Written Sermons

 

Being Steadfast and Unmovable

1Kings 11:1 But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites;
1Ki 11:2 Of the nations concerning which the LORD said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon cleaved unto these in love.
1Ki 11:3 And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.
1Ki 11:4 For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father.
1Ki 11:5 For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites.
1Ki 11:6 And Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD, and went not fully after the LORD, as did David his father.
1Ki 11:7 Then did Solomon build a high place for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, in the hill that is before Jerusalem, and for Molech, the abomination of the children of Ammon.
1Ki 11:8 And likewise did he for all his strange wives, which burnt incense and sacrificed unto their gods.
1Ki 11:9 And the LORD was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned from the LORD God of Israel, which had appeared unto him twice,
1Ki 11:10 And had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods: but he kept not that which the LORD commanded.
1Ki 11:11 Wherefore the LORD said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and will give it to thy servant.

Here we read about a very sad story. Solomon is known as the wisest man of all ages yet in the end he seemed to be the stupidest man and all that wisdom he had gained was for nothing.

When Solomon first became king, God spoke to him in a dream recorded in 1 Kings Chapter 3. In that chapter God asked Solomon what he wished to have. Solomon asked for wisdom to rule rather than ask for material things. God not only granted him that wisdom but also gave him the riches and greatness that no one before him had. God put an ďifĒ though on this saying that if he would walk in His ways, keep His statues and commandments, he would also have length of days.

He started out good. He had Godís favor and blessing. This though is no guarantee that we are always in Godís favor. Once we find favor with God through faith in Jesus Christ, we must maintain that faith by having constant fellowship with the Lord. If we do not, we can fall away.

1Co 15:1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 1Co 15:2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.


It happened to the wisest man ever to live on earth besides Jesus Christ and that was King Solomon.

Deuteronomy 17:14 When thou art come unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, and shalt possess it, and shalt dwell therein, and shalt say, I will set a king over me, like as all the nations that are about me; Deu 17:15 Thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom the LORD thy God shall choose: one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee: thou mayest not set a stranger over thee, which is not thy brother. Deu 17:16 But he shall not multiply horses to himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt, to the end that he should multiply horses: forasmuch as the LORD hath said unto you, Ye shall henceforth return no more that way. Deu 17:17 Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away: neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold. Deu 17:18 And it shall be, when he sitteth upon the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write him a copy of this law in a book out of that which is before the priests the Levites: Deu 17:19 And it shall be with him, and he shall read therein all the days of his life: that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, to keep all the words of this law and these statutes, to do them: Deu 17:20 That his heart be not lifted up above his brethren, and that he turn not aside from the commandment, to the right hand, or to the left: to the end that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he, and his children, in the midst of Israel.


In the law it was written that a king must not multiply wives unto himself. Solomon let his wives turn his heart away from God. As a result he lost his kingdom and died without being in fellowship with the Lord.

What could Solomon have done to avoid this? We see from Deuteronomy 17:18 that he should have constantly kept the law of God before him and read it all the days of his life.

In our day, we have the written word we call the bible. It should be read and studied constantly so we will have it written upon our hearts continually. If we read and study this word, we are less likely to sin against God. Remember the Psalm which says, ďThy word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against thee.

Gathering together to worship is very important. We are commanded in the book of Hebrews not to forsake the gathering together to worship. This strengthens us and makes us more likely not to fall back into the ways of the world. When we worship we need to communicate with God in praise and song. If we limit ourselves to just watching someone else worship and not worship ourselves, we are missing our own much needed communication with God. Every time we walk through those church doors we are giving our testimony that we believe in Jesus Christ. Every time our neighbors see us leaving for church we are saying to them, Iím a believer in Jesus Christ. We are saved by faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Jesus alone is our salvation. No we are not saved by attending church but it does show by example to the kids and to those we worship with that we believe and are faithful in what we believe.

Special singing and gospel sings are great but that cannot replace singing or praising God from our own hearts. Praise and worship is greatly needed but even that can be overdone if the word itself is neglected. It is the word and the study of the word that is needed to keep the heart from returning to sin. Solomon allowed his wives to have all his attention. They eventually got him to start allowing them to worship their own gods. Later he eventually started to worship the other gods himself even though he knew better.

We see from this that who we spend our time the most with is who we will most likely be influenced by.
If we spend time with God and in the word of God, that will cause us to walk in the spirit and be closer to God. If we spend more time with our friends, our hobbies and other things than we do with God, we will be more likely to be influenced by whoever or whatever we spend our time doing.
Friendship is good but it must come second to our time spent with the Lord.

Paul the apostle once told of someone who started out good but ended up forsaken him because of his love for the world.

2Timothy 4:10 For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia,

One cannot love God and love the mammon of unrighteousness at the same time.

1John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 1Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. 1Jn 2:17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever.

The modern doctrine going about that teaches that to gain is a sign of godliness is false. The more we have in this life, the less we are going to be dependent upon God. Riches are not a sign of Godís blessing as many suppose. There are evil men who are rich and there are evil men who are poor. Not all can handle being rich for it would take their hearts far away from God.

There is a story about the rich man and Lazarus. There is also a story about the rich man who went away from Jesus without salvation because he loved his riches more than his salvation. He was willing to be religious, do all the commandments and even fast but he wasnít willing to give away his riches to the poor. We must not accumulate so many things that we could not give them up if we were required to do so.

Some of us may be richer than others and those riches may or may not separate us from God but the whether we are richer than someone else or not doesnít mean God favors us more than a poor brother.

Our time spent listening to tapes and videos about the word should never replace our own private time spent with the Lord and His word. Why? They can be repeating what someone else says and they could be repeating what they heard and they could be preaching either something new or tradition of men.

Letís be a hearer and a doer of the word ourselves depending more on God than on anyone else. It is vital that we do that.
Can we fall away from our first love and from the truth? Yes, we can.

Martin Luther did a great service to mankind when he broke away from error and led people back to the bible. So did many others before him but he is the one who got away with what the others were killed for. Yet even Luther at the end of his life wrote an article condemning the Jews and advocating the burning or their synagogues. Hitler later used Martin Lutherís ramblings to justify the holocaust.

What caused Martin to do that? He first had compassion on the Jews but when the Jews of his day rejected his message, he turned against them. He couldnít handle rejection. This caused an anger to build up in him until he wrote in anger that which later was used to justify the holocaust.
In Solomonís case it was the weakness of the flesh and the beauty of his wives that turned his heart. In Lutherís case it was not being able to handle rejection. Whatever our particular weakness is, that can be used to bring us down if we get away from following the Lord on a daily basis. We need His constant fellowship in the word, in prayer and in the fellowship of other believers.

Hebrews 3:12 Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. Heb 3:13 But exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.


Unbelief can enter in and cause us to lose our fellowship with God. Studying Godís word is the biggest guard against unbelief. That is why God instructed kings to read the law of God back in Deuteronomy.  Exhorting one another in the faith by coming together to pray and study as a body also guards against unbelief. 

So we see being unequally yoked with unbelievers as in the case of Solomon. We see allowing a root of bitterness in the case of Martin Luther, and we the love of the world in the case of Demos. 

There are scriptures in the New Testament that warns against all those things that caused those three to fail. Love of money tempted Judas to betray Jesus. We can see clearly that the devil uses different things to bring down different types of people. Boasting and then fear of men was Peterís weakness and caused him to deny Jesus although Peter later got back into fellowship with the Lord. 

What made Peter fail that one time? Remember earlier in the garden that Jesus warned Peter to watch and pray that they would not enter into temptation. The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. 

Knowing that we are weak and in need of Godís help is a good thing to have. If we know we canít make it on our own, we will constantly be seeking God for help. None of us can make it on our own. In order to get help we have to realize that we need help. To be saved from sin, we need to acknowledge that we have sinned and need to be saved. Then we have to understand the way to get rid of sin and be saved is by believing in the name of Jesus Christ to save us from sin. That opens the door. We have to see that we need God before God can help us. 

We canít be filled with the Holy Spirit if we do not think we need the Holy Spirit. We canít receive anything from God if we donít acknowledge that we need anything from God. 

I need God. I need His help. I need His salvation, I need His spirit, I need understanding. I need His presence. I need God.

Ask and it shall be given, seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened. If you being evil know how to give good gifts to your children how much more shall the heavenly father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him? We are always asking God for material things and for things in this life but if we begin to seek God for the things of the spirit rather than the things of the flesh, He will supply all other necessary things. We do not even have to worry about them. Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you. First God wants all to be saved from sin and inherit eternal life. Then God wants us to walk in the spirit and always be filled with the spirit. This is not a one time thing. Being filled with the spirit is constant.

John 7:37 In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. Joh 7:38 He that believeth on me, as the Scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

Rev 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

Joh 4:10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.


We are never to stop seeking and think we have arrived, have plenty of money and need nothing. We always need Godís presence and His spirit.
Remember Jesus warned the church at Laodicea that they thought they had all they needed but they were lacking the things of the spirit. Remember the story of the 5 virgins who were foolish because they were depending upon the spiritual power of their friends instead of seeking the Lord themselves. They were found lacking when the Lord came and no time to buy oil for their own lamps. Now is the time to seek God and get back into His fellowship and grace.

God freely gives but to receive from God we must seek Him and seek His presence. Are we too busy to seek the Lord? Are we following afar off? Are we depending upon someone else for our spiritual need and not seeking the Lord ourselves? Are we being so unequally yoked with unbelievers that they are pulling us away from God instead of us sharing the gospel with them? Yes, we need to share the gospel with unbelievers but we need to balance our time with them with time alone with God and also time spent with fellow believers. That is what church is for.
Sometimes we beat ourselves up because we do not see many souls being saved at our church services. That is something we need to seek and desire to see but church is actually a place for believers to be strengthened so they can share the gospel with those they work with, go to school with and live near. It is like a gas station. We go to the gas station when our car starts to become low on gas. What happens if we neglect to get gas? We run out and are stuck somewhere without transportation.

This is what happens when we neglect to meet and worship with other believers, seek the Lord or study His word. My main point of this message is that we need the constant fellowship of the Lord and the constant study of His word in order to keep from falling back into the sin Jesus saved us from. It is really a simple message. Just keep seeking Him. Like we need gas for our cars and food for our stomach. When we get low we seek a refill. Some of us see our gas tank drop just a little and we get more gas others wait until it gets almost empty. In the things of the spirit, we need to take even more guard against our soul so that we stay full of His spirit and are ready to fight against any temptation or trial that may upset us. Always recognize that we need God. We need each other and we need His direction constantly.

I want to end this message though on a positive note. God does not want us to fail and mess up. He is for us, not against us. Paul wrote these words:

2Timothy 1:12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. 2Ti 1:13 Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. 2Ti 1:14 That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.

Revelation 22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.

John 3:16 For God so Loved the world that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Luke 12:29 And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. Luk 12:30 For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. Luk 12:31 But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you. Luk 12:32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.


God is for us, not against us.   Amen



 
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