Thursday, July 31, 2008

False Teachers - Introduction

Temple Baptist Church - 7-30-2008

2 Corinthians 11:1-15

Introduction: We will spend several weeks on this particular passage of Scripture because of its prophecy concerning the last days in which we live. I will more than likely preach only the introduction this first night. I had rather quit soon than to get into something that will take longer than we have and have to quit.

A. In Verses 2-4, we see the Apostle’s heart and goal:

1. The Jealousy of the Bride (vs. 2) - Do not “mess with” the church! It is a godly jealousy, not a fleshly one. Every man of God is protective of the local church. The hireling flees when the wolf comes.

2. The Espousal of the Bride (vs. 2) - The church belongs to Christ and the espousal is as binding as the marriage.

3. The Chastity of the Bride (vs. 2) – The beauty of a bride is her purity! That is why she is always dressed in white and veiled.

4. The Concern of the Servant (vs. 3) – “I fear” The church is at the heart of the pastor.

5. The Craftiness of the Serpent (vs. 3) – “beguiled…subtilty” Satan is devious and deceptive.

6. The Coming of the Apostasy (vs. 4)

7. The Caution of the Apostle (vs. 4)

B. We live in the days of 2 Thessalonians 2 which describes the spiritual deception of our day. We are in the midst of the “falling away” prophesied in this chapter. Good, fundamental churches are no longer “politically correct” in our society where sin is not only tolerated but also promoted. To preach against sin is the “unpardonable sin” of the day.

C. Dr. Harold Sightler once said this about the deception: “It is a Planned attack and it is a Manned attack.” From the serpent in the Garden of Eden to the wicked, money hungry charlatan who counterfeits God’s healings on the television set—to the false brethren who continue to “creep” into universities and churches—destroying both their faith and fellowship, the apostasy continues to deceive.

D. Satan is the great counterfeiter! He is good at what he does to the point that the Bible says:

Matthew 24:24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if [it were] possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

1. Satan counterfeits churches. God has never ordained liberalism at any level! Liberal churches are counterfeits! Ignorant people say, “It does not matter where you go to church as long as you go.” It does matter!

Revelation 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and [I know] the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but [are] the synagogue of Satan.

2. Satan counterfeits saints. Matthew 13 deals with the different soils and characterizes the different results. This same chapter also prophesies the “planting” of the tares among the wheat.

Matthew 13:27-28 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? 28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?

3. Satan counterfeits preachers.

a) There are “sincere” false preachers - Matthew 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? (These are ignorant false preachers who may have the best of intentions but are false none the less. My mind goes back to Saul of Tarsus before his conversion: he was sincere in his efforts to serve God though in error and causing much harm.)

b) There are “satanic” false preachers - Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

2 Corinthians 11:13-15 For such [are] false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works. (These men know that they are not saved! These men make merchandise of spiritual things! These men laugh at and mock those ignorant “disciples” who follow them! These men will receive the “greater damnation!”)

c) Satan uses both of these types of “false preachers” to introduce false doctrine into the local church. God’s people need to learn to:

1) Identify them - Matthew 7:20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. (Look at their disciples! Worldly and ungodly!)
2) Mark and avoid them - Romans 16:17-18 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. 18 For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. (Look at their doctrine! Contrary to clear scripture! God will never operate contrary to His Word!)

E. Understanding and recognition of false teachers or preachers is not difficult task for the diligent Bible student who knows Christ Jesus and has the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, living within.

John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, [that] shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

1 John 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.

Isaiah 8:20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, [it is] because [there is] no light in them.

F. God’s Word brings about stability and doctrinal pureness in the believer. There is one absolute authority and that is the Bible! If you want to know the truth or how to identify false teachers, simply go to God’s Word.

Ephesians 4:11-14 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 14 That we [henceforth] be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, [and] cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

John 8:31-32 Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, [then] are ye my disciples (students and learners) indeed; 32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

How Do I Love Thee

Temple Baptist Church - 7-27-2008

Song Of Solomon 1:1-4


A. When I read these verses, I am once again reminded of the poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browning titled “How Do I Love Thee?”

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. I love thee to the depth and breadth and height My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight For the ends of Being and ideal Grace. I love thee to the level of every day's Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight. I love thee freely, as men strive for Right; I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise. I love with a passion put to use In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith. I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints, --- I love thee with the breath,Smiles, tears, of all my life! --- and, if God choose,I shall but love thee better after death.

B. These verses penned so long ago should express the love of the saints for their blessed and most wonderful Saviour! How can we not love Him who is altogether lovely and loving?

1. Never so dear a dowry was paid as was paid by Christ for His Bride! John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. (Written upon the palms of His hands!)

a) He gave up glory for a manger.

b) He was despised and rejected of His own.

c) He suffered as a man of sorrow and acquainted with grief.

d) He bore the shame and reproach that belonged to us.

e) He gave Himself to the will of the Father in the cross as He sweat as it were great drops of blood.

f) He was nailed to the cross after His visage was marred more than that of any man through the beatings and scourging.

g) He bore our sins in His own body on the tree and willingly died for you and I!

h) What a price He paid for His Bride!

2. He loved us before we ever knew Him! John 17:20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; (We are ever dear to His heart.)

Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Ephesians 1:6-7 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. 7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Ephesians 2:7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in [his] kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

1 John 4:10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son [to be] the propitiation for our sins.

3. We, as His children, are precious in His sight! Psalms 116:15 Precious in the sight of the LORD [is] the death of his saints. (Written upon His hands and loved with an everlasting love! Death severs the earthly marriage of a couple but only serves to unite forever Jesus Christ and His Bride!)

Isaiah 49:15-16 Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee. 16 Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of [my] hands; thy walls [are] continually before me.

Psalms 78:36-39 Nevertheless they did flatter him with their mouth, and they lied unto him with their tongues. 37 For their heart was not right with him, neither were they stedfast in his covenant. 38 But he, being full of compassion, forgave their iniquity, and destroyed them not: yea, many a time turned he his anger away, and did not stir up all his wrath. 39 For he remembered that they were but flesh; a wind that passeth away, and cometh not again.

C. How can we not love Him? Completely, honestly, boldly, and faithfully! In Mark 12:30, our Lord said, “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this [is] the first commandment.” (Verse 3 says, “Therefore do the virgins love thee.”)

1. We Love Him For His Great Salvation - Hebrews 2:3 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard [him];

1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.

2. We Love Him For His Marvelous Grace - Titus 2:11 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,

2 Corinthians 9:8 And God [is] able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all [things], may abound to every good work:

3. We Love Him For His Glorious Peace - Genesis 15:15 And thou shalt go to thy fathers in peace; thou shalt be buried in a good old age.

2 Peter 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,

4. We Love Him For His Blessed Assurance - Isaiah 32:17 And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever.

1 John 3:24 And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.

5. We Love Him For His Infinite Wisdom - Ephesians 1:7-8 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace; 8 Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence; (God knew our “frame” and provided our wonderful salvation and eternal security for us.)
Romans 11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable [are] his judgments, and his ways past finding out!

6. We I Love Him For His Unspeakable Joy - 1 Peter 1:8 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:

Habakkuk 3:17-18 Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither [shall] fruit [be] in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and [there shall be] no herd in the stalls: 18 Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.

7. We Love Him For His Promised Eternity - Romans 8:17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together.

1 Thessalonians 4:17 Then we which are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

Conclusion: His wonderful love demands a wonderful love returned!

He Is Coming Again, Just As He Said!

Temple Baptist Church - 7-20-2008

John 14:1-4


A. One of the greatest promises in the Bible is found in John 14 when Jesus said, “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” We live in the last of the last days and His return in eminent! There will be a Returning, a Receiving, and a Recompensing!

1. These are Days Of Expectancy because of:

a) The Wickedness Of Sinners – Both Noah and Lot’s Days combined.

b) The Wickedness Of So-called Saints – 2 Timothy 3 fulfilled!

2. These are Days Of Excitement because of:

a) We See The Signs Of The Apostasy – 2 Thessalonians 2

b) We See The Signs Of The Approaching One World Government and Religion.

3. These are Days Of Encouragement because of:

a) The Predictions Of God’s Word

b) The Promises Of God’s Word

B. This promise of His return (I will come again, and receive you unto myself: that where I am, there ye may be also) will be manifested in the last days and this is the time in which we live. All of the Bible prophecy concerning the Rapture of the Church has been fulfilled and the time is certainly ripe.

1. The Saints are ready for deliverance! I am not talking about “professing Christians.” I am talking about “possessing Christians!”They are sick and tired of this “present evil world” and are both excited and expectant concerning their eternal one. This world is not my home. I live here until He takes me to my “long home.”

2. The World is ready for deliverance! Their “deliverer” will not be what they expected because he will destroy this world, but he will be the one that they will place their trust in. Even now, the troublesome times are being foreshadowed by financial hardship, starvation, political upheaval, and unrest. There is no rest for the wicked in this world or the world to come! They will one day call upon the mountains and rocks to fall upon them with no comprehension that their death will go from the temporal to the eternal!


1. We Find The Promise Of A Peace – “let not your heart be troubled” Notice with me that the word “heart” is singular. This is not a promise to the church corporately, but to the saint individually.

Psalms 29:11 The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace.

Isaiah 26:3-4 Thou wilt keep [him] in perfect peace, [whose] mind [is] stayed [on thee]: because he trusteth in thee. 4 Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH [is] everlasting strength:

Isaiah 32:17 And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever.

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

John 20:21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace [be] unto you: as [my] Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

a. A Peace That Comes From Knowing The Lord
b. A Peace That Comes From Trusting The Lord
c. A Peace That Comes From Expecting The Lord

2. We Find The Promise Of A Place – “In my Father’s house are many mansions”

1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

Isaiah 64:4 For since the beginning of the world [men] have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, [what] he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him.

Revelation 22:1-5 And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. 2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. 3 And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: 4 And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads. 5 And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever.

a. Heaven Is A Prepared Place!
b. Heaven Is A Perfect Place!
c. Heaven Is A Permanent Place!

3. We Find The Promise Of A Preparation – “I go and prepare a place for you” He placed the eternal blood on the eternal mercy seat for our eternal redemption!

a. Salvation Has A Wonderful Saviour – vs. 13 (What a wonderful Saviour He is to me!)

b. Salvation Provides A Wonderful Grace – vs. 11 (Grace: probably the most misunderstood of all doctrines! I wonder what it is about grace that confuses people. Grace is simply unmerited favor! It cannot be bought or wrought. What a wonderful thought! He loves me as I am! He loves even me!)

c. Salvation Effects A Wonderful Conversion – vs. 14 (What a wonderful change in my life has been wrought!)

d. Salvation Produces A Wonderful People – vs. 14 (The most wonderful people in all of the world!)

e. Salvation Guarantees A Wonderful Prospect – vs. 13 (I will live forever in Heaven with Him!)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Pastoral Authority

Temple Baptist Church - 7-23-2008

2 Corinthians 10:1-18


A. One of the most misunderstood aspect of the local church in our day is that of pastoral authority. This problem has evolved for several reasons:

1. The operation of the local church has changed. Churches have become social clubs and the mission of the church has changed. Instead of soul winning, saint feeding churches—they have evolved into entertainment centers for the unsaved or carnal members.

2. The chain of command of the local church has changed. Most churches are prototypes of other denominational churches that are operated by deacon and trustee boards. Many of these churches are characterized by “mob” rule.

3. The pastors of the local church keep changing on a regular basis. Some are voted out by the “once a year” evaluation of the pastor’s ministry while many have pastors who change churches more often than they change automobiles. God gets the blame for most of these moves when, in reality, it is because of either better salary and benefits or the pastor has used up most of his sermons. Pulpit Committees contacting pastors of another churches in order to fill their pulpits is a travesty. These pastors belong to other churches and, the last I heard, they were to be God called. When a pastor believes it the will of God to leave a church, I believe it to be the will of God for him to be honest with his present church and resign prior to seeking another.

4. The respect for the pastor of the local church has degenerated. The office of the pastor has been brought down to a “supervisor” status and we all know that everyone complains about the “boss!” Pastors are now spoken to on a first name basis instead of “Preacher,” “Pastor,” or simple “Brother So-in-so.” I was taught in the army to “salute the uniform,” and not the man.

5. The office of the pastor has been corrupted by hirelings. God called men are getting fewer and father between. Men of character, conviction, compassion, and call once filled the pulpits of our nation. I have seen a great change in the quality of men going off to Bible College these days and these men have little capacity to stand for the things of God.

B. A few weeks ago, I preached on the subject of “Be Careful With God’s Man.” I want to forewarn our people again that God will hold the church responsible with the Pastor that God gives to them. I will give an account at the Judgment Seat of Christ for each of you according to Hebrews 13:17. You will not give an account of God’s man at the Judgment Seat, therefore, you will give an account of him in this life. Every person who mistreated or maligned the man of God in the Scripture paid the price. You may not always understand what God’s man does or agree with what he does, but—as long as he is not teaching heresy or living in open sin—follow him and leave his discipline and guidance to God. You will be glad that you did!

C. Most church members do not want a Pastor. They want a preacher to give a generic, offend no one message and visit the hospitals and funeral homes. They want preachers who are “Yes Men” and obedient to the will of the people. God called pastors have God given authority!

1 Peter 5:2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight [thereof], not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;

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.

D. The Holy Ghost spent this entire chapter vindicating the man of God before the Corinthian people. There were those in the church who maligned God’s man to the people in his absence. Verse 2 says, “bold against some.” Verse 6 says, “revenge all disobedience.” Verse 11 says, “let such an one think this.” Paul was God’s man sent to the Corinthian Church.

Let us look at the subject of “Pastoral Authority” in these verses.

1. Pastoral Authority Is To Be Tempered – vs. 1

a. Tempered with Gentleness - 2 Timothy 2:24 And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all [men], apt to teach, patient,

b. Tempered with Meekness - 2 Timothy 2:25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;

2. Pastoral Authority Is To Be Used Boldly – vs. 1-2

a. Boldness is not Dictatorship - Boldness keeps him from becoming a “Door Matt.”

b. Boldness is not Meanness – God’s man is to be loving and compassionate.

3. Pastoral Authority Is To Be Used For Edification – vs. 8

a. God’s men are not to destroy the Lord’s Heritage.

b. God’s men are to build the Lord’s Heritage.

4. Pastoral Authority Is To Be Used In Discipline – vs. 10-11

a. Paul identified the offenders – A pastor’s ear is to be always “to the ground” because this age old problem of disrespect and attack is always possible.

b. Paul isolated the offenders – vs. 11 “let such an one” He did not “take it out” on the rest of the church.

5. Pastoral Authority Is To Remain Elevated – vs. 12

a. God’s man is not just another man. He may look like just another man, but he is different.

b. God’s man is elevated. He holds the office of a Bishop or, as we call them today, a Pastor.

6. Pastoral Authority Is To Be Recognized As God Given – vs. 18

a. The Pastor is not man-called, mamma-called, or daddy sent! He is not a volunteer! He is not self-elevated to the office!

b. The Pastor is God Selected, God Called, God Anointed, God Equipped, God Led, God Chastised, and GOD PROTECTED!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Evidences Of Abiding In Christ

Temple Baptist Church - 7-20-2008

John 15:1-16


A. A couple of weeks ago, I began a miniseries on “Abiding In Christ.” Once saved, always saved; therefore, we must abide in Christ as we reside in Christ. Many do not abide in Christ because:

1. They were never born of the Vine in the first place. You cannot abide in or bear fruit for the Vine unless you are attached and the sap flows.

2.They choose to live a life of sinful disobedience which causes the branch to:

a) Dry up and fall off. This is not normal unless there is a problem with either the branch or the Vine itself. It is not a Vine problem!

b) Be broken off during the storms of life. If the branch is not strong and vibrant with life, it may well be found lying on the ground after a storm.

c) Or, Be pruned away by the Husbandman

B. One of the problems associated with the Laodicean Church Age in which we live is that of unfaithfulness. I am not speaking of unsaved church members, but of saved people who choose to live inconsistent, disobedient lives. Our Lord asked this question of His disciples, “When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” We know that He will find saved but will He find faithful? The farther we go the less we find professing believers who remain loyal to the Lord Jesus Christ.

C. It is the will of the Husbandman that each branch be healthy and prosper in fruit bearing! He prunes and purges it so that it can produce to its maximum potential.

D. I want to look at some of the evidences found in these verses of a healthy branch that abides in the Vine. There should be evidences in our lives showing our relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ as we walk in obedience to Him. Healthy branches bear both the characteristics and fruit of the Vine.

1. The Evidence Of Fruit Bearing – vs. 2-8 (I believe that all of God’s children bear fruit though the amounts may vary. How can you be in Christ and never show any evidence of the imparting of a new nature? Every child born bears some resemblance to father, mother, or both.)

a. Verse 2 – “beareth fruit”
b. Verse 2b – “more fruit”
c. Verse 5 – “much fruit”

2. The Evidence Of Answered Prayer – vs. 7

a. Answered prayer is evidence of a relationship. I could ask my earthly father and get an answer. It was not always what I either wanted or expected because I sometimes asked for the wrong things.

Luke 11:11 If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if [he ask] a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?

b. Answered Prayer is an evidence of abiding. Receiving what we asked for is a result of desiring God’s will and asking within the realm of it.

1 John 5:14-15 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: 15 And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

3. The Evidence Of Consistency – vs. 9

a. There are those believers who never stabilize! They lack spiritual growth, discernment, and faithfulness. We love them but never come to expect anything of them!

Hebrews 5:12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which [be] the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.

b. There are those believers who can always be depended upon to get the job done. They are the same, year after year. They love the Lord and that love is manifested in their lives for others of see.

Colossians 1:2 To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace [be] unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

4. The Evidence Of Obedience To Christ – vs. 10

a. Obedience unforced - Romans 6:16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?

b. Obedience born out of love - 1 John 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.

5. The Evidence Of Christian Joy – vs. 11

a. Christian contingent - Psalms 32:11 Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all [ye that are] upright in heart.

b. Christian Joy is contagious - Proverbs 15:13 A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken. Everyone loves to be around a joyful Christian!)

6. The Evidence Of Spiritual Blessing – vs. 15-16

a. The Blessing Of Being A Friend Of God - James 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

b. The Blessing Of Being Filled With God – vs. 16 “your fruit should remain” - Galatians 5:22-24 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.

Conclusion: Fruit bearing takes both a “birthing” and an “abiding!”

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Pulling Down Strong Holds

Temple Baptist Church - 7-16-2008

2 Corinthians 10:1-5


A. The Holy Spirit speaks of a spiritual warfare in these verses. We are more than a little familiar, in our day, with physical warfare with The Gulf War and Iraqi Freedom filling the headlines. Physical warfare has a known enemy and requires the combatants to use various modern weapons effectively in order to win.

B. A poorly armed army stands virtually no chance against the modern weaponry that our U. S. Army now brings to the battle field. Face to face combat with Iraq was like fighting with an unarmed man.

C. So it is with the child of God! Armed with the weapons of the flesh is of no effect against a well armed spiritual enemy. To war in the flesh is to lose in the spirit. Most of us deploy fleshly weapons long before we deploy spiritual ones and end up in a spiritual mess.

D. Therefore, we must be armed right and Ephesians 6 describes “the whole armour of God.”

Ephesians 6:11-13 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

E. I will deal with the armour of God in more detail when we get to the Book of Ephesians. I simply read these verses to reinforce the thought of spiritual warfare requires spiritual weapons!

F. Let us look at these verses again so as to understand both the war and the warfare of the Christian.

1. The Reality Of Spiritual Strong Holds – Two words are seen here. Strong: This speaks of the strength of the enemy and hold, which speaks of occupation of a territory. Webster: A fastness; a fort; a fortified place; a place of resistance. Walls of resistance erected in the soul that are opposed to the truth of God’s Word.

a. It is possible for a Christian to have satanic “strong holds” in their lives. These “strong holds” are impossibilities to the flesh.

Deuteronomy 1:28 Whither shall we go up? our brethren have discouraged our heart, saying, The people [is] greater and taller than we; the cities [are] great and walled up to heaven; and moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakims there.

b. It is possible for a Christian to bring down those satanic “strong holds” through spiritual warfare!

Joshua 6:20 So the people shouted when [the priests] blew with the trumpets: and it came to pass, when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.

Hebrews 11:30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they were compassed about seven days.

2. The Recognition Of Spiritual Strong Holds – Before we can bring them down, we must recognize what they are!

a. The “strong holds” of Habits - HABITS (habit-ation). From the Latin word habeo, meaning to have, to hold. Habit is that which is held or retained; the effect of frequent repetition. Habits become entrenched in our life through frequent repetition. Our habitation is our FREQUENT dwelling place.

1) Outward Habits – Smoking, cursing, wrath, gluttony, etc. We should manifest the fruit of the Spirit and not the fruit of the world.

2) Inward Habits – Fear, pride, anger, bitterness, greed, worry, prayerlessness, faithlessness, etc.

b. The “strong holds” of High Things – Those things that are opposing to and elevated above the knowledge of God! The knowledge that God can do the impossible and nothing is either too large or too hard for Him. He is God! High things are things raised into positions of honor, worship, and power. High things and places are idolatry.

Ecclesiastes 12:5a Also [when] they shall be afraid of [that which is] high, and fears [shall be] in the way,

1) Imaginations – Things that are not real! Things that exist in the mind. Fantasies that control our spirituality!

2) Worry – “Exalt itself against the knowledge of God.” Things though impossible, even with God! We may not say that but we often think it. Situations so seemingly large and inescapable that we lose our faith in the God of the impossible.

3. The Removal Of Spiritual Strong Holds – Now that we can recognize them, we have the ability to remove them! My Dad was a wise man and once said, “When they find a cause for cancer, then they will find a cure for cancer.” As long as they are treating the symptoms, they will never find a cure.

a. We can do “all things” through Christ who is our Strength!

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

2 Corinthians 12:10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. (Recognize them, confess them, and give that “ground” back to God.)

b. What we cannot do, God certainly can do!
Genesis 18:14a Is any thing too hard for the LORD? (Our knowledge of God tells us NO!)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Eye Of The Pharisee

Temple Baptist Church - 7-13-2008

Acts 15:1-5; Romans 14:1-23


A. I have been preaching lately on the subject of sin. Sin can manifest itself in a myriad of ways within the local church. When we think of sinfulness within the body of Christ, we normally think about such sins as adultery, fornication, drunkenness, drug abuse, etc. These sins are certainly “No-no’s” in the church, but one of the most prevalent sins of the believer is often either over looked or justified.

B. The sin of Phariseeism! On occasion, I preach on the subject that I will preach on today because it is an area of sin that remains problematic in our fundamental churches. Phariseeism! You will not find that word in your dictionary because it is one that is used within fundamental churches. Liberal churches have little or no problem with it because there is no strict adherence to the Scripture and every one does that which is “right in his own eyes.” Though it does show occasionally in other churches, Phariseeism—as a rule—is a fundamentalism problem!

C. I have said often and will reiterate again that knowledge without compassion is a dangerous thing! With great knowledge come great responsibility and that responsibility encompasses our relationship with not only the world but with each other.

D. The key verse of Romans 14 is verse 12. God requires a personal accounting at the Judgment Seat of Christ and that should be our concern. I am all for standards and holy living. I believe that it is the obligation of the believer to be non-conformist when it comes to the standards set by the world. We will give an account for the knowledge that we have and our testimony of the grace of God in this world, but THIS WILL BE A PERSONAL ACCOUNTING TO GOD—NOT TO MAN!

E. I want to call your attention to verse 10. The verse actually speaks of judgments being made by both the pharisaical brother and the brother that claims liberty in grace. The more “liberal” brother can look down on the pharisaical brother and be just as wrong in his judgments. Such words as “legalists, etc., become “straw men” that the liberal uses to vindicate his loose standard of living. Chapter 15:1 says, “We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.” This verse speaks of the “brother at liberty” as the strong.

F. When studying chapter 14, it immediately becomes obvious that the “weak” brother is the one who “eateth herbs.” I am not against a vegetarian who does so simply by personal preference. In the American Indian vocabulary, a vegetarian is one who does not know how to hunt! By “eateth herbs,” the Holy Ghost is speaking of one who abstains from meats because of “religious conviction.” You can live on a “Hallelujah Diet” as far as I am concerned and be right with God. You can live on a “Hog Diet” as far as I am concerned and still be right with God. You may see God a little sooner though!

Colossians 2:20-23 Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, 21 (Touch not; taste not; handle not; 22 Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? 23 Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh.

G. The “Eye of the Pharisee” is found in verse 10. He is characterized by the judgment of others. The Bible teaches self-judgment! I can preach on not judging one another until I am blue in the face and the problem continues to persist because the Pharisee can only see through the “eye of the Pharisee!”

1 Corinthians 11:31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.

Matthew 23:4 For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay [them] on men’s shoulders; but they [themselves] will not move them with one of their fingers.

John 9:39 -41 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind. 40 And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also? 41 Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.

H. Our Lord condemned Phariseeism!

1. Phariseeism Violates The Fellowship Of Believers – vs. 3-4 – When believers stand argue their “convictions” and “preferences,” it is just that: an argument! What I stand for is between the Lord and I! What you stand for is between the Lord and you! When what we stand for becomes an issue between you and me, it divides the fellowship of the church. Despise - to look down on with contempt or aversion.

2. Phariseeism Withstands The Man Of God - Acts 15:1-2, 5 And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, [and said], Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. 2 When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question… 5 But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command [them] to keep the law of Moses. (The enemy of Christ was the Pharisee! Even God’s man cannot withstand the scrutiny of the “letter of the law,” as can no one else. They will hold him to a holy standard that no man can attain to or they will hold him to “their” standard that even cannot live up to. Pharisees are not “followers,” they are “leaders.” They must have “followers” in order to lead! Pharisees are not “students,” they are “teachers.” They must have “students” in order to teach! Pharisees are not “edifiers,” they are “destroyers!”)

3. Phariseeism Is Detrimental To Evangelism - Matthew 23:13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in [yourselves], neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. (The Lord called the Pharisees “hypocrites.” Have you ever heard the lost say that they would not come to church and sit on the pews with all of those hypocrites? Most of the time, their claims are unjust but, on occasion, they are right! The lost hear what the Pharisee says and then see how the Pharisee both acts and reacts! How many times have I heard of people who have said, “I will never come to your church as long as “so-in-so” is there!” Or, “If he (or she) is a Christian, I do not want to be one!” Or, “If they are going to Heaven, I do not want to go there!” Or, “If that is the way their God is, then I do not want their God!”)

4. Phariseeism Drives Away The New Families And New Believers – Matthew 23:15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. (Pharisees automatically “migrate” to new “blood.” They are proselyters! Grace teaches the new converts while Phariseeism chastises them! It is not that they do not want to get right with God. God is merciful, compassionate, longsuffering, and gentle with the new believer. They leave because they cannot live up to the standards and expectations of the Pharisee. I am still glad that, when I was newly saved, people let God work in my heart as I heard the Word of God preached. God “grew” me at His pace and His way was perfect!)

2 Corinthians 3:6 Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.

5. Phariseeism Eventually Destroys the Pharisee! - Luke 11:52 Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered. (A key is made to unlock a door. Grace is the key that unlocks the door to the believer. Grace brings both love and liberty to the believer and is the key to holy living.)

Titus 2:11-12 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; (I am so glad that I was saved by GRACE! I am so glad that I have been taught by GRACE!)

Conclusion: Beware of becoming pharisaical! All of us have that potential! Pharisees not only destroy those around them, but eventually destroy themselves because—even they cannot live up to the letter of the law! We want to have a good, separated church. We want to have a loving, kind church. I believe that God can reconcile these two positions. The key to holy living is not standards set but seeing God’s people fall in love with Him!

Monday, July 7, 2008

The Lover’s Kiss!

Temple Baptist Church - 6-29-2008

Song of Solomon 1:1-2

Introduction: The word “Kiss” in one form or another is found - 46x in the Bible.

A. Much has been said in the Bible concerning the “kiss.” These instances portray both the proper and improper use of the kiss. In some of the instances of a Bible “kiss,” our hug or handshake becomes the equivalent. It is still a custom in the middle east for men to either touch cheek to cheek or to even give a brief kiss to the cheek of another.

B. The kiss is a very important element of the love relationship! It is not only a wonderful experience for the young married couple, but it is also something for the old as well.

1. It has been tainted by the world into being something casual and careless!

2. As I stated last week, someone once said, “A kiss is the baby’s right, the lover’s privilege, and the hypocrite’s mask.” Thus we find both the proper use of the kiss as well as the worldly perversion of the same.

3. Another said it this way: “A kiss is two divided by none!

C. Often, Israel will meet with one of the Palestinian groups and exchange hand shakes and I normally wonder what is behind the greeting. I want to look at the “kiss” for a few minutes and end up with this one in chapter 1:2 of S.O.S.

1. The Deceitful Kiss - Genesis 27:24-27 And he said, [Art] thou my very son Esau? And he said, I [am]. 25 And he said, Bring [it] near to me, and I will eat of my son’s venison, that my soul may bless thee. And he brought [it] near to him, and he did eat: and he brought him wine, and he drank.And his father Isaac said unto him, Come near now, and kiss me, my son. 27 And he came near, and kissed him: and he smelled the smell of his raiment, and blessed him, and said, See, the smell of my son [is] as the smell of a field which the LORD hath blessed:

2. The Reconciling Kiss - Genesis 33:4 And Esau ran to meet him, and embraced him, and fell on his neck, and kissed him: and they wept.

Genesis 27:41 And Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing wherewith his father blessed him: and Esau said in his heart, The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then will I slay my brother Jacob.

3. The Separation Kiss - Genesis 48:10, 50:1 Now the eyes of Israel were dim for age, [so that] he could not see. And he brought them near unto him; and he kissed them, and embraced them…And Joseph fell upon his father’s face, and wept upon him, and kissed him.
Acts 20:37 And they all wept sore, and fell on Paul’s neck, and kissed him, (A pledge of continuing love! I remember vividly kissing my new wife as I was being shipped overseas during my army days! A kiss of sorrow but what a kiss! It had to last me for 18 months.)

4. The Reuniting Kiss - Exodus 4:27 And the LORD said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness to meet Moses. And he went, and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him. (Family reunions were times of great kissing in the days of my youth. You had to “run the gauntlet” when you arrived.)

5. The Respectful Kiss - 1 Samuel 10:1 Then Samuel took a vial of oil, and poured [it] upon his head, and kissed him, and said, [Is it] not because the LORD hath anointed thee [to be] captain over his inheritance? (The recognition and respect of a person of position. We are to respect those in authority, not speak evil of them. Jude 1:8 “Likewise also these [filthy] dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.”)

6. The Friendship Kiss - 1 Samuel 20:41 [And] as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of [a place] toward the south, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they kissed one another, and wept one with another, until David exceeded. (A friend that sticketh closer than a brother! David and Jonathan’s love for each other exceeded that of the love of a man for a woman. It was not a sodomitish love but a bonding love of kindred spirits that lasted through life and even unto death.)

7. The Malicious Kiss - 2 Samuel 20:9-10 And Joab said to Amasa, [Art] thou in health, my brother? And Joab took Amasa by the beard with the right hand to kiss him. 10 But Amasa took no heed to the sword that [was] in Joab’s hand: so he smote him therewith in the fifth [rib], and shed out his bowels to the ground, and struck him not again; and he died. So Joab and Abishai his brother pursued after Sheba the son of Bichri.

Proverbs 27:6 Faithful [are] the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy [are] deceitful.

8. The Reconciling Kiss - Psalms 2:12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish [from] the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed [are] all they that put their trust in him. (I call this one the “makeup kiss.” The best part of arguing is making up!)

Luke 15:20 And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.

9. The Adulterous Kiss - Proverbs 7:13, 19 So she caught him, and kissed him, [and] with an impudent face said unto him, 19 For the goodman [is] not at home, he is gone a long journey:

10. The Deceitful Kiss - Mark 14:44-45 And he that betrayed him had given them a token, saying, Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he; take him, and lead [him] away safely. 45 And as soon as he was come, he goeth straightway to him, and saith, Master, master; and kissed him.

Luke 22:47-48 And while he yet spake, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near unto Jesus to kiss him. 48 But Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?

11. The Grateful Kiss - Luke 7:38, 45 And stood at his feet behind [him] weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe [them] with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed [them] with the ointment. 45 Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet.

12. The Brotherly Kiss - 1 Corinthians 16:20 All the brethren greet you. Greet ye one another with an holy kiss.

2 Corinthians 13:12 Greet one another with an holy kiss. (A holy kiss!)

1 Peter 5:14 Greet ye one another with a kiss of charity. Peace [be] with you all that are in Christ Jesus. Amen. (A loving kiss!)

D. The one that I want to deal with tonight is “The Lover’s Kiss.”

Song of Solomon 1:2 Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth: for thy love [is] better than wine. (This kiss is an evidence if both affection and emotion. Notice His willingness to bestow the kiss and our choice to “let him kiss me.” A kiss is not to be a one sided affair but is to be returned with the same passion as it is given.)

Give me a kiss, and to that kiss a score; Then to that twenty, add a hundred more: A thousand to that hundred: so kiss on, To make that thousand up a million. Treble that million, and when that is done, Let's kiss afresh, as when we first begun. To Anthea by Robert Herrick 1591-1674

Before I continue, I want to give a little “disclaimer.” This kiss, the Lover’s Kiss, is the privilege of the married! I am not going to try to glamorize to our youth tonight but show it in the light that the Holy Ghost used it in Song of Solomon. Young people, leave the kissing of this type for marriage!

THE MEANING OF THE KISS – I want to use a very personal illustration tonight to demonstrate what I am preaching about: “The Lover’s Kiss.”

I remember vividly Barbara, dressed all in green, standing and watching my plane set down as I returned home from the army. My, what a kiss! I would love to have that moment back again! There has been a history of great kisses in our marriage but that was probably the most memorial for me.

1. The Kiss Speaks Of Desire – When I saw Barbara that day at the airport, I desired her more than any other day of my life. I met her and fell head over heels in love with her in the summer of 1962. When I got out of college in 1969, we were married. Two weeks after our marriage, I received my draft notice and in July of 1969, I left for Ft. Knox, Ky. I had been overseas for 18 months when I saw her at the airport in Louisville, KY that July 9th of 1971. She was all that I wanted in my life at that time. What a day! As Bro. Ron Gearis would have said, “Oh boy! Oh boy! Oh boy!” The “Lover’s Kiss” is to be one of desire!

a. Our Lord Desires Us - Song of Solomon 7:10 I [am] my beloved’s, and his desire [is] toward me.

Psalms 40:17 But I [am] poor and needy; [yet] the Lord thinketh upon me: thou [art] my help and my deliverer; make no tarrying, O my God.

Psalms 40:5 Many, O LORD my God, [are] thy wonderful works [which] thou hast done, and thy thoughts [which are] to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee: [if] I would declare and speak [of them], they are more than can be numbered.

b. Our Desire Is To Be Toward Him – You have to desire and accept His kisses before you can ever return them!

Isaiah 26:9 With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments [are] in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.

2. The Kiss Speaks Of Delight – She was delectable! She was beautiful! She was all mine! I loved my mother (who drove her to the airport), but I did not stop at Mom. She made sure that she was out of the way as I had eyes for Barbara alone. It was one of the most wonderful days of my life. I cannot explain how if felt to be with her again after such a long abstinence. Pure delight! The “Lover’s Kiss is to be one of delight!

Psalms 18:19 He brought me forth also into a large place; he delivered me, because he delighted in me.

Psalms 37:4 Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. (It should be pure delight to be with the Lord!)

3. The Kiss Speaks Of Devotion – Those 18 months were long months but she and I kept ourselves pure. Many of the soldiers had German girl friends. GI’s were popular because they were both “taboo” and in uniform. I remember a young man who worked in the Orderly Room, a very handsome and very married young man. His wife stayed in the states like mine but he loved off post with a German girl. His wife visited once for two weeks so he moved the German girl out. When his wife left, he moved the German girl back in. I felt sorry for his wife. He was killed in an automobile accident shortly after that. I stayed pure! My wife stayed pure! When I took her into my arms in that airport, I did not have to remember with shame a German girl left behind. She was mine and I was hers! The “Lover’s Kiss” is to be one of devotion!

Hebrews 13:5 [Let your] conversation [be] without covetousness; [and be] content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

Jude 20-21 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, 21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

When God’s People Say, ‘There is no hope!'

Temple Baptist Church - 7-6-2008

Jeremiah 18:1-12


A. Jeremiah prophesied during the reign of Josiah some 50 years before the Babylonish Captivity of 587 BC. Revival permeated the land under Josiah but began to decline in his later years. Israel fell into apostasy not long after his death.

B. The story of the Potter’s house had to do with God’s love of and intent for Israel.

1. The Potter, a type of the Lord, desired to mold Israel in His hand, but Israel—the clay—was marred in His hand.

2. The marring was not the fault of the Potter, but a flaw in the clay! This marring speaks of Israel’s sinfulness and subsequent captivity of 70 years in Babylon.

3. The remaking of the clay (He did not throw it away) was the prophesied restoration of Israel to the Land after the Babylonish Captivity.

C. As I was reading in Jeremiah this week, I saw a phrase for the first time. How wonderful it is to read the Bible many times through and see something new each time you read it! In verse 12, as Jeremiah pronounced the impending doom of Israel, instead of getting right with the Lord and attempting to turn that great nation, the people said, “There is no hope!”

1. Israel’s Hopelessness - They Gave Up!
2. Israel’s Sinfulness – They Gave Over!
3. Israel’s Judgment – They Paid The Price!

D. As Israel belonged to the Lord, America was once His! God pronounced in the Bible:
Psalms 33:12 Blessed [is] the nation whose God [is] the LORD; [and] the people [whom] he hath chosen for his own inheritance.

1. America’s Motto, “In God We Trust.”
2. America’s Foundation – Religious Liberty
3. America’s Fathers – Praying Men
4. America’s Faith – God, not Allah or Buddha!

E. Today, America has now come under another scriptural pronouncement:

Psalms 9:17 The wicked shall be turned into hell, [and] all the nations that forget God.

1. As Israel, Will We Give Up? Many today preach and live hopelessness! America is still worth living and fighting for!

2. As Israel, Well God’s People Live In Sinfulness? “Eat, drink, and be merry” is the watchword. I cannot make a difference because I am one. America is a nation made up of individuals and everyone counts.

3. As Israel, Will America Fall? The answer is an obvious “Yes” if it does not turn around! If God does not judge America, He will have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah! He will not apologize!

F. Is there hope for America? Yes, there is hope.

1. There Is Hope For America As Long As There Is A Promise From God – Psalms 33:12 Blessed [is] the nation whose God [is] the LORD; [and] the people [whom] he hath chosen for his own inheritance. (If American will turn from their sinfulness, God will turn from His promised judgment! America, as a nation, still has a choice and it is not too late. When we say”God’s promises are no longer good,” THERE IS NO HOPE!)

2. There Is Hope For America As Long As There Is A People - 2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Matthew 5:13-16 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. (When we say, “It no longer matters how we represent Christ to our nation,” THERE IS NO HOPE!)

3. There Is Hope For America As Long As There Is A Prayer Prayed – 1 John 5:14-15 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: 15 And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

Jeremiah 33:3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not. (It’s never too late until it is over! I pray for America! I pray for those in authority over us! I love this land and would love to see her happy and blessed again! When we say, “Prayer no longer works,” THERE IS NO HOPE!)

4. There Is Hope For America As Long As There Is A Power To Be Tapped – Genesis 18:14a Is any thing too hard for the LORD?

Job 36:5 Behold, God [is] mighty, and despiseth not [any: he is] mighty in strength [and] wisdom.

Jeremiah 32:17 Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, [and] there is nothing too hard for thee: (God can! Man cannot but God Can! When we say, “God can’t,” THERE IS NO HOPE!)

5. There Is Hope For America As Long As There Is A Purpose – Jeremiah 38:28 So Jeremiah abode in the court of the prison until the day that Jerusalem was taken: and he was [there] when Jerusalem was taken. (God’s not done with her yet! We still have an open door of soul winning and missions. When God’s done, then America is done. Not until then! When we say, “It’s over,” THERE IS NO HOPE!)

Be Careful With God’s Man

Temple Baptist Church - 7-2-2008

2 Corinthians 10:1-18


A. In this chapter of 2 Corinthians, we find once again people within the church body withstanding the man of God. This is an age old problem as God’s Word says, “Smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered.” In the absence of Paul, there were some in the church who did not follow his leadership and did not respect his place of authority.

B. Though in a place of God given authority, Paul was not brash or proud. Paul was a very meek and gentle man.

1. Paul was a man of weak physical appearance – verse 10

2. Paul was a man of contemptible speech – verse 10

C. He loved these people as only a pastor could. He gave his life for them but there were always a few who would take advantage of his gentleness and withstand his words.

2 Corinthians 12:15 And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved.

D. Paul could be very bold and forward when the time came also. He is now writing in boldness to the church because, evidently, there had been some in the church who criticized him in his absence.

1. They said that he was doing his will and not God’s will – vs. 2b (They doubted his motives.)
2. They withstood his authority – vs. 8-11 (His authority was God given, not man given.)

3. They compared themselves with him – vs. 12-13 (Though all were saved and in Christ, Paul’s position was God ordained and he was different.)

E. Churches have been weakened and divided by the mentality that the pastor is not “permanent party” in the church. Pastors are now “outsiders” who will stay for a few years at most and the either move on or be voted out. Neither of these things are scriptural as God’s men were called of God to churches and remained there: loved, respected, and even feared. Today, out of the will of God Pulpit Committees wave “carrots” under the noses of “hireling prophets” who change churches based upon salaries and benefits instead of God’s calling. These “pastors” are not God called to churches; they are man called! Where the pastor once had the power and authority to “church” the divisive and wicked, he is now the recipient of being run off. Vote them in (which is not a biblical principle) and vote them out (which is not a biblical principle). The only biblical reasons for the pastor having to leave is open sin or heresy!

F. Paul is admonishing the church in respect to their attitude toward and treatment of God’s man. The Bible is full of examples of people who did such things and what God both said and did about it. I will give you some good, spiritual advice tonight concerning God’s man and you relationship to him. I preached on this subject some time ago so will not repeat that message but the Bible says that you are to:

1. Respect your pastor.

2. Love your pastor.

3. Trust your pastor.

4. Pray for your pastor.

5. Protect your pastor.

6. Cooperate with your pastor.

7. Encourage your pastor.

8. Appreciate your pastor.

9. Pay attention to your pastor.

G. Here are some ways in which to “Be Careful With God’s Man.”

1. Be Careful How You Treat God’s Man - 2 Timothy 4:14 Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works: (Shimei cursed David and died. The Amalekite killed God’s man and died.)

a. David had both cause and opportunity to kill Saul - 1 Samuel 26:8-11a Then said Abishai to David, God hath delivered thine enemy into thine hand this day: now therefore let me smite him, I pray thee, with the spear even to the earth at once, and I will not [smite] him the second time. 9 And David said to Abishai, Destroy him not: for who can stretch forth his hand against the LORD’S anointed, and be guiltless? 10 David said furthermore, As the LORD liveth, the LORD shall smite him; or his day shall come to die; or he shall descend into battle, and perish. 11a The LORD forbid that I should stretch forth mine hand against the LORD’S anointed:

b. Be careful how you treat him! 1 Timothy 5:1 Rebuke not an elder, but intreat [him] as a father; [and] the younger men as brethren; (Be good and gentle with him as God will keep him straight. That is not your job!)

2. Be Careful How You Speak About God’s Man – 3 John 9-10 I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. 10 Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth [them] out of the church. 11 Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God. (Korahs who have no fear to speak out or oppose God’s man.)

a. Be careful what you say to others. Speaking against God’s man brought leprosy to Miriam!

b. Be careful what you hear about God’s man! 1 Timothy 5:19 Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses. (When someone speaks against your pastor, tell them to be quiet! They normally know who will listen and who will not. They will pull you aside privately and speak against him.)

3. Be Careful How You Side Against God’s Man – 3 John 10-11 Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church. 11 Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God.

Numbers 16:23-26 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 24 Speak unto the congregation, saying, Get you up from about the tabernacle of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram. 25 And Moses rose up and went unto Dathan and Abiram; and the elders of Israel followed him. 26 And he spake unto the congregation, saying, Depart, I pray you, from the tents of these wicked men, and touch nothing of theirs, lest ye be consumed in all their sins. (When someone withstands your pastor, get away from them!)

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.

4. Be Careful And Protect God’s Man - 1 Samuel 26:15-16 And David said to Abner, [Art] not thou a [valiant] man? and who [is] like to thee in Israel? wherefore then hast thou not kept thy lord the king? for there came one of the people in to destroy the king thy lord. 16 This thing [is] not good that thou hast done. [As] the LORD liveth, ye [are] worthy to die, because ye have not kept your master, the LORD’S anointed. And now see where the king’s spear [is], and the cruse of water that [was] at his bolster. (Protect and stand up for God’s Man)

a. By Disassociation With Those Who Oppose - 2 Thessalonians 3:14 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.

b. By Association With Those Who Follow - Philippians 3:17 Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.

Conclusion: As God’s man will give an account at the Judgment Seat Of Christ for his dealings with you, I believe that you will give an account in this life for your dealings with him! Love him as he loves you and you will never regret it.