Prayer for Effect

Prayer For Effect

Pastor Don Carpenter

Pray / Plan / Build / Nehemiah 1–11

1000 Illustrations for Preaching & Teaching Leave Your Prayer List

The sexton of a metropolitan church noticed scraps of paper in a certain pew in the sanctuary after each Sunday service. One day he made bold to examine the crumpled pieces of paper. He found such notes as: “Mary—ill; Bob, needs job; her rent due; my needs …” After a few weeks of this, the faithful custodian shared the mystery with the pastor, who alerted several members who sat in the area where messages were found to please identify, if possible, the person who was leaving tidbits of information each Sunday. The quiet plan succeeded. In due time, the minister adroitly engaged the lady in conversation in his study conversation in his study about the intriguing practice of leaving notes addressed to various people in her pew.

Smiling, the gentle lady declared that the bits of paper had deep meaning for her. “You will think it silly, but sometime ago I read, ‘Take your troubles to church with you.’ So I write down my concerns, burdens, and needs on little pieces of paper, take them to church, pray about them, and leave them there. I feel God is taking care of them!”

Tonight we start a new series entitled “Pray/ Plan/ Build” focusing on the incredible story of Nehemiah as he rallied a beleaguered nation to rise up and rebuild after years of defeat and humiliation. In the next few weeks may God stir our hearts to be like this hero of the faith, moved to do great things for our great God. It all starts with the urgency of prayer. and what kind of prayer taps into the most power of God. Following his example, let us learn how to pray for affect!

We Need to be Intellectually Affected

Psalm 37:4–5 KJV

Delight thyself also in the LORD; And he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. 

Commit thy way unto the LORD; Trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.

A. ASK about the state of God’s work!

Nehemiah 1:1–2 KJV

THE words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah. And it came to pass in the month Chisleu, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the palace, 

That Hanani, one of my brethren, came, he and certain men of Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews that had escaped, which were left of the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem.

 1. Be alert as to how we are perceived in the community

 2. Understand that our impact depends upon our perceived health

B. Note AFFLICTION– distress/misery because of the enemy’s victory

Nehemiah 1:3 KJV

And they said unto me, The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire.

Acts 4:18–23 KJV

And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. 

But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. 

For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard. 

So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding nothing how they might punish them, because of the people: for all men glorified God for that which was done. 

For the man was above forty years old, on whom this miracle of healing was shewed. 

And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them.

C. Note REPROACH

 1. Disgrace

 2. Because of lack of victory

 3. God gets glory when we produce fruit, not when we are barren.

D. Note the condition of the ministries of God now – Jerusalem’s walls were burned

We Need To Be Emotionally Affected

Nehemiah 1:4 KJV

And it came to pass, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned certain days, and fasted, and prayed before the God of heaven,

James 4:7–10 KJV

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 

Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. 

Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. 

Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

A. Sit down – in amazement

B. Weep – let it affect you!

C. Mourn – as you would lose a loved one

D. Fast – to distressed to eat!

E. Pray – driven to action

Abraham Lincoln:

“I have been driven many times to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go. My own wisdom and that of those about me seemed insufficient for the day.”

We Need To Be Personally Affected – Driven to prayer

A. Acknowledge God’s greatness

Nehemiah 1:5 KJV

And said, I beseech thee, O LORD God of heaven, the great and terrible God, that keepeth covenant and mercy for them that love him and observe his commandments:

 1. The God of Heaven

 2. Creator

 3. Great… in scope and dimension

 4. Terrible – One to be feared

 5. Covenant Keeper – you are going to hold Him to it!

B. Acknowledge our total dependence upon God

Nehemiah 1:6 KJV

Let thine ear now be attentive, and thine eyes open, that thou mayest hear the prayer of thy servant, which I pray before thee now, day and night, for the children of Israel thy servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel, which we have sinned against thee: both I and my father’s house have sinned.

 1. Listen to me!

 2. Look at this!

 3. Pray day and night

Luke 11:6–8 KJV

For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? 

And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. 

I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth.

C. Pray with a penitent heart

Nehemiah 1:7 KJV

We have dealt very corruptly against thee, and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the judgments, which thou commandedst thy servant Moses.

1. Repentance follows when you get a clear vision of who God is.

Isaiah 6:5 KJV

Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.

2. Effective prayer comes from the righteous.

James 5:16 KJV

Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

D. Remind God of His promises – Pray Biblically

Nehemiah 1:8–9 KJV

Remember, I beseech thee, the word that thou commandedst thy servant Moses, saying, If ye transgress, I will scatter you abroad among the nations: 

But if ye turn unto me, and keep my commandments, and do them; though there were of you cast out unto the uttermost part of the heaven, yet will I gather them from thence, and will bring them unto the place that I have chosen to set my name there.

E. Make it personal

Nehemiah 1:10–11 KJV

Now these are thy servants and thy people, whom thou hast redeemed by thy great power, and by thy strong hand. 

O Lord, I beseech thee, let now thine ear be attentive to the prayer of thy servant, and to the prayer of thy servants, who desire to fear thy name: and prosper, I pray thee, thy servant this day, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man. For I was the king’s cupbearer.

1. Your church

2. Your soul winning

3. Specific requests that line up with God’s will and work.

Acts 4:29–31 KJV

And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, 

By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus. 

And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

George Mueller was known for his powerful prayer. In the course of his ministry to the orphans of England, he never asked for financial assistance from men – only God… and he constantly received what was needed to the penny.

Once while on his way to speak in Quebec for a engagement. On the deck of the ship that was to carry him to his destination, he informed the captain that he needed to be in Quebec by Saturday afternoon.

As the captain related the story, he said “’It is impossible,’ I said. ’Do you know how dense this fog is?’”

“’No,’ he replied, ’my eye is not on the density of the fog, but on the living God who controls every circumstance of life. I have never broken an engagement in 57 years; let us go down into the chart room and pray.’

He knelt down and he prayed one of the most simple prayers. When he had finished I was going to pray, but he put his hand on my shoulder and told me not to pray. ’As you do not believe He will answer, and as I believe He has, there is no need for you whatever for you to pray about it.’

“I looked at him and George Mueller said, ’Captain, I have known my Lord for 57 yrs. and there has never been a single day when I have failed to get an audience with the King. Get up, Captain, and open the door and you will find that the fog has gone.’

“I got up and the fog indeed was gone, and on that Saturday afternoon George Mueller kept his promised engagement.”

SOURCE: Jeff Strite in “The Power of Persistent Prayer” on www.sermoncentral.com.

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 11:51 AM January 4, 2023.

Redeemed

Redeemed

Pastor Don Carpenter

White As Snow (Sermon Kit) / Colossians 1:11–14; Ephesians 1:6–8

Jeannette George tells a story about an experience she had on a short flight from Tucson to Phoenix. Across the aisle from her sat a young woman and her baby, both dressed in white pinafores. The baby had a little pink bow where there would eventually be hair. The mother was smiling, as the baby kept saying “Dada, Dada,” every time someone walked down the aisle.

The mother said Daddy was waiting for them after they had been gone for a few days. She was so adorable – quiet – that all passengers enjoyed watching her.

Unfortunately, there was a lot of turbulence, making the flight extremely rough, which of course was hard on the baby. But the mother had some fruit and a little Thermos with orange juice in it. Every time the baby cried the mother fed her a little bit more orange juice and a little more fruit.

While this seemed like a good idea at the time, the turbulence seemed to spread from the air around the plane right down to that baby’s gastro-intestinal system, and pretty much all of the fruit that had gone down came up.

However, the process of coming up was considerably messier than the process of going down had been. It also seemed to have increased in volume tremendously between the going down and the coming up, so that not only were the baby and the mother pretty much covered in it, but so were most of the passengers within a significant radius of the baby, including Jeanette George, who was telling the story.

Fortunately for the mortified mother, all of the passengers were gracious and tried to help her and tell her it was OK. After all what could she do about it?? The baby was crying, and she looked awful. Even though they didn’t cry, her fellow passengers looked – and smelled – pretty awful, too. The mother was so sorry about it.

As soon as they landed, the baby was fine and returned to calling: “Dada, Dada.” The rest of the passengers didn’t recover quite so quickly, being covered as they were in pre-digested fruit. Ms. George said, “I had on a suit, and I was trying to decide whether to burn it or just cut off the sleeve. It was really bad.”

Waiting for the plane was a young man who had to be “Dada.” He was wearing white slacks, a white shirt, and he carried white flowers. Now what do you think that clean Daddy all dressed in white did when he saw his baby who had that sticky, smelly stuff all over her clothes and her face and her hair?

He ran to the young mother, who handed the baby over pretty quickly so she could go get cleaned up. That Daddy picked up that baby, and he hugged her and he kissed her and he stroked her hair. As he held her close, he said, “Daddy’s baby’s come home. Daddy’s baby’s come home.”

All the way to the luggage claim area, he never stopped kissing that baby and welcoming her back home.

Ms. George thought, Where did I ever get the idea that my Father God is less loving than a young daddy in white slacks and white shirt with white flowers in his hand? [Jeannette Clift George, “Belonging and Becoming,” Preaching Today, Tape No. 93.]

Today is week three of our four week series, White as Snow. If you were with us a couple of weeks ago you’ll remember the title of our series comes from the prophet Isaiah who said to the Israelites; “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow.”

Isaiah, through the inspiration of the Spirit, was speaking about the innumerable sins of God’s people. In fact, he said their transgressions were so numerous that they were weighed down by sin. And yet, even in the midst of this reality, Isaiah was able to prophesy their sins, which were red like scarlet, would someday become white as snow.

But why could he say that? How would this come to be? What plan did God have in place to work this reality into His people?

These are good and right questions. And of course we now know the plan was in fact Jesus. Last week, we talked about God becoming human to be with us through the incarnation of Christ. This week, we turn our attention to the purpose of Christ on earth… the reason He came in the first place.

The good news is, this is the perfect time of year to consider again why it matters God put on flesh and dwelt with us. Why it matters that God sent His one and only son so that all who believe in Him might have eternal life.

John 3:16–17 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.

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Jesus didn’t come just to hang out with us, have a fish fry, and host some dinner parties. No, no, the plan was always bigger than that. The plan was nothing less than the redemption of mankind.

Yes, Christ is not only God’s great gift to us, or the perfect High Priest…. He’s also our redeemer.

Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible Redeemer, Redemption
Redeemer, Redemption. English words derived from a Latin root meaning “to buy back,” thus meaning the liberation of any possession, object, or person, usually by payment of a ransom. In Greek the root word means “to loose” and so to free. The term is used of freeing from chains, slavery, or prison. In the theological context, the term “redemption” indicates a freeing from the slavery of sin, the ransom or price paid for freedom. This thought is indicated in the Gospels, which speak of Christ who came “to give his life as a ransom for many”

Matthew 20:28 KJV
Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

Redemption can also lose some of it’s beauty and power when we think about redeeming things like buy one get one (BOGO) free coupons or raffle tickets for cheap toys and prizes. Truth be told, for those of us who believe, redemption is so indescribably precious because our redemption IS Jesus. He is the one in and through whom it is even possible for us to think about being redeemed and freed from the kingdom of sin and darkness.

Purchased Freedom From Darkness and Bondage.

Colossians 1:10–14 KJV
That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;

Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;

Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:

Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:

In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:

• We do right as those who have already been set free, not in order to merit freedom.

• Free to live in the Light empowered by His power.

• Free to live with longsuffering

• Free to live with joyfulness- in spite of our previous status as blinded slaves

• Free to be partakers of the inheritance of light.

• Free from the power of darkness

• Free from the condemnation and darkness of sin!

Light and dark are obviously an image of good and evil. In the Bible, light is often associated with God, goodness, hope, and generally positive things… And darkness, the opposite. But this isn’t just a convenient metaphor, light and dark do have power, for both good and evil… Listen to these words from author Joan Chittister;

“??Psychologists tell us that one of the most difficult conditions a person can be forced to bear is light deprivation. Darkness, in fact, is often used in military captivity or penal institutions to break down an individual’s sense of self. Once a person becomes disoriented, once they lose a sense of where they are, and what it is that lurks in the dark around them, or where the next crevasse or wall or attack may be coming from—once they can no longer feel in control of their physical surroundings—a person loses a sense of self.

Every shred of self-confidence shrivels. The giant within them falls and they become whimpering prey of the unknown. The natural instinct to be combative is paralyzed by fear. The spirit of resistance weakens. The prisoner becomes more pliable, more submissive, more willing to take directions.

It disarms a person, this falls into the sinkhole of sensory deprivation. It can drive them to madness. It is, every military knows, an effective technique. Nothing does more than darkness to isolate us from the sense of human support and understanding which, whether we’re commonly conscious of it or not, is the human being’s main source of self-definition. Indeed, darkness separates us from reality. It disorients a person both physically and psychologically.[1]”

Joan Chittister, Between the Dark and the Daylight, 2015, p. 17-18. The Crown Publishing Group.

Darkness separates us from reality. Darkness disorients a person, breaks them down, disarms them, and eventually swallows them whole. Well that doesn’t sound very pleasant does it? And yet, as you hear darkness described, there’s something about it that makes sense, and it also makes sense that the only antidote to darkness is light. And this reality is something the Bible has an awful lot to say about.

Paul is writing here to the church at Colossae with an amazingly encouraging word about light, darkness, and redemption. Those who abide in the kingdom of light have been freed from the dominion of darkness. And this is WHY Paul can say with confidence that we have been transferred from darkness to the kingdom of light, the kingdom of God’s beloved Son, Jesus. In whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

And there it is, JESUS. The one in whom we find our redemption. One commentator reminds us, “redemption meant freeing a slave by paying a price for that slave.[1]” It was Jesus who paid the price for you and I. He traded His very life so you and I might find an eternal life of freedom as members of the kingdom of light.

• [1] Craig Keener, Biblical Background Commentary: New Testament, p. 571. IVP Academic

Darkness is my point of view, my right to myself; light is God’s point of view.

Oswald Chambers

Purchased Freedom to Experience the Glory of God’s Grace!

Ephesians 1:6–8 KJV
To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;

• Made us accepted

• Made us Forgiven

• Made us to continue to discover the depths of the riches of His grace… more and more every day.

There it is, again, JESUS. The one in whom our redemption comes. The one through whom the riches of grace flow from the Father. The one through which a river flows of lavish love. The Father spared no expense and holds nothing back… As the apostle Paul says in 2 Corinthians 1:20; “For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”

All the promises of God find their yes in Christ. And what more can we do but muster up a hearty “amen” in response to it all? What more can we do but simply receive the extravagant love?

Actually we’ll talk about this more next week, but for today I think it’s good for us to simply sit and receive this indescribable gift we have been given.

Grace is but glory begun, and glory is but grace perfected.

Jonathan Edwards

Purchased Freedom to Walk in the Light

• In this life.

John 1:6–9 KJV
There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.

The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.

He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

1 John 1:5–7 KJV
This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:

But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

• In the life to come

Revelation 21:22–25 KJV
And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.

And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.

And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.

And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.

No night, no darkness, no need for the sun or the moon as the light of Christ perpetually shines on His kingdom. Sounds pretty amazing doesn’t it? This, to me, is the picture of extravagant goodness we look forward to as believers. Jesus didn’t just come to dwell with us, and it wasn’t only about freeing us from the slavery of darkness and sin. Redemption also means being set free to experience the manifold goodness and unbridled lavishing of love that God the Father has for us through His son.

Can we go back in time for a moment? Let’s jump back 2 weeks ago to when we started our series and we jumped right in with the prophet Isaiah. I want to take a little time to revisit the ancient prophets’ words as we simultaneously sit in the reality of redemption that we’ve been discussing today.

In Isaiah chapter 1 the prophet is sharing with God’s people just how disgusted God is with their sin. He says things like, “I cannot bear your worthless assemblies,” and “When you spread out your hands in prayer, I hide my eyes from you.” “Your hands are full of blood,” he says, which is another way of saying, “You’re guilty!”

All of that leads up to Isaiah 1:18 which, as I’m sure you now know says, “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow.” But the part of this verse that I haven’t been quoting yet is the very beginning of it, which says, “Come now, let us settle the matter.” And in ancient terms this was a legal way of saying let’s balance our differences and reach an agreement. Let’s “settle up,” is a very common way of saying, “Let’s figure out what you owe me.”

And that’s where you’ve just got to love the heart of God the Father who then says, “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow.” Instead of saying, you owe me this and this and this for all your egregious sins God says through Isaiah that the stain of sin on their lives will be made clean. Or another way to say that is you’re forgiven.

You’re redeemed… I’ve settled the debt and set you free.

Conclusion

You’re free.

Think about this statement for a moment today. Free from your past life of sin. Free from the darkness. Free from shame and guilt. Your debt has been settled and you’re free.

I don’t know about you but the holiday season can often feel to me like an overly rushed, exhausting reminder of all the things I don’t have and can’t do. Songs of joy and cheer often feel forced or even coerced from my mouth as I know I should be full of Christmas cheer… but sometimes I’m just emptied of it all.

Maybe you can relate.

And if you can relate, then I hope you can also relate to the amazing peace and calm that comes when you stop to consider that for everything you don’t have and can’t do there is something you do have that is more valuable and important than anything that Amazon has for sale.

You probably guessed it, JESUS.

In whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of our sins. In whom all the promises of God are yes. In whom we have a constant companion, He is Immanuel. God with us.

And because of Christ, our debt has been completely settled. We stand before God as white as freshly fallen snow.

No more guilt, no more shame, no more striving to accomplish things you and I could never do on our own in the first place.

Take some time this coming week to consider all you’ve been set free from. Count the blessings and the cost of redemption. And if you haven’t ever accepted Christ as Lord and Savior, then this is as good a time as any. You will never know a more extravagant and lavish love than that of Christ. Give Him room in your life. Give Him a chance.

And when all else fades away, give me Jesus.

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 1:41 PM December 14, 2022.

Sins Like Scarlet

Sins Like Scarlet

Pastor Don Carpenter

White As Snow (Sermon Kit) / Isaiah 1:18; Romans 3:23

 Our Heavenly Father is an incredible artist. There are not many scenes more beautiful than the blanket of the season’s first significant snowfall. As a boy I remember waking up and looking out my window at the pristine white back yard completely untouched… for a moment it stood without any footprints… just perfect, white and undisturbed.

As we venture headlong into the Christmas season, we’ll be starting a new four week series called White as Snow. A fitting name for the season, but believe me this isn’t going to be a cute series about snowmen, snowball fights, and sledding down steep hills. No, this is an important time of year to talk about things like sin, salvation, and our beloved savior, Jesus.

As we inch closer and closer to Christmas morning it’s important to consider the eternal importance of the birth of Christ. Why did God send His only Son and what did Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection accomplish? What is the lasting impact and why did God choose to use people like us to build His church?

Obviously these are deeply profound questions… A far cry from the questions many of us are asking this holiday season.

? “Will Target ever get those video game systems back in stock?”

? “Why does Prime 2-day shipping keep taking 5 days? Who’s in charge over there?”

? “I sure hope my spouse/significant other/family/friends/etc.. were listening when I dropped all those hints about my Christmas presents.”

When I say all that out loud I’m struck by how trivial it all sounds. These are truly small problems compared to the issues many families around the world are facing this Christmas. But, then again, that’s kind-of the point of our gathering together. That’s the point of a series like White as Snow.

As we turn our eyes to Christ today we’ve also got to recognize there’s something else in the picture. Something that none of us want to talk about but all of us struggle with… If you’re thinking, “New Year’s Resolutions” right now you’d be close, but that’s not quite it.

What I’m referring to is sin. It’s something we’ve got to talk about if we’re also going to talk about the amazing reality of Christ in our lives. But, Praise God, one simply has to open their Bible to see God’s unique answer to the sin problem. Let us discover from God’s Word Three Absolute Truths about Sin that serves as the foundation for the wonderful Christmas story.  

Sin Stains

Isaiah 1:4 KJV

Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, A seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: They have forsaken the LORD, They have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, They are gone away backward.

If you’re not familiar with the major prophets of God, like Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, then this is a good introduction. As seen in this one verse, God is speaking through the mouth of Isaiah to pronounce judgment and condemnation on the people of Israel. He calls them “sinful people” who are bent over by the weight of their sin (guilt), and that’s just the start of it. He calls them an entire group of evildoers given to lives of corruption who have forsaken their God, spurned Him, and turned their backs on Him. And all of that is just one verse, just one breath from the mouth of Isaiah.

As hard as it is to hear God speak of His people like that, it’s even harder to acknowledge it’s all true. God’s people turned their back on Him, they buried themselves beneath lives of sin.

And who are we to believe we are any different?

Sin is:

 • Any Thought Word or Deed done that God says we should not do that we do anyway.

 • Any Thought, Word, Deed that God says we should do that we do not do.

Sin Infects Everyone

Proverbs 16:25 KJV

There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, But the end thereof are the ways of death.

Romans 3:19 KJV

Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

Romans 3:23 KJV

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

Galatians 3:22 KJV

But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.

1 John 1:8 KJV

If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

1 John 1:10 KJV

If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

Sin Brings The Label of Condemnation

1 Corinthians 6:9–10 KJV

Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 

Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

Sin Brings the State of Condemnation

 Romans 6:23 (KJV)

 For the wages of sin is death…

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.

Sin Stains Are Impossible to Remove

The Law Won’t Do It

Romans 3:19–20 KJV

Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. 

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.

Any Good Deed Becomes Contaminated By Our Filthy Sin

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.

BUT…

With God the Impossible is Possible!

 Genesis 18:14 (KJV)

 Is any thing too hard for the LORD?…

Luke 1:37 KJV

For with God nothing shall be impossible.

God Can Make Sin Stains White as Snow.

We Have The Promises to Prove It

Micah 7:19 KJV

He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; He will subdue our iniquities; And thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.

Psalm 51:7 KJV

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

1 Corinthians 6:9–11 KJV

Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 

Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. 

And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

Isaiah 1:4 KJV

Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, A seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: They have forsaken the LORD, They have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, They are gone away backward.

Matthew 11:28 KJV

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

We Have God’s Explanation of How This Is Possible.

 Isaiah 1:18 (KJV)

 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; Though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

 • Jesus is perfectly white/ sinless

Hebrews 4:15 KJV

For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

Mark 9:2–3 KJV

And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and James, and John, and leadeth them up into an high mountain apart by themselves: and he was transfigured before them. 

And his raiment became shining, exceeding white as snow; so as no fuller on earth can white them.

 • Jesus became our sin so we could become His righteousness – or white-ness

2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

 • Upon belief we do not just have our garments washed but scotch guarded by the Blood of Jesus… standing in His righteousness.

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.

Titus 3:5 KJV

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

Revelation 7:14 KJV

And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

As you dwell on that thought for a moment listen to the words of the late preacher Charles Spurgeon;

“The Lord does not deny the truth of what the sinner has confessed, but he says to him, ‘though your sins be as scarlet’, I meet you on that ground. You need not try to diminish the extent of your sin, or seek to make it appear to be less than it really is, it is all that, and probably far more. Your deepest sense of your sinfulness does not come up to the truth concerning your real condition; certainly, you do not exaggerate in the least. Your sins are scarlet, and crimson; it seems as though you have put on the imperial robe of sin, and made yourself a monarch of the realm of evil. That is how a man’s guilt appears before the searching eye of God.”

So my friends, lets reason together. Your sins are as scarlet. They stain every fiber of your being. There is no getting that stain out. Communion won’t make it fade. The waters of Baptism will only be fouled bur attempt to absolve yourself through dead works. Every work, rite, or ritual will fall short. But… with God it is possible to be made clean. Will you turn your trust from your works and onto the finished work of Jesus on the cross, ask Him to Save you, and be made White as Snow?

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 1:36 PM November 30, 2022.

Join Us This Sunday at 11:00 AM For The Last Message in the Series “Five Smooth Stones”

We’ve been journeying through the well-known story of David and Goliath, which I hope has been encouraging to you.? The challenger was a nine foot tall giant named Goliath, who looked to be the favorite in the battle. God then chose David, a simple shepherd boy, to fight against Goliath. This battle required a focus solely on his God… And finally, this Sunday, we get to celebrate victory. Will we see you at 11?