Who has the words of life? Christ does. He spoke them and we must hear them. Let them go deep into our hearts and mind to give us strength and courage. John 6:60-68
Speaker(s): Pastor Steven Scibelli
Sermon # 11397
11:00 AM on 1/7/2018
Jn. 6:60-68, How many years have you been in the ministry? (Khalenbacks). Fifty-six years in this church. Can you imagine that? Fifty-six years in the ministry. Tonight P. Lou will share on something. He didn’t know that.
Tonight we will have a healing service, healing and prayer for the sick. This is an amazing portion of Scripture. It’s such a touching, personal message. What I love about this portion of Scripture is there is a number of principles there. The words being spiritual not fleshly; the words being life and not death; the words being eternal not temporal, the words to believe not to live in unbelief; the words that are personal and not abstract or general and words that draw you. They said we are going to stay with you. This is an amazing portion in regard to the word. Peter gave an incredible answer to this. To whom shall we go? Are you with me this morning? There was a great miracle. We love when God does miracles but it didn’t sustain them. He did the miracle of the loaves. It could have been 8,000 people fed with a little boy. Then he preached a great message. It was called the bread of life. He brought in a great test. Eat my flesh and drink my blood. As they were listening, they became offended, became hard, murmured, complained ad said we are out of here. We’re leaving. We cannot take this. They just had a great miracle and he preaches this message, and a great test and a great departure, leaving great disciples. It went from 8,000 to 12. Can you imagine? I told a person that had a church of 2,000, I can bring your church down to 200 in a month. What do you mean? You never preach about sin, evangelism, Body life, you never elevate the Bible. I would never want to do that but I thought they weren’t listening to anything that has depth. Many people are drawn to that. I don’t want to be in a place where I’m challenged and hear truth. Please don’t put a preacher in my life that could disturb that. They were all gone. Jesus said one of you is a devil. He didn’t stop there. Don’t you want to hang on to everybody? Why not bring in a different message? Peter said to whom shall we go? You have the rhemas or personal words of eternal life. Where are we going to go?
I was out evangelizing yesterday and its awesome how God keeps you warm. I met two people who used to be in the ministry and worked for the ministry. They said are you still doing this? I was very kind, very gentle and loving.
You got saved because someone did this or heard it on the radio or television. You heard it someplace. Something happened personally. How God desires to speak to me personally. Can you say that to yourself? God wants to speak to me personally. Some of you can’t say that. I think it’s amazing an eternal God is personal. A lot of religions around the world talk of God being eternal but we never grasp the aspect of him being personal.
Listen to this poem. I didn’t write it. It’s called “My Bible and I.” “We travel together my Bible and I, through all kinds of weather with smile or sigh. In sorrow or sunshine, in tempest or calm, your friendship unchanging, my lamp and my song. We travel together my Bible and I, when life had grown weary and even death was nigh; but all through the darkness of midst or wrong, I found there a solace of prayer and a plan. So now who shall part us my Bible and I? Shall isms or schisms or new lights who try; shall shadow or substance or stone for good bread, supplant your sound wisdom and give folly instead? Oh no, my dear Bible, exponent of light, the sword of the Spirit put error to flight. And still through life’s journey until my last sigh, we’ll travel together my Bible and I.”
I love that. We’re not talking about dead letter or white pages with black print on them. We’re talking about the life of God.
Jesus said in the beginning was the Word and the word was with God and the Word was God in Jn 1:1. That’s what the Bible says. Not religion or dead letter.
Ps 40:7-8 Lo, I come in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will.
Heb 10:7-8, Jn 5:39. You search the Scriptures and in them you think you have eternal life but you won’t come to me. You can know the Bible but miss the person of the Bible. Jesus was walking on the road to Emmaus and the two disciples were going opposite the way God told them to go. He walked alongside them and said what manner of conversation are you having? We thought Jesus of Nazareth would deliver us. It says their hearts were open and they knew him. And he vanished from their sight to keep them hungry and going.
Jesus in Rev 19:13 his name is called Word of God. Name written on his thigh saying he’s the Word of God. The importance of the Bible eternally and personally in our lives as believers. We have movements in Christianity where people are putting it away. I was in a church service that was three hours long and they said you are preaching the main message. You have 15 minutes. I smiled and said come and get me in my room when it’s time because I don’t think I can handle 2 hours 45 minutes of nonsense. What were they exalting? It was all about miracles and praying for the sick. And God does that and we believe in that but there was no focus on the Scripture. Aren’t you glad we have a Bible school? Phillipe Serradji. You can take one class. That would be amazing. One Bible college class, one class in the word. God can do that. God is so personal and gives us a personal word. Not just an eternal word, heaven and earth will pass away but my word is forever but it’s a personal word. God speaks to us very personally. When Peter failed and denied the Lord three times, he remembered a personal word spoken to him.
Luke 22:31, Simon, Simon, Satan has desired to have you, in the Greek Satan has demanded you back for himself, but I have prayed for you. When you are converted not if. When you are converted strengthen your brethren. That was a personal word of encouragement to Peter. Jesus said I’ll pray for you, you’ll fail, then get converted and lead.
We said at the lunch rap in 1 Sam 30:6 David reached the lowest point of his life. At Ziglag, the Amalekites took their wives and families and burned their city to the ground. It was their headquarters. The mighty men decided to stone David. He came to the end. Some think they came to the end and only at the three quarter point. It will be a while till they hit low point. But David was at the bottom. He got a personal rhema from God and David encouraged himself in the Lord his God. God said pursue. Four times, you are surely going to recover all. God would speak to David personally.
Moses said it in De 33:27 eternal God is my refuge and strength and underneath are his everlasting arms. He will thrust out my enemy. Moses heard God personally.
Ex 3 he murdered an Egyptian, dug a hole and buried him in the sand, escaped to the wilderness with Jethro and there 40 years. What is my life all about? One day he is walking and sees a burning bush. He draws near and a voice says draw near, take your shoes off. The place where you are standing is holy ground. I AM is speaking to you. Go back to Egypt and deliver the nation of Israel. Even in his backslidden state.
I don’t care what you’re going through, what your past has been like, God still right now wants to speak to me personally. It can be a personal I love you. Return. It can be you are doing an awesome work in God for me. It can be strengthening. It can be helping. It can be bringing joy to my life. I’m in this room and I’m alive today, God wants to speak to me through his word, through preaching, through studying the Bible. The enemy does so much to prevent it. He wants to hide the book, misinterpret the book, add to the book, take away from the book, destroy the book, neglect the book, attack the book, compromise the book, demote the importance of the book, mock the book, ridicule the book, steal the book, kill the book, and destroy the book. Why? Why? He knows if an eternal God is speaking to me, I am a threat to his darkness. God speaking eternally and personally. Personal words to me.
When I got saved 42 years ago, yesterday, Jan 6, I had a personal word from God. I got infatuated with the Bible and I was not a Christian. I read what happened to Apostle Paul in Acts 9. How can this murderer all of a sudden become a preacher just like that? God, can you do that in my life? And I got saved. Nobody witnessed to me. It was in a room with my Bible. My Bible and I. It was awesome. There began a journey of 42 years where God is personally speaking.
You have your story. You are here because somehow that happened. Unless you’re not saved, by the time we are done with this you probably will be. You had an initiation from the Holy Spirit. Anybody have that happen to them? Yes, you did. That took place in your life. God spoke. One time God spoke to Philippe Serradji about coming to Africa. He still owes me and God. No, I’m just joking. You’ll be coming soon! You just don’t know it. God speaking personal words. Abraham, get thee out of thy country. God made an initiation to Abraham. One man in the Ur of Chaldees in a very sophisticated civilization and God said there is one man there. I want him. God spoke to him. He is the father of our faith. God speaking to people. God himself the eternal God will speak to me. Sometimes we will become familiar with that. Are you listening? Leon and Colleen, are you listening? God is speaking to you. God speaking to us. Rhemas. Not just logos. God initiating towards me and speaking to me. I remember the times it happened in my life and I’m sure you do if you reflect on them. Don’t let Satan wipe out your spiritual memory. He can be good to bring in all kinds of patterns of thinking that have nothing to do with God and I forget. Why is the H.S. there?
So I can remember in Jn 14: 15, 16. H.S. delivers from spiritual Alzheimer’s by helping us to remember. I can remember. God spoke to me. God spoke to us. Remember the day God spoke to you in Brooklyn, New York (P. Eugene)? You remember that day you got saved in P. Moses church in Brooklyn, New York? Is Pastor Speedy here? He’s in the mother’s room with about 18 kids! I preached a message in South Africa and it was BUT GOD and him and his mother and father came to the ministry. It’s a personal word. How many years of heroin addiction were you delivered from, P. Steve? 18 years. God spoke to him when it happened. I’m not against all these programs. Did I say I’m not against them? Let me rephrase that. God can lead you to witness to psychiatrists. I’ve been to those people. For the sake of one thing or another. People say we need to have you examined. I like God speaking to me. God ministering to me. This is the key. P. Dan Lightsey, God spoke to you. How long in the ministry? Going on 40 years. God speaking. They are called rhemas, God speaking. Big Dave, God spoke to you one day. He doesn’t just speak to us about salvation but about calling us to a church.
Acts 13:1-3, Separate Saul and Barnabas unto me for the work I called them to do. God spoke to them and called them out from the church. I can rest assured God is going to speak to me. He loves to speak to me. God is always speaking but I’m not always listening. Most quoted verse in the whole N.T. is he that has an ear to hear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. Hearing you hear not and see not neither do you understand. That’s quoted 7 times in the Bible from Isaiah 6. There’s a problem with people listening. Listen to God. I love you with an everlasting love. I’m going to set you free through the Word and the Spirit. The Word and the Spirit will set me free. Am I listening? God can free you. God can give liberty. I am trapped in this situation, trapped in a relationship that is wrong, in a financial situation, in a health problem. God is saying would you listen. The trial of your faith is more precious than gold. I want to speak to you in your valley.
1 Sam 17 Goliath 40 days he mocked Israel. They are sitting there like this (shaking his legs.) He was nine feet six inches tall. Give me a man, you cowards. He called them servants of Saul. They lost their identity as God’s people. Here’s this kid with bread and cheese, David. He is told to bring up bread and cheese for his brothers.
He listens and he goes up where his brothers are and King Saul and says is there not a cause, 1 Sam 17:29. This is what it says, Is there not a DAVAR? Didn’t we get a word from God? Why is everyone trembling and so afraid of this giant? I’m going to take his head off. He walked with the head seven miles to Saul’s place, this bloody dripping head. David, the 16 year old, heard a word from God.
People get married without hearing a word from God. They get involved in situations and take jobs without hearing from God. I want to hear from God. My whole life I thought I was going to Italy as a missionary. Imagine how many pizzas I would have eaten. I would have had a bad stomach. I was geared to Milan, Italy. In one month it all fell through…I said to Pastor Stevens, what happened? He said God doesn’t want you in Italy. He said ever think about Africa? For what? Would you pray about it? I said no. Guess where I ended up? Africa. A personal word from God. God wants to speak to us personally. Come to church and what time it is now. Doing my obligation. No, I want to hear from God.
Mt 4:4 man does not live by bread alone, pizza alone, but by every single rhema that comes out of the mouth of God. It’s rhema not logos. I can live by rhemas. How do I want to live? I don’t get rhemas from Fox News or CNN or politicians or educational institutions. Or the Baltimore Ravens or New England Patriots. I get rhemas from the word of God. That’s how I want to live. I don’t know where it’s going to take me but I want to receive rhemas from God. Michele, you heard from God and came to Baltimore. Now you have an amazing husband and you make rice and beans. How do I want to live? Perchance by the ups and downs of life? I’m living by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. When fail, I have another word that says he has mercy rejoicing over judgment. Living by every word of God. If I never open the Bible, come to church, never hear the word preached, how will I live by every rhema out of the mouth of God? We can become subjective. “God told me.” Four men in Africa told me that God told them to marry a certain person on the team, a woman. I got them all in a room. One of them said one of us could be right. She says none of you. She doesn’t have a witness on any of you. It’s probably your OSN, subjectivity or demons speaking to you. You are all wrong. Subjective. “God said.” I hear a lot of that in Christianity. A guy said God told me to divorce his wife. I said you almost prove evolution. Acting like a monkey. You are a monkey believer. I want to live by every word. How do I want to fight? The Bible says the sword of the Spirit is the rhema of God. We fight by rhemas. We are in a battle against our own flesh, the devil and demons and the world. A lot of Christians don’t believe in the devil and demons. They used to believe that years ago. Really? One time a witch came at me and she was not on the ground. I said that’s interesting. The devil you can see is not as dangerous as the one you can’t see. The one in the school system bringing in all kinds of strange relationships. I thought that’s interesting. She’s not on the ground. I dropped her out of the air with a verse.
Eph. 6:17. Gone. The Bible works. How am I going to fight against the enemy? Rhema that comes from God. Some want to fight with their mind opposite of what the Scripture says. That’s why we learn the Bible and have Bible preaching. That’s why we have Dr. Stevens and P. Schaller and many men of God. I want to live by what? Fight by what? Rhemas. That means I study the word of God and see the importance of it. How do we live by faith? Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the rhemas of God. God gives me a rhema in the situation I’m in. I’m not saying he’ll change the situation but I get a personal word from God on the situation I’m in. Without faith it’s impossible to please God. God wants to speak to me personally to build my faith.
Luke 1:37, Mary said nothing is impossible with God. Nothing is rhema. No personal word from God is without God’s ability. God wouldn’t speak to you personally unless he was going to do it. We get so concerned about children and grandchildren. God will speak to me personally. My problem is ear wax. Too much wax in the ear. Thank God he never gives up. He’s always speaking. We get rhemas from God.
I get a vision in Jn 4. I become a great evangelist because of a rhema from God. Jesus preached rhemas in Nazareth his home town. They said what a word from God. They got a personal word. Some said let’s kill him. God wants to speak to us. God wants to speak to me. I approach my Bible. I approach church service. I’m focusing on what God is saying to me today through the Spirit.
2 Cor 12:4 I was caught up into heaven and heard unspeakable words which are not lawful for man to utter. These words came from God. Man cannot utter them. God gave me a message. My grace is sufficient for you, my power is perfected in weakness. That will take me through my whole life.
Php 1:7 my grace, Exodus 33:10-11 my grace will take you through every situation, through valleys. We’re going on the mountain top but the valley is coming. God speaks in the mountain and in the valley. Walk through valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil. I want 2018 to be a year I hear from God and God’s word, not through subjectivity and my own imagination.
2 Cor 10:4. I want to hear from God if I’m a husband in a marriage, how to raise children; hear from God about educating children. Hear from God about my personal ministry. What does God have for me personally in the ministry? The blessings we receive from God. He who has an ear, let him hear.
Rev 2 and 3. Let’s make 2018 a new beginning. I want it to be new. I don’t want to bank on the old.
I’m going from zero to one hundred degrees. We’ll be in Liberia. We’ll meet with 4000 people. Pray for us. We will have relationships and receptivity to God. People coming from West Africa. God would personally speak to them and all the preachers. Not just it is another convention. It would be absolutely new, personal and eternal.
I want to go out of here knowing God will speak to me and he is personal and eternal and my ears are wide open.
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