Sunday, February 28, 2021

The Office of a Deacon

 Temple Baptist Church - 2-28-2021

Philippians 1:1;1 Timothy 3:8-13


Introduction:  I want my eldest deacon and friend Bro. Harold Smith to come sit with these three men who are to be ordained this morning.


A.  This morning, we will give our time over to the ordination of three men as deacons of Temple Baptist Church.


Bro. Robert A. H********* III

Bro. Chris H*****

Bro. Bret Clinton G***** II


B.  There are two “offices” found in the local church: The Office of the Bishop and the Office of the Deacon.  Both offices are found mentioned in 1 Timothy, chapter 3.


C.  I chose my text for this morning because both the Bishop and the Deacons are first mentioned here.  Paul, while writing to the Church at Philippi, mentioned three types of members of that church.  I believe that the order is important:


1.  First - “To all the saints in Christ” – every member of the local church is equally important to the Lord and to the fellowship and welfare of the body.  God is no respecter of persons and neither should we be such.  There would be no local church without a corporate body of believers.  The local church is ALL about the welfare of the saints.  What we are doing this morning is for the benefit of all! 


2.  Second - The deacons of the Church at Philippi were placed on an equal plane with the bishops in this verse. 


a)  The reason being that both offices are for ministering to and serving the saints of God!  Many pastors become dictators who feel that they are superior and need to be served.  Also, there are many instances of deacons who feel that they are spiritually superior to the people of the churches and also feel that they are in authority instead of servants.


b)  Deacons are only mentioned in the two passages of Scripture that I read this morning.  Though placed on an equal plane in Philippians and given their qualifications in 1 Timothy, deacons are no longer mentioned throughout the Bible because they are servants.


Romans 12:3-5  For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.  (4)  For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:  (5)  So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.


D.  There is little said concerning either the deacons or their work within the body of the local church. 


1.  Many people apply Acts, chapter 6, to the election and work of the deacons but they are not called such by the Scriptures. 


2.  Also some of them (Phillip and Stephen especially) were evangelists and preached elsewhere (Samaria and Gaza are specifically mentioned) instead of serving in the church at Jerusalem.  


3.  If these men were elected to the Office of a Deacon, I believe that they would have served in that capacity instead of preaching elsewhere.  I also believe that the Bible would have been consistent and called them deacons.


E.  Our word “deacon” comes from the word “diakonos” which has several meanings:


1.  To attend

2.  To wait upon

3.  To minister

4.  To serve


F.  The word “diakonos” is normally translated “servant.”  In its general use, all of us are servants.  In


Galatians 5:13  For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.


G.  Most of the time, the word “diakonos” is translated as “servant,” which is appropriate because we are all called to serve.


1.  In Romans, chapter 16, Phebe is called a servant of the church in Cenchrea.  The word “servant” in verse 1.  While the underlying Greek word is “diakonos,” your King James Bible is rightly translated.  She is called a servant instead of a deacon as she was neither qualified for nor elected to the Office of a Deacon.


Romans 16:1-2  I commend unto you Phebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea:  (2)  That ye receive her in the Lord, as becometh saints, and that ye assist her in whatsoever business she hath need of you: for she hath been a succourer of many, and of myself also.


2.  The word “deacon” is used 5 times in Your King James Bible.  Each of the 5 times, the word “diakonos” is transliterated as “deacon,” with each instance referring of the Office of the Deacon.  You can trust your King James Bible as it is verbally, plenarily, as well as doctrinally correct.  Deacons play an important part in the work and welfare of the local church.


H.  The qualifications of the deacon:  1 Timothy 3:8-13


1.  Verse 8 – Their Integrity

2.  Verse 9 – Their Maturity

3.  Verse 10 – Their Proving

4.  Verse 11 – Their Wives

5.  Verse 12 – Their Ruling

6.  Verse 13 – Their Reward


J.  The work of the deacon:


1.  Deacons are to be servants, not masters – nowhere in the Bible do we find deacons having authority in the local church.  In many churches, Deacon Boards and Trustee Boards oversee the local churches and problems abound.  The Bible first and then the pastor second is to have the authority.


2.  Deacons are to be a blessing to the Local Church, not a burden.  Being a deacon is not a thing of pride but one of humility, serving the pastor and local church in love.  This takes a special grace because their existence is that of service to others.


3.  Deacons are to be able to lead as well as to follower.  Though servants, because of their work they are conspicuous.  The time may come when this pastor is no longer to lead the church.  These are men who can lead the church in search of a new pastor while holding the church together in the absence of one.


4.  Deacons are to be faithful to their local church as well as to the Office of a Deacon that they hold.  Paul said that the Lord counted him faithful putting him into the ministry.  Thus it is with a deacon.  He cannot be a servant to others if he is not a faithful man.


Conclusion:  I hold these three Deacons in high esteem and believe that they will discharge their duties with love and integrity in the days to come.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Our Altar Of Worship: Calvary

Temple Baptist Church - 2-24-2021

Hebrews 13:10-15




A.  Under the Old Covenant, animals suffered within the gate because there was no reproach.  The Jews gladly sacrificed their Atonement because they felt right with God without personally suffering for it.  They were not required to go outside the gate. 


B.  Under the New Covenant, Christ Jesus suffered outside the gate because He was a reproach to the people of Israel.  They neither accepted His sacrifice in their place, nor did they accept those who went without the gate, bearing His reproach.


C.  Paul, when ending his letter to the Hebrews, made mention of an altar.  The Jewish believers were well acquainted with the concept of an altar as altars were used from Abraham until that present day.


1.  Verse 10.  An Altar Is A Place Of Privilege.  A right granted by the grace of God.  We do not have any right outside of Calvary.


Hebrews 13:10  We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle.


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


2.  Verse 12.  An Altar Is A Place Of Protection.  Christ is our Sanctity, and we are sanctified in Him.  A place of protection.


Hebrews 13:12  Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.


Psalms 91:1-2  He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.  (2)  I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.


3.  Verse 12.  An Altar Is A Place Of Propitiation.  Jesus Christ bore our sin and our reproach.


Hebrews 13:12  Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.


1 John 2:2  And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.



4.  Verse 12 – “He suffered” – An Altar Is A Place Of Suffering.  A place of the smell of blood and death!


Hebrews 13:12  Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.


Isaiah 53:3-4  He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.  (4)  Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.


1 Peter 5:10  But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.


5.  Verse 12.  An Altar Is A Place Of Separation.  Christ died without the camp.  He was despised and rejected by the world.


Hebrews 13:12  Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.


6.  Verse 13.  An Altar Is A Place Of Seeking.  Calvary was a fixed place.  Our Lord said, “Come unto me!”  Our Lord said to the Pharisees, “And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.


Hebrews 13:13  Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach.


7.  Verse 13.  An Altar Is A Place Of Identification.  The child of God goes without the gate bearing His reproach.   Our Altar is a place of identification!  When we go out, we stand out because we are out!


Hebrews 13:13  Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach.


Hebrews 11:25-26  Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;  (26)  Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.


1 Peter 4:14  If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.


D.  Paul was speaking of a different altar than the one that they were well acquainted with.  He was speaking of the sacrifice of Christ on the cross at Calvary.  vs.  10-12.


1.  The cross of Christ was a willing sacrifice.  It was an act of love.

2.  The cross of Christ was an awful sacrifice.  It was terrible in its price.


3.  The cross of Christ was a beneficial sacrifice.  It opened Heaven for those who believe.


E.  Paul declared that those who continued to serve the tabernacle (a reference to the Old Testament priesthood) had no right to the altar at Calvary.  Jesus Christ fulfilled the law (moral, civil, and ceremonial) and the continual sacrifices were a rejection of His sacrifice.


F.  Paul then sets forth the obligation of the Christian.  Vs. 13-16


1.  Let us go forth without the camp.  Losing our identity with the world.


2.  Bearing His reproach.  Identifying with our Lord Jesus Christ.


3.  Seeking a city to come.  Keeping our eyes on eternal things. 


4.  Offer praise continually.  This is open praise or the fruit of our lips.


5.  Let us do good and communicate.  To live right and to witness of God’s grace.


G.  I want to key on the phrase “let us offer the sacrifice of praises to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.”  A liturgical deadness has entered our churches.  Worship services (I use that term loosely) have become more ritualistic.  There certainly is more form than fire.  Our Lord’s commentary on the church of Sardis was that they had a name that they were alive and yet were dead.


H.  The cause of this deadness and lack of praise is obvious.


1.  There is the lukewarmness of Laodicea.


2.  There is the materialistic society of our day.


3.  There is the lack of persecution that keeps the church pure and hot.


4.  There is the bombardment of worldly religion and a lack of godly, straight, sin killing preaching.


5.  There is the growing carnality of God’s people.


6.  There is the lack of prayer and Bible study that develop closeness to God.


J.  The list could go on but this is not my subject.  I want to look at praise for a few minutes.  I will only use a few verses for time’s sake.


1.  When Should We Praise The Lord?


a.  All the day long - Psalms 34:1  I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.


Hebrews 13:15  By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.


Psalms 35:28  And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.


Psalms 113:3  From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD’S name is to be praised.


Psalms 119:164  Seven times a day do I praise thee because of thy righteous judgments.


b.  Praise Him continually - Psalms 52:9  I will praise thee for ever, because thou hast done it: and I will wait on thy name; for it is good before thy saints.  (The praise of some is sporadic at best and those who run on emotions normally run out.  We are not to praise God on emotions alone, but praise Him in both good and bad times.)


Psalms 104:33  I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.


c.  Before church ever begins - Psalms 100:4  Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.


2.  How Should We Praise The Lord?


a.  Through Singing - Judges 5:3  Hear, O ye kings; give ear, O ye princes; I, even I, will sing unto the LORD; I will sing praise to the LORD God of Israel.  (When God’s people really “get into” the singing, the worship service is greatly enhanced.)


b.  Through remembrance and public thanksgiving - 1 Chronicles 16:4  And he appointed certain of the Levites to minister before the ark of the LORD, and to record, and to thank and praise the LORD God of Israel.  (How sweet the service when God’s people begin to stand, weep, and praise His name in testimony.)


Psalms 66:8  O bless our God, ye people, and make the voice of his praise to be heard.


Psalms 67:3  Let the people praise thee, O God; let all the people praise thee.  (Praise is to b e done by all.)


c.  With loudness, not just quietness - Psalms 98:4  Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.


d.  Through musical instruments - 1 Chronicles 23:5  Moreover four thousand were porters; and four thousand praised the LORD with the instruments which I made, said David, to praise therewith


e.  With our whole heart - Psalms 9:1  I will praise thee, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.


f.  Increasingly instead of decreasingly - Psalms 71:14  But I will hope continually, and will yet praise thee more and more.


3.  Where Should We Praise The Lord?


a.  Praise Him in your private devotions - 1 Chronicles 23:30  And to stand every morning to thank and praise the LORD, and likewise at even.


b.  Praise Him in the Church - Psalms 22:22  I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.


Psalms 22:25  My praise shall be of thee in the great congregation: I will pay my vows before them that fear him.


Psalms 27:6  And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD.


Psalms 42:4  When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me: for I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday.


c.  Praise Him in public - 2 Samuel 22:50  Therefore I will give thanks unto thee, O LORD, among the heathen, and I will sing praises unto thy name.


Psalms 40:3  And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.


4.  Why Should We Praise The Lord?


a.  Because of the glories and excellencies of His person - Exodus 15:11  Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?


2 Samuel 22:4  I will call on the LORD, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.


1 Chronicles 16:25  For great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised: he also is to be feared above all gods.


b.  Because of the blessings received from him, and through him, both temporal and spiritual - Deuteronomy 10:21  He is thy praise, and he is thy God, that hath done for thee these great and terrible things, which thine eyes have seen.


c.  Because of the grace, and all the blessings of it now communicated to us - 1 Chronicles 29:13  Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name.


d.  Because He loves you! - Psalms 63:3  Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee.


e.  Because it fills the house of God with His glory - 2 Chronicles 5:13  It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of musick, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the LORD.


f.  Because He has given us His Word - Psalms 56:4  In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.


Psalms 138:2  I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.


g.  Because our children need to see it! - Psalms 78:4  We will not hide them from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done.


Psalms 79:13  So we thy people and sheep of thy pasture will give thee thanks for ever: we will shew forth thy praise to all generations.


Psalms 145:4  One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts.


h.  BECAUSE IT IS GOOD, GOOD, GOOD! - Psalms 135:3  Praise the LORD; for the LORD is good: sing praises unto his name; for it is pleasant.


Psalms 150:1-6  Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary: praise him in the firmament of his power.  Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness.  Praise him with the sound of the trumpet: praise him with the psaltery and harp.  Praise him with the timbrel and dance: praise him with stringed instruments and organs.  Praise him upon the loud cymbals: praise him upon the high sounding cymbals.  Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD. Praise ye the LORD.

Sunday, February 21, 2021

The Landmark Of Sanctification

 Temple Baptist Church - 2-21-2021

1 Peter 1:13-16




1 Peter 1:13-16  Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;  (14)  As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:  (15)  But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;  (16)  Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.


A.  There is another “landmark” of the faith that I want to deal with this morning.  We have dealt with the landmarks of the Sovereignty, Scripture, Sanctuary, and Salvation but one of the most important and neglected of all doctrines is that of biblical Sanctification. 


B.  Sanctification defined:  the action of making or declaring something holy.


Leviticus 20:7-8  Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.  (8)  And ye shall keep my statutes, and do them: I am the LORD which sanctify you.


C.  In our text, I want to look at the wording as it is important to have a proper understanding of what the Holy Ghost is referring to:


1.  The Holy Ghost uses the word “Wherefore” to tie these verses with the context.


a)  Verses 3-6 – Our Great Salvation

b)  Verses 7-9 – Our Great Tribulation

c)  Verses 10-12 – Our Great Exhortation

d)  Verses 13-16 – Our Great Obligation


2.  The Holy Ghost uses the words “gird up” – to tie up tightly with a belt.


3.  The Holy Ghost uses the words “the loins” – the hip or procreative part (having the power to produce or reproduce.


4.  The Holy Ghose uses the words “of your mind” – the “battlefield:” this is where the battle ensues.


Proverbs 23:7  For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he …


Romans 12:2  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.


D.  “It’s a battlefield, Brother, not a recreation room; it’s a fight and not a game.”  As God’s children, we have a right desire but live in a wicked flesh in a wicked world.  Sometimes we win a battle and sometimes we lose one. 


1.  This message needs to be a positive one, not a negative one.  The Holy Ghost also gives us a look into the inward man of the Apostle Paul.  I believe that he was one of the greatest Christians who ever lived and God gave him as our example.


Romans 7:14-25  For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.  (15)  For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.  (16)  If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.  (17)  Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  (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.  (19)  For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.  (20)  Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  (21)  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.  (22)  For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:  (23)  But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.  (24)  O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?  (25)  I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.


2.  I struggle with sin and failure; you struggle with sin and failure.  Though we fail at times, we need to realize that living for Christ is all that matters and everything that will last.


E.  There are three distinct areas of sanctification in the life of every believer:


1.  There is Positional Sanctification - 1 Corinthians 1:30  But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:  (Removal from the Penalty of Sin.  At the moment of salvation, the believer is set apart from the world positionally through Jesus Christ.  He is the believer’s sanctification.  We are baptized into Christ and remain secure!)


2.  There is Practical Sanctification - 1 Peter 1:15  But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation.  (Removed from the Power of Sin.  When we are saved, we remain just a sinner saved by the grace of God.  As we mature in the Lord and grow in our faith, we are being constantly changed by both the Spirit of God who indwells us and the Word of God that teaches and guides us.)


3.  There is Perpetual Sanctification - 1 Thessalonians 4:17  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  (Removed from the Presence of Sin.  We will be forever delivered from the presence of sin at either death or the rapture of the church.) 


F.  Positional and Perpetual Sanctification are things that God does for us while Practical Sanctification is something that we do for God!


G.  Holiness and sanctification are results of conforming our thinking to the Bible, not allowing the world to form it. 


John 17:17  Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.


H.  Positional and Permanent Sanctification are distinct works of the Lord as He becomes the propitiation for the sinner and ultimately comes to take him or her home.  Practical Sanctification is a work of the saint!  It is the act of separating from the world and unto the Lord; therefore, it is a positive thing, not a negative one.


J.  There are three areas of Sanctification that I need to look at here that are Practical and we are all responsible for.


K.  There are three areas of Practical Sanctification that I want to briefly look at with each being contingent upon our obedience to the Bible.


1.  Personal Sanctification - 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.  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.  (Each of us has an obligation to be personally separated from the world and unto the Lord Jesus Christ.  We are special and we are different!  We are saved and we are His!)


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?  For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.


2.  Ecclesiastical Sanctification – This is without the Local Church.  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?  And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?  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.  Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,  And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.  (Our church is not to be yoked in any manner with other churches that are liberal or apostate.)


3.  Doctrinal Sanctification – This is within the Local Church.  Romans 16:17  Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.  (We are to remain doctrinally separated, maintaining doctrinal purity.)


Conclusion:  We are not our own for we have been bought with a terrible price.  Our responsibility is to be separated unto the Lord and from this present evil world.  In all that we do, we are to glorify God.  Biblical Sanctification is a positive thing, not a negative one.  We are not only separated from something, we are separated unto Someone: our Lord Jesus Christ.