Temple Baptist Church - 4-16-2017
2 Thessalonians 3:4-5
A. In these last days, everything is spiritually “upside down.”
1. Right has become wrong; wrong has become right; holiness has become old fashioned; sinfulness has become acceptable; God has been set on “the back burner;” and the world has plummeted into the depths of immorality and corruption.
2. These are the days which the Bible spoke of thousands of years ago and wrote the headlines of the news media. The days of Noah, the days of Lot, the days of Laodicea, and the days of apostasy! It has had an adverse effect upon the local church and God’s people because our spiritual eyesight has become blurred.
3. Though we have the Word of God and the Holy Spirit living inside, we often fail to see as God sees!
B. 2,000 years ago, Paul admonished the church at Thessalonica to allow the Lord to “direct” their hearts.
1. He did not say to allow the Lord to direct their minds! Out of the heart (or soul of man) comes the issues of life. I have often heard the this: “Stealing does not make you a thief. You steal because you ARE a thief!”
2. In the Old Testament, the Lord said, “My son, give me thine heart, and let thine eyes observe my ways.” (Proverbs 23:26) God tied the condition of the heart (give me thine heart) to spiritual eyesight (let thine eyes observe my ways.” We are not our own. We belong to God.
C. Our text says that we need to allow God to direct our hearts! When our desire is right, God can direct our hearts. Direct means “to straighten fully.” Often, because of circumstances and the weakness of our flesh, our spiritual sight becomes blurred.
1. God is infinite in His wisdom – He who knows the end from the beginning guides and guards our steps! Safety is of the Lord.
2. God’s grace is all sufficient – He who knows the end from the beginning gives provision for our steps.
3. God’s divine leadership is unerring – He who knows the end from the beginning guides our steps.
D. Three things are mentioned in these verses that we need to allow God to direct in our lives.
1. We need to allow God to direct our hearts unto obedience to Biblical Authority.
a. The authority of the Bible. 1 Peter 1:2 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.
2 Thessalonians 3:14-15 And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. (15) Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.
b. The authority of the Pastor. Hebrews 13:17 Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.
2. We need to allow God to direct our hearts unto the Love of God.
a. The Love that we have for God. Ephesians 6:24 Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen.
b. The Love that we have for God’s Children. 1 John 5:1-3 Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. (2) By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. (3) For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
c. The Love that we have for Sinners. Luke 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.
3. We need to allow God to direct our hearts unto Patience in Waiting for God.
a. Patience in Tribulation. Romans 5:1-5 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: (2) By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. (3) And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; (4) And patience, experience; and experience, hope: (5) And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
b. Patience in Faith. Luke 8:15 But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience. (Fruit does not magically appear, it must be nurtured and waited for.)
c. Patience in Faithfulness. 2 Thessalonians 3:5 And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ.