We look up rather than looking in ourselves. Every word of God has been given to us. The facts of our cases are nothing compared to the mind of God and His grace. (James 4:2; Deuteronomy 8:1-6)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller, Pastor Steve Devries, Mathew Gehret
Sermon # 11479
6:30 PM on 5/27/2018
Hi everyone. I’m going to be in James 4:1-2. I’m going to give you plenty of time to get there. I’m going to tell a brief story before that. First half of my year this year starting in Sept. I went to Malawi to join the Arman’s. It was part of my practicum. We just had graduation yesterday. When I was there I was by myself. I had the team and with them all the time but as a single missionary you find you have a lot of down time, not wasted time. I had two options. Look within or look without myself. Look at my circumstances and analyze it and contemplate it and wonder why I went or I could be looking without. Think of this phrase, a simple phrase, remember to look up and you have gotten what God has imparted to me. Look up. I taught biblical psychology over there. It’s an amazing class. P. Schaller teaches it here and P. Stevens used to teach it.
You can start with Ge 3 the way the devil interacts with Eve and talk about human psychology starting from that standpoint. This is the first time Eve thinks about herself, is aware of who she is.
James 4:1-2 up until the serpent spoke to Eve, she was only listening to the things God said. She looked up, looked to Adam. When the devil started to speak to her, she started to look within herself.
James 3:16 speaks about this again. You would say if you read that story, Eve was very confused. She started to wonder about the fruit and what God had spoken to Adam and her. It brings us to where we are today.
vs. 17 talks about something else.
vs. 18. Eve had two options in that moment. She could have listened to what the devil was saying and looked within. She desired the fruit. It was something she wanted or she could have continued to look up. We can’t erase what Eve did or what we did when we decided to look within. We have that option every day to look up to the wisdom from above. It’s pure and comes down on us. It’s gentle and easy to be entreated. Full of mercy. Where we are all at, I just graduated and the GGCA kids graduated last week and amazing. Now you have a decision to make, places to go. Two options: you can look within and decide what you are going to do or look to God and look to what he says to make those decisions. King David in the psalms did both of these things. He looked within or to God. Each psalm you can see him do different things.
Ps. 38:3-4, he’s looking within the entire time.
Then Psalm 8:3-4 totally different perspective on his life at that moment.
Ps 38 after his sin with Bathsheba but has the option to look up or keep looking within. The rest of those verses are depressing and dark. Something we all go through.
He could think the way in Ps 8 and say if I look at your heavens, what am I that you are mindful of me? I would encourage you whatever situation you are going through, you have two distinct options. I’m sure there are more options but to simplify you can look within at your deceitful and wicked heart or look up to God. The Israelites looked to God when Moses put the brazen serpent on a pole. Confession is looking up, looking to the Father who gives every good gift to you including forgiveness. God wants you to look to him.
James 1:17 he is the Father who gives all good gifts and they come from above. He’s going to show you how to go. Why do we look within?
Just look up.
P. Steve Devries
Good evening. I’m P. Steve Devries. Where is Oliver? I’m from Kentucky. I’m from Korea, Illinois, Thailand, China, from heaven.
If you have your Bibles, De 8: I love that message. You demonstrated your message. He’s going along and what do I say next? What is the temptation? To look within myself but he didn’t do it. He said open your Bible. That was awesome. When in doubt, open your Bible.
De 8:1-6, when I was in Bible college, I was so amazed with P. Stevens the way he correlated verses. And to learn how to search the Scriptures and search and turn the pages and let the Holy Spirit connect and intertwine the heart of God and make God’s word so personal to our lives. I’m so thankful I had this example and training in Bible college.
1 Cor 10:11, everything we read happened to them as examples for us and written for our admonition and our encouragement, our life. Man does not live by rice and kimchi alone! By bread alone. Man lives, real life, real life on this earth is by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
Jesus quoted this passage when he was confronted and tempted by the devil in Mt 4:4 and later Luke 4:4.
vs. 3. If you have the power of God turn these stones into bead. You’re hungry. Pray for your needs. Ask and command.
vs. 4. In this verse are three aspects of God’s word.
1) It is written. The GRAPHE. This is our Bible. This is the written word that Jesus said. Heaven and earth will pass away before one little letter will pass away from the written word.
2) He’s declaring an eternal reality, the LOGOS. When he says man shall not live by bread alone this is the LOGOS, the unchanging rock of truth. Either I will bend my knee to it and believe it by faith or the truth will crush me. I can’t overcome it. This is an eternal truth. Man does not live by bread alone. Our real life is not the provision here in this life. What is our provision? It’s the Word of God. When he translates it into Greek, by every word, this is RHEMA. This is God speaking and illuminating and making personal for your situation right now. God’s eternal word spoken to by the Spirit. The H.S. speaks, the word of God, the Bible speaks. It’s personal and intimate. Man lives by every word proceeding from the mouth of God. This is our life.
Rom 1:17 Revelation of God revealed from faith to faith. The just shall live by faith.
What is faith, Rom 10:17. Hearing by the RHEMA of Christ. There is no other way. This is how we are living day by day.
All of these things happened as examples for us that we might be encouraged to live by faith and demonstrate the R of God. Who is speaking this? This is Jesus Christ the eternal LOGOS who became flesh and dwelt among us and he his speaking it, living this verse out. He did it so you and I can do it. We can live by this verse. It’s great to have bread to eat but God tested the Israelites. He caused them to be hungry to test their hearts and humble them.
Are you going to trust my word and my promise? We say yes, Lord. I’m going to be one of these. In these last days upon whom the ends of the earth had come these are written for us.
Let’s review a couple things we just heard. Not adding to what P. Steve said. GRAPHE, written letters, the marks on the papyrus, the scrolls. It is written on the scrolls by the prophets and the scribes. LOGOS – the thought, feeling, mind of God. This is what we read in the Bible. Rhema. The word that comes out of the mouth of God. I read my Bible and that is GRAPHE. I read the biographies and histories and then I get the LOGOS, the thought of God in the Bible and then in my particular situation God gives me a living word. I have a trial. We preached on guilt and the freedom we have in Christ. Then he said Christ was speaking this verse in
Mt. 4:4 and you could touch him, his flesh. You are touching the word of God. The word became flesh and dwelt amongst us. He quoted from the Bible. It actually brought healing when he quoted from the Bible. Man by the pool – rise, take up your bed and walk. He stood up and walked and had never done it for 38 years. This is how we now live. We are not to live only by our stomach, our hormones, our physical bodies, our circumstances, our failure or disappointment. Some won’t leave the house because they are afraid of going outside. How are they living? By their stomach. By human nature. By fear. They are being controlled by disappointments, guilt and failure and their own temperament or culture and what mother and father said. They might have said never go to church. Those people are thieves. They will steal your money. Never put money in the collection basket. Yes, dad, that’s how I will live. How are they living? Not by every word that comes out of God’s mouth because they never heard it. There are people all over the place living not by what comes out of God’s mouth but they are living by their stomach, their nature, their fears, their pride, their religion or self R. It is just filling the world with something other than Christ taught us. He said lead you into the wilderness to teach you to live by the words that come out of my mouth. We should be thinking about the Bible, meditate on it. You came out to be hearing about the word of God.
Mat Gehret is one of the largest men I’ve met. He used to throw a baseball 89 miles an hour. That’s really fast. He was going into the pros but couldn’t get it 94 miles an hour. If he did, he would be in the national baseball league as a highly paid pitcher. What happened? He went to Bible school! And he graduated yesterday and gave that amazing message. And he’s marrying that fine young lady. Stand up Jamille. These are great graduates. We had an amazing weekend. Have a moment of fellowship with your neighbor on the subject of living by every word that comes out of God’s mouth. We had a beautiful message this morning. So thankful for that.
1 Jn 1, it’s a big subject. Big concern of mine. This is why.
We had a beautiful service with Donald Valerio and P. Drew Wileczek and then at the 11, this is what we spoke on guilt. After the sermon I was at the door and this man stopped and said thank you so much. I am released from my guilt and started to weep. He said my son was shot and killed and I have lived in the guilt of being a bad father. And he wept on my shoulder. We had a few moments there. He’s new in our church. It was a touching moment for me as I understand a 60 year old man, I don’t know how old he is, but you look back and you can have regrets. I wasn’t what I should have been maybe. I failed somebody. My life didn’t turn out what I wished it could have been. This is all around us. It’s painful. Every day we hear some news from somewhere.
Pray for the Veader family. Jackie went to be with the Lord. That’s a painful thing.
Guilt. Anybody can have it. Even for no reason. I haven’t done anything wrong. Sometimes I wake up. Lisa, did I kill anyone last night? What happened? What are you talking about? Why do I feel guilty? The answer is my sin nature is constantly guilty. It never changes. My sin nature that is in me is saying these things the good and evil tree. The tree of good and evil is in the presence of evil, of what I would do, I don’t do. What I shouldn’t do, I end up doing it at times. I need to make a correction. This morning I said phony as a $2 bill and after the service, someone showed me their $2. Okay $7 bill!
Rom 7 what could I do? If I work with my sin nature, I will always come up short. I’m never performing enough. I’m always a debtor. Realize this in the nature of life that we as people have a problem with guilt. It doesn’t go away until you understand first being saved and filled with the Spirit. Then you don’t have guilt. You have a new nature and the Spirit of God doesn’t condemn you. If you learn as a habit to relate to doctrine and we drew that diagram, the one this morning. The solid line is objective truth and the dotted line is subjective experience I am having. I feel guilty. In my heart I am guilty. If my heart condemns me, God is greater than my heart. Truth of dying with Christ and being raised with Christ. It must be that the H.S. is in the world to show me truth. The facts may be that I did kill someone. God forbid, but facts are facts. Truth is God’s mind. When God says you are forgiven and I remember your sin no more, that means maybe in a prison paying for my sin but not before God. It was paid for at the cross. The blood has set me free without a guilty conscience. This is the reality of doctrinal thinking. Our brother at the door said thank you. I got it. I have lived in guilt because of failing in my family and realize something is much greater than my situation and I realize who Christ is and what he did for me. If this is real, true it’s the greatest treasure we can have. There must be some laboring in my faith to embrace it and digest it. Look around. Ray Korowski, the biker, he is such a living testimony in my heart because of his life and the Spirit showing him truth. We don’t even know what people go through in the facts of the case. We don’t care as much about the facts of the case as much as the grace of God and the mind of God and what that means to me. He does not condemn me. I’m growing up and living beyond myself. We preach it all the time but it takes time and processing and thinking with God to say by golly, I’m going to take that all the way to the bank. I’m going to believe that and walk in it. I got it. I’m not going to talk about it, relate to it. My identity is not that. My identity is in him and this is how I’m going to live. None of us know what our future holds.
If we can do what P. Steve said we would be amazed what God has said and what he is doing and we will put on the Lord Jesus Christ and the personal sense of freedom. Yes, my son was shot by the police on the street he said. Horrible nightmare for any person but we have to think about this. That can’t be I would live in my pain and suffering and fears. It cannot be. There must be something greater for us. The pain, the hospital, the drugs, the alcoholism, the pain of life. There must be something much greater. J.C. raised from the dead is a guarantee to me I will live a unique and different life.
Gal 2:20-21 the faith I’m using isn’t even mine. It’s the faith of the Son of God. It’s an entirely new life. A transformed mind and way of life that takes effort and time and attitude and never stopping. Some of us are old timers in the ministry. I can be an old timer but as fresh in heaven on this earth. I’m not labeling anyone as an old timer but we have the freshness of God in our life. To get some reservoir and reference and way of thinking for what God has for us for our future and how we can help the next generation find J.C. I’m happy we are not content with passing on religious services to the next generation but finding him and living in him and believing in him and doing things beyond our capacity and living in a quality of life and love. Conventions not done out of duty but life and joy.
Have some expectation in your heart for this Convention. With the freshness of your life may you meet your sister and brother in the parking lot and share Christ with them. When we meet our brothers and sisters coming in, may we share Christ with them.
Some live in their flesh and relate in their flesh and are very discouraging the way they talk. Jesus met two on the road to Emmaus. What are you talking about that makes you so sad? Haven’t you heard? Tell me about it. They talk and he starts talking and their hearts start burning and starts to be fellowship. This is the fellowship we are all looking for and have found. That which is motivating us in the next step.
Let’s have another step. Another chapter, phase, another step in life. Let’s see what the Lord will do. Let’s see more of his goodness happen in our everyday life. Let’s see our young people enjoy being with us. Isn’t that great. They want to be with us sitting at a table. They want to be in our families. Be with us in our church, in the mission. We have a next step. Amen.
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