Sunday, June 14, 2009

Mine Eye Affecteth Mine Heart

Temple Baptist Church - 6-7-2009

Lamentations 3:37-51


A. Jeremiah is often called the “Weeping Prophet.” He wept over the spiritual condition of the nation of Israel. There are many of God’s men who stand for right and speak out against what is wrong but do so with a wrong spirit. May God help us to weep over the spiritual condition of America as we see the judgment of God upon the nation.

B. If “Happy is that people, whose God is the Lord” is right, then “Unhappy is the people, whose God is not the Lord” is also right. America is searching for happiness and fulfillment outside of God and the result is unfulfilled lives and deepening sinfulness.

1. America is in a Sad Shape (She is both Immoral and Insensitive)

a) We Can See America’s Sin! Her morals gone! Sex, sodomy, drugs, drink, and lawlessness permeate the land.

1) Sodomites are uncovered – As a boy, I did not know what sodomy was. What a shame! It was not spoken of and was well hid within the “closets” of America. Now the closet doors are open wide and they are in our living rooms!

2) Sodomites are unashamed – They walk through public places hand-in-hand and stare you down. They are proud and they are arrogant.

3) Sodomites are unrebuked – Both our nation and pulpits are “politically correct.” They flaunt their wickedness while the people are silent.

4) Sodomites are unchecked – they do what they want, where they want, and how they want.

b) America’s Sorrow! Our nation is filled with the killing of the innocents, greed, corrupt politicians, ungodly judges, and general apathy to all that is listed above. The “silent majority” is the “apathetic majority!

c) America’s Sinking! Judgment is not only pending, it is here! God will and is judging America. America will come down! It will not get better. It man superficially improve but the core problem both exists and increases.

2. Families are in a Sad Shape (They are permeated with division and divorce!)

a) Homes are out of Order! It’s the Children, Mom, Dad, and God last! God’s order is just the reverse!

1) Women run the homes.

2) Men are now submissive to their own wives.

3) Children get what they want and do as they desire.

4) God is left on the outside knocking on their doors.

b) Homes are broken! 70% will end prematurely in divorce. There are pre-nuptial agreements instead of deep commitments! Both young and old are shacking-up instead of getting married. There is no commitment and, therefore, they have no stability or endurance?

c) The People have all of the wrong answers!

1) They no longer listen to God’s Word.

2) They no longer listen to God’s men.

3) They no longer listen to God’s people.

4) They no longer listen to God himself! Put God first and self-gratification last and God will bless your home. Put God and His Word last and your home will not last!

3. Churches are in a Sad Shape (Apostasy-Apathy)

a) Our Pulpits Are Compromised in their Preaching! Preachers are afraid to speak up against sin. Lift up your voices like trumpets! Most had rather have numbers that holiness. The preachers prophesy falsely and the people love to have it so. Ear-tickling is the rule of the day and sin killing preaching is no longer politically correct. The churches look and act like the world. Silence and sinfulness will kill the church.

b) Our Pews are Cold in their Worship! The people are sinful and ungrateful! Worship Services are formal, dead, and unfulfilling. When purity is gone, praise will follow. Jesus Christ himself would not be welcome in the average local church of the Bible Belt. Worship, like marriage, will be lost in this generation if things do not change. Old time religion is just that: old time!

c) Our People are Calloused to their Condition! Nothing ever stirs and nothing changes! Revivals are just meetings and life goes on as usual. As one preacher said, “I will be glad when the evangelist is gone so that things can get back to normal.”

1) Churches have nothing.
2) Churches want nothing.
3) Churches expect nothing.
4) Churches will receive nothing.

d) Our churches have become:

1) Rest homes for the apathetic.
2) Sanctuaries for the sinful.
3) Recliners for the slothful.

C. Don’t get mad at me this morning!

1. I am preaching to me this morning!
2. I am preaching to you this morning!
3. I am preaching to everyone who receives this sermon outline this morning!
4. God help our families!
5. God help our children and grandchildren!
6. God help our churches!
7. We need to get right with a holy God! Then and only then can God help our nation!
8. Yes, I know what “time” it is but that becomes a copout when we defer to do right just because we live in the last days.
9. We need to make a difference!
10. We need to be light so that the lost can see and seek!
11. We need to be salt so that the lost can savor and taste that which is good!
12. Right is still right, no matter what situation ethics teaches!
13. Holy is still holy and unholy is still unholy. Sin is still and sin and unacceptable to God!

D. Jeremiah’s eye affected his heart (vs. 51). So should our eyes affect our hearts. Have we become so indifferent and calloused to sin that it no longer causes our hearts to break for our children will have to live in this sinful land after we are dead and gone?

E. So pardon me this morning and allow me to preach to our hearts for a little while. I love my family! I love my church! I love America! We need to wake up and redeem the time.

1. We need to get right! We is all inclusive. “It’s a me, it’s a me, it’s a me, O Lord, standing in the need of prayer. Not my brother, not my sister, but it’s me, O Lord, standing in the need of prayer!”

2. Then our churches will get right! God give us churches where the Word is preached, the Word is received, wickedness and worldliness is shunned, and God is welcome in every heart and serice.

3. Then our nation will have a chance to get right!

1. When we look upon sin, our hearts should fear! Looking upon sin will defile our hearts!

a. In 2 Samuel 11:1-4, David cast his eyes upon Bathsheba as she washed herself. It caused a man after God’s own heart to defile himself, her, his family, and his nation!

1) David Saw - 2
2) David Sent - 3
3) David Sinned - 4

b. In 2 Peter 2:8, we find that righteous Lot—dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing—vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds. (We are in the world but are not to be of the world.)

1 Thessalonians 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.

Psalms 101:2-3 I will behave myself wisely in a perfect way. O when wilt thou come unto me? I will walk within my house with a perfect heart. I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me. (Be careful little ears what you hear. Be careful little eyes what you see. Be careful little hands what you do. Be careful little feet where you go.)

2. When we look upon our nation, our hearts should break! America is failing fast and you had better believe it! (Lam 3:37-51)

a. Looking upon our nation’s condition should bring soul searching – vs. 41
b. Looking upon our nation’s condition should bring repentance – vs. 42
c. Looking upon our nation’s condition should bring weeping – vs. 48-49
d. Looking upon our nation’s condition should bring intercession – vs. 49-50

3. When we look upon the perishing harvest, our hearts should weep! Perishing sinners should burden our hearts! - Jeremiah 8:19-22 Behold the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people because of them that dwell in a far country: Is not the LORD in Zion? is not her king in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with strange vanities? 20 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. 21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment hath taken hold on me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?

John 4:35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.

a. We need to weep for souls - Lamentations 1:16 For these things I weep; mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water, because the comforter that should relieve my soul is far from me: my children are desolate, because the enemy prevailed.

b. We need to witness to souls - Daniel 12:3 And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.

c. We need to sacrifice for souls - 2 Corinthians 8:1-4 Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia; 2 How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality. 3 For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves; 4 Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.

4. When we look upon the times, our hearts should be thrilled! - Luke 21:28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh. (I know that the interpretation is to Israel but the application is to us.)

a. Thrilled because our suffering is short – 2 Corinthians 4:17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;

1 Peter 1:6 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: (Thank the Lord it is almost over. No tears to dim the eye, not sickness to rack the body, no worries to annoy, no devil to attack us, and not wicked flesh to put up with.)

b. Thrilled because our bridegroom cometh - Titus 2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; (Even so come, Lord Jesus!)

Song of Solomon 2:10 My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.

c. Thrilled because our eternal home is near - Revelation 21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. (That sounds like home to me! Like where I want to be!)

5. Looking Upon The Saviour Should Turn The Sinner’s Heart - Zechariah 12:10 And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. (Once again, I know that this speaks of Israel but what an application to the sinner.)

a. They should see the Spirit of grace - 10
b. They should see the Saviour they pierced - 10
c. They should mourn for the sin they committed - 10

Conclusion: May God open our eyes so that our hearts will be affected.

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