are praising him is not talking to those that are rejoicing. He's talking to those that rebuke one him to rebuke them, and he said you don't even know the time you're living in, you don't have a understanding. He said here's what's going to happen to still be a time when you will be laid flat on the ground. Your children will be there with you and that he says not only one stone left upon another in this city and that literally did happen and he said it's all because you didn't recognize the date of the time of your visitation. They didn't understand they didn't see that God was visiting them that God was offering them a whole. He was offering them direction and they said will not have him. They later on just a few days after this account of these are some of those that were saying, crucify him, crucify him give us Barabbas. I will not have him rule over us. Let his blood be on our hands and from generation after generation after generation. Let the blood be upon our children's hands. Lord said you don't even know the time your visitation, you don't even know that God is in your midst. You don't even realize that Jesus is one there talking to you don't even know not know who he is or you may know about him, like a lot of people today I people know about it but I don't know him, I know about people I know about a lot of people but there's a crime unless number that I know personally and so Jesus says you may know about me but you don't know me you don't know the time of the visitation. I'm afraid our nation doesn't realize the opportunity that we have we have been blessed of God for these over 240 years, and God is honor his word because we've honor God's word God's blessing God's given things to us things are little bit different now our thing. Maybe it's because we didn't know the time of our visitation. Maybe it's because we didn't understand what was before us. And as Jesus told the city of Jerusalem what's going to happen. Jesus tells us. Also what's going to happen in this old world in which we live. Just read Revelation chapter 4 on through the end of it and you'll find out what is prepared for the unbeliever, once prepared for those that have rejected him prepared for those that did not recognize the time of their visitation. He beheld the city where robbery was okay and thievery was okay. He goes into the temple, and he runs the money changers out and he said you've made by my house up a dinner thesis. He said my house is a house of prayer exhibit, but you have you made it something in totally different and he said you made it a den of thieves and and and so he beheld the city that was only interested in monetary things that moved all their wares inside the temple compound and that was not just the building but the whole Temple Mount temple area and places for Gentiles to be had different places for different people to be had a temple where the Jews were to come into worship and on the inside of there are those that were interested in the monetary value of things they moved their their their tables in and they were there just to make money. They were there just to just to have what they can get that sound familiar, also does not believe they only interested in what they get. I'm sorry to say there's a lot of churches in lot organizations. There's even a lot of preachers that are only interested in what they can get you what they they do not understand the time of the visitation of the Lord either is so heat he beheld the place that was filled with robbery and disrespect for the things of God. I read today were I forget where it is located. There's a church that was burned to the ground because they went to went to church I think is a Pentecostal church and someone came in last night set it on fire and destroyed the whole building and I wrote the road on the wall or on the ground or something somewhere. Therefore, they could read it. They said now you will come to church with those folks that did that they don't have understanding that that the building is not church, not hate stand for God. What they did. One day they will. And so they wrote on the on the pavement hypocrite see the world hates righteousness. The world hates the true believers loving and leaving for the Lord and they'll rob us of that joy that will destroy us if they can, and we see it mounting more and more all the time because we have the have the ear within us and have the words within us that it's not will have to have churches stock is not essential. We may not be essential them, but is essential to the child of God that we believe can serve and worship the Lord Jesus Christ. So he beheld the city that was some was rejoicing some was rebuking, he beheld the city that rejected him. He beheld the city that was filled with robbery and disrespect. He beheld the city that had resorted to religion, but verse number 47, and he taught them daily in the temple notice is but the chief priest and the scribes and the chief of the people saw to destroy him. They were religious. He saw in the city follow their direction, they did not know the time of their visitation heading right there in their presence. They could talk to the Lord they could hug the Lord they can handle they can have communion together with each other and fellowship together and there he was teaching, and people multitudes were following after him. But the religious crowd. They sought to destroy him. Verse 47. They didn't understand they have no recognition of the time of their visitation by God help us tonight to realize that the Lord is still giving us time he is still giving us opportunity and may we as believers call upon him and ask for his guidance in his direction and his help and as Jesus looked up through those saddened eyes he saw people that were going to be judged and had nothing left. He looked at their perplexity. They rejected him. He looked at their pain, their pain that was coming just a few years. A.D. 70. Will go back and check it in history books. It's a historical fact that Rome came in and destroyed the city of Jerusalem and killed multitudes and scattered them, he saw the pain and that he had pity on them and he sorrowed the Scripture says here when he looked upon them. He had sorrow and was sorrow. There's always those those tears that a company that and so when he beheld the city. I think he was also the holding the world in which we live. He's looking the night. He sees the very same thing and he's already written to us is already given to us what will happen in the future. It's going be worse than what were going through now is going be worse than what Drews went through A.D. 70 of the whole world is going to be a people and course they're gonna they're going to have their their Messiah, their Savior Scripture causing the antichrist and they'll follow after him blindly about, they'll take everything he says as truth. Like a lot of people are doing today. I believe were just getting conditioned for that man of sin that antichrist to come on the scene and say I've got all the answers. The Lord looks down through time and eternity. He sees all that he gives us understand he gives us his word and we need to beware and to be aware of the time of our visitation. Thank God he's here. Thank God he still working and he will and continues with his people until he gathers us to himself a spouse for prayer our father we come tonight. We thank you for the encouragement that we get from the word of God. Even in these verses were we see the turmoil in the destruction we see the encouraging words of the Lord that tells his disciples that everything is well. We tonight may be going through a lot of struggles and lot more. Maybe then we would even have thought about it, just a few months ago, but Lord, I'm glad you're in control. You know everything taking place and you're able as you as you look down through the what we call time you're able to encourage your people and may God help us, Lord, will you help us that we would know the time of our visitation and we asked these things in Jesus precious name. Amen. I bless you now.


29B. We Are To Be The Light of the World. John 1:1-10

The Light In a Dark World

by Bro. L. Richardson, 30 min

John 1: The Divinity, Humanity, and Work of Jesus Christ


John 1:1-9 (KJV)


1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

2  The same was in the beginning with God.

3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

4  In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

5  And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

6  There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.

7  The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.

8  He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

9  That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

John Chapter 1. Commentary by J.Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible Series
THEME: Prologue -- Incarnation; Word is God, Word became flesh, Word revealed God; witness of John the Baptist; witness of Andrew; witness of Philip; witness of Nathanael
Word Is God -- Word Became Flesh -- Word Revealed God (1:1-12)
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God [John 1:1].
The Gospel of John introduces the Lord Jesus Christ with three tremendous statements:

"In the beginning was the Word,"
"And the Word was with God,"
"And the Word was God."

"The Word" is one of the highest and most profound titles of the Lord Jesus Christ. To determine the exact meaning is not easy. Obviously the Lord Jesus Christ is not the logos of Greek philosophy; rather He is the memra of the Hebrew Scriptures. Notice how important the Word is in the Old Testament. For instance, the name for Jehovah was never pronounced. It was such a holy word that they never used it at all. But this is the One who is the Word and, gathering up everything that was said of Him in the Old Testament, He is now presented as the One "In the beginning." This beginning antedates the very first words in the Bible, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." That beginning can be dated, although I do not believe that anyone can date it accurately -- it is nonsense to say that it is 4004 B.C., as Ussher's dating has it. It probably goes back billions and billions of years. You see, you and I are dealing with the God of eternity. When you go back to creation, He is already there, and that is exactly the way this is used -- "in the beginning was the Word." Notice it is not is the Word; it was not in the beginning that the Word started out or was begotten. Was (as Dr. Lenske points out) is known as a durative imperfect, meaning continued action. It means that the Word was in the beginning. What beginning? Just as far back as you want to go. The Bible says, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth" (Gen. 1:1). Does that begin God? No, just keep on going back billions and trillions and "squillions" of years. I can think back to billions of years back of creation -- maybe you can go beyond that -- but let's put down a point there, billions of years back of creation. He already was; He comes out of eternity to meet us. He did not begin. "In the beginning was the Word" -- He was already there when the beginning was. "Well," somebody says, "there has to be a beginning somewhere." All right, wherever you begin, He is there to meet you, He is already past tense. "In the beginning was the Word" -- five words in the original language, and there is not a man on topside of this earth who can put a date on it or understand it or fathom it. This first tremendous statement starts us off in space, you see.
The second statement is this, "and the Word was with God." This makes it abundantly clear that He is separate and distinct from God the Father. You cannot identify Him as God the Father because He is with God. "But," someone says, "if He is with God, He is not God." The third statement sets us straight, "and the Word was God." This is a clear, emphatic declaration that the Lord Jesus Christ is God. In fact, the Greek is more specific than this, because in the Greek language the important word is placed at the beginning of the sentence and it reads, "God was the Word." That is emphatic; you cannot get it more emphatic than that. Do you want to get rid of the deity of Christ? My friend, you cannot get rid of it. The first three statements in John's Gospel tie the thing down. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."
Let's move on down to verse 14 and notice the three statements there.
And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth [John 1:14].

"And the Word was made flesh,"
"And the Word dwelt among us,"
"He was full of grace and truth."

The Greek philosopher probably would have stayed with us through verse one, but he leaves us here. He would never agree that the Word was made flesh. The Greek language allows us to put it more specifically and, I think, more accurately: "The Word was born flesh." Turn this over in your mind for a moment. Here comes God out of eternity, already the Ancient of Days; but He also came to Bethlehem, a little baby thing that made a woman cry. And notice that John's Gospel does not even mention His birth in Bethlehem. Do you know why? He is talking about One who is too big for Bethlehem. Out of eternity, the Word became flesh.

"And [the Word] dwelt among us" is the second statement in verse 14. "Dwelt" is from skenoo; it means "He pitched His tent among us." Our human bodies are merely little tents in which we live. The apostle Paul used the same imagery: "...we know that if... this tabernacle were dissolved..." (2Cor. 5:1). This house in which we live is a tabernacle, a tent, that can be blown over in a night; it can be snuffed out in an instant. Because you and I live in these little tents, the God of eternity took upon Himself a human body and thus pitched His tent down here among us. Such is the second tremendous statement.

Notice the third, "(and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth." Now John is saying something else. The question I would naturally ask at this point is, "If He was made flesh, He certainly limited himself." John says, "Wait a minute -- He was full of grace and truth." The word "full" means that you just could not have any more. He brought all the deity with Him, and He was full of grace and full of truth when He came down here.

Now we move to verse 18 to find three statements again.
No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him [John 1:18].

"No man hath seen God at any time;"
"The only begotten Son, which
is in the bosom of the Father, "
"He hath declared him."

Notice the first: "No man hath seen God at any time." Why? He will explain it in this Gospel; the Lord Jesus will tell the woman at the well, "God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth" (John 4:24) -- for God is spirit. No man has seen God at any time. What about the appearances in the Old Testament? God never revealed Himself in the Old Testament to the eyes of man. What, then, did they see? Well, go back and read the record. For instance, Jacob said that he saw God, but what he saw was the angel of the Lord who wrestled with him. That was a manifestation, but he did not see God because God is a spirit. "No man hath seen God at any time."

The second statement is, "the only begotten Son." The best Greek text is that of Nestle, the German scholar. He has come to the definite conclusion that it is not the only begotten Son, but the only begotten God. I prefer that also. "Which is in the bosom of the Father" tells us a great deal. He did not come from the head of God to reveal the wisdom of God; He did not come from the foot of God to be a servant of man. (Have you ever noticed that although we speak of the fact He was a servant, whose shoes did He ever shine? Did He ever run an errand for anybody? He did not. He said, "For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me" (John 6:38). He was God's servant -- He came to serve Him, and as He served the Father, He served men.) He did not come from the feet; He did not come from the head; it was from the bosom of the Father that He came. He came to reveal the heart of God: He was "the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father."

The third statement completes verse eighteen: "he hath declared him." The Greek word here is exegesato. Ago is "to lead" and ex is "out." It means that what Jesus Christ did was to lead God out into the open. Do you know anything bigger than that? A little trip to the moon is nothing in comparison. Here He comes out of eternity past, the God of this universe, the Creator of everything, taking upon Himself human flesh, and bringing God out into the open so that men can know Him. My friend, the only way in the world you can know God is through this One, Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ came to reveal God because He is God.

I am not through with these statements; there is something else here. Let's put together the first verse in each of these three groups and see what we come up with:

"In the beginning was the Word," "And the Word was made flesh," "No man hath seen God at any time."

You could not see God -- God is spirit. He had to become flesh; He had to become one of us in order for us to know Him. We could not go up there to understand Him; He had to come down here and bring God down where we are.
Now let's put the second statements together from each of the three groups:

"The Word was with God," "And dwelt among us," "The only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father."

Consider this One for a moment -- the angels bowed before Him, He was with God, on an equality with God. The apostle Paul wrote of Him, He "...thought it not robbery to be equal with God" (Phil. 2:6). That is, He did not go to school to become God; it was not something He worked overtime to attain. It was not a degree that He earned. He did not try to be God; He was God. I do not mean to be irreverent, but He did not say to the Father when He came to this earth, "Keep your eye on Gabriel; he is after My job; watch him while I'm gone." He did not have to do that -- nobody could take His place. He was God. Here He comes: born in Bethlehem, a few little shepherds there, not many; He goes up to Nazareth, thirty years hidden away in Nazareth. God, out of eternity coming down and going to Nazareth, working in a carpenter shop. Why? So you can know God. The only way you will ever know Him, my friend, is to know this One. "The only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father" is the only One who can reveal God to us.
Now notice the third statement in each group:

"The Word was God," "And we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth," "He hath declared him."

When He was down here, He was still God, full of grace and truth. And He declared Him; He is the only one who can lead Him out in the open where we can get acquainted with Him.

We are not through with this. I want you to see something else. How do you divide up this universe? I sat with a man who designed the shield that has been on all these space crafts to make their re-entry. He is a scientist who is an authority on heat. As we had lunch together in New Jersey, he said, "You know, this universe is made up of just three things. I believe that God has put His fingerprints on everything -- the Trinity is everywhere."

Then he explained what he meant. The universe is divided up into time, space, and matter. Can you think of a fourth? The very interesting thing is that time, space, and matter include everything that is in this universe as you and I know it.

Then time can be divided into just three parts: past, present, and future. Can you think of a fourth? And what about space? Length, breadth, and height. Is there another direction? Also there is in matter energy, motion, and phenomena. Those are the three divisions of the three divisions. The universe in which we live bears the mark of the Trinity.

Now notice the way in which the Incarnation is geared into this observation. Verse 1:

Time: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God."

Space: "The Word was made flesh" -- became flesh, came down into space. Where? To Bethlehem, a little geographical spot -- and even this earth was a pretty small spot for Him to come to -- and He pitched His tent here among us. We beheld His glory, full of grace and truth.

Matter: "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him." Because He became matter, became a man, took upon Himself humanity, men could see and know God. This is the time, space, and matter of the Incarnation. Let's divide each of these into three.

Past: "In the beginning was the Word."

Present: "The Word was made [became] flesh" (in our day).

Future: "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son... hath declared him." The apostle Paul, at the end of his life, said, "That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection..." (Phil. 3:10). That will be for the future -- to really know Him; today we actually know so little because we are finite.

Then look at space, divided into length, breadth and height.

Length: "In the beginning was the Word."

Breadth: He came down to this earth and was made flesh.

Height: No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father -- He has come from the heights to set Him before us.

Consider the divisions of matter: energy, motion, and phenomena.

Energy: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God -- that's energy. How did this universe come into existence? God spoke. Every rational person has to confront this problem of how this universe began. That is the reason evolution has been popular -- it offers to the natural man an explanation for the origin of the universe. You must have an explanation for it if you do any thinking at all. Where did it come from? Well, here is the answer: "In the beginning was the Word." God spoke. That is the first thing that happened. When God speaks, when the Word speaks, energy is translated into matter. What is atomic fission? It is matter translated back into energy -- poof! it disappears. Creation began with energy. In the beginning was the Word. The Word was with God. The Word was God.

Motion: The Word was made flesh. He came out of heaven's glory and He came to this earth.

Phenomena: The greatest phenomenon in this world is Jesus Christ. The wonders of the ancient world, the wonders to see in our day are nothing in comparison to the wonder of the Incarnation -- God became man!

These statements are bigger than any of us, and yet they are so simple. We have read them, probably memorized them, yet no man can plumb the depths of them. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.... And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.... No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him" (John 1:1, 14, 18).
These three verses are the great building blocks; now let us consider some of the cement that holds them together.

And things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made [John 1:3].

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Creator. Not only did He exist before Bethlehem, but He created the vast universe including the material out of which man constructed Bethlehem. All things were made by Him; He is the instrument of creation. Nothing came into existence without Him.

In him was life; and the life was the light of men [John 1:4].

Now we are confronted with something else -- two of the simplest things in the world: light and life. Zoe and phos are the two words in the original language. From zoe we get zoology, the study of life; and from phos we get photo or anything that is built on it, such as photograph -- it is light. These two things are so common that we take them for granted.

Life -- we see it everywhere. There may be a great deal of life right where you are at this moment. You go out in the woods and you see the same thing -- life. It greets you on every hand, but can you explain it? You see in the Sunday pictorials and the sensational magazines that men now have discovered the source of life.

But if you read them, you find that they have not found the source at all, though they think they are close to it. They put the microscope down on a green leaf. One moment they see that a little cell is arranged one way and is dead as a doornail. The next moment the thing is rearranged in another way, and it is alive. And then the thing starts growing and doubling, dividing and multiplying itself. Why does it do that? Life.

The other common thing is light. What is light? I listened to Irwin Moon try to explain it (and Irwin gave the best explanation I have heard), but when he got through, I was not sure if light is a real something or if it is just waves because they can cut the thing off and still light will go through. As you know, certain kinds of light will go through objects that would stop waves. What in the world is light?

You see, we are dealing with things that are fundamental, though men today with all their scientific gadgets know so little about them.
"In him was life" -- all life is in Jesus Christ. "In him was life; and the life was the light of men." You and I live in a universe that is spiritually dark. The fact of the matter is, it is physically dark to a certain degree. But God said, "...Let there be light..." (Gen. 1:3) and these light holders are placed about throughout His universe like street lights in a big city. We are told that when a man gets away from this earth a short distance, he is in total, absolute darkness, and it is frightening to be out where there is nothing from which the sun can be reflected.

Our little globe is out in a dark universe, yet that is nothing compared to the spiritual darkness that envelops it. When the sun disappears, there is physical darkness over the land; but twenty-four hours a day there is spiritual darkness here, awful spiritual darkness. Man does not know God; man is in rebellion against God; man is in sin that blinds him to God. In the Lord Jesus Christ there is life, and the life that He gives is the light of men. In fact, His life is the only thing that can kindle light in the heart of an individual.

An unregenerate man has no spiritual life within him. This is the reason that when you present to him Jesus Christ, he says, "I don't get it. I don't understand that at all."

I used to go down to the jail in Cleburne, Texas, and speak to the men. It was not a large jail and I could talk to them in a conversational tone. I would start off talking about football (because in Texas football is a religion!), and those hardened men would get enthusiastic about it. I talked also of other things and they were interested. Then I would turn the conversation to something spiritual, and I could see the darkness come over their faces. I might just as well have been talking to corpses.

And that is what they were -- men dead in trespasses and sins. This world today is in spiritual darkness, and the Lord Jesus Christ has brought the only light there is in the world. He is the light. "In him was life; and the life was the light of men."

And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not [John 1:5].

That word "comprehend" is an unfortunate translation. And a wiseacre did not help it by rendering it, "and the darkness was not able to put it out." That is no translation at all. The word in the Greek is katelaben, meaning actually "to take down." It is the picture of a secretary to whom the boss is giving dictation, and she stops and says, "I can't take that down. I am not able to take it down." The light shines in darkness and the darkness is not able to take it in. That is it exactly. Someone said to him, "Boy, was I in darkness before I received Christ! And I don't know why I didn't see." Well, that is it: you were in darkness and you did not see. The darkness just cannot take it in.


Now this is something quite interesting, and it is not true of physical light. You go into a dark room, and the minute you switch on the light, the darkness leaves, it disappears. Darkness and light cannot exist together physically. The moment you bring light in, darkness is gone. The minute light is taken out, darkness will come right back in. But spiritual light and darkness exist together.

Sometimes there is a husband who is saved and a wife who is unsaved -- or vice versa. Here is a believer working next to another man who says, "What do you mean when you talk about being a Christian? I do the best I can. Am I not a Christian?" There you have light and darkness side by side and the darkness just cannot take it in. That is exactly what is said here, "The light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not."

He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not [John 1:10].

That was the tragedy -- the world was in darkness, spiritual darkness, and did not know Him. Even today we are seeing the rise of atheism and unbelief, and we will see it more and more in the days that lie ahead. A great many people do not seem to recognize that unbelief and atheism go naturally with the natural man.

Somebody says to me, "Oh, did you read in the paper what Dr. So-and-So of a certain seminary wrote?" Yes, I read it. "Well, isn't it awful?" No, I do not think so. He would upset my apple cart if he said that he believed the Bible because he is an unbeliever by his own statement. He says that he does not believe in being born again, that he does not believe he has to receive Christ in order to be saved. Now I do not expect that man to say he believes the Bible. That would be absolutely contrary to his statements.

The so-called theologians and theological professors who espouse the "God is dead movement" present us with the preposterous, untenable claim that they are Christian atheists! Obviously atheism precludes the possibility of being Christian, yet unbelief has moved into our seminaries and pulpits across the land. The world does not know Him.

He came unto his own [his own things], and his own [people] received him not [John 1:11].
He came into His own universe but His own people did not receive Him.

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name [John 1:12].
"But as many as received him, to them gave he power." The word power is not dunamis power like dynamite, physical power, but exousian power which is delegated power, authority. "But as many as received him, to them gave he the authority to become the sons of God [children, tekna of God], even to them that believe on his name."

Notice that this is for "them that believe on his name." And always with the word "believe" there is a preposition. You see, faith, as the Bible uses it, is not just head knowledge. Many people ask, "You mean all that I have to do is to say I believe?" Yes, that is all you have to do, but let's see what that implies. With the verb "to believe" there is always a preposition -- sometimes en (in), sometimes eis (into), or sometimes epi (upon). You must believe into, in, or upon Jesus Christ.

Let me illustrate with a chair. I am standing beside a chair and I believe it will hold me up, but it is not holding me up. Why? Because I have only a head knowledge. I just say, "Yes, it will hold me up." Now suppose I believe into the chair by sitting in it.

See what I mean? I am committing my entire weight to it and it is holding me up. Is Christ holding you up? Is He your Savior? It is not a question of standing to the side and saying, "Oh, yes, I believe Jesus is the Son of God." The question is have you trusted Him, have you believed into Him, are you resting in Him? This chair is holding me up completely. And at this moment Christ is my complete Savior. I am depending on Him; I am resting in Him.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.


29A. Lift Up Your Heads, Luke 21:7, 2Timothy 3:1

by Bro. L. Richardson, 32 min

Luke 21:7-8 (KJV)

7 And they asked him, saying, Master, but when shall these things be? and what sign will there be when these things shall come to pass?

8 And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them.

Paul Warns Timothy of Times of Stress

2 Timothy 3:1-9 (KJV)

1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

6 For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,

7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

8 Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.

9 But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was.

============================================

J. Vernon McGee's Thru the Bible Commentary

Apostasy In The Last Days (3:1-9)

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

"This knows also." Paul is telling Timothy something very important that he wants him to know. He is telling him what to expect and what is to be the future of the church -- it is not a very bright future for the organized church.

"The last days" is a technical term used in several places in the New Testament; it speaks of the last days of the church, immediately preceding the rapture of the church. The last days of the church are not the same as the last days of the nation Israel, which is mentioned repeatedly in the Old Testament. In the Old Testament the last days are called the "end of the age" or "the time of the end," which is the Great Tribulation period. That is quite different from the last days of the church, which precede the rapture of the church.

The apostasy that began in the church in Paul's day will continue. Paul warned the church at Ephesus that false leaders would enter the church after his decease. He told them in Acts 20:29-30: "For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them." They won't give out the Word of God but will fleece the congregations. Believe me, false teachers shear the sheep pretty close!

"Perilous times shall come," which means grievous or desperate times are coming. That doesn't look like the conversion of the world, does it? It doesn't appear that the church is going to bring in the Millennium or is going to convert the world. The Bible doesn't teach that it will. That is the pipe dream of a great many idealists and a great many folk who have lived with their heads ostrich-like in the sand and have never faced reality.

Instead, notice what will be coming in the last days. We have nineteen different descriptions given in the next few verses. It is an ugly brood, but we want to look at them because they present the best scriptural picture of what is happening today. We are, I believe, moving into the last days of the church. My reason for saying this is that the things mentioned in these verses have appeared today. If you look back in the history of the church, you could certainly find some of these things in evidence, but I don't think you could ever find a period in which all of them are so manifested as they are today. I believe we are now in these "perilous" days which are described in this section. I don't know how much longer it will last, but I'm sure it's going to get worse, not better.

For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy.

Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despiers of those that are good,

Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God [2Tim. 3:2-4].

There are nineteen words or phrases used to describe the last days.

1. "Lovers of their own selves" -- self-lovers. This is very much in evidence in our culture today. An article by a newspaper correspondent who had covered Washington, D.C., for many years, noted that the one thing which has characterized Washington for the past twenty years is that those who are in position want the reporters to praise them. In fact, they insist upon it. That is not confined to Washington. Hollywood is probably one of the greatest places for scratching each other's backs. One actor will publicly say something nice about another, then the other one will return the favor. You find this in every walk of life. Even schools have self-love. If a man boosts a school, then the school boosts him by giving him an honorary degree. Also, you can find this in the churches. Paul goes on to say, in chapter 4, verse 3, that congregations will follow teachers "having itching ears." These teachers want their ears scratched -- they want to be complimented. To be complimented, you have to compliment. So the teachers compliment their congregations and their boards of officers. They don't tell the people that they are sinners and need a Savior; they tell them how wonderful they are. It is interesting that the love of self characterizes our contemporary society. Probably there has never been a time when it has been so common.

2. "Covetous" means lovers of money. This follows self-love, because lovers of self become lovers of money. This old nature likes to have a lot of money spent on it. Remember that Paul said in 1Timothy 6:10, "...the love of money is the root of all evil...." Money itself is not bad. The problems come in our attitude toward our money. Covetousness reveals itself not only in the acquisition of wealth but also in the use of it.

3. "Boasters." That word has in it the idea of swaggerers. You can sometimes tell a proud man by the way he walks. He walks like a peacock; he swaggers.

4. "Proud" means haughty.

5. "Blasphemers" is better translated railers. I remember the story of a fellow whose wife said to him, "Everyone in town is talking about the Smiths' quarrel. Some of them are taking her part and some are taking his part." He chimed in, "Well, I suppose a few eccentric individuals are minding their own business." Well, railers include those who are always poking their noses into somebody else's business.

6. "Disobedient to parents." Certainly this is self-evident. Oh, the thousands of boys and girls and teenagers who are in complete rebellion against their parents!

7. "Unthankful." Many people receive kindnesses from others without even thinking of thanking them. And they accept everything from God without ever returning thanks to Him.

8. "Unholy" is profane. They are actually against God in their conversation and in their manner of life.

9. "Without natural affection" means having abnormal relationships. We are living in a day when homosexuality is being accepted as normal conduct. Yet in Romans 1:24 Paul clearly states, "Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves." Humanity sinks to its lowest level when it accepts homosexuality.

10. "Trucebreakers" are people who are impossible to get along with. They are irreconcilable -- they won't let you get along with them. I recall seeing a little sign in a restaurant out in West Texas which read, "We can't please everybody, but we try." Well, you can't please everybody; there are folk who are impossible to please.

11. "False accusers" certainly abound today!

12. "Incontinent" means without self-control. That, again, characterizes a large segment of our contemporary society.

13. "Fierce" means savage. In our day the city streets have become asphalt jungles. Many of them are unsafe even in the daytime.

14. "Despisers of those that are good" is better translated haters of the good. We see evidence of that abroad!

15. "Traitors" are betrayers. There are some folk whom you don't dare trust.

16. "Heady" means reckless.

17. "Highminded" means blinded by pride or drunk with pride.

18. "Lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God." This actually characterizes mankind in our day. Never has there been a time when so much money has been spent in order to provide pleasure. Look at the athletic and entertainment events today. These are the things that are attracting millions of people. That is exactly the route Rome took when it went down. The mob was provided with grain and circuses, and then Rome fell. That same thing is happening today. I have always loved to participate in athletics, but I could never understand this type of athletics that just sits and beholds. I never thought that it was very exciting to go out to the coliseum and sit with 85,000 people to watch twenty-two men working for $25,000 (or more) apiece. Of course I would like to be out there myself, but I am not interested in watching them as much as I would be in watching a ditchdigger because he is not as money hungry. I don't blame any man for making as much money as he can, but the point is that billions of dollars are being spent for entertainment because men are lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God.

Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away [2Tim. 3:5].

19. "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof." They go through the rituals of religion but lack life and reality.

"From such turn away" means that the believer is to avoid them. Let me ask you a question: If you are in a dead, cold, liberal church, and you are a true believer, what are you doing there when the Word of God says to avoid those things? All across this country there are wonderful pastors who are faithfully preaching the Word of God. Why aren't you supporting and standing with these fine men?

For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,

Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth [2Tim. 3:6-7].

"Silly women" means silly women of both sexes. There are some people who have attended Bible conferences for years, but they don't know any more about the Word of God now than they did when they began. They have never matured. Their lives are not changed. Friend, if you find yourself in that category today, get down on your knees and ask God to forgive you!

Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith [2Tim. 3:8].

"Jannes and Jambres" apparently were the names of the two magicians called in by Pharaoh when Moses began the miracles and the plagues came upon Egypt. We would never have known the names of these magicians if Paul hadn't given them to us. Of course, that opens a great reservoir of speculation as to where Paul got those names. The simple answer is that the names were revealed to him by the Spirit of God. I don't think that the specific names add much information to the account, but it does reveal that Paul knew their names and that the magicians were real individuals who did withstand Moses. You can read about them in the seventh chapter of Exodus.

The account in Exodus reveals that Satan has power, supernatural power, and also that he is a great little imitator -- he imitates the things that God does. Jannes and Jambres were able to perform miracles by the power of Satan. Moses did them by the power of God. This is, I believe, the reason reference is made to them here. We need to understand in our day that Satan can imitate the power of God. John warns us in 1John 4:1, "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world." Satan can imitate the power of God. In our day I'm afraid that in many places a manifestation of power is misunderstood as coming from God when it really comes from Satan.

"Men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith." Paul is saying that men on the contemporary scene, like Jannes and Jambres, have corrupt or depraved minds. "Reprobate concerning the faith" means that they have discarded the faith -- rejected it totally. We have had a classic example of this within the past few years. There was a bishop of the Episcopal church out here on the West Coast, a man apparently of tremendous ability, but he and his family were delving into that which was spiritualistic, bordering on the supernatural. As nearly as I can tell, this man rejected the great truths of Scripture, and he made a trip to Palestine in an attempt to disprove some of the great truths of the Word of God. Well, rather than disproving any of them, he certainly proved some of them -- and this is one of them. A very strange thing happened out there in a wilderness area for the man to die as he did. I don't propose to offer any explanation, other than he is a noteworthy example of one who once professed to believe the Word of God but became, as the Scripture says, a reprobate, a castaway. He discarded the faith.

But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was [2Tim. 3:9].

The experience of that Episcopal bishop should be a tremendous warning to Christians. You can dabble in spiritism if you want to, but you are toying with something that is dangerous. There is a manifestation of satanic power about us in our day. It is an anomaly that our crassly materialistic age, which had rejected the supernatural altogether, is discovering the reality of the supernatural, although much of it is satanic, of course.

Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee.


28. Daniel, A Man Greatly Believed, Daniel 10:11-12. by Bro. Lawrence Richardson, 31 min.

Daniel 10:11-12 (KJV)
11  And he said unto me, O Daniel, a man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak unto thee, and stand upright: for unto thee am I now sent. And when he had spoken this word unto me, I stood trembling.
12  Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words.

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28. Daniel, A Man Greatly Believed, Daniel 10:11-12. by Bro. Lawrence Richardson, 31 min.

Daniel 10:11-12 (KJV)
11  And he said unto me, O Daniel, a man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak unto thee, and stand upright: for unto thee am I now sent. And when he had spoken this word unto me, I stood trembling.
12  Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words.

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27. "Complete in Him" 5-10-2020 pm Church Service via Facebook

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27. "A Mother’s Faith And The Response of Jesus"

Matthew 15:21-28

Message by Bro. Lawrence Richardson, 24 min. Church Service, Morning, 5-10-2020 am,

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26. The Lifestyle Of A Christian. Psalm 116, 27 min; Wed. 5-6-2020, Message by Bro. L. Richardson.

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25. 5-3-2020 Sunday, pm, GBC Remove Service by Bro. L. Richardson.

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24. 5-3-2020 Sunday, AM, GBC Remote Service, Message by Bro. Lawrence Richardson, Message on Genesis 18:1-15; Primarily on Verse 14. "Is There Anything Too Hard for the Lord?" 30 minutes

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24. 5-3-2020 Sunday, AM, GBC Remote Service, Message by Bro. Lawrence Richardson, Message on Genesis 18:1-15; Primarily on Verse 14. "Is There Anything Too Hard for the Lord?" 30 minutes

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23. 4-29-2020, Wed. GBC Remote Service. Message by Bro. Lawrence Richardson, Prov. 27:1. To Hear Message Only. Read Message


22, 4-26-2020 Sunday, GBC Remote Service, Message by Bro L. Richardson, Psalm 25:17, "The Troubles of my heart are enlarged" 36 min.

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21. 4-15-2020 Wed. Evening, GBC Remote Service, Message by Bro L. Richardson, 32 min

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20. Sunday AM, GBC Remote Service, Message by Bro L. Richardson, 32 min.

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19. 4-8-2020 Wed. GBC Remote Service, with Message by Bro L. Richardson, Acts 1:8, "Last Words of Christ on Earth" & Revelation 22:20, "Surley I Come Quickly", 29 min.

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18. Wed. Evening, Remote Service, with Bro. L. Richardson, 4-22-2020, 27 min.

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17. Sunday Evening Remote Service, with Bro. L. Richardson, 4-19-2020, 20 MIN, video

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16. DOES HELL AFFECT YOU? LUKE 16:19-31; by BRO JUSTUS MIZE, MISSIONARY TO NEPAL, 3-8-2020 am, 17 min.

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15. TRUTHS IN PSALM 100, PS 100:1-5; by BRO DUSTIN BROWN, MISSIONARY TO TURKEY, 3-1-2020 pm, 36 min

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14. LOVE THE BROKEN ONES, JOHN 4:1-7; by BRO DUSTIN BROWN, MISSIONARY TO TURKEY, 3-1-2020 am, 45 min

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13. LEPERSY, LUKE 17:11-19; by BRO L. RICHARDSON, 2-26-2020, 32 min

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12. THE LORD IS GRACIOUS, I PETER 2:1-12; 2-23-2020 am, by BRO L. RICHARDSON, 40 min

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11. DAVID'S NEED, OUR NEED, PS 27, by BRO L. RICHARDSON, 2-19-2020, 32 min

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10. THE CAPTIAN OF OUR SALVATION, HEB 2:7-11; by BRO L. RICHARDSON, 2-16-2020, 38 min

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9. THAT YE MAY KNOW, by BRO L. RICHARDSON, 2-2-2020 pm, 40 min

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8. Jesus Is Coming, What Will We Do? by Bro. L. Richardson, 2-2-2020, Sunday, AM. 43 min

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7. Nehemiah & Prayer, Neh 1:4-11, by Bro L. Richardson, 1-29-2020, Wed. 40 min.

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6. Without Faith, What Then?, Hebrews 11 & 12, by Bro. L. Richardson. 1-26-2020 pm, 36 min.

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5. A JOYFUL HEART, PROVERBS 17:22, by BRO. LAWRENCE RICHARDSON, 1-26-2020,

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4. WE ARE KNOWN BY OUR LOVE, JOHN 13:31-35, by BRO L. RICHARDSON, 1-19-2020, 37min.

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3. CHARACTERISTICS OF A MISSION MINDED CHURCH, ACTS 13:1-3, by BRO JASON REINHARDT, MISSIONARY TO PERU, 1-12-2020, 41 min

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2. EVEN SO COME, REV 22:10-21, by BRO L. RICHARDSON, 1-8-2020, 35 min.

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1. CHOICES, PHILIPPIANS 1:15-25, by BRO LAWRENCE RICHARDSON, 1-5-2020, 42 min

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