ONALASKA FIRST CHURCH OF GOD

"Where Your Experience In Christ, Makes You A Member"

133 3rd Avenue,  P.O. Box 245,  Onalaska,  Washington  98570     (360) 978-4161      FAX (360) 978-6941  
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MAY SERMONS

 

GOD IS LOVE

 

MAY 5, 2013

 

SCRIPTURE READING: I JOHN 4:16-21

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: 1 John 4:16 (NLT)

 

    We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in him.  God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them.

 

THE LOVE OF GOD (song)

 

INTRO: As God’s Holiness is the diamond of God’s attributes, love is what binds all of God’s attributes together.

 

Col 3:14 (NLT) And the most important piece of clothing you must wear is love. Love is what binds us all together in perfect harmony.

 

   The Christian Faith is the only religion that worships a God of Love. 

 

   It is God’s Love that binds the Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit, together; it is His Love that binds Him together with us; and it is His Love that binds every True Believer together with every other True Believer.

 

I. GOD’S LOVE FOR HIS SON

 

NOTE: The Father expressed His love for His Son at Jesus’ baptism.

 

Matthew 3:17 (KJV) And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

 

   The Father again expressed His love for His son at the transfiguration of Jesus.

 

Matthew 17:5 (KJV) While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.

 

   Jesus acknowledged the love the Father had for Him while He was in the upper room with His disciples.

 

John 15:9 (KJV) As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.

 

II. GOD’S LOVE FOR US.

 

NOTE: When we use the term, Love, it can have many different meanings.

 

  How we define love is revealed by what it is that we love.

 

   How the object of our love reacts towards us often determines how much love we have for that object.

 

   God’s love is totally different.

 

v  GOD LOVED US BEFORE WE WERE LOVEABLE.

 

Romans 5:7-8 (NLT) Now, no one is likely to die for a good person, though someone might be willing to die for a person who is especially good.  But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.

 

1 John 4:19 (KJV) We love him, because he first loved us.

 

NOTE: It was because God loved us that He redeemed us the world of sin.

 

Deuteronomy 7:8 (KJV) But because the Lord loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the Lord brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.

 

BOUNDLESS LOVE (song)

 

v  GOD’S LOVE IS EVERLASTING:

 

Jeremiah 31:3 (KJV) The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.

 

NOTE: Our love often changes for one day to the next.

 

   God love never changes.

 

   Even after David’s sin, God loved him, even after Peter’s denial God loved him.

 

v  GOD’S LOVE IS ALL INCLUSIVE.

 

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.

 

   There is no one who is outside of God’s love.

 

v  HIS LOVE IS UNFAILING. 

 

NOTE: In the KJV of the Bible, UNFAILING LOVE is often translated as lovingkindness.

 

THY LOVINGKINDNESS (song)

 

   The thought of unfailing love is that it will last forever.

 

Psalm 89:2 (NLT) Your unfailing love will last forever.  Your faithfulness is as enduring as the heavens.

 

Ø  God’s unfailing love will lead us.

 

Exodus 15:13 (NLT) "With unfailing love you will lead this people whom you have ransomed.  You will guide them in your strength to the place where your holiness dwells.

 

Psalm 25:10 (NLT) The Lord leads with unfailing love and faithfulness all those who keep his covenant and obey his decrees.

 

Ø  God’s unfailing love forgives our sins.

 

Numbers 14:18 (NLT) 'The Lord is slow to anger and rich in unfailing love, forgiving every kind of sin and rebellion. Even so he does not leave sin unpunished, but he punishes the children for the sins of their parents to the third and fourth generations.'

 

Ø  God’s unfailing love allows us to enter into His presences.

 

Psalm 5:7 (NLT) Because of your unfailing love, I can enter your house; with deepest awe I will worship at your Temple.

 

Ø  God’s unfailing love is better than life.

 

Psalm 63:3 (NLT) Your unfailing love is better to me than life itself; how I praise you!

 

CONCLUSION:  The Communion Table is a symbol of God’s great love for us.

 

John 1:17 (NLT) For the law was given through Moses; God's unfailing love and faithfulness came through Jesus Christ.

 

Romans 5:7-8 (NLT) Now, no one is likely to die for a good person, though someone might be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.

 

   God’s unfailing love is available to us today, have you accepted His unfailing love?

 

MAY 12, 2013

 

A GOD OF MERCY

 

SCRIPTURE READING: LAMENTATIONS 3:22-26

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: James 2:13 (NLT)

 

   For there will be no mercy for you if you have not been merciful to others. But if you have been merciful, then God's mercy toward you will win out over his judgment against you.

 

INTRO: God's mercy is an attribute that comes from the goodness of God, with a rescuing power behind those who are miserable, needy, suffering or helpless in their situation.

 

   Why is it important that God is a God of Mercy?

 

I. GOD IS HOLY, BUT MAN IS SINFUL.

 

Romans 3:23 (NLT) For all have sinned; all fall short of God's glorious standard.

 

A.    GOD’S HOLINESS DEMANDS THAT THOSE WHO SIN MUST DIE.

 

Ezekiel 18:4 (KJV) Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.

 

Romans 6:23 (KJV) For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

NOTE: Because of our sin we will face God’s judgment.

 

Hebrews 9:27 (KJV) And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:

 

B.      WE ARE UNABLE TO FREE OURSELVES FROM SIN.

 

Proverbs 20:9 (KJV) Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?

 

ILL: A pancake breakfast.

 

C.    THIS IS WHERE GOD’S MERCY COMES IN.

 

NOTE: It is only through accepting God’s mercy that we are kept from facing His judgment.

 

Isaiah 55:7 (KJV) 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.

 

Lamentations 3:22 (NLT) The unfailing love of the Lord never ends! By his mercies we have been kept from complete destruction.

 

NOTE: As the judgment of death is required as the penalty for sin,   God’s mercy was first shown in the Garden of Eden.

 

Genesis 3:21 (NLT) And the Lord God made clothing from animal skins for Adam and his wife.

 

ILL: Windshield wipers and sin.

 

Psalm 86:15 (NLT) But you, O Lord, are a merciful and gracious God, slow to get angry, full of unfailing love and truth.

 

NOTE: Remember, mercy is only for those who are unable to help themselves.

 

Ephesians 2:4-6 (NLT) But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so very much, that even while we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God's special favor that you have been saved!) For he raised us from the dead along with Christ, and we are seated with him in the heavenly realms—all because we are one with Christ Jesus.

 

NOTE: The sins of those who accept God’s mercy are taken away.

 

Psalm 32:1 (NLT) A psalm of David.

   Oh, what joy for those whose rebellion is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight! Yes, what joy for those whose record the Lord has cleared of sin, whose lives are lived in complete honesty!

 

II. WHAT IS EXPECTED OF US IN REGARDS TO MERCY?

 

NOTE: Mercy is a Moral Attribute of God and He expects us to seek to possess these attributes.

 

·         As God is holy He expects us to be holy.

 

Leviticus 11:45 (NLT) I, the Lord, am the one who brought you up from the land of Egypt to be your God. You must therefore be holy because I am holy.

 

·         As God is love He expects us to love.

 

1 John 4:21 (NLT) And God himself has commanded that we must love not only him but our Christian brothers and sisters, too.

 

·         As God is merciful He expects to be merciful.

 

Micah 6:8 (KJV) He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

 

Luke 6:36 (KJV) Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.

 

   We should practice mercy every opportunity we have.

 

Proverbs 3:3 (KJV) Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart:

 

CONCLUSION: As we show mercy to others we will receive mercy ourselves.

 

Matthew 5:7 (KJV) Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. 

 

James 2:13 (NLT) For there will be no mercy for you if you have not been merciful to others. But if you have been merciful, then God's mercy toward you will win out over his judgment against you.

 

ILL: Pancakes Breakfast

   Six year old Brandon decided one Saturday morning to fix his parents pancakes. He found a big bowl and spoon, pulled a chair to the counter, opened the cupboard and pulled out the heavy flour canister, spilling it on the floor. He scooped some of the flour into the bowl with his hands, mixed in most of a cup of milk and added some sugar, leaving a floury trail on the floor which by now had a few tracks left by his kitten. Brandon was covered with flour and getting frustrated. He wanted this to be something very good for Mom and Dad, but it was getting very bad. He didn’t know what to do next, whether to put it all into the oven or on the stove, (and he didn’t know how the stove worked)! Suddenly he saw his kitten licking from the bowl of mix and reached to push her away, knocking the egg carton to the floor. Frantically he tried to clean up this monumental mess but slipped on the eggs, getting his pajamas dirty. And just then he saw Dad standing at the door. Big crocodile tears welled up in Brandon’s eyes. All he wanted to do was something good, but he’d made a terrible mess. He was sure a scolding was coming, maybe even a smacking. But his father just watched him. Then, walking through the mess, he picked up his crying son, hugged him and loved him, getting his own pajamas dirty in the process. That’s how God deals with us. We try to do something good in life, but it turns into a mess. Our marriage gets all sticky or we insult a friend or we can’t stand our job or our health goes sour. Sometimes we just stand there in tears because we can’t think of anything else to do. That’s when God picks us up and loves us and forgives us, even though some of our mess gets all over Him. But just because we might mess up, we can’t stop trying to “make pancakes,” for God or for others. Sooner or later we’ll get it right, and then they’ll be glad we tried.

ILL: WINDSHIELD WIPERS

   One rainy afternoon a mother was driving along one of the main streets of town. Suddenly, her son Matthew spoke up from his relaxed position in the rear seat. “Mom, I’m thinking of something.” This announcement usually meant he had been pondering some fact for a while and was now ready to expound all that his seven-year-old mind had discovered. His mother was eager to hear. “What are you thinking?” she asked. “The rain, is like sin and the windscreen wipers are like God, wiping our sins away.” “That’s really good, Matthew”, she replied. Then my curiosity broke in. How far would this little boy take this revelation? So she asked, ”Do you notice how the rain keeps on coming? What does that tell you?” Matthew didn’t hesitate one moment with his answer: “We keep on sinning, and God just keeps on forgiving us.” Isn’t it comforting to know that God does keep forgiving us? That all we have to do is trust Jesus as our Savior and He will keep washing our sins away. Hallelujah!

 

MAY 19, 2013

 

GOD THE ROCK

 

SCRIPTURE READING: DEUTERONOMY 32:1-4

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: Deuteronomy 32:4 (KJV)

 

    He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.

 

INTRO: As we face the shifting sands of change in our country, we need something that is strong and dependable to keep us safe.

 

   Are you tired of seeing the things we hold so dear being discarded and destroyed by the ungodly?

 

   That which is called holy is now called evil, and that which was evil is now called good.

 

Isaiah 5:20 (NLT) Destruction is certain for those who say that evil is good and good is evil; that dark is light and light is dark; that bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter.

 

   We are facing dark times and we need to find a place of safety and rest.

 

Psalm 62:8 (KJV) Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah.

 

   God is the rock we must turn to.

 

Isaiah 32:2 (NLT) He will shelter Israel from the storm and the wind. He will refresh her as a river in the desert and as the cool shadow of a large rock in a hot and weary land.

 

   What do you think of when you hear the word rock?

 

   Consider what David said in 2 Samuel 22:2-3 (NLT) These are the words he sang: "The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection.         He is my shield, the strength of my salvation, and my stronghold, my high tower, my savior, the one who saves me from violence.

 

·         My fortress

·         My savior

·         My protection

·         My shield

·         My strength

·         My stronghold

·         My high tower

 

   There is no other place we can turn to.

 

Psalm 18:31 (NLT) For who is God except the Lord?  Who but our God is a solid rock?

 

   God is unlike any other place where we might think we can find refuge.

 

1 Samuel 2:2 (NLT) No one is holy like the Lord!  There is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God.

 

   Only God can keep us through these closing days.

 

Psalm 62:2 (NLT) He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will never be shaken.

 

Psalm 94:22 (NLT) But the Lord is my fortress; my God is a mighty rock where I can hide.

 

NOTE: As we have considered the different attributes of God, we know that there is nothing He can’t do.

 

   What good would all these attributes be if we could not trust God to keep His Word and to be justice in His dealings with us?

 

   It is these two attributes that should give us the faith to trust God when everything around us is falling apart.

 

·         Truth

·         Justice

 

I. A GOD OF TRUTH.

 

   A. GOD WILL ALWAYS KEEP HIS PROMISES.

 

NOTE: There is nothing worse than to put your trust in someone in your hour of need only to have them fail to keep their promise.

 

   To promise you one thing but does another.

 

   There are times by either choice or unable to help themselves, man will not fulfill his promises.

 

Hebrews 6:18 (NLT) So God has given us both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can take new courage, for we can hold on to his promise with confidence.

 

Hebrews 6:13 (NLT) For example, there was God's promise to Abraham. Since there was no one greater to swear by, God took an oath in his own name, saying:

 

   B. WE ARE BEING BOMBARDED BY OFFERS OF BECOMING RICH ONLY TO FIND

       THAT THERE ARE A SCAM.

 

Romans 3:4 (NLT) Of course not! Though everyone else in the world is a liar, God is true. As the Scriptures say, "He will be proved right in what he says, and he will win his case in court."

 

   C. WHATEVER GOD HAD PROMISED HE IS ABLE TO FULFILL.

 

Romans 4:21 (NLT) He was absolutely convinced that God was able to do anything he promised.

 

NOTE: Therefore we can have the confidence and faith that God is not only able, but will also keep all His promises to us.

 

II. GOD IS JUST.

 

NOTE: There are so many injustices going on in our world.

 

·         The guilty being exonerated.

·         The innocent condemned.

·         The unfair treatment one group gets over another. 

 

NOTE: God’s holiness has to do with His character, while justice and righteousness has to do with His dealing with His creation.

 

    The justice and righteousness of God is revealed in two different ways: God’s dealing with the ungodly and God’s dealing with the righteous.

 

Romans 6:23 (NLT) For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

   A. GOD’S DEALING WITH THE UNGODLY.

 

 Romans 1:20 (NLT) From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing God.

 

   God does not desire the death of the wicked.

 

Ezekiel 18:23 (NLT) "Do you think, asks the Sovereign Lord, that I like to see wicked people die? Of course not! I only want them to turn from their wicked ways and live.

 

   B. GOD’S DEALING WITH THE RIGHTEOUS.

 

NOTE: God’s salvation is offered to all who will call upon God.

 

Romans 10:13 (KJV) For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

 

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.

 

CONCLUSION: How blessed we are to worship a God who is both truth and just.

 

MAY 26, 2013

 

FEELING ABANDONED BY GOD?”

 

SCRIPTURE READING: ISAIAH 49:13-17

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: Isaiah 49:16 (KJV)

 

    Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me.

 

INTRO: Have you ever felt abandon?

   The feeling of abandonment is painful and very frightening.

 

   Feeling all alone, where no one seems to care.

 

   The ones we loved and counted upon are nowhere to be found.

 

Psalm 142:4 (NLT) I look for someone to come and help me, but no one gives me a passing thought!  No one will help me; no one cares a bit what happens to me.

 

   There are those who would say that no true Christian would ever feel abandoned, yet there are many who do.

 

I. THE FEELING OF ABANDONMENT.

 

NOTE: There are many ways we can experience the feeling of abandonment.

 

1.    Abandon by a spouse.

2.    Abandon by a parent

3.    Abandon by your children

4.    Abandon by a friend

5.    Abandon by your country

6.    Abandon by your employer

7.    Abandon by God

 

II. FEELING ABANDONED BY GOD

 

   Job felt abandoned.

 

Job 23:3, 8-9 (NLT) If only I knew where to find God, I would go to his throne and talk with him there… "I go east, but he is not there. I go west, but I cannot find him. I do not see him in the north, for he is hidden. I turn to the south, but I cannot find him.

 

   David felt abandoned many times.

 

Psalm 10:1 (NLT) O Lord, why do you stand so far away?  Why do you hide when I need you the most?

 

 Psalm 13:1-2 (NLT) O Lord, how long will you forget me? Forever? How long will you look the other way? How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul, with sorrow in my heart every day?  How long will my enemy have the upper hand?

 

   Asaph, the Palmist, felt abandon when he saw how the wicked seemed to prosper, while the godly didn’t

 

Psalm 73:12-16 (NLT) Look at these arrogant people            enjoying a life of ease while their riches multiply. Was it for nothing that I kept my heart pure and kept myself from doing wrong? All I get is trouble all day long; every morning brings me pain.  If I had really spoken this way, I would have been a traitor to your people.  So I tried to understand why the wicked prosper.  But what a difficult task it is!

 

   Elijah felt abandoned.

 

1 Kings 19:10 & 14 (NLT) Elijah replied, "I have zealously served the Lord God Almighty. But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, torn down your altars, and killed every one of your prophets. I alone am left, and now they are trying to kill me, too."

 

NOTE: These godly men and others Believers have experienced the feeling of abandonment.

 

   The great preacher Charles Spurgeon had bouts with depression.

 

II. GOD WILL NEVER ABANDON US.

 

NOTE: Although we should never feel abandoned by God there are some who do.

 

A. Why then does a Believer feel abandoned by God?

 

1.      They lack an understanding of who God is.

 

Philippians 3:8-10 (NLT) Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I may have Christ and become one with him. I no longer count on my own goodness or my ability to obey God's law, but I trust Christ to save me. For God's way of making us right with himself depends on faith.  As a result, I can really know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I can learn what it means to suffer with him, sharing in his death,

 

2.      They are walking by sight not by faith.

 

John 20:25 (NLT) They told him, "We have seen the Lord!" But he replied, "I won't believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side."

 

3.      They take their eyes off God.

 

Matthew 14:30 (NLT) But when he looked around at the high waves, he was terrified and began to sink. "Save me, Lord!" he shouted.

 

     B.  GOD’S PROOF THAT HE WILL NEVER ABANDON US.

 

Isaiah 49:15 (NLT) "Never! Can a mother forget her nursing child? Can she feel no love for a child she has borne? But even if that were possible, I would not forget you!

 

NOTE: God gives two reasons why we should never feel abandon by God.

 

1.      His promises of never to abandon us.

 

Deuteronomy 4:31 (KJV) (For the Lord thy God is a merciful God;) he will not forsake thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them.

 

Matthew 28:20 (NLT) Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age."

 

Hebrews 13:5 (GW) Don't love money. Be happy with what you have because God has said, "I will never abandon you or leave you."

 

2.      The scars in His hands.

 

Isaiah 49:16 (NLT) See, I have written your name on my hand. Ever before me is a picture of Jerusalem's walls in ruins.

 

   The nail scars in Jesus’ hands spell out each and every name of those who have accepted Him as Lord and Savior.

 

CONCLUSION: Whenever the feeling of abandonment comes over us, we must put our trust in God’s promises and remember the price He paid to make us His children.

 

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