The character and nature of Christ helps us mature and learn to live in love. We speak and understand as children until the Lord brings us up His love. Love leads us to be angry in the right way and to fight for true things. (1 Corinthians 13:1-11)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller, Pastor Steve Andrulonis
Sermon # 11253
11:00 AM on 4/30/2017
(He’s sharing a recap of the Marriage Getaway weekend).
Ps 8:4, this is us. This is human beings. There is an invisible atmosphere. 90% of the world believes in the spiritual atmosphere. It’s only in the West that people have concluded there is no supernatural, spiritual atmosphere. We were made for the wreck and the ruin. God then made man a little lower than Lucifer and his minions. It’s almost like God said I’m going down below you, taking the dust, breathing into it, and preparing this for myself. Then he made the family. This would be the important element. The whole earth is to be governed by this man/woman relationship.
Ps 8:2 I have a nine-month old granddaughter. She’s not so strong. She has a beautiful smile. She waves, and is starting to crawl. That’s how God ordains strength? Babes and sucklings, where do they come from? I think everyone here knows…it makes sense. This is what God has ordained. Strength to face the enemy. Marriage is a weapon of God against the enemy. God fights from presence, peace, and weakness. It’s not invention, muscle or carnal weapons. The Lord is there. We don’t get babes and sucklings with certain relationships. Certain relationships today that won’t speak to the enemy. It could be soon that a healthy family is a weird thing.
In the book, Onward, “We must call ourselves to a different sort of stability that is a sign of a kingdom. Family values are not the means to make it in America. A family defined by the gospel makes us stranger than we want to be.” We are the weapons of God’s warfare. He has set us here to have dominion. It may not be the majority soon.
Weekends like this are designed to show the character of what we are. If you never thought of what your marriage was, it’s a weapon. It’s a weapon in the hand of God and the devil fears it. Ephesus was a city dedicated to the fertility God, Diana. She looks like a bunch of bananas with a head on top. All the carnality and sensuality we are seeing in our age is not new. When Christianity came in this idea of family being the representation of the Trinity, staying together, chastity, saving yourself for marriage, it was very weird in the Roman empire.
Let’s celebrate our weirdness. We are made for this time and purpose. Lights still shine and that’s what we are here for.
At the end of June we have our Convention here. Be thinking about 4,000 people coming. We gather and have meetings throughout the week. Missionaries come from India, Russia, Finland, Poland, Argentine, and Latin America. Put that in your calendar and enjoy that. That’s a great blessing.
The H.S. working in your life. Father, Son and H.S. How many Gods do we have? One and three persons. Because you are born again, the H.S. is in your life. The H.S. is your Comforter, teacher, guide, your counselor, and minister to you through your life. He’ll show us Christ now in this life time. Have you see Christ lately? Have you seen Christ in life? Blessed are the pure in heart. They shall see God. Have you seen God? I know you have a good attitude this morning. How many don’t want to talk to anybody or see anybody?! Shy people, maybe withdrawn. I want to be invisible! I have at times been one of them. I want on purpose to have a good attitude, be thankful and love people.
1 Cor 13. I love it when we can feel and sense the Spirit of God in our lives. I love it when we can feel and sense the Spirit of God in church. And that God really cares about me. I love it when we can focus and concentrate on God and believe God has something to say to us. Whether I’m 10 years old – and most of them are in the Sunday school – or 90 years of age, God is caring and he guides and leads us by the H.S. in his heart and mind for us. He loves us and he is the God of grace.
As P. Steve mentioned we had a marriage weekend and I want to share some things about married life that relates to that deeper principle that has to be in all of our lives.
Eph 4:2 Forbearance. Forbearing one another in the church. My wife and I are from different places and we have different makeups. I brought in my garage coat which is my favorite coat! Who knows how old it is or where it came from. She doesn’t want this in the house! I think it came from John Odahara. Why do I like it? I don’t know. Can any of the guys identify? There are things particular about us. In a marriage, there are things that are embarrassing or difficult or just differences we have. I want to use my coat to represent in a marriage there can be differences but they are not that important.
Ec. 7:9 says anger is in the bosom of the fool. It’s close to my mouth, my emotions, and my way of thinking. Have you ever met an angry man? On the beltway, you don’t know why he’s so angry, making gestures through the window and yelling. Does he really have to be so angry?
Prov 16:32 He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty. Slow. Maybe it would be better to have my anger packaged and put down in the cellar.
Anger is important in C. life, Ps 139. Perfect hatred because of perfect love. Some people have a hard time digesting that. A five year old boy is told don’t go in the street, listen to your father and he does and gets hurt. Why did you do it? You’re angry about it but what is it based on? Love. I want the best for my son. I don’t want him to be hurt. Jesus says the devil comes to kill, destroy, and steal. Are you angry about that? I’m angry about people overdosing on drugs, suicide, many things but my anger is packaged and it’s slow. I’m slow to anger. It’s not in my bosom. It exists and it’s very good. That coat and the fight that can happen in a marriage over a coat is not worthy of our honor and our design and our high calling. We have to forbear. The Greek word means holding back. It means there is a forbearance. The word “gentleness” is in the margin. Forbearing in the King James is substituted by the revised version as holding up under, patient, or holding up under evil. We said in the marriage getaway that selecting a Christmas tree has been where I enter into the project knowing it’s going to be a lot of work, might take a lot of time, may be disagreement, but I’m going to do my best in forbearing and not get in a fight over a Christmas tree and Christmas season… I know the whole thing. One couple said to us that our first Christmas tree was thrown down the staircase! Do you understand what I mean by the coat? Whether it’s used cars – we have a lot of family stories because we bought diesel cars in the winter. We should go to the in-laws but it doesn’t start because the fuel gelled up because we have a diesel car. Vacation time, sticky floors in the hotel room. For me it’s not a problem but my wife is not that way. It is a problem for me too I suppose. You get the idea. Forbearance. Big word.
Luther said the heart of fools is in their mouth, but the mouth of the wise is in their heart. The heart in one’s mouth means to speak without thinking as angry people usually do. Anger is to be slow. You get angry at the golf course, in traffic, at work, at the breakfast table or wake up as an angry person. There is a better way. (He’s reading jokes about marriage).
1 Cor 13. Gifts are mentioned. And the Corinthians had all the gifts. Just because I have the gifts of the Spirit, it doesn’t mean I have the fruit of the Spirit. The Spirit can use us in various ways even speaking with tongues of men but it might be I don’t have the fruit of the Spirit which is charity or AGAPE. If so, I become sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal.
1 Cor 13:1-2. I could know the Bible, be a preacher, but do I know God as the God of love in my life. I can pray and do all kinds of things but do I have the kind of love this chapter is describing? This chapter deals with our character and nature as it is defined here.
vs. 3. A man could be like Warren Buffet and Bill Gates and give billions of dollars away but is it motivated by love? I do not know. I can’t judge people. We could give away all our goods and not have love. It also says I could give my body to be burned. Nero, the Caesar, burned Christians and used them as torches. He put tar and pitch on them and lit them on fire. I could give my body to be burned even like the Buddhist monk. In the Vietnam War, he did it in protest and lit himself on fire but did he have AGAPE love? You could sacrifice a lot but not have love. I’m hungry for it, believe in it. We have this capacity for God and his love.
vs. 4. Sixteen things mentioned in 4-8.
vs. 5. We could say with my wife, here is my coat. I can’t bring it into the house. I could sneak it in, but it would be thrown out. Whether it’s your toothpaste or refrigerator or things, what is love? How much does love endure? How much can it bear? When I was a child I thought as a child,
vs. 11. Who? Paul is writing. Paul when were you a child? I mean I was a child when I was a Pharisee. Weren’t you a man when you were a Pharisee? My doctrine, my way of life, my anger, my reaction, my way of thinking about things. Tell us Paul about being a child. I spoke as a child. I got a coat issue in my marriage. Housing, clutter, plumbing crisis, no gas in the car, kids problems, children, teens, and when I was a child I spoke as a child. What is lacking in a child’s vocabulary? Depth. There isn’t love. Sure there is love as in a child’s life and you are loving them and they love back but in a time of crisis or discipline, the child is angry. You can’t use your IPhone, call your friend, or watch that movie. How do they process it? Often it is emotional and they speak like children. Heart of the fool in bosom. Do adults speak like children? He gets angry about the lousy coat. Is it a big issue? Can it produce a crisis in my relationship with my brother or sister? Let’s up the ante a little. There is a hundred thousand dollars on the stage. Is that a reason to get angry? I’ve been pastoring for more than 40 years. I was involved in a case where a man stole $4 million from him. I was there with the man. I did not know if he was saved. He had a gun in his glove compartment driving around. He said I’m so angry. He plotted to kill the man. I said you can’t do that. Your wife and children are important. You cannot live on the basis of anger. The money is so much. I don’t have a future. Really? Losing a precious and valuable thing and your life is not bigger than that? Agape love bears all things, believes all things, and hopes all things. I’m not buying it as platitude or a phrase you’re quoting. 4 million is 4 million. I don’t want those to be nice words but reality for us. I don’t want someone to just listen and patch on a Bible verse. I would like J.C. to be real in our lives. The measure I’m able to endure, forbear, love, give, and know God and when we are children, Paul is saying I can’t process this life in those areas. I’m a child. I can’t process it. Children, their vision is like the swing set, bedroom, television, path to school bus, back home and that’s their vision. Do you know where you live? I memorized the street. Do you know where Baltimore is? Maryland? The U.S. in the context of the world, planet Earth in the galaxy, the solar system in our galaxy, and the solar system in the universe. No. I know where my teddy bear is! I speak as a child. Road rage people are dead at the end of the day. Their anger governs their speech and decisions. You cannot let your anger run your life. You can’t be cursing and swearing and living in emotions unless we agree I will be a child and a fool.
vs. 11. Pharisees didn’t like Jesus. They spoke like children and understood and thought like children. Jesus healed a woman bent over for 18 years by the devil. Jesus came and healed her. The Pharisees said you can’t do that. It’s the Sabbath day. If your sheep falls into a ditch you will pull them out. How much more this child of Abraham released from the devil on the Sabbath day. Denominations, religious people, non- denominations, that’s what the church may say and get it wrong because we are childish in our understanding of love. Childish in our understanding of our world view. There are people who need to mature. The way you mature like the folks on the stage Friday night. We had three couples. I was so blessed by the Spirit working in their life. Effort of working through their problems. These issues that happen in life whether in a marriage or a church, these things are purposed by God so we would learn to grow up in him and become more like God and care about the things he cares about. What does it profit if you gain 4 million back and lose your own soul? What does it profit if you get revenge and murder the man and end up in prison or go away with it? Cain was plagued his whole life though he built a city. Take your city, your murder, your own life. It’s empty because no love. God will take the murderer and restore him and he’ll lie down in peace. One man asked, do murderers go to heaven? He said I don’t want to go there. I said you can be with murderers in heaven or hell. Which one? By the way, you also have it in your heart, too. Maybe by way of education and circumstances you’ve never done it, but you’re just as bad as those people who are lost or in hell. How do I go from a child to a man?
vs. 11. I don’t think having a high school education will make me a man. I don’t think going into the Marine Corps will make a man a man. No evidence of macho manhood men that sleep around. That’s part of our animal nature. For a man to have one woman in his life or say I can forebear and handle this thing. I don’t think a college education makes a man a man or an adult or even living in a good family. It will help but it’s when you walk with God. The Holy Spirit says follow me. You get your big man pants on and say I’ll trust you. When God starts working in your heart and mind and you leave your playground area and you’re whining and crying because the cookies are not soft or whatever the details. I’m saying it with us. You have no idea how I would love to be a man. Like Paul is saying when I became a man. When we become men of God, men and women of God and there is some character in us. The Holy Spirit is sent into the world so we would grow up and get bigger in our hearts and minds. Get beyond the petty things and learn to forgive a lot.
Marriage is two people constantly forgiving each other Billy Graham said.
This book. I won’t get the instruction in the world or university or on the street or barber shop or People Magazine or movies or Hollywood or “Father Knows Best” or Leave it to Beaver.” There was a moral message in there but unless I have the H.S. and this book in my life. Meditate on it and memorize it. Embrace it and obey it. Apply it vigorously in your heart and life. People.
Great question Friday night about communicating with your husband or wife. What happens if you don’t have anything to say to your husband or wife? One of the folks said do something for God. Follow God. Do something together. Go visit someone. Go to a nursing home. Go in the café or go on a mission. You’ll start talking about God and his purpose. Body life. How do I become a man? By the Holy Spirit, the Word of God and the Body of Christ. Any of those areas I back off, I back off in an area where I want to be a child. We had one student who said I miss depression. What do you mean? Good old fashion depression. Three weeks by myself. I can’t do it anymore. I know I have to be Spirit filled. I have to live with joy and faith and peace in my heart. I am not my own. I am bought with a price.
There is another life to live. I hope some of the things will hit home to you. I want to challenge you not to condemn but encourage because there is so much for us in Christ.
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