Sunday, December 29, 2019

What I Have Written I Have Written

Temple Baptist Church - 12-29-2019
John 19:19-22; Philippians 13:12-14


A.  Soon, 2019 will be written in the History Book! 

1.  2019 will be another year gone, never to be again.  “What I Have Written I have written.”  The key word “I” is found twice in the phrase.  It is “I” that have written, not what someone said that I have written or have written about me.  The pages of 2019 will be filled and the year closed. 

2.  2020 is a New Year.  2020 is a New Year.  Its pages are clean, its “ink pen” is filled and ready for us to begin writing.  Today, I want to deal with both aspects: The Old Year and The New Year.

B.  When Pilate wrote a title and put it on the cross, “JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS,” he had it written in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin. 

1.  It was publicly written. Once written, there was no denial of what he wrote.

2.  It was universally written.  Hebrew – the language of the Jew; Greek – the language of the Jewish proselyte.  Latin – highly educated.  Once written, it was there for all to see and read.

3.  It was un-reversibly written.  Once written, removing it or changing it would not negate what he said or what he meant.

C.  Our lives for 2019 will soon be just a superscription to be seen and read of men!  The Apostle Paul said,

Philippians 3:12-14  Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.  (13)  Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,  (14)  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

Those who do not study history are certain to repeat it.

D.  “Facing The Uncertain With Certainty” should be the theme of the New Year. 

1.  I did not get everything that I wanted last year and probably will not get all that I want this year.  Brother Harold always askes me the question, “Is everything going your way?”  My answer is always the same: “No!  But it doesn’t have to go my way.” 

2.  I did not do everything right last year!  Paul puts this in perspective for us.  “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.  (13)  Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended.”

3.  We learn from our disappointments, our failures, and our successes.  But I will face this new year with the hope of God in my heart and my eyes upon Him. 

E.  The past can do one of two things:  it can either haunt you or it can help you!  Which one applies to you is your choice. We need to make right choices this coming year in order to maintain both our Christian testimony and influence.

F.  This morning, we need to put last year in its proper perspective.  That perspective is this:  last year is history and we cannot change it.  I want to give you two things that will help you to face the New Year in a right way.  I will try to keep this as simple as possible.

1.  Put The Past In The Past! 

2.  Put The Future In The Present!

PUT THE PAST IN THE PAST!  Forget those things that you cannot change!  LEARN FROM THEM!

1. Past failures not to be forgotten and not to be repeated.  You blew it at times.  I blew it at times.  I was not always a good Christian this past year.  May the Lord help me to be a better Christian in 2020.

Psalms 51:7-13  Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 8  Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. 9  Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. 10  Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. 11  Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. 12  Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. 13  Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.

2. Past victories not to be forgotten but placed in a proper perspective.  There were times when you were a good Christian last year.  You grew in the Lord and were blessed and rewarded for it. 

3. Forget your disappointments!  NO ONE gets everything that they want!  There were times when the enemy got the upper hand.  There were times when you had to do without some things.  There were times when you did not understand and probably still do not understand.  God never said to understand; He said to trust.

4.  Forget your hurts and forgive those who hurt you.  Hurt always turns to anger and anger to bitterness if not dealt with properly.  Forgiveness of our enemies is as much for our sake as it is for their sake.

Hebrews 12:15  Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;

Matthew 6:12  And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

Put the Future In The Present!  Reflect upon those things that will not change!

1. God was good to us this past year!  He will be good to us in the coming year.

Psalms 23:6  Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

Lamentations 3:22-23  It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. 23  They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

2. God’s grace was sufficient this past year!  His grace will be sufficient in the coming year.

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.

1 Peter 4:10  As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

2 Corinthians 4:15  For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.

3. God’s strength was made perfect in our weakness last year!  His strength will be there in the coming year.

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

Ephesians 6:10  Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

4. God’s presence was with us last year!  He will be there this next year.

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. 

Isaiah 49:15  Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.

5. God’s promises were made sure to us when we needed them last year!  We can rely upon them in the coming year.

2 Corinthians 1:20  For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us. 

6. Last year is history and next year will be history soon!  “And it came to pass!”
Next year is just “future history.” 

Psalms 90:9  For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told.

Happy New Year!  Face the New Year with hope and trust instead of doubt and fear.  The Lord will be the same tomorrow as He was yesterday and today!

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