There are two realities — sin and the curses upon this world, and the steadfast grace of God. Jesus came and died to make us crooked ones straight in Him. Grief of mind doesn’t have to plague us. He made a covenant with Himself and He cannot reverse His promise. (Ecclesiastes 1:15; Genesis 26:34-5; Genesis 15:7-15; Numbers 23:19)
Covenant Grace for Grief of Mind
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
11:00 AM on 9/22/2019
: P. Schaller –
Would you stand with me and turn in the Scripture. Thank you. Amen. Praise God. Do we have a good attitude
this morning? That was a great word from P. Renaldo. I have questions, and I might not get
answers, but I get a word. How many can identify with that statement?
I have something but the Lord gave me what I really needed. Maybe I didn’t get the answer, but I got him. The Lord
said, do you have a question? No, I got you. Thank you, Lord. How about the verse, peace
passes all understanding and love passes knowledge. How about when you were a kid and fell
down and scraped your leg and were crying and mom picked you up in her arms – I had two
problems, bleeding and I was alone, but when she picked me up, I wasn’t alone anymore and
forgot I was bleeding.
That’s not the message. Praise the Lord! May the Lord speak to us from
the message. Amen. (prayer) Thanks to Doug Pearson and Beth. Thanks to all the folks that
made the weekend so great. We had a great group of women with us. I shared in the women’s
meeting yesterday a few good points about women in missions. I’ll read this one paragraph. D.
L. Moody, A.B. Simpson and A. J. Gordon believed in encouraging women’s gifts for public
ministry. Hudson Taylor…saw the need to recruit and send women to evangelize. In 1888,
Taylor wrote we are manning our stations with ladies.
Kathryn Booth and William booth in England with Salvation Army, he used convicts released from prison and women to run the Salvation Army. This article about Cho said regarding his experience. He concludes that in his
experience with women, they are the best choice for difficult pioneer work. Women never give
up. Men are good at building up the work, but women are best for persevering when men get
discouraged. I also had this great experience with the Finnish women through the years. I used
to live there, and we had a huge work that was growing and increasing. We saw the dedication
but not the ego.
I wanted to recognize through history, they have been so useful. Two thirds of
the mission force on the fields today are made up of women. We want to salute the godly
women in the ministry that follow God with words of faith.
Ec. 1, for the introductory thought. Would you keep your finger there? I want you to notice the verse from Ge 26. I just shifted. Vs.34. Another sub point here. Vs. 35. Grief of mind unto Isaac and Rebekah. See that phrase “grief
of mind.” I got up yesterday morning and got prepared for the seminar and this phrase was in
my mind. When you learn the Bible, the Holy Spirit can bring verses to you. I’m sure it’s
happening in your life. It would be like my son married someone outside the family or tribe.
Remember Isaac when Abraham sent a servant to get a wife for Isaac, the servant said can I
take any woman? Abraham said no, only someone from my family. You have to travel 500
miles. He had to go back to where Abraham was from to find a wife for Isaac.
Ge 24. This story was different. Go to the previous one. Vs. 34. What was the problem with this? Why was it a
grief to the parents? Why was it a grief? Esau took a woman and another woman, two women,
and they are both Hittites. That’s a different group of people. There was a disappointment in
the family. To say everybody here has something that you could concentrate on that would be a
grief of mind to you. I think so. If you are over 70 years of age! If you are old enough.
There were times I had no grief of mind. I was living in paradise. Life was great. Then life happened.
There are things that can be financial, family, job related, health, etc. These things are
ordained. The death of a loved one. A tragedy of some kind. It becomes a grief of mind. Vs. 35.
It happens. My message today I would like to help us get over the grief of mind that happens
with people. I have a thought I want to share. My prayer is the Holy Spirit would help us
understand grief of mind happens in life but how you process it is the important thing, not the
fact you have it. How do I relate to it? How do I understand God’s mind? To have a hunger for
God. God’s mind is not ours. My thoughts are not your thoughts and my ways not your ways.
We have to get very humble before God and listen to what he has to say and trust in him in our
Ec. 1, would you like to do a little talking a little bit? You don’t have a mood to talk
to your neighbor. Do you want to talk this morning? In the message, I’ll give a point and then
ask you to talk to your neighbor. The Spirit may speak more through your neighbor than
through me! Whatever works.
Ec. 1:15, that which is crooked cannot be made straight. Are there things that cannot be fixed? Are there broken things that cannot be fixed? If there is something crooked that cannot be made straight. Is there something wrong that cannot be corrected? Are there things that happen in life that we realize this is how it is? It happens or
two. That which is wanting. Lacking or remember that phrase you’re always a minute late and
dollar short. Always have a dollar short or I’m off.
Has that ever happened to you that you were missing something? Oh, I just missed the bus. I can’t believe that. I was just late. I didn’t have my money with me. I can’t believe I didn’t talk to that person. If I had talked to that person, this whole thing – we are in life where there are things that are missing and things we lose. There
are things that we are disappointed with or we regret. I wish or if only.
I love that Mary and Martha story. Their brother is sick, and they send for Jesus. Lazarus is sick and Jesus is waiting
to go to the family. He waits 4 days and now he comes. One sister runs out. He is dead. If you
had been here, he would not have died. I have to put this big word up here. IF. If only. Don’t say
that. It’s a dead end. If only you had been here. If only I had lived there instead of there. If only I
had that job instead of that job. If only I had left the house ten minutes later. Those are dead
end statements. They don’t get me anywhere.
There is something deeper for us in life. That’s what I want to share with you. And that’s God. Turn to two places and this won’t be so long.
Ge15, God has spoken to Abraham and said I’m going to bless you. I will bless you. Vs. 7-10 he
took the animals and split them in half. He took half on this side and half there and an aisle
between the two sides. The birds he didn’t divide. He had the animals split in half and they are
divided, and God is going to show Abraham I’ll do what I promised, and I’ll show it to you this
way. Vs. 12-13. Hold it.
The sun is going down. Abram is getting tired. Darkness comes and
Abram is going to fall asleep. This is a visual picture of something very important to us in our
We have grief of mind. We lose things. We are late when we should be on time.
We are people who break our promises. You can’t totally depend on us. We may be there, or
we may not be there. God is not like that. God is going to make a promise to Abram whether he
is asleep or awake or horrified or at peace.
I’m going to do this with or without you. I am God. You are always a dollar short. I am not. You got your life of trouble. I don’t have. I identify with your trouble, but I got to make you a promise. You need something more than whatever you can produce on your own. You need something fresh or new that you can never lose. It can
never be stolen. It can never collapse or be destroyed. You need something from me. I’m
making you a promise. How do I know your promise is going to be? The Lord showed him. Vs.13. Which land is that? Egypt.
You’ll be a stranger in a land that is not theirs. Abraham is in
Israel but doesn’t own it but has it by promise. God is giving a prophecy. Your family will be in
Egypt and serve as slaves and they shall afflict them 400 years. But listen. I’m not a man like you
people. I am God and you need to know me. I am God and I’m going to speak to you and teach
you and show you who I am.
This is what we are hungry for as people. I know I was a dollar short. I know I parked in the wrong place and got a ticket. I know I bought a car and got ripped off here and there. My life is filled with these things. You can fill a warehouse of stuff I have lost or stolen from me. No, airplane hangar! If you could ever find all the stuff stolen from me and lost and scattered around planet earth.
Vs. 14. They will be getting gold and silver from the Egyptians as they are leaving. The Egyptians are giving them their jewelry. These slaves are coming out of Egypt and used the gold and silver to build their tabernacle as you know. It’s because God is with them. Vs. 15-17 look at this.
There is the aisle and a burning lamp going between the pieces. It doesn’t say back and forth but maybe it was. Going between the pieces. Picture of making a covenant. When people get married, the bride and groom come and both sides of the family come, and they come down and make a vow. We make an agreement and
we did this thing with the animals and two men walking between and make an agreement, a
This is a covenant God is making with Abraham. Abraham is distracted and out of the
picture in a way. Vs. 18-21. These are real people, real tribes, real nations. People with cities
and villages and towns and vineyards and God is giving it to Abraham and his people. He falls
There is darkness and horror, but it doesn’t change the fact there is a covenant. We
have been given a new covenant. In a similar way, we fall asleep and there is darkness or
horror. I was thinking of the cross, kind of darkness and horror. This is like us under a curse.
When Jesus died on the cross, the darkness and horror and the death which is lacking, grief of
mind, broken heart but God is saying I am faithful.
I make a covenant with you. I have not seen perverseness in Israel or in Jacob, Nu. 23:19. Where is the bill of your divorcement? Is. 50:1 this is amazing. What does that mean? Israel has a covenant with God. She is called the wife of Yahweh in the book of Hosea. God is married to Israel. Israel plays the harlot. She is, instead of
God, she has her love relationships.
It says in Hosea she has sought many lovers. Wow. And can’t find a faithful lover. The lovers leave her high and dry. The lovers she is looking for have disappointed her in her heart. Even though Israel is doing this, God says where are the divorce papers?
Is 50:1, he hasn’t put her away. He’s saying to the nation, where is the papers that
show I have put you away? I haven’t put you away. Where is the evidence? I have not forsaken
you. You have come up short, but I will not fail you or forsake you. I don’t see your iniquity or
perverseness. Surely God you see Israel’s sin.
There is two realities here. One is her sin and the other reality is his grace, his nature, his faithfulness. Like he said to Abraham, I want you there, but I know you will fall asleep. You can’t be in this game. It’s between me and my son, Jesus
Christ. The burning lamp that went between, that made that covenant, is God. We know God is
three. The burning fire is the love they have with each other. The loyalty they have with each
other is the basis of our relationship with God. Jn. 17. Thank you, Father, you have given me the
word and I gave it to them. You in me and I am in you and they are in me. Even the people that
lost the garden of Eden, lost their innocence, mind, money, possessions, relationships. Even the
people disappointed with themselves. Even the people who have sinned and have bad habits
continually. I am your answer. I am God. I’m not a man like you think I am. I will never leave or
forsake you. I’ll never fail you. That would be a little hard to explain but not really. In the
ancient world, if you ran into debt it might be a creditor could get a family member as a slave.
Your debt might result in some family member going into slavery and you have to work or are
working to pay off the debt and then you are free again.
You could only be a slave 7 years and then released on the seventh year. God is saying who did I sell you to? Vs. 2. You have to trust me on this. Study it and think about it. There are two realities. I suffer in my sin and my self-life.
I suffer in this world, but God will not divorce me or forsake me. He will not hold my iniquity
against me. If he did, who could stand. Ps. 140:4 how I need to understand the nature of God. It
is that love that changes my life. It’s that love that gives me peace, that heals me in my grief.
There is something better to focus on. That’s not my grief, but his grace, nature, promises, his
covenant. He is saying to us, I know you have grief of mind but lift up your eyes. Enter my gates
with praise and courts with thanksgiving. I’ll turn something bad into something good. I’ll fill
your heart with comfort. I’ll anoint you with fresh oil. I’ll show you the way. I’ll teach and guide
you into something deeper. I’ll set you on a rock higher than yourselves
Nu 23, P. Stevens, our pastor from years ago, – it’s funny to say that – helped us understand it. It was kind of out of the blue. We heard it many times, but I would always be fascinated with how much he loved this
text of Scripture. I would love it. We would love it also. I think we do, those that know it. We
have it in our memory and way of thinking in our hearts. You can take two people the same
things happen to them in life. One becomes bitter and the other sweet. Two people in a nursing
home and one bitter and unhappy and the other filled with praise, sweetness, and gentleness
and the Holy Spirit.
What’s the difference? It’s the Holy Spirit. It’s how I process my life and how
I think. Do you believe it that the living Christ has anointed you with his Holy Spirit and teaching
You do have a right to rejoice in him even though I’m a dollar short. Even though my life is
messed up, he’s not. He’s a God of order. He puts my life in order by his grace. He has
something for everyone of us. He is a good God.
Nu. 23:19 Balaam is supposed to curse these Jewish people. He’s up on a rock looking over the nation as they are camping out. The camp is huge. If you lived in Harford county and know where Belair, Maryland is about 25 miles up that way. From here to Belair, Maryland is the diameter of the camp, a few million people and they
There is a king afraid of them. He heard they came out of Egypt miraculously. What
are they doing? Who are they? They are dangerous. They are going to steal from us. We have
an army. I don’t know what to do with them. Balaam, I will hire you to curse them. He goes to a
place of a high rock and looks over the nations and wants to curse them, but he can’t. He wants
to but he can’t because of what we are taking about today.
There is something here amazing and very important for us. It’s the underlying reality of our lives. We are the people of God. Our God is our Father. I don’t know if you had a good father or not. If you didn’t have a good father
as a kid, I’m sorry about it. Not all dads are good dads. If you happen to have one or watched
Leave It to Beaver or Father Knows Best what if there was a very good father and if God is like
that. You can trust him. He’s over me. He’s over and we can trust. Him.
Balaam said in vs. 19. God is not a man that he should lie. That means all the promises in this book are guaranteed and yeah and amen. Everything I will face in life; I have a heavenly Father who has a word in
season for my life. When Abraham fell asleep, the lamp is moving back and forth and the father
could say to the son, where is Abraham. He’s sleeping over there. Let him sleep on. We have a
There is horror and blackness. Doesn’t matter. We have a covenant. Death and
disease and sickness. I know but we have a covenant. I’m not a man I could lie. You can’t
change me on this. It’s good. It’s guaranteed. Vs 20.
There are two people and one curses the other one. Here is heaven. Do you know for that curse to work, heaven has to agree. Heaven has to agree. How do we know that? Jesus said to the disciples, what you bind will be bound in heaven. It will happen there. That’s the main office. That’s the head office. That’s where the
action is taking place, where the telephones are and the authority and the boss. God. If you
loosen, it’s loosened in heaven. If you are not a man or woman of God in the covenant with
God, you can curse but if it doesn’t come from heaven – there is a Proverb, the curse causeless
cannot come. There has to be something behind it. The first curse that came was in the garden
of Eden. Why did it come? Man disobeyed God.
The curse came because from heaven it was decided. You will die the day you eat of it. Here we are a dollar short and five minutes late. As we are limping along, we have a sure word from God. I sent my Son so that which is crooked can be made straight. What is crooked? Death. I don’t want to die. I wasn’t made to die. I can
feel it. You feel it coming. This is how sick people; this is what happens. It is crooked and it
cannot be straight. Jesus dies and comes out of the tomb. He goes, it’s made straight. It’s made
I overcame death. We have – my stuff is stolen. What happened? It’s part of the curse.
It’s the nature of life. It’s the sense of the vanity of losing. That’s how I feel. That’s reality. This is
what people say. We say God, God, what do you say? Who are you? I came so you may have
abundant life. I give.
Rom 4, that which is not is said to be. He calls the things that aren’t as
though they were. He calls the things that aren’t as though they were. I have sinned. I’m
unrighteous. Jesus comes out of the tomb and says I have given you my righteousness. You are
in my family. I bless you with a blessing that can’t be taken away.
Isaac blessed his sons Jacob and Esau. Jacob wanted the blessing but wasn’t hairy. Jacob goes to his father and says I brought you the meat. You got it so quickly. Yes. Come closer. I need to smell you. He was blind.
I bless you. Jacob goes out and the real Esau comes in. Father, I have the meat. Who are you?
I’m Esau. I already blessed Esau. No that was my brother Jacob that deceived you. I blessed him
and I cannot reverse it.
Wow! I feel this is like you and me when we go to prayer. It goes like this. This is me. This is us. This is Jesus. Jesus is before the Father. He’s in fellowship with the Father. He’s going to heaven. We’re here on the earth. I say I need a blessing. How do I get it? I think Jesus is the way to get it. I go like this. Father, the Father says who is it? I come in Jesus’ name. Bless me. Father blessed me and says I cannot reverse it! You know what, you know
what happens, I got it. I got it! Yeah, but you deceived me. I know but I got it and he can’t
change it. I don’t deserve it. I got it in another’s name. I got it in the name of Jesus Christ. Jesus
Christ gave me eternal life. I came in the name by faith in the living God.
That’s what you have, and I have. We have two things going on. I’m losing stuff, my health, my life. Every day. And
then I’m gaining and getting and believing and enjoying what I already got in his Son, Jesus.
I got saved when I was 19 years old. I was in college in New York. I was on a college campus partying and playing around and doing my thing. Someone came and told me about
Jesus. I said I want Jesus. He said read this prayer. I read the prayer. Jesus come into my heart. I
gave the paper back. He said you are a new creation. Okay. I don’t know what that means. I
started to think about it. I woke up the next morning and didn’t have guilt. I didn’t know I had
guilt until I woke up without it.
It lasted two days and then went away. I got into the subject
now. I was in the shower, and I had these skin warts on my two arms and fingers. There were
19 of them. Small protrusions there. I said God if you are real, take them away. Next day I
counted 18. In two weeks they were all gone. I’m interested. I started reading the Bible. I found
a little Pentecostal church. I went there and we learned how to pray and believe and have faith.
I was into it.
A kid at college also became a believer. He said I’m going to Colorado this summer.
Go with me. I heard there is a good church. I’ll pray and fast. My mom said why don’t you go to
Maine? Mom, don’t you love me anymore?
! I went to Maine and I found this church in 1972. You can learn and walk with God in a very real way. We’re talking about something very real. It’s a living God that cares about you. “You don’t know my life.” I know about it. We just
preached about it. I know about God and that’s what we are talking about. No good thing he
will withhold from him that walks uprightly.
lease enjoy these sermon notes from the messages preached at Greater Grace Church in Baltimore. These notes are provided to aid in your study and understanding of the Word. Note that these notes do not represent complete, word-for-word transcriptions. Also, they may contain omissions as well as some errors in spelling and structure, etc., as we attempt to provide them as soon as possible. Our hope is that these notes serve as a way to help you search and connect with messages on related subjects and passages. Thank you for your interest in the ministry of Greater Grace.