Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The Pastor And The Church

Temple Baptist Church - 8-30-2017
1 Peter 5:1-4


A.  As Peter begins this last portion of his epistle to the Jewish believers, he instructs the elders or pastors of the local churches.

B.  First, we see the importance and establishment of the local church. Verse 2 says, “Feed the flock of God which is among you.”

1.  The word “flock” speaks of gathering.  God has always intended for His sheep to assemble.

2.  The phrase “which is among you” tells me that this flock is one of many and is local to your home.  I know that in some areas you cannot find a good, Bible believing church to attend and must drive great distances to find one, but I am always suspicious of those who pass many good churches to come to yours because “it is the only one that does not compromise.”  I am against compromise and will not attend a liberal church, but many times, it is the problem of the traveler and not the churches.

3.  In Hebrews 10, Paul exhorted these dispersed Jewish believers to be faith to their local church.

C.  Pastors are God called men who are giving the responsibility of caring for the local church.  When our Lord resurrected, He gave gifts to the local church to serve in His absence.

a.  He gave the gift of the Evangelist.  This is the missionary.  The word “evangelist” means to bring good news or glad tidings.  He is to preach the gospel to every creature.  These missionaries are sent out of local churches (Acts 13) and are responsible to their sending church.

b.  He gave the gift of the Pastor-Teacher.  These are God called men (not women) who are biblically qualified to oversee the local church.  These men are also qualified to teach or feed the local church. 

D.  The pastor is God’s under shepherd who comforts and cares for His sheep. 

Ephesians 4:12-14  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;

E.  The pastor is not a dictator!  It is God’s house, God’s flock and God’s sheep, not the pastor’s. 

F.  Now let us look at the work of the pastor.

1.  He is to feed the flock.

a.  Study.  This takes hard, diligent work – 2 Timothy 2:15  Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

b.  Approved unto God.  Preaching what God wants preached - Acts 20:26-27 Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men.  For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.

Galatians 1:10 For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.

1 Thessalonians 2:4 But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts.

c.  Not ashamed of what he believes.  2 Corinthians 3:5-6 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God; 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.

d.  Rightly dividing the word of truth.  Isaiah 28:10, 13  For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little  …  (13)  But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.

2.  He is to take the oversight of the flock.

a.  He is to willingly watch. 

1)  Not by constraint.  Though he is a God called man, pastoring a local church should be the love of his life.

2)  Not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind.  Though he lives by the gospel, money should not be his purpose.

b.  He is to diligently watch. 

1) Watch for false prophets - Acts 20:29-31 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.  Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.  Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.

2) Watch for false doctrine - 1 Timothy 4:13 Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.

1 Timothy 4:16 Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.

3.  He is to be an example to the flock - 1 Timothy 4:12 Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.

a.  In word – his message - 2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

b.  In conversation – his life - 2 Corinthians 6:3-4 Giving no offence in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed:  But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses,

c.  In charity – his love - 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.  In spirit – his fervency - Romans 12:11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord;

e.  In faith – his confidence - Hebrews 13:7  Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.

f.  In purity – his holiness - 1 Thessalonians 2:10  Ye are witnesses, and God also, how holily and justly and unblameably we behaved ourselves among you that believe:

Sunday, August 27, 2017

John The Baptist Walked With God In Expectancy

Temple Baptist Church - 8-27-2017
Luke 1:39-45


A.  This morning, I want to look in the New Testament at the last of the Old Testament prophets, John the Baptist.  First, let me set the background for the message.

B.  For 4,000 years, since the first Messianic Promise in Genesis 3:15 until the birth of Christ, the world waited for the promised “Seed of the Woman.” 

C.  For 400 years between Malachi’s prophecy and the beginning of the New Testament, God spoke not one word!  These have been called the “400 Silent years.” 

1.  As the Old Testament prophecy came to an end, hope declined and religion took its place.   Now they had both the temple and synagogues. 

2.  They had priests as well as Pharisees and Sadducees.  Israel went from the purity of an inward righteousness to the impurity of an outward righteousness. 

D.  At the time of our Lord’s birth, Israel and the world sat in spiritual darkness and bondage to Rome.  Few looked for the long-promised Messiah and his birth was shrouded in obscurity.

Matthew 4:16  The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.

E.  In fulfillment Isaiah 40:3, Zacharias and Elisabeth begat a son whom God named John. 

Matthew 3:3  For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.

F.  John the Baptist was a second cousin to our Lord Jesus Christ and six months older.  John and the Lord Jesus grew up together.  He grew up with the Lord and knew not that it was Him that was promised.

G.  There are many similarities between the first and second comings of our Lord.  There are also many similarities between the forerunner, John the Baptist, and the church.

1.  John Was Great Because He Was A Chosen Man - John 1:6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. (To be commissioned for a special task or mission.  We are a chosen generation.)

2.  John Was Great Because He Was A Godly Man - Luke 1:15 For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb. (John lived a clean life for the Lord.  We are to live a clean life for the Lord.)

3.  John Was Great Because He Was A Burning Man - John 5:35 He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light. (Before John could shine for God, first, he had to burn for God. He was willing to put all his energy into the work of God.  We are to shine for God as the light of the world.)

4.  John Was Great Because He Was A Preaching Man - Matthew 3:1-2 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,  And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. (John preached the way of salvation and the coming of the Messiah.  We preach the way of salvation and the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.)

5.  John Was Great Because He Was A Humble Man - John 3:30 He must increase, but I must decrease.  (John knew that he was not there to place himself on a pedestal but to glorify and point people to Christ.  We that are saved are to glorify Christ and point sinners to Him.)

6.  John Was Great Because He Was Just A Man - Luke 7:19  And John calling unto him two of his disciples sent them to Jesus, saying, Art thou he that should come? or look we for another?

1.  As John the Baptist walked with God in expectancy, he was “the voice of one.”

a.  Not “a” voice but “the” voice.  There were many voices of religion in John’s day but only one voice of salvation.  Thus, it is with our day. 

b.  Many religions and denominations clamor for the attention of the world, causing much spiritual confusion.  Their “voice” is always the Bible plus or minus something.  These make the Bible adapt to their doctrines instead of adapting their doctrines to the Bible.  God has always had one voice and one way of righteousness, God’s Word.

c.  Today’s religion attacks the Word of God by reducing it to a manmade version instead of a God made Bible!

2.  As John the Baptist walked with God in expectancy, he cried aloud in a world that was a spiritual “wilderness.”

a.  Crying means to proclaim loudly.  John the Baptist was a prophet and a preacher.  Until the day of our Lord’s public appearance, John continue to be the voice of righteousness crying in the spiritual wilderness of this world.

b.  We who are expecting the soon return of our Lord are to be crying aloud in the sinful wilderness that we live in.  How shall they hear without a preacher and that preacher is you; that preacher is me.

c.  As in Noah’s day, they may not listen but they will know who we are and what we preach.

3.  As John the Baptist walked with God in expectancy, he “prepared the way of the Lord.”

a.  John the Baptist was the plowman.  He prepared the ground for the seed to be planted.  That preparation is repentance of sin.  First, it takes a recognition of what sin is and a godly sorrow for that sin.

b.  John the Baptist was the sower as he prophesied of the Lord’s coming and point the people to “the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.”

c. We who expect the Lord to come need to continue to preach and stand against sinfulness, preach and teach repentance, and point the world to Christ.  We must decrease while our Lord Jesus Christ increases.

Conclusion:  We are to occupy until He comes.  We look for Him expectantly as His coming is imminent. 

Titus 2:11-14  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;  (13)  Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;  (14)  Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Spiritual Effects of Suffering

Temple Baptist Church - 8-23-2017
1 Peter 4:1-2


A.  As Peter writes to the “strangers scattered,” the dispersed Jews—he spends much of this first epistle showing them how to get along in this world and with each other.  The reason being, outside and inside of the body of Christ, you will suffer if you try to live a godly, separated life for Christ.

1.  The Fact of Suffering. vs 1, 12  Suffering is a way of live in this old sinful world.  It rains on the just and the unjust.  But, in our text, Peter is looking at suffering for well doing.  God’s children have and always will pay the consequences for living godly in an ungodly world.

2 Timothy 3:12  Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution

a)  The Example – “Christ hath suffered”

b)  The Exhortation – “arm yourselves”

c)  The Encouragement – “likewise with the same mind”

2.  The Fellowship of Suffering.

John 15:18-19  If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.  (19)  If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

a)  We Share Christ’s Sufferings – vs 1, 13

b)  We Share Fellow Believers’ Suffering – vs 16-17

3.  The Failure of Suffering.

a)  To Realize That God Has Something For Us In Suffering – 1 Peter 1:7  That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

b)  To Realize That God Controls Our Suffering – He Will Never Place More On Us Than We Can Bear

B.  The Preparation of Suffering.  “arm yourselves”

            1.  The Realization - vs 12; 1 Pet 1:7  Suffering Is A Part of Life.

            2.  The Resolve of Suffering – vs 1  “arm yourselves likewise with the same mind”

(a)  The Resolve To Continue To Suffer - James 5:10-11  Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience.  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.

(b)  The Resolve To ContinueTo Serve – vs 19 - Joshua 24:15 - And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

            3.  The Repose of Suffering - vs 19 – Trust in the Lord at all times.

C.  The Period In Suffering.

1.  1 Peter 1:6  Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations.

            2.  Gives encouragement and hope.

D.  The Results of Suffering.

            1.  Vs 1 – Suffering Will Cause You To Cease From Sin.

James 5:14-16  Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:  And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.  Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
            2.  Vs 2 - Suffering Will Cause You To Become Submissive To God’s Will.

Hebrews 5:6-9  As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.  Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;  Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;  And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;

            3.  Vs 3-6 - Suffering Will Cause You To Become Separate From The World.

1 Peter 4:1-2  Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;  That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.

Luke 6:22  Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake.

            4.  Vs 7 - Suffering Will Cause You To Spend More Time In Prayer.

2 Corinthians 12:7-8  And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.  For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.

2 Samuel 12:15-20  And Nathan departed unto his house. And the LORD struck the child that Uriah’s wife bare unto David, and it was very sick.  David therefore besought God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night upon the earth.  And the elders of his house arose, and went to him, to raise him up from the earth: but he would not, neither did he eat bread with them.  And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died. And the servants of David feared to tell him that the child was dead: for they said, Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spake unto him, and he would not hearken unto our voice: how will he then vex himself, if we tell him that the child is dead?  But when David saw that his servants whispered, David perceived that the child was dead: therefore David said unto his servants, Is the child dead? And they said, He is dead.  Then David arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed [himself], and changed his apparel, and came into the house of the LORD, and worshipped: then he came to his own house; and when he required, they set bread before him, and he did eat.

            5.  Vs 8-9 - Suffering Will Cause You To Draw Closer To The Brethren.

1 Corinthians 12:26  And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.

Romans 12:15  Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.
            6.  Vs 10-11 - Suffering Will Cause You To Be Able To Minister To Others.

2 Corinthians 1:4-6  Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.  For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.  And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation.

            7.  Vs 12-13 - Suffering Will Cause You To Rejoice In Tribulation.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10  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.  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.

Philippians 4:4  Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.

            8.  Vs 14-16 - Suffering Will Cause You To Worship.

2 Samuel 12:20  Then David arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed [himself], and changed his apparel, and came into the house of the LORD, and worshipped: then he came to his own house; and when he required, they set bread before him, and he did eat.

Job 1:20-22  Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped,  And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.  In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.

            9.  Vs 17-19 - Suffering Will Cause You To Commit Your Life To The Lord.

1 Peter 2:23  Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:

1 Peter 4:19  Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.