Even in desperate times, the Lord knows His thoughts toward us. They are thoughts of peace and purpose. He longs to draw into seeking Him with all of our hearts in His House. (Jeremiah 7:8-12; Jeremiah 29:10-13)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
Sermon # 11369
11:00 AM on 11/19/2017
The message is on thanksgiving and prayer today. That is our theme.
I have a book written by a Greater Grace pastor by P. Carl Silva in India. “Praying with power.” Lesson 14. I recommend the book. We ordered a bunch of them so they will be coming into our bookstore. I want to give this one to Jensen as a gift. Then I won’t have any. There’s not a more important teaching in the entire world than for a Christian to learn how to pray. Not only learn how to pray but with power. To pray led by the H.S. to pray to get prayers answered. There are some things hidden and fenced in that you can’t figure out. God says call unto me for help in prayer. I will answer you and show you great and mighty things I will do.”
I asked P. Andrulonis to make a list of houses that people go to. People go to the church house but they might also go to the frat house, the crap house, the prison house, the whore house, the mansion house, the sick house, the orphan house, the pub house, the gambling house, the outhouse, but people go to these houses and they don’t go to the church house. That’s where you came today. This is the church house. Never stop going to the church house. Those other houses some of them are obviously, we’ll look at it in a minute, are obviously wrong. They are traps. Places of ill will and harm and contention and anger and hatred and addiction and fear and guilt. But the house of God, God’s house we’ll talk about it.
Jer. 7. In Jeremiah, God is angry with Israel. Israel is going into captivity. What did Israel do but basically three kinds of sins: Israel was idolatrous; Israel had social injustice; and Israel had religious hypocrisy. Those are big words. There’s hypocrisy but it should not be in God’s house. Idolatry, but it should not be in God’s house. Injustice, lying, stealing, cheating, contracts are broken. We are concerned about the future of our country. The health club. That’s not a bad place but can I go there instead of the house of God? This is the problem. 51% of Americans will never step inside a church. You have to say maybe there’s good reason. On the other hand, when there is a church and the H.S. is moving and he moves in your heart, you start to think with God and to read this book. God speaks to you. This is the house I want to go to.
Jer 7:8 Garbage. Trash. Go ahead. Say it out loud. Garbage, lies, hypocrisy, rubbish in Britain. You got to think with God. You and I have to learn to think with God. Garbage and trash and lies. Huh? You see some TV show and someone is being interviewed. They are talking garbage. I have no time for garbage. This is verse 8. Lying words that cannot profit. Words that don’t get anywhere.
vs. 9 Adultery. I don’t know how you men or women handle it. Have no answer except God for the heart of man. Learn to commune with God. God will teach you. If he wants us to be holy, he can make that happen. If you ever get tempted, go to a nursing home and look at an old person. There it is. That’s the end game. One man said I want to get married. I said I hope that’s God. You are so old and the woman you marry will be so old, just practice pushing a wheel chair. If it’s God, it’s blessed. If not, you better get used to it. You don’t live by lust but by the Spirit. You don’t do this by a whim. Living by a whim.
vs. 9-10. They come where? In this house, in God’s house and at the same time practicing idolatry. Like a guy going to the whore house and then comes to the church house. God’s angry about it.
vs. 11. Thieves. Jesus used this verse in Jn 2. He used that verse it’s a den of thieves and robbers. Lord, in the church of Christ it is our belief, our prayer that the H.S. would be moving and leading people to glorify you and live in the right way. Your house is called a house of prayer, of holiness, of quietness. I know many of you that’s how you come here. You come to listen. We would gather in his name and listen to what the Bible is saying. We would have the house of God high priority on our list. I am what I am by the grace of God but I learned so much directly from you and the Holy Spirit and your people, the Body of Christ. I learned so much from my teachers, from church history, from my pastor, Dr. Stevens. It’s an honor. It’s not a den of thieves and robbers. It’s a sacred place. It’s God’s house.
vs. 12. They set it up in Shiloh. It became just nothing. Nothing was there. I will do the same thing to the city of Jerusalem, wiped clean like a platter. Like when you do your dishes. Wipe it clean. Now he’s angry but go to the good news in Jer. 29. They go into captivity for 70 years. Communism lasted 70 years. Babylonian empire was 70 years. When that was done, the empire was done. It only served his purpose. That was the idea.
Jer. 29:10 I’d like to take out a map and go over more of this with you but we don’t have the time. My house is a den of thieves and robbers and adultery and murder. The blood of the innocents are on your skirts. I can’t help but think of abortion in our country. Innocent babies and they are murdered. Men go scot free regarding this issue but the man says to the woman I want you to get an abortion. This house is not God’s house. You go to God’s house and get God’s mind. You be a man and take responsibility. You’re not to sleep with women unless you are married to them. God knows best. You go to other houses and have you party and God is angry about it. After 70 years, I will visit you. Those words are awesome. I will be present with you. I will move you. I will perform my good word toward you. Bring you back to Jerusalem.
It is hard to figure out God because he’s angry. That’s a real thing. We should understand that in our mind and hearts. Anger is a real part of reality. You know it in your own life. Let’s all be happy. No, someone just stole my lunch. I want to know who stole my lunch and I want to eat lunch today. If you are violated or some innocent person is taken advantage of or life is snuffed out on the street. That is part of the nature of God. How can he not be angry when his nature is violated and we suffer as a result of it? Thieves, murder, destruction, sadness, depression, broken hearts. You understand that.
vs. 11. God says he puts it in human language. I know the thoughts I think about you. He’s self-aware. He’s aware of himself of course and his plan, his thoughts regarding Israel. Israel is a very real country, very real group of people. This has an application for us as well. God is saying I’m dealing with you because I know you are suffering. I want you to know how I’m thinking. End game. I have thoughts of peace not of evil. To give you an expected end. When we look at the Cross over there, we understand this. He must have a plan for us if he gave his Son. He must have thoughts of peace for us, not judgment, but thoughts of grace and love. He must love us. He didn’t make us to destroy us. He made us to nurture, forgive, love, care for us. I have an expected end. An ultimate goal for you. I’m going to bring the Messiah into the world. The kingdom of heaven is going to come on the earth through the Messiah.
Is 2:4 all the nations will be drawn in the millennial reign. Beat your swords into plowshares. No more war. I know what I have planned for you. Here we are seeking it, wanting it and learning it. We have anticipation for what God wants to do with us. It’s like our life and what God has for us. These other houses we are talking about, these other places people go to they don’t go to the house of God. They don’t know their end goal. What is the end goal of the casino, or frat house or prison house? Of these houses. God is saying my house you have an end game there. I have blessing, great blessing for you. I am not against you. I’m for you.
I want you to be blessed and increase, Jn 10 abundant life. I want to give you my wisdom. Your wisdom, God? Eyes, wisdom from above. I want my word to go in your heart. How easy it is to walk with me. Come learn of me. I am meek and lowly. These other places are hard. They start out with a big deal and end up with a great deal. Drug dealer says I got something for you. It’s free. Second time it is free. Now they got you. There isn’t much here for my natural man but there is something here in the Spirit. There isn’t much here to stimulate and titillate me sensually but something here draws me spiritually to the living God, the holy God and gives me an anticipated conclusion to the things.
Someone said what do you do for work? P. Scibelli said nothing. I don’t have to be somebody in this world because I got something that’s hard to explain to you. I got something going on. I anticipate it. This is part of prayer. It’s part of your walk. We went to Owings Mills yesterday to pray and think about starting a church there. Anticipating people getting saved. Teens getting a word. Thinking about what God can do in another part of Baltimore City. Seeking God in it in a life of faith. Sometimes I get up in the morning and have a simple prayer. Father, bless my prayer. Lead me in prayer. Teach me pray. I get quiet and think what God could do in prayer.
vs. 12-13. Let me close with testimony. We are in Christian work and talk to people all the time, – prayer requests, and phone calls. We have the language and the work that we do. Sometimes I have to step back from it all and think about it with God and ask God to help me. I don’t want to get into it and learn the language and be talking and just do it that way. I want to be Spirit filled. I’d like God to teach me, refresh me, and restore my soul. I want my prayers to be with all my heart.
Lord, I ask you to bless Uncle Bobbie and Aunt Jemima and Debbie and Phil and this country and that country in Jesus’ name. The Lord says, are you serious about Uncle Bobbie? No, not really. Then why did you say it? I get in the habit of doing it. I guess. Right Lord? If you seek me with all your heart. I walk around thinking my heart is not in it. I think about Uncle Bob. Am I serious about it? By the way, I don’t have an Uncle Bob. Do I want him blessed? What’s in my heart?
How about jealousy in my heart. Can you pray for anyone who has a great big blessing in their life and there’s a little bit of jealousy? You say a prayer but it doesn’t mean much. God isn’t in it. I have to say God, my heart really isn’t in it. That’s not the point. The point is deeper. When we seek God.
I was thinking when Jesus was with his disciples and there’s a little camp fire and time to go to sleep. It’s not written this way but he gets off in the night and goes off and prays. Why? Cause he’s seeking God. He’s always with God. He’s a human being. He’s saying I am so much after my Father. I’m going to seek him, I’m going to find him. I love him. This relationship with my Father is my very life. It’s the essence of everything I am and do. I want to see my Father do it. My Father is my strength. The Holy Spirit giving me conviction. My Father is leading me. I’m angry about this hypocrisy. My Father is showing me. I’m manifesting the KOG on the earth through my Father. I seek him with all my heart.
Maybe we don’t do that. Maybe I need to think about it. Go for a walk and am I going to talk to God and approach God? God who made the sky and the birds and bacteria and me and I can think like this. I can come before God. Whatever I ask in his name he will hear me when I seek him with all my heart. In other words, cut the crap. Shake it off. What’s the big deal?
This literally happened to me in Europe. A man got ripped off 4 million euros, more than 4 million dollars. He was so angry he wanted to kidnap the guy and kill him. Probably it wasn’t his 4 million anyway. I said you cannot do that. It doesn’t matter. Life is more than money, our food and clothing, our reputation, our name. Our life is God. God made us.
When I seek him with all my heart, you will find me when you search for me with all my heart. I lost my car keys. I have to go find them. What are you looking for? Car keys. When I find them I know them. I found them. Lisa! It’s not your fault after all! I found them. When you seek for God and you find him, you know you got him. He lets you know.
Thank you, Lord. I can do it again. I’m restored. I can live still. I can love, forgive. Maybe the 4 million wasn’t mine anyway. I got my heavenly Father and he can give me what I need. We have found the living God.
I want to encourage you in this week of thanksgiving and prayer and challenging you. You don’t need long religious prayers but prayer where seeking him with all your heart. God will show you and teach you. If God adds to you, you’ll say God did answer me, he did help me and bless me. When we ask in secret he will do it publicly, outwardly in Mt. 6:6.
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