1/13 Fundamental Thoughts-Sermons

“Our Honour and Authority”

Romans 13:1-7  Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.  (2)  Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.  (3)  For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:  (4)  For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.  (5)  Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.  (6)  For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.  (7)  Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.

INTRODUCTION:  The foremost thought in these verses is our relationship to the church and state, (State being any Government above Family and the Church.)  This is not intended as a political message, yet it is a message defining our position on earth as temporary residents, awaiting our call home.
              We all know that the Supreme leader is God in Heaven.  Our focus in this message is our relationship to the state.
              We as Christians ought to know what God expects from Him.  We as temporal citizens of this world are abiding and consequently we are to first look like, live like we know Him in a world who does not know Him.  As we abide we are not do disobey the laws the world, unless they conflict with the Family or the Church.  We must consider worldly laws as if they are Laws of God.

I.            GOVERNMENT IS ORDAINED BY GOD                       (vv 1-2)
              A.           The Believer
                             1.           Is not to resist the government by
                                           i.            Being identified with
                                                          a.           Civil disobedience
                                                          b.           Rebellion, Murder
                                                          c.            Terrorism
                             2.           When civil law affects
                                           i.            The Family
                                           ii.           The Church
a.               We are obey God

B.              The Believer Who Resists Government
1.               Will be condemned by God
i.           Damnation = Judgment

Ezra 7:26  And whosoever will not do the law of thy God, and the law of the king, let judgment be executed speedily upon him, whether it be unto death, or to banishment, or to confiscation of goods, or to imprisonment.

                             2.           That judgment will be in our reward

Romans 14:12  So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.

              AND RESTRAIN EVIL                                                        (vv 3-5)
A.              Rulers Are Ordained To:

Matthew 22:21  They say unto him, Caesar's. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's.
1.               Restrain evil
2.               Promote good
              i.            If we break the law
                             a.           The state punishes us
3.           As a believer we should
1 Peter 2:13  Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;

i.                Obey the laws of the land
ii.               Do what is good and lawful

B.              Our Rulers Are Ministers Of God
1.               Ordained by God for good
i.           For our protection
           a.           Not the Mexican border
ii.        For our good

Psalms 2:10-11  Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth.  (11)  Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.

2.               We must fear breaking civil laws
i.           It exists
a.               To maintain order

C.              Obey For Our Consciences Sake
1.               Because of the fear of punishment
2.               Knowing your conscience is clear

              BENEFITS FROM TAXATION    (Tribute)                      (vv 6-7)
              A.           Rulers Provide Benefits of
                             1.           Justice
                                           i.            Protection
                                                          a.           What about Arizona
                                           ii.           Services to citizens
3.               Keeping order
              i.            Restraining chaos

B.              The Believer Must Pay Taxes
1.               Every citizen is obligated

Matthew 22:21  They say unto him, Caesar's. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's.

              C.           We Must Fulfill Our Commitment
                             1.           We as believers must live to
                                           i.            Honour God
                                           ii.           Honor our country
iii.             Honor state, county, city
CONCLUSION:               We as Christians may complain, we may work peaceably to make changes to our government, however, regardless of the outcome we must obey the ruler.

God created three institutions:
1.               The Family
2.               The Church
3.               The Government

All exist because it is God’s Will.  He wanted you and I to have a civil relationship with one anther.  A civil relationship between man and man. 

1/13 Fundamental Thoughts-Sermons

“…Enlarge My Coast…” 

1 Chronicles 4:9-10  And Jabez was more honourable than his brethren: and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, Because I bare him with sorrow.  (10)  And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested.

INTRODUCTION:           Jabez, at least to our knowledge, was a praying man.  I chose this scripture because of his prayer.  Prayer, as Bro Eddie Kelso so aptly described, is such and important part of what we are supposed to be about.
              God gave us the Holy Spirit to allow us a path of communication with Him.  Yet, it is believed for most Christians, it is an unused, abused blessing.
              This Nation was founded on prayer.  Those who came across on the Mayflower in 1620.  They signed an article called the Mayflower Compact, which reads in part:

“In the name of God, Amen. We, whose names are underwritten, the Loyal Subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord, King James, by the Grace of God, of England, France and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, e&. Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and Advancement of the Christian Faith, and the Honour of our King and Country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the northern parts of Virginia; do by these presents, solemnly and mutually in the Presence of God and one of another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil Body Politick,….”

Our First Continental Congress opened with Prayer; they prayed:

September 7th, 1774           Carpenters Hall, Philadelphia

O Lord, our Heavenly Father, High and mighty King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, who dost from Thy throne behold all the dwellers on earth and reignest with power supreme and uncontrolled over all the Kingdoms, Empires and Governments:

Look down in mercy we beseech Thee, on these American States, who have fled to Thee from the rod of oppression, and thrown themselves on Thy gracious protection, desiring henceforth to be dependent only on Thee, they have appealed for the righteousness of their cause; to Thee do they now look up for that countenance and support which Thou alone canst give; take them, therefore, Heavenly Father, under Thy nurturing care; give them wisdom in Council and valor in the field; defeat the malicious designs of our cruel adversaries; convince them of the unrighteousness of their cause; and if they persist in their sanguinary purpose, O, Let the voice of Thy own enerring justice, sounding in their hearts, constrain them to drop the weapons of war from their unnerved hands in the day of battle! 

Be Thou present, O God of wisdom and direct the councils of this honorable assembly; enable them to settle things on the best and surest foundation. That the scene of blood may be speedily closed; the order, harmony and peace may be effectively restored, and truth and justice, religion and piety prevail and florish among Thy people. Preserve the health of their bodies and vigor of their minds; shower down on them, and the millions they here represent, such temporal blessings as Thou seeth expedient for them in this world, and crown them with everlasting glory in the world to come. All this we ask in the name and through the merits of JESUS CHRIST, THY SON, OUR SAVIOR. AMEN  - Rev. Jacob Duché

              But what should we pray?

              A.           Consider the Chronicles Genealogies.
1.           It is sad to think that multitudes are listed and all that is said about them is that they lived, begat sons and daughters, and then died.
 2.          Jabez' name means "Son of sorrow"

              B.           What About Us?
1.           Ten years after our death, will it have mattered that we lived?
                            2.           It doesn't have to be that way!

C.           Jabez' Name Stood Out From Among Those of Insignificance.
1.           He was not a great prophet or preacher.
              i.            As far as we know
2.           He was remembered because of his prayer!
3.           He was "more honourable than his brethren".

              A.           He Prayed For Spiritual Prosperity.
1.           "Oh that thou would wouldest bless me indeed"
                                           i.            Solomon’s prayer

(2 Chronicles 1:10)  Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people: for who can judge this thy people, that is so great?

(1 Kings 4:29)  And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding exceeding much, and largeness of heart, even as the sand that is on the sea shore.

2.      He was not satisfied with the status quo...
i.                He wanted God's blessings
ii.               He knew what was most important

3.           He wanted the fullest blessings from God.
              i.            Though they may come,
ii.               It is about seeking God's Will

              B.           He Prayed For Widened Horizons.
                             1.           Enlarge my coast
a.           Hannah needed her horizons widened

(1 Samuel 1:19-20)  And they rose up in the morning early, and worshipped before the LORD, and returned, and came to their house to Ramah: and Elkanah knew Hannah his wife; and the LORD remembered her.  (20)  Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.

2.           She didn't want to stay in the “comfort zone”
3.           The word “enlarge” means simply to make larger,
              i.            Extend in limits or dimensions, to extend; more purposes.
4.           The word “coast” here is used to refer to boundaries and borders.

C.           He Prayed That The Hand Of God Would Be With Him.
1.               Indicating power,
i.                Means, (Wealth / Prosperity)
ii.               Direction in life.
2.           Jabez prayed that God's open hand of direction and power would be with Him.
3.           What a comfort to know that God is there with an open hand
i.                To take ours and
ii.               Lift us up when we are down,
iii.             Encourage us when we are weak.

              D.           He Prayed For Deliverance From Sin.
1.           Jabez was aware of the power of evil and the fact that God could deliver him.
2.           Perhaps he had witnessed others who were grieved over the result of sin in their lives.
3.           Whatever the reason, Jabez prayed and sought God's help in this matter as well.

              E.           God Answered His Prayers.

(1 Chronicles 4:10b) ..And God granted him that which he requested.

CONCLUSION:   We have seen where Jabez just wanted to be in God’s Will.  I believe that is where every individual in this room and many outside this room want to be, to be in God’s Will.  That is where I want to be, and I don’t want to be anywhere else.

Deuteronomy 6:5  And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

              Yet, individually, are we satisfied with our “comfort zone”? There is safety in staying within the boundaries that we know.  That is why it is called a “comfort zone”...it's comfortable!
              Yet it is always changing.  We accept more and more trash of the world.  Like an ostrich we just bury our head in the sand. 
              Our Nation was founded on prayer and God’s Word.  We sing “God Bless America” yet we will not drop to our knees, and ask Him to forgive our Nation.  We will not seek Him.

2 Chronicles 7:14  If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
              Have we repented of our sins, have we humbled ourselves, have we sought after God, do you know Christian, in order to get order, we must do as this verse teaches.  If we truly want God to bless America, we must get ourselves right with God.
              We must get our Executive, our Congress and our Judicial system right with God. We vote in to these Governments men and women who are willing to kill babies in the name of Choice.  We let the 10 Commandments reside in a locked room in a courthouse basement.
              Are we growing complacent? May we each receive the challenge from this brief testimony concerning Jabez.
              Our nation under the current leadership is in deep financial trouble.  In order to change what God may have set in motion, we as a nation must Pray that God would forgive our nation and change the wicked evil hearts of our Government leadership and get us back on track for Him. 
              Only then will God truly bless us with great spiritual prosperity, that He would widen our horizons, that His hand would be upon us, and that He would keep us from evil.
              May we receive the challenge to ask God for more Not that we might be lifted up in pride, That God might be glorified!
               With more ministries, more workers, more fruit, more work to do!   We have a great opportunity to make a difference for the cause of Christ.
              Yes, we have had some great blessings from God and we have seen some wonderful results.
              But God help us not to become comfortable and lose sight of what can be done if we will simply ask God.  

"...God granted him that which he requested"

He will do the same for us!  

Wedlock Or Deadlock? The Incredible Marriage

A strange situation exists in society today. We have more readily available information about sex and marriage than ever before; yet we have more marital problems and divorces. Obviously something is wrong. It is not sufficient to say that God is needed in these homes, because even many Christian marriages are falling apart.

The fact that a man and a woman are both saved is no guarantee that their marriage will succeed. Marriage is something that we have to work at; success is not automatic. And when one marriage partner is not a Christian, that can make matters even more difficult. Peter addressed this section of his letter to Christian wives who had unsaved husbands, telling them how to win their mates to Christ. Then he added some important admonitions for Christian husbands.

No matter what your marital status may be, you can learn from Peter the essentials for a happy and successful marriage.

1. The Example of Christ (1 Peter 3:1a, 7a)

2. Submission (1 Peter 3:1-6)

-a. Submission is an obligation (v. 1a).
-b. Submission is an opportunity (vv. 1b-2).
-c. Submission is an ornament (vv. 3-6).

3. Consideration (1 Peter 3:7)

-a. Physical—“dwell with them.”
-b. Intellectual—“according to knowledge.”
-c. Emotional—“giving honor unto the wife.”
-d. Spiritual—“that your prayers be not hindered.”

It might be good if husbands and wives occasionally took inventory of their marriages. Here are some questions, based on what Peter wrote.

1. Are we partners or competitors?

2. Are we helping each other become more spiritual?

3. Are we depending on the externals or the eternals? The artificial or the real?

4. Do we understand each other better?

5. Are we sensitive to each other’s feelings and ideas, or taking each other for granted?

6. Are we seeing God answer our prayers?

7. Are we enriched because of our marriage, or robbing each other of God’s blessing?

Honest answers to these questions might make a difference!