Go beyond comfort and seek the Lord. Hunger and motivation are problems in our world. Be loved by Him and you will love. (Song of Solomon 3:1-3)

Speaker(s):Avery Powers, Thomas Schaller
Sermon 12191
6:30 PM on 10/31/2021

Avery Powers –

Good evening. How’s everyone doing tonight? That was a great message this morning, wasn’t it? Our sins are
buried in the deepest sea, in the deepest part of the ocean. I think of the Mariana Trench. It’s
seven miles maybe but like what does that mean? I know that if you put – you can put Mt.
Everest in that. Mariana Trench. And I think it’s still even deeper than that a little bit. When you
see an airplane. You’d be at the bottom of the Mariana Trench and that’s the top of the ocean.
The airplanes flying. It’s wild. We’re like remember our sins and God’s like, where are they? I
don’t know what you’re talking about. It’s beautiful. Pray with me. (Prayer).

Turn with me to Colossians 2. We have a simple message. It’s not complicated. The Gospel is not
complicated. I think sometimes you know smart people, really intelligent people, can get really
tripped up in the message of the Gospel because they think there is more to it. They think
there’s an intelligence behind it. There’s really not. It’s simple. It’s surface level. It’s so simple.
And I think it can trip somebody up that is intelligent. In Colossians, we read about philosophies,
the world. And in vs. 4. it speaks about being deceived by persuasive words and persuasive
things. If you think of philosophies, they can complicate the Gospel. Jesus comes into the
picture and philosophy kind of tries to put Jesus in some part of it, like the knowledge of the
world. Yeah, Jesus falls into a good moral person.

This is where he goes, but the philosophy of this and that. And you’re following it and it’s simple. It’s simple. It’s Christ crucified. It’s the finished work. It’s our sins are buried. They’re hidden. They’re gone. And do we believe that? Do
we grow in that? Do we trust in that? So, I think if you read in vs. 3. I think when it comes to
philosophies, – philosophies, there’s usually one or two men behind the thought. They have a
thinking of something and that’s it.

This book here is written by many authors over many, many years in different places. It’s like,
it’s a work of God. It’s a work of God. So when you find yourself being caught up in maybe – we
have a lot of smart people here. If we get caught up in these philosophies, it’s important to come
back to the baseline which is basically God’s Word versus man. It comes down to that. It’s God
versus man. And if you believe in God, if you can get to that part which is pretty easy if you ask
me.

If you just think about going to a museum and you see a painting. You see it, and you don’t
question if there was a painter. There was a painter. You go to the museum and there was a
painter. The creation is evidence of a Creator. If you get to that point where God exists, it’s easy
to get further. Because if God exists like P. Jon Sabo says a lot, expect miracles. Expect these
things to be true. Expect amazing works. Expect the parting of the Red Sea. If God exists, all of
that is possible. It’s important for us to know that.

Philosophies, it’s man. And then you have the work of God. You look at the work of the Bible.
We have the work of God, so can you trust God or are you trusting man? I think, yeah, God
communicates. Another thing, if God exists then God is a communicator. He communicates to
us. If God exists, wouldn’t God want to make himself known? That’s where Christ comes in. He
makes himself known through Christ. He doesn’t just spin the world into existence and then put
his hands up and walk away. And say, okay, there’s existence. Like physics. Make physics and
then I’m done. Walk away. No. No. He comes into the world. He comes into physics and time
and space and like communicates to us. Hey, this is me. I’m love. This is my heart. That’s
important.

Stay in Colossians with me in vs. 8. Men versus God. Not according to Christ. Where does
Christ fit into this? That’s where philosophy gets tripped up. Philosophy doesn’t know what to do
with Christ. They can deal with God. They can get behind God. Theism or all these things.
Deism. We can kind of understand God and he’s up there. But Christ? The cross? The blood?
That’s like it trips philosophy up. There’s a gentleman Jordan Peterson if you follow him. I don’t really, but I’ve heard. He’s caught up in that right now. He’s caught up in this idea of Christ. He doesn’t know what to do with him.

He’s like Christ. It makes sense but it’s not. He’s just, he has to let go. We have to let go of our
idea of knowledge and wisdom in the natural and give it to God. God, I don’t understand what it
is. What is wisdom? Teach me. If you can just come to God in humility, he can teach us these
things.

Going on in Colossians 2:13-14. That’s it. That’s the message. He’s nailed it to the cross, and
all we have to do is believe. All we have to do is believe. It’s the simplest thing in the world. A
person in a vegetative state that can only hear can do that. Like that’s amazing. That’s the
simplest thing that God could require of us basically you could say. Just believe. Just believe.
If you think about the Gospels, go through the Gospels and you have all these men and people
in the Gospels they can’t do something. I wrote down here the paralytic, Matthew 9:2. He couldn’t
walk himself to Jesus. Maybe he heard this person he touched Jesus and he was healed. He
just went up to Jesus and touched Jesus and he was healed. This paralytic is thinking I can’t do
that. I can’t go up and walk and touch Jesus. But he has a group that is faithful and brings him
to Jesus.

Then you got the woman who touched the hem of his garment. She couldn’t be in public. She
heard Jesus heals. Jesus heals. You just need to touch him or she’s hearing Jesus is around
and I can’t go. That’s where the public follows him. I’m not allowed to be in public. By faith she
just decided it’s okay.

There’s all these times in the Bible, in the Gospels, where we see people that aren’t able to do
something but by faith Christ is making it possible for them to be healed. The mute man can’t
speak. The blind man who can’t see Jesus. If you think about the talk of the day back in the
time. If you just touch Jesus, you can be healed. The blind man is thinking well I can’t see
Jesus. I don’t know where he is. I can’t touch him because I can’t see him. Where is he? Then
you think Jesus makes it possible for them by crying out. Son of David, have mercy on me!
Have mercy on me! Then you think about the mute man who can’t cry out. But he can see so he
goes and touches. It’s beautiful these things what is limited in someone but where God meets
that person. God comes down and communicates to us. He comes down. We could never go to
him.

Moses tried it himself to deliver Israel. It doesn’t work. It didn’t work. He goes away 40 years.
He’s alone. Then God comes to him. No, this is what we are doing. We’re doing it together. I’m
doing it. Are you available? I can use you. He’s saying to each one of us. I can use you. But
your own efforts, your own striving, your own things like leave it. I don’t need that. I’m not going
to use that. I’m going to use your availability. I’m going to use your availability.

We too like in the world we don’t maybe have physical ailments but we have spiritual ailments
that are preventing us from coming to Christ: doubt, disbelief, different situations that we are
facing that are not physical disabilities but we are spiritually disabled maybe. That’s another
thing. God is going to meet you. God is going to meet you. Just simply pray that Christ reveal
yourself. I don’t know much. I’m a simple person, but just reveal yourself to me. And he’s faithful.
Matthew 11:4-5 it says tell John the Baptist the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the
deaf hear. These are miracles we should expect if God exists, right? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Um, do
we believe God? Can we believe him? You know.

Yeah. I think that’s it. Being available. Being available to God. Can we believe God when he says our sins are forgiven? Can we believe that? That’s the only requirement he is asking of us. Understanding that. He’s called us
righteous. He’s called us holy. And we’re like this. Can we believe this? As we believe this, we’ll
find ourselves walking in this and becoming this. Amen.

P. Schaller –

Let’s see we have Esther. You know Esther who sang there, right? She’s from
Finland. The guitar player here, Jonathan. You want to raise your hand Jonathan? There he is.
He’s from Finland. Benscu the song leader was from where? Finland. I’m feeling a little Finnish
myself. What other Fins do we have here? Do you want to just stand up if you are from Finland?

I don’t know why I am doing this. I am just enjoying it. Wow, these are, you know, great people.
Avery gave an excellent message. Wasn’t it excellent? Really. Excellent. I want to repeat it as
he gave such a good message. I just want to repeat it. Not improve on it. I can’t do that. We all
know that, but it’s a beautiful thought about the life of faith. The believer lives by faith.
I didn’t know that about Jordan Peterson. I’ve heard about him. I think I listened to a Youtube
video some time in the last year. My sons know about him. Young people know about him. To
become a believer, it’s a big deal, isn’t it? You can’t, God draws people. He draws people to the
edge of reason and then God says do you believe in me, right? We say yes and he says jump. I
believe in you but I’m not jumping. I’m not jumping.

I give that illustration of being in Finland in the cold winter. There’s the bridge ten miles away but
because the ice is frozen on the lake, you can drive across the lake. Yeah, there’s a road that
goes. It’s right on the ice. You go across and save ten miles of travel. How many are going to do
that? Yeah, I believe it will hold me. I believe, but I’m using the bridge. I’m using the bridge,
okay? Yes, I believe. I believe. Yes, I believe. I’m not jumping but I believe.

That’s where intellectual assent is reasonable but can I jump. God is saying I will save you. I will
save you. You need me. But you can’t come to me without faith. So, this is the victory that
overcomes the world, even our faith. It’s going to come down to a battle in the world we live in
between believing or not believing. Those are the battle lines. Do I believe or do I don’t believe?
The believers are the salt and light of the world. They have another kind of wisdom. They are
different. They have another motivation.

The morning message was about motivation. I want to have you turn to Song of Solomon 3 for the love story
which I think all of you like that. I do. Song of Solomon, this book on love. Love. Wow! Love.
Solid awesome true love. God is love. God is AGAPE love. He is a love that never fails. Does it
always feel good? You can ask Jesus in Gethsemane. Do you feel good? Not at all. But I love.
What do you mean you love? I love the world. I love my Father but I’m dying. I’m dying. But I
love. Isn’t that amazing.

When Jesus comes into your heart, you jump and he catches you. You fall. You jump and you
fall three feet and three hundred feet, three hundred feet and he catches you. You jump and
three feet he catches you. But he catches you. Yeah, Jesus! Yeah, Jesus! He catches us.
Where does he put us after he catches you? He puts you up higher and you look down at this
and you see the reason how people live. You understand them because you have been here.
Where is it in the Bible? He sets us on a Rock higher than ourselves. That we have a wisdom
that is from above. We have a different nature. We have a different life. We believe and out of
our hearts is love. Love for who? Who? Love for God. You have new motivation. You have love,
love for God.

I’m reading in the Old Testament the laws, and one of them is if your enemy’s donkey is lost,
and you find the donkey, what do you do with the donkey? Bring it back to where? Back to the
owner who is your enemy. Bring it back to your enemy and say, excuse me, sir. Here is your
donkey. I found him. He is yours. Have a good day. God bless you. That’s the law.
I found some U-Haul blankets along side the road. I pulled over and picked them up and it said,
return to U-Haul if you find them, Mr. Tom! So I put them in my car. I haven’t returned them yet!
But I plan to if it’s convenient! What’s the meaning of law? The fulfilling of law is actually love.
You have a new heart. You have love. You have a new motivation.

We said this morning my salvation motivates me in a new life. By the way, I’m not talking about
self-righteousness. I didn’t say that – I said that example pre-meditating it not to draw attention
to me, but for you and I to be drawn unto something very much needed in the day we live in.
What is it? Not judging and canceling. A new thing. It’s called mercy. It’s forgiveness.

It’s investment. It’s the Gospel. That’s what’s needed. It’s too harsh. It’s too cold. It’s too serious and
judgmental. It’s too self-righteous in our world. Everybody is judging people. Every body is
presuming and every body is hiding. You hide when people are judging. They will find me out.
Good news! God already found me out. God found me out. God found us out.
We are three things: We are guilty. We are afraid. We are ashamed. But when you jump and
God saves you, you are not guilty. You’re not afraid. And you’re not ashamed. You are loved.
When you are loved, then you love. He loved me first (1 John. 4:19). Now we love him because he
first loved us. So we are saved.

Now, the second thing. Not only are we saved and it motivates us, but we are now looking at life
and understanding that love is the better way to live. It helps me in my relationships. It helps me
in my purpose. It guides us in a world that needs love. Love is a new way. It’s a new and living
way. It actually is a moving way. You know in the beep, beep! The Road Runner. The Road
Runner is a bird. P. Phil Norman knows all of this. The bird and then there is a coyote. The
coyote, Gary Groenewold knows about coyotes. And he said coyotes are just, they just are so
persistent. Coyotes just step after step. They go, if they sense they are on a trail after a deer
who is sick or wounded, ten miles later that coyote is still going. Beep, beep! Beep, beep! What
happens when it goes, when the bird goes fast? The road moves. The road moves.

The Bible says that Christ is a new and living way. The escalator at the airport. The horizontal
one. Just moving. Are you on it? Because when Jesus does this, then it motivates your heart.
You say I want to believe. I want to go on in faith. I want to believe. But there are times when I
hit a wall. I’m disappointed with myself. I look at myself. I have questions like we said this
morning. R. C. Sproul questioned his salvation. Was he elected or not? He was in a bit of a
dilemna. We addressed it this morning by saying that God is not only the God of Calvinism with
their boxes and concepts which are precious and important but he transcends the concepts of
men. His ways are past finding out. When he says whoever believes, do you know what it
means? Whoever believes. That’s what it means. Whoever believes, what happens? He is
saved by grace. Who? Whoever believes. Come.

Drink of the water. Whoever is thirsty, come. Drink freely. Because God is love. And he didn’t make us – he has no delight in the death of the wicked. He made us and has great pleasure in us believing in him and trusting in him.
You are saved by grace. Forgiven and sealed with the Holy Spirit. Of all the Father has given
me, I have lost none. It was before the foundation of the world. He wants us to know that he is
our friend and tells us secrets.

I once came up with an illustration on that. Forgive me if you heard this before. I don’t know if I
was in a class when I told it. I said if you work in the McDonald’s over here and you go into work
and the manager says sweep the parking lot. So you take the broom and you go out and you
sweep it. That’s when you are a servant and he’s the master. But Jesus said you are not
servants. You are my friends because I tell you what’s behind. I tell you the secret. So you go
into work at McDonald’s and the manager is your friend. He says, here. You need to sweep the
parking lot because the owner is coming at 10:00. he told me that if that parking lot is clean then
everybody is working I reward you. He tells them something behind it.

You see when you feel and sense that your faith has good results, then that is motivating you in
your life. When I feel my life is better off by being here, then I live by faith and this is part of my
life because I live by faith. When I sense that prayer actually has an impact, that the spirit of
prayer can come upon you. I don’t know if it will come upon you in the middle of the night.
One man said to P. Hadley, I was suicidal the other night. I went to the bridge actually, Francis
Scott Bridge. P. Hadley said that is so interesting because at that same hour, two in the
morning, God woke me up and I got on my knees and prayed for you. He said I did not jump.
The police car came and I left and they picked me up and brought me to Shepherd Pratt.

Do you know what? When you feel or sense that prayer is answered, when you feel and sense that the life of faith has value, when you sense in your heart that Jesus is here, and he is close
to us; when we see in our country the craziest of what I feel is very superficial, shallow living, it
tires people out. It is boring. It is dull. It is not insightful, motivating, spiritual. It’s not moving me,
pushing me, pulling me. It’s not having any effect on me. It’s dull and dead. And people turn to
things for some excitement. We want to say to you, don’t turn to those things. Turn to God. When he says, jump – jump! And believe God. And come to God as you are. God will give you a new life and motivate you in
your life.

I want to show you this illustration from Song of Solomon 3:1. How about it? Can you identify
the one you love as God? I think you can. If you aren’t there yet, it’s going to come. I sought for
it as a young guy. I wanted to know if God’s real. If he’s real, I want to follow him with all of my
heart. He’ll take care of me and do whatever he wants to do. I sought him whom my heart loves.
I don’t mean a human being. I’m talking about God. It’s a parallel. The love with a person – your
girlfriend or boyfriend or husband or wife or whatever it might be – there is a parallel of a
romantic love with a spiritual love. The romantic love is a beautiful gift, a beautiful thing between
two people,and it is to be respected and appreciated. God does it and at the same time there is
a love that will never die, a love that will never let you down, a love that will never fail, a love that
is eternal and it’s between you and your Creator.

So she wanted him, vs. 1. Yes. Yeah. Have you found him lately? Do you know what I mean? I
think you do. vs. 2. What motivates you to get out of bed? For me, it’s got to be an emergency.
Is the house on fire? How badly is it on fire? Yeah. You know. Is there a criminal in the house
that broke into that house? Don’t bother me. I’m in bed. But to get out of bed for God, that’s
pretty awesome. To get out of bed. I’m comfortable but to go beyond comfort and seek him. This
is motivation.

By the way, this world is so much hungry to know about motivation. The psychologists, the
politicians, the business world – every body is trying to figure how does a kid finish school? He’s
not motivated. How does he play a sport? He’s not motivated. How does he play a musical
instrument? He’s not motivated. How does he learn another language? He’s not motivated. How
does he keep a job? He’s not motivated. It’s a big problem with people. All of us.

But this isn’t a problem. It’s what you and I have. We have Jesus. That’s what we have. Jesus
drawing us. Following Jesus. Believing in Jesus. Faith overcomes the world. The world doesn’t
have that motivation. We have it. We look for him and find him. We want to listen to him and
hear him. We want to sacrifice for him and feel like it’s not a problem. I give you everything. I
give you a thousand lives. If I lived a thousand lives, I’d give them all to you cause nothing
makes sense to me except you. You are God. You created the world and you made us and you
gave us a little bit. C. S. Lewis says God doesn’t show himself in a certain way because he
wants us to live by faith. And the devil doesn’t show himself in a certain way because he
doesn’t want us to find out who he is. Do we see both of them? Do we see God and we see his
enemy?

We are in it. We are drawn to him because love, love changes things. Love heals relationships.
Love changes a community. Love heals a family. Love says don’t worry about it. I can take it.
Don’t worry about it. You can hit me again. It’s okay. I can take it. Love bears all things,
believes, endures. Love never fails. Love. Love cares about the city of Baltimore. Love cares
about the people in our neighborhood. Love cares about life, about this week. What is God
going to do this week? God is here. God is present. And she is saying where is he?
Let’s finish it. vs. 2. There’s a big difference between being a tourist and a missionary. What’s
the difference between a tourist and a missionary? What’s the difference? Tourism isn’t wrong
but I’m just saying there is a difference. What is it? It’s my goal. My goal. Tourist is to have a
good time. Missionary is to seek him, to seek souls. It’s to have an impact. It’s to see the work of
God. Whether it’s in a swamp or in a city, in a hotel or in a ghetto.

The missionary is looking for God and looking for his will and doing something by faith. A tourist is paying money and having services and wanting to have a good time. The amazing thing is when you seek him, probably
you are going to end up having a very good time. Probably. You’re end up seeing things that
you would have never seen. Meeting people you would have never met. Experiencing
something you would never have organized. Probably you’re going to find God in your life in
some place because your purpose is of such a nature.

So she goes through the streets and the back alleys looking for Jesus. She wants to find Jesus.
That’s what she’s looking for. By the way, how do you find a husband? How do you find a wife? I
would recommend seek Jesus. How do you find your life? I would recommend seek Jesus. If
you seek Jesus it would be amazing. When Adam needed a wife, it was the Lord who said it. It’s
not good for him. He’s getting a little luney. I don’t think the bachelor pad thing is going to work.
The dishes are piled this high. The pizza boxes, there’s two piles that go to the ceiling. This guy
it’s not good for him to be alone. Let’s see. He needs a cat. He needs a dog. He needs a
parakeet. What does he need? Monopoly game? No, that’s not going to work. There’s nobody
here. He puts him to sleep. Wakes up and there she is. Wow! That’s amazing.

God will take care of you. God can lead you. You don’t have to revert to the flesh. You just seek
him and you will find him and this is the meaning here, I mean in application. Look at vs. 2-3.
The watchmen are the, you know, the educators and the psychologists and the people that are
– the government and all the people running things. They found me and what did they say? I said, vs. 3. They basically didn’t have an answer. We don’t know what you are talking about. We are like here. We came to the edge but we didn’t
jump. Who are you? I jumped and I’m in another place. You don’t know what I am talking about,
but that’s okay. I don’t expect the world to understand me. I expect them to ridicule me. Mock
me. Not understand me. And that’s fine with me. I went a little bit beyond them. I passed by
them. I passed by their unbelief. I passed by their schools. I passed by their way of
understanding when I found the one I love.

vs. 4. You know, I’ve got a book over here. I want to finish this up. In 1946 in Dallas, the school
board, they passed a law or rule. I found this interesting. The Dallas high schools, April 23, the
board of education, they made this regulation that in the school they were teaching for one half
credit. One half unit credit toward high school graduation they studied in 40 class periods of 90
minutes the New Testament. Or 45 minute periods in no case were fewer than 40 class
sessions be accepted. It was a New Testament study course. It was required for graduation.
They learned the New Testament. There were 40 ninety minute class periods. What I like about
that in this book Our Country, God and Country Encyclopedia of quotations and the review of
the religious history in our country. How we are Christians. How we taught. How we believe.
What we did. How leaders spoke. What presidents said. What was in our culture. How much we
embraced it. How much we went for it.

Now we are in another place, but the principle is this one: We live by faith. That’s how we live.
And the effect is real. It’s real. People need what we have to say. I think there is a hunger and
people are troubled. There is a great need and so don’t underestimate your walk of faith, your
attendance here. You’re prayers. Your love. Do not underestimate your walk. Don’t
underestimate what it means to get out of bed and seek him whom your soul loves. Look for
him. I don’t think the bad thing is much as the issue as it does smack of something – it must
have been a big deal to get out of bed for this. She loved him and wanted to find him.

I might forfeit something for him. I might lose something, an opportunity, for him. I might lose something
right in front of me that is a great thing, but no. I’m seeking him and God bring it to me and show
me and lead me. I need you and I want you and that’s how we live. We live by faith.

Amen.

 

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