The things we see in our world are moved by evil. Let us still look to God in all of this. Give no place to the devil. God will shine and He shall reveal His goodness and love. (2 Timothy 3:13; Galatians 6:7)
Speaker(s): Thomas Schaller
7:00 PM on 5/25/2022
P. Schaller –
P. Stan, would you mind coming up and praying for our service? P. Stan Collins is in from Argentina. We
welcome him and it’s so good to have you. Love you. (Prayer). Thank you. Good song. Beautiful.
Turn to 2 Timothy 3. P. Steve mentioned that we are somehow with heavy hearts. I think we are
because we have seen recently evil in the streets. The mass killing in Texas at a school; Buffalo,
New York a man going to brunch on the train in New York City murdered, and we see evil. So,
it’s an opportunity for me to say a few things that may help us understand the world that we
live in. I do it with a light heart, with thanksgiving, that we understand something about the
world. At the same time, identifying with people in pain tonight because of losing a child or a
loved one and of course all of this work of evil that has happened through history has a reason.
I want to put three words on the screen: God, Satan, and man. We could put here the word
“David” as I want to use him as an example.
God is Almighty. God is not evil. Everything about God is perfect. He has no pleasure in evil. He never designed for us to sin. He did give man freedom to choose and this is amazing, unbelievable element of life for us that I can make
choices and they have consequences. The NFL football player, quarterback, who was killed on
the highway in Florida because he was drunk. Top draft choice for quarterback. I think he was
from Pittsburgh. Killed that night when he was drunk. He made choices and they have
Man, and who is man? God’s ways. How does God work? I like this verse, Job 33:14. He does
not give account of any of his ways. God does as he pleases as being sovereign. God is wise,
also. God cannot do evil. He allows for evil and he allows for man to make choices like in the
Garden of Eden choosing to sin and yet God, the angels fell without any salvation. Man has
fallen but he has salvation if he chooses as God elects and does his work draws people. Draws
them to himself. Man has the freedom. God has the sovereignty. Amazing.
We are living in a world where we see a lot of issues of interest whether they are climactic like
weather, weather changes. Tornadoes that rip through the middle of our country taking people
into the air and throwing them into the woods somewhere dead. Natural catastrophe. We see
economic situations in our leadership. We see men making decisions for all of us. They are
being made on very high levels that effects our lives. We see bad governments in parts of the
world where people are murdered and tortured for different reasons. There is evil. We kill
babies, full term babies in the womb of a mother without even blinking an eye and even sell
body parts. Wow! What kind of world are we living in and how do we process this and think
So, one theologian made a very interesting point about these three. I’m breaking it down. He
said in the story of Macbeth, William Shakespeare wrote the play and Macbeth killed King Duncan. Macbeth killed King Duncan in the play. Who killed King Duncan? Macbeth. But wait a
minute. William Shakespeare wrote the play. Okay. Who killed King Duncan? William
Shakespeare wrote the play and in the play he had Macbeth murder the king. Who is behind
the story? God. God is behind the story called life.
But God doesn’t do evil but he has allowed for evil to be here. He has allowed for the devil to
roam about seeking whom he may devour. And he told us that. That the devil is real and he can
seek. He can destroy. He can tempt. He can murder. The devil can do that. But wait. Isn’t God
good? God is good. But he made the universe a certain way and he gave us this world we are
living in in the same way that William Shakespeare wrote a play and he’s responsible for
Macbeth murdering the king in the play, but in the play he’s not the one making the decision.
Macbeth is making the decision.
God is not making the decision for evil men to be evil men. He’s actually saying the opposite.
He’s actually saying I am God. I made the world so it would be good. One day be perfect
without sin, without death, without evil. But you are living in an evil age. You are living in a
world that is evil. What are you going to do about it? That’s amazing. We are living in a world
where evil is here and how am I going to live in an evil world? How do I process this world that I
Are you angry with God? Job was. And Job didn’t have any idea. By the way, at the end of the
story of Job, God never said to Job that it was the devil that destroyed your family. God never
said that to him. Because really the ultimate issue isn’t for me to understand the mechanics of
how everything operates because he gives no account of his ways. The issue for me is to be
understanding who he is. Understanding his nature. Understanding the Spirit of God, the mind
of God, the ways of God. To be close to God. Do you know what has happened with the murder
in Texas I am sure in some people’s hearts? They’re angry with God about it. But what do they
know about God? Who do they know God is? What do they know? They live in emotional
reaction and to be honest I could understand how some Christians are also jumping in and
joining in the chorus about how wrong things are in this world and blaming God for those
things. They’re blaming God for things they don’t understand.
The upshot of the message tonight I think if we could understand it, it is that I must go with God
and get deep with God and not be a fool. Not join in on the chorus and even in my heart. By the
way, this is a big temptation for us when we don’t understand things. We would just be sowing.
We would be giving a place to the devil. Giving him a place. Let’s write that in here. Giving a
place to the devil. This is Ephesians 4. Give no place to him. How does that work?
Let’s turn to David – no, we are in 2 Timothy 3, aren’t we? I’ll make a couple preliminary points as
you follow this with me. 2 Timothy 3:13, there are men that are 50 years old, 40 years old and they
don’t get better. They get worse. They lie and they keep lying and it doesn’t get better.
It gets worse. That’s a very interesting thing to think about. You can be 20 years old. You can be 16
years old and I can just get into it and I am being deceitful. I am lying and it becomes a way of
life for me and I do it my whole life. I don’t get out of it. I’m not born again. I’m not humble. I’m
not redeemed. I’m not Spirit filled. I’m not enlightened. I’m not saved. I might be running
things. I might be in control. I might have a lot of influence over a lot of people. I might have
influence over a whole country. And just keep going deceiving and being deceived as a way of
life. Yes, that’s the way it can go.
I know it’s easy when we are young to be naïve and have some idealistic mindset about the
world I live in, but it’s very good for us to understand what the Scripture – the Bible will do a lot
of good for you if you memorize the Bible, if you meditate on the Bible. It will continue to speak
to you your whole life. It never gets old. It gets deeper and deeper. It never – it’s not wrong.
The Spirit will teach you.
We’re talking about something that is in our face, in our country and everybody talking and
thinking about these things and so on. I want you to help to think about it and process it. vs. 13.
They do not get liberated. They do not have joy. They are being deceived. They are misled. They
are going to be shamed.
That’s why this woke culture I just anticipate it’s collapse. It’s a shame to believe in those lives,
embrace them. Take away our freedom, our liberty to have another opinion to disagree with
them. I disagree with it. I agree racism is sinful. I’m against racism, of course. But transgender
hormones, hormone blockers are illegal in Finland and Sweden. They know more than we do.
They’re smarter than we are. That’s just shameful. People should go to prison for those kind of
things. Grooming children to be homosexuals in kindergarten and first, second grade. They
should go to jail those people. Every teacher, every administrator, every politician. That’s evil.
Look at the verse again, vs. 13. But we heard recently that monkey pox – did you hear in the
news? – monkey pox is a sexually transmitted disease amongst homosexuals. We don’t have a
problem. That’s not going to be a covid-19 pandemic.
That’s not the same thing. That’s a different thing. That’s an STD. Do you think you can mock God? Can we mock God? No, we fear God. We respect God. We understand how things can go sideways. How wrong the world can
be. We understand God knows what he’s doing. He knows how to do it. Believe me, I’m just
stirred up about it and want to bring up somethings about the world we are living in.
Go to Ephesians 4:27, learn to deny yourself and not give him a place. That’s quite tricky sometimes. I
need God’s help all the time that I will not be giving him a place. I’m not having him around me.
You resist him and he flees from you. These people that are just filling their minds and hearts
with video games murdering people, Hollywood movies, violence and all this stuff. Also, kids
that have problems and they’re not being counseled, helpfully counseled.
Church life. Church life. Where is the church life? It has a tremendous effect on people what I hear, what goes in my heart, what I believe. My worship of God is powerful. It’s very powerful. You are not giving
him the devil a place. We’ll see that in a second.
Go to David. It’s 1 Chronicles 24. No, 1 Samuel 24. Wait a minute. Sorry. 2 Samuel 24:1, God was angry
with Israel. We could say – I’m doing this just for the exercise – God is angry with the United
States and his angry is kindled against the United States of America. What’s he going to do?
He’s going to have David number Israel. We would say, what’s wrong with that? What’s wrong
with that? And in the text we’ll see it was a sin. David was moved by – and now go to 1 Chron.
24 and we see the inside scoop on that and it is that the Lord used the devil. Vs. 1. I meant 29.
Is it 21? There we go. Thank you. Very good. 1 Chronicles 21:1, these three words. God is against
Israel. God uses Satan to tempt David and David sins and gives place to the devil. Then the
judgment of God came on Israel because of David’s sin.
How could we, how do we understand that? It just shows me there are these three. Let me
redo it here. It shows me God is Almighty. God can be unhappy with us. God can use Satan to
do evil. God can use Satan to tempt me. He can tempt me. Satan can tempt me. Go number
Israel, David. You are a great man. You are a mighty man. You are a great king. Find out how
many people you have. Was it in the army or was it in the whole nation? Go find out how many
people you have and it says in the text that David said, I have sinned. We have God using Satan
to have David tempted. He's tempted but God cannot tempt anyone. But God can use the devil
or use evil in the world to direct, to speak just like it’s happening today all over our world. It’s
happening here. Can anyone deny it that the evil is present.
But the believer has an amazing privilege and that is that he can overcome the devil in Rev. 20
and the devil is working and doing his work accusing the brethren night and day and we
overcome him by the word of the testimony – the word of the testimony of Christ, the blood of
the Lamb and we love not our lives unto the death. We are willing to lose our lives. We have
God and greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world. We overcome evil. We’re not
denying it nor are we living here saying how could that ever happen. Are you kidding? It’s
happening all the time every day all around us. This is an evil world.
Another thing about our understanding of it and this is a very important thing; we understand
the sin nature of man. How could that evil happen? You wouldn’t kill a child in a school but you
would lie to your wife and tell her you are going out with the guys when you are going with a
woman who is not your wife. You are a liar. If I have broken the law on one point, I am guilty of
all. I am a sinner. I have a sin nature and it’s us that God has chosen to live in this evil world, to
bear witness and manifest the living God in a world that is sinful and is actually governed in
many ways by the force and the power of Satan, the prince of the air, the god of this world. Is
this encouraging? It’s sobering. It’s sobering.
The next part of it maybe I just hope this will be edifying. It’s true. Turn to Galatians 6:7. Do you
know what the deception is? It’s like Psalm 50. The psalmist said you lie and you also commit
adultery and then there’s no bad effect and you say God doesn’t care. It doesn’t matter. I can
go on in my lying and my cheating and it doesn’t matter. God is the same as I am. God is like
me. He’s the same as I am. Christ says no he isn’t the same. He’s very different from you. His
thoughts are different and his ways are different. He’s not like you. You are deceived.
Vs. 7. Be not deceived. How could you be deceived? Because I think God is like me. He lies like
me. He cheats like me. He lusts like me. He doesn’t care. He’s far away. He doesn’t care. He
made us this way. This is our nature. It’s natural to be a sinner or whatever you would call it.
This is the way it is. God is saying, oh, no. You have no idea how wrong you are. You have no
idea. You don’t have a clue how I am totally different from you. I am a holy God. I’m an
awesome God. I’m a satisfying God. I am God Almighty and fear me. Confess your sin and
repent and turn to me. I will heal you. I will satisfy you. I will anoint you. I will bless you. I am
God. Okay. Be not deceived.
People say the name God but what do they know about God? They know nothing about God.
They have no sense of the holiness of God. They have no sense of what sin is. They have no
sense of judgment. My meditation recently has been about the White Throne Judgment and I
was thinking about the White Throne judgment. It says every one from the ocean, from the
ground, their bodies will come up and they will stand before God at the White Throne judgment
and the books will be opened and they’re be judged out of those books.
It says the small and the great will be there. I was thinking of presidents of the United States. I
was thinking of popes. I was thinking of preachers. I was thinking of people who say they are
Christians. I’m thinking of athletes. I’m thinking of the greatest athletes, the greatest scientists,
the greatest writers, the greatest people in history. I means nothing. Those are all gifts and
talents for this life. It means nothing. Be not deceived. You are deceived. You are lost. You are
without Christ. You are without God. You have no hope. You have no covenant. You have no
promise. You are deceived. You live in this world.
Here’s another interesting thing. Why was there murder or mass murder in Texas? What do you
think God is saying? If everyone of those children go to heaven and is saying something to us.
This world is evil. But it’s also very good. Very good. I gave you four years with your child. I gave
you five years with your child. And now your child is gone. Are you ready to meet me? Is your
community turning to me? Does your community recognize what evil is and are you turning to
me in humility?
You know what is interesting. In our country we hear people say how could this happen? Then
the politicians are all saying – they don’t ever talk about God and humility. Abraham Lincoln did
many times. Many times, presidents did. Many times. Franklin Roosevelt prayed over the radio to the whole nation at the end of his talks in the 1930s radio talks, chats, fireside chats. You
have a responsibility to lead the nation in the fear of God and before God. Okay. What about
other leaders? What about university presidents? What about hospitals? What about police
departments? Are they ever talking about God and we should turn to God and fear God and not
be afraid of people that disagree with you and me. Are you afraid?
The theme of our Convention in June is Take Courage. Take Courage. You’re not afraid. We fear
God instead of men. We fear God. Don’t fear him who can kill your body but fear him who can
take body and soul and cast it into hell. Fear God. These are the end times. Fear God. This is
what we need to hear and think about.
Let’s finish the verse. Vs. 7. It’s a joke. Oh, is it a joke? Is it a joke? No. No. If we woke up this
morning, it’s the grace of God. If we are alive tonight, it’s the grace of God. You walk carefully
before God. You don’t live like the world. They don’t care. They swear. They use the name of
God. They curse God. They talk like fools. Their foolish in their language and their
understanding. They are imbeciles. They are morons. They are fools. Are you one of those? I
don’t want to be like a fool on the road to hell living like hell and arrogant as anything. Drunk.
Walking down 95. Get hit by a car, run over by a truck. My whole life is destroyed. Do I want to
be a fool and take a drug and overdose on some drug that’s sold by some derelict who’s
motivated by money and ego and blindness. It’s like it’s not, it’s not a joke. That’s how I look at
life and I know that’s how you do, too.
If you have some secret sin in your life, deal with it. God is not mocked. We can get away with it
maybe. Maybe. I got a great story on that. Follow it with me. Nebuchadnezzar was arrogant like
a peacock. He was an arrogant tyrant. His world was his world. He was arrogant as anything.
Look at all of this is became of me. The Lord said, okay. I’m going to have you eat grass. You’re
finger nails are going to grow like claws. You’re hair is going to be like feathers. The dew is going
to be on you. You’re going to live in the woods. You’re going to go out there and live like an
animal. I’m going to humble you.
Nebuchadnezzar was humbled and he came to him after seven units. Seven, right? Seven units.
I’m not sure how it goes in the Hebrew. I don’t know if it’s seven months or seven years, but it
was a good period of time to humble that guy. And he goes it’s God that’s responsible for
everything. It’s God. And God restored him.
Now comes his, was it his – He was defeated by the Persians. The Persian king, Belshazzar. He’s
the same way. Arrogant as anything. Handwriting on the wall. It’s over. There wasn’t any room
for repentance. Tonight, your life is required of you. You’re done. He was murdered that night.
Do you know what it means to me? If you were in a high school party and you almost died in
that party, a car accident, or falling out of a window or drowning in a lake and you didn’t die. Or
you were shot and there is a bullet in your body tonight still and God saved your life, then you should be very thankful for that because some don’t make it. Some drown. Some are flown
medivac and they die in the helicopter. Some are shot and killed and some do not make it. If
you made it, you and I should be on our face saying thank you, Lord. I appreciate it. I fear you.
You are not mocked.
And every time God has some signal to say to the United States of America whether it is a
tornado or a mass shooting and you don’t bring your faith into question and say I don’t believe
in God anymore like a fool. But you say, I got to process this. I’m not giving place to the devil.
I’m learning. I don’t like what happened. It hurts me a lot. A relative died or a terrible thing
happened or I’m upset about something. That’s okay. You’ll get a grip. You’ll be okay.
Don’t give the devil a place cause there’s something deeper going on. You have free will. You
can make choices. You can believe God when the world doesn’t. You can trust him when you
are on a cross and say, my God, my God. Jesus always said, my Father, my Father, until he was
on the cross. And what did he say? He said my God, my God.
Always he said my Father. Pray to the Father. He said it all the time but on the cross he said, my God. That was the lowest point. He didn’t doubt him. He didn’t doubt him. He knew. He believed him. He overcame the devil.
He overcame the devil in his faith. He died in faith. He overcame the devil.
That’s the thing that the devil can’t stand about us that we have a victory over him. Whatever
he does in this world as evil as it may be and as painful and sad that it may be, it will not turn us
away from the belief that our God is a good God, a wise God, a powerful God, a loving God. We
are here being tested. Three days later, Jesus comes out of the tomb. Yes, I knew this would
happen. Yes, I have overcome death and the devil. Yes, I am going to a throne at the right hand
of my Father forever and ever and I’m bringing these people with me.
While we are in this world, let us learn how to live. Let’s read it and we’ll finish. Vs. 7. Be careful
what you sow. I have a short list. You may sow lust. It may bring disease in your body. You may
sow idolatry. And it will lead you to being cruel and degrading in practices. By the way, all these
sexual stuff that’s talked about and even in textbooks. Are you kidding me? You are a weird,
perverted people. Sins of anger, murder, wars, strife, misery. Sins of appetite, drunkenness,
obesity, delirium. All of these things I can sow. I can sow with my body. I can sow addictions. I
can sow with my psychology, my temper, my anger. I can sow with idolatry. I can sow – the first
one was lust. I can do it. I can sow unbelief. Live in your unbelief for a while and you know what
it should do? Wake you up. It’s not fun to live in unbelief. It’s better to live in faith. It’s better. I
want to sow to the Spirit.
Go to the next verse, vs. 8. What do we sow in the Spirit? We are sowing an attitude toward
God. I have a sauna in my garage. It’s a quiet place for me in the morning. In the early morning,
I can go into that room and just be there without any books or anything, just sit in the sauna by
myself talking out loud cause my wife may be sleeping and I don’t want to disturb her. So, I’m in there and I can just wait on God. I’ve enjoyed it the last mornings. Just being quiet. Based on
the Sunday night message, the Father seeks such to worship him in Spirit and truth. That
message stirred my heart to think of the value of worshipping God and being quiet and
worshipping God and it affecting our lives.
I say to God with our busy schedules, what do you want me to do today? And so, the Lord says,
Jeff Harrington. So, I call him up today to go to lunch with him tomorrow. He’s right over here.
The Lord gives me a name and then maybe another name. I’m not saying God is saying this, I’m
just saying what do you want me to do today? And I need to make some decisions. I think of it
ahead of time how I would decide about something. Maybe I don’t know about that. I can’t
make any. I think about it but I have it in prayer. I believe – listen to me carefully.
I believe God is with us and he’s helping us. I don’t believe I could ever do this job. I don’t think
any pastor can do the job. I can’t. I just know that, but I know also if the Lord, if we sow to the
Spirit, then we will reap from the Spirit. If we sow to faith, even in dark hours. Maybe that’s a
very good time to trust God and draw near to God. And sow to the Spirit. I believe every time
we gather here as an assembly, we’re sowing to the Spirit and we are reaping from the Spirit. I
believe when I say in my heart good things and I forgive people. And I forgive them. Maybe I
have a problem but I am able to forgive them. I believe we are sowing to the Spirit and we reap
the Spirit. I believe it’s really true. So, we have faith toward God. We have faith toward men.
We have faith toward ourselves. Sow to the Spirit regarding yourself. To yourself not a fleshly
sowing tearing yourself down but sow to the Spirit regarding yourself. I can do it. We are able. I
believe that. I am sowing to the Spirit. Loving ourselves. Speaking often to ourselves with
psalms, hymns, spiritual songs. We are sowing to the Spirit.
Lastly, do you think the problems we have in our country whether it is the climate or the
murder or the violence or the politics or the economics and maybe what is going to come
ahead, do you think all of that is part of God saying I want my life to shine? I want my people to
have answers. I want my people to sow to the Spirit. I want my people to have a message
ready, to be a counselor, to love. To say I understand. Come be with me at my church. There is
a message there.
Do you think that the darker the night the what? The brighter the light shines. Remember
Barbara Stevens singing that? The darker the night the brighter the light shines. She had a more
feminine voice! That was P. Steven’s first wife. Boy she was a sweet woman. And she would
sing that song, the darker the night the brighter the light shines. Do you think that all of this is
the way God operates and that is for us to learn him and know him and trust him? Give no
place to the devil. Sow to the Spirit and see the work of God.
Our prayer is revival. Our prayer is that people that are confused about their identity will find
their new identity in Christ. Our prayer that people who are alone will find God’s family. Our prayer is that people who have addictions will get release from them. Our prayer is that people
that are troubled and confused and all of that stuff will find a whole new way of thinking that
comes from Jesus Christ and the Spirit of God to us. That’s our prayer. Amen. Let me just say
one more thing. Benscu’s dad and brother are here so that’s P. Yusi. We welcome them and
great to have you.
Please 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.