Thursday, July 11, 2013
Some Outlines in the Sermon On The Mount
Making A Lasting Impact Investing for the Future Matthew 6:19-24) Your life has eternal purpose.
Your life has eternal potential.
You must decide whether you are going to indulge your life resources in yourself or invest your life resources in eternal purposes
It takes faith to invest your life in eternal treasure rather than indulging your life in temporal pleasure.
A self-indulgent life is a wasted life.
Giving and Worship
Giving our offering is an act of worship because our money represents a distillation of our entire lives.
Giving our offering is an act of worship because it is a tangible expression of trust.
Giving our offering is an act of worship because it is a tangible expression of thanksgiving.
I. The Abuse Of Our Life-Investments (Mt. 6:19)
Accumulating "earthly treasures" gives a false sense of security.
Accumulating "earthly treasures" creates an insatiable desire for more. (Ecc. 5:10)
Accumulating "earthly treasures" is costly to maintain and protect.
II. The Assets Of Our Life-Investments
We all possess the asset of time. (Ecc. 5:15-17)
We all possess the asset of talents. (I Cor. 12:4-7)
We all possess the asset of treasures. (II Cor. 9:6-11)
III. The Action Of Our Life-Investments
We "lay up treasures" in heaven through service to people. (Mt. 25:31-46)
We "lay up treasures" in heaven through sharing the gospel. (Ph. 4:1; I Thess. 2:19-20)
We "lay up treasures" in heaven through our steadfast commitment to God's purpose for our lives (II Tim. 4:6-8)
We "lay up treasures" in heaven through stewardship of our money. (Mt. 6:21)
IV. The Affection Of Our Life-Investments (Mt. 6:21)
How you spend your money tells the truth about your love for Christ....no matter what you say.
Proverbs 4:23-27 The Law of Life In Old Testament psychology and theology the heart was the center of the human personality, intellectual activity, and thought life. The New Testament word "mind" is interchangeable with the Old Testament usage of the word " heart." Consider:
I. The Centrality of the Thought Life (v. 23) This emphasizes two things: 1) The Importance of Thinking (v. 23) Only something of true value or importance needs to be guarded. God has made us in His image: to think, to love, and to act. 2) The Immensity of Thinking (v. 23) The exercise of thinking suggests infinity and eternity. Who can measure the boundaries of thought when we consider the giant minds of the centuries?
II. The Consequences of the Thought Life (v. 23) To think is to shape character and conduct. The passage before us illustrates this perfectly. Having declared that "our of the heart are the issues of life," Solomon goes on to reveal that our thought life determines: 1) The Purity of What We Say in Life (v. 24) If the fountainhead of the thought life is pure, the stream of speech life will be pure. If the thought life is defiled, so will be conversation. In other words, what is heard is only a sample of what really exists within the mind. 2) The Clarity of What We See in Life (v. 25) When a man has thought out life's purpose and problems, he knows how and where to look and is seldom bothered with side issues. In New Testament language, it is looking to Jesus (Heb. 12:2), seeing Him in every situation of life, and therefore triumphing by faith. How we
think determines what we see. 3) The Mastery of What We Seek in Life (vv. 26-27 Once the thinking is right, the pathway we tread is not only open to us, but ordered for us. The thought life matters, not only because of its centrality but also because of its consequence in our daily experience. III. The Control of Our Thought Life (vv. 23) If our thought life is to be all that God desires for us, then we must learn the secret of controlled thinking. The key to such controlled thinking is clearly set forth in the New Testament. It involves: 1) The Mind Under the Discipline of the Son of God (v. 23) If we are to know the conquest of evil thinking and the control of good thinking, then our minds must be brought under the discipline of the Son of God. The Savior's disposition, thought patterns, and mental outlook must replace our imaginations, high thoughts, and every thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God. 2) The Mind Under the Direction of the Word of God (Phil. 4:8) If the Son of God disciplines our thought life, then it follows that the Word of God must direct our thought life. We are told to think on spiritual, moral, cultural, and practical things. In the area of practical things there are many things in the world which can be redeemed, transformed, and employed for the Christian gospel because of thinking which is under the discipline of the Son of God and the direction of the Word of God. But the final secret of all great thinking is that our minds must be brought under the discipline of the Son of God and the direction of the Word of God.
The Critical and Hypercritical Matthew 7:1-6
1. Apply Wise Discrimination
6, 15-20, krino means select, seperate, choose, determine, evaluate or condemn. Context determines limits. 1Cor 215 But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one. 1Jn 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.
2. Avoid Wicked Condemnation
Romans2:1 Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things.2 But we know that the judgment of God is according to truth against those who practice such things.3 And do you think this, O man, you who judge those practicing such things, and doing the same, that you will escape the judgment of God?
We Are Critical Of Others Because Of Our Iniquity
Lk 18 Pharisee and Publican, People find what they are looking for.. Pussycat, where have you been? I've been to London to visit the Queen. What did you there? Looking for mice, found mice! Send a buzzard and it'll find carion!
We Are Critical Of Others Because Of Our Insecurity Procrestis's bed
We Are Critical Of Others Because Of Our Ignorance Plane trip in Denver, biscuits, man sast down and ate my biscuits, left 1/3rd! indignant. till I found my bag in carryon luggage!
1Cor 4:3 But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by a human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. 4 For I know nothing against myself, yet I am not justified by this; but He who judges me is the Lord. 5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord comes, who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness and reveal the counsels of the hearts. Then each one's praise will come from God.
Romans 14:4 Who are you to judge another's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for God is able to make him stand.
We Are Critical Of Others Because Of Our Insensitivity Jn.3:17 "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. i.e. Zacheus Michelangelo's last Supper, enemy's face...
3. Appreciate Willing Cooperation
Highway to Heaven
Matthew 7:13 "Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 "Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.
1. There Is A Decision To Face
A. There Is The Freedom to Decide
B. There Is The Forcing of A Decision
C. There Are the Fruits Of A Decision
2. There Is A Direction To Follow
A. A Disciplined Way
B. A Different Way
C. A Delightful Way
3. There Is A Destiny To Find
A. A Fearful Destiny For Some
B. A Fixed Destiny For All
Matthew 7: 15-23 Beware The Wolves
Satan's methods: Persecution (Romania, 2nd baptist ch. Timosea, Ceausescu); Or Infiltration: 2 Cor 11:13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ.14 And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Acts 20:29 "For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 "Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.
1. The Fleece They Wear Jude 11 Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.
The Perverter Cain Offering 2 types of religion, man-made/Christ made.
The Prostituter Balaam Num.24 24,000 d. 2Peter 2:1-3 orthodox but greedy 2 Cor2:17 For we are not, as so many, peddling the word of God; for prestige, popularity or power.
The Protester Korah. Titus 3:10,11
2. The Fruit They Bear Prov.30:12 There is a generation that is pure in its own eyes, Yet is not washed from its filthiness.13 There is a generation; oh, how lofty are their eyes! And their eyelids are lifted up.
Make Sure You Are Right In The Academics
Make Sure You Are Right In The Actions
Make Sure You Are Right In The Attitudes
3. The Fate They Share
Their Delusion Expressed 21 confident academics, actions.. Hos 8:2 Israel will cry to Me, 'My God, we know You!' 3 Israel has rejected the good; James 2:19
Their Delusion Exposed Lord!? Matt21:28-31"What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first.. Matt 12:50"Whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother" Lawlessness Such people preach a gospel of antinomianism
Their Delusion Expelled their defence, the verdict, no appeal. known 2Tim 2:19 Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: "The Lord knows those who are His," and, "Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity." Never Jn10:27 My sheep..
Psa 26v2"Test me, O Lord, and try me, examine my heart and my mind," or Psalm 139: "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."
Matthew 6:13 Victorious Praying
13 And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
1. Recognise The Sinister Person of Evil
Created In Perfection
Ezekiel 28:11 Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 12 "Son of man, take up a lamentation for the king of Tyre, and say to him, 'Thus says the Lord GOD: "You were the seal of perfection, Full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. 13 You were in Eden, the garden of God; Every precious stone was your covering: The sardius, topaz, and diamond, Beryl, onyx, and jasper, Sapphire, turquoise, and emerald with gold. The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes Was prepared for you on the day you were created. 14 "You were the anointed cherub who covers; I established you; You were on the holy mountain of God; You walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones. 15 You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, Till iniquity was found in you.
Corrupted In Pride
Ezekiel 28:16 "By the abundance of your trading You became filled with violence within, And you sinned; Therefore I cast you as a profane thing Out of the mountain of God; And I destroyed you, O covering cherub, From the midst of the fiery stones. 17 "Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; You corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor; I cast you to the ground, I laid you before kings, That they might gaze at you.
Isaiah 14:12 "How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, You who weakened the nations! 13 For you have said in your heart: 'I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation On the farthest sides of the north; 14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.' 15 Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, To the lowest depths of the Pit. 16 "Those who see you will gaze at you, And consider you, saying: 'Is this the man who made the earth tremble, Who shook kingdoms,
Continues In Power
The apostle Paul wrote about the warfare we wage in Ephesians 6:10-18:
Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Our struggle is against Satan and his demonic hordes. Did you know that there is a demonic hierarchy, much like a military or governmental organization, even now in place, organized to promote the agenda of Satan himself? It is true! When Ephesians 6 speaks of rulers, powers, and forces it is referring to the organizational structure of Satan's hierarchy. The word which is translated "world forces" is kosmokratoras. A more recognizable anglicized rendering would be cosmocrats. Many, like Professor F. F. Bruce, think that these terms refer to the hierarchy of fallen angels. i.e the angel-prince of Persia who hindered the angelic messenger sent to Daniel.
Rev 12:3 And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads.
4 His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth.
The demonic cosmocrats of Satan's army are deployed everywhere in our culture. Infiltrating every segment of society, both secular and ecclesiastical, their one purpose is to destroy God's work. Directly and indirectly, they attack God's work. They are after you and your walk with God. They are after your family and your relationships with others. They attack you through your emotions and your circumstances. And they do not sleep. It is a very real and personal struggle. In our own strength we are over-matched. To attempt to fight in our own strength would be like attacking a forest fire with a squirt gun. It would be like attempting to slay
a lion with a fly swatter. To attempt to defeat the devil in our own strength is like attempting to catch an elephant with a butterfly net. So we are exhorted to be strong in the Lord and operate in the strength of his might.
Condemned To Perdition
Rev 20:10 The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
2. Realise The Seductive Power Of Evil
And do not lead us into temptation,
Satan is Malicious and Diligent
Rev 12:12 Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time."
1Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.
He Tempts Us
Timely (upon conversion, when unemployed, when under stress, upon experiencing blessings, when alone, when at hour of death,)
With Partial Truths In His Mouth
3. You Must Rely On The Sovereign's Protection From Evil
The Ground Of Our Victory
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
1Peter 5:9 Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.10 But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. 11 To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
The Grace For Our Victory
Therefore, take up the full armor of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming missiles of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.
The Pieces of The Armour
The Placing of The Armour
The Position Of The Armour
"Supernatural Forgiveness" -
Corrections are the most read section in the newspaper. We all have to correct wrongs in our life - to make right a wrong. A good pilot needs to monitor his altitude and his attitude. The attitude is a flight term for whether the plane is climbing/descending - banking left/right - or flying level. There are controls that monitor various aspects of the plane's attitude. Today we look at one of the controls in our life that help us monitor our attitude and maintain stability. The spirit of forgiveness. The head of a large British hospital said: "I could dismiss half my patients tomorrow if they could be assured of forgiveness." It's no wonder a well-known author wrote: "Nothing greater can happen to a human being than to be forgiven." It's the greatest gift we can give to someone . . . and to ourselves. Today we discover four essentials we must understand about forgiveness.
A. The SIGNIFICANCE Of Forgiveness
1. Because God offers FORGIVENESS TO US "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." Eph. 4:32 Who comes to your mind who has hurt you and needs forgiven?
2. Because resentment DOESN'T WORK "Resentment kills a fool . . ."Job 5:2 "Another man dies in bitterness of soul . . ." Job 21:25a Resentment only hurts the person holding it. Like Curly of the Three Stooges strapping a stick of dynamite on his chest and saying "The next time Mo hits me, he's going to blow his hand off!" It's not so much what you eat, as what's eating you that determines your health.
B. The STRUGGLES Of Forgiveness * Forgiveness is not . . .
1. RATIONALIZING the offense
2. RESTORATION of trust instantly
3. RESUMING THE RELATIONSHIP without change
C. The SECRET Of Forgiveness cf. John 13:3-5,8, * Realize you will never FORGIVE ANYONE more than Christ has FORGIVEN YOU
D. The STEPS Of Forgiveness
1. RECOGNIZE we're all IMPERFECT "There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins." Ecc. 7:20
2. RELINQUISH my right TO GET EVEN "Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath . . ." Rom. 12:19a
3. RESPOND to evil WITH GOOD "Do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who mistreat you." Lk. 6:27,28 "Love keeps no record of wrongs." 1 Cor. 13:5
4. REFOCUS on God's PLAN FOR MY LIFE "Devote your heart to him and stretch out your hands to him." Job 11:13 If you have someone to forgive . . . DO IT NOW!
1. Name one person or organization toward whom you feel most bitter 2. List the reasons why you should feel bitter. 3. List the reasons why God should be displeased with you on the basis of your actions. 4. Read what God has done for you in light of the things you listed (Rom. 5:1-8; Eph. 1:3-7)
1 Thessalonians 4:3-8 "Staying Pure in a Polluted World" -
PURSUE GOD'S STANDARD "How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your word." Psalm 119:9 Myth: The Bible is outdated and irrelevant. Fact: God knows best.
UPHOLD RIGHT THINKING "For as he thinks within himself, so he is." Proverbs 23:7 (NASB)
1. Monitor my media intake. "The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him." Matthew 12:35 TV - even prime time shows are filled with examples of implied sex outside of marriage. Internet - people who would never walk into a shop that sells pornograhy are now bombarded by e-mails trying to entice them to view pornography in the privacy of their home.
2. Manage my thought processes. "Finally, brothers, whatever is noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things. Philippians 4:8
3. Make no excuses. "No temptations has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it." 1 Corinthians 10:13 Myth: Lust will spice up my life. Fact: Lust will poison my life.
RUN FROM TEMPTATION "Flee from sexual immorality." 1 Corinthians 6:18a "Even if you think you can stand up to temptation, be careful not to fall." 1 Corinthians 10:12 "'Bad company corrupts good character'" 1 Corinthians15:33 ines. "But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or any kind of impurity." Ephesians 5:3 Myth: I can handle temptation. Fact: Flirting with temptation will take you down.
INSULATE YOUR MARRIAGE "Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral." Hebrews 13:4 "Enjoy life with your
wife, whom you love." Ecclesiastes 9:9 "The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband… Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time… Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control." 1 Corinthians 7:4,5 Myth: The grass is greener on the other side of the fence. Fact: Only grass that's not maintained turns brown.
TALLY THE COSTS "But a man who commits adultery lacks judgment; whoever does so destroys himself." Proverbs 6:32
1. Physical Cost - diseases - some are untreatable, some are deadly.
2. Spiritual Cost - your Bible reading, prayer time will diminish.
3. Emotional Cost - crushed self esteem, guilt, suspicion.
4. Final Cost - God standards have not changes.
"God will judge the sexually immoral" 1 Corinthians 10:13 Myth: It's not that big of a deal. Fact: The stakes are very high.
YIELD TO GOD "Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life." Romans 6:13
Psalm 15 - "Overcoming the Integrity Crisis" - Culture is in big trouble! Our society is experiencing a slide away from integrity. Even casual observers can see the integrity crisis in our nation in recent years - from Congress to the White House - even to churches. Today we examine three principles that will help us build lives of integrity in a world that lacks that quality. Note: Several statistics were given from a book called "The Day America Told the Truth".
A. The BASICS Of Integrity (whole like an integer is a whole number) "Lord, who may dwell in your sanctuary? Who may live on your holy hill?" (v.1)
1. In the SPIRIT of his life "He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous.." ( 2a)
2. In the SPEECH of his life "Who speaks the truth from his heart and has no slander on his tongue, who does his neighbor no wrong and casts no slur on his fellowman. . ." (vv. 2b-3)
3. In the STANDARDS of his life "Who despises a vile man but honors those who fear the Lord, who keeps his oath even when it hurts, who lends his money without usury and does not accept a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things will never be shaken." (v. 4-6)
B. The BEHAVIOR Of Integrity
1. PREPARE your heart before God "Fools mock at making amends for sin, but goodwill is found among the upright." Prov.14:9 *Three crucial questions: 1. When am I dishonest? _____marriage _____ work ______friends _____myself _____ lifestyle ______ God 2. How am I dishonest? ____ protecting others _____ slander _____ exaggeration ____ cheating _____ deceit _____ shading the truth ____ use of time _____ flattery _____ justifying 3. Why am I dishonest? ____ fear ______ insecurity ______ personal gain ____ greed ______ pride ______ outside pressure ____ anger ______ jealousy ______ convenience
2. PURSUE a relationship with God "You desire truth in the inner parts. . ." Ps. 51:6 "The upright will live before you." Ps. 140:13b
3. PRACTICE integrity before God "Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror, and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like." Js. 1:23,24
C. The BENEFITS Of Integrity
1. God's PROTECTION "He is a shield to those whose walk is blameless" Prov. 2:7b
2. God's DIRECTION "The righteousness of the blameless makes a straight way for them." Pr11:5
* What blocks integrity in our lives?? Rom 3:13 Write on a piece of paper what keeps us from a closer walk with the Lord, and then the opportunity to come up front and place those papers in a trash can signifying our giving that over to God.
Mark 3:25 - "How to Deal With Conflict" -
6th grade studes were to finish the sentence "I wish...". 20+ of the 36 students finished the sentence referring to their families. I wish... dad would come home. I wish... my parents wouldn't fight so much. I wish... I didn't have 3 mothers and 3 fathers because they are messing up my life. I wish... I had a father so kids wouldn't make fun of me. I wish... I had an M-1 so I could shot people who make fun of me. The family today is in a world of hurt. Conflict is producing instability in our homes as never before. Top 10 reasons God created Eve. Conflict can kill a relationship. Yet in any close relationship, conflict is inevitable. The real issue to face in every relationship is how to deal with conflict. Therefore, we turn our attention to three important guidelines to follow if we are to deal with conflict in our relationships in a God-honoring way. "If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand." - Mark 3:25
A. The REASON For Conflict "What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you?" James 4:1 * We experience conflict because of COMPETING desires! * The #1 motivation for marriage: To have MY NEEDS MET Three months ago they got a little puppy .. no matter how cute it is .. it creates conflict. Who is going to feed it, take it for a walk, take care of it, etc. Innocent/loveable children can also cause conflict because we have competing desires.
B. The RESPONSES To Conflict "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts." Psalm 139:23 * Note five responses to conflict: 1. MY way 2. NO way 3. YOUR way 4. HALF way 5. OUR way
C. The RESOLUTION Of Conflict
1. EXPERIENCE THE PEACE of God "We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." Rom. 5:1 "Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of his death, and our hostility toward each other was put to death." Eph. 2:16 (NLT) My relationship with Christ SETS THE TONE for how to handle conflicts.
2. EXPRESS YOUR THOUGHTS to God We need to learn to VENTILATE vertically!! "Stay away from dad/mom because he/she is ready to blow" we are good at ventilating horizontally. "If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him." James 1:5 Ruth Bell Graham: "It's foolish to expect from one another that which Jesus Christ can be." Two common myths: 1. "If I could JUST GET MARRIED, all my needs would be met." 2. "If I had JUST MARRIED THE RIGHT PERSON, all my needs would be met."
3. EMPATHIZE WITH THE NEEDS of your spouse "Don't be selfish . . . Don't think only about your own affairs, but be interested in others, too, and what they are doing." Phil. 2:3a,4 interested - scope out (like using a telescope to study the stars) "Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?" Matt. 7:3
4. ESTABLISH ground rules When countries go to war, they set ground rules. We could drop a nuclear bomb on Serbia and wipe out everyone, but there are rules even for warfare. The same is needed for arguments between spouses. In a Peanuts cartoon Lucy is quoted as saying "If I can't be right, I'm going to be wrong at the top of my lungs!" "Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice." Eph. 4:31 Proverb: "When you throw mud, you lose ground."
5. EXCHANGE CONFLICT for peace "Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First, go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift." Matt. 5:23,24 * Choose THE RIGHT TIME Wait for the adrenalin to go down, but do it soon. * Choose THE RIGHT PLACE
6. EXAMINE godly advice "Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice." - Prov. 13:10 * Agreement: I resolve to . . . 1. Commit MY LIFE to Jesus Christ. 2. Commit MY ATTITUDES to Jesus Christ. 3. Commit MY WORDS to Jesus Christ.
"Overcoming Materialism" - Proverbs 27:20;
We live in the greatest age of materialism that our world has ever seen. News reports constantly remind us that the average American isn't concerned about what our governmental leaders do as long as the economy is healthy. That attitude has been fostered by advertisers who constantly remind us that we need more of what we already have. Today we examine two principles that will help us conquer the spiritual disease of materialism.
A. The MYTHS That Lead To Materialism
1. Having MORE THINGS will make me MORE HAPPY"Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. . . As goods increase, so do those who consume them. And what benefit are they to the owner except to feast his eyes on them?" Ecc. 5:10,11
2. Having MORE THINGS will make me MORE IMPORTANT
3. Having MORE THINGS will make me MORE SECURE "The wealth of the rich is their fortified city; they imagine it an unscalable wall." Prov. 18:11 "Do not wear yourself out to get rich; have the wisdom to show restraint." Prov. 23:4 Job 31:24,28
B. The METHOD That Overcomes Materialism
1. RESIST comparing "People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction." 1 Tim. 6:9 But . . . some of the wealthiest men in the Scriptures were the godliest!!
2. REJOICE in what you DO HAVE "Better what the eye sees than the roving of the appetite." Ecc. 6:9 Question: Is the DESIRE TO ACQUIRE out of control in my life? "Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, becaue God has said, 'Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.'" Heb. 13:5
3. RETURN AT LEAST 10% to the Lord The purpose of giving is to teach me to put God first! "Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment." 1 Tim. 6:17
4. REFOCUS on permanent VALUES "Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things." Col. 3:2 Matt. 6:24 What will determine my lifestyle??
Ephesians 4:26,27,31 - "How to Handle Anger Before it Handles You"
Someone said, "He who loses his head is usually the last to miss it!" That's true! When we lose our temper, we lose our ability to think rationally and make decisions. Anger can be devastating . . . not only to those who receive it, but also to the one who becomes angry. In fact, one psychologist suggested that anger is "involved in 80-90% of all counseling." Lloyd John Ogilvie wrote, "Tell me what ticks you off, and I will tell you what makes you tick. Today we turn our attention to four lessons need to learn that will help us conquer the problem of anger in our lives.
A. CONFESS It - (Admit that it is there!) "Each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor . . . Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry." Eph. 4:25a,27a There's a CONSTRUCTIVE way and a DESTRUCTIVE way to deal with anger. The Old Testament talk of God's anger or wrath 375 times. The New Testament records that Jesus got angry. They remain sinless because of how They express it. The #1 cause of DEPRESSION is anger! Doctors estimate that 80-90% of conseling is due to unresolved anger. Many medical problems are caused by repressed anger - headaches, nausea, ulcers, etc.
B. COMPREHEND It Two groups of people . . . 1. SKUNKS - (stink up the whole place when angry) 2. TURTLES - (crawl in their shell and withdraw when angry) People respond in one of three ways - against others in anger - away from others in fear - work with others in love "A patient man has great understanding, but a quick-tempered man displays folly." Prov. 14:29 "A man's wisdom gives him patience . . ." Prov. 19:11a
2. Three phases of an argument: 1. RECOGNITION - (feel things are getting warm) 2. REACTION - (things get loud) 3. RESOLUTION - (hang in until root problem is identified)
3. Five causes for anger: 1. When we feel UNACCEPTED.
2. When we feel UNAPPRECIATED. 3. When we feel UNSUPPORTED. 4. When we feel UNPROTECTED. 5. When we feel UNCERTAIN.
C. COPE With It Immediately "Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold." Eph. 4:26b-27 This does not say do not let the sun go down while there is still a problem because some problems can not be solved in one evening. What it does mean is to deal with your feelings of anger before going to sleep. Note the difference between ANGER and DANGER Anger is a LEARNED RESPONSE
You learn how to express anger from your family. You CAN change with God's help.
D. CONTROL It "A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control." Prov. 29:11
1. REALIZE the cost Story of a man who "killed" his car when it got stuck in a snowbank. He smashed the windows with a tire iron - shot out the tires and shot the engine. A very expensive price for uncontrolled anger. "A hot-tempered man stirs up dissension, but a hot-tempered one commits many sins."Prov. 29:22
2. REFLECT before reacting " . . . Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry." James 1:19 "The best way to cut your own throat is with a sharp tongue."
3. RELEASE anger appropriately "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs." Eph. 4:29 This verse will help us control our dialog when we are angry. * Seven rules for a "fair fight:" 1. Never COMPARE - (with others) 2. Never CONDEMN - (don't us words like ALWAYS, NEVER) 3. Never COMMAND - (don't _________ ) 4. Never CHALLENGE - (don't _________ ) 5. Never CONDESCEND - (don't play amature psychologist) 6. Never CONTRADICT - (don't interupt the other person) 7. Never CONFUSE - (don't change the subject)
4. RELY ON Christ's Help
How does Christ help me deal with anger?? He deals with ROOT CAUSES! We are all a little like a tube of toothpaste - when we are squeezed, whatever is inside comes out.
- Hebrews 13:4 - "How to Avoid a Moral Disaster"
We live in a world that rationalizes anti-marriage activity. Many factories and offices are filled with people looking for a relationship - regardless of its morality. How do we counteract that kind of environment? Today we examine four Biblical principles that will help affair-proof your marriage. "Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral." - Hebrews 13:4
A. The CAUSES Of An Immoral Relationship "The mouth of an adulteress is a deep pit . . ." Prov. 22:14a "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation." Matt. 26:41a "Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." - 1 Peter 5:8
1. UNMET NEEDS ... for men it is usually sexual for women it is emotional
2. UNFULFILLED EXPECTATIONS ... when you start comparing your spouse to someone else, you are on a slippery slope
3. UNDEVELOPED SELF-ESTEEM ... emotionally immature - used to get attention for athletic ability or attractiveness
4. UNRESOLVED CONFLICT ... Satan will bring someone "who understands" into your life
5. UNCONTROLLED THOUGHTS ... we are bombarded by our culture with immoral information
6. UNPROTECTED LIFESTYLE ... when you have improper relationships with members of the opposite sex, when you are tired your defences are down or-when you have had a recent success "The heart is deceitful above all things . . ." Jer. 17:9
7. UNRELIABLE COMMITMENT ... you made a contract with God at your marriage - a non-negotiable contract
B. THE CHARACTERISTICS Of An Immoral Relationship "Each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin when it is full-grown gives birth to death." James 1:14,15
1. REVIEW SINFUL THOUGHTS in your mind "As a man thinks in his heart, so is he." ... this is where the battle starts
2. RISK EMOTIONAL involvement ... adultery begins long before the bedroom ... a woman starts fishing for compliments or ... a man starts providing excess gifts or attention
3. RESPOND BY PHYSICAL involvement
4. RATIONALIZE the affair ... if only my spouse would meet my needs ... God will forgive us ... it won't happen again
C. The CORRECTION For An Immoral Relationship
1. ACKNOWLEDGE THE SIN "For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight." Psalm 51:3,4
2. AGREE TO END the relationship IMMEDIATELY "Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts . . ." Heb. 3:15
3. AVOID ALL CONTACT with that person from now on "No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it." 1 Cor. 10:13
D. The CURES For An Immoral Relationship
1. MAKE A COMMITMENT to God's standard of morality "How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your word." Ps. 119: Solomon 8:6 ... most people think they can play with fire without getting burned.
2. Maintain your MARRIAGE "Drink water from your own cistern . . . May you rejoice in the wife of your youth. A loving doe, a graceful deer may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be captivated by her love." Prov. 5:15a, 18,19 * Your marriage is WHAT YOU MAKE IT!!
3. MANAGE YOUR MIND ... if we were to put all the thoughts you have had this week on the screen, would you be uncomfortable? ... change the radio or TV station, put down the book or magazine, avoid the web sites ... it's a good movie "except for a few scenes" - your mind records these as well ... sex is used to sell everything from bananas to batteries in our society ... "Oh be careful little eyes what you see - Oh be careful little ears what you hear - Oh be careful little hands what you do." "Do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature." Rom. 13:14b Don't RESIST IT rather REPLACE IT
4. Monitor your MEDIA INTAKE "I will set no wicked thing before my eyes." Ps. 101:3 "I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil." Rom. 16:19
5. MINIMIZE THE OPPORTUNITY to be tempted "So if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall." 1 Cor. 10:12
6. Maintain the proper relationships with THE OPPOSITE SEX "But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality . . ." Eph. 5:3 ... don't participate in workplace flirting ... don't listen to complaints about another's spouse ... be conscious about how you dress
7. Magnify the CONSEQUENCES "But a man who commits adultery lacks judgment; whoever does so destroys himself." Prov. 6:32 .. the less you follow God's rules, the more trouble you will run into to "Through the fear of the Lord a man avoids evil." Prov. 16:6 Three groups of people:
1. Those who FALLEN ... there is hope, God gives us a second chance, take steps right now, start over today by declaring that the relationship is over and avoiding all future contact 2. Those who are SINGLE ... by God's grace determine that you are going to save your purity for the person you may marry ... sex outside of marriage ALWAYS causes heartaches 3. Those who FAITHFUL ... make your marriage affair proof - make the grass on your side of the fence look so green that the grass on the other side of the fence looks brown. For some marriages the grass on the other side looks greener because the grass on their side looks like asphalt.
"What's That in Your Eye?" - Luke 10:25-37
Martin Luther King - born in 1929 during the depression. In 1963 he gave the "I have a Dream" speech that still echos today describing a world where there is no prejudice. There is one thing to say that all Americans are promised Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness - but it is quite another thing to stepping across society's boundaries and impact people with the love of God. When Jesus came to earth He experienced the impact of prejudice. He was born in Galilee, poor, with little formal education and knew the religious leaders were thinking "Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?" - John 1:46
We would like to think it doesn't exist anymore. We assume that our society is too educated, too sophisticated to show signs of blatant prejudice. But it's not true. Prejudice still exists all around us . . . because it grows out of who we are. Today we examine three insights that will help us overcome one of the world's oldest sources of conflict.
1A. The PLAGUE Of Prejudice * Luke 10:25-37 Jesus wanted to show how deep the root of prejudice runs in each of our lives.
1B. RACIAL 30 to 100 million Africans were captured and sold into slavery just in America alone. During World War II - the Nazis killed 6 million Jews for "ethnic cleansing". Thurgood Marshall "Racism is has always been obsolete - it serves no purpose in civilized society - but the problem is convincing people that it is obsolete." Ron Sider: "Racism in the church is a denial of the Gospel. It is a heretical, disobedient rejection of God's purpose in Christ . . . . Racial reconciliation in the church is a visible demonstration of the Gospel."
2B. RELIGIOUS "Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem." John 4:20 Priest might claim he thought the man was dead - the law of Moses prohibited him from touching a dead body. Unity in the body of Christ is growing - Promise Keepers has helped promote this.
3B. SEXUAL "They were astonished to find him talking to a woman." John 4:27 Everyone is equally significant to God. Where the Gospel is preached, the value of women is increased.
4B. SOCIAL "If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is - that she is a sinner." Luke 7:39 "Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in.  If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, "Here's a good seat for you," but say to the poor man, "You stand there" or "Sit on the floor by my feet,"  have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?" - James 2:2-4
2A. The POWER Over Prejudice "But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.  For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility,  by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace,  and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.  He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near.  For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit." - Ephesians 2: 13-18
1B. He BROKE down the walls! "He has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility . . ." (v. 14)
2B. He BRINGS us together! "His purpose was to create one new man the Father by one Spirit." (vv. 15,18) What do you think of when the term "communist" is used? Today we have with us a man who grew up as a member of the communist party in China. He came to America to further his studies and though the outreach of this church, he has accepted Jesus Christ as his saviour and become a brother in Christ. That's the power of the gospel - the ability to cross racial, religious, sexual or social barriers and draw people together.
3A. The PREVENTION Of Prejudice * We must TOUCH those in pain! Story of a young toddler who locked himself in his room in the dark. He was separated by his mother who encouraged him to jiggle the door knob. When this failed, panic set in. His mother did the only thing she could do, she reached under the door and touched his hand. At the touch, his crying stopped and after some time he jiggled the door knob again and the locked popped out and the door was opened. "Who touched my clothes?" - Mark 5:30b
CONCLUSION * Why not ask God to uncover the HIDDEN prejudices in your heart
- "The Nightmare of Pornography" - Matthew 5:27,28;
We live in a "throw away world." In just a couple of minutes you can "have it your way" at a fast food restaurant and toss away the wrappers for the food. Microwave technology has cut the time of food preparation to a fraction. Pornography is another example of the quick fix mentality. For just a few dollars our lust can feed on sexual images. But the lingering impact destroys countless relationships and lives. Today we examine this rampant problem in our society and how to deal with it in our homes.
1A. A DESCRIPTION of Pornography -A-PORN
2A. The DANGERS of Pornography es of CHILDREN
3A. The DEFEAT of Pornography * Recognize the following: "The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame." Gen. 2:25 e.g.. Song of Solomon UTSIDE OF marriage. "Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral." Heb. 13:4 "But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea." Matt. 18:6 "Since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband." 1 Cor. 7:2
CONCLUSION - Words of encouragement: 1. To non-users . . .DON'T START! - Phil. 4:8 2. To light users . . .BEWARE! "So if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall." 1 Cor. 10:12 3. To addicts . . .BREAK THE SILENCE!
DO POINTS 1. Determine that you will express your objection to pornographic materials in places of business which you visit. 2. Begin a Scripture memory program for the renewing of your mind in this area. 3. Join an accountability group and be honest about your struggles with others.
PRIMARY RESOURCES Christians in a Sex-Crazed Culture by Bill Hybels Moral Catastrophe by David Hocking Men's Secret Wars by Patrick Means
SECONDARY RESOURCES The Christian in an Age of Sexual Eclipse by Michael Braun and George Alan Rekers Christians in the Wake of the Sexual Revolution by Bruce Alcorn Generation at Risk by Fran Sciacca
The World’s Favorite Scripture” Matthew 7:1-6 1.
We Should Not Enjoy Hurtful Judgement
Matthew 7:1 - Matthew 7:3 - 2. We Should Not Engage In Hypocritical Judgement
Matthew 7:3-5 - Matthew 7:5 - 3. We Should Not Exercise Holy Judgement
Matthew 7:6 - Matthew 7:5 - 1 Corinthians 2:15 - Leviticus 19:17 - John 7:24 –
“Don’t Sweat The Big Stuff” Matthew 6:25-34
Matthew 6:19 –
Matthew 6:25 –
Matthew 6:28 –
Matthew 6:34 –
1. Admit The Sinfulness Of Worry
Matthew 6:25, 31, & 34 –
2. Acknowledge The Senselessness Of Worry
Matthew 6:25 –
Romans 8:32 –
Matthew 6:27 –
Matthew 6:28-30 –
3. Apply Steadfastness To Worry
Look One Way At A Time – Matthew 6:31-33 –
Live One Day At A Time – Matthew 6:34 –