Sr. Pastor Darrell G Vaughn
Faithfulness – A Key Step to Happiness
Feb 17 2013; “Lifted Up!” Pt5
Sun AM Worship Can’t walk with God while Holding hands with the Devil.
Text John: 12:31-50 (King James Version)
“Father, I am your servant, willing and desiring to be used to bless your people.”
The Fields are
white and the laborers are few!
C.H. Spurgeon said, “If God does not save a man by truth he certainly will not save them by lies, and if
the old gospel is not competent to work a revival, then we will do without the revival;”
If we don’t see things from a Spiritual perspective then it’s like living in a house with fantastic views, but choosing to live in a room with no windows!
Joh 12:32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.
Joh 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
Joh 3:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Joh 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.
How do we lift him up?
1: with our Praise and Worship.
2: With our Testimony
3: With our Obedience
4: with our Humility
“In 2012- The American Bible Society conducted a study and found that although 85% of American households own at least one Bible, 36% of Americans read from the Bible less than once a year. Of those polled, 79% saw themselves as “knowledgeable about the Bible.” Even so, 54% could not identify the first five books of the Bible.”
“In 2010- The Pew Survey
found that those who score highest on religious knowledge tests are not at all
mainline or evangelical Christians, but atheists and agnostics.”
“In 2007, Stephen Prothero (a Boston University professor) wrote that
“Americans are both
deeply religious and profoundly ignorant about religion,”
“In 2005- Newsweek Magazine noted that whereas 45% respondents to the survey say they read once a week or more, only 2% associate reading the Bible with their closest connection to God, falling behind personal prayer, nature, a house of worship, and praying with others.”
“Yet many Christians, insist that the Bible comprises “the very words of God.”
“In 2005- George Barna of the Barna Group, as a result of extensive review of the top trends in 2005, made the following comment: “American Christians are biblically illiterate. Although most of them contend that the Bible contains truth and is worth knowing, and most of them argue that they know all of the relevant truths and principles, our research shows otherwise. And the trend line is frightening: the younger a person is, the less they understand about the Christian faith.”
Psalm 1:1-6 (2) (Written in 432 BC – While Nehemiah is cleaning out the temple. –Nehemiah 13:7-9).
The Hebrew word translated “Law” in verse 2 is the word “Torah”.
An interesting note is that if you take the Torah (the first 5 books of the Bible, also called the Books of Moses in Nehemiah 13) in the Hebrew you can see something really cool.
The word Law/Torah in Hebrew is spelled Tet, Vav, Resh, Hey.
The number 7 is consider to be God’s number.
If you take Genesis (Bereshit in Hebrew) chapter 1 in the Hebrew and start counting after you find the first leter Tet 49 (7x7) letters the 50th letter will be a Vav, then do it again for 49 and the next letter will be a Resh and then one more time and you will hit a Hey; spelling Torah.
This can be repeated again in Exodus chapter 1, however not at the first occurrence of a Tet.
Then in Leviticus this does not work. You won’t find it here.
However, If you start with the letter Yod and count 7 then you will run into a Hey. Do it again and you will hit a Vav and one more time and you will get the letter Hey.
In Hebrew Yod Hey Vav Hey spells Yahway (God).
Then back to the 49 spacing in Numbers and Exodus.
However, in these two books Torah is spelled backwards (Hey, Resh Vav, Tet).
So what you end up with is:
Genesis Exodus Levitates Numbers Deuteronomy
Torah Torah Yahway haroT haroT
The Torah always points toward God!
Very cool. Nothing to build doctrine on, but interesting none the less.
(Read 2 Chronicles 7:10-15 & Pray)
2Ch 7:10 And on the three and twentieth day of the seventh month he sent the people away into their tents, glad and merry in heart for the goodness that the LORD had shewed unto David, and to Solomon, and to Israel his people.
2Ch 7:11 Thus Solomon finished the house of the LORD, and the king's house: and all that came into Solomon's heart to make in the house of the LORD, and in his own house, he prosperously effected.
2Ch 7:12 And the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said unto him, I have heard thy prayer, and have chosen this place to myself for an house of sacrifice.
2Ch 7:13 If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people;
2Ch 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.
2Ch 7:15 Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place.
2Ch 7:16 For now have I chosen and sanctified this house, that my name may be there for ever: and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually.
Let’s pray. Father, Open my eyes so I can see Your truth.
Open my ears so I can hear
Your voice. Open my mind so I can understand Your Word.
And open my heart so I may receive all that You want me to receive. AMEN
These are physical judgments brought upon the people due to their spiritual condition.
God knows how to keep us Humble:
A visiting evangelist felt pretty good about the message he had just preached as he greeted people after the opening service of a revival. The people seemed very gracious and appreciative of the sermon they had just heard.
· But then one lady abruptly stated, "Too long!" as she filed past the minister.
· She then cycled back through the line and shouted, "Too loud!" The two negative comments unnerved him a bit, but he tried to maintain his composure.
· When she came through a third time her comments were no more flattering. She declared, "And it was also boring!"
At this point the chairman of the deacons intervened and assured the evangelist that this woman’s remarks should not be taken seriously. He whispered,
"Don’t pay any attention to her. She’s a little senile and doesn’t really know what she’s saying. She just goes around repeating what she hears other people say."
B. God Resists The Proud
James 4:6-10 - 6But He gives more grace. Therefore He says:“God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.”
7Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
8Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
9Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.
10Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.
We are never ever going to experience heaven sent revival until we get our own hearts humbled before our great God, Lift him up with 1: Praise and Worship 2: Testimonials 3: Obedience 4:Humility. And TURN from the error of our ways.
Charles G. Finney defined
“Nothing else than a new beginning of obedience to God. Just as in the case of a converted sinner, the first step is a deep repentance, a breaking down of heart, a getting down into the dust before God, with deep humility, and a forsaking of sin.”
Evangelist Gypsy Smith was once asked how to start a revival.
He answered: “Go home, lock yourself in your room, kneel down in the middle of your floor. Draw a chalk mark all around yourself and ask God to start the revival inside that chalk mark. When He has answered your prayer, the revival will be on.”
Revival must begin with me… it must begin with you!
God goes on to instruct
Solomon as to what should be done if there is a drought, or pestilence or even
a swarm of locusts to devour the crops:
“My people who are called by My name…”
(God’s people - Israel in the passage – the Church in application today)
1. Humble Themselves
3. Seek My Face
4. Turn From Their Wicked Ways (Implies judgment would be the reason for these things to happen).
· Hear from Heaven
· Forgive Their Sin
· Heal Their Land
The physical will not be taken care of until the spiritual needs are first addressed!
4. Pride Makes Us Blind To Our Own True Spiritual Condition!
The Church at Laodicea – Revelation 3:14-17
14“And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God:
15“I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot.
16So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.
17Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked—
18I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see.
19As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent.
Because we have so much in this country, we often live as if we don’t need God!
It may take another economic collapse before this nation turns back to God!
Pride Hinders Revival Because The Spirit Must Work “On Us”, Rather Than Work “Through Us.”
Now that we have dealt somewhat with PRIDE lets look at some benefits of humility
“Humility is to make a right estimate of one’s self.” – CharlesHaddon Spurgeon
How Other Men Of God Have Defined Humility:
“Humility is recognizing that God and others are responsible for the achievements in my life.” Bill Gothard
“I used to think that God’s gifts were on shelves one above the other and that the taller we grew in Christian character the more easily we could reach them. I now find that God’s gifts are on shelves one beneath the other and that it is not a question of growing taller but of stooping lower.” F. B. Meyer (1847-1929)
“I’ve never known a person whom I thought was truly filled with the Holy Spirit who went out and bragged about it or sought to draw attention to himself.” Billy Graham
“Nothing sets a person so much out of the devil’s reach as humility.” Jonathan Edwards
The Humble has God’s Ear – Psalm 10:17,18
17LORD, You have heard the desire of the humble; You will prepare their heart;
You will cause Your ear to hear,
18To do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed, That the man of the earth may oppress no more.
*Humility is Perhaps the Key to Revival… If you do not first humble yourself before God and recognize your neediness before him, you will not:
· Seek God’s Face
· Turn From Your Wicked Ways
“Reviving the Church is like remodeling your house: it takes longer than you hoped, costs more than you planned, and makes a bigger mess than you ever thought possible… - But it’s worth it in the end!” - This is where it begins!