ONALASKA FIRST CHURCH OF GOD

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

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SERMONS FOR THE MONTH OF JANUARY

JANUARY 2017 SERMONS

 

JANUARY 1, 2017

 

WHERE IS GOD?

 

SCRIPTURE READING: JOB 23:1-12

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: Job 23:3 (TLB)

 

   Oh, that I knew where to find God—that I could go to his throne and talk with him there.

 

INTRO: How often are we like Job, wanting to be able to see, touch and hear God?

 

   We want a God with skin on.

 

   Job suffered for no apparent reason, and the more he cried out for God's help, the more silent and further away God seemed to be.

 

   As we enter in 2017 our hearts are filled with concern and fears.

 

   There is tremendous unrest not only in the world but also in our nation.

 

   The agenda of the ungodly is being pressed heavily upon us, while our faith and commitment to God is being attacked.

 

   The just shall live by faith, but living by faith is not always easy.

 

   When some of us are striving to live righteous lives and to follow the Lord, it is easy to wonder how God can allow so much evil and corruption in the world and seemingly do nothing about it.

 

Consider Job:

 

·         He lost everything; family & possessions

·         He suffered excruciating pain and grief.

·         He was attacked and accused falsely by those who should have supported him.

 

NOTE: In spite of all these, Job never stopped trusting God

 

   We seldom ask why when we are being blessed, but WHY? is most likely the first question we ask when we face difficulties

 

2 Corinthians 4:17-18 "For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal"


I. WHEN PRAYERS DON’T SEEM TO WORK

 

   A. SIN WILL HINDER OUR PRAYERS

 

Psalm 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:

 

Isaiah 59:2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

 

NOTE: Sin was not Job’s problem

 

Job 23:11-12 My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined. Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.

 

   B. SOMETIMES GOD SAYS NO

 

2 Corinthians 12:7-9 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

 

   C. MOST OF THE TIME IT HAS TO DO WITH TIMING

 

Galatians 4:4 (GW) But when the right time came, God sent his Son {into the world}. A woman gave birth to him, and he came under the control of God's laws.

 

NOTE: God was silent for 22 years in regards to Jacob’s prayers for Joseph

 

   The delay in going to Lazarus:

 

John 11:6 When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was.  

 

   God has a better plan

 

II. JOB’S DILEMMA

 

   A. JOB SOUGHT TO FIND GOD

 

Job 23:3 Oh that I knew where I might find him! That I might come even to his seat!

 

   Job sought to find God, not to blame Him but to ask why.

 

·         He sought to find where God was

·         He wanted to explain his problem and state why God should answer his cry

·         He wanted to understand why he was going through this trial

 

Job 23:4-5 I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments. I would know the words which he would answer me, and understand what he would say unto me.

 

   It’s okay to ask God why we are facing our troubles.

 

NOTE: Job knew that God would treat him fairly.

 

Job 23:6-7 Will he plead against me with his great power? No; but he would put strength in me. There the righteous might dispute with him; so should I be delivered for ever from my judge.

 

   B. JOB WAS UNABLE TO FIND GOD

 

Job 23:8-9 (KJV) Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him: On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him:

 

NOTE: In spite of all Job’s efforts and desires, he was unable to find God

 

   We like Job, seek to find God in our situation but are unable to do so

 

III. JOB’S ANSWER TO HIS SITUATION

 

NOTE: Job found the solution to his situation in two things:

 

   A. GOD KNOWS WHAT IS HAPPENING IN HIS LIFE

 

NOTE: Although he could not find God, Job knew that God knew and saw what he was going through,

 

Job 23:10a But he knoweth the way that I take…

 

   To Job God may seem to have been hidden, but Job was never hidden from God

 

   B. GOD WAS TESTING HIM AND IN THE END HE WOULD BE A

       BETTER PERSON BECAUSE OF THIS

 

Job 23:10bwhen he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.

 

CONCLUSION: Are we willing to trust God when He seems far away from us?

 

Isaiah 12:2 Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.

 

 

JANUARY 8, 2017

 

“THE MINISTRY OF RECONCILIATION”

 

SCRIPTURE READING: 1 CORINTHIANS 5:17-21

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: 2 Corinthians 5:17

 

   Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

 

INTRO: Is there an individual or a group of people you would rather not see saved, but to spend eternity in Hell?

 

   There are those who have done such wicked and evil things that we find it in ourselves hard to seek their redemption.

 

   The prophet Jonah has such an attitude.

 

I. STORY OF JONAH

 

   Jonah was called by God to declare God’s judgment against Nineveh.

 

Jonah 1:1-2 Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.

 

   Why did God call Nineveh a great city?

 

   A. JONAH RAN FROM THE CALL OF GOD

 

Jonah 1:3 But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.

 

NOTE: Jonah paid his fare.  When you run from God it will cost you.

 

   When you seek to run from the presence of God you are on a downward path.

 

NOTE: The downward path Jonah took: down to JOPPA, down to the SHIP, down to the BOTTOM OF THE SHIP, down to the SEA, down to THE FISHES’ BELLY.

 

   Jonah was unable to run from the presence of God

 

Psalm 139:7-12 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me. Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.

 

   B. WHY DIDN’T JONAH WANT TO CARRY GOD’S MESSAGE TO NINEVEH?

 

·         Was he afraid for his safety

·         Was he afraid of the size of Nineveh

·         Was he afraid of being rejected

 

   The Bible gives us the answer: Jonah 3:10 - 4:2

 

Jonah 3:10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not. But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry. And he prayed unto the LORD, and said, I pray thee, O LORD, was not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil.

 

   Jonah knew that if Nineveh repented of their sins, God would forgive them and not bring judgment against them.

 

v  He was more concerned with his reputation as a prophet

v  He had no desire to see the people of Nineveh forgiven

 

II. OUR ATTITUDE TOWARDS THOSE WHO ARE LOST

 

Mark 16:15-16 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

 

NOTE: We are to seek the salvation of any and all who are lost.

 

   A. GOD LOVED US WHILE WE WERE LIVING IN SIN

 

Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

 

Ephesians 2:4-5 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

 

   Because God loved us while we were sinners, so should we love others.

 

   B. GOD WOULD RATHER FORGIVE THAN JUDGE

 

Ezekiel 18:23 Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live?

 

2 Peter 3:9 (GW) The Lord isn't slow to do what he promised, as some people think. Rather, he is patient for your sake. He doesn't want to destroy anyone but wants all people to have an opportunity to turn to him and change the way they think and act.

 

   C. WHEN THE SINNER TRULY REPENTS, GOD FORGIVES THEM

 

Isaiah 1:18 (TLB) "Come, let’s talk this over!" says the Lord; "no matter how deep the stain of your sins, I can take it out and make you as clean as freshly fallen snow. Even if you are stained as red as crimson, I can make you white as wool!

 

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

 

   D. HE CHANGES THEM INTO A NEW CREATION

 

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

 

III. OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO THOSE WHO ARE LOST

 

2 Corinthians 5:18 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;

 

   We are to seek reconciliation for all those who are lost regardless of their sins.

 

   Do we have the spirit of Jonah, or do we have the spirit of reconciliation?

 

Galatians 6:1 (GW) Brothers and sisters, if a person gets trapped by wrongdoing, those of you who are spiritual should help that person turn away from doing wrong. Do it in a gentle way. At the same time watch yourself so that you also are not tempted.

 

CONCLUSION: If God seeks to reconcile the worst of sinner so should we.

 

Micah 7:18-19 Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger forever, because he delighteth in mercy. 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.

 

      It’s easy to allow our own spirit to seek judgment for those whom we see as unworthy of forgiveness, we need the Spirit of Christ to fill our hearts with His Love and the ministry of reconciliation.

 

JANUARY 15, 2017

 

GOD’S AMAZING GRACE

 

SCRIPTURE READING: ROMANS 3:19-26

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: ROMANS 3:24

 

Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

 

INTRO:  There is no word more meaningful to man than the word Grace.

 

   There are many uses for the word Grace,

 

v  We name our children Grace

v  We say Grace before we eat our meals

v  Someone enters a room with Grace

v  There is a Grace period in paying our bills

 

   There is a vast difference between what the world means by grace and the Grace that God has provided for us.

 

   What does the word Grace mean to you?

 

   How would you describe the word Grace to someone who had never heard of the word Grace?

 

   Sometimes as Christians the word Grace can become so common that we lose sight of what it truly means.

 

   I wish to share my acronym of what Grace means to me.

 

I.  WHAT IS GRACE?

GOD’S GENEROSITY TO SINFUL MAN

 

NOTE: There are two parts of understanding Grace:

 

v  Who it is that is providing Grace

 

   If we have a low concept of God we will not have a high appreciation of His Grace.

 

1.    God is holy and righteous

2.    God is perfect and without flaw or sin

3.    God hates sin and will not tolerate sin

4.    God is just and demands punishment for sin

 

v  To whom the Grace is being offered

 

NOTE:  In order to benefit from God’s Grace we must view ourselves as we truly are.

 

1.    Man is sinful and corrupt

2.    Man is unable to change his sinful nature

3.    Man is unable to pay the penalty of sin outside of his own death.

4.    Man is doomed to spend eternity in hell

 

II. WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF GRACE?

THE REDEMPTION OF FALLEN MAN

 

John 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

 

NOTE: God has one desire for fallen man, that mankind might be restored to proper fellowship with Him, and that is what Grace is all about.

 

1 Timothy 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

 

2 Peter 3:9 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.

 

   Without God’s Grace, man would be domed and lost forever.

 

III. TO WHOM IS THIS GRACE OFFERED?

ALL INCLUSIVE

 

NOTE: There is no one who is out of reach of God’s Grace.

 

Acts 2:21 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

 

Romans 5:18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.

 

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

 

NOTE: God’s Grace is not depended on our abilities.

 

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

 

Jeremiah 13:23 Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.

 

Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.

 

IV. WHAT IS THE DRIVING FORCE BEHIND GRACE?

GOD’S COMPASSION FOR US

 

NOTE: This is the hardest part of God’s Grace for me to understand, that God should love me at all, let alone enough to send His son to die in my place that I might be saved.

 

John 3:16 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.

 

Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

 

Ephesians 2:4-5 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

 

1 John 3:1-2 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.

 

V.  WHAT IS THE LONGEVITY OF GOD’S GRACE?

ETERNITY

 

   God’s Grace has provided us a place with Him throughout eternity.

 

John 14:1-6 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.  In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.  And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.  Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

 

   God not only wants us to be restored to fellowship with Him on this earth but He wants us to spend eternity with Him in Heaven.

 

   God’s Grace is so strong there is nothing on this earth that can take His Grace from us.

 

Romans 8:31-39 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?  He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?  Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth.  Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  As it is written, “For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”  Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.  For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

CONCLUSION: Have you taken advantage of God’s Grace or are you still struggling in your own strength and righteousness?

 

JANUARY, 22, 2017

 

THE WORK OF FAITH

 

SCRIPTURE READING: ROMANS 5:1-10

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: HEBREWS 11:6 

 

   But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

 

INTRO: Faith is a key ingredient in living a victorious Christian life.

 

   Four times the Word of God tells us “The just shall live by faith” Habakkuk 2:4; Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11 and Hebrews 10:38

 

   Our text tells us that without Faith we cannot please God.

 

   Why is Faith so important and what does it do for us?

 

   It is the object of our Faith that makes the difference.

 

Psalm 20:6-9 Now know I that the LORD saveth his anointed; he will hear him from his holy heaven with the saving strength of his right hand. Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God. They are brought down and fallen: but we are risen, and stand upright. Save, LORD: let the king hear us when we call.

 

   A little faith, placed in God, can accomplish much.

 

Matthew 17:20  And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.

 

   What is Mustard Seed Faith? It is a Faith that grows from a small beginning to become great faith and influences those around them.

 

Mark 4:30-32 And he said, Whereunto shall we liken the kingdom of God? or with what comparison shall we compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth: But when it is sown, it groweth up, and becometh greater than all herbs, and shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge under the shadow of it.

 

   Our prayer should be, “Lord, increase our Faith”.

 

   The work of Faith in the life of a Believer:

 

I. WE ARE JUSTIFIED BY FAITH

 

   Therefore being justified by faith…

 

NOTE: What does being justified mean?

 

Romans 5:18-19 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

 

Acts 13:39 And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.

 

1 Corinthians 6:11 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.

 

Galatians 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

 

II. WE HAVE PEACE WITH GOD THROUGH FAITH

 

   we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

 

   What does it mean to have Peace with God?

 

·         We have been restored to our proper relationship with God

·         We have been accepted by God

·         We have been free from God wrath against sin

 

Reconciliation: to restore to fellowship and harmony

 

Colossians 1:20 And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.

 

Hebrews 2:17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.

 

III. WE HAVE ACCESS TO GOD THROUGH FAITH

 

   By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand,

 

NOTE: Through our Faith in Jesus Christ, we have access to the Father for any need we might have.

 

Hebrews 4:14-16 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. 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. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

 

1 John 5:14-15 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

 

IV. WE HAVE VICTORY OVER OUR TRIALS THROUGH FAITH

 

   And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope:  And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.

NOTE: Faith will NOT keep us from facing trials

 

Psalm 34:19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.

 

Psalm 37:23-24 The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand.

 

Proverbs 24:16 For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again…

 

John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

 

CONCLUSION: Are we putting our Faith into man and the things of man, or into God and what He has done for us.

 

Romans 5:6-10 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. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

 

   When we allow the work of Faith into our life, all of Heaven is opened to us.

 

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