“ARE YOU CHILDISH OR CHILDLIKE!”

1 Corinthians 13:8-13, verses 11 is the text.

In verses 1-3 is our motivation for love.

In verses 4-8 is the definition of love:  Action  and Attitude.

Love is a mark of maturity.

Three things we must understand to be mature.

THERE WILL BE CHANGES IN YOUR LIFE:

  1. In your character

Remember that God uses circumstances and people.

2. In your wisdom

Never change in these: In our MINISTRY, MISSION and MESSAGE.

Methods always change: As a preacher I define myself by my message not method.

YOU WON’T ALWAYS UNDERSTAND EVERYTHING.

  1. Be teachable

You don’t know it all.

2. Build your faith

God does not always answer prayer.

1 Corinthians 14:20, “Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men.”

When teaching adults Jesus always talked about child-like faith Lk.18:15-17.

In 1 Corinthians 13:11 Paul spoke of childish thinking.

In an article for “Good News” magazine, Duffy Robbins contrasts childish faith and childlike faith:

Childish faith

  • Good Christians don’t have pain and disappointments.
  • God wants to make us happy.
  • God always answers prayers.
  • Faith will help us to always understand what God is doing.
  • Good Christians are always strong.

Childlike faith

  • God uses our pain and disappointment to make us better Christians.
  • God wants to make us holy.
  • Sometimes He answers with “no” or “wait.”
  • Faith will help us to submit to God’s sovereignty even when we don’t have a clue about what God is doing.
  • Our strength is in admitting our weakness.

Here is the heart of the matter: Childish faith is self-centered and demanding. It expects God to shield us from all difficulties and to make life comfortable for us. In contrast, childlike faith focuses on God. It trusts Him to use even difficulties for our good and His glory.

What kind of faith is yours?

Childlike faith focuses on our heavenly Father, not on our fear.

  • LEARN THAT LOVE IS THE KEY VERSE 13.
  1. Love is the key to relationships.
  2. Love produces:
  3. Love for each other.

John 13:35, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

How to build love?

  1. Structure: Don’t be a big shot.
  2. Spirit: Keep going back to the cross.
  3. Stay in love with Jesus: Just like with your wife.

Poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browing:

“Love looks beyond the bound of time and space, Love takes eternity in its embrace.”

Love never dies

Love is never defeated

  1. Love is never disillusioned.
  2. Love is never disappointed.

That’s why there are so many divorces today.

This is the kind of love that holds two hearts together.

Christ never ceased loving.

You cannot do anything to keep Him from loving you.

No sin is beyond His love.

“ARE YOU A WISE OR FOOLISH MAN?”

REVIEW YESTERDAY’S DEVOTIONAL:
5. The Bible will set your heart on fire for soul winning.
Luke 19:10, “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
Read John 15:1-7.
We are sent to snatch souls out of hell.
We are sent to bear much fruit.
We are sent to make disciples.
WHY WIN SOULS?
God commands it:
Proverbs 11:30, “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winter souls is wise.”
Psalm 126:5-6, “They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.”
Matthew 28:18-20, “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
It brings joy.
John 15:11, “These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.”
It gives love for other people.
John 15:12, “This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.”
It brings answer to prayer.
John 15:7, “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.”
It glorifies the Father.
John 15:8, “Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.”
CONTINUED TOMORROW!

“ARE YOU A WISE OR A FOOLISH MAN?”

Luke 6:46-49
The hills of Palestine had very little vegetation on them. The winter rains would bring violent floods that swept away any building in its path. Sand would wash away quickly and buildings on the rock would stand.
1. The Bible gives wisdom: by the way, it is the only source of wisdom for us today.
James 1:5, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”
2. The Bible will set your soul on fire according to Psalm 119:11, “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.”
Notice:
3. The Bible will set your heart on fire for God and the things of God.
4. The Bible will set your heart on fire for the Word of God.
Why do so many Christians fail?
They don’t listen to God.
They say it is too hard.
They don’t anticipate problems.
They are too busy with minor unimportant things.
They are unobserving.
They are irresponsible.
They have no plan.
They are inconsistent.
They are near-sighted, not far-sighted.
5. The Bible will set your heart on fire for the need of prayer.
Pray several times a day and say, “Oh God help me.”
Pray things through.
Pray expectantly.
CONTINUED TOMORROW!

“ARE WE AWARE OF WHAT WE ARE LOSING? CONCLUSION!

Please read 2 Timothy 3:1-9 and Proverbs 1:1-7 if you can. 

There Is a Slide in Standards to Sensual Life Styles.

I don’t think we should be against everything, but I do believe we need decency, integrity, cleanliness, purity, etc. Don’t make everything you’re against a sin. For instance, if a man who chooses not to wear socks with his shoes, lacks in culture, but it is not a sin. We should not make things sins that pertain to only to standards, yet there ought to be some Bible guide lines in our standards:

  • There has been a slide in our clothing.

Too often, we see our ladies in worldly or revealing clothing. This has no place in the life of the Godly Christian.

  • There has been a slide in our conduct.

Carnality, inconsistency, rude language, harsh language, or just plain improper language.

  • There has been a slide in our Christ-like living.

This is the main problem. The pressure is to carry things a little too far or not far enough. It is normal for a young person to want to try some different things, but we need boundaries. Often, we let our guard down with our children, and soon, immorality is creeping in. I understand the male instincts, but you ought to stay at least 10,000 miles away from anything that would cause you to fall. The Bible says, “Abstain from every appearance of evil.” We need some rules, but they ought to be few and fair, and most important, we need to make them stick. Parents and teachers, don’t major on the minors, but major on the majors. I have known some preachers who are so busy preaching on long hair that they themselves fall into immorality. Let’s face it, the weakness of man is in all of us, which is why we must dress in proper clothing, exercise proper conduct, and practice Christ-like living.

We must be so close to Jesus that we are not thinking of our weaknesses, but of His strength. To live with honor and dignity is to love Jesus Christ, to give our lives whole-heartedly to Him, and to be aware of what we are losing.

“ARE WE AWARE OF WHAT WE ARE LOSING?” PART 2

2 Timothy 3:1-9 and Proverbs 1:1-7 

Yesterday we started discussing some things we are losing in Christianity in this new century. To Review:

The Loss of Bible Acceptance and Its Continued Decline.

Here’s the slide: from slavery to freedom, to prosperity, to privilege, to permissiveness, to over-indulgence, and back to slavery. Why?

  1. Because of the loss of Bible salvation – 2 Timothy 3:5.
  2. Because of the loss of Bible separation – 2 Timothy 3:2,4
  3. Because of the loss of Bible solutions – 2 Timothy 3:7.

The Loss of Bible Authority (Even in the Christian Community).

Today, we have entirely new movement of entertainment, freedom that to do their own thing. The Charismatics want an experience, the Mormons want your family, and the Jehovah’s Witnesses want your soul. The Bible has lost favor in our community. Now, the emerging church wants to get along with everybody and everything.

We have moved from Bible Christianity to experience. 

But the Psalmist said, Thy word have I hid in mine heart,” not “my experience.”

  • The Loss of Bible Characters – as Role Models
  • The Loss of Bible Conviction. We don’t need more laws; we just need to keep the laws we already have – The Word of God.
  • The Loss of Bible Confrontation. In other words, don’t fear man.

TO BE CONCLUDED TOMORROW!

ARE WE AWARE OF WHAT WE ARE LOSING?

2 Timothy 3:1-9 and Proverbs 1:1-7.

It occurred to me that life can pass us by, and we don’t even realize it. We are definitely losing some things in Christianity in this new century: 

The Loss of Bible Acceptance and Its Continued Decline.

The Bible used to be the centerpiece of almost every family. Families used to believe “the family that prays together, stays together.” In fact, families usually stayed within a radius of 25 miles. We used to learn from father and mother and aunt and uncle. Our children used to have grandmas and grandpas to love them and help to teach them, train them and care for them. It used to be the norm to obey parents. Now it is almost the other way around. For years, the Bible was the best seller, and as far as I know even today, it is number one, but let’s face it, it is mainly because Christians are buying them and giving them to others. 

Here is what happened. American culture went from agricultural-industrial to a high-tech computer age, and some would add that now we are in a distribution age, not to mention climate control age, change of gender age, etc.

Some Christians, and Christian thought, are still back in the agricultural age. Most young people know nothing of our Christian Bible culture. In fact, do you understand Proverbs 1:1-7? Christian thought and principles do not dominate the average Christian’s life. Too often, it is money, television, success, social programs, etc. Most other countries have kept their culture. Until WW II, a politician was expected to be connected to some form of religious worship and associated himself publicly with the local pastor.

Who remembers that stores used to be closed on Sunday? Now, Christians go to the mall on Sunday afternoons. Please don’t misunderstand me; I think there ought to be a balance. We should not go back to the horse and buggy days, but certainly, all would agree we ought to go back to right and wrong, obedience to the law, etc. When we used to disagree, whatever the Bible said was the final authority. It was absolute.

Here’s the slide: from slavery to freedom, to prosperity, to privilege, to permissiveness, to over-indulgence, and back to slavery. Why?

  • Because of the loss of Bible salvation – 2 Timothy 3:5.
  • Because of the loss of Bible separation – 2 Timothy 3:2,4
  • Because of the loss of Bible solutions – 2 Timothy 3:7.

TO BE CONTINUED TOMORROW!

“ANSWERS FOR YOUR MARRIAGE” CONCLUSION! For July 31 and August 1st

  • LOVE IS A GIVING OF SELF
  • It involves attention & care of the other person.
  • It involves attention & care of the other person.
  • It involves an emotional desire to assume responsibility of the partner.
  • It involves attention & care of the other person.
  • It involves an emotional desire to assume responsibility of the partner.
  • It demands the highest respect of the identity of the partner.
  • It involves attention & care of the other person.
  • It involves an emotional desire to assume responsibility of the partner.
  • Demands the highest respect of the identity of the partner.
  • It involves a thorough knowledge of the partner.
  • It involves being the other person centered, not self-centered.
  • Love expects nothing in return.
  • THE REAL TEST OF LOVE IS TIME! 
  • Physical love is a small part of the total relationship in love, but with infatuation it is the greatest part.

LOVE IS LEADERSHIP-LEADING FOLLOWERS TO FOLLOW!

  • If a woman wants leadership in the home she must lead the rest of the family to follow the leader – the husband
  • A man makes himself a man by leading – a woman by following
  • WOMEN DO NOT FEAR SUBMISSION, BUT SUPPRESSION
  • MEN NEED TO EXERCISE LEADERSHIP ON WIVES WITH GENTLENESS
  • NO ONE WANTS TO CARRY THE BALL IN MARRIAGE ANY MORE
  • IN SUBMISSION A WIFE VOLUNTEERS TO FOLLOW.
  • IT IS AN EXERCISE OF CHOICE AND FREE WILL
  • ON HER PART IT REQUIRES MORE CHARACTER THAN REBELLION
  • SUBMISSION IS LEARNED –
  • BY EXAMPLE IS ALWAYS BEST
  • REBELLION COMES NATURALLY
  • CHILDREN LEARN SUBMISSION BY WATCHING IT IN OPERATION
  • IN MARRIAGE A MAN AND WOMAN UNITE AS TWO HANDS CLASPING
  • AND LOVE IS THE KEY TO IT ALL.

My prayer is that these lessons were worthy of study and practice and of course a blessing;