Palm 150

Introduction: There are five places in this psalm in which we can praise the Lord.
1. In his personal holiness.
2. In the person of his Son.
3. In heaven.
4. In the assembly of saints.
5. In the silence of the heart.
Praising God can be one of the most blessed times of a Christian. It ought be said about us that we praise more than we pout. But the reality of life is that we pout more than we praise. True praise always honors God.
D. L. Moody said this about praise. “Why should we go reeling and staggering under the burdens and cares of life when we have such prospects before us? If there is nothing but glory beyond, our faces ought to shine brightly all the time.” Charles Spurgeon said that praise is the rehearsal of our eternal song.
Just for a few minutes we are going to examine the power of a positive praise life.

First God is very pleased with our praises. God said, “Whoso offereth praise glorifieth me.” (Psalm 50:23) God always manifests Himself in response to our praise. (Psalm 22:3 “But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.”) Our praise prepares us for a life of prayer and service. Without praise we are apt to be discontent at best. One reason why we are not ready to worship is that we are praising our God.

Second A defeated Christian is one who does not praise the Lord. A church with a defeated spirit has no joyful praise unto God. Praise and defeat cannot live in the same house. The foundation of victory is a life of praise and joy.

Third Absolutely... words of praise will lift you from defeat to victory, from sickness to health, from despair to joy, from bondage to liberty. Praise is the language of faith, the language of victory, and the language of heaven.

Fourth To practice a positive praise life requires willpower and boldness, for the natural man doesn’t like to praise the Lord. It is a wonderful spiritual exercise. The farther you are from God, the less you desire to praise Him. Worldly, carnal Christians do not enjoy the power and blessing of a positive praise life. Neither do people bound by fear, timidity or reluctance.

Fifth Lack of praise and thanksgiving is a spirit of these last days. (2nd Timothy 3:2 “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,”) God commands us to be full of praise. (Colossians 3:15 “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.”) “Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.” (Psalm 100:4)

Sixth Bold, unceasing praise can usher in the fullness of the Spirit. The one hundred twenty folks that were at Pentecost “were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God.” (Luke 24:53)
Continual praise is a definite evidence of the Spirit-filled life. Ephesians 5:18-20
“And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ”

Seventh Discipline your lips to praise the Lord. You will possess tremendous power, enjoy great joy and keep Heaven “busy” working in your behalf for God honors a praising prayer life.
Hebrews 13:15
“By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.”
Praise brings glory to God, and rejoices the soul. We should daily offering the fruit of our lips, even praise to our God. Write down all the things for which you should be praising Him. Consider how great our Heavenly Father is and so spend time magnifying Him from a heart of praise.

Conclusion: Look with me at Psalm one and verse one. What is the first word we note here? It is the word “blessed.” Now look back at Psalm one hundred and fifty and verse six. What are the last words in that Psalm? It is “Hallelujah”. This is Hebrew word of “praise ye the Lord.” In fact, this is a universal word. It is basically the same in all languages. Our lives should be praise. Is yours?

Pastor Mike Walls
Freedom Baptist Church
Smithfield, NC

6/1 Fundamental Thoughts - Sermons

Real Conversion

Luke 19:1-10  And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho.  (2)  And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans, and he was rich.  (3)  And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press, because he was little of stature.  (4)  And he ran before, and climbed up into a sycomore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way.  (5)  And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house.  (6)  And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully.  (7)  And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, That he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner.  (8)  And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.  (9)  And Jesus said unto him, This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham.  (10)  For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

INTRODUCTION:           In this message we see an example of a Real Conversion of a man found in the Bible.   He displayed a convicted heart, and a willingness to right any wrong he may have committed.
              We have no idea why Jesus chose Zacchaeus; just that He knew Zacchaeus needed to be saved.  Jesus also knew Zacchaeus had a convicted heart.  Zacchaeus had likely heard Jesus was in town and he had heard all the things Jesus had done.  When Jesus called out his name, his conviction strengthened.  Likely somewhere between his position in the tree and the his position on the ground, Zacchaeus accepted Jesus as his Christ and Saviour.  He might have wondered in his mind “How did He know my name?”  As a tax man he had enough information to add 2+2 and get 4.
              I NEVER try to talk someone or try to lead someone to the Lord if there does not seem to be at least some kind of Conviction, a willingness apparent in their heart. Too many Christians are having people repeat a prayer with no discernment of whether there is truly a sorrow for their sins.  I see too many people so called get saved and NEVER have a CHANGED LIFE.   This does not fit the examples of those who got saved in the bible.

In this message I want us to observe the truths that are evident.

I.            HE WAS A DETERMINED MAN (vv 3-4)
A.           Jesus was surrounded by what the Bible calls "the press."
1.           The press our text speaks of is a mass of people surrounding Jesus so completely that one could not get through the crowd to see Jesus.
2.           However Zacchaeus had heard of Jesus.
i.                He was determined to see Jesus and
ii.               see what the man looked like who could cleanse leprosy, open blinded eyes, and restore twisted limbs.
3.           He simply just wanted to see Jesus.
4.           There is no indication that Zacchaeus had a disease that needed healing.
3.               However, he did have a fatal incurable illness that Isaiah describes in:

(Isaiah 1:4-6)  Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the LORD, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward. 5 Why should ye be stricken any more? ye will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. 6 From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrifying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment.

4.               Isaiah gives an outward illustration of an inward malady.
i.                And the tragedy of it all is that people who have the disease described by Isaiah do not even know they have it.
ii.               However even in the case of Isaiah there is grace for the nation he describes:

(Isaiah 1:18)  Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

7.           There was hope for this afflicted Jew.
i.                Even though he did not realize that he needed more from this man called Jesus that he knew.

II.           HE WAS DRAWN MAN

(John 6:44)  No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

A.           It Is Amazing What God Can Do Within A Person And That Person Thinks It Is His Own Idea.
1.           God had an appointment with Zacchaeus.
2.           He somehow knew the direction that Jesus was taking out of Jericho.
i.                So he ran around the crowd and found a Sycomore tree.
ii.               He climbed that tree like a squirrel.
iii.             Can't you just see this short fat man huffing and puffing from the run around the crowd straining out every bit of energy to get high enough in that tree to get a good view of Jesus?
3.           How little did he know that it was Christ seeking him.
i.            It was just the opposite of what he thought.
ii.               Zacchaeus had his eyes fixed on Jesus as he looked over the crowd and
a.      Saw a man the like of which he had never seen before.
iii.             He was not only a drawn man but,

A.           When was Zacchaeus saved.
1.           Some where between the limb and the ground.
2.           Now, this is the reason I say this.
i.            This verse says, "And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully."

(John 1:12)  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

                             3.           When Jesus addressed Zacchaeus
i.            He responded immediately.

              B.           He Was A Repentant Man                                          (v 8)
              1.           This is an illustration of    repentance,
2.           Repentance literally means a change of mind.
3.           This Jew is not acting like a tax collector here.
i.            He is not bent on getting as much out of people as he could to build up his personal fortune.
4.           Repentance evidences itself in a change of attitude.
i.                Zacchaeus qualifies as a man of true repentance.
ii.               Repentance is a necessary prerequisite to saving faith.
iii.             Zacchaeus demonstrates both.

IV.         HE IS AN ASSURED MAN           (vv 9-10)
A.           The Lord Himself tells you, you are saved.
1.           Many have a problem with assurance.
i.            But the Bible definitely teaches that                          you can know you are saved.

(1 John 5:13)  These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

CONCLUSION:               All of us have individual experiences that we can testify to as we give our testimony of salvation.
              Even though we are saved under various circumstances, all of us have some things in common.   All of us repented if we are saved.
              A person is not saved as a baby being dedicated to the Lord in a formal service in the Church.
              No one can trust God for you. This is an individual matter. We must see ourselves as sinners and come to God for forgiveness.

              Then we must trust what Jesus did for us on the cross as the payment for our sins.
              This is called receiving Him as a personal Saviour.
              All of us that are saved are saved by simple faith in Jesus as our Saviour.

(1 John 1:9)  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

This isn’t confessing our sins to one another, it is confessing to God.  However, without humility and conviction of the need of God in your life, any profession you make will cause you a false illusion of a grant of eternal life.

Hebrews 10:22  Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.

Zacchaeus was drawn near with a heart that was true [sincere] and he did it with faith, [full assurance,] he knew what had just happened.   He also stated what he would do if he had cheated someone.  His conscience was clear and he washed his mind clear.
              God teaches us through Paul that if we will:

Romans 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

              Part of this confessing the Lord Jesus, is 1.) to others, become known as a devoted Christian, but the second  part is 2.) Confessing to your own heart that you are a sinner and Jesus forgave you.
              Once you have done that and you believe God has raised His Son from the grave, God will save you.
              His saving is eternal life, a living in Heaven, a place where the street is paved in gold.  Where a Mansion awaits us, and it is an eternal Mansion.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Now is the time, there is no tomorrow, it is always today.