When a man gets what he deserves, he is devastated,
When a man gets what he wants, he wants more,
When a man gets what God wants for him, he is complete.
This little segment is lifted from a sermon I wrote and preached about the Rich Man and Lazarus:
Hell is God's response to the unforgiven violation of His Holiness. For God to be just and righteous, hell must be equally as horrible as heaven is wonderful. Those in heaven are granted residence there because they do not violate God's holiness. The only way not to be guilty of violating His Holiness is to come to Him through the one Person who satisfies His anger toward sin, and that one Person is Jesus Christ, the propitiation for the sins of the whole world. 1 John 2:2. For God to grant the rich man even one drop of water to relieve him would be for God to violate His own Holiness by overlooking sin even to the small degree of one drop of water. His nature will not allow Him to do such a thing. The Holiness of God is a delicate thing. It is easily violated and anything that violates it is a hellish thing.
Early Childhood Instruction:
Children learn that their religion (faith) is not really all that important by watching their parents. They are more interested in the child's soccer games than in their religion. Parents are much more dedicated to getting them to soccer practice than to church. Worship, Bible Study, and Christian fellowship stand in line behind sports, hobbies and such. Parents sometime say "you WILL go to school today! Or, they will say, "you will go to baseball practice today. Do you want to play?" "Then, you have got to practice." But, those same parents will say, "well, I don't want to force them to go to church." "I don't want to turn them off to religion." Parents have an obligation to teach their children that all immorality is wrong. Godly morality is not up for negotiation. It is not relative.
If one thinks the church has compromised to this point, just wait to see what the church of the future will look like. The church is largely made up of people who are unsaved.
Erma Bombeck, a Jewish entertainer said: "When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would have not a single bit of talent left and could say, 'I used everything you gave me.'"
"Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the Creed of Ignorance, the Corpse of envy. Its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery." Winston Churchill
Many people quote...."Man looks on the outside but God looks on the heart." So, is a person saying that God never looks on the outside as well as the inside? I think that many people excuse themselves because they forget that God has expectations for the outside also.
God loves you whether you like it or not!
Knowing Jesus and being committed to Him are two different things.
In Philippians 4:13, "all things" means just that...ALL THINGS. It does not mean all things except the things I can't do. A lack of talent is not an issue and excuse. A lack of abilities is not an issue. The Holy Spirit does not recognize or honor the words: "I can't". A lack of help and encouragement is not an issue. A lack of resources is not going to dim the vision and stop us because "all things" means just that. The only thing that "all things" will not cover is lack of faith and commitment. Remember, the Holy Spirit never uses the words: "I can't".
Why is it that people always assume that any life which might be found in the universe would be far superior to life on earth? Why is it that human beings are always assumed inferior? I think it is an effort to discredit God's creation as being second best. It is a humanistic, atheistic attempt to say that the crown of God creation really isn't equal to what evolution could produce. It is an attempt to displace God as the Initiator and Sustainer of the universe.
Think on this: One million seconds is 11.57 days. One Billion seconds is 31.69 years. One Trillion seconds is 31,690 years or roughly 32,000 years. Time is an interesting thing. God says that there is a time for everything. It is pre-planned and figured out exactly so that everything happens at the proper time. We all have the same amount of time in the coming year assuming that we live throughout the full year. We have 31,536,000 seconds to use up in the coming year. The truth of the matter is: All the time you really have is what you possess right now; this moment. One second ago is gone into history. You can't touch it or change it. Yesterday is gone; speeding down the highway of history at the speed of time. You do not and may not possess the moment approaching you from the future. When it passes it is gone. Tomorrow is speeding toward you. You may see it or not. But, all the time you really have is the moment you are in right now. You are not promised another.
We who preach the gospel must not think of ourselves as public relations agents sent to establish good will between Christ and the world. We must not imagine ourselves commissioned to make Christ acceptable to big business, the press, the world of sports or modern education. We are not diplomats but prophets and our message is not a compromise but an ultimatum. A.W. Tozier
If God's Grace is irresistible, then why is there a hell?
The basic thrust of most church programs in today's world appeal to the NOW. Give me something fun NOW. Such churches are no more than social organizations designed for the satisfaction of the client, not the edification of the Christian. In fact, today's church is more of a Christian organization that a Christian organism. The early church functioned as an organism. The modern church looks and acts more like a Christian social club.
If you take "Holy" off the Bible and holiness out of the church; bring God down a notch or two, then the world don't look quite so bad." A quote from my friend Dr. Tom Crites.
All of God's activity was absolutely unnecessary if man can save himself! As long as man is searching for God through some humanly conceived worship system, then God is unknowable because He is beyond man's ability to find out about Him. He is knowable only when He reveals Himself to man and comes to him. That is why other religions will never find God. If, as some say, "we all worship the same God", then they need to ask this question: "Why has He chosen to come to man through only one way...Jesus?" They need to ask: "Why hasn't God come to us in our religious system instead of remaining an unknowable entity we are striving to find and have a relationship with?"
The Church is not a charity. If people think they are supporting a charity then they won't tithe as God says to do. They will give out of disposable income to a "charity" rather than obey God with the tithe.
It is a lot less trouble to "come out of the closet" than it is to clean it up.
In times past, Children went out to play. Then, they didn't want to go out and play and now, you can't let them go out to play.
"Minister to" has been replaced by "satisfy."
Just when did Christianity get to the point that it needed to "court" the world or needed to "appeal" in order to be acceptable and relevant? It has always been relevant but not always acceptable. This is a very recent development. The message is denigrated when it is "marketed" like other products.
The right to make a choice without being called discriminatory is fast vanishing. If anyone's feelings were hurt by your choice then you were discriminatory or racist.
A recent news article said: "Only a technological revolution can save the earth." Man will always look to himself and he is looking the wrong way. God is not even in sight to such people.
Darkness is the antithesis of light. It cannot exist until the light is turned off and it is in total command until the light is turned on. Darkness is overcome at the speed of light. It flees at the most minute bit of light. Darkness penetrates nothing but is penetrated itself by light. It is very weak and is dependent on the lack of even one photon of light. Darkness is a dictator in that anything requiring light is held at bay until it is overcome. Light is a liberator. All that has been held at b ay by darkness is now able to be operative. Light frees up, darkness binds up.
Worship should be different from the world's approach because we are not doing the same thing. Worship is not for entertainment. It is not human-centric but God-centric. For church leaders to institute the world's approach in worship is for them to say to their people that they are doing the same sort of thing that the world does in its entertainment so we have to use their methods.
The music we use in church is not the world's music but who says it should be?
Worship should be different from what the world does because of Who we worship. Worship services should not be like what the world does. They should be different with a different focus and purpose. Worship services must be held to a higher standard because of Who we are worshipping.
A Broken Spirit... "The spirit is the strongest thing about us. It can see a man through many trials and ills. But when the spirit is broken…it's all over."
The life in you is a divine spark given by God. It is not locked into history and time as your body is. All historical things have an ending. Such is the body. But the spirit lives on because it is derived from Above. It is outside of time and history and as such will live forever. When one dies we deal with the historical, time bound part of that person and hold a funeral and burial. But, they are not here. They have escaped history and time and now reside in the realm where time does not matter. It does not exist in eternity. God tells us that there is something more and at physical death we find out that there is MUCH more.
The primary theology of American religious teenagers is "Moralistic Therapeutic deism." Moralistic...(set of rules to follow), Therapeutic...(about their experience and felt needs.), deism...(about a god who is distant but there as a fallback.) AFA Journal, Stacy Long, author.
How Many? A poem by Wm. F. Harrell
How many's there on the head of that pin?
Maybe a million or it might be just ten.
Men study and fuss about such things,
when they've never even seen one of these beings.
Does it really matter how many there be
Since only one angel can surely handle thee.
God PURPOSE for me is to be Christ-like.
God's GRACE is sufficient for me,
God's WORD is the final right answer.
(Written by "King" Little)
A newscast told of a man who had shot four of his dogs and killed them. He was arrested and jailed. So....one can kill a dog and be put in jail but they can kill a human baby in its mother's womb, get paid for doing it and walk off scot-free!
God turned on the Light in Jesus. Now, you control the rheostat, a device for controlling the intensity of the light in your personal life. What we consider "small" sins produce huge consequences because ANY sin violates the Holiness of God.
The Glory of worship in our day is gone because it is sacrificed on the altar of expediency and compromise. I just want to hear a REAL Biblical sermon. Real preaching is vanishing from the scene in today's world.
The spirit is the strongest thing about us. It can see a man through many trials and ills. But, when the spirit is broken...it's all over.
One cannot keep the church pure and obedient if they employ the world's methods to try to build it. A distinct charge of a pastor is to keep the church pure and obedient. After all, it IS the body of Christ!
The issue is not for you to be strong enough to resist sin. The issue is for you to be DEAD to it.
Salting the meat with salt that has lost its savor, and turning the light way down low with a dimmer is what many preachers are doing today.
The earth rotates at 1040 mph at the equator. The earth is moving around the sun at the tremendous speed of 66,486 mph. Our solar system is moving around the Milky Way Galaxy at approximately 483,000 mph and the Milky Way Galaxy is moving through the universe at 1.3 million mph. So, sitting still, you are travelling at 1,883,526 mph through the universe.
The collective Intelligence of Congress belongs in a mental institution.
People go to worship the Lord of the universe dressed like they would not go to the Oval Office to see the President. When did we reach that state of affairs? When did the church become the venue to do things we wouldn't do if we knew the President was coming? I'll tell you when. It was when we began to cheapen our worship and bring it down to a level the world would like. That's when the church became the acceptable venue for things we would not do in places we see as more respectable. We have made jour worship a common thing.
Many is the day we would like more time
to do the things we would do;
But somehow we forget as the hours pass by
that we're all just Passing Through.
When tragedy comes and seems so cruel
as to steal a life that's not due;
It serves us well to remember the truth
that we're all just Passing Through.
"Life isn't about how to survive the storm but how to dance in the rain." I remember that when I was a little boy growing up that my mother would let us play out in the rain if there was no lightning or thunder. I remember how much fun it was to be outside, running, splashing and dancing around in a summer rain shower. Many or most people, on such a day were bemoaning the fact that their plans had been interrupted by the showers. But we saw it as an opportunity to be happy and contented. Life often has its rainstorms which interrupt what we think should be happening, but God, in His Word, tells us how to Dance in the Rain.
To give a person the right to worship as they desire is not the same as giving them validity. The Constitution guarantees a right....not validity.
A person may have a "successful" existence but still lose his life.
The righteous man knows he is a sinner. The wicked man thinks he is totally righteous.
Two things the evolutionists cannot answer: Where did the spirit of man come from and where did the moral conscience come from?
Money can buy perception but NOT reality.
When what you have is what you are then you are in deep trouble because one can lose what they have and then they see themselves as nothing and hope of life is lost.
Some people are "money poor." This is a phrase which means that those people are rich but all they really possess is their money. Money for the sake of money leaves one "money poor."
The "right to privacy" does not extend beyond one's secular life because God sees and knows everything. There is no right to privacy where God is concerned.
FLASH.....European scientists have scientifically demonstrated that children are smarter than Chimpanzees and Orangutans! I wonder how much money was spent on that revelation?
"Rights" are not the issue. There are no "rights" to do wrong. Something wrong might be permitted or made legal, but it is not a right. When something is made legal it does not necessarily mean that it suddenly becomes a right. True rights do not have to be made legal in a court ruling or by a law passed by legislature. If something has to be made legal by law, then it was not a "right" to begin with. The more we consider Christ in all our endeavors the more we will operate in the realm of true rights and not legalities.
Man wants to ignore the very person "by whom all things consist." So, therefore, "all things are falling apart."
People today think they can get "saved" and never break their worldly stride!
When you go to worship, you are coming before God and not the world. And, when you come before God you should be different from the world.
If God is the foundation of all truth and has truth as His character, then truth IS absolute because there is NO variance with God. He is absolute Himself so for a person to hold to the view that truth is not absolute but relative, is for them to admit that they are willing to live outside of God's definition of Himself.
It is a dangerous thing to be one of Calvinist crowd because if you are, you can never be sure.
Large evangelistic churches have a "mega church" conference. The Calvinists have a conference and it is called a "micro church" conference.
How can one grieve the Holy Spirit if he has no free will? Did God ordain that they would grieve him? "And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God by which you are sealed until the day of redemption." Eph. 4:30
Doubt is a product of a free will. If the will is not free then why would God ever will that we doubt Him and His Work? A doubting mind is dealing with the value or worthiness of a decision or position. Did that person make the right choice? The fact that a choice exists strongly implies a free will to make the choice. If there is no free will and the "choice" was predetermined then it is no longer a choice.
“To those who have fought the battle, freedom has a flavor the protected will never know.” Matt Bridges, former Marine. Spoken at The Freedom Gallery opening at Abraham Baldwin College.