ONALASKA FIRST CHURCH OF GOD

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

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SERMONS FOR THE MONTH OF APRIL

APRIL 2017 SERMONS

  

APRIL 2, 2017

A

HOW GOOD IS YOUR PROMISE?”

 

SCRIPTURE READING: PSALM 15:1-5

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: Psalm 15:4b (GW)

   The one who makes a promise and does not break it, even though he is hurt by it.

 

INTRO: We are living in the days of broken promises

 

   All of us have suffered because of someone’s broken promise

 

   We ourselves may have been guilty of breaking our promise

 

ILL: Horton Hatches the Egg

 

   Have you ever made a promise that later you wished you had never made?

 

   How did you react when it came time to fulfill that promise?

 

   What does the Word of God tells us how we should respond to these promises we regret we have made?

 

I. GOD IS A GOD OF TRUTH

 

Deuteronomy 32:4  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.

 

   Men may be liars, but God can never lie, because truth is one of His attributes

 

Romans 3:4 (TLB) Of course not! Though everyone else in the world is a liar, God is not. Do you remember what the book of Psalms says about this? That God’s words will always prove true and right, no matter who questions them.

 

Hebrews 6:18a (GW) God did this so that we would be encouraged. God cannot lie when he takes an oath or makes a promise.

 

NOTE: If God is a God of Truth and we want close fellowship with Him, we must seek to be a person of Truth.

Proverbs 23:23a Buy the truth, and sell it not

 

Zechariah 8:16-17 These are the things that ye shall do; Speak ye every man the truth to his neighbour; execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates: And let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his neighbour; and love no false oath: for all these are things that I hate, saith the LORD.

 

II. THE DANGER OF MAKING A PROMISE

 

   A. PROMISES OR VOWS MADE TO GOD.

 

Proverbs 20:25 (TLB) It is foolish and rash to make a promise to the Lord before counting the cost.

 

NOTE: Too often we make rash promises to God that we regret later.

 

   God does not require us to make promises to Him, but if we do He expects us to fulfill the promise.

 

Deuteronomy 23:21-23 (TLB) "When you make a vow to the Lord, be prompt in doing whatever it is you promised him, for the Lord demands that you promptly fulfill your vows; it is a sin if you don’t. (But it is not a sin if you refrain from vowing!) Once you make the vow, you must be careful to do as you have said, for it was your own choice, and you have vowed to the Lord your God.

 

NOTE: We often make promises to God when we are facing difficulties, if we make these vows we are required to fulfill them.

 

Psalm 66:13-14 (GW) I will come into your temple with burnt offerings. I will keep my vows to you, the vows made by my lips and spoken by my {own} mouth when I was in trouble.

 

   B. PROMISES WE MAKE TO EACH OTHER

 

NOTE: If God expects us to keep our promises to Him, He will also expect us to keep our promises to each other.

 

Ecclesiastes 5:5 (TLB) It is far better not to say you’ll do something than to say you will and then not do it.

 

   What should we do with a forgotten promise?

 

Leviticus 5:4 (NKJV) Or if a person swears, speaking thoughtlessly with his lips to do evil or to do good, whatever it is that a man may pronounce by an oath, and he is unaware of it--when he realizes it, then he shall be guilty in any of these matters.

 

·         True Believers must be a person of integrity, their word must be their bond

 

Adam Clarke said, “He that will not be honest without an oath will not be honest with one.”

  

·         As a Believer when we make a promise to someone it is like making a promise to God

NOTE: Promise between David and Jonathan:

 

   1 Samuel 20:12-16 (BBE) And Jonathan said to David, May the Lord, the God of Israel, be witness; when I have had a chance of talking to my father, about this time tomorrow, if his feelings to David are good, will I not send and give you the news? May the Lord's punishment be on Jonathan, if it is my father's pleasure to do you evil and I do not give you word of it and send you away so that you may go in peace: and may the Lord be with you, as he has been with my father. And may you, while I am still living, O may you be kind to me, as the Lord is kind, and keep me from death! And let not your mercy ever be cut off from my family, even when the Lord has sent destruction on all David's haters, cutting them off from the face of the earth. And if it comes about that the name of Jonathan is cut off from the family of David, the Lord will make David responsible.

 

   David fulfilled his promise to Jonathan in 2 Samuel 9

 

·         Failure to keep one’s promise has caused great damage to the cause of Christ.

 

·         Why we are tempted to brake our promise

 

o    The Prospect of some worldly advantage

o    Fear

 

III. HOW DO WE KEEP FROM BREAKING OUR PROMISES?

 

   A. DON’T MAKE RASH PROMISES

 

   An old Hungarian proverb: “I find it very difficult for me to make you a promise; I find it very easy to keep my promise.”

 

   B. PUT OUR PROMISES INTO THE HAND OF GOD

 

   Trust God to provide a way for you to keep your promise

 

1 Peter 5:6-7 (TLB) If you will humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, in his good time he will lift you up. Let him have all your worries and cares, for he is always thinking about you and watching everything that concerns you.

 

CONCLUSION: If we want to dwell in God’s presence we must keep our promises regardless of the hardships we may be forced to face.

 

APRIL 9, 2017

 

“COMPASSION OR GREED”

 

SCRIPTURE READING: PSALM 15:1-5

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: Psalm 15:5 (BBE) He who does not put out his money at interest, or for payment give false decisions against men who have done no wrong. He who does these things will never be moved.

 

INTRO: David longed for God’s blessings in his life

 

   How we treat those who are less fortunate than ourselves determines on how close we walk with God.

 

   Are we driven by compassion or greed?

 

   If we are to be like Jesus we must be driven by compassion

 

I. CHARGING INTEREST TO THE LESS FORTUNATE IS A SIN

 

Psalm 15:5a He who does not put out his money at interest

 

 “The word neshech, which we translate usury, comes from nashach, to bite as a serpent; and here must signify that biting or devouring usury, which ruins the man who has it to pay”[1]

 

NOTE: In Biblical days those who needed to borrow were in a desperate situation, usually on the verge of being sold into slavery to satisfy their debts.

 

Exodus 22:25 (NRSV) If you lend money to my people, to the poor among you, you shall not deal with them as a creditor; you shall not exact interest from them.

 

Leviticus 25:35-38 (NKJV) 'If one of your brethren becomes poor, and falls into poverty among you, then you shall help him, like a stranger or a sojourner, that he may live with you.  Take no usury or interest from him; but fear your God, that your brother may live with you.  You shall not lend him your money for usury, nor lend him your food at a profit. I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan and to be your God.

 

   To charge interest at such a time as this is a sin

 

   The truly righteous would never exploit others in their time of need. Likewise, if we truly care about others, we will use our resources to help them, not take advantage of their unfortunate circumstances by seeking to profit financially at their expense.[2]

 

   A. JUDGMENT AWAITS THOSE WHO VIOLATE GOD WORD.

 

NOTE: Don’t yield to the temptation to profit by another’s misfortune 

 

Proverbs 28:8 (GW) Whoever becomes wealthy through {unfair} loans and interest collects them for the one who is kind to the poor.

 

Proverbs 22:16 (BBE)  He who is cruel to the poor for the purpose of increasing his profit, and he who gives to the man of wealth, will only come to be in need.

 

Isaiah 10:1-2 (BBE) Cursed are those who make evil decisions, and the writers who make the records of their cruel acts: Who do wrong to the poor in their cause, and take away the right of the crushed among my people, so that they may have the property of widows, and get under their power those who have no father.

 

   B. BLESSINGS WAITING FOR THOSE WHO HELP THE LESS FORTUNATE

 

Proverbs 11:24-26 (NRSV) Some give freely, yet grow all the richer; others withhold what is due, and only suffer want. A generous person will be enriched, and one who gives water will get water. The people curse those who hold back grain, but a blessing is on the head of those who sell it.

 

Proverbs 19:17 (NRSV) Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and will be repaid in full.

 

Proverbs 22:9 (NKJV) He who has a generous eye will be blessed, For he gives of his bread to the poor.

 

Luke 6:35 (KJV) But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.

 

II. HOW ARE WE TO REACT TO THOSE WHO SEEK OUR HELP

 

NOTE: God will hold us accountable for how we treat the less fortunate

 

Galatians 6:10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

 

NOTE: Let us help all who need help according to the uttermost of our power; but let the first objects of our regards be those who are of the household of faith—the members of the Church of Christ, who form one family, of which Jesus Christ is the head. Those have the first claims on our attention, but all others have their claims also, and therefore we should do good unto all.[3]   

 

NOTE: Not everyone who asks for help should be helped

 

   A. WE CANNOT HIDE FROM OUR RESPONSIBILITIES

 

Proverbs 3:27-28 (BBE) Do not keep back good from those who have a right to it, when it is in the power of your hand to do it. Say not to your neighbour, Go, and come again, and tomorrow I will give; when you have it by you at the time.

 

James 2:15-16 (BBE) If a brother or a sister is without clothing and in need of the day's food, And one of you says to them, Go in peace, be warm and full of food; but you do not give them the things of which their bodies have need, what profit is there in this?

 

James 4:17 (ASV) To him therefore that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.

   B. WE SHOULD GIVE JOYFULLY

 

Luke 6:38 (KJV) Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.

 

Acts 20:35 (KJV) I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.

 

2 Corinthians 9:6-7 (KJV) But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

 

CONCLUSION: It is not that we are to do it when it is convenient; or when it will advance the interest of a party; or when it may contribute to our fame; the rule is, that we are to do it when we have the opportunity. No matter how often that occurs; no matter how many objects of benevolence are presented-the more the better; no matter how much self-denial it may cost us; no matter how little fame we may get by it; still, if we have the opportunity to do good, we are to do it, and should be thankful for the privilege.[4]

 

APRIL 16, 2017

 

“THE GUARANTEE OF OUR RESURRECTION”

 

SCRIPTURE READING: 1 CORINTHIANS 15:12-22

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: 1 Corinthians 15:20 (TLB)

 

   But the fact is that Christ did actually rise from the dead and has become the first of millions who will come back to life again someday.

 

INTRO: In the Bible there are nine accounts of resurrections not counting Jesus’.

1.       The son of the widow of Zarephath:  1 Kings 17:22

2.       The son of the Shunammite: 2 Kings 4:35

3.       Dead man restored to life at the touch of Elisha’s bones: 2 Kings 13:21

4.       Jairus’ daughter: Matt. 9:35, Mark 5:42

5.       Son of the widow of Nain:  Luke 7:15

6.       Lazarus of Bethany: John 11:44

7.       Saints at the time of Christ’s crucifixion: Matt. 27:52

8.       Dorcas: Acts 9:40

9.       Eutychus: Acts 20:9-12

 

   Why didn’t those who were witness to these resurrections believe?

 

   Satan has blinded their eyes and stopped up their ears.

 

1 Corinthians 4:3-4 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

 

Isaiah 28:12 (NKJV) To whom He said, "This is the rest with which You may cause the weary to rest," And, "This is the refreshing"; Yet they would not hear.

 

Today it’s no difference; there is on group of people who see Easter as a time for egg hunts, bunny rabbits and special food.

 

   There will be people who will go to church, sing Easter song, hear a message that may or may not refer to the real meaning of Easter, without thinking once what the Resurrection of Jesus means to us.

 

I. WHAT MAKES CHRIST’S RESURRECTION SO IMPORTANT?

 

A.    THOSE WHO FAIL TO BELIEVE IN CHRIST’S RESURRECTION HAVE NO HOPE AFTER DEATH.

 

1 Corinthians 15:12-19 Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: 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. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.

 

NOTE: What makes the difference between Christ’s resurrection and the others found in the Bible?

 

   All these who had been resurrected from the dead would die again.

 

B.    THOSE WHO BELIEVE IN CHRIST’S RESURRECTION HAVE THE PROMISE OF ETERNAL LIFE.

 

   Christ’s resurrection is the guarantee of our resurrection.

 

   Christ was raised from the dead to live forever, and His resurrection is the guarantee that we, too, shall be raised from the dead.

 

   No person could want for a greater hope or for a greater promise.

 

Romans 8:11  "But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you"

 

II. UNDERSTANDING THE IMPORTANCE OF CHRIST’S DEATH

 

NOTE: To understand the importance of Christ’s resurrection we must understand the importance of his death.

 

   There would have been no resurrection if there had not been the crucifixion.

 

1 Corinthians 15:21-22 (KJV) 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.

 

A. ALL ARE SINNERS AND IN NEED OF SALVATION

 

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

 

Ezekiel 18:20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.

 

Romans 5:12 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:

 

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

 

B. CHRIST’S DEATH PROVIDED OUR SALVATION

 

1 Corinthians 15:3-4 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:

 

Hebrews 9:28 (GW) Likewise, Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of humanity, and after that he will appear a second time. This time he will not deal with sin, but he will save those who eagerly wait for him.

 

1 Peter 2:24 (GW) Christ carried our sins in his body on the cross so that freed from our sins, we could live a life that has God's approval. His wounds have healed you.

 

1 Peter 3:18 (GW) This is true because Christ suffered for our sins once. He was an innocent person, but he suffered for guilty people so that he could bring you to God. His body was put to death, but he was brought to life through his spirit.

 

CONCLUSION: Because of Jesus’ resurrection we too shall be resurrected unto eternal life.

 

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 (TLB) And now, dear brothers, I want you to know what happens to a Christian when he dies so that when it happens, you will not be full of sorrow, as those are who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and then came back to life again, we can also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him all the Christians who have died. I can tell you this directly from the Lord: that we who are still living when the Lord returns will not rise to meet him ahead of those who are in their graves. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a mighty shout and with the soul-stirring cry of the archangel and the great trumpet-call of God. And the believers who are dead will be the first to rise to meet the Lord. Then we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and remain with him forever. So comfort and encourage each other with this news.

 

APRIL 23, 2017

 

“THE MAJESTY OF GOD”

 

SCRIPTURE READING: PSALM 93:1-5

 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: 1 Chronicles 29:11

 

   Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all.

 

INTRO: Six Blind Men and an Elephant

 

   How can a mere human begin to describe the greatness of God?

 

   The English word majesty comes from the Latin word that means “Greatness or Dignity”.

 

   Kings and queens were called “Your Majesty” in recognition of their sovereignty.

 

   In a monarchy, the kings and queens had total control over their subjects.

 

   When we consider the Majesty of God we must recognize His Sovereignty and His government that is a Theocracy: complete control over everyone and everything.

 

   When we try to describe God we often use human elements; hands, eyes, the arm of the Lord.

 

   God is a spirit and is not limited by human extremities

 

NOTE: The attributes of God reveal His Majesty

 

   The more we understand the attributes of God, the more we will recognize His Majesty.

 

1.     GOD’S STRENGTH & POWER REVEALS HIS MAJESTY

 

Psalm 29:4 The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is full of majesty.

 

   It was the voice of God that created all things.

 

Nehemiah 9:6 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.

 

Hebrews 11:3 (KJV) Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

 

Jeremiah 32:17 Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee:

 

   Considering God’s power and authority, the word impossible does not exist.

 

Mark 10:27 And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.

 

   God does not become weary or tired.

 

Isaiah 40:28 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding.

 

NOTE: The majesty of God’s strength and power demands our worship

 

Revelation 4:11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

 

2.     GOD’S HOLINESS REVEALS HIS MAJESTY

 

Exodus 15:11 Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?

 

NOTE: As His power makes Him mighty, His holiness makes Him glorious.

 

Psalm 99:9 Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the LORD our God is holy.

 

Isaiah 6:3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.

 

Revelation 15:4 Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.

 

Psalm 99:9 Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the LORD our God is holy.

 

3.     GOD’S SOVEREIGNTY REVEALS HIS MAJESTY

 

Exodus 19:5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine:

 

Leviticus 25:23 The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me.

 

Psalm 24:1-2 The earth is the LORD'S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. For he hath founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods.

 

Psalm 50:10-11 For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills. I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine.

 

Haggai 2:8 The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, saith the LORD of hosts.

 

Romans 14:8  For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord's.

 

Ezekiel 18:4 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.

 

4.     GOD’S JUDGMENT REVEALS HIS MAJESTY

 

Isaiah 2:21 To go into the clefts of the rocks, and into the tops of the ragged rocks, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth.

 

Revelation 6:15-17 And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?

 

5.     GOD’S LOVE REVEAL HIS MAJESTY

 

·         The vastness of His love.

 

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.

 

·         The all-inclusiveness of His love

 

Matthew 9:13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

 

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.

 

CONCLUSION:  Truly we serve a majestic God, the only one worthy of our praise and worship.

 

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