The Choke to Vertical Worship

April 8th, 2021

The Choke to Vertical Worship

Pastor Don Carpenter

Worship: What’s Stopping You? / Psalm 66:18; Matthew 15:7–9; Isaiah 29:13; Psalm 32:5–6; Isaiah 59:2; Isaiah 64:7; James 4:3

When Lawrence of Arabia was in Paris with some of his Arab friends after World War I, he took them to see the sights of the city. His friends showed little interest in the Louvre, the Arch of Triumph, or Napoleon’s tomb. The thing that really interested them was the faucet in their bathtub. They spent much time turning it on and off; they thought it was wonderful. All they had to do was turn the handle and they could get all the water they wanted.

When they were leaving Paris, Lawrence found them in the bathroom with wrenches, trying to get the faucet off so they could take it with them. You see, they said, it is very dry in Arabia. What we need are faucets. If we have them, we will have all the water we want. Lawrence had to explain to them that the effectiveness of the faucet depended on the water system to which it was attached.

Our study of worship reminds us that the effectiveness of all that we do in the church is not to be found in outward activity or service, but in the One who stands behind it.

2021 is the year of Worship for Evangelical Baptist Church. We are going to study it, understand it, practice it, and develop it within our church culture and church body. On New Year’s Eve we were introduced to the concept of worship as described by our Savior.

John 4:23 KJV

But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

We saw that there are two essential elements to true and effective, intimate worship. We must worship in spirit, that is emotional passion, and in truth… both doctrinal truth and genuine expression.  

Since that introduction we have learned about the role of singing in the life of a believer. We have also started to learn about intimate prayer. We saw that Jesus gave us a very basic model of how to pray in what we know as “The Lord’s Prayer”.

Worship goes two ways, vertical and horizontal. Our vertical worship goes up to God and receives input from God down to us. On the horizontal level, when we worship God vertically, we are ministering to our brothers and sisters within the congregation – horizontally.

Tonight as we continue to learn about worship in 2021 we are launching a series called “Worship: What’s Stopping You?”

Since true worship is done in spirit and in truth, there are things that can choke the passion and the truth of worship and cause the exercise to be empty. Worship is largely relational. It feeds on our relationship to God (vertical) and on our relationship to each other in brotherly love ( horizontal).

This week and next we will take a journey through scriptures and discover what could choke out genuine spiritual worship. Tonight we will focus on things that will cause a Vertical Choke to Worship.

Unresolved Sin

Creates a Distance Between Us and God

Isaiah 59:2 KJV

But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, And your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

Creates a Barrier to Answered Prayer

Psalm 66:18 KJV

If I regard iniquity in my heart, The Lord will not hear me:

A Handbook on the Book of Psalms Psalm 66:18–19

In verse 18 the Hebrew reads “If I had seen iniquity in my heart,” by which the psalmist means that if he had been aware of his sin yet done nothing about it

Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words To See, Perceive

ra?ah (?????, 7200), “to see, observe, perceive, get acquainted with, gain understanding, examine, look after (see to), choose, discover.” This verb occurs only in Moabite and all periods of Hebrew. It appears in the Bible about 1,300 times.

Basically ra?ah connotes seeing with one’s eyes: Isaac’s “eyes were dim, so that he could not see” (Gen. 27:1). This is its meaning in Gen. 1:4, its first biblical appearance. The word can be used in the sense of seeing only what is obvious:

Proverbs 28:9 KJV

He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, Even his prayer shall be abomination.

Hypocrisy – Worship For Show

Isaiah 29:13 KJV

Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, And with their lips do honour me, But have removed their heart far from me, And their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:

A Handbook on Isaiah, Volumes 1 & 2 29:13

And their fear of me is a commandment of men learned by rote: The Hebrew noun rendered fear can refer to physical fear, but here it refers to reverence or awe for God, or even worship. For their fear of me, NJB and NAB have “their reverence for me,” while GNB and REB say “Their religion.” It may also be rendered “when they worship me.” Their worship is described first as a commandment of men, which means their religious leaders, not God, have required them to do it. It is also learned by rote. The English expression “to learn by rote” means to memorize something through repetition, without necessarily understanding it fully. The Hebrew text is simply “a learned thing.” NJB has “a lesson memorised,” and NAB says “routine observance.” GNB renders this whole line well with “Their religion is nothing but human rules and traditions, which they have simply memorized.”

Isaiah, Volume 1 Chapter 29

And their fear toward me. The worship of God is often represented as fear (Job 28:28; Ps. 19:9; 34:11; Prov. 1:7).

Is taught by the precept of men. That is, their views, instead of having been derived from the Scriptures, were drawn from the doctrines of men. Our Saviour referred to this passage, and applied it to the hypocrites of his own time (Matt. 15:8, 9). The latter part of it is, however, not quoted literally from the Hebrew, nor from the LXX., but retains the sense: ‘But in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.’ He quoted it as strikingly descriptive of the people when he lived, not as saying that Isaiah referred directly to his times.

Elevate Tradition Over Scripture

Matthew 15:7–9 KJV

Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, 

This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. 

But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

 • Making Up Extra biblical rules of worship.

 • Disregarding Biblical precedent and practice because of perceived cultural norms.

1 Timothy 2:8 KJV

I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.

Selfishness

James 4:3 KJV

Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

Apathy/ Laziness

Isaiah 64:7 KJV

And there is none that calleth upon thy name, That stirreth up himself to take hold of thee: For thou hast hid thy face from us, And hast consumed us, because of our iniquities.

That stirreth up himself. The word here used (??????????) refers to the effort which is requisite to rouse one’s self when oppressed by a spirit of heavy slumber; and the idea here is, that the nation was sunk in spiritual torpor, and that the same effort was needful to excite it which was requisite to rouse one who had sunk down to deep sleep. How aptly this describes the state of a sinful world! How much disposed is that world to give itself to spiritual slumber! How indisposed to rouse itself to call upon God! No man rises to God without effort; and unless men make an effort for this, they fall into the stupidity of sin, just as certainly as a drowsy man sinks back into deep sleep.

Albert Barnes, Notes on the Old Testament: Isaiah, vol. 2 (London: Blackie & Son, 1851), 404–405.

1 Corinthians 15:34 KJV

Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.

I think George Reeves was the first actor to be Superman on TV.

Back in the 50’s, TV actors were not quite as “elite” as some seem to be now. They would throw out the first pitch at a Los Angeles little league game. They would fire the starting pistol for a soap box derby race in Oklahoma City. They would be at the dedication of a statue in a city park in Boise. People could meet them, shake their hand, and, of course, get an autograph.

George Reeves was popular for guest appearances, but his fame included risks. Kids might kick him in the shins or throw rocks to find out if he was the “real” Superman or a “pretend” Superman, the same way kids pull on Santa beards to find out if they are real. It seemed like every time he appeared in public as Superman, someone wanted to put him to the test.

In 1953, he may have faced real-life danger appearing at a department store opening. A young fan, who wanted to see bullets bounce off Superman’s chest, brought his dad’s Army Colt, his dad’s loaded… .45 caliber… Army Colt. Reeves talked him into putting it down. He told the boy that Superman could survive the shot without being hurt, but “when bullets bounce off my chest, they might hurt you and others around here.”

He continued to make public appearances, but never again in the Superman costume.

I said, “he may have faced real-life danger.” I tried to find more details about the incident. I could not find a first hand account, a specific date, or a department store name. Apparently, neither can anyone else.

Some believe Reeves made up the story so he would not have to wear the costume when he appeared in public. It’s understandable. I would not want kids kicking me in the shins or throwing rocks every time I showed up. That story was the only way he could stop the agents and producers from scheduling Superman appearances.

When he appeared in public, children wanted to know. “Is he real or is he pretend?”

God doesn’t have to kick us in the shins or throw rocks at us to know if our devotion is real or pretend. When God sent Samuel to anoint the next king, he was impressed with some of Jesse’s sons, but God said, “Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” He still does.

God is looking for us to worship Him in spirit and in truth. Tonight we have identified some barriers to true vertical worship. Let us identify and confess unresolved sin, hypocrisy, the elevation of tradition over scripture, selfishness and apathy. These are the things that can create a vertical choke to worship.

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 7:20 PM April 8, 2021.

Love That Conquered Death

April 8th, 2021

Love That Conquered Death

Pastor Don Carpenter

***This is Love / 1 Corinthians 15:20–26

 One of the great preachers of the Puritan era captured the real meaning of the resurrection in his sermon entitled, “The Death of Death in the Death of Christ.” The title is more than a play on words. It contains profound truth.

—Gospel Herald

Nothing demonstrates the Love God has for us more than the Easter story.  

Romans 5:8 KJV

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

Last week we saw that this great love compelled Jesus to be nailed on the cross, buried, and raise from the grave is a love that forgives sins. Not only did resurrection facilitate the applying of Christ’s Blood on the Heavenly Mercy Seat, it also broke the grip of death and all of its ramifications. For a few minutes let us consider the love demonstrated that conquered death.

Love Conquered The Sentence of Death.

Sin Brings Death

Romans 3:23 KJV

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Romans 6:23 KJV

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Romans 5:12 KJV

Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

John 3:18 KJV

He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

John 3:36 KJV

He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

The Second Death Awaits The Condemned

Revelation 20:12–14 KJV

And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. 

And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 

And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

Revelation 21:8 KJV

But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

Through Jesus We Overcome the Sentence of the Second Death

Revelation 2:11 KJV

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.

1 John 5:4–5 KJV

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. 

Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

Revelation 20:6 KJV

Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.

Love Conquers the Sting of Death

Christ’s Resurrection Gives Us Hope

1 Corinthians 15:20–22 KJV

But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 

For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. 

For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.

Christ’s Resurrection Proves the Enemy of Death is Defeated.

1 Corinthians 15:23–26 KJV

But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 

Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. 

For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 

The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.

Christ’s Resurrection Takes The Stinger or Hurt Out of Death.

1 Corinthians 15:55–57 KJV

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? 

The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. 

But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament based on Semantic Domains 20.69 ???????, ??

20.69 ???????c, ?? n: (a figurative extension of meaning of ???????a ‘sting,’ 8.45) the power or ability to kill or destroy—‘power to kill, power to destroy.

The Resurrection Heals the Hurt of Death

Revelation 21:3–6 KJV

And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. 

And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. 

And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.

Love Conquers the Corruption of Death.

Not Revived, but Resurrected to Die No More

Acts 13:32–37 KJV

And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers, 

God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee. 

And as concerning that he raised him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption, he said on this wise, I will give you the sure mercies of David. 

Wherefore he saith also in another psalm, Thou shalt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. 

For David, after he had served his own generation by the will of God, fell on sleep, and was laid unto his fathers, and saw corruption: 

But he, whom God raised again, saw no corruption.

Raised Incorruptible

1 Corinthians 15:51–54 KJV

Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 

In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 

For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 

So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.

1 John 3:1–2 KJV

Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. 

Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.

1 Thessalonians 4:13–18 KJV

But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 

For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 

For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 

For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 

Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 

Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

Raised to New Life and Abundant Love

Joni Eareckson Tada, a quadriplegic who was paralyzed in a diving accident as a teenager, talks about her wedding day. She says, “I felt awkward as my girlfriends strained to shift my paralyzed body into a cumbersome wedding gown. No amount of corseting and binding my body gave me a perfect shape. The dress just didn’t fit well. Then, as I was wheeling into the church, I glanced down and noticed that I’d accidentally run over the hem of my dress, leaving a greasy tire mark. My paralyzed hands couldn’t hold the bouquet of daisies that lay off-center on my lap. And my chair, though decorated for the wedding, was still a big, clunky gray machine with belts, gears, and ball bearings. I certainly didn’t feel like the picture-perfect bride in a bridal magazine. I inched my chair closer to the last pew to catch a glimpse of Ken in front. There he was, standing tall and stately in his formal attire. I saw him looking for me, craning his neck to look up the aisle. My face flushed, and I suddenly couldn’t wait to be with him. I had seen my beloved. The love in Ken’s face had washed away all my feelings of unworthiness. I was his pure and perfect bride. How easy it is for us to think that we’re utterly unlovely — especially to someone as lovely as Christ. But he loves us with the bright eyes of a Bridegroom’s love and cannot wait for the day we are united with him forever.”

And we, unattractive, frightened, paralyzed and imperfect, yet wild with hope, come to the wedding feast of the Lamb. We feel inadequate and unworthy, yet our eyes are fixed on Christ. We are overwhelmed with emotion as we know that we are loved and accepted just as we are, and that the wedding will bring about a transformation. The blood and water that flowed from his side has released us from our bondage, healed our brokenness and cleansed us from our sin. We become the Bride of Christ, not just in theory or potentially, but in reality. And there, together with him and all the redeemed, we will taste the new wine of the kingdom.

The writer of Revelation proclaimed:

Revelation 21:2–5 KJV

And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 

And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. 

And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.

Conclusion:

The Easter Story is a Love Story!

Romans 5:8 KJV

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

You are loved so much Christ died and rose again to forgive your sins and to conquer death. We no longer need to fear the undertaker, and we look for the Upper- Taker… this is Love that Conquered Death.

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 11:16 AM April 8, 2021.

Armed to the Teeth with a Sling Shot!

April 6th, 2021

Armed To The Teeth

Pastor Don Carpenter

2021 Bible Reading Challenge

Have you ever felt out gunned by the forces of darkness? Have you walked into a situation feeling like you are charging Hell with a squirt gun or perhaps facing a 9 foot tall soldier with nothing but a sling shot and 5 stones? Fear is a crippling force that causes us to underestimate the power of the weapons in our possession. Believers often shrink away from the victory for which we have been equipped and prepared because our trust is in the physical tools and skills we possess rather than the God that enables us and empowers us to use those tools.

The name of the message tonight comes from an ancient idiom. The phrase originated in the 14th century and referred to knights who wore head to foot armour. However, it became popular in the mid 1800s, and was used for weapons only at first. Now it is also used figuratively.

According to one another thought the idiom was actually generated in Port Jamaica in 1600’s and was associated with the pirates of that time. They were supposed to be armed with maximum weapons to fight with their rivals. To be well equipped they also kept a small knife in their teeth which helps them during the fighting.

Source: theidioms.com

For the next few minutes let us examine how in the world David could have the confidence to face Goliath. Let us discover together how this 17 year old shepherd boy could face a 9 foot tall warrior unafraid. How could David stride out into battle when everyone else ran? How could David face Goliath like this shepherd boy was armed to the teeth?

Personal Armor

Familiar Armor

1 Samuel 17:32–37 KJV

And David said to Saul, Let no man’s heart fail because of him; thy servant will go and fight with this Philistine. 

And Saul said to David, Thou art not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him: for thou art but a youth, and he a man of war from his youth. 

And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock: 

And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him. 

Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God. 

David said moreover, The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. And Saul said unto David, Go, and the LORD be with thee.

Psalm 18:16–17 KJV

He sent from above, he took me, He drew me out of many waters. 

He delivered me from my strong enemy, And from them which hated me: for they were too strong for me.

Psalm 63:7 KJV

Because thou hast been my help, Therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.

Psalm 138:3 KJV

In the day when I cried thou answeredst me, And strengthenedst me with strength in my soul.

Not someone else’s armor

1 Samuel 17:38–39 KJV

And Saul armed David with his armour, and he put an helmet of brass upon his head; also he armed him with a coat of mail. 

And David girded his sword upon his armour, and he assayed to go; for he had not proved it. And David said unto Saul, I cannot go with these; for I have not proved them. And David put them off him.

Hosea 1:7 KJV

But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the LORD their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen.

Zechariah 4:6 KJV

Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, Saith the LORD of hosts.

Prepared Armor

1 Samuel 17:40 KJV

And he took his staff in his hand, and chose him five smooth stones out of the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag which he had, even in a scrip; and his sling was in his hand: and he drew near to the Philistine.

God can use anything as a weapon when He empowers the one that wields it.

 • The Shepherd’s staff – that protected from wolves and wrangled wandering sheep.

 • Smooth stones – God had been preparing those rocks, smoothing out the rough edges for years just for this moment.

 • Sling – the weapon he knew

Judges 3:31 KJV

And after him was Shamgar the son of Anath, which slew of the Philistines six hundred men with an ox goad: and he also delivered Israel.

Judges 15:15–16 KJV

And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith. 

And Samson said, With the jawbone of an ass, heaps upon heaps, With the jaw of an ass have I slain a thousand men.

God’s Enemies will make fun of your faith and your weapon.

1 Samuel 17:41–44 KJV

And the Philistine came on and drew near unto David; and the man that bare the shield went before him. 

And when the Philistine looked about, and saw David, he disdained him: for he was but a youth, and ruddy, and of a fair countenance. 

And the Philistine said unto David, Am I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves? And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. 

And the Philistine said to David, Come to me, and I will give thy flesh unto the fowls of the air, and to the beasts of the field.

Powered Armor

 • Power in the Name of the Lord

1 Samuel 17:45 KJV

Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.

 • The Lord will deliver

1 Samuel 17:46 KJV

This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.

 • I will cut off your head

 • I don’t need a sword to do it

 • Everyone will know the Battle is the Lord’s!

1 Samuel 17:47–50 KJV

And all this assembly shall know that the LORD saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the LORD’s, and he will give you into our hands. 

And it came to pass, when the Philistine arose, and came and drew nigh to meet David, that David hasted, and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. 

And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang it, and smote the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth. 

So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him; but there was no sword in the hand of David.

Death was handled differently in the ancient world. An archaeologist was digging in the Negev Desert in Israel and came upon a casket containing a mummy. After examining it, he called the curator of a prestigious natural history museum.

“I’ve just discovered a 3,000 year old mummy of a man who died of heart failure!” the excited scientist exclaimed.

To which the curator replied, “Bring him in. We’ll check it out.”

A week later, the amazed curator called the archaeologist. “You were right about the mummy’s age and cause of death. How in the world did you know?”

“Easy. There was a piece of paper in his hand that said, ‘10,000 Shekels on Goliath’.”

The moral of the story: Don’t bet on Goliath and his huge broadsword when God has send David armed to the teeth with a sling and 5 stones.

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 5:11 PM April 6, 2021.

This is Love That Forgives Sin

April 2nd, 2021

This is Love That Forgives Sin

Pastor Don Carpenter

***This is Love / Romans 5:6–8

Easter Message

Love is one of the most powerful emotions we have. The actress Joan Crawford once said “Love is a fire but whether it warms your heart or burns your house down, you can never tell!” Love can motivate, give pleasure, hurt even destroy. It can make us do bold, even stupid things. During the 17th century, Oliver Cromwell, sentenced a soldier to be shot for his crimes. The execution was to take place at the ringing of the evening curfew bell. However, the bell did not sound. The soldier’s fiancé had climbed into the belfry and clung to the great clapper of the bell to prevent it from striking. When she was summoned by Cromwell to account for her actions, she wept as she showed him her bruised and bleeding hands. Cromwell’s heart was touched and he said, “Your lover shall live because of your sacrifice. Curfew shall not ring tonight!”

Romans 5:6–8 KJV

For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 

For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. 

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

Today we celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Before there could be a Resurrection, there had to be a Crucifixion. Before Easter Sunday there had to be a Good Friday. The story comes as a package deal. The Gospel includes three essential elements.

1 Corinthians 15:3–4 KJV

For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 

And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

It was not fate that sent Jesus to the Cross. It was not Pilate, Judas, the Jews or the Romans that sent Jesus to the Cross. It was our sin, our hopelessness, and His Great Love that sent Jesus to the Cross. This is love that forgives sins!

The Story of Love – The Gospel

1 Corinthians 15:1–4 KJV

Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 

By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 

For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 

And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

Jesus died for our sins – because we are sinners.

Jesus was buried for sins.

Jesus Rose again to complete the atonement.

 • All was according to Scriptures.

Isaiah 53:4–6 KJV

Surely he hath borne our griefs, And carried our sorrows: Yet we did esteem him stricken, Smitten of God, and afflicted. 

But he was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: The chastisement of our peace was upon him; And with his stripes we are healed. 

All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned every one to his own way; And the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

The Object of Love – Hopeless Sinners

Romans 5:6–8 KJV

For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 

For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. 

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

 • Without Strength – could not save ourselves

Isaiah 64:6 KJV

But we are all as an unclean thing, And all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; And we all do fade as a leaf; And our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

Romans 3:20 KJV

Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

James 2:10–11 KJV

For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. 

For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law.

 • Without an Advocate – no other person could take our place

Hebrews 7:26–27 KJV

For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; 

Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.

 • We became the object of his demonstrated love.

Revelation 1:5 KJV

And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,

John 3:16 KJV

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

1 Timothy 1:15 KJV

This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.

The Power of Love – The Resurrection

1 Corinthians 15:14–17 KJV

And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. 

Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. 

For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: 

And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.

Jesus had to be pure in order to act as a High Priest – Mary was told not to touch Jesus

John 20:11–17 KJV

But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre, 

And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. 

And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him. 

And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. 

Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. 

Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. 

Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

Jesus finished that act and eight days later Jesus told men to go ahead and touch Him

John 20:26–28 KJV

And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. 

Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. 

And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.

The Blood had been applied on the Mercy seat in Heaven. – Jesus Had to Rise Again in order to act as our High Priest and Apply His Blood for Us

Hebrews 9:11–14 KJV

But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; 

Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. 

For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: 

How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

 • There is a Mercy Seat in Heaven

 • Jesus entered Heaven with His own blood

 • Redemption was obtained when the Blood was applied

 • The Blood stains the mercy seat, purging you from dead works

Edith Burns was a wonderful Christian who lived in San Antonio, Texas. She was the patient of a doctor by the name of Will Phillips. Dr. Phillips was a gentle doctor who saw patients as people. His favorite patient was Edith Burns. One morning he went to his office with a heavy heart and it was because of Edith Burns.

When he walked into that waiting room, there sat Edith with her big black Bible in her lap earnestly talking to a young mother sitting beside her.

Edith Burns had a habit of introducing herself in this way: “Hello, my name is Edith Burns. Do you believe in Easter?” Then she would explain the meaning of Easter, and many times people would be saved. Dr. Phillips walked into that office and there he saw the head nurse, Beverly. Beverly had first met Edith when she was taking her blood pressure. Edith began by saying, “My name is Edith Burns. Do you believe in Easter?” Beverly said, “Why yes I do.” Edith said, “Well, what do you believe about Easter?” Beverly said, “Well, it’s all about egg hunts, going to church, and dressing up.” Edith kept pressing her about the real meaning of Easter, and finally led her to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

Dr. Phillips said, “Beverly, don’t call Edith into the office quite yet. I believe there is another delivery taking place in the waiting room.”

After being called back in the doctor’s office, Edith sat down and when she took a look at the doctor she said, “Dr. Will, why are you so sad? Are you reading your Bible? Are you praying?” Dr. Phillips said gently, “Edith, I’m the doctor and you’re the patient.” With a heavy heart he said, “Your lab report came back and it says you have cancer, and Edith, you’re not going to live very long.” Edith said, “Why Will Phillips, shame on you. Why are you so sad? Do you think God makes mistakes? You have just told me I’m going to see my precious Lord Jesus, my husband, and my friends. You have just told me that I am going to celebrate Easter forever, and here you are having difficulty giving me my ticket!” Dr. Phillips thought to himself, “What a magnificent woman this Edith Burns is!”

Edith continued coming to Dr. Phillips. Christmas came and the office was closed through January 3rd. On the day the office opened, Edith did not show up. Later that afternoon, Edith called Dr. Phillips and said she would have to be moving her story to the hospital and said, “Will, I’m very near home, so would you make sure that they put women in here next to me in my room who need to know about Easter.”

Well, they did just that and women began to come in and share that room with Edith. Many women were saved. Everybody on that floor from staff to patients were so excited about Edith, that they started calling her Edith Easter; that is everyone except Phyllis Cross, the head nurse. Phyllis made it plain that she wanted nothing to do with Edith because she was a “religious nut”. She had been a nurse in an army hospital. She had seen it all and heard it all. She was the original G.I. Jane. She had been married three times, she was hard, cold, and did everything by the book.

One morning the two nurses who were to attend to Edith were sick. Edith had the flu and Phyllis Cross had to go in and give her a shot. When she walked in, Edith had a big smile on her face and said, “Phyllis, God loves you and I love you, and I have been praying for you.” Phyllis Cross said, “Well, you can quit praying for me, it won’t work. I’m not interested.” Edith said, “Well, I will pray and I have asked God not to let me go home until you come into the family.” Phyllis Cross said, “Then you will never die because that will never happen,” and curtly walked out of the room.

Every day Phyllis Cross would walk into the room and Edith would say, “God loves you Phyllis and I love you, and I’m praying for you.” One day Phyllis Cross said she was literally drawn to Edith’s room like a magnet would draw iron. She sat down on the bed and Edith said, “I’m so glad you have come, because God told me that today is your special day.” Phyllis Cross said, “Edith, you have asked everybody here the question, ‘Do you believe in Easter?’ but you have never asked me.” Edith said, “Phyllis, I wanted to many times, but God told me to wait until you asked, and now that you have asked…”

Edith Burns took her Bible and shared with Phyllis Cross the Easter Story of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Edith said, “Phyllis, do you believe in Easter? Do you believe that Jesus Christ is alive and that He wants to live in your heart?” Phyllis Cross said, “Oh I want to believe that with all of my heart, and I do want Jesus in my life.” Right there, Phyllis Cross prayed and invited Jesus Christ into her heart. For the first time Phyllis Cross did not walk out of a hospital room, she was carried out on the wings of angels.

Two days later, Phyllis Cross came in and Edith said, “Do you know what day it is?” Phyllis Cross said, “Why Edith, it’s Good Friday.” Edith said, “Oh, no, for you every day is Easter. Happy Easter Phyllis!” Two days later, on Easter Sunday, Phyllis Cross came into work, did some of her duties and then went down to the flower shop and got some Easter lilies ecause she wanted to go up to see Edith and give her some Easter lilies and wish her a Happy Easter. When she walked into Edith’s room, Edith was in bed. That big black Bible was on her lap. Her hands were in that Bible. There was a sweet smile on her face.

When Phyllis Cross went to pick up Edith’s hand, she realized Edith was dead. Her left hand was on 

John 14:1 KJV

Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.

 Her right hand was on 

Revelation 21:4 KJV

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

Phyllis Cross took one look at that dead body, and then lifted her face toward heaven, and with tears streaming down here cheeks, said, “Happy Easter, Edith – Happy Easter!” Phyllis Cross left Edith’s body, walked out of the room, and over to a table where two student nurses were sitting. She said, “My name is Phyllis Cross. Do you believe in Easter?”

This is Love – The Forgiveness of Sins

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 2:57 PM April 2, 2021.

Good Friday Service 7:00 PM

March 29th, 2021

Join us for some passionate worship and soul stirring meditation from God’s Word about the greatest gift ever given, God’s Only Son. Invite your friends and family to revisit the greatest act of love ever demonstrated to man.

Tomorrow is the last day for non perishable food donations.

March 27th, 2021

Sunday March 28 is the last day we will be collecting for Friendly Hands Food Bank

Join Us For Palm Sunday Worship!

March 27th, 2021

March 28, 2021 is Palm Sunday and we are ready to celebrate King Jesus! Join us at 11:00 for Singing, Testimonies, and Soul Stirring Preaching. Spring is a season of new life! It is time to worship God together in person.

A Slippery Slope

March 23rd, 2021

A Slippery Slope

Pastor Don Carpenter

2021 Bible Reading Challenge / Judges 3:5–7

A hunter went out into the forest to shoot a bear. With winter fast approaching he planned to make a warm coat out of the bearskin. Soon he saw a bear coming toward him, he raised his gun and took aim.

“Wait,” said the bear, “why do you want to shoot me?”

The hunter replied: “Because I am cold.”

The bear replied “But I am hungry, so maybe we can reach an agreement.”

In the end, the hunter was well enveloped with the bear’s fur, and the bear had eaten his dinner.

The point: Disobedience (even partial) is sin, and we will always lose out when we try to compromise with sin! It will consume us in the end.

___

This week, in our 2021 Bible Reading challenge, we have been reading about the cyclical fall, judgement, repentance, and deliverance of the Children of Israel. It is easy for us to sit back and wonder how a people could be so thick as to turn from God so quickly. But the reality is it only takes a generation to completely change directions. Tonight we are going to look at three signs that one is on the Slippery Slope of Wickedness.

Become Comfortable With Carnality.

Judges 3:5 KJV

And the children of Israel dwelt among the Canaanites, Hittites, and Amorites, and Perizzites, and Hivites, and Jebusites:

Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words To Dwell

yashab (??????, 3427), “to dwell, sit, abide, inhabit, remain.”

Starts By Stopping the Good

Deuteronomy 6:4–9 KJV

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: 

And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. 

And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: 

And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. 

And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. 

And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.

Continues With Being Fascinated With Sin

Genesis 13:12 KJV

Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom.

Proverbs 23:17 KJV

Let not thine heart envy sinners: But be thou in the fear of the LORD all the day long.

Completes With Comfort

Psalm 1:1 KJV

Blessed is the man That walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor standeth in the way of sinners, Nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.

walk, stand, and sit. This verbal progression depicts a regression from moving—to stationary—to sitting. Perhaps the idea is that sin is a temptation that one first tries out, later becomes accustomed to, and finally becomes a habit or lifestyle. Many have noted that the verbs walk, stand, and sit also call to mind the positive commandment in Deut. 6:4–9 that the person of faith is to keep the commandments of God in mind while at home and away, while coming and going. 

Become Comfortable With Compromise

Judges 3:6 KJV

And they took their daughters to be their wives, and gave their daughters to their sons, and served their gods.

Genesis 6:4–6 KJV

There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. 

And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. 

And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

Exodus 34:16 KJV

And thou take of their daughters unto thy sons, and their daughters go a whoring after their gods, and make thy sons go a whoring after their gods.

Deuteronomy 7:3–4 KJV

Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son. 

For they will turn away thy son from following me, that they may serve other gods: so will the anger of the LORD be kindled against you, and destroy thee suddenly.

2 Corinthians 6:14–17 KJV

Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? 

And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? 

And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,

Become Comfortable With Corruption

Judges 3:7 KJV

And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and forgat the LORD their God, and served Baalim and the groves.

 • Did evil

 • Forgot God

 • Served Baalim

When we compromise with the world we lose our fellowship with God. A former Dean of St Paul’s, W R Inge, famously observed that any church that enters into a marriage with the spirit of the age “will soon find itself a widow in the next”.

How in the world does a people go from worshipping God to sacrificing to idols in one generation? How can churches that once preached the Gospel now reject the authority of Scripture? It happens when we allow ourselves to become comfortable, first with carnality, then with compromise and finally with corruption. That it the Slippery Slope.

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 7:06 PM March 23, 2021.

Ask, Seek, Knock

March 20th, 2021

Ask, Seek Knock

Pastor Don Carpenter

What Are You Looking For? / Matthew 7:7–8

Pastor Jack Kale tells the following story:

The rain forced us inside for our annual family Easter egg hunt, but we had a blast anyway. The kids started by hiding 120 eggs in the kitchen and den while the adults played cards in the dining room. Gangee, Pap-Pap, Uncle Paul, Aunt Kathryn, my beautiful wife, and I grabbed our baskets and waited for the count. Three, two, one, go! The women dashed into the kitchen while the men opted for the den. I found my first egg hiding in the kleenex box. I heard the giggles of the women as they fought over who found whichever egg first. Sandra won with 29. I came in second with 25. I forget how the rest fell out.

Then it was our turn. We ordered the kids to their rooms and began to hide our eggs. Some yellow ones went in the matching flower bouquet on the the counter and among the lemons by the hearth. The white one replaced a light bulb in a lamp. We unzipped couch pillows and stuffed them inside. We hid green ones in the houseplants and I stuffed a blue one down a rolled up blue yoga mat. Hiding Easter eggs will bring out your devious side, but it sure is fun.

My favorite part was watching the kids find the hard ones. I think they felt the same way watching us. “They found the one in the fireplace!” they would shout. We cheered “You’re getting colder…. Colder…warmer… you’re burning up!” It was such a blast to watch their excitement as the found the difficult ones. We hid and we found. It was awesome.

Deep in the human soul lives a bloodhound who loves the search. It’s what drives us to study more deeply and ask more intently. It forces us to consider what is right, noble, and true. It begs us for philosophical walks into what matters in life. Its why a three year old asks why only to follow up with another “why” when you have answered the question. It’s why we read whodunits and what has made google so valuable. Its why we love a good Easter egg hunt.

Yet, the Easter egg hunt has reminded me of the joy of celebrating other’s discoveries. Watching others find their purpose and passion is really rewarding. Watching a child learn to ride a bike is just as powerful as learning yourself. In life we often walk with folks as they find their own answers to the tough questions that living throws our way. It’s easy to celebrate with others when they find the missing puzzle pieces of life. Finding life’s truth together can build relationships and bring clarity to each of us.

Just like Easter eggs, truth can be found in the some really difficult hiding places. Through the loss of loved ones recently, I have found the love of new friends and ones that I had forgotten. Facing financial pains in our past, our family found peace and contentment with what we had. Dealing with suicides, cancer, alzheimer’s, depressions, divorces, bankruptcies, and addictions have revealed life’s most colorful and beautiful Easter eggy truths. My experience has taught me that these eggs have been found best with those I love.

Some of us seem to be better at hiding truth than finding it, but life is really about the searching. Life has already hidden so much from plain view that we would be better served by searching. Look for the little Easter eggs that life sends your way. Thomas Moore wrote a whole book on Re-enchantment with Everyday Life as he examined the hidden truths that we can find if we simply look at life through curious eyes. Jesus said it this way: “Seek and you will find” (Matthew 7:7).

My guess is that you are looking for something right now that’s more important than your car keys or plastic eggs. You are looking for truth and relevance. You want to make a difference in the world and you want to matter. You want to scratch that itch that keeps calling you to take a risk and follow your dreams. You want to find true love. You are searching for answers to life’s tough questions. You are on a quest to find your place in this world. You are desperate for opportunities and options. You are a searcher. You are a seeker.

Today, I invite you to let that bloodhound loose in your life. Get busy looking for that silver lining in the clouds of your life. Keep questioning those easy answers that seem to satisfy everyone but you. Keep wrestling with the why’s and why not’s. Explore the corners of your soul as you figure out what makes you tick this way and why others just seem to tock. Peer through the clouds of doubt with binoculars of faith and hope. Look for the good in other people; it’s too easy to find faults. Keep looking. Keep searching and don’t give up till you’ve found all those Easter eggs that life has in store you.

___

For the next two Sunday nights we are going to ask the question, “What Are You Looking For?” Jesus gives us some encouragement about how to get things from our Loving Father. Tonight we will see that it takes some persistence and action on our part. We need to Ask, Seek, and Knock.

Matthew 7:7–8 KJV

Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: 

For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

Ask

Psalm 10:17 KJV

LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: Thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear:

John 15:7 KJV

If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.

For Deliverance

Psalm 50:15 KJV

And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.

For Forgiveness

Psalm 86:5 KJV

For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; And plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.

It Shall be Given

Matthew 21:22 KJV

And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.

Psalm 145:18–19 KJV

The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon him, To all that call upon him in truth. 

He will fulfil the desire of them that fear him: He also will hear their cry, and will save them.

There is an old story about how the University of Chicago received a million-dollar grant from the heiress of a major department store. She had been a student at Northwest. So, administrators of Northwest went to visit her and asked why she had not made such a gift to her alma mater. Her answer was simple, “The people at the University of Chicago asked. You did not.”

Seek, Then You Will Find

The Lord’s Presence

Isaiah 55:6–7 KJV

Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, Call ye upon him while he is near: 

Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts: And let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; And to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.

Jeremiah 29:13 KJV

And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 33:3 KJV

Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.

Psalm 27:8 KJV

When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.

The Lord’s Will

Matthew 6:33 KJV

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Psalm 10:4 KJV

The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.

Psalm 69:32 KJV

The humble shall see this, and be glad: And your heart shall live that seek God.

Proverbs 3:5–6 KJV

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; And lean not unto thine own understanding. 

In all thy ways acknowledge him, And he shall direct thy paths.

Knock and It Will Be Opened

Revelation 3:7 KJV

And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;

1 Corinthians 16:9 KJV

For a great door and effectual is opened unto me, and there are many adversaries.

2 Corinthians 2:12 KJV

Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ’s gospel, and a door was opened unto me of the Lord,

Colossians 4:3 KJV

Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds:

All too often we believers have access to great riches in Christ, but we have failed put in the effort to appropriate those riches. When we ask, we are to be importunate until we receive. When we seek, we need to keep looking until we find. When we knock we need to keep knocking until the right door opens.

“In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”

Ask, Seek, Knock!

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 10:39 AM March 20, 2021.

Pray Like This – Part 1

March 19th, 2021

Pray Like This – Part 1

Pastor Don Carpenter

When You Pray / Matthew 6:9–10

A woman called a pastor to come to the house to see her father. He goes to the house not knowing whether the man is Christian or not but he notices as he talks to him and the man answers back that he must be a Christian and there is a chair sitting close by. An empty chair. He asks “What’s the chair for and the man said, “Well, I’ll tell you, but I won’t tell my daughter, she’ll think I’m crazy. I’ve always had trouble praying. I knew a man in my early years who said to me, ‘All you need to do is put an empty chair in front of you and prayer is nothing more than talking to God. And why don’t you imagine God sitting in that chair and you just talk to him.'” And so he said, “I put an empty chair there and started talking to the chair as if God was there and it got so good that I just do it now hours sometime at a time and just talk to God and God talks to me and my soul is blessed by His divine grace.” And he said, “If I tell my daughter, she’ll think I’m losing my mind.”

Some months later, the man died. When the Pastor came to visit the family, he said to the daughter, “How did he die? What happened to him?” She said, “Well, the sickness just finally got him. But the strangest way we found him. When I came in, he was dead, but there’s a chair sitting beside the bed and I noticed that he had pushed himself out of the bed and put his head in the chair and died there with his head in the chair.”

___

Last week we started a three week series that looks at Jesus’ advice about prayer entitled “when You Pray”. We discovered that although prayer is not unique to Biblical Christianity, what makes Biblical Christianity different is that prayer is not merely a tool of the mind and psychology to get one in a certain meditative state; prayer is a dynamic, private, personal and intimate interaction with Almighty God.  

Biblical prayer is intimate. So when Jesus gave what is referred to as “The Lord’s Prayer”, He was not prescribing a wrote formula to memorize and recite in direct contradiction to his advice in the previous verses. He was however, giving us the building blocks of what a Biblical prayer should look like for a believer. In the next two weeks we will discover what Jesus was trying to teach when He said, “Pray Like This”.

Open Your Prayer With Humble Worship

Matthew 6:9–10 KJV

After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 

Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

Acknowledge God’s Relationship To You

King James Version Chapter 6

Our Father which art in heaven

Everyone Does Not Have That Relationship to God

John 8:44 KJV

Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

This Relationship Is Unique To Born Again Believers

John 1:12 KJV

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

Romans 8:15 KJV

For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.

Galatians 4:16 KJV

Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?

Prayer is to begin with worship. God is addressed as Our Father in heaven. Worship is the essence of all prayer. (In vv. 1–18 Jesus used the word “Father” 10 times! Only those who have true inner righteousness can address God in that way in worship.1

1 Louis A. Barbieri Jr., “Matthew,” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures, ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck, vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985), 32.

___

A little boy was standing on the banks of the Mississippi River waving and shouting at a steamboat that was going by. He was beckoning the steamboat to come to shore.

A stranger came by and said, “That’s foolish young man. The boat will never come ashore for you. The captain is too busy to notice your waving and shouting.”

Just then, the boat turned and headed for shore. The little boy grinned and said to the stranger, “The captain is my daddy.”

The captain of the universe is our Abba. He’s our daddy. He pays attention to our petitions because he loves us. The first words in the Lord’s Prayer encourages us to call him, “Father.” He is the Lord of the universe as well as our daddy, but that doesn’t mean we should take him for granted any more than we should take our dads for granted. Thank you, Father.

Acknowledge God’s Holy Name

King James Version Chapter 6

Hallowed be thy name.

hagiazo (??????, 37), “to make holy” (from hagios, “holy”), signifies to set apart for God, to sanctify, to make a person or thing the opposite of koinos, “common”; it is translated “Hallowed,” with reference to the name of God the Father in the Lord’s Prayer, Matt. 6:9; Luke 11:2. See sanctify1

1 W. E. Vine, Merrill F. Unger, and William White Jr., Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words (Nashville, TN: T. Nelson, 1996), 287.

Hallowed be thy name. The word hallowed means to render or pronounce holy. God’s name is essentially holy; and the meaning of this petition is, “Let thy name be celebrated, venerated, and esteemed as holy everywhere, and receive from all men proper honour.” It is thus the expression of a wish or desire, on the part of the worshipper, that the name of God, or that God himself, should be held everywhere in proper veneration.1

1 Albert Barnes, Notes on the New Testament: Matthew & Mark, ed. Robert Frew (London: Blackie & Son, 1884–1885), 66.

His Name Is Power

Philippians 2:9–11 KJV

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 

That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 

And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

His Name Is The Only Name For Salvation

Acts 4:10–12 KJV

Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. 

This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. 

Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Psalm 111:9 KJV

He sent redemption unto his people: He hath commanded his covenant for ever: Holy and reverend is his name.

His Name Is Jesus

Exodus 3:14 KJV

And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.

John 8:56–58 KJV

Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. 

Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? 

Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

Isaiah 9:6 KJV

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: And the government shall be upon his shoulder: And his name shall be called Wonderful, Counseller, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

Acknowledge God’s Will

Matthew 6:10 KJV

Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

For The Future 

King James Version Chapter 6

Thy kingdom come

“Thy kingdom come,” looks on to the second advent of Christ when the kingdom of God will be established in power over all this world.1

1 H. A. Ironside, Expository Notes on the Gospel of Matthew. (Neptune, NJ: Loizeaux Brothers, 1948), 64.

Revelation 20:4 KJV

And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

For Your Life

King James Version Chapter 6

Thy will be done

Tim Hansel in his book “When I Relax I feel Guilty,” writes some insights of what most people want from God.

“I would like to buy $3.00 worth of God, please. Not enough to explode my soul or disturb my sleep, but just enough to equal a cup of warm milk or a snooze in the sunshine. I don’t want enough of Him to make me love a black man or pick beets with a migrant. I want ecstasy, not transformation; I want the warmth of the womb, not a new birth. I want a pound of the Eternal in a paper sack. I would like to buy $3.00 worth of God, please.”

If we would be totally honest, the idea of transformation really scares us. That is because we know that such a radical change would be quite uncomfortable. We realize that with transformation comes a major overhaul of our lives and priorities.

(From a sermon by Scott Chambers, The Mission if You Accept it: Transformation, 2/15/2011)

Just like His will is done in Heaven.

Nehemiah 9:6 KJV

Thou, even thou, art LORD alone; thou hast made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth, and all things that are therein, the seas, and all that is therein, and thou preservest them all; and the host of heaven worshippeth thee.

Your Salvation

2 Peter 3:9 KJV

The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

John 4:34–35 KJV

Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work. 

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.

Your Sanctification

1 Thessalonians 4:3 KJV

For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:

Mark 3:35 KJV

For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.

Your Submission

Matthew 26:42 KJV

He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.

An old sailor repeatedly got lost at sea, so his friends gave him a compass and urged him to use it. The next time he went out in his boat, he followed their advice and took the compass with him. But as usual he became hopelessly confused and was unable to find land. Finally, he was once again rescued by his friends.

Disgusted and impatient with him, they asked, “Why didn’t you use that compass we gave you? You could have saved us a lot of trouble!”

The sailor responded: “I didn’t dare to! I wanted to go north, but as hard as I tried to make the needle aim in that direction, it just kept on pointing southeast.”

That old sailor was so certain he knew which way was north, that he stubbornly tried to force his own personal persuasion on his compass. As a result he was unable to benefit from the guidance it offered.

Let us make sure we do not treat God like that man treated the compass; trying to manipulate him to work our way!

Remember the Lord’s prayer is:

“Thy will be done” not “Thy will be done my way”

From a sermon by Gordon Curley, Beware of Detours! 11/18/2010

We have a lot to learn about prayer, this personal, intimate communication between the Father and His children. This morning we have discovered that we need to take the time to humbly worship God before laying out our requests. We start with our relationship, then acknowledge His Holy name. After that we put all our desires and pleas behind while we first submit to His perfect plan for the right now and the not yet. These are some things we learn when we follow our Savior’s advice to “Pray Like This”.

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 11:23 AM March 19, 2021.