In the assembly of Christ, we are blessed. It is where God’s work is honorable and glorious. The fear of the Lord makes it so we’re not jealous of the heathen. Let us not slide into the common and foolish. (Psalm 111:1-10)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller, Pastor Steve Andrulonis
Sermon # 11275
7:30 PM on 6/7/2017
P. Steve Andrulonis
We’ve been working in the Dundalk area about a 1.5 years…P. Perkins and P. Jeff did a really good job watering and sowing. I’m hoping I’m the reaper. We’ve been going through the songs of ascent, Ps 120-134. Climbing songs, sung on the way to Jerusalem. Bluesy numbers in here. Sad songs. In my distress is the first worship set you get. But it ends well. He heard me and delivers my soul…what shall be done to thee, oh false tongue? Talking about being a liar and living among liars. As we go through these psalms, we learn how God hears our cries and asks us to lift our eyes beyond the hills and know where our help comes.
Peter was the rock and then Satan within a few minutes. Courageous swinging a sword and then a little girl says you were with Jesus. No, I’m not. I want to use that term that the Bible isn’t filled with characters but real people. Peter lied a lot and swung a sword.
Ever cut off someone’s ear? Said something the wrong time and in the wrong place and you wonder why they can’t listen to you. There is good news for that. Is there something we can do about it? No, we can’t. We might wound someone but Jesus will help those we wound.
Malchus got his ear back. Peter sliced it off in a fit of whatever, foolishness, and Jesus put the ear back on. Peter learned these things. Peter got a visitation from the Spirit about going to Cornelius and he listened.
I had one of those days on outreach that was amazing. I was by myself. It was just me. I knocked on a few doors and met a woman. We met her husband and her about 8 months ago. We visited her house about 6 or 7 times. I haven’t seen her since Christmas. She said so glad you brought the Lord to my house. We first met her husband and his wife is addicted to opioids. How many read Paste magazine? It’s a rock and roll magazine. There was an article if you are under 50 the leading cause of death is opioid overdose. 62,500 people under 50 died from these things. This woman had an addiction to prescription pain killer opioids. I haven’t seen her since Christmas. I saw her yesterday and she said I’m free. She said I’m thankful. She has these dogs and they kept interrupting our conversation. She said I’m so glad you told me about Jesus. Sometimes you say the wrong thing and cut off someone’s ear but then you get that moment like yesterday. She’s going to another church but she’s part of my body, flesh and bones. I don’t want to give her name out but you can pray for this couple. The guy is not saved. The guy who asked us to pray for his wife we hope will become a believer through her testimony. Dundalk has a lot of people who like to talk. If you like Purple Flamingo’s. My kind of people. Lord is really using us in spite of ourselves and uses moments like that to encourage us.
What a joy to see our friends and our sisters and brothers come together from so many places. To hear the work of God.
Ps 111:2, to seek out the work of God. Let’s turn there and memorize it. I think we can do it. The works of the Lord. A woman in Dundalk is prayed for and the addiction is over. Vadim’s daughter. His daughter healed. Two conventions ago. P. Arpit was here and told about a train robber in India and he had robbed 5 trains and never arrested. He got saved and he’s been arrested twice for evangelizing! Healing, evangelism, changed life. Young woman decides she wants to chase guys. This young lady thought I’m going to chase guys and then she had another thought. What was it? Why don’t I go for something bigger? Why don’t I seek something bigger? I can go after something bigger. God, I want something bigger. She took the cross into that thought instead of chasing guys, I’ll bring it to God. By nature, I could chase guys but by faith I could bring God into my life and I find the freedom and a new life.
vs. 2. Are they great? Are we going to hear them this week? Next week? Convention week? The works of the Lord are great. Do you have pleasure in hearing those stories? In hearing the testimony fresh from a third world country or Europe or any other place in the world. We hear stories from the brothers in Africa, in India. Turning back home. Coming back home. Having a home. The works of the Lord are great…
vs. 2. Ps 111:1, people are coming to this assembly and many assemblies around the world and are praising God with their whole heart. We could say they are going home. We have a spiritual home and God is our Father. The H.S. is our comforter just like our mother. The H.S. comforts us, teaches us and takes care of us and leads us in the assembly of the upright and the congregation. How many remember the convention of 2005? We had gone through a transition and had the missions march. In this room, the H.S. fell on us and anointed us in a powerful way. I remember it.
It was like in Acts 2 but we didn’t speak in tongues. If we did we would have rejoiced in it. It was the H.S. making a statement to us, winter is past and summer is here and we are healthy. We are following Jesus. He is our healer. The works of God are looked for and we are seeking them.
vs. 3. Like P. Taggart said in the offering, it’s so edifying we praise God. Anytime a young child in GGCA grows up in the faith. P. Duke you are proud of your son, Seth, I know. Seth graduated and he’s an awesome young man. The young guys, high school that went to the Philippines, what amazing privileges we have. You can go on a plane and come back and it’s not a big deal. God’s work is honorable. It is also glorious. When a young person decides to follow Christ instead of chasing guys. When young man says to the opioid down the street not going to happen. Spirit is guiding me in it and I have a home. A home where I’m being warned. Greatest cause of death for Americans under 50 years of age is overdose, not cancer or car accidents. Not heart disease. Well, in my home church with you folks in the Spirit with love in our hearts and a vision and mission we love the congregation and assembly of the upright. The congregation is honorable. People come here by faith and are looking for God. Work of God in Turkey, Albania, China, India. It is glorious.
vs. 3-4. When we had our difficulties and some of my brothers went to Bible College with, they started to trash the Bible college. I would never have done it. I went to a Bible college up in Maine with 30 people in it.
vs. 4. It is beautiful. It is to be remembered. When you made a decision to go to Bible College and he anointed the class, and we met on the side walk and said praise God he will do something. This is to be remembered. God, I’m seeking you and looking for you. Everyone in this congregation there are people who come from Hungary…I remember when we met and his whole family. This is precious to us. We don’t have anything else. Yeah, a car and house and dog and potato plant. Fine. But we don’t have anything except what God has given us. When Mary met Jesus she sat at his feet. When John was with Jesus he was on his bosom. In Song of Solomon, she is kissing his lips. I want to go from his feet, to his bosom to his mouth. I want a connection with Christ. I want to seek him and find him. If you become dishonorable to the work of God, you are dishonorable to him. What are you doing in the face of Christ who paid his blood for those people? He loves his church regardless. He honors it and so do we.
vs. 4. Very compassionate. That’s one of the things I love about coming. I say to anyone anywhere come home. Come home whoever you are. God has a home. He is gracious and full of compassion. Like in the prodigal son story. I had enough of the pig food, this lifestyle, I’m going back home. Some don’t know what a home is. A woman had ten coins and lost one. 99 sheep and one was lost. Both a coin and a sheep are not like a son. A human being can say I’m going to my father. The sheep and the coin don’t know. There are times you have to go and find. Coin isn’t going to get up and walk across the dining room table. You got to go find it. We got to learn to talk to people about Jesus that it would come out of our heart and mouth. It’s a part of our life. Come home. You need a home. He is gracious and full of compassion. God is so compassionate.
Mt 9 he turned to the disciples and said pray to the Lord of the harvest. These people are on the hillside and wandering around and don’t know better. Come home. Please come home. Give a friend a nudge. Let’s go to the convention this year. “I don’t want to show up. I’m embarrassed.” One brother was gone 4 years. I called him up and said come back. He said I’ can’t. I said the longest walk in your life is from the car to the door but do it. Then it will be over. God is gracious and full of compassion. He restores you and loves you and encourages you. There are so many people who have failed in this lesson called life. They have lost their perception. In Job it speaks of the ostrich. What does she do that is so dumb? She crushes her own eggs. The ostrich is deprived of understanding. Birds and animals have some clever things but some are dumb.
De 29:4 they do not perceive. Their hearts are not seen. Our sisters and brothers are in trouble out there. They don’t dare come back. They might be afraid of how they will be received. If someone comes and you haven’t seen them for a long while, be Spirit filled, gracious and mind your own business. Thank God you’re there. “Where have you been? I’m asking you a question? Where have you been?” Are you kidding? Come home. There is a home. There is words, Spirit, God will help you and you will drink the Spirit.
vs. 5. Meat is real food – spaghetti and pizza and macaroni and cheese and so on, – but also spiritual food to them that fear him. We are eating this food. We need it in a troubled world. I realize more and more I have lived a life that I could never go close to the life – we learned in preaching don’t use yourself as an illustration! You could never have lived a Spirit filled life with any wisdom without this fear of God.
vs. 5. He gave us the Spirit. He spoke at night. We went for a walk in faith and started to pray. We had pastor stir our hearts up. Instead of chasing guys or girls, God I have a better idea. You could take care of all my stuff. The works of God are sought out by all them that have pleasure therein. We want to hear about it and see it in each other. Paul said he was comforted by the coming of Titus. Epaphroditus has met my needs. Timothy, I have no one like-minded. There is a Mary in this congregation that said let it be unto me according to your word. A Thomas who says my Lord and my God. We are no different from the first century. We are richly blessed and engaged and encouraged in the Spirit in what God has called us to be part of. Even if there’s one soul, it would be enough but it’s more. Count the disciples that God makes and the people that have been touched.
He has showed his people the power of his works vs. 6. I’m not jealous at all of anything in the world or the heathen have. I have no jealousy for anything this world has. He has showed his people the power of his works.
vs. 7. We delight in it. Meditate on it. Even many years ago when we saw our first team go to El Salvador I remember the parking lot in the little town in Maine. I remember getting in the car with pastor. I remember going to Boston and going soul winning and a healing meeting. Angels being in the service. Justin told me he heard the angels sing in a church service. Pastor said we heard angels singing while the preaching was going on. God is with us and cares about our work. He cares about the weak people. Every one of them that is out there need to come home. Some could come home here. This is a home. This is a good place. This is a place of blessing. We have sought it out. God has visited us. Every time God does something the devil shows up. Jesus is born in Bethlehem. Devil shows up. Devil takes him out to the wilderness for 40 days. In Pentecost, the temple police show up. When doing something that means something from God, there is resistance, doubt, something sown in your heart. God will say follow me and walk by faith and I’ll show you my good work and blessing. Why not celebrate this year that God is taking care of us. God is giving us what we need. I may not be traveling but sitting in this assembly in the capacity God has given me.
vs. 8-9. One thing about God’s work is it is holy. It’s ruined by becoming common. What kind of Spirit is the Spirit of God? Holy. God’s people. Holy. Book is this? Holy Bible. What kind of lives do we live? Holy. What ruins the work of God is we become who we are by our nature. Maybe we are kind and social and every work of God we slide from a work that is holy and slide into the common and social. Is your church a social club? Ask your neighbor. Is our café just a social club? I don’t know. It could be. For someone that’s true.
We were in Lenox, and leaving town in 1987 in about now, June. – 30 years ago. Our guinea pig was in the back seat and didn’t make it. First casualty of the journey! Of the migration! 8 or 900 families. People moved down here. He has made his wonderful works to be remembered. That was amazing we did that. We did it without any questions. We just packed up. We left schools and works and homes. We moved down here. We are packing up in Lenox and a man calls me up and says I want to meet you and give you a gift. I went to his house. We talked and he had a roll top desk to give me as a gift. Maybe he wanted to get rid of it. I had a truck. I’m talking to him. He was going to church five years. Are you born again? No. Do you believe in Jesus? No, I don’t.
Why do you go? The people are so nice and the atmosphere is amazing. Could this church be a social club for someone? Absolutely. Is it for most of you? Probably!! You don’t know what is going on in the hearts of people. This is a holy congregation and a Holy Spirit. Do you know how it changes? It can go from holy to common, profane, or normal or average or plain old, plain old. Or I go to see my friends. Very good but my heart is not in it. God will answer your prayer and stir your heart. You begin to understand what this is. This is not just a common thing where we gather by nature or tradition or because we are GG. I was in church once and they said in GG we have rap sessions. Because it’s in the manual? What is a rap session? I can see it already. Take anything of God and have the flesh do it and it’s not holy anymore. It doesn’t touch the hearts of people. It isn’t the work of God but the work of men. When churches slide from the work of God to the work of men, we have a problem. We go after God and instead of the church maintained we go after God. If go after God, you get everything. Church on fire, disciples moving, and people touched, healing of opioid addicts.
vs. 10. We are going from the feet of Jesus to the bosom to the mouth. Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth. Get used to it. This is God loving us and us loving God. How awesome is that. We expect God’s conviction done God’s way.
Thank you for opening up homes, taking people in cars, giving generously. God will lead us and guide us. Sheep, let’s get them. Coin, find it. Son, please come home. We love you. We’re waiting.
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