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What The Bible Says Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
What The Bible Says Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
What The Bible Says Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
What The Bible Says Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
What The Bible Says Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
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Each year, our deacons insist that I go in for a thorough health examination. Usually the doctor will greet me with a statement like, “Deacons sent you again, huh?” He gets it.A day or two after the exam, the doctor sends me his baseline evaluation that covers the most vital areas of health: vital signs, blood counts, cholesterol levels, and a variety of basic, measurable indicators.The reality is that we can feel healthy without actually being healthy. I suppose all of us have known someone who seemed fine—and a short time later were diagnosed with a terminal illness.The same thing can happen in leadership. We can think we're doing okay, especially if we see outward signs of ministry success. But if we do not give attention to the most basic relationships of our lives, we may be very unhealthy spiritual leaders.In a way, these three relationships seem so basic, we may just assume we're okay. But without health in these three relationships, we have no real ministry.1. A Vibrant Relationship with GodWithout a vibrant, growing relationship with God, we have nothing to give others in ministry.Is your relationship with God passionate? Purposeful? Are you seeking God, or simply seeking success?These are questions we must regularly ask ourselves, for as William Booth said, “Look well to the fire of your soul; it is always the tendency of fire to go out.”God calls us to love Him first and wholly. We are to love Him with all our hearts, minds, souls, and strength. That is a vibrant relationship with God.And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.—Mark 12:30Some of the most toxic ministry environments are led by a leader whose personal walk with God is suffering gross neglect. Unless we daily humble ourselves before God, walk in His Spirit, and depend on His grace, we become proud, hard, and demanding leaders.It's not the absence of knowledge or skill that makes poor shepherds of God's people, so often as it is the absence of following the Shepherd ourselves.When we purposefully and passionately seek God's face for ourselves, we easily dispense His grace as we lead others.2. A Growing Relationship with Your FamilyIf you are married, your relationship with your spouse is, humanly speaking, your highest relational priority.And if you are a parent, your relationship with your children is your next highest relational priority.This is so important, that God included these relationships in the qualifications for pastors and deacons (1 Timothy 3:2–5, 12).Years ago, an older pastor, seeing the complete attention I was giving to our church family and the danger of doing it to the neglect of my own family, admonished me with a statement I have never forgotten: “The church is Christ's bride, but Terrie is your bride. The church can get another pastor, but she cannot get another husband.”There is a balance here, for sure. Of course a pastor is to fully engage in what Ephesians 4:12 calls “the work of the ministry.” And I'm grateful for all the ways in which Terrie has encouraged me to passionately invest in ministry and has helped to involve our family in serving together. But I'm also thankful for her reminders over the years to slow down and create family memories.Healthy spiritual leaders do not neglect those for whom God has given them direct responsibility in order to lead others.Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;…And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.—Ephesians 5:25, 6:43. A Resilient Relationship with Your Church FamilyIn today's social media culture, it's easy to gain a virtual following without real leadership credibility. This vulnerability makes the transparency and accountability that God designed to be part of the local church all the more valuable.Simply put, a healthy spiritual leader prioritizes hands-on, personal local church ministry and service—not distant, electronic social media traction.I'm thankful for the tools of technology and the ways in which social media can augment ministry. But when social media becomes our ministry, our spiritual and leadership health is in jeopardy.Outside of my walk with God and responsibility to my family, my greatest calling in life is to be an undershepherd for Christ's church, equipping them to fulfill the Great Commission of reaching the world with the gospel (Matthew 28:19–20). If my ministry activity, then, revolves around anything other than soulwinning, discipleship, and equipping those in my local church for the work of the ministry, I'm moving into dangerous territory as it concerns my leadership health.At the end of the day, healthy ministry is about healthy relationships. It is about loving God, loving our families, and reaching people with the gospel.
Temple Baptist Church - 9-9-2018Numbers 13:23-14:3; Deuteronomy 1:1-3, 28Introduction: A. This morning, I want to preach on a subject very familiar to most of us. 1. We live in “fat” times physically but “lean” times spiritually. People who love the LORD and want to make a difference in this world find these days of spiritual discouragement. 2. I am not condoning discouragement as it is sinfulness but just explaining that all of us have this problem at times. 3. I want to look at the causes of and answers to discouragement.B. God brought Israel out of Egypt to bring them into the Promised Land. C. In our text for this morning, we find the children of Israel still in the wilderness, camped at Kadeshbarnea (Kadeshbarnea-Wilderness of the Fugitive or Wandering) but just a “hop-skip-jump” from stepping into the Promised Land—a land flowing with milk and honey! 1. A land flowing with milk and honey. A beautiful type of the child of God living in victory. God brought us out of sinful lives to bring us into a victorious life. God has promised to be with us and for us. 2. And it was such a place. “And they took of the fruit of the land in their hands, and brought it down unto us, and brought us word again, and said, It isa good land which the LORD our God doth give us.” It took two men to carry one bunch of grapes on a pole between them. 3. It was all that God said that it was! In verses 20-21, Moses told the people to “fear not neither be discouraged” Twelve spies were sent into the land and 10 gave an evil report while two gave a good one. The “evil report” discouraged the heart of the people.D. The cost of their discouraged hearts was great.1. Discouragement Traded Eleven Days For Forty Years! Vs. 2-3 Discouragement lengthens your trials and tribulations! They had already made the 11-day trip and were in Kadeshbarnea! All they had to do was cross over Jordan and the land was theirs.2. Discouragement Traded Victory For Defeat! Vs. 40; 45 Discouragement caused an assured victory from the Lord to become a devastating defeat because the Lord was not with them. Discouragement destroyed their joy!3. Discouragement Traded Canaan For The Wilderness! Vs. 25; 40 Canaan was truly a land flowing with milk and honey and the wilderness that they had come through was a barren, arid land. Discouragement will keep your soul dry while denying you the milk and honey that God intended to flood your soul!4. Discouragement Traded Their Burying Place From Canaan To The Wilderness! Vs. 35; 40 “But as for you!” Israel died in defeat! I don't know about you, but I want my life to end right. I want to die serving the Lord, not in discouragement and defeat!E. Thus, it is in our day. Discouragement is a Choice! We hear more people speaking in discouragement than you do rejoicing in victory. We do face much in the way of disappointment in our day and much of it is because of the brethren as well as the world.1. We Face The Discouragement Of Depravity – I have never seen it on this wise. Evil is called good and good is called evil. People have absolutely no morals and America has literally gone to the dogs. So have most of today's churches!2. We Face The Discouragement Of Deceivableness – Preachers and teachers have left the Old Paths of doctrinal correctness and separation for the road of popularity, prosperity, and numbers.3. We Face The Discouragement Of Division – God's people have forgotten who the enemy is and spend most of their time either mad or hurt and on the sidelines while the real battle rages around them un-noticed. Division is a sin and is a result of carnality and immaturity!4. We Face The Discouragement Of Disappointment – Family, friends, failures, etc. Murphy's Law seemingly has become a reality in these last days.F. I call Discouragement Public Enemy #1! Their hearts were discouraged (vs. 28). Sometimes, if you are not careful, you just get tired of the fight! We lose more people to discouragement than sinfulness. We lose more people to discouragement than to apostasy. We lose more people to discouragement than to division.1. They Were Discouraged Because Of The Way Though The Lord Was With Them - Numbers 21:4 And they journeyed from mount Hor by the way of the Red sea, to compass the land of Edom: and the soul of the people was much discouraged because of the way.a. You May Not Be Done Right. People and the world are not your friend spiritually.b. You May Not Be Rewarded Right. There will be times when you are overlooked or just ignored.c. You May Not Have What Others Have. Often, the world and those who do wrong seem to have all the things in life while you have few.(The way will get hard. Life is neither easy nor fair. God is greater than our disappointments.)2. They Were Discouraged By The Giants Though The Lord Was With Them – Numbers 13:33 And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight. (We all face “giants” in our lives.)a. Impossible Problems – Giants in our lives that seem to have neither solution nor end. Things that are out of our control become giants and we become grasshoppers in our own sight.b. Personal Failures – Many have the idea that saved people no longer struggle with sin but they are so wrong. Just re-read Romans, chapter 7, where Paul gave us some insight into his personal life. If you fall, just get up again. If you fall 1,000 times, just get up again. One day, we will fail and fall no more.(You will face some giants along the way of life. God is greater than our “giants!”)3. They Were Discouraged By The Brethren Though The Lord Was With Them - Deuteronomy 1:28 Whither shall we go up? our brethren have discouraged our heart, saying, The people is greater and taller than we; the cities aregreat and walled up to heaven; and moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakims there. a. God's People Are Often Divided. As much as we hate discord, it often becomes a reality to be dealt with.b. God's People Are Often Disgruntled. Evil communications corrupt good manners and being around complaining people causes discouragement.c. God's People Are Often Doubting. When people doubt God, it is contagious.d. God's People Are Often Disappearing. People come, get in, and then begin to disappear. What a discouragement to people who love the church and desire to see it grow.(Pastors, missionaries, evangelists are quitting on every hand. If you are not called, stay out of the ministry. You won't last until the “water gets hot!” People who were once faithful to God and His house are now at home complaining and pointing the finger at others. People that are in God's house have continual issues.)I want to look at two things that should keep us from being discouraged.1. The Lord's Past Performance. God did so many marvelous things for Israel and does the same for us.a. The Lord Had Delivered Them From Egypt - Numbers 33:3 And they departed from Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month; on the morrow after the passover the children of Israel went out with an high han.d in the sight of all the Egyptians.Deuteronomy 4:20 But the LORD hath taken you, and brought you forth out of the iron furnace, even out of Egypt, to be unto him a people of inheritance, as ye are this day.Jeremiah 11:4 Which I commanded your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, Obey my voice, and do them, according to all which I command you: so shall ye be my people, and I will be your God: (God has saved me and delivered me from Satan, self, and the power of sin What a wonderful deliverance He has wrought in my life.)b. The Lord Brought Them Through The Red Sea - Psalms 106:9 He rebuked the Red sea also, and it was dried up: so he led them through the depths, as through the wilderness.Exodus 14:22 And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.Exodus 15:8 And with the blast of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as an heap, and the depths were congealed in the heart of the sea.Isaiah 51:10 Art thou not it which hath dried the sea, the waters of the great deep; that hath made the depths of the sea a way for the ransomed to pass over? (Not the Sea of Reeds, but “great deep!” The Lord has brought me through some impossible situations and did so in such a way as to let me know that it was Him and Him alone who delivered!)c. The Lord Provided For Them In The Wilderness - Psalms 78:19 Yea, they spake against God; they said, Can God furnish a table in the wilderness?1) God Provided The People With Manna - Psalms 78:23-25 Though he had commanded the clouds from above, and opened the doors of heaven, 24 And had rained down manna upon them to eat, and had given them of the corn of heaven. 25 Man did eat angels' food: he sent them meat to the full.2) God Provided The People With Water - Deuteronomy 8:15 Who led thee through that great and terrible wilderness, wherein werefiery serpents, and scorpions, and drought, where there was no water; who brought thee forth water out of the rock of flint;3) God Provided The People With Clothing - Deuteronomy 8:4 Thy raiment waxed not old upon thee, neither did thy foot swell, these forty years. (I can honestly say that the Lord has been so good to me. I have lacked nothing over these past 30 years that I have been saved and do not expect to starve in the future!)(We get discouraged despite what the Lord had done for us.)2. The Lord's Perpetual Promises.a. The Lord Promised Them The Land – vs. 8, 20-21 The land was theirs for the taking and so is a victorious life here in Christ Jesus. Victorious Christian living is ours for the taking. We are over comers through faith in Christ.b. The Lord Promised To Go Before Them – vs. 30 He was before and behind Israel. The angel of the Lord encampeth about them that fear Him.c. The Lord Promised To Fight For Them – vs. 30 Who is able to stand before the Lord. If He is for us, and He is, who can be against us? Nothing is impossible with Him!d. The Lord Promised To Carried Them – vs. 31 He will equip you each day with what you need.(We get discouraged despite the Lord's promises.)Conclusion: vs. 32 Discouragement is simply not believing what the Lord has promised.Discouragement is a common sin among God's people. Discouragement is the sin of unbelief!2 Corinthians 1:10 Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us;
Temple Baptist Church - 9-2-2018Romans 9-11Introduction:A. Tonight, we will begin our journey through three chapters that are much mis-understood and, therefore, mis-interpreted. These chapters have been used as a “cracked foundation” by those who lean toward or are Calvinistic in theology.B. My desire as a pastor to rightly divide the Word of Truth to produce sound doctrine. In doing so, false doctrine will be refuted by the Word of God as sound doctrine always exposes false doctrine.C. In chapter 8, we found the Righteousness of God in Salvation. In relation to Israel, we find the Righteousness of God in Selection. GOD CHOSE THE NATION OF ISRAEL. This is not individual election to salvation which is found in faith in Christ alone.D. Years ago, I did a study on Calvinism or Tulip Theology in these three chapters. These chapters are called a Parenthetical. They are given to the believer for good reason: to explain the beginning, present, and future of the Nation of Israel. This is important because of our relationship as believers to God's elect nation, Israel.1. Chapter 9 – The National Election of the Nation of Israel – SelectionIsaiah 45:4 For Jacob my servant's sake, and Israel mine elect, I have even called thee by thy name: I have surnamed thee, though thou hast not known me.2. Chapter 10 – The National Rejection by the Nation of Israel – SeparationJohn 1:10-11 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. (11) He came unto his own, and his own received him not.3. Chapter 11 – The National Restoration of the Nation of Israel – SalvationZechariah 12:10 And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.Zechariah 13:6 And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.E. In chapters 9-11, we find:1. Israel's Past in Selection. No choice involved in selection.2. Israel's Present in Separation. Choice involved in separation.3. Israel's Future in Salvation. Choice involved in salvation.F. In Romans, chapter 8, we find God's everlasting love for His Church. Romans 8:38-39 declares that nothing can separate God's people from His love. This leads into chapters 9-11 and the Nation of Israel. As God is not yet finished with you and I, He is not finished with the Nation of Israel. G. In Romans, chapters 9-11, we find God's everlasting love for His Elect Nation of Israel.Jeremiah 31:1-17 At the same time, saith the LORD, will I be the God of all the families of Israel, and they shall be my people. (2) Thus saith the LORD, The people which were left of the sword found grace in the wilderness; even Israel, when I went to cause him to rest. (3) The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee. (4) Again I will build thee, and thou shalt be built, O virgin of Israel: thoushalt again be adorned with thy tabrets, and shalt go forth in the dances of them that make merry. (5) Thou shalt yet plant vines upon the mountains of Samaria: the planters shall plant, and shall eat them as common things. (6) For there shall be a day, that the watchmen upon the mount Ephraim shall cry, Arise ye, and let us go up to Zion unto the LORD our God. (7) For thus saith the LORD; Sing with gladness for Jacob, and shout among the chief of the nations: publish ye, praise ye, and say, O LORD, save thy people, the remnant of Israel. (8) Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth, and with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child and her that travaileth with child together: a great company shall return thither. (9) They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn. (10) Hear the word of the LORD, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock. (11) For the LORD hath redeemed Jacob, and ransomed him from the hand of him that was stronger than he. (12) Therefore they shall come and sing in the height of Zion, and shall flow together to the goodness of the LORD, for wheat, and for wine, and for oil, and for the young of the flock and of the herd: and their soul shall be as a watered garden; and they shall not sorrow any more at all. (13) Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, both young men and old together: for I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from their sorrow. (14) And I will satiate the soul of the priests with fatness, and my people shall be satisfied with my goodness, saith the LORD. (15) Thus saith the LORD; A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rahel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because they were not. (16) Thus saith the LORD; Refrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears: for thy work shall be rewarded, saith the LORD; and they shall come again from the land of the enemy. (17) And there is hope in thine end, saith the LORD, that thy children shall come again to their own border.H. In the opening chapter 9:1-3, we find Paul's sorrow for the Nation of Israel's Failure. In the closing chapter 11:26-36, we find Paul's joy for theNation of Israel's Future.I. In each of these three chapters, Paul begins and ends with the Nation of Israel. Therefore, the context demands interpretation to be to the Nation of Israel.Chapter 9:Romans 9:3-4 For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh: (4) Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises;Romans 9:31-33 But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. (32) Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone; (33) As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.Chapter 10:Romans 10:1 Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.Romans 10:21 But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.Chapter 11:Romans 11:1-2 I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. (2) God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying,Romans 11:25-27 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. (26) And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: (27) For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.J. Why the Parenthetical concerning the Nation of Israel? These chapters do several things for the believer:1. God opens our eyes to the Importance of the Nation of Israel. Israel is the most hated nation on earth. Why, because of people's hatred of the God of Israel. The Bible says that the world will hate us because it hated Him first. Throughout the history of Israel, they have fought just for the right to exist. The nations that hate Israel would love to see Israel driven out of the land and annihilated. God honors those who honor Him and His!2. God burdens our hearts for the Salvation of Individual Israelites. In our further study, we will see that blindness IN PART has happened to Israel because of their rejection of the Messiah but individuals can and are being saved through faith in Christ.3. God exhorts us to continue in our prayers for the Return of Nation of Israel. In chapter 11, we will see the grafting in of the “natural branch” and the blessing that Israel, in a revived condition, will be to the world.4. God will bless us who continue to bless the Nation of Israel. In Genesis 12:2-3, God said: “And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: (3) And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.”
Temple Baptist Church - 9-2-2018Ephesians 5:22-33Introduction: A. I normally use these verses when people get married or need marital counseling but the underlying truth is that it is an analogy to Christ and His Church.B. I cannot over emphasize the importance of what we are doing this morning! “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together.” In His absence, the Lord gave us three things—the Holy Spirit, the Bible, and the local church.C. The three of these things work together for our benefit and God's glory.D. One of the main problems with the end-time church is that of priority and purpose. When our purpose becomes confused, our priorities become wrong. When our priorities are wrong, it leads to selfish living. Selfishness leads to conflict. Conflict leads to confusion. Confusion leads to failure of purpose!1. The local church is not a Recreation Center for sinners. A place where the sinner can come and feel comfortable and good about himself. A place where he/she are not convicted of sinfulness and pointed to Christ. A place where the sinner is placated and not preached to.2. The local church is not a fast food restaurant for the shallow saint. It is a place of peaching that feeds their faith, not pumps their flesh.3. The local church is not a rest home for the carnal saint. It is a place of preaching that convicts the soul and stirs their service.4. The local church is an assembly of the saints for worship, education, and edification! E. There are seven things that I want to quickly mention concerning the Christ and His Church found in these verses:1. Christ is the Head of the Church. Verse 23.2. Christ is the Saviour of the Church. Verse 23.3. Christ is the Lover of the Church. Verse 25.4. Christ is the Sacrifice of the Church. Verse 25.5. Christ is the Owner of the Church. Verse 27.6. Christ is the Caretaker of the Church. Verse 29.7. Christ is the Union of the Church. Verses 30-31F. I believe that the general forsaking of the local church in these days is one of the main signs of the “falling away.” People who do not love the church do not love Christ!G. The local church is a thing of great value as well as a thing of great love.1. For the Lost Sinner, the church is a Rescue Mission. I was saved in church and love the church because of it. “When a congregation stops winning souls, it loses the primarypurpose for existence.”a. The Work Of The Saviour was to save the Sinner. Luke 19:10 For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.b. The Wisdom Of The Saint is to warn the sinner. Proverbs 11:30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.c. The Waste Of The Sinner is to either not hear or to reject God's Word. Matthew 9:37-38 Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.John 4:35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.d. The Worth Of The Soul is the wealth of the world. Matthew 16:26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?1 Peter 1:18-19 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:2. For the World, the church is a place of Reaching Out. The Command To Go – Through Missionsa. Where to Go – All The World. Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.b. How to Go – Through Missions. Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.c. Why to Go – To Preach And Teach. Matthew 28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:3. For the Saint, the church is a place Edification.a. There Is Feeding. 1 Peter 5:2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;b. There Is Feasting. 1 Peter 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:Hebrews 5:14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.4. For The Weary Servant, the church is a place of Refreshment.a. There Is Encouragement. Acts 14:21-22 And when they had preached the gospel to that city, and had taught many, they returned again to Lystra, and to Iconium, and Antioch, Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.b. There Is Edification. Jude 20 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,Ephesians 4:11-12 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:5. For the Sickly Saint, the church is a Rest Home: A Place Of Recuperation.a. There is Reassurance For The Faint. 2 Corinthians 1:4 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.b. There is Restoration For The Fallen - Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.2 Corinthians 2:7 So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.
Temple Baptist Church - 8-26-2018Ephesians 4:18-16Introduction:A. When the Lord ascended from Abraham's Bosom, He gave gifts to the church to be used in carrying on the work in His absence. Verse 11.1. These gifts were both passing and permanent as the Old Testament and New Testament met in the days of Christ. 2. In the transitional period of the early church, before the completion of inspired scripture (1 Corinthians 13:9-12), certain passing or partial gifts were necessary. When the canon of scripture was complete, the passing or partial gifts were no longer necessary.3. The apostles and prophets (to foretell, not to forth tell) were passing gifts while the evangelist and pastor-teacher were permanent gifts.B. Apostles and prophets were gifts to the early church but ceased to exist in the First Century. Two permanent gifts remain to this day: the evangelist (missionary) and the pastor-teacher.1. These gifts were different in nature and yet merging in their work. 2. The evangelist, or missionary – evangelist means to bear good news. It also comes from a root word that means to pastor. The evangelist carries the gospel to places where it has never been heard and then does “the work of the pastor” as he becomes the pastor of the church that he starts.3. The pastor-teacher – pastor means shepherd. To oversee both the people and the affairs of the local church. He is to be an example to the flock, feed the flock, protect the flock, rule over the flock, and guide the flock. He is also to evangelize or do “the work of an evangelist”.C. Many churches no longer desire pastors. 1. They want preachers, hirelings, who will “cherry pick” the Bible. Men who are heavy upon exhortation and light on sanctification. Men who neither oversee or rule as Deacon Boards and Trustees now have dominion. Notice that I am saying men, not women as many now have women for pastors and deacons.2. Reproving and rebuking are just as much a part of preaching as exhorting but must be done with longsuffering and doctrine. Because of the sinfulness of our nature and the perfectness of the Word of God, this sharp—two-edged sword must be allowed to do its work in our lives.D. I want to look at what Paul said about the pastor-teacher's ministry. Vs. 12. The Work of the Pastor-Teacher.1. For the Perfecting of the Saints. Helping God's people to grow in the Lord. “Be no more children.”2. For the Work of the Ministry. To oversee the local church by guiding and protecting, not to become a dictator.3. For the Edifying of the Body of Christ. Educate, enlighten, exhort, and enrich. To build up, not tear down.E. God set forth in our text how all of this is to be done. Verses 13-16.1. It is a continuing work! “Till” A space of time or to a certain point. My work will never be done because of the word “all.” a. Because people get saved and need to be taught; because new families come in who have never been taught! Because our small children grow up and need to be taught! Repeatedly, we cover the same material. To refresh and re-enforce the teaching of God's Word to us older folks lest we forget; to ground the incoming and upcoming in the Word of Truth. b. Too many good pastors step down while they are still in good health and mind. When they learn how to pastor a church, they turn it over to someone who is still learning.2. It is an inclusive work! “We” As you grow, I grow. a. I do not know it all and continue to make mistakes. I continue to be enlightened as I study to enlighten you. You do not know it all and continue to make mistakes. The Bible corrects us.b. God gave me a church with 8 people because I was not an experienced pastor. As the church grew, I grew. We all made our mistakes, but we have survived. The Bible “thoroughly furnishes” us.3. It is an equal work! “All” From the back pew to the front pew, everyone is equally important. a. I understand that not all will grow because not all want to grow. Some are just slower to grow than others. When raising our children, we speak of “growing pains.” People have “growing pains” spiritually.b. Spiritual growth requires effort and obedience. That is why the work of the pastor-teacher is a continuing work.4. It is a unifying work! “Unity” The greatest enemy of the church sits upon its pews. a. Division, becoming offended or hurt, are normally caused by small petty things of no eternal value. Petty things become the things that destroy the unity of the local church. b. “Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them” should be our motto, our battle cry. As we grow, we must remain unified. Let nothing cause you to leave this church except apostasy and unrebuked sin.5. It is a faith work! “Of faith” Churches must learn to be faith based. a. I know that this church should be operated with fiscal responsibility, but it must also operate by faith. We expect our people to live by faith, but the churches often walk by sight. “Whatsoever is not of faith is sin” applies to the local church also. b. Learning to trust the Lord with all our heart is an ever learning work.6. It is relationship-based work! “Knowledge of the Son of God” Paul said, “That I may know Him.” a. The most important part of the work of the church takes place when its members grow closer to Christ Jesus. Getting to know the One who died for us.b. I have often said that if we get closer to Christ, the questionable things of life are answered from within. My work is not to separate God's people from the world. That is God's work. My work is to exhort you to grow closer to God.7. It is maturing work! “Unto a perfect man” We, as older Christians, should carry with our hoary heads an infinite wisdom. a. We white-haired Christians have been at this for many years and should be sterling examples to the younger ones. They should be able to follow us as we follow Christ.b. Soon, they will be the white-haired Christians because we will be gone and our heritage must become their heritage for it to remain.8. It is a conforming work! “The measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ” Not conforming to a set of rules or even to a set of values. a. Conforming to the image of the One who loved us, saved us, and owns us. Not to my measure, not to your measure, but to His measure!b. Then and only then, the word Christian becomes one of reality instead of just a title to be worn.9. It is a doctrinal work! “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.” a. Doctrine has become a dirty word to most religionists as they say that “doctrine divides, love unifies.” God said that we are to study, now, and remain doctrinally pure.b. There can be no true brotherly love without true Bible doctrine. As we are to worship in “spirit and truth,” we are to love in “spirit and truth.”10. It is a sharing work! “But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ.” As we mature, we share our faith to a lost world that lies outside of the local church.11. It is a selfless work! “From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” When we become the perfect man or woman, we realize that it is not all about us. The acrostic of the word JOY says it all.J – Jesus first.O – Others second.Y – You last.
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