We live by Spirit and Truth. The foundation of our worship of Christ comes from the Word. The understanding of the mind of God provides the frame for us to live for Him as believers in church life and outside of it. We learn the simplicity of Jesus. We discover that we may act our way to better feelings, while feelings cannot make us act in better ways. Acts 2:41-47

Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
Sermon 11842
11:00 AM on 2/23/2020


P. Schaller –

Introducing our theme this morning. Praise the Lord. Great to see everyone and these gentlemen, my brothers
and friends. They are shocked! Thank you. How do you feel about the people next to you? The
theme that’s on my heart is worship and I’d like you to – the text will be later this morning from
Acts 4. I’d like to turn there now to introduce it and get your minds focused on the subject.
Acts. 4:41-47. Worship. Great big word. Moses went to Pharaoh in Exodus 7 and said let my people
go into the wilderness that we may worship God.

It seems this is of great importance. When they came out of Egypt, the first thing they did was Leviticus, Exodus and Leviticus and instructions on worship. When the Church is born in Acts 2, we have this great sequence here.
Worship (Acts 2:41). If you have 3,000 new believers, what are you going to do with 3,000 new
believers? Pray together. Not a bad idea. Fellowship together. Good idea. But actually what
happened here is written in a sequence. Acts 2:42, I really believe the order of these words are
important because the Bible is inspired.

The first thing mentioned is apostolic doctrine. When you have 3,000 newly saved, they definitely need teaching. They could all pray together, but how do they know the mind behind the prayer? I need apostolic doctrine to establish me in my faith, in the mind of God. There are people that can pray out of guilt, but our prayers are not
prayed out of guilt. They are prayed by faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ. Worship must
come from apostolic doctrine and our fellowship must come from apostolic doctrine, and our
prayers are coming from apostolic doctrine.

Through the years, we have found when we hear the Bible being taught and the Spirit of God is teaching us and we all have the same mind and we are recognizing the greatness of God, our teaching results in worship. Highest form of worship is listening with a spirit of contrition, humility and brokenness to the truth. Is. 66 they
that tremble at my Word, have high regard for it. We’ll teach that a little later this morning. The
first part is important and profound that worship is what we do now. John. 4:22 Jesus said to her,
you worship but you don’t know what.

Man is made to worship. He worships idols and preferences and cultural ideas and temperament and personality and himself. God said you are to have no other gods before me therefore we are hungry to know him and seek him and we become true worshipers in spirit and in truth. It says the Father seeks such to worship him.
Wow! I can’t imagine. Can you imagine God is saying out of love I want someone to know me. I
want someone to know me. If they know me, they will enjoy it so much and I will enjoy them so
much. I will enjoy my people. Zephaniah 3:17, he encamps around us in Psalm 125:2.

He loves us and never sees us in any other way but what his Son did on our behalf on the cross, taking our life
from death to life, from sin to holiness, from darkness to light. Therefore now we are a holy
people, called out to worship him. Our worship has substance. How can two walk together
except they be agreed, Amos 3:3. Putting high regard, the quality and nature of God occurring
to me in my mind, in my heart and then the automatic response of the creature is worshiping
the Creator. High regard.

This is our problem. We cannot see God. We don’t know. We don’t have high regard. We may bring God to being like a man or a person or dog or fish or mountain, the sun, the moon but he transcends everything created. In heaven we read in book of Revelation when we are there before we don’t stop. It’s in our nature as worshipers and the angels as well. Now we are on the earth and have a mortal body and fallen sin nature and with our sin nature, we have two very strong things we live in as people. We live in reason and
feelings. Reason and feelings. 1 Timothy 2:8, without wrath, another word very common to people.
They are angry. Anger inside. Anger in their mouth.

Quiet anger. Boiling, simmering. Angry about life, themselves, God. And the other is without doubting. Unbelief. When you were born again and Spirit of God came into you and the new nature of Christ was given to you, now you
became a worshiper. You were not a worshiper before. Yes you had moments by the beach
or full moon or a palm tree with a full moon behind it or a birth of a baby. You saw the baby
and couldn’t believe the miracle of it and you worshiped. It’s true. Man is made to worship.
And men believe in God. They do.

But as a way of life it has to be given to us by the new birth and by apostolic doctrine. You see the Jews believed they came out of Egypt by the high and mighty hand of God. They walked through the Red Sea and there was a wall of water on this side and that side and it couldn’t be denied that God delivered them. It was not Moses alone. It
was God that delivered them. They saw that and worshiped for three days. Then they realize
they don’t have water. They don’t have food. They are without a country. Realize they are a
large number in the desert. Now they need a tabernacle where they could learn to worship.
That was not their idea. That was God.

Moses, build a tabernacle. They will come to me through blood. I am a holy God. They must come this way. They cannot just come on their own reason and feelings. They must come by faith in what I say, in what I am doing. That tabernacle was built and used. The people didn’t understand what it was and the value of it. They didn’t know
what the ark of the covenant really meant. A single man, a high priest went once a year into the
holy of holies, that special room where nobody could be expecting that one man once a year
with blood. We know in our Bible in Hebrews 10 that Christ has brought us into very heaven itself.
He is there presenting us before his Father (Hebrews 9:24).

We now come boldly into the presence of God (Heb. 4:16). We don’t pay for any of our wrongdoing. We don’t worry about who we are. We have been justified by the blood. We are indwelt by the Spirit and called into the
presence of God as worshipers. How would I ever learn this, but I need the teaching. The
teaching? Yes. Because there are many teachings. 2 Peter v 2:1, 2 Corinthians 11:3. That you would be
deceived and misled by false apostles. Wrong teaching? Yes, the world is filled with it. Many
different spirits (1 John 4:1).

In the latter day the Spirit speaks expressly that some will give place
to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. What is the devil teaching? I think these two things
would be right along his – reason and feelings. We are in an age of feeling. How you feel. What
has happened to you. How sorry we are for each other. How much we pity our problems and
ourselves and feed on I’ve been hurt or I’m troubled or I’m depressed or worried or anxious.
We understand that. We are pastors and we talk to people all the time. We read and look and
study and understand our Bible.

The three Hebrew boys in Daniel 3 said Oh King Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer you in this matter. Our God is able to deliver us but if he does not, we will not worship the image. Why are they talking this way? Our God is able to deliver us but if he doesn’t, we’re not falling into a depression about it. We’re not
worried about it. We’ll be consumed in the fire if that’s the way it is. We are believing in God.
We are worshipers of God. God is God. God help me see who you are constantly, all the time.
Help me be a worshiper of you. Many times we are in trouble in life by – and we have these loose ends and faults and troubles in our personalities and relationships with people.

Are you a worshiper? Have you found what it is to be a worshiper? Are you in the holy of holies? The
Bible is saying we are seated in heavenly places. We are people that have high regard for the
almighty God who has changed our lives and changed us and put us from here to there all by
his grace. You know the church – go to Acts 2 and we’ll see this. Pray for me that I would
through these weeks hit the right points for our church. All these messages are important in
putting together what the Lord wants us to hear.

This is one of them, worship. We started the series, min-series we could call it on Wednesday night, and we talked about public worship gives us – I was glad when they said unto me let us go up to the house of the Lord. Why would I be glad? It’s the frame for my life. It’s God. I don’t feel like it. But we live by faith, not by
feelings. I was also wanted to bring in the message the story about Abraham and Lot. Their
herdsmen were fighting. There was strife. Abraham said to Lot, where do you want to go? You
want to go in that direction. I’ll go in that one. I’ll let you decide. It means to me that Abraham
was a greater man than Lot.

He’s saying I got God. If you do this, that’s fine. I’ll do this but God is with me. If you do that, I’ll do this and that’s fine. God is with me. I can see God. Abraham saw Jesus’ day in John. 8:58. Moses saw something too in Hebrews 11:27. Moses endured by seeing him who is invisible. Have you seen God? Have you seen God? Have you been a worshiper of God? Has the Holy Spirit anointed you in such a way that you’ve seen God? Have you been
refreshed by the presence of God? Have you seen God in life? Kind of lost sight of yourself, your
smartness. The world is run by clever people. They’re running the world and look at the
condition of it. They are the clever people, the strong people, the determined people.

I’m waiting to see what God has done in history by the worshipers of God. I see it in Jesus. Jesus
set his Father before his face all the time, Psalm 16:8 and John 5:19. What is the church? What has
the church done? The church has done great things. Acts 2:41 3,000 souls. Vs. 42 they
continued steadfastly. I mean not once a week. They continued steadfastly. I don’t mean for ten
years. I mean steadfastly. Not every once in a while. They continued steadfastly in apostolic
teaching. Acts 2:42 in the apostolic doctrine. That doctrine is the ground, the frame. The
doctrine is the place where we live so we can always approach God and come into the holy of

What right do you have to be here? Apostolic doctrine has taught me that I’m seated in
the heavenlies. I come boldly into the presence of Almighty God with my hands up without
wrath and doubt. The angels are saying well done believer on the earth. How did you get here?
I’m living in faith in God who loves us. Gave us his Son. Did not spare him but made a way for
us. It says a new and living way. You know the road runner in the cartoon. Maybe you know it. I
don’t know what era it was. The roadrunner and the coyote. Coyotes never stop by the way. I
asked Gary Groenewald, what is it about coyotes.

He goes once they are tracking; a coyote will not stop. It will keep going. It will track for ten miles, twenty miles. It will not stop. Isn’t that cool. What is the roadrunner? The bird that the coyote wants to catch. What’s the point of the
story? The road moves, it goes up off the ground. When a believer is a worshiper, the road
moves. I’m not kidding you. It’s called a new and living way. I’m on the escalator in the airport,
the horizontal one, the moving sidewalk. The road moves. I don’t know why but the road is
moving in my life because we’re worshipers of God. We have a Convention that is special.

We have miracles that happen. We have young men and young women that are on fire. Their Bibles
are open. We have the Spirit of God moving. The devil stays away. He tries to come but there is
no place because apostolic doctrine has the authority to deal with the lies of the devil. The
better I know the Bible, the better is my life of faith because faith is coming by the Bible, the
Word is building us up in our faith and not in our feelings and reason. Reason says you will
never survive King Nebuchadnezzar. You will be thrown into the fire.

Oh King, we are not careful to answer you. Our God can deliver us. If he doesn’t, we die. But if he does, but if he
does and he can. They throw them in and there is not three but four in the furnace. One like
unto the Son of God. Worship is a new thing for us. Worship is something we bring with us in
the car when we go on the Beltway. Worship is something we have in our prayer meeting.
Worship is something we have in our service. Worship is something we have when we have our
troubles and problems. We are worshipers of God. The Father seeks such to worship him in
spirit and truth. Truth. Okay. Truth. Judgments.

Psalm 119 I love thy judgments. Also I hate vain thoughts. Let God search your heart and build you up in quietness. Build you up in the Spirit. Let God search your heart and agree with God a lot. Agree with Him when he corrects you. When he speaks to your heart and shows you something. Agree with God. Agree with Him. The Spirit
of God will freshen you and fill you. Vs. 42. I don’t have much to say to you. Do you have much
to say to me about life? Oh, the donuts are great. By the way, we are going to have a donut
Sunday here out in the hallway.

Free donuts. Oh yeah! This church knows what it’s doing! Okay. Wait a minute. Hold it! I forgot where I was! I don’t have much to say to you. You could be with me for 24 hours and I’d be dull and boring. I could act smart. I could talk about something I heard in the news but it’s all boring. It’s all dead. But when you have apostolic doctrine, then
you have content for fellowship. When you have fellowship, you are built up. My, that’s a great
spirit in that church. That’s great fellowship in that church. Those people have something to
say. I receive something. I become a better person. I feel closer to God. I want to live by faith.
I’m hungry for the spiritual life.

This is what happened to 3,000 people. vs. 42. Like we said in
the beginning, I don’t believe you can reverse the order. You can have 3,000 people praying
together but you have no idea what the basis of their prayer is. You can have 3,000 people
taking communion, but do they know what they are doing? That happened to me as a Catholic.
I was brought up as a Catholic. I would take the communion and I would learn a little bit. I
understood it was his body and blood as they taught it. But I don’t really know what that is
meaning to me.

On a Monday morning, I wake up and how can I live a Christian life? Being born
again and being taught and receiving apostolic doctrine means communion becomes a special
memory of what it means that we were lost without him. God gave his Son so his body would
be broken, and his blood would be shed. We would be redeemed. We would be Spirit filled and
we would have fellowship. Then it means that we would have prayer, but the prayer would be
rooted on the finished work. We are coming into the holy of holies by a new and living way
because Jesus Christ made the way for us.

Now our prayers are fervent, precious, powerful, meaningful, life changing. They affect people. Worship. Vs. 43. You know fear doesn’t come on you when people are playing games. Fear doesn’t come on you when something is stupid, when something is obviously foolish. Fear doesn’t come on you when you hear a lie in the news, or someone is fooling around, and you get to see through the thing. This is a thing you can’t see
through. This is real. This is something they cannot – what are you people doing? Stop it. Stop
it. They cannot. The new birth, apostolic doctrine, edification, and the church is growing. Vs. 43-
46. Now, they were not in the temple proper, they were in what is called Solomon’s porch, a
portico outside of the temple.

The original blueprint is Moses’ blueprint of course. Solomon took that blueprint and built his temple. That was destroyed. Herod built a temple and added certain features. There was a porch there for the rabbis to assemble and teach. This is where Jesus was teaching. But now the early church is there teaching. They should be running away.
They should stay away from there and not be out in public. Hide. Protect yourself. Get away
from Jerusalem. But instead, they go to the very heart of it. So we have daily with one accord in
the temple, vs. 46. I wonder, what has happened to the church today. I think if I want to get a
lot of people I think I can address their feelings. We get the whole thing going. We get the
celebrity on the stage. Have the charisma.

Get the songs fired up. Get everyone feeling good. Serve them your best. Be kind of funny. Be light. Be serious but also light and worship. I love any kind of worship. I’m not critical of any kind of singing by sincere and pure people. I agree with it. I don’t have a problem with it that way, but I do this way. When the trials come, my
feelings change. I need doctrine in my soul. When my troubles come, my girlfriend leaves me or
I have a problem at my work or lose my money, my Christianity goes out the window because
the worship was not based on faith. It was based on feeling. Its based on how I feel. To be
honest, I’ve been there.

I’ve been down a bit and I have to go to the meeting where everybody
is happy. I go to the meeting and they go “Praise the Lord, brother” and big smile and
everything. I do the best I can, but my heart is not in it. I’m tired. I can’t praise the Lord like you
are right now. You are on a mountain top and I’m in a valley. Could someone minister to me.
Yes, come on! Come on! You know what I mean. I found myself sitting in this church and sitting
here and not knowing exactly how the whole ministry would happen, but I found myself quietly
ministered to in my down times. I found myself listening to what the Spirit was saying from the
Bible. It built me up.

Now more than 40 years later many of us could say it is beautiful. The
worship is in spirit and truth not reason and feelings. Reason and feelings. The three Hebrew
boys should not say that. They should not say that. Feelings and you should not care about
them. Not let them run your life. Don’t make decisions based on feeling. Don’t live you life
based on how you feel. Live your life bases on that which is higher. That’s God. I’m sure in
Gethsemane Jesus didn’t feel too good hanging on a cross. He was there in the perfect will of
God. How does it happen? Well, by the teaching, by the Spirit teaching us.

I have a short list here to finish up. 1) Worship is you delighting in God. You start to realize who he is and get
really serious about it in your heart. You realize who he is and enjoy him. You respect him. You
believe him. 2) God delights in you. That’s in Is. 62:5. He loves you. He delights in you. 3) We
draw near to him in Heb 10:22. We come close to him by faith. 4) He draws near to us. He
shows up, 2 Chronicles 5:13-14. He shows up. I didn’t know it would work like that. I honor him in
faith and one day my bedroom is filled with God’s presence. My footsteps seem to be blessed
of God, washed with butter, Job 29. It seems things I say, and think have meaning. My
friendships. There is something beautiful about the Holy Spirit between us.

I get to see David kill Goliath. I don’t know why but I got to see David kill Goliath. I’m honored of God. I’m blessed
of God. God is drawing near to me. He’s drawing near to me in my heart. 5) God ministers to us
as a Body, 1 Corinthians 14:26. Have you felt it? Have you seen it? God ministers to us when we
worship. One of my favorite parts of the service is at the beginning when we sing. I love these
singers and the life and the ministry. I could do it like prayer the other night. I had an
appointment and I couldn’t make it. I missed it. I think about it this week. I missed it. But I enjoy
it very much when Mark M. and Matt Roberge and they sing and Sturge.

We get to sing those words and the Lord is ministering to us in the Body. 6) When we worship, the enemies flee. 2
Chronicles 20;21-22. Let God arise and his enemies be scattered. What enemies? Of course
demons, but even the enemy of reason. It can be an enemy. I mean life is reasonable we know
that, but it has to be more than reason. It has to be more than just me and my life in the natural
way. God has to be invited into my life of unbelief. I want to put God in high priority in regards
to my everyday life. Can God feed a multitude? No, he cannot. Yes, he can. Can he walk on
water? No, he cannot. Yes, he can.

Can he raise the dead? No, he cannot. Yes, he can. Can God do a miracle? Yes, he can. It’s that simple. But how will I be taught faith without the richness of the Bible speaking to our spirit and saying do not limit the Holy One of Israel. Some of us in our families bring faith into our families. Some of us in our relationships bring faith into our
relationships. In our church, bring faith into our church. In our Bible reading, bring faith. I was
reading about Nazi Germany and the pastors there that were not resisting Hitter. This is where
Dietrich Bonhoeffer – this is interesting. Dietrich Bonhoeffer left Germany, I don’t know 1936 or
something. He was a professor of theology.

He came to America. He went to the black churches in America. And it affected him deeply. He saw these people in their humility, in their worship, in their love live beyond reason, live by faith and it changed him. And when he went back to Germany – he didn’t have to go. His family was in trouble with Hitler. He had to go. This is how
the Spirit led him. He had to go. He could have stayed in London. He could have stayed in many
places. He could have been a teacher of theology in many schools, but he had to go back to
Germany. This was his conviction. He had to go back. He taught the pastors. He had a small
school and everywhere he went, he was teaching the pastors.

We must live by faith. We cannot live in reason. With reason you can cut the Bible into ribbons. But when you have the Spirit of God and are humble before God, the Bible isn’t subject to my reason. The Bible is over me in
worship. Jesus is speaking and we are believing Jesus. He led with Mueller this opposition
against Hitler. Hitler arrested Bonhoeffer eight days before the Americans came to that part of
Berlin to liberate it. The gestapo hanged Bonhoeffer. What a story. How did he get in trouble?
His life of faith. Why did he go back to Germany? His life of faith. What was his message? To live
by faith.

To become a worshiper. The churches are dead. The same thing happens in our
country when people fall away from faith, they leave the church. Why do they leave the
church? I don’t feel like it. I go to the church and don’t feel anything. It doesn’t give me
anything. We fail to give the message and then we must give the message and continue
steadfastly in the teaching and the effect of the Spirit that happens in the ministry. That’s what
happened to us. We don’t back up or back off or stop it or quit. We don’t give up. We’re not
compromising. We are as fervent in whatever God can lead us in.

We pray for each other and love each other and live in this life of faith and worship of God. The result is very good. Very good. Okay. Amen. My seventh point relates to what I just said about Bonhoeffer. 1 Corinthians 14:23 unbelievers will come into the meetings, and they are in our meetings and will say what is going on? They will bow down and worship. They will believe that God is just because they are in our presence hearing the things that they hear. That’s an amazing thing.


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.