Wed Pm Worship
Text: Acts 27:10-18 (King James Version)
"Father, I am your servant, willing and desiring to be used to bless your people."
How many of us have looked back at our life and realized
that it is only the grace of God that we have lived this long?
Car wrecks, drugs, gang violence, drowning, and so many other circumstances have taken the lives of those we have been acquainted with,
(Some of you here, right now you know that if it wasn't for the grace of God you would have died in that car wreck, you would have been the one spending your life behind prison walls, or you would have been the one who died of a drug overdose.
We begin this message with Paul advising them not to sail.
Acts 27:10 And said unto them, Sirs, I perceive that this voyage will be with hurt and much damage, not only of the lading and ship, but also of our lives.
Acts 27:11 Nevertheless the centurion believed the master and the owner of the ship, more than those things which were spoken by Paul.
Acts 27:12 And because the haven was not commodious to winter in, the more part advised to depart thence also, if by any means they might attain to Phenice, and there to winter; which is an haven of Crete, and lieth toward the south west and north west.
Acts 27:13 And when the south wind blew softly, supposing that they had obtained their purpose, loosing thence, they sailed close by Crete.
Acts 27:14 But not long after there arose against it a tempestuous wind, called Euroclydon.
Acts 27:15 And when the ship was caught, and could not bear up into the wind, we let her drive.
Acts 27:16 And running under a certain island which is called Clauda, we had much work to come by the boat:
Acts 27:17 Which when they had taken up, they used helps, undergirding the ship; and, fearing lest they should fall into the quicksands, struck sail, and so were driven.
Acts 27:18 And we being exceedingly tossed with a tempest, the next day they lightened the ship;
In Acts 27:10 Paul tells them not to sail:
How many know we don't always listen to wise counsel,
(we could have saved ourselves a lot of grief and pain had we just listened to
those who tried to instruct us).
Acts 27:11 But they didn't listen And they sailed directly into the storm of their lives
Acts 27:18-19 They lightened the ship There's nothing like a bad storm for realigning priorities, (You find out real quick what you need and what is unnecessary, or excess baggage).
The ship was destroyed
But they made it to land on boards, and broken pieces of the ship:
Somebody ought to lift your hands right now and say (I'm going to make it) I may be broken but I'm still coming, wounded but I'm still coming, bleeding but I'm still coming, crying but I'm still coming, confused but I'm still coming, rejected but I'm still coming. Sick but I'm still coming!
I know I'm not everything I should be, I'm still struggling with some habits and hang-ups, I'm still wrestling with some anger and forgiveness issues, I still slip up every once and while and say something I shouldn't say.
I know I'm not where I should be by now, but I know I 'm moving in the right direction.
I know I may be chopping up the water all around me, but it's just because I don't want to drown
Acts 27:44 They all escaped safe to land:
Somebody needs to lift your hands right now and thank God that you made it through the storm,
It should have killed you, but you made it ( Most of it was your own fault, you brought it on yourself) but God had mercy on you and you made it.
You shouldn't have made it, You shouldn't be here, you shouldn't have made it through the storm,
(But just tell the devil) I'm still here
They've made it through the storm, landed on an island, the barbarians on that island begin to kindle a fire for them, Paul begins to gather sticks for the fire and out of the sticks, a viper fastens itself to Paul's hand
Now it says (Howbeit they looked) = to watch, to anticipate, to wait for,
There are people that are watching you who do not want you to make it, they are anxiously waiting and anticipating your downfall, they rejoice when they see you going through hard ships and trials,
Their watching, their waiting to celebrate your downfall, celebrate your breakdown, your defeat. There are people who are watching this Church waiting to celebrate its downfall. They are actually people with the sick mentality of believing they were the only reason the Church amounted to anything! When they leave God should close the doors.. Can I say They are not the ones able to remove the candlestick because they are not the ones who gave the candle!
When Paul should have swollen or fallen down dead suddenly:
This means that they had seen this happen before, and everytime it happened this was the end result.
He should have swollen or fallen down suddenly.
Medical science says you should have died
Every legal advisor says you should have died
Every natural circumstance says you shouldn't have made it
it should have killed you,
You should be in a mental institution or strung out on drugs, mad at God and mad at the world,
I came to tell somebody that not only are you going to make it, but you are not even going to look like you have been through what you've been through.
When the children of Israel went through the red sea, God didn't just part the waters, he dried the ground that they walked on.
When they reached the other side, there wasn't even mud between their toes.
For a little bit it looked like the enemy was closing in on them and was going to overtake them, but they just kept on walking.
And while they were walking God was taking care of their enemies, ( while they were walking their enemies were drowning).
I want to tell somebody today (just keep walking) it don't matter what they say about you, it don't matter what they do, it don't matter what the doctor says, it don't matter what the rebellious child says, it don't matter what the financial report says (this is no place to sit and cry, just keep walking) and when God gets through blessing you, you won't even look like you've been through what you've been through.
And the only evidence of you going through what you went through will be a greater faith, a greater love, a greater confidence and a greater commitment, and a greater testimony.
Somebody said: But you don't understand, I'm going through hell with this marriage, with this job, this sickness, this financial struggle.
You ought to be shouting right there
Your going through
You just prophesied your victory.
David said yeah though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death.
Your going through because you're going to.
Let me remind you, You're not the only one who has walked through the fire, (The bible tells us about 3 young Hebrew boys who walked through the fire, and when they came out the other side the only evidence that they had been through the fire was they were liberated from their bondage, ( Bondage) = The things that the enemy put on them, got burned off in the fire
They came out the other side with no hurt, their clothes were not burnt, their hair was not singed, and there was not even the smell of smoke on them.
It should have killed them:
Somebody said (well God just took the heat out of the fire, well somebody should have told those 3 men that threw them in about that, because the bible says it killed them.
I'm telling you that God doesn't always take the heat out of the fire, but he will walk with you through it.
Touch 3 people and tell them (it's not going to kill you).
I shouldn't be here right now, if the devil had his way I'd be strung out on drugs, or in a mental institution or in some hospital room, or prison.
But I'm here to tell you:
If you'll keep your faith in God, God is going to bring you out,
I'm working on my testimony ( I may be in the middle of my test, that means I'm half way through to a testimony)
Now back to Paul (The bible says, that Paul shook off the beast).
This wasn't a little wimpy wave of the hand (come on mister snake, this is not nice, please get off of me, please remove your fangs from my skin).
That viper had attached itself to Paul:
He had to become violent and aggressive against it.
There are some things that you can pray about and ask God to take away, and there are some things that you must become violent, and aggressive against.
And you must shake it loose, (You must shake like your life depends on it, because it does).
Shake that fear loose, shake that depression loose, shake that addiction loose, shake that spirit of hopelessness and suicide loose, shake that spirit of lust and perversion loose, shake that spirit of poverty and lack loose, shake that spirit of sickness loose.
Shake that dead powerless religion loose.
Shake for your family
Shake for your health
Shake for your mind
Shake for your ministry
Shake for your finances
Shake, shake, shake, shake,
Samson said: I will go out as at other times and shake myself (this leads us to believe that there was some Physical action on Samson's part that was a signal for the anointing, the anointing would come upon him as he shook.
There's something about shaking that activates the anointing.
But shaking is not all there is to it (You need to be close to the fire).
There are a lot of people who shake = go through the motions of being a Christian, but not that many really have the fire.
In fact we have reached the place where we are considered old fashioned and out dated if we talk about the Holy Ghost and fire.
But I still believe that the only thing that can destroy the devils power is the fire of God.
We still serve a God that answers by Fire.
Paul shook that viper off into the Fire.
You need to ask yourself, are you living close enough to the fire?
Is there fire in your church?
Is there fire in your home?
It should have killed me, but I shook it off
It should have killed me, but I got close to the fire, and the fire delivered me.
It should have killed Paul, they fully expected him to die, but he shook it off into the fire.
It was the fire that destroyed the thing that was trying to kill paul.
Somebody listening to me, the devil has sent something out to try and destroy you, but it's not going to kill you because Your turning up the heat and getting ready to shake yourself!.
Tell your neighbor (excuse me but I've got to turn up the thermostat)
You might want to move to the other side of the room
because I'm getting ready to praise like I've never praised before, I'm getting
ready to shout, I'm getting ready to worship.
I haven't got time to try and be cute, I haven't got time to try and fit in, I'm praising for my life.
I'm praising for my destiny
I'm praising for my ministry
I'm praising for my children
I'm praising for my health
Tell somebody I know it should have killed me, but I'm still here
I know I don't deserve it but I'm still here.
I know the devil meant it for evil, but God is turning it around for my good.
I know what it feels like to be ship wrecked, and I know what it feels like to be bitten by the serpent, but I also know what it feels like to shake that snake off into the fire.
Somebody listening to this message right now: You know it should have killed you, you know if the devil had his way you'd be dead, You know if some people had been able to carry out their intentions you'd be dead, (but touch three people and tell them) I'm still here.
I'm still here because God has a plan for my life, and a destiny and I'm going to fulfill it.