Again I Say Rejoice!
By Bobby Blakey on July 28, 2019
Again I Say Rejoice!
By Bobby Blakey on July 28, 2019
This is a rush transcript.
[00:00:02] Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say rejoice.
[00:00:07] Now, if you're wondering what that was about right there, this is Summer of Joy here at CompassHB and we are study in the Book of Philippians. And I invite you to open your Bible and turn with me to Philippians 2:12-18. And that's our theme verse for this summer. Philippians four for Rejoice in the Lord Always. And tonight our sermon is entitled again.
[00:00:31] I say rejoice because we're going to see how we can rejoice in the Christian life in practical ways here in Philippians to 12 to 18 page 981. If you got one of our books and I really want us to give this text of scripture our full and undivided attention here in the next few minutes together. So out of respect for God's word, I'm gonna ask if everybody would stand up for our scripture reading here this evening. And I'm to read these versus starting in chapter two, verse 12. Please follow along and let's really hear what the spirit of God has to say to us through the word tonight.
[00:01:13] Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed. So now not only is in my presence, but much more in my absence. Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you both to will and to work for his good pleasure. Do all things without grumbling or disputing that you may be blameless in innocent children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of a life so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain. Even if I am to be poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrificial offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all.
[00:02:14] Likewise, you also should be glad and rejoice with me that in the reading of God's word, please go ahead and grab your seat. And I just want to take you through three practical things that its saying about our Christian life here together. Remember, Philippians is written by the apostle Paul who is in prison, and yet the theme of the letter is Joy. So he's teaching us how to get past our emotions, our circumstances, and really tap into the joy that we have through our salvation in Jesus Christ and our our passage verse twelve. You can look at it. It says there four or so then is another way you could translate that. Now, we just had it. Therefore, back in verse nine, looked back at verse nine, and it says, therefore, God is highly exalted him, which is Jesus and bestowed on him the name that is above every name. So that the name of Jesus, every need should bauen heaven on earth and under the earth. And every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is who. Who do we learn that he is is the Lord. As the name above all names, when Jesus is revealed to be the Lord, every knee is going to hit the floor. Everyone is going to confess who he really is. Now that was that.
[00:03:33] Therefore, Jesus humbled himself. It was obedient to the point of death. Therefore, God exalted him to the name above all names. So can you see Jesus and all of His Majesty at the right hand of the father? Ready to return. Ready to rain. Ready to be revealed in all of his glory.
[00:03:51] Therefore, here's how you should live your life. That's what this therefore is for. In verse twelve. If you know Jesus as Lord. Therefore, let's talk now about how you should conduct yourself. And he says, My beloved, clearly Paul has a strong connection with these people. He says, hey, you've obeyed before in my presence. But even now, in my absence. He gives them a command here, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Now, excuse me, as we work as we work our way through this text, OK? We could study the practical things that he's telling these people to do. But there's a whole background. There's a whole kind of context that he really wants us to understand or he expects us to understand to get the full depth of meaning. Now, there's a phrase here, if you keep reading with me, verse 14, do all things without grumbling or disputing how we're going to talk about that one in a minute. Everybody, that's. Brace yourselves. That's common. Get your seat belts on here. Verse 15 that you may be blameless in innocent children of God without blemish. And then it sets this phrase right here in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation. Now, maybe you're you're watching the news, you're you're reading the headlines and you hear this phrase crooked and twisted generation, and you want to think, Aymen. All right. Yeah, let's talk about America's go in the wrong direction, right? Yeah, we are.
[00:05:22] We're the generation is not on the straight and narrow. They've taken things that are pure and good. And they have twisted them. They've perverted them. Yeah, that's us. Well, that's us living in America right now. As Christians, we're in the middle of a crooked and twisted generations. He actually, when we read that phrase, what I think Paul maybe expects the Philippians to know definitely what Paul is thinking about. What he is referring to is this phrase right here is a quote from the Old Testament.
[00:05:54] It's a direct quote.
[00:05:55] In fact, it's word for word from Deuteronomy 32, verse four. And so clearly, when Paul was setting up this dynamic of these people who are working out their salvation with fear and trembling, because God's working in these people who aren't grumbling or disputing, but they're actually shining his lights in the darkness. They're actually holding on to the word of life. And they're doing this in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation. So he has a thought that he's referring to.
[00:06:29] OK. And we refer to it as the Old Testament. Now, I might get a little worked up here. All right. So just bear with me for a second. But I want to I want to challenge you a little bit. I want to get you thinking here tonight. I want to ask you this question. Why do we call it the Old Testament?
[00:06:46] Why do we refer to more than half of the scripture given to us by God? Why do we refer to it as old? Does anybody like to be referred to as old here this evening?
[00:07:00] Right. What if I what if I came up here tonight and I was like, yeah, we're really happy to have so-and-so here tonight. They're one of the older people here in our church. Would you think I was a good pastor if I said something like that? All right. Would they play a minor role here in the church? Can everybody welcome them? That's what we call 12 of the books of the Old Testament. We call them minor. Why are we dissin the word of God like this? You ever hear somebody refer to God as the old man upstairs? How does that make you feel when you hear somebody refer to God like that?
[00:07:28] That like fighting words to anybody else, or am I the only one who gets riled up when somebody says, what do you mean old? How about eternal? Let's start with that. Right. You know, I mean. Why do we referred? I understand there's an old covenant and there's a new covenant. But do you know what Jesus called the Old Testament? He said the law was one way that he referred to it. He referred to it as the law and the prophets. And Luke, 24, he referred to it as the law and the prophets and the Psalms is what he said, often referred to as the writings and Jesus in his famous Sermon on the Mount.
[00:08:06] He said, I did not come to abolish the law. I came to fulfill it. Then he said, this heaven and earth are going to pass away.
[00:08:19] But not one little part of my word will pass away. The word of God is eternal. It is alive. It is not old. And I think the fact that you and I think of it as old is not helping us realize how much we need to know God's word that he has spoken to us.
[00:08:42] So turn with me. All of that to say we're going to Deuteronomy everybody and we're spending some quality time in Deuteronomy. And I hope you don't think of it as less than or ancient or out of date or obsolete. I hope you realize that Paul was referring to it when he said Crooked and Twisted Generation. Look at it with me. And Deuteronomy 32, verse four. It's at the bottom of page one hundred and seventy three. If you got one of our.
[00:09:11] He got one of our Bibles. It's at the bottom here of one hundred and seventy three. And we'll start in verse four. It refers to God the rock. His work is perfect for all his ways are justice, a god of faithfulness and without iniquity, just an upright. Is he. And then verse five.
[00:09:31] They have dealt corruptly with him. They are no longer his children because they are blemished. They are a crooked and twisted generation. So this is a song here, a song that Moses is speaking to the people. Towards the end of Deuteronomy, if you know what Deuteronomy means, it means the second. That's Deuce's duo Deuteronomy. The second telling of the law.
[00:09:59] The first telling of God's law was in Exodus when they got the Ten Commandments after God delivered them out of Egypt. Well. And now they've wandered around in the wilderness. And they're getting ready to go into the promised land. And so what we have here is the second tallying of the law. And here's the tragedy, here's what happened to God's people. Here's what all of us are supposed to understand the context that Paul is talking about. All of us are supposed to know the story and learn from the story is that God saved his people out of slavery, out of Egypt. He did amazing miracles, a great deliverance. He parted the Red Sea. He brought them through. And you know what? God's own people did.
[00:10:44] They disobeyed his commands. And they grumbled and they disputed.
[00:10:50] And the people who should have been bringing God, glory and obeying what he says were the crooked and twisted generation. The people who should have been the children of their father in heaven know now they're full of blemish.
[00:11:08] Now they've twisted the word of God. Now they've gone astray from his commands.
[00:11:16] So do you understand that when he says a crooked and twisted generation, that is not for anybody to sit here tonight and be like, Yeah. Preach, man, the America needs to hear that message?
[00:11:27] That is a message for the people of God who have far too often not taken obedience of God seriously and not lived like grateful children of a father in heaven.
[00:11:39] But like complaining ingrates, that's who it's TaKaDu Stark and a mean you.
[00:11:45] And saying, hey, you better watch out or you'll be a part of the crooked and twisted generation, just like God's people did back in the wilderness.
[00:11:54] And think about the analogy. Think of how it perfectly applies to us. God delivered his people, the Israelites. He delivered them out of slavery to Pharaoh and the Egyptians. He was bringing them through the wilderness. And he was taking them to the promised land, flowing with milk and honey that he told them was gonna be this great place where they could have a great relationship with him. And he was on the way from salvation towards the Promised Land.
[00:12:24] That was where they started to disobey his commands. That was where the God's own people started grumbling about things that they did not have. And they started to dispute with God. And were they happy and content with what how good God was being to them?
[00:12:44] No, they were testing God and speaking against God and dialoging with God in a way, to say what you have given us is not good enough.
[00:12:54] So this is an analogy for you.
[00:12:57] If you're here tonight and you are a Christian person and you have a testimony like these beautiful testimonies we heard from Frankie and Andrew and you've got testimony and your testimony is. Yeah, I was I was a slave to my sin. I was lost in myself. And you know what God did? He delivered me out of my sin. He saved my soul. He did a miracle in my life. And you know, what God's promised me is the fullness of my salvation is going to be in with him in heaven forever. I'm going to get a new body. I'm going to be made perfect. Like Jesus Christ. I will have no more sin.
[00:13:32] And so now here I am going from my salvation towards the promised land of Heaven. And I'm wandering through the wilderness. See, this is what Paul is using to set up you and me. And are we going to be just like the Israelites who experienced this great work of God but did not take obedience seriously?
[00:13:55] And started to complain about what God was doing in their lives. You and I are in great danger of falling into this chronological snobbery, will, will, will think, oh, we won't do what the people did in the Old Testament. Oh, yes, we will. And we hear what the word of God says and take it to heart. We will make the same exact mistakes. Now go back to the beginning of Deuteronomy 32. Look what it says here. Deuteronomy 32, verse one.
[00:14:24] Give ear. Oh, heavens. And I will speak. Let the earth hear the words of my mouth. Okay, so the song begins with this call-out.
[00:14:36] Now, this might just seem like poetic language, but let's try to think about this. Me and you here together, we're gonna we're not going to think about the Old Testament. Let's think about the law and the prophets and the writings a little bit. Let's think about this word of God.
[00:14:49] They appeal to the heavens to listen. Let the earth here.
[00:14:55] Hey, why? Why is that how this song, Deuteronomy 32, that's going to recount the history of Israel, how God has been so good, but they have been not so good. Why does it begin with heavens? Listen up. Earth. Hear what I'm saying. Go back to Chapter four of Deuteronomy. Go back to Chapter four.
[00:15:19] Deuteronomy, Chapter four. What were the when the book really begins here, he recounts some of the history of what's happened between Exodus and Deuteronomy. And then you can see here at the end of chapter four, this is page one hundred and fifty. There's a heading here, introduction to the law.
[00:15:38] And so if you look at Chapter five, you can see chapter five is the retelling, the second telling of the Ten Commandments. And then Chapter six is the most famous passage of the law. The SHIMAA here. Oh, Israel. And that's where it goes on to say that God is one and they should love God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength. So now he's transitioning here at the end of four from recounting the history of Israel to now giving them the commands of God. He's told them about how God save them out of Egypt. But now you've been saved. OK, here's what God now tells you to do.
[00:16:18] And Liquidy says here in Deuteronomy four, verse 44. This is the law that Moses set before the people of Israel. These are the testimonies, the statutes and the rules which Moses spoke to the people of Israel when they came up out of Egypt beyond the Jordan in the valley, opposite that peor in the land of Psion, the king of the Amritsar, had all these all these places here.
[00:16:42] Right. This is the law that he gave them. Can now go back with me to verse 25. All right. I want you to go back. We're seeing that he's getting ready to give them the law before he gives them the law. Look at verse 25. This is Deuteronomy for 25.
[00:17:00] When you fathered children and children's children and have grown old in the land. If you act corruptly by making a carved image in the form of anything and by doing what is evil in the side of the Lord, your God.
[00:17:15] So as to provoke him to anger. I call heaven and earth to witness against you today that you will soon utterly perish from the land that you were going over the Jordan to possess. You will not live long in it, but will be utterly destroyed.
[00:17:38] So this is how God spoke to his people, this is the whole dynamic that was setup. I've done this amazing work to save you. I've delivered you out of Egypt. Now I'm going to tell you what to do, how to live. And if you don't live this way, I'm calling to witnesses. I want heaven to be witness number one.
[00:18:00] I want earth to be witness number two. And I want them to testify and take notice that if you don't do what I say, there will be these consequences.
[00:18:12] In fact, you won't live long in this promised land. You will be destroyed in the promised land.
[00:18:18] So God is making it very clear that he has an expectation for his people how they are supposed to live. So this is it in the law. He's calling heaven and earth is witnesses. And he's saying, here's my expectation, you should live this way.
[00:18:37] Now go with me to the prophets. Everybody turn to the book, Isaiah. Let's go to Isaiah, chapter one. OK, so remember the what we refer to as the Old Testament, which I'm suggesting to you, may not be the best of names for the eternal living word of God. It's really the law. And then the prophets. Isaiah was the first book of the prophets. So we've seen now Deuteronomy, the second telling of the law, the end of the law. Isaiah, for the the first book without it's the most famous of the prophets. It wasn't the first one in their order, but it's the biggest one. Look at what it says here, Isaiah. Chapter one. Verse one. It's the first book. And the prophets in our version are English translation, not in the Jewish Hebrew Bible. Isaiah, chapter one, verse one. Look at what it says here. See if this is starting to make sense, why it starts like this. The law said, here's what you're supposed to do. Now look what Isaiah says. The vision of Isaiah, the son of Amos, which he saw concerning Judah in Jerusalem, the lower kingdom of Israel, the capital city, and the days of all these kings of Judah.
[00:19:45] Verse two here. Oh, heavens. And give ere. Oh, Earth, for the Lord has spoken. What is Isaiah doing here at the beginning of his work? He's saying, hey, let's bring out the two witnesses. Children have I reared and brought up, but they have rebelled against me. Oh, it's time now.
[00:20:11] See, between the law and the prophet Isaiah, there's like 700 years. And so here it is now, 700 years later from from when Moses writes to Isaiah, they're 700 years from when Isaiah writes to Jesus. There's about 700 years. And it's like, OK, we gave the law. We have the witnesses. All right. Now, here's what we're gonna do. We're gonna call the witnesses to gather around and we're gonna talk about what's been happening in God's own people.
[00:20:39] His own children have rebelled against him. So this is the context that you and I need to think through when we're studying Philippians two.
[00:20:51] And we see the crooked and twisted generation that is not talking about people out there who don't know God. That's target about people who claim to know God. People who claim to be his children. And yet.
[00:21:08] They rebelled against him. They don't obeys commands. They don't take seriously his promises in his word.
[00:21:17] They would rather complain about what's happening today than trust that they're going to the promised land.
[00:21:24] That's who it's talking about.
[00:21:27] OK. So if you're taking notes here, let's look here. Let's keep it open here to Isaiah, where he's talking about how the children rebelled. And now let's think through what it's saying in our texts, with this context, with this backdrop of the law and the prophets where God's own people that God brought out of Egypt, that God told they were going to a promised land.
[00:21:50] They're in the middle. They've been saved. They're ready to experience the fullness of that salvation in the presence of God. They're in between the beginning of their salvation and the end of it in God's presence.
[00:22:04] And what happens? They do disobey bay right there in the middle. Maybe now it makes sense in Philippians two verse twelve. Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed. So now not only is in my presence, but much more in my absence.
[00:22:21] Work out your own salvation with fear. And what does it say?
[00:22:30] They know in our mindset that we have today where we act like the Old Testament isn't as important as the rest of the scripture, that is the New Testament.
[00:22:41] What I hear a lot of people say about lines like this and notice this is a New Testament line that you and I are supposed to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling. Now, I've been going to church most of my life. And what I've heard so many different people say at this point in the sermon or this point of the Bible study when it says fear here, it doesn't really mean fear.
[00:23:06] Anybody ever heard that one before? Anybody ever heard that? Why? The only one who's ever heard that. Have you heard that before? Somebody get my back right now. Who's heard that before? Thank you. Thank you. I see you. Thank you. Thank you. You know, it's not really talking about being afraid. It's talking about just a respect. Just a reverence. Just in Oz, this sounding familiar and anybody. Well, if it's just to respect the reverence in it all. Why does he feel like he needs to throw trembling on there? OK. Look, look, he's there's words that mean reverence and awe and respect. He could use those words if he wanted to use those words.
[00:23:41] Do you realize how many people have experienced something mighty, mighty and powerful that God has done in their life and they've acted like they've praised God and they've acted like they've believed in God, and then they have continued not to obey God in their life? How dare you think you couldn't be one of those people?
[00:24:02] That's what this passage is saying.
[00:24:05] And if Jesus is Lord of your life, do you know how many people and how many people in the Old Testament times? How many people in the last two thousand years of church history have said, I know Jesus is Lord and they have not obeyed the commands of the Lord Jesus Christ? Do you know how many people have professed it and did not practice it? Do you know how many people have ended up being hypocrites when they never wanted to or intended? But they did because they didn't really take the commands of God seriously? Hey, you know the attitude that you should take towards obedience, you should work out your salvation, is work that God's done in you. You should work it out in your life with fear and trembling. That's how serious you should take.
[00:24:46] That's what it's saying.
[00:24:47] You think you're above all the hundreds of thousands of people who have fallen. You don't think that could happen to you?
[00:24:55] Now, you should have a sense of fear, you should have a sense of trembling. Now you know your own weakness. You know your own temptations. Now, if it's up to you, you're not going to make it. Yeah, you need to take this very seriously. That's what he's saying.
[00:25:10] Look, Jesus is the Lord, he's the boss. He's the master. He's told you what to do.
[00:25:16] Are you taking that seriously? So many people have it. I mean, that wasn't that what Frankie was telling us just a few minutes ago? Heard all about it. Did it really change the way that she lived? No. That's what he's saying here.
[00:25:31] OK, so let's just make it very clear, it's not saying work for your salvation with your in trembling. No, he's talking to people here that he's considering believers, people who share the joy of Jesus with him. He's not saying work for your salvation. He's saying you have salvation.
[00:25:48] Work it out. Live it out. Practice it now. Put it into action and take it very seriously. And then he gives us this great encouragement. Look at the second part of the verse here, or verse 13, the giver's 13.
[00:26:04] For it is God who works in you both to Will and to work for is good pleasure.
[00:26:14] The reason that you can have the hope of doing good works as a Christian, that you can practice now your salvation and really live it out. The reason you can hope that you can do something is because God is the one who's actually doing the work in your life. Can I get any men from anybody on this case? So this is one of those things that's an antenna. Me. OK. That's a fancy word we use to say something that looks like a paradox, which is another fancy word to say. Two ideas that contradict. Right.
[00:26:44] So it looks like there's a contradiction here. It's telling you to work it out with fear and trembling like it's up to you. But then it's saying it's actually God who is the one who is doing the work. In fact, he's going to make you want to do it. And then he's going to actually make you do it. That's so God's gonna be the one doing the work.
[00:27:02] So when it comes to living out the Christian life, who's doing the work? Is he you or is it God? Answer yes.
[00:27:10] Yes, yes. Is what it's saying. Right.
[00:27:13] So people they go off both sides of the path here. They fall into a ditch on either side. Some people, they are trying as hard as they possibly can. And that's the problem. It's all about them trying. They're not trusting that God is the one doing the work in them. They're just mustering up as much strength as they can to do it themselves. They're never going to make it trying to do it themselves. They're gonna fall short. And then you've got the people who are just kind of kicking back and like when. Well, when when when I'm gonna do something for God, he's gonna fire me up. And until he fires me up, until he really gets me going. I don't want to do anything just out of a show of fake works or anything like that. I don't want to be a hypocrite. So I'm just going to wait for God to fire me up.
[00:27:58] I'm just gonna sit here on the couch and keep Joe. Right. So you can fall into either one of those ditches. Some of us might be in one of those ditches right now, self-reliant. Try and really hard waiting for God to do something, doing nothing. You've got to be thinking both of those ways at the same time. That's what Paul saying. You got to go work it out with fear and trembling. You got to take it so seriously. You got to make sure you're doing be careful to do what God says. But the whole time you're encouraged, you're empowered knowing it's actually God doing the work in you. Now, look at verse 12, go back to verse twelve, because here's something that you might miss, like a verse 12 here.
[00:28:39] He says, as you have always obeyed. So now not only is in my presence, but much more in my. What does he say? They're much more in my word. OK, so here's the thing. When I'm around other Christian people, when I come to church, when I see my brothers and sisters, that really encourages me to obey. Paul saying, hey, I saw you guys obey when I was there.
[00:29:02] I'm gone now, but I'm expecting you to keep obeying.
[00:29:07] And it's clear from the context of Philippians, these people are being persecuted. They were having tension even among themselves. Like this wasn't easy for them to Christians to live the Christian life.
[00:29:19] Paul's not there to help them anymore. Is he saying, hey, that's that's an excuse?
[00:29:24] No, he said, even though I'm not there, even though it's hard, you're suffering, there's division among you. I still expect to see you are in here about your obedience. Even in my absence, you should be working it out with fear and trembling. You know what Paul's saying there is he's saying it's your responsibility to make sure you're living out the Christian life. You cannot blame your lack of living, the Christian life on the people around you. Whether they're there for you and they're present, whether they're not there for you and they're absent.
[00:29:59] No, you need to be obeying no matter what's going on around you. Your churches preaching the word people are coming alongside of you, encouraging you. Well, that's going to help your obedience.
[00:30:09] But even if you're a spiritual leader, your mentor, the apostle Paul, he's in prison. All you've got is a letter. He's not there with you. It's not like the glory days when Paul was there and these amazing things were happening. He still expects obedience.
[00:30:24] See, so many of us are making excuses based on our environment, based on our support, based on the encouragement we're getting or not getting from the people around us were saying things like, well, how can I be expected to obey when they're so much against me? He's not letting them out like that.
[00:30:40] He's saying you're responsible. Work it out with with fear, with trembling. Take it seriously. But then here's the encouragement. It's actually God doing all of the work in you.
[00:30:51] And the Greek word for work here. We see it two times in verse 13. God who works in you both two will to want and to work for his good pleasure. Both of those words that are translated work in our English translation. They come from the Greek word that we get energy from it, saying God is the one who's giving you the energy to do the work.
[00:31:16] OK, we're in Isaiah one. Go to Isaiah 40 with me. Everybody turn over to Isaiah 40. And here's a great truth about God that the end of Isaiah 40, this chapter where we're encouraged to behold our God, to see who God really is. It has all these amazing things about God in this chapter, how great he is in his creation, his salvation. But then it says this Isaiah 40, verse 28.
[00:31:45] I really hope this encourages you as you have to commit yourself to the work of obedience in the Christian life as you need to go work out your salvation. Here's some encouragement. Have you not known? Have you not heard Isaiah 40. Verse 28.
[00:32:02] The Lord is the everlasting God, the creator of the ends of the Earth. He does not faint or grow weary. His understanding is unsearchable. In fact, like a verse twenty nine, he gives power to the faint. And to him, who has no might. He increases strength, even use shall faint and be weary. Young men shall fall exhausted. But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint. We serve a God. We obey a God who has ever lasting energy. He does not ever sleep or slumber. He doesn't need to get plugged in to a charger at the end of the day. His battery is not running low. He's operating at 100 percent power and efficiency at all times.
[00:33:03] That's who God is.
[00:33:05] And not only does God have unlimited power. But it says that that power will energize you.
[00:33:14] Do you feel like you're growing faint? Guess who's gonna give you strength? Feel like you're weak and you have no my guess. Who will increase your power? We have a god of everlasting energy, and he wants to give it all to you.
[00:33:28] So anything that God tells you to do on his word, any act of obedience, you're feeling like this is something I know God wants me to do this, but it's hard. How will I be able to do it? It feels like it's going to be a challenge. I promise you this. There is always energy to obey God.
[00:33:48] His energy is always there, his power, his strength is always there to do the work in you. Point number one, let's get it down like this. You can rejoice in God's energy to do work. You can rejoice in God's energy to do work. We've seen the idea of obeying God is very serious. We've seen that. Well, guess what? You have all the energy you need to obey the commands that God has given you. You have all the strength and the power. It is literally the Holy Spirit of God has been put within you. And he will cause you to walk in God's ways. He will make you careful to obey the commands. Is that good news for anybody here tonight?
[00:34:34] Is that encouragement are the commandments of God, bird and some if we have the Holy Spirit in our lives. The answer is no. Has God now written his law on our hearts so that we can actually do it?
[00:34:47] That's what it's saying. That's what it's saying.
[00:34:50] And way too many of us, when it comes to obedience, we're focused on what we can't do rather than what God can do.
[00:34:58] And he's saying, hey, you need to take it seriously, you need to be personally responsible because you have unlimited power at your disposal.
[00:35:07] You have everlasting energy working in you right now.
[00:35:13] When you say I can't obey. You're not you're not talking about your own limitations.
[00:35:17] You're limiting the work that God can do. And then when it says do all things without grumbling or disputing. Well, that's a great that's a great principle. OK, that's a great command. It would be good for you not to complain about anything in your life. It's amazing how many people around here have complained over the last week about how hot it is. Have you heard this complaining?
[00:35:48] We live in one of the best climates on planet Earth. Everybody, that's why it costs so much to live here. And it gets a little bit hot. It's not Palm Springs. It's not Lake Havasu. Anybody?
[00:36:02] We don't know what Hardy is. Right. But yet we complain now that now that would be a good thing. Okay. Hey, stop complaining about the weather.
[00:36:11] Everybody stop complaining about the traffic. All right. Stop complaining about what's for dinner. And all the parents said, man.
[00:36:19] Preach. Let's bring the kids in right now. All right.
[00:36:24] Now, those are all good things that we should stop complaining about. Put it in context to all things without grumbling or disputing what are the all things he's been telling us to do?
[00:36:38] This is what it's talking about. Why are you grumbling about obeying? Why are you disputing the idea here of disputing is you're having a dialog with God and you're telling God why you're not going to do what he's telling you to do.
[00:36:55] God's saying go and do this. You're saying Yabut and he and then you're talking to God.
[00:37:01] Why look. God saved you.
[00:37:03] He gave you a new heart. He put his Holy Spirit within you. He's promised you heaven and joy at his right hand where there are pleasures forevermore. And you're sitting here and you're saying, God, thank you for saving my wretched soul. Thank you for eternal life. Thank you for sending your one and only son bite's.
[00:37:24] I really don't like how I have to do this right now in my life. That's what he's going after. You've got salvation and you want to complain about it. That's what he's saying.
[00:37:38] There are a bunch of people going to churches, all other Southern California, and they act like obedience is a bad word. They act like commands. He wants to study commands. Can we tell more stories? Can we look at more stories? Can we look at narratives? I don't want to study a list of commands. Grumbling and disputing God saved you, it gave you a new life.
[00:38:01] And we're like children, instead of living blameless and pure without blemish living out this new life. We have this pure, righteous life we have through the blood of Jesus Christ. We're like, I really have to do that.
[00:38:14] That's what we're saying. My God. Why do you have to give me this trial guy? Why did you have to give me this person to deal with God? Why did you have to have me have to do this today? I didn't want to do this today.
[00:38:26] He's saved your soul. He's sent his son. He's promised you the promised land of the new Jerusalem and you're in the middle of the wilderness saying it's hard.
[00:38:38] And I don't like what we're eating. God. So we're doing the same exact thing that the Israelites were doing. I mean, you can go read, I mean, these people were complainers. Have you ever read through the Book of numbers before? I mean, they could change. We could change the name numbers. We could call it complainers. I mean, that's what it is.
[00:38:57] There's literally there are lines in the book of numbers that I still can't believe wherever said. But then I think about some of the things I've said are things my kids have said and I start to understand. They complain that I wish we were back in Egypt because they had cucumbers in Egypt. Have you ever read that line before? All the leaks that they used to have in Egypt. We don't get those leaks anymore. I had to look up what a leak even was. Right.
[00:39:25] I mean, here they are in the wilderness where Mannagh is falling from heaven. Birds are showing up so they can eat them. Water's coming out of a rock, everybody.
[00:39:35] And they're like, oh, the cucumbers. We could just go back to Egypt. The cucumbers. I mean, it's the classic it's the classic case of where are we going? You know, backseat drive in here in the wilderness. Maybe you're going on a family vacation and you're going to hear that famous line.
[00:39:53] Are we there yet? God, are we there yet? Why am I still here having to obey? Where's my cucumber's?
[00:40:06] I mean, what? I mean, think about it. God sent his one and only son Jesus took all of the wrath that you deserved an eternal punishment. And instead, you're gonna get eternal life. What petty thing are you complaining about?
[00:40:20] What thing are you acting like it's hard that you have to do. You've given up your one and only son. You lay down your life on the cross. And yet we're the ones that are grumbling and disputing. See, we have a dad who loves us. We have a dad who adopted us.
[00:40:39] We have a dad who promises that he wants to give all good gifts to his children. If there's anything that's really going to help you in your life, that's really going to grow your faith. That's really going to bless you and your loved ones. He's not going to withhold any good thing from those who walk up, rightly from those who live as his children.
[00:40:59] And he has people he wants to shower us with blessings. And he knows what is best for us, unlike anybody else. And you and I are like children at the table saying we really got to eat this.
[00:41:13] When our father knows best. What we should be doing in our life. And the situations he's putting us through and the trials we're all going through.
[00:41:23] Point number two, you should rejoice in a father who gives good gifts. Rejoice in a father who gives good gifts. You don't have it bad as a Christian. You have it blast.
[00:41:37] And every single thing that you have that's good or perfect or true, it has come from the father of lights with whom there is no shadow of turning.
[00:41:48] He is good, will be good.
[00:41:51] His steadfast love endures forever. And he loves you.
[00:41:58] And so that's what he's referring to when he's talking about being a child here. What we should be thinking is, yeah, the Israelites were his kids and they grumbled and complained. I better make sure I don't do that myself.
[00:42:13] Joining with me in First Corinthians, Chapter 10. Let's look at this passage here together, First Corinthians, Chapter 10, please turn there with me.
[00:42:23] It's in and it's in what we refer to as the New Testament, everybody. But yet watch out because it might actually refer to the law and the prophets. First Corinthians, Chapter 10. Pick it up with me in verse six. And it's talking about what happened with Moses and the rock that was really Christ in the wilderness. Guy was not pleased with them in the wilderness because of their grumbling and disputing.
[00:42:50] And so, look, verse six. This is First Corinthians 10, verse six.
[00:42:54] Now these things took place as examples for us that we might not desire evil as they did. Do not be idolaters as some of them were, as it is written. The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.
[00:43:08] We must not indulge in sexual immorality, as some of them did.
[00:43:14] And twenty three thousand fell in a single day.
[00:43:17] We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did, and were destroyed by serpents nor verse 10, nor grumble as some of them did and were destroyed by the destroyer. Now these things happen to them, referring to the Israelites in the wilderness.
[00:43:39] These things happen to them as an example. But they were written down for our instruction on whom the end of the ages has come.
[00:43:53] Maybe you're sitting here and you're thinking, well, yeah. Sexual morality, that sounds bad. Yeah. Testing Christ. That sounds bad. Grumbling That doesn't notice how it's right there in the list.
[00:44:05] God sent his son, Jesus died. You've been saved. You got a new life. And instead of going and working out your new life, you're going to grumble and dispute with God about the things he's telling you to do. Watch out, cause some people who did that before got destroyed by the destroyer. Watch out because and and EIAs and Sapphira, they were selling their property. They were given most of the money to the church. They just lied about how much they sold it for and how much they were given. And they fell over dead. Watch out.
[00:44:41] God takes it really serious, like hopefully you do as a parent when his kids grumble against the good things that he's given them.
[00:44:50] You don't think it could happen to you? That's who it was written for, was for you. To learn from what happened to them. And here we are at the end of the ages. And the sin of grumbling is still a temptation for God's people to this very day. Do I really gotta go tell people the gospel? Do I really gotta go and serve the church? Do I really gotta get there early and do parking? People grumbling. About serving other people, about loving the lost.
[00:45:27] God is not OK.
[00:45:29] As any good father is not okay with his children complaining when he's there, giving them good things and blessings, you might want to write down Lamentations 339. I would be a good verse. Haven't seen this one at anybody's house yet. But maybe we need to break out the cross stitch, the Instagram something lamentations three thirty nine.
[00:45:50] Why should a living man complain?
[00:45:54] A man about the punishment of his sense. Why should a living man complain? Hey, did you sin against God?
[00:46:04] Let me ask you guys here a question. Have you sinned against God? What does it say the wages of your sin is? What? Are you still alive?
[00:46:12] And you're complaining about it? You didn't get what you deserved. You didn't get the punishment for your sins. That could have happened. You could have been struck dead right in the moment that you sinned against God. But his mercy is new to you every morning. His faithfulness has never left your side. And here you are complaining about what God's got going on in your life or what God's telling you to do through his word.
[00:46:37] You're supposed to hold fast to the word of life. Still, we live in we live in such a spoiled and privileged part of the world. And yet it is known for its discontent and its complaining. I mean, I know students here at the church and you know what students do. They complain about their teachers. I know teachers here at the church.
[00:46:59] You know what the teachers do? They complain about their students. We live in okole culture where people just complain about each other. Anybody got a boss?
[00:47:08] People complaining about their bosses. Guess what the bosses are doing? Complain and about their employees. When we live in a whole world where everybody's complaining and it's not rocket science.
[00:47:19] If you go to school, your teacher is going to expect you to do homework. If you go to work, your boss is going to expect you to do. Work makes sense to everybody, right? And you how many people are sitting in cubicles complaining? How many people are sitting at their desk? Oh, we have to do this assignment. We have to actually learn staff. Who is this teacher? Think they are? You ever heard that one before? Kimberly my boss expects me to get there on time and do this job. When you watch. Just go to work and act like you're expecting to do work. Just go to school and act like you're there to do what the teacher tells you and you will shine. You will shine in the darkness. People be like, what's wrong with this person? Oh, look at goody two shoes over there. They do their homework. Anybody else ever hear that one grown up? Yikes. Oh, what grade did you get? Oh, look what grade he got. A hundred. A teacher's pet. Right.
[00:48:20] You will shine just anybody here who lives like they're happy to do what God's told them to do. You will stand out so much. It will be like you're holding up the word of life for everybody around, you see.
[00:48:33] That's what it says.
[00:48:35] There should be people who want and have energy to actually do what God tells them. We're supposed to be those people. Were the children of God. That's how we're supposed to live. And then Liquidy says here the verse 17.
[00:48:52] He says, even if I am to be poured out as a drink offering can no doubt see again here, you've got to just work with me here on my rant because where does it talk about drink offerings? Like Leviticus is a great place for drink offerings. Numbers really has a lot of drink offerings. Then it says upon the sacrificial offering of your faith.
[00:49:15] Now, who's ever heard before that the sacrifices of the Old Testament, they're obsolete. Now, we don't have to do them. So we don't need to read those chapters. So we don't need to know what's going on there. Why, if that's true? Is this guy using drink offerings and sacrifices to describe us if we're not supposed to know about him?
[00:49:35] So you can't even understand the way that Paul thinks about the Christian life unless you understand what a sacrifice is that we're killing an animal in the shedding of blood and the death of the animal is what we're seeing as the symbol of the atonement for sin. And then while the animal is being sacrificed and being burnt there on the altar, we're going to take some wine and we're gonna throw it on the animal as a drink offering to say, here's my offering to you, God, I'm giving my life up to you. That's the analogy. And if you're dissing the Old Testament and never paying attention, you won't even understand what Paul's saying to this church about how he's saying, hey, you guys are the sacrifice.
[00:50:16] I'm just gonna get poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice of your faith.
[00:50:23] Hey, guys, let me tell you, there's a lot of work you got to do as a Christian.
[00:50:28] Yeah, you got to shine. And then in the dark world, you got to stand out as a lie. You got to really do what God says. Let me tell you why it's worth it, guys. Let me tell you, I'm glad. And I rejoice with you. And why you should be glad and rejoice with me. Because given our life away to Jesus as a sacrifice is worth it, everybody.
[00:50:47] It actually matters if you live this way.
[00:50:51] Hey, if if my life is just getting poured out on top of your life, I rejoice that my life will matter for something in eternity. That's what Paulson. Doing what God tells us to do is the only thing that we can do in this life that will actually echo after we are dead. Most people on planet Earth are wasting their lives doing things that will not matter once they are dead.
[00:51:18] And he said, we can give our lives. We can pour out our lives. We can offer ourselves to God. No longer living for ourselves, but living for him as living sacrifice as we can give ourselves to God. And if I give my life away and you're the sacrifice and I'm just a little drink offering splashed on top of your sacrifice. If my life makes a difference in your life, it'll be worth it. Paul says.
[00:51:46] And when I get to the presence of God, I will know that I didn't run in vain. I didn't labor in vain. I actually did what God wanted me to do in this life. And what I did out of obedience to God made an impact on other people. And therefore, it will matter in eternity.
[00:52:04] And he says it because of that, because I now can do something with my life that actually matters and makes a difference in other people because of that. I will rejoice.
[00:52:13] And you guys should rejoice. Point number three, let's get it down like this. Rejoice together in a life that matters. Rejoice together in a life that matters. We now have purpose.
[00:52:27] We now have a reason to wake up in the morning. Every day that you wake up, there are souls here on planet Earth that that need to be safe. There are brothers and sisters that need to be encouraged and built up.
[00:52:39] And as you obey God, as you live a life to work out your salvation, as God does his work in you and you don't grumble about it. You don't complain about it. You embrace it. You give yourself to it. You lay your life down. You pour your life out. Other people see you and it makes a difference.
[00:53:01] That's what he's saying. It's in my life. If I'm being poured out, at least I'm being poured out for you, for your faith.
[00:53:11] So I rejoice in this life that God has given me to live. And I get to rejoice with you because Paul's what matters to Paul is these people, these people that he got to preach the gospel to the people that God save, the people that even now he cares how they're living with joy.
[00:53:29] Today, even if I'm even my life, if it's being all poured out right now, like some kind of drink that's being poured out, there it goes. There it is. Gone. Just a little bit. A little bit of mis there. A little bit of hits. The sacrifice splash gone.
[00:53:44] If that's me, for your faith is being encouraged. Your life is now for Christ. Then I rejoice. I mean, there's so much joy here in versus 17 and a.. He's like saying, I have joy. We should have joy together. You should have joy. We should have joy together. It's like he says, joy four times there in those two verses. And in English, it's be glad and rejoice. But in the Greek, it's all the same word. I rejoice and we rejoice together. You rejoice and we rejoice together. That's what he says. It's the joy of knowing that giving my life for Jesus is worth living for. Can I get any man from anybody on this? We shouldn't be complaining. We should be rejoicing that we have salvation and the things we do now in Christ. These things will echo for all of eternity. They will matter to other people. They will put the word of life on display for other people to see. Because of the work that God's doing in us. So we should be rejoicing together that we get to live out this life of obedience, that God gives us all the energy we need to do the work, and that we have a father in heaven who loves us. So let's all stand together and then let me close us in prayer.
[00:55:07] Let's let's all stand and we'll pray together. And then after we're done praying we're not going to sing a song, we're gonna rejoice together, OK? So we're gonna have a time of greeting here at the end of the service and you're gonna tell somebody why you're rejoicing here tonight.
[00:55:22] So let me pray for you. Father in heaven, we confess to you that many times we have grumbled and we have disputed. When you have done so much good to us, when you've saved us from our sins. You're given us everything we need right now as we walk through this life. And you have promised us heaven, joy in your presence, the absence of sin. God, you have done so much for us. And even now, you are a god of everlasting energy, ready to give us everything we need to do your work. All the power. All the strength.
[00:56:00] Now we confess that we're a complaining people. We confess that oftentimes we doubt you because we focus on our own weakness. So now we ask you would really use your word to stir us up here tonight? Guy, that you would really use your word of life to work life in us. That we would work out our salvation with fear and trembling. That we would be ready to obey you as your children without blemish. Shining his lights in the world, and that we will rejoice together, that we share the salvation of Jesus Christ and we have the privilege of offering our lives as a sacrifice. God, I just pray that we would say here tonight, again, I say rejoice. And even this week. When it gets hard to obey, when the trials are real and it's tough to live for you in this world again. Let us rejoice in our salvation so far to give us a great time to encourage one another, right now we pray in Jesus name and everyone said, hey, find somebody and rejoice together.
[00:57:06] Thanks for being here, everybody.
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