Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians

Temple Baptist Church - 6-30-2010

Ephesians 1:15-23


A. The Apostle Paul ends up the first chapter of Ephesians with an explanation to the church as to how he prays for them. I believe that it is important for the man of God to faithfully pray for those whom God has given to him.

B. Prayer has so many aspects that we will not deal with all of them tonight but I do want to look at what the Holy Spirit penned down for us concerning the prayer for the church by God’s man.

C. I find it most interesting to note what the Apostle Paul did not pray for in this chapter. Normally, you and I spend much more time praying for temporal things than we do eternal ones. Do not misunderstand me because we are to pray for the temporal also.

1. We pray for our temporal needs such as food, shelter, clothing, etc. You have not because you ask not and God wants us to pray for our “daily bread!” There is nothing wrong with that prayer.

2. We pray for our personal circumstances. At times, we find ourselves in a “fix” as concerning our present or near future problems. We prepare to meet these challenges but also realize that “safety is of the Lord.” We need for God to “turn the hearts” of the kings whithersoever He wills. God can work in hearts and do what we cannot.

3. We pray for the forgiveness of our sins and the sins of others. It is of no little interest how many times in the Bible that men of God confessed not only their own personal sins but also the sins of others. Job pray and sacrificed for his children just in case they had sinned. Nehemiah and others confessed both their sins and the sins of others.

D. In all of Paul’s prayers for the churches, not once does he pray for their material things. He does not pray that they prosper financially. His prayer for God’s people is that they prosper spiritually.

E. God has already promised to meet our needs. Seeking first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness brings about “and all these things shall be added unto you.” I want to look at this particular prayer tonight for a few minutes to help both you and me.

1. Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians was one of Thanksgiving. Vs. 16.

Philippians 1:3-5 I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, (4) Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, (5) For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now;

a. Pastors need to learn to be thankful for the “sheep” that God has given to them to watch over. It is easy to fret over those who have left and pray for God to add new people to the church while making little over those who have stayed faithfully be the stuff. People who love you, people who pray for you, people who labor with you, people who suffer with you, and people who are the dearest friends on this earth to you!

b. I want people to stay; I want people added; but I remember sitting on the porch shortly after we came here and telling Barbara that if we went to heaven with just the people that we had at that time, it would be wonderful. I thank God for you! Paul was thankful for the believers at Ephesus.

2. Paul prayer for the Ephesians was one for Knowledge. Vs. 17.

2 Timothy 1:12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.

a. The Christian life is one of learning to walk with the Lord. It is easy to walk with Him in the good times and, Oh how sweet it is! It is also learning to walk with Him in the hard times, in the dark times when He seems so far away, in the confused times when you do not understand, when you have been hurt and persecuted for right.

b. The Christian life is one of learning to trust when you cannot see, pray when you do not know how, and be faithful when your every instinct is to throw up your hands and quit.

c. Paul wanted them to get to know the Lord that he had learned to know. Life is a learning experience where tribulation worketh patience, patience experience, and experience hope!

3. Paul prayer for the Ephesians was one for Understanding. Vs. 18.

Colossians 1:9 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

a. To understand a Place - Hebrews 11:8-10 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. (9) By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: (10) For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.

b. To understand a Prize - 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; (18) While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

1 Peter 1:4 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,

c. To understand a Power - Ephesians 3:20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, (A power far greater than all of our difficulties and circumstances, a power far greater than all of our temporal needs.)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Division In The Church

Temple Baptist Church - 6-27-2010

Matthew 12:24-30

Introduction: The pastor’s nightmare! Division!

A. I would say that the subject of division is one that I preach on more than any else, especially over the past few years as the coming of our Lord draws nigh. I have preached and will continue to preach against division with the local church body because it is imperative that we remain united and strong as the work of the Lord is of the utmost importance. This type of preaching is not a new thing nor can it be a sporadic one. It must be preached often with a no-nonsense approach.

B. Satan has pulled out all of the “stops” in his unending efforts to destroy the effectiveness of the local church. The most important unit on the face of the earth other than the family is the local church. Satan hates the local Church! We must not be ignorant of Satan’s devices and one of his best is that of division.

C. There are a multitude of Baptist churches at this time that are without a pastor with some of them having “run the pastor off” because of division. At times, wicked people get in the church and divide but, more often than not, saved people get their priorities wrong and strive, one with another.

1. Church Division Comes Through Carnality – James 3:16 For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.

1 Corinthians 14:33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

2. Church Division Comes Through Biblical Ignorance - Ephesians 4:2-7 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.

3. Church Division Comes Through False Brethren - 3 John 9-11 I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. 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. 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.

Acts 20:28-31 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. 29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. 31 Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.

4. Church Division Comes Through Satanic Influence - 2 Corinthians 2:10-11 To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ; Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.

D. Division causes much damage to the local church by:

1. Division Destroys The Fellowship Of The Church. (People sit on the pews of the church with malice and unforgiveness in their hearts. They are Achans!)

2. Division Destroys The Commission Of The Church. (Missions has been damaged because of gaining a family and then loosing a family through spiritual nonsense!)

3. Division Destroys The Testimony Of The Church. (Church fights and splits have been detrimental to the prosperity of the church, both physically and financially.)

4. Division Destroys The Posterity Of The Church. (Children both see and hear the ungodliness of the parents. It affects their spirituality and, eventually, they are lost.)

5. Division Destroys The Worship Of The Church. (God and His Holy Spirit are grieved with this division and worship is neither holy nor acceptable.)

6. Division Destroys The Evangelism Of The Church. (Instead of keeping our eyes upon the harvest and doing all that we can to win souls, our time is spent in bitterness and souls are lost.)

7. Division Hinders The Prayers Of The Saints. (Malice and unforgiveness are sins and when we regard iniquity in our hearts, our prayers go unheard.)

What Division Will Do

1. Division Damages The Believer.

a. It Will Divide You From The Pastor – Your Friend

b. It Will Divide You From The Pulpit – God’s Message

c. It Will Divide You From The People – Your Brethren

d. It Will Divide You From The Peace Of God – Your Joy

e. It Will Divide You From The Place – God’s House

f. It Will Divide You From The Purpose – God’s Harvest

2. Division Brings Reproach Upon The Name Of Christ

a. It Brings Division Into The Local Church

b. It Brings Confusion Of The Church’s Purpose

c. It Brings Reproach Upon The Testimony Of The Local Church

d. Ultimately, It Damns Sinners To A Devil’s Hell

How To Stop Division!

1. Always Give Others The Benefit Of The Doubt - 1 Corinthians 13:5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

2. Learn To Forgive And To Forget - Ephesians 4:31-32 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

3. Keep Your Eye Focused Upon The Purpose - Philippians 1:27 Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;

Philippians 3:16 Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing.

4. Esteem Others Better Than Self - Philippians 2:3 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

Philippians 2:1-4 If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.

5. Stop Gossip Dead In Its Tracks - Proverbs 6:16-19 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

The Fullness Of Time

Temple Baptist Church - 6-27-2010

Galatians 4:4


A. Galatians 4:4 speaks of the First Advent or the Birth of Christ. The nation of Israel had long expected the “seed of the woman,” their Messiah, to come. A little over two thousand years ago, God fulfilled His promise of the Saviour of the world.

1. Christ came at the Right Time

2. Christ came in the Right Way

3. Christ came in complete fulfillment of Prophecy

4. Christ not only came right, He lived Right

5. Christ died Right

6. Christ resurrected Right

7. Christ did all things Right

B. I said all of that to say this: everything comes to pass in the “fullness of time!”

1. The Bible declares that there is a season for every purpose under heaven. As seasons change, so do our circumstances. A man once said that “good things happen to bad people and bad things happen to good people but neither one of them will stay that way.”

2. There are “dispensations” mentioned in the Bible which are specified administrations, stewardships, or economies. Ephesians 1:10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:

3. The phrase “fullness of time” means that thee is an allotted time for a certain event to run its course and an expected action is required by God to end that event.

4. As finite beings, we do not know the exact length of these events unless it is specified in the Bible. Acts 1:7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.

C. Here are just a few things that will run their courses in time.

1. In The Fullness Of Time, Sin Will Run Its Course - James 1:15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. (Though a sinner live an hundred years, the Bible says that it will not be well with him. A person may seem to get away with sinfulness for a while but it will come to a devastating end.)

2. In The Fullness Of Time, Salvation’s Call Will Run Its Course - Isaiah 55:6 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: (Today is the day of salvation with no promise of either a tomorrow or a second chance.)

3. In The Fullness Of Time, Sorrow Will Run Its Course - Psalms 30:5 For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. (I have found that time is a great healer and, no matter how great the loss, there will be better days ahead.)

4. In The Fullness Of Time, Sickness Will Run Its Course - Psalms 103:3 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; (One way or the other! God will either heal physically or eternally.)

5. In The Fullness Of Time, Suffering Will Run Its Course - 1 Peter 1:6 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: (Circumstances will one day change for those who suffer. Life is often a “roller coaster” with highs and lows. There are both mountain tops and valleys in life.)

6. In The Fullness Of Time, Satan’s Reign Will Run Its Course - Revelation 12:12 Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. (There is coming a day when his power and influence will no longer be. Hell was prepared for him and his angels and the time of their incarceration is nearing.)

7. In The Fullness Of Time, States Will Run Their Course - Psalms 9:17 The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God. (God sets nations up and takes nations down. Empire after empire has risen to its zenith of power only to fall. America had better take note of the great empires that went before her.)

8. In The Fullness Of Time, This Sin Cursed World Will Run Its Course - Hebrews 1:10-12 And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: (11) They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; (12) And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. (This wonderful world will be once again as it was in the beginning and we will be home. The Lord will come again and it may be today.)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Person And Work Of The Holy Spirit

Temple Baptist Church - 6-23-2010

Ephesians 1:13-14


A. Very little is preached on the Person and work of the Holy Spirit; therefore, most believers do not fully understand either who He is or what He does. Very little preaching has been done on His Person and work which has added to the confusion.

B. The Pentecostal and Charismatic movements place a wrong emphasis upon the Holy Spirit (Holy Ghost) as well as giving Him credit for things that He does not do. Their emphasis is upon unknown tongues and gifts that no longer exist in this church age.

1. People are “slain in the spirit” though there is not one reference to such action in the Bible. I have only found people slain by the Spirit.

2. People speak in an “unknown tongue” while breaking every rule in the Bible given to regulate tongues in the first century.

3. People speak of “Holy Ghost Revivals” which glorify the Holy Ghost. The Holy Spirit never calls attention to Himself in the bible and always points people to Christ. He always magnifies the Person and work of our Lord Jesus Christ.

John 16:13-14 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. (14) He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

4. People do things that are against clear Scripture while placing the blame for their unscriptural acts on the Holy Ghost while our Lord said that the Scripture cannot be broken.

5. While they place an improper emphasis on the Holy Spirit, others often do not place enough emphasis upon Him.

C. First of all, let us look at what the Holy Spirit is not:

1. He is not Non-Existent! There are many who simply deny the presence of a triune God. Such cults as Jehovah’s Witnesses and the “Jesus Only” branch of Pentecostalism deny the trinity.

2. He is not simply an Influence! There are those who say that the Holy Ghost is not a person but just the result or influence of the powerful working of God. I have hands and those hands are able to influence or do things. This is their perspective.

3. He is not your Conscience! No doubt He is able to influence, convict, or persuade your conscience but lost people have a conscience as well as the saved.

D. Here are just some of the Holy Spirit’s characteristics:

1. The Holy Spirit is a Person.

a) He can be grieved - Ephesians 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. (Grieve means to be in heaviness or to make one sorry! When Esau married one of the daughters of the land, it was a “grief” to his parents. The Holy Spirit has feelings.)

b) He can be resisted - Acts 7:51 Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. (Resist means to oppose or to be in opposition to. The Holy Spirit has a will or purpose.)

c) He can be quenched - 1 Thessalonians 5:19 Quench not the Spirit. (Quench means to extinguish or to put out. The Holy Spirit can be ignored or supressed.)

d) He can be blasphemed - Mark 3:29 But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation: (Blaspheme means to defame or speak evil of.)

e) He can be lied to - Acts 5:3 But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?

f) He speaks - Acts 13:2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.

2. He is God. All through the Bible, we find evidence concerning the plurality of God.

a) As God He is eternal - Hebrews 9:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

The first mention of the word God is found in Genesis 1:1: “In the beginning God.” The word for God is Elohim which is plural.

Genesis 1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image…”

Genesis 11:7 Go to, let us go down…”

1) The first mention of the Holy Spirit is found in Genesis 1:2 which says, “And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” (Capital “S” is a direct reference to deity.)

2) The last mention of the Trinity - 1 John 5:7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

b) As God He is omniscient - 1 Corinthians 2:10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

c) As God He is omnipotent - 1 John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

d) As God He is omnipresent - Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

E. A good theological statement concerning the trinity of God is this: God is one God, manifesting Himself in three persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. These three are co-equal in all power and attributes.

F. There are many aspects of the work of the Holy Spirit. His work is both a past and present work but I want to deal with His work in the life of both the saved and lost:

1. He Aided In Creation - Genesis 1:2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

2. He Inspired The Scripture - 2 Peter 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

2 Samuel 23:2 The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and his word was in my tongue.

3. He supplied the Holy Seed of the Woman - Matthew 1:18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.

4. He Strives With The Sinner - Genesis 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

5. He Convicts And Convinces The Sinner - John 16:8-11 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: (9) Of sin, because they believe not on me; (10) Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; (11) Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.

John 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

6. He Converts The Sinner - John 3:3-7 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. (4) Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? (5) Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. (6) That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. (7) Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

7. He Baptizes The Convert Into The Body - 1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

8. He Seals The Believer - Ephesians 1:13-14 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, 14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

Ephesians 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.

2 Corinthians 1:22 Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts. (Down payment or a pledge of good faith.)

9. He Indwells The Believer - Corinthians 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? (20) For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.

Romans 8:9-11 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. (10) And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. (11) But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

10. He Gives Assurance To The Believer - Romans 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

11. He Transforms The Believer - 2 Corinthians 3:18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

12. He brings liberty to the Believer - 2 Corinthians 3:17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

13. He Guides The Believer - Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

John 16:13-15 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. (14) He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you. (15) All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

14. He Helps The Believer In Prayer - Ephesians 6:18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

15. He Prays For The Believer - Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

16. He Fellowships With The Believer - 2 Corinthians 13:14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.

17. He Fills The Believer - Ephesians 5:18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

18. He Produces Fruit In The Believer - Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, (23) Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

19. He Gives Discernment To The Believer - 1 Corinthians 2:13-14 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. (14) But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

20. He Gives Gifts To The Believer - 1 Corinthians 12:4-7 Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. (5) And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. (6) And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. (7) But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.

21. He Teaches The Believer - 1 John 2:27 But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.

John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

1 John 2:20 But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.

1 Corinthians 2:7-10 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: (8) Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. (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. (10) But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

22. He Anoints The Believer - Isaiah 61:1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; (Approval, choosing, and empowering for service.)
Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

Acts 13:2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.

23. He Comforts The Believer - John 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

24. He Gives Boldness To The Believer - Acts 4:31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

Conclusion: This is not intended to be a complete study on Pneumatology or the Doctrine of the Holy Spirit but simply meant to enlighten us as to the wonderful work that He does in both bringing us to Christ and meeting every need until we get home.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Getting To Know God’s Man

Temple Baptist Church - 6-20-2010

1 Thessalonians 5:12-13


A. As I preach on the subject of “The Church,” I will often deal with the “Church-Pastor” relationship. There are two major problems in this particular relationship that have hurt our churches.

1. Churches that have dictators in the pulpit. 1 Peter 5:2-3 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; (3) Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. (These will hurt and scatter the church.)

2. Churches that do not submit to pastoral authority. 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. (These will be self-governing and the church will be run by deacons, trustees, families, or individuals instead of by the Bible.)

B. In order for the church to function right, this relationship must be a biblical one. Much of the problems above are because of simple misunderstanding.

1. The dictator does not realize that these are God’s children or sheep. You belong to the Lord and I am one of you. 1 Peter 5:3 called you “God’s heritage.”

Psalms 127:3 Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.

Psalms 100:3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

2. The people do not realize that the pastor is God’s man.

Ephesians 4:11-12 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:

C. A twofold problem exists today that is hindering greatly the pastor-church relationship.

1. Pastors are constantly moving. A few years ago, a survey said that the average stay of a pastor in a Baptist church was 18 months. When they get to know the people or their sermons run out, they begin to look for greener pastures. These churches are often run by deacon boards, trustees, or influential families.

2. People are constantly moving. We have as many people leaving through the back doors of the church as we have coming through the front doors. Many are leaving liberal churches just to find out that fundamental churches are too conservative for them. They live in a spiritual “no man’s land.” Many are fault finders who are looking for a perfect church (in their eyes) that does not require them to be perfect.

D. Because of such problems as the above, people never really get to know their pastor in a biblical way and the pastor does not get to know them!

E. The bible says to “Know them.” Most people never understand their pastor. Paul, when writing to the Corinthian Church, rebuked the divisions that were brought about through this ignorance. The Corinthian believer’s perspective was off. Not having a proper perspective of God’s man will cause you to do one of two things.

1. It will cause you to elevate your pastor to a plane of perfection that he cannot fulfill and, if he falls, you will fall with him.

2. Or, it will cause you to lower your pastor to a position of disrespect and, therefore, render his influence ineffectual and he will not be able to help you.

How To Get To Know Your Pastor

1. Get To Know Him As A Person. 1 Corinthians 2:3 And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

True, he is God’s man but he is also just a man. His wife is just a lady and his children are just children.

a. He has feelings

b. He has faults

c. He has failures

d. He desires only the best for you.

e. He desires only the best for your family.

f. He desires only the best for the church.

g. Do not hurt him or his family and do not let anyone else do so.

h. Do not listen to slander because he will be slandered.

i. Be careful how you treat him.

j. Be careful how you talk about him.

k. You love and protect his family as he does yours!

2. God To Know Him As A Pastor. Matthew 9:36 says, “But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.” You need a pastor! God made it that way! Your children need a pastor and the way you know your pastor is going to dictate how they get to know him. Sheep without a shepherd will soon lose their direction, scatter, and fall pray to their enemies. God’s people are like sheep. You do not need an Interim Pastor! You need a God called, God sent Pastor!

a. He is your gift.

b. He is your friend.

c. He loves the Lord.

d. He loves the Word.

e. He loves the saints.

f. He loves the sinner.

g. He loves you!

3. Get To Know Him As A Preacher. 1 Thessalonians 2:13 For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.

a. Hear what he has to say.

b. Honor what he has to say.

c. Heed what he has to say.

4. Get To Know Him As A Protector. Acts 20:29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.

a. He watches over you.

b. He worries over you.

c. He wars for you.

What A Wonderful Father

Temple Baptist Church - 6-20-2010

Job 1:1-5; 42:16-17


A. For Father’s Day 2010, I wanted to use an example of a man well known to us all for what is thought to be the oldest book in the Bible. The Book of Job was written before the giving of the Law and was probably dated during the Patriarchal Age.

B. The Book of Job is primarily noted for the patience of Job in suffering but I want to look at just a few verses that opened and closed this beautiful, poetical book. In our verses that we read this morning, we saw both Job’s beginning and Job’s end.

C. Our life, both physical and spiritual, has a beginning and an end with a certain amount of years in between. Though what is in the middle of our lives molds our character, it is of immense importance that we to both begin and end right!

D. Job ended right! Our circumstances may be harsh and out of our control at times but how we end up is left up to us. Job’s life was one of:

1. Life at its best! He had a good family; he had great riches; he was well respected by his peers; and was certainly blessed of Gld.

2. Life at its worst! Because of circumstances beyond his control, he lost almost all! He lost his family; he lost his riches; he lost the respect of others; and he lost his health. I said, “Almost all.” I thank God this morning that Job never lost his Lord!

E. In this book, we see Job:

1. In the hands of Satan – Tribulation (Satan did all in his power to hurt God’s man.)

2. In the hands of Men – Testing (Men indicted Job unjustly through misunderstanding.)

3. In the hands of God – Triumph (The Lord sustained and rewarded Job!)

F. Job’s life is a story of prosperity, piety, providence, patience, protection, provision, and promise.

G. We find, in the end of his life (he lived 140 years after his testing), a man surrounded by his children, grandchildren with a double blessing from God. This is not my message but I do want to tell my church and my family to “hang in there!” God is still God and God is still good!

H. What made Job a great Father and Grandfather? Let us look a few verses in the beginning of the book.

1. Job was a Man! Vs. 1 “Perfect” or mature - Job was a real man’s man. We live in a day of soft men and sissies. “God give us some men that act and rule like men!” Strength coupled with gentleness and compassion. “God give us some real men!”

2. Job was a good Man! Vs. 1 – “Upright…eschewed evil” (Upright literally means that he was “straight!” The word “eschewed” means to be against or to put away. ) He was a man of both conviction and integrity. He did right; he hated wrong; his life bore out his convictions; and his word was his bond! He could be followed and the follower be found safe in his steps. “God, give us some good men!”

3. Job was a saved Man! Vs. 1 – “Feared God” The Lord, in verse 8, said, “there is none like him in the earth!” He was saved and loved the Lord with all of his heart. “God, give us some saved men!”

4. Job was trusted Man! Vs. 3 – God could trust him with Prosperity. Vs. 21-22 – God could trust him with Poverty! Few men can be trusted with prosperity and even less with poverty. “God, give us some trusted men!”

5. Job was a family Man! Vs. 5 – His heart was not on his riches or renown. His heart was stayed upon his family. His family came second only to God in his life. His love and concern for his family was greater far than all of the riches and renown found in this world. “God, give us some family men!”

6. Job was a sacrificing Man! Vs. 5 – He offered and prayed for the “number of them all.” “Thus did Job continually.” He prayed for them when they were not praying for themselves. “God, give us some sacrificing Fathers!” “God, give us some praying Fathers!”

7. Job was a faithful Man! Vs. 21-22 - James 5:11 “Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.” “God, give us some faithful men!”

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Salvation: Plain And Simple

Temple Baptist Church - 6-6-2010

Isaiah 45:20-25


A. Tonight, I will have the pleasure; the privilege to baptize one of our young ladies. I want to say with the Apostle John, “I have no greater joy” than to see our children come to Christ and walk in the ways of truth! What a blessing to see them saved at an early age and grow up to live for Christ.

1. Saved at an early age before Satan has a chance to defile or destroy them.

2. Saved at an early age while their hearts are still tender.

3. Saved at an early age while their lives are still pure and useable.

B. Praise the Lord! I thank God that He is still in the saving business and Heaven gets sweeter every day!

C. Salvation has been confused by so many and made difficult to understand by many others. The world has added to faith for salvation while soul winners have made it hard to be understand. Good Bible terms such as "saved", "blood bought"; "blood washed"; "born again"; "redeemed" are used but are confusing to those who do not understand them. Tonight, I want to make it as simple as the Bible makes it simple.

D. In verse 21, we see that the Lord is:

1. A Just God – the holiness of God demands divine justice! Sin must be paid for and no sin goes unnoticed.

Leviticus 19:2 Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the LORD your God [am] holy.

Psalms 7:11 God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry [with the wicked] every day.

2. A Saviour – the love of God declares a simple salvation! Salvation has been complicated through false teachings with the god of this world blinding the minds of the lost.

2 Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

1 Corinthians 15:3-4 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

1. The Source Of Salvation – vs. 22 - "Look unto ME"; "I am God and there is none else."

a. This verse is crystal clear! There is no doubt that God says that salvation can only be found in Him alone! There is only one road to Heaven; there is only one remedy for sin; there is but one way to escape from Hell; and that is through God's salvation.

b. Salvation does not come through the church, the baptistery, a denomination, or through family associations. It comes only through Jesus Christ.

c. Salvation can not be obtained through good deeds and clean living. It comes only through Jesus Christ.

d. This verse makes it clear that Jesus Christ is the only way that man can come to God. If a man must have a million dollars to be called a millionaire, then he must have Christ to be called a Christian, 1 John 5:12.

e. No one goes to Heaven because they are a Baptist or anything else. They do not get to go because they are good people. They do not get to go because they have done good things or because they have been a good person. A person goes to Heaven because he is in a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

My hope is built on nothing less,
than Jesus' blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
but wholly lean on Jesus' name.
On Christ the solid rock I stand,
All other ground is sinking sand,
All other ground is seeking sand.

2. The Scope Of Salvation – vs. 22 - "All the ends of the earth."

a. One of the truths about God's salvation that makes it so great is the fact that it is for every individual in the whole world! It is not offered to a select few, but to "whosoever will".

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Romans 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Revelation 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

b. When Jesus Christ went to the cross and died for sin, He was dying for all mankind! The cross is proof that God loves you and I.

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

Hebrews 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.

3. The Simplicity Of Salvation – vs. 22 - "LOOK unto me"

a. Notice carefully the wording of the text. Does it say "Look unto me and be and be baptized and join the church."? No! Does it say, "Look unto me and pay your tithes."? No! Does it say, "Look unto me and live right."? No! Does it say, "Look unto me, turn over a new leaf and promise never to sin again."? No! It merely says "Look unto me."

b. Salvation is so simple that people often stumble over it. They have a hard time believing that it can be so simple. But, the Gospel can be related by reading 2 verses:

1 Corinthians 15:3-4 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
Romans 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

4. The Security Of Salvation – vs. 22 - "and be ye saved."

a. The Bible says that those who look to the Lord will be saved.

b. When Jesus saves a lost soul, He does it eternally! He does it forever!

John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

John 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand.

Conclusion: Do you have that kind of salvation? Do you know for sure that you are saved and on your way to Heaven? My heart’s desire for Temple is that every member be saved and sure.

The Old Path Of Separation

Temple Baptist Church - 6-6-2010

Hebrews 13:13-16

Introduction: Jeremiah 6:16 Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

A. Before we can move on to the “Old Path Of Separation,” we must have the “Old Path Of Scripture” settled. Here is the reason why: with no final authority to rely upon, every man will do that which is “right in his own eyes.” It is simply human nature! As a pastor, I have found that when you have no strict Bible standard (King James) separation begins to deteriorate. When you get off on the Bible, you get off on everything else over a period of time. With the controversy over which line of texts is right and over which bible is right, lack of separation came. No Bible equals no holiness!

B. God’s people have always been separate from this present evil world. Enoch was separate as He walked with God. Noah was separate as he was upright in his generations while the sons of God intermarried. Abraham was a pilgrim in the land of Canaan. Israel was to be a separate nation. They were to neither intermingle nor intermarry with the nations around them. The New Testament Church is no different. God has never changed His mind and neither should we. Separation is for several reasons:

1. Lack of separation destroys our holiness.

2. Lack of separation destroys our families.

3. Lack of separation destroys our testimony.

4. Lack of separation destroys our usefulness.

C. We that are saved are in the world but are not to be of the world. We have no choice concerning living here but we do have a choice about how we live here. I want to look at three areas of separation that the Bible makes mention of:

1. Separate In Our Walk

a. In Our Walk - Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. (2) And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

b. In Our Companionship - 1 Corinthians 5:9-13 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: (10) Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. (11) But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat. (12) For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within? (13) But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.

2. Separate In Our Worship

a. Ecclesiastically - 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? (15) And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? (16) And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. (17) Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, (18) And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

b. Doctrinally – 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.

Conclusion: What is the results of a lack of biblical separation?

a. Agreement with the World - Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?

b. Disagreement with the Lord - James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

God’s Wisdom And Prudence

Temple Baptist Church - 6-2-2010

Ephesians 1:7-10


A. Ephesians is a wonderful book that gives insight into the wisdom and will of God for the believer. What a rich, wonderful book! In the first chapter, we see the infinite wisdom of God in both his foreknowledge and ability to carry out to perfection His sovereign will concerning mankind.

B. In verse 8, we find two words: wisdom and prudence in relation to God’s dealings with you and I. Not just wisdom but all wisdom; not just prudence but all prudence. God is all wise as He is wisdom personified.

C. I want to give a short definition of these two words:

1. Wisdom - a deep understanding and realizing of people, things, events or situations, resulting in the ability to choose or act to consistently produce the optimum results with a minimum of time and energy. Wisdom is the ability to optimally (effectively and efficiently) apply perceptions and knowledge and so produce the desired results. Wisdom is comprehension of what is true or right coupled with optimum judgment as to action.

2. Prudence - Careful management; economy

D. God knows everything about us: not only what we are doing but also what we will do in every circumstance of life.

Psalms 139:1-6 O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me. 2 Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. 3 Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. 4 For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether. 5 Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.

E. God not only knows everything about us but He also cares about every aspect of our lives.

Matthew 10:29-31 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. 30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.

F. With these two things in mind, we know that we can trust Him to meet every need that we have both now and forever!

1. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man would sin. Psalms 39:5 Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity. Selah.

In God’s Prudence, He made a sacrifice for sin. Leviticus 17:11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.

2. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man would not come to Him. Genesis 3:7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.

In God’s Prudence, He came to man. John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

3. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man could not save himself. Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.

In God’s Prudence, He provided His son. John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

4. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man could not remain saved. Romans 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

In God’s Prudence, He provided man with an eternal salvation. 1 John 5:11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

5. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man would need comfort. John 16:20 Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.

In God’s Prudence, He gave to man His Holy Spirit. John 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

6. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man needed constant help. John 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

In God’s Prudence, He gave man His Word. Psalms 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

7. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man would often be lonely. Psalms 142:4 I looked on my right hand, and beheld, but there was no man that would know me: refuge failed me; no man cared for my soul.

In God’s Prudence, He said I will be there with and for you. 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.

8. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man would have troubles. Job 14:1 Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble.

In God’s Prudence, He gave abundant grace. 2 Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

9. In God’s Wisdom, He knew that man would need an eternal home. Ecclesiastes 12:5 Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high, and fears shall be in the way, and the almond tree shall flourish, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail: because man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about the streets:

In God’s Prudence, He made the New Jerusalem. John 14:2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.