Sunday, June 19, 2016

Abstain From All Appearance Of Evil

Temple Baptist Church - 6-19-2016
1 Thessalonians 5:22

A.  This message actually ties in with the one that I preached last Sunday night.  “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.
1.  in order to “prove all things,” we need to understand that we are in this world and will be exposed to many things that are wicked, distasteful, tantalizing to the flesh, etc. and there is nothing that we can do about it.  If you would allow me, I want to pull a text out of context for a moment:
1 Corinthians 14:10  There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification.  (We are exposed to many voices and have to learn to Scripturally distinguish them as to good or bad through the Bible.)
2.  Then, when proven, we are to “love not” the things that are against the Scripture and stay away from them!
1 John 2:15-17  Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.  (16)  For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.  (17)  And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
3.  Our Lord not only left us in the world but also sent us to the world (Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15) to win them to Christ.
1 Corinthians 5:9-10  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.  (Every creature needs a preacher!)
Romans 10:14  How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
4.  These are “beautiful” feet that carry the gospel to people enslaved by sin and, to carry the gospel to them, we MUST go to where they are.
Romans 10:15  And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
B.  Now, we have to “hold fast that which is good” and “abstain” from that which is not while being around it on every hand.
1.  This does not mean that we are to go everywhere!  There are some places that I refuse to go.  The “Pastor of Bourbon Street,” who preached New Orleans, LA and in the “joints” thereof, Bob Harrington (not our Bob Harrington J ), fell prey to the sinfulness of his flesh by not doing what I will preach about tonight.
2.  By holding fast that which is good, we are to have unshakable Biblical convictions and enough obedience to the Holy Spirit to know where and when to go.  I do not go into the dives of this world but rather wait until the sinner comes out
C.  Let us break down our verse and then give some good, Biblical advice.
1.  Abstain – to refrain from or to hold oneself off.  Safe conduct!
2.  From – departure, cessation, separation.  To keep at a spiritual distance!
3.  All – The Greek word for “all” is “all.”  All means all and that’s all that all means.
4.  Appearance – shape or fashion.  Not what we are told that it is but what we see that it is.
5.  Evil – morally wrong, harmful, or malicious.
D.  How to abstain.
1.  Stay in the Bible - Psalms 119:9-11  BETH. Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.  (10)  With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments.  (11)  Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
2.  Stay close to the LORD - John 8:12  Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
3.  Follow the leading of the Holy Ghost - 1 John 2:20-21  But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.  (21)  I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth.
4.  Know your weaknesses - 1 Corinthians 2:3  And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.
5.  Guard your strengths - Galatians 6:1  Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.

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