To see the Kingdom of God, we must be converted into children who allow themselves to be fastened to Christ. His words are driven deep into hearts and make us steadfast and immovable. (Matthew 18:1-3; Deuteronomy 6:7-14)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
Sermon # 11271
7:30 PM on 5/31/2017
Mt. 18:1 Children. Jesus Christ came into this world and I love that verse where there was a boy who had been demonized since a child, and the disciples were trying to cast the demons out and couldn’t. Christ cast them out. Why couldn’t we do it? This kind comes out by prayer and fasting. When I read that last night, my eyes were drawn to “this kind.” Are there different kinds of demons? Apparently. When Jesus was in the world he saw more than the material world. He came from heaven.
He saw and knew what angels were but also said in Lk 10, I saw Satan fall like lightning to the earth. Most theologians believe Lucifer was cast to the earth before God made Adam and Eve. We believe this is really God’s Word. That this is the right way of understanding the world we live in. That there is heaven and Christ came from there. There is hell and people do go there. When Christ died on the cross, so much happened. Imagine a man hanging on a cross who is more than man but is God who became a man so we would not pay for our sin but our sins would be taken away. We would be born of the Spirit, and given the capability of understanding this world in some measure the way it is in truth.
Christ gives us insight in Mt. 18:1. The kingdom of the world and all the leaders, power, money, counsel, wisdom of the world and ways of the world.
Jer 10 when they made idols, they fastened them with nails so they wouldn’t fall down. So a hurricane couldn’t take it out or the wind or just gravity. That is happening in our world today. People are fastening lies with nails. They don’t want their lies to fall down. They want it to stand and be there. There are many of them. There is a belief there are aliens in another part of the universe. To build my life on that would be a great error when I can build my life on God. Some don’t want to believe in God. They want to believe in aliens. If I had my choice, I’d bank on God. It’s a lot better and surer. The theory of evolution they are fastening with nails so it can’t fall down. Transgender issues. How active people are to fasten these ideas with nails. We aren’t any better than anyone in the world but for us we have this message.
vs. 2. Here is a big man, leader, big muscle bound Olympian or a smart mathematician or big IT guy or big president or parliamentarian. Become like a little child.
vs. 3. Years ago we saw Tim Teboe on the football field and knew his parents were missionaries in the Philippines. He was good in university football but in NFL he didn’t do very well. In his biography and life there is something childlike.
vs. 3. What is it about little children? The ones on the stage are not little children anymore. They are becoming adults. We are with them in those changes. They have changes in mind, heart, body. We are caring about them. We want them to be adults but there is something about us that must be childlike. A child has to trust to survive. Needs an adult, a hero, a parent. A child needs a hand, care, and understanding. A child is dependent. A child also is kind of dumb. They don’t know what the beltway is or four cylinders or five. They don’t really know what USA is, what this information is that many of us have and consider common. They are naïve but are trusting and willing to believe and very open to being loved. Love a child and a child will love back. We have become like children. We enter into the kingdom that I share with us. The anointing, the Spirit. The child is teachable. They are wired this way. It’s how God ordained it so they can survive. Don’t drink the Clorox; it’s poison. Don’t get near that dog; it might bite you. Follow me closely. This conversion from being big and strong and powerful is important to J.C. He knows we cannot make it. We will not understand it or grow in it. We will not get ahold of it or know our heavenly Father unless that dependence on God becomes a fresh thing to us. At a family table, sometimes we may have those stories. You have a few children and a mom and dad and talking and it’s very relaxed. The children feel secure and there is love and joy and connection. The same thing must be happening in our life spiritually where we’re sitting at God’s table.
I read about a six year old boy, Curtis, and his sister, Carissa. The dad said Curtis you have to serve the girls first. He said go ahead. What piece do you want of the plate of chicken? She said I’d like the foot. He looked at the dad and Carissa and said mother doesn’t cook the foot. Well, where is it she said. I don’t know. It’s not on the plate. Choose a piece. She studied the plate and said give me the hand. He said Carissa, chickens don’t have hands. They have wings. I hate the wing, Curtis. Give me the head. Realizing his irritation with her in the absence of a foot or hand or head, give me the belly button. He reached for a piece of chicken and gave her the breast which is closest to the belly button he could give.
Plain old crazy family times. Have you had any? Have you had those when growing up? Did you sense what it is? They should go on. It should be a life of joy, connection, of peace, of love, of care. Christ said it’s not who is the greatest and it’s not who is the most important. It isn’t I have it my way all the time or you have it your way. We know how human beings can be. We have a big challenge raising families, of loving and caring. We have a big responsibility in our country. We see a lot of nails going in lies.
I want to read one more nail verse from Ec. 12:11. If we could take a minute and look at this. One shepherd. Who is that? Jesus Christ. What does he give? Nails. What is he assembling? A human being. Making and leading human beings so they don’t have to run around and try to fasten and make sure things don’t fall down. Let all the lies be blown away. I don’t have any interest in upholding a lie. A lie is not my friend. It won’t help me or my children. Many times children recognize there is something artificial or phony. What is needed is the masters of assembly. What else is he assembling? The church. People. Us. If God puts us together, let’s not have any lie tear us apart. If God has given you an 8th grader, it is not easy. It’s challenging in many ways. The words of the wise are as goads. These fastening elements in the tabernacle. They go into the heart, into your life and you start to live by them. They produce something beautiful in your heart. Peace in your heart. Contentment. Linking one part with another part. They fasten truth with truth. You become a worshipper of God. You become like a priest in your household or a worshipper of God with your friends. Life is more than flesh and blood. Life is short you know. It’s not that long. Life ends. We should put our treasure there. A wise man builds his life on a rock and no matter what happens, it’s not torn down. Masters of assembly, Jesus Christ. Fastens us with truth. We are able to say 40 years plus and some longer with a beautiful contentment. Thank you, Jesus. Death is ok. That’s part of the plan. You have been preparing me with nails. Nails that go in my life and heart build us up and encourage us. This is our heritage or blessing. We are a family. This funny story about the chicken and maybe I haven’t had those in my childhood but I should have them in my adulthood. Light hearted. Fellowship of love. Life is simple and easy and not complicated. Ask a child if their life is complicated and they don’t know what it means. It’s so simple for a child. Why wouldn’t it be the same if we are children of the kingdom of God? If I forsake the assembly, if I don’t have some word coming to my heart by the H.S., a word of instruction, what will I have? I‘ll go elsewhere like Israel. She put on these harlot clothes. She goes out and is chasing her lovers in Jeremiah. Why trimmest thou thy way to seek for your lovers? Looking beautiful or handsome to look for your lovers. This is what God says. When your lovers don’t care about you. They can throw you out. They don’t love you or care for you. You fasten it with nails so it doesn’t move. Let it all go. Seek God and his R. Seek his R. This is the gift. The H.S. gives us R. It’s an amazing thing. Not sin, R. R delivers from death. It increases my life. It’s the answer for my emptiness. R satisfies me better than any bottle, more than loneliness, emptiness. R satisfies the believer. Seek his kingdom and his R.
When you are with your children in De 6, you teach your children diligently.
vs. 7. I’ll put in there eating chicken. She asked for the foot and hand and head and you are laughing. It’s a precious time in your family. When you are sitting in your house, and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You are teaching diligently. It means on purpose. You do remember a few things your parents said at the swing set, the pool, in the car. There is something you remember that your parents taught you. This is how the Jewish parents teach their children. At the mall, in the parking lot, in a movie or before or after, walking in the garden, all of these settings. Diligently bind them for a sign upon thine hand. What sign? Many things we could talk about to our kids. Many things we bind on our hand and around our neck.
vs. 8-10. Many of our kids have received something they never built, benefits from us. They never built the things they are receiving or inheriting.
vs. 11. Beware lest you forget the Lord. The reason you are alive, it’s the Lord. The reason you have parents, it’s the Lord. The reason you as a parent had parents, that’s the Lord. Food in the refrigerator, that’s the lord. People dropping dead across our country from drugs. I’m sorry if anyone had that in your family or friendship. It’s all around us. Fentanyl is very strong killing people. God forbid these kind of people. We have a teaching and we care. Victorian houses I remember reading in the 19th century, you know what they are? Certain kind of architecture and alcoholism was a big problem. Built big homes so the dads would stay home and not go out and drink. Had a den, nook and cranny, a place to have in the house. Alcohol was ravening families when a family is a great gift.
Jewish people were told this portion here in vs. 13-14. The gods of the people round about you. We are careful, determined, focused and spiritually alive. I don’t have any interest in any other god or finding some other way of life.
We have found the way and it is eternal in its nature. The Holy Spirit is flowing and ministering to us. Yes there is failure but also grace. There is confusion but also correction. That cannot keep the idol standing straight up. The emptiness will invade it. The lie will be known for what it is. The shepherd gives us nails and fastens our life to God and his nature.
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