Sunday, June 7, 2020

The Valley Of Confusion

Temple Baptist Church - 6-7-2020
Job 23:1-17


A.  Job is said to be the oldest book in the Bible. 

1.  I will take their word for that as I do know the antiquity of the story.  Thus, what I am going to preach about this morning is as old as time itself.

2.  The Valley of Faith.  There will be times in our lives when we do not understand (Job did not) and or when we cannot do anything to alleviate our circumstances.  These times will try our faith!

B.  It is in these times that you had better know some things.

James 5:11  Behold, we count them happy which (1) endure. Ye have heard of the (2) patience of Job, and have seen (3) the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.

1.  Job’s Predicament.  Life will be tough at times!

Job 23:1-9  Then Job answered and said,  (2)  Even to day is my complaint bitter: my stroke is heavier than my groaning.  (3)  Oh that I knew where I might find him! that I might come even to his seat!  (4)  I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments.  (5)  I would know the words which he would answer me, and understand what he would say unto me.  (6)  Will he plead against me with his great power? No; but he would put strength in me.  (7)  There the righteous might dispute with him; so should I be delivered for ever from my judge.  (8)  Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him:  (9)  On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him:

1a)  Job’s Complaint – Verse 2  Job’s Complaint was legitimate!

2a)  Job’s Confusion – Verses 3-7  Murphy’s Law applied to Job.

3a)  Job’s Consternation – Verses 8-9  God was nowhere to be found.

2.  Job’s Patience. 

Job 23:10-12  But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.  (11)  My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined.  (12)  Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.

4a)  Job’s Consideration – Verses 10  God was still in control!

5a)  Job’s Continuation – Verses 11 And having done all to stand! Do Right!

6a)  Job’s Comfort – Verse 12  God’s comforting Word, the Bible.

3.  Job’s Perception. 

Job 23:13-15  But he is in one mind, and who can turn him? and what his soul desireth, even that he doeth.  (14)  For he performeth the thing that is appointed for me: and many such things are with him.  (15)  Therefore am I troubled at his presence: when I consider, I am afraid of him.

7a)  Job’s Conclusion – Verse 12-17  Trust in the wisdom of God!

C.  In this part of Job’s life, we find:

          1.  God’s Purpose – vs. 10  “I shall come forth as gold”

          2.  God’s Plan – vs. 11 – “his steps”

          3.  God’s Persistence – vs. 13 – “who can turn him?”

          4.  God’s Performance – vs.  14 – “he performeth”

          5.  God’s Presence – vs. 15 – “his presence”

Our Faith in our Confusion – vs. 11

1 Peter 2:21  For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

1.  His Steps Are Sure Steps

Psalms 18:36  Thou hast enlarged my steps under me, that my feet did not slip.

Psalms 18:33  He maketh my feet like hinds' feet, and setteth me upon my high places.

Psalms 37:31  The law of his God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide.

2.  His Steps Are Ordered Steps

Psalms 37:23  The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.

3.  His Steps Are Protected Steps

Psalms 57:6  They have prepared a net for my steps; my soul is bowed down: they have digged a pit before me, into the midst whereof they are fallen themselves.

Psalms 139:3  Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.

4.  His Steps Are Righteous Steps

Psalms 85:13  Righteousness shall go before him; and shall set us in the way of his steps.

Psalms 119:133  Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.

Psalms 23:3  He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

5.  His Steps Are Joyous Steps

Psalms 16:11  Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.

6.  His Steps Are Good Steps

Psalms 25:10  All the paths of the LORD are mercy and truth unto such as keep his covenant and his testimonies.

Psalms 65:11  Thou crownest the year with thy goodness; and thy paths drop fatness.

Psalms 3:17  Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.

7.  His Steps Are Plain Steps

Psalms 27:11  Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.

Psalms 119:105  Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

Proverbs 3:6  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

8.  His Steps Are Growing Steps

Proverbs 4:18  But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.

9.  His Steps Are Living Steps

Proverbs 12:28  In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death.

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

They Without Us

Temple Baptist Church - 6-3-2020
Hebrews 11:39-12:1


A.  As we finish God’s “Hall of Faith” in chapter 11, I want to tie that chapter into chapter 12.  The last verse of chapter 11 speaks of the generations that would follow.  This includes us!

B.  Chapter 11 is our Example.  Chapter 12 is our Exhortation.

1.  Our forefathers who obtained victory in this life through faith.

2.  Our forefathers who did not obtain victory in this life but continued in faith.

C.  Chapter 12 begins with our “great cloud of witnesses.”

1.  This does not mean that these afore mentioned individuals are looking over the bannisters of heaven and watching how we do.

2.  It means that their sterling examples of faith witness to us that, if they could endure in faith, so can we.

D.  What I want to look at the phrase “that they without us should not be made perfect.”

E.  What good was their example if those who follow them do not continue in faith?

1.  If you and I will not continue in faith, then who will?

2.  If our posterity sees nothing in us, to who shall they look?

F.  Three things I want to look at in chapter 12, verse 1.

1.  Remembrance “Witnesses”. Let Us Observe.  

a.  “we also” – Inclusive.  As we sit here tonight, God’s people are still suffering around us.  This is a universal problem with both the normal trials of life and the persecution of our faith.

b.  “compassed about” – Universal.  To be encircled.  We are in good company!  Though often we feel alone in our spiritual battles, everyone that is saved has struggles.

c.  “with so great a cloud” – Visible.  This root word for cloud is found only once in the Bible.  It does not mean to look at the sky and see a cloud or many clouds.  It is the “cloud” of an overcast day where all that we see is cloud.  The masses of people who have and are struggling is innumerable!  Someone once said that men “live lives of quiet desperation.”  We are not desperate, but we are all suffering to some degree daily with self, sin, or sorrows of this life.

d.  “Witnesses” – Accountable.  Someone who has seen or experienced something.  If these can endure, we can endure!  We have the same grace, strength, and guidance that they had or are having.  We are better equipped than most because we have “that which is perfect,” the completed Bible.

2.  Removal. “every weight, and the sin”  Let Us Lay Aside. 

a.  The Removal of Weights.  Weights are not necessarily sinful but things that hinder us in our service to the Lord.  There are so many things clamoring for out attention; so many “voices” that we hear; so many things that we enjoy that become distractions in our lives.  I John ends with the admonition of having idols, both mental and metal, that take precedent over spiritual things.

Philippians 1:10  That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ;

b.  The Removal of “The Sin” – each of us struggle with our flesh, our thought life, etc.  Paul said, “In me (that is in my flesh) dwelleth no good thing  … when I would do good, evil is present with me.”

Romans 13:12-14  The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.  (13)  Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.  (14)  But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.

c.  Realization.  “which doeth so easily beset us”  Let Us Be Vigilant.  Everyone has certain weaknesses of the flesh: some visible and some not visible.  We tend to look down on or preach against that which can be readily seen but the most dangerous and wicked sins are often hidden to the public eye.

2 Corinthians 10:4-5  (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)  (5)  Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

3.  Resolve.  “with patience the race that is set before us”  Let Us Run. 

a.  It is a Personal Race.  Everyone of us has a specific work to do; a place to be.  I did not know 44 years ago, when I was saved, that I would spend most of my life in another state and town.  I am glad that I am here tonight.

b.  It is a Perilous Race.  Every individual race has its ups and downs, mountains, and valleys.  There are both physical and spiritual dangers to be dealt with.  When you know that life is hard, you can make it!

c.  It is a Patient Race.  As tribulation worketh patience, hard times and places cause us to never give up the battle.  By God’s grace, I intend to finish that which I was apprehended for.

d.  It is a Persuasive Race.  We become a part of the “cloud of witnesses.”  People, family—friends—acquaintances—strangers, watch us now and remember us later.  Our “dying in faith” will either help them or one day haunt them.