“MANY THANKSGIVING UNTO GOD” CONCLUSION!

Mary and I want to wish all our family and friends a very HAPPY THANKSGIVING. We have so much to thank God for and for our wonderful country.
Please read 2 Corinthians 9:6-15.
Praising God for His blessing is the true sacrifice of godly Christians. One of the purposes of giving a blood sacrifice of an innocent animal was that God took that which was innocent to sacrifice for the guilty. Who in the world would not rejoice in that?
Spurgeon wrote, “See the order here: the soul is sore sick, it begins to pray; the Lord sends His word, the soul is healed; praise is presented, and God is glorified. May this become a matter of experience with each one of us.”
God has commanded the Christian to acknowledge His grace of giving with thanksgiving, which in turn will make serving God a little sweeter, and as we declare His works with rejoicing, we will honor God, feel good about ourselves, help others, and further the cause of Christ in the process.
All these blessings are also a manifestation of faith and trust in God and His provision – not to mention the fact that it will produce abundant thanksgiving unto God by both the giver and receiver.
2 Corinthians 8:14, “But by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality.”
This is really an amazing principle: as we supply the needs of others, they in turn should supply us in our time of need. God is saying that those Jews who once had need of nothing due to their abundance should now be dependent upon others who are now blessed with abundance.
This almost sounds like modern day communism – far from it. Since when has communism ever really been concerned about the needs of others.
I believe Thanksgiving is no more than giving our honor and praise to God for His supply, and in turn we help others due to our abundance.
God is so good, not only to hear our prayers, but also to answer them; however, it is required of us to be thankful, because the Bible commands, “In every thing give thanks,”
Psalm 95:2, “Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving.” Or, let us come before His face with confession, offerings and thanksgivings.
The proper order is to acknowledge that we have sinned, confess our sin and unworthiness of His blessing, and praise Him for what he has already done.
In Psalm 100:4, we are commanded to “enter his gates with thanksgiving;” in Psalm 147:7, we are commanded to “sing unto the Lord with thanksgiving,” and in Amos 4:5, we are commanded to offer a “sacrifice of thanksgiving.”
We need to make certain that we truly become conscious of giving many thanksgivings unto the Lord over this Thanksgiving Season.

“MANY THANKSGIVING UNTO GOD!”

2 Corinthians 9:6-15.
 
Verse 12, “For the administration of this service not only supplieth the want of the saints, but is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God.”
 
This message is not so much on giving as it is on thanksgiving. The subject at hand is Biblical giving; however, in this verse God not only gives the blessing of giving, but even more importantly, the many thanksgivings we are giving unto God as a result of giving. I believe most Christians would agree with the following results of our giving,
 
• When we give of our tithes to the Lord, it will help to supply our needs.
• When we give of our offerings to the Lord, it will help supply the needs of others.
• Our giving will be a cause for many thanksgivings unto God.
• It will cause others to thank God for you.
 
It matters not how much we give; we will never be able to out give God, because He has given us an unspeakable gift.
 
God has blessed America so much that He requires us to meet the needs of those less fortunate. I believe America has always gone the extra mile when it comes to helping the poor in other nations, as well as our own. My hope and prayer is that the American people will always be up front and continue to help the needy around the world. Several blessings result as we give to the poor:
 
• The one that has been helped will give honor and praise to God.
• Those that see the generosity of the giver will give praise to God.
• The one that is giving will praise God and be honored by God for his or her giving.
 
Matthew 5:16, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your
good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
 
John 15:8, “Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.”
 
Deuteronomy 8:10, “When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the LORD thy God for the good land which he hath given thee.”
 
Psalm 107:22, “And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing.”
 
TO BE CONCLUDED TOMORROW!

“IT’S BETTER TO TRUST IN THE LORD” CONCLUSION!

Read 1 Samuel 21:1-7.
 
But David learned a very valuable lesson: Read Psalm 56.
 
In verse 1 He is back to trusting God for His mercy rather than going to Achish.
 
In verse 3 “Those who trust in God when they are afraid, will soon learn to trust and not be afraid.” To trust God when there is no reason for fear is just faith. But, to be totally reliant upon God in real danger is Biblical faith at work.
 
In verse 4 Faith may be weak at times, but it can burn again. See how strong David’s trust became?
 
In verse 11 He had been afraid, but he learned to double his faith for the future.
 
In verse 12 He probably made a vow to God in trouble and now keeps it. We had better do likewise.
 
In verse 13 He realized that he had fallen, and this led him to seek God’s forgiveness and grace. That’s what we all need today.
 
LESSONS:
 
1. Learn to be truthful at all times – look at the consequences if tempted to lie.
 
2. Learn from past failures.
 
3. Realize your own faults and weaknesses and avoid them. Good men see their faults and weaknesses and avoid them.
 
4. Confess your faults and trust the Lord to deliver you from falling in the future.

“IT’S BETTER TO TRUST IN THE LORD!” PART 2.

Read 1 Samuel 21:1-7.
In Psalm 52 Doeg was a liar, deceitful, boastful, treacherous, a lover of evil more than good, a lover of lies more than truth, and a lover of seeing others hurt.
Contrast between David and Doeg:
1. David was like a green olive tree; Doeg was like a dead tree, cast out.
2. David trusted in the mercy of God; Doeg in riches.
3. David will be blessed forever; Doeg cursed.
4. David will praise God forever; Doeg will be in remorse.
5. David was an example for good; Doeg for evil.
6. David was beloved of God; Doeg was fearful.
A. God cannot be slain.
Verse 2 Eastern barbers use the razor so well that a man does not even realize his hair is being cut. So with these, God’s servants. Doeg had a soft, but sharp tongue – killed priests.
Verse 4 Some men have a taste for evil – avoid them like the plague. God will one day deal with slanderers with His justice.
Verse 7 Persecutors may be rich, but their wealth shall not save them. Justice has a way and method of dealing with them.
B. God cannot be bribed.
He will avenge His own servants and that right early.
Lesson: Learn to endure all slander for Christ’s sake.
In 21:10-15 David still trusted in the flesh. He went to Achish – he fled to the Philistines and changed his behavior.
Lesson: When we leave the plain path of faith, there is no telling what we will do and how far we will go. Look at David, acting like a mad man. (Reminds us of Shakespeare’s Hamlet) Think of how truthful the Holy Spirit was to record David, “a man after God’s own heart.”
CONCLUDED TOMORROW!

IT’S BETTER TO TRUST IN THE LORD

1 Samuel 21:1-7.
 
In verse 1, David, having been driven from Samuel by Saul, fled immediately to the man of God – good thing to do. David loved God’s servant, and would not leave their company. Ahimelech suspected that something was wrong.
 
Verse 2. Here David tells him a lie, as he also did in 20:6.
 
He lied to protect himself, but still a lie.
 
1. He lied to Saul in chapter 20.
2. He lied to Ahimelech in chapter 21.
3. He lied to Achish in 21:10-15.
 
This sin of David’s is recorded not for his honor, but for our warning. His falsehood led to a terrible consequence, as all lying always does. He trusted in his own flesh rather than in the Almighty God.
 
It’s amazing how quickly a man of faith can become a man of fear and unbelief. If we get in a hurry and trust man, or our own plans, before long everything falls to pieces and we find ourselves out of God’s fellowship, blessing and protection.
 
Verse 7, this man Doeg was full of hatred, quickly accused the priest of helping a traitor.
 
Read 22:9-23. David was cut to the heart. It was at this time that David wrote
 
Psalm 52 about Doeg (read it). Doeg had little reason to boast in slaying 85 innocent men. He was a coward.
 
CONTINUED TOMORROW!

“IT’S A MATTER OF THE HEART!” CONCLUSION!

Please read Matthew 15:1-20 again,
 
Secret religion is self-deception. If a man is truly religious it will show expression in his life – and it is no different with LOVE.
I. MAN-MADE RELIGION AND RULES ARE EXTERNAL AND ATTRACT MEN.
II. MAN-MADE RELIGIOUS RULES ARE FOR FEELING.
 
If they were for mere help etc, that would be one thing, but it always turns into a religion. Man-made rules are always going out of their place and into a place where they do not belong.
 
A. Man-made rules, religion and traditions shift the basis of authority from God to man, from true authority to false authority.
B. Man-made religion and rules exaggerate the place of self in religion. Think of it, the authority of man without God is nothing but worship of self.
C. Now follow me, man-made religious substitute a religion of hand (conduct) for the religion of the heart. Man made religious rules are for feeling, but Bible Christianity is by faith. It is a state of mind and heart. It lives what is in the heart.
 
1. It is a spiritual relationship with God.
2. It is a religion of love and setting the souls wholly on God.
3. It is the redirection of the souls trust, and fixing it on the Lord Jesus Christ.
4. It is the sanctifying of our will into the will of God.
 
D. Sincerity is the right relation between faith and feeling.
 
Christ asked for sincerity of heart and denounced insincerity. Our weakness, failures and faults can be understood, but not insincerity. Nothing can be done with it. Man must be true to himself, others and to God.
 
A man must say, by lip and act what he feels and what is in his heart. The Problem with Christianity today more than anything is that we have all the outward expressions, but not inward feelings which express themselves in sincerity of heart.
 
IT’S A MATTER OF THE HEART!

“IT’S A MATTER OF THE HEART” PART 2.

Please Read Matthew 15:1-20.

So often this is also true in our society today. Not only in the world but too often this is also true in the church. Now, let me say this.

This thought is often true not only in religion, but also in the definition of what the love of God is really all about.

I. MAN-MADE RELIGION (OR WITH LOVE) AND RULES ARE EXTERNAL AND ATTRACT MEN.

There are in every age and society people who prefer to have their religion done for them. These same people cannot and will not take the burden of personal responsibility. They want to live by the rules and often even ask for them. AND there are always others who are more than willing to meet their request.

Let me say this: It seems to be the easy way, but never really is. Neither will it give personal satisfaction. =

In all ages as even today, the man-made religion and rules are sure to make the Word of God of none effect in their lives. We ought to draw nigh to God with our mouth and honor Him with our lip.=

Christianity is holy worship, Christlike conduct accepting responsibility, taking part in the Christian activities, bring self into subjection and yes – rules.

It is not only internal, but an expression in life. A faith that says or does nothing is not real faith. A love that does nothing is no real love. If there is life in the seed, there is growth above – so with love.

CONCLUDED TOMORROW!