DBC’s DNA: “Why the Bible is the Authority of Our Lives and Church”

DBC DNA Sermon Series

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
Text: Psalm 119:133; Hebrews 4:12
Psalm 119:133 Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
Today we will affirm how the Bible is the Word of God, even from unsaved Historians, and that we can trust the Bible to be the authority of our lives and our church.
1. We have no proof that Jesus even existed except for the Bible!
Richard Dawkins, in his book, “The God Delusion” says, “Professor G.A. Wills of London University says that a study of history gives a serious historical case that Jesus never existed.”

2. Jesus isn’t God! He was a good man but not God.

Emperor Constantine invented the idea that Jesus is actually God in the 4th Century. He elevated Jesus from being a good Jewish teacher to being God. Under his instructions the Nicene Council of 425, 4th Century, declared Jesus to be God and not just a man.

3. In the Greek N.T. there are some 136,000 words. Of all the different manuscripts, when composed there is between 300,000-400,000 variances in those manuscripts. How do you explain that?

“So when you are challenged to why you believe the Bible is true what will you say?” We will answer all three of these arguments.



Did the writer care about truth and were they honest in making sure what they said was true?

Luke 1:1-4 Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us, Even as they delivered them unto us, which from the beginning were eyewitnesses, and ministers of the word; It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus, That thou mightest know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed.

Does this sound like someone who cares about truth?

Some say the story of Christ is just a myth. Listen to what Peter said who spent years with Christ.

II Peter 1:16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
Observe the “senses” John uses when he tells us about Jesus Christ.

I John 1:1-4 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.

ILLUSTRATION: When people make up lies & stories they leave them vague. They are intentionally vague because they can’t prove their story to be true. If they give a lot of detail you had better check them out.

EXAMPLE: Evolution: Big Bang…but where are the details?

QUOTE: “If all of creation came from a “Big Bang” then God is the Big Banger.”

NOTE: Look at the details:

Luke 3:1-2 Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of Ituraea and of the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene, Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests, the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness.

NOTE: 15th year, not 14th or 16th…15th! When, during the reign of Tiberius Caesar….details.
If it wasn’t true, skeptics could prove it wrong and discredit it.

FACT: Even skeptical scholars believe Luke is an incredibly accurate historian. He cared about truth and details.



EXAMPLE: “No one likes to make themselves look bad, they lie to make themselves look good.”

QUESTION: Do the gospel writers say things that make themselves look bad?

1. Peter told how he denied Christ. (IN ALL 4 GOSPELS)
2. Told how Jesus called Peter, satan, told him to get behind him. (Matthew and Mark)
3. How they argued over who was the greatest among themselves. (Mark 9:34; Luke 22:24)
4. After many teaching sessions, they privately asked Jesus to explain what He had taught because they did not understand. Were they dumb? (Matt, Mark and Luke)
5. How they slept in the Garden when Jesus needed them to pray: (Matthew, Mark and Luke)
6. How after His arrest they ALL forsook him. (Matthew 26:56)
7. Paul: Killing Christians, conflict with Barnabas, conflict with Simon Peter.
8. Resurrection Day: Women discover the empty tomb. Why is that odd? In that culture, women were not educated and could not testify in a court of law, so their testimony would have been considered worthless. (All 4 gospels)

“If you were not interested in truth and details you sure wouldn’t tell the resurrection story that way.”


5: Peter, Andrew, Phillip, Simon the Zealot, Thaddeus (Judas, son of James) were crucified.
1: Bartholomew was beaten to death then crucified upside down
1: James beheaded by Herod
1: Matthew/Levi died in Ethiopia, chopped to death by an axe.
1: Mathias was stoned to death
1: Judas hung himself
1: Thomas was thrust through 4 times with a spear
1: John lived to an old age and his body was never found.
Two more: Both were Anti-Jesus before their conversion (John 7:5): 1) James, ½ brother to Jesus and 2) Paul “Both willingly laid down their lives for Christ.”

“What more could these writers do to convince us that what they told us about Jesus Christ is true.”
“They cared about truth.”


Game: One person tells a phrase, and then the next person repeats it, on and on until the last person quotes the phrase out loud. Information is lost as it is passed from one to another.
In this game, 1) the less people involved and 2) the less time lost between times of sharing, the greater chance for accuracy.

NOTE: before the printing press, everything was written by hand. As the paper or skins they wrote on faded or disintegrated they would recopy. Over and over and over they had to recopy. The longer the generations passed the greater chance for error.

NOTE: 2,000 years have passed. Do we have reason to believe what has been passed down to us is accurate?

Textual critics ask 2 questions:
1. How much time do we have between the time it was actually written to the copies you have in front of you?

REMEMBER: The original would disintegrate or fade, then it would have to be recopied before it was lost…repeated from generation to generation.

So, the questions is, how close can we get back to the original? The more generations that pass, the greater chance of error.

2. How many manuscripts or portions do we have?


From the time between him writing it and the copy or portions we presently have.
“Do you think secular scholars are skeptical about reconstructing what they wrote?” NO!

QUOTE: Dan Wallace: Dallas Theological Seminary: “We have more and earlier manuscripts about the person of Jesus Christ than we do of anyone else in ancient history, including Julius Caesar and Alexander the Great! There are not too many skeptics of these guys:
“We have more evidence that Jesus existed than any other person in the ancient world, that no one ever questions their existence.”

REMEMBER: Basically 136,000 words in Greek N.T. and there are 300,000-400,000 variances: Here is your answer:
1. 75-85% is just spelling: Ex. John, Johnn = 2Ns
2. Other: Ex. Book of Mark: Some scribes used the word “He” in many places instead of using the name Jesus…others wrote in the name Jesus.
3. Fact: A) Some of the variants don’t take away the meaning of the text, in fact some help give clarity. B) Less than 1% of all variants have anything to do with central doctrines or important events. C) What this means: even if you are a skeptic and not a Christian, if you apply these Tests (Honesty, Telephone) you have to conclude that what we hold in our hands as N.T. Scripture is what the disciples first wrote down 2,000 years ago. There is more evidence for Jesus and his claims than any of his contemporaries, even though they had far more secular power and position and prominence than Jesus.


These scholars are very careful, detailed, and even considered boring by those who are looking for a “headline”. Jesus is gay, Jesus had an affair with Mary Magdalene.”
They deal with only what they can prove without adding drama or exaggeration.
1. Thallas: Historian who wrote Koine Greek: Some believe his works give the earliest reference to the historical Jesus, some 20 years after his crucifixion.
2. Mara-bar-Serapion: Stoic Philosopher, writing from prison, refers to the crucifixion of Jesus, “the execution of the wise king of the Jews.”
3. Josephus: Jewish Historian: refers to Jesus two times: 1) As the famous teacher and healer 2) As the brother of James who was executed and that Jesus was referred to by the title Christ.
4. Tacitus: Considered the greatest Roman Historian: confirms Jesus was executed under direction of Pontius Pilot.
5. Pliny the Younger: 61-112 A.D.: Lawyer, Author and Magistrate of Ancient Rome: He executed Christians for their worship and belief in Jesus Christ.
6. Suetonius = Roman Historian: 69-122 A.D. Referred to Christians and Jesus Christ in his work, “Lives of the 12 Caesars”.
7. Lucian of Samosata: Satirist: Comedian A.D. 125-180
8. Celsus: Greek Philosopher: in all of his 1st books addresses the person, Jesus, as “Chresto”
9. Talmud: Jewish Law Book
10. Jewish Bible

FACT: Jesus existence, fame as a teacher and healer and crucifixion under Pontius Pilot and being called by the title “Christ” would be regarded as beyond reasonable doubt by virtually all professional historians in any reputable university around the world.
Example of today’s atheist: Richard Dawkins: “The God Delusion”: He claims that Jesus Christ did not even exist. His authority that he uses is Professor G.A. Willis of London University. WOW! What he doesn’t tell you is Professor Willis is a professor of music, not a historian….something fishy about these “new atheists”.

Historians regard the Gospels as a very important source for our knowledge of historical Jesus.
KEY: The N.T. is a collection of sources from different writers over the span of many years.
The writers wrote independently of each other. They did not write in collusion with each other. Even the skeptics accept this fact.
Because these different sources say roughly the same thing about persons and events, that makes their teaching more believable and historically reliable.

Some skeptics say the N.T. was written 100’s of years after the life and death of Christ. That is not true!!

NOTE: The oldest book (written test) is St. John. It was written in 90 A.D. That is 57 years after Christ’s death.

INCREDIBLE: “Oral Teaching”: What followers of Christ believed and taught before the books of the N.T. were written.

I Corinthians 15:3-5 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:

The Gospel: The death, burial and resurrection is believed to have been taught within months after the death and resurrection of Christ. Scholars and historians place this around 35 A.D.

FACT: As Paul quotes the “Gospel” and puts it into print, it proves that the Death, Burial, and Resurrection of Christ was not from a legend growing up over time, but was written in the N.T.

QUESTION: Why is that so important?
How long after Christ’s death was the literature of Christ written? That is the issue!! (50 years)

1. Mohammed: founder of Islamic faith: the earliest biography of him was written around 760 A.D. That is 125 years after his death.

2. Buddha: the earliest records of his life were written 350 years after his death.
“All Islamic and Buddhist scholars agree.”

Pool of Bethesda: John 5 “Pool 5 columns holding up the porches over the pool.

Pool of Siloam: John 9: Dug all around in the Siloam district of the city but could not find the pool. June 2004 while working on the sewage in the old city, they accidentally uncovered the steps leading down to the pool.

Remember I began by telling you the teaching that Christ was God was invented in 425 by Constantine at the Council of Nicene, in the 4th Century. Jesus was just a man. Dan Brown used this information to write “The Da Vinci Code”.

Nov. 8, 2005: In Megiddo, when adding onto a prison, they found a house (renovated into a church) that is the oldest church in Israel. It pre-dates Constantine and the Nicene Council by more than a century. On the floor of this house/church is a Mosaic 580 sq. ft. This Mosaic has fish symbols and Gr. Inscription that these believers worshipped the God, Jesus Christ.

Most people aren’t free: Enslaved to Past, Habits, Fears, Expectations of Others, Finances, Bitterness and Can’t Forgive, Own Desires, and don’t know how to change, things you don’t like about yourself but you can’t change.

“Know the truth, the truth will set you free.”


John 8:31-32 “…If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

John 14:6 “…I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

1) You can’t just straddle the fence.
2) You can’t just be impartial about Jesus.
3) If Jesus isn’t who He said He was, then let’s go home: Close churches, hospitals, and schools because they were all started by Christians. First school and hospital and church!
4) If He is the way, truth and life, you owe him your life. You owe Him your worship.
ILLUSTRATION: My name is Doug Ripley.
I am a good teacher: ok, I buy that.
I am a godly man: ok, maybe.
I am a Prophet of God: ok, speaks God’s Word.
I am the Son of God, the only way to Heaven: That changes the situation: Jesus is either the biggest con-man or the Son of God.
I’m betting my life that the Bible is true. What are you betting your life on?
1. Don’t let blood be thicker that Bible.
2. Don’t let money be more valuable than Bible.
3. Don’t let sin be more exciting than Bible.
4. Don’t let career be more important than Bible.
5. Don’t let anything or anyone take your Bible away from you!


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DBC’s DNA: Why Getting the Donkey is Such a Big Deal: “The Great Commission”

DBC DNA Sermon Series

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
Text: Luke 19:29-40
INTRODUCTION: All scripture has 3 applications.
1) Historical: This really happened. These disciples went to this home and unloosened a donkey to take back to Jesus. When asked, “What are you doing? They said the Lord needs him.
2) Spiritual: We need to obey the Lord even when it doesn’t seem right. God will have to take care of the details.
3) Doctrinal: He will show us the “Great Commission” in this text.
All Four Gospels Contain This Story
1) Matthew 21:1-11 – Here the colt is called an ass.
2) Mark 11:1-11
3) John 12:12-15 – Here the animal is called an ass’ colt.
* When all four Gospels tell the same story, we must pay close attention.
A. THEY HAD TO LEAVE: (V. 29) “he sent two of his disciples”

FACT: The phrase “go ye” will always be associated with the context of evangelism and The Great Commission.

Matthew 28:19 “Go ye therefore and teach all nations.”

Mark 16:15 “Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel.”

APPLICATION: God has called all of us to share our faith so get prepared and learn how and do it.

2. THEIR OBEDIENCE REQUIRED GOING TO A CERTAIN AREA: (V. 30) “the village over against you”

NOTE: That phrase means the area directly in front of you. They understood this because they didn’t ask where they were to go.

FACT: We are to evangelize those in front of you. Those we are around daily and those God brings in front of us in our daily lives. Those where we work, where we live, where we play, where we go to school, are our mission field.
John 4:35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.
Our Jerusalem is a fertile mission field. God has prepared these people for you to talk to them about Christ and salvation.
STORY: When I got saved as a senior in high school, one of the students who I had gone to school with since the 1st grade came up to be and said, “Please forgive me.” I have been a Christian for many years but I never witnessed to you because I thought you would not want Christ and Christianity.” You will never know who is ready if you don’t ask them.
3. THEIR OBEDIENCE CAUSED ANTICIPATION: (V. 30) “at your entering ye shall find.”
FACT: The find is God’s responsibility. My responsibility is to go and God will do the rest.
TRUTH:  Mark 11:4-6 And they went their way, and found the colt tied by the door without in a place where two ways met; and they loose him. And certain of them that stood there said unto them, What do ye, loosing the colt? And they said unto them even as Jesus had commanded: and they let them go.
* “door” – John 10:9  I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
* “two ways meet” – Matthew 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
NOTE: They go and they find and they loose the colt (donkey). It is all possible because God had directed them and prepared the way.
QUOTE: “Witnessing is going in the power of the Holy Spirit and leaving all the results up to God.”
Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.
PICTURE: This donkey (ass) is a picture of an unsaved man.
Job 11:12 For vain men would be wise, though man be born like a wild ass’s colt.
* Man is “like” a donkey. They are loud, stubborn, and they keep everything around them stirred up.
Exodus 13:13 And every firstling of an ass thou shalt redeem with a lamb; and if thou wilt not redeem it, then thou shalt break his neck: and all the firstborn of man among thy children shalt thou redeem.
Exodus 34:20 But the firstling of an ass thou shalt redeem with a lamb: and if thou redeem him not, then shalt thou break his neck. All the firstborn of thy sons thou shalt redeem. And none shall appear before me empty.
The ass had to be redeemed by a lamb or he was to die with a broken neck. So, Judas is a picture of an unsaved man who went out and hanged himself (broke his neck).
John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
The ass and ox were not to be hooked to a plow together.
Deuteronomy 22:10 Thou shalt not plow with an ox and an ass together.
TRUTH: “never man sat” (V. 30) He had not ever been ridden or trained. We are to go to those who have never been saved. We are to reach the lost.
Romans 15:20 Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man’s foundation:
So much church growth today is transfer growth rather than through evangelism. We must get back to evangelism.
B. THEY HAD TO LOOSE HIM: (V. 30) This is what the Gospel does. We are to present the Gospel and God does the rest.
Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
John 8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
Luke 4:18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
Romans 6:18 Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.
C. THEY HAD TO LEAD HIM BACK TO JESUS: (V. 30) “bring him hither”
NOTE: This is the first step in discipleship. It isn’t enough just to find the donkey and loose him, we have to get him to Jesus. That is discipleship. We are to bring him to Christ’s body the church. We can’t by-pass the church and ever make disciples.
Ephesians 1:22-23 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.
Matthew 28:19-20 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
NOTE: Our job is to “lead him” and not ride him; that is the Lord’s job. We get them to the Lord and His body then He will supernaturally ride him and domesticate him.
FACT: Horses all look good in the fields but you don’t know if they have been domesticated until you get on one. You will find out real fast if the Lord has tamed him.
II. THE DISCIPLES’ REASON FOR GOING: (V. 31) “the Lord hath need of him”
* Our Lord still desires to have worshippers. God has a plan for all our lives and we will only know in eternity what God will do with the next person we lead to Christ.
A. THE REACTION OF SOME: (V. 33) “Why loose ye the colt?”
* Just leave people alone! Their lives are none of our business! We can’t do that if we really believe there is a hell and that our Lord has commanded us to take the Gospel to the world.
STORY: A Christian man came up to a well-dressed lady in a hotel lobby. He spoke to her about Christ and the Gospel. After their conversation her husband came back into the lobby and asked his wife what was that man saying? She told him and he said, “Did you tell him it was none of his business?” Her reply was, “If you could have seen the look on his face and heard the sound of his voice, you would have believed it was his business.”
B. THE RESPONSE OF THE DISCIPLES: (V. 35) “they brought him to Jesus”
* These disciples had no power or persuasion over the owners of this donkey. Their job was to go and loose him and bring him to Jesus. All of the details the Lord had to work out.
*Our job is to obey. His job is to bring the results.
C. THE RIDING OF THE COLT: V. 35) “they set Jesus thereon”
* Here is an untrained donkey that has never been ridden but when Jesus sets on him he is completely trained. He is as gentle as a lamb.
* Our Jesus changes things. He can change anything or anyone.
* Here is always the outcome of obedience. Of all the disciples who were rejoicing, which two do you think rejoiced the most?
CONCLUSION: We have a job to do and it begins at home:
Matthew 28:19-20 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
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DBC’s DNA: “Why Missions is a Big Deal”

DBC DNA Sermon Series

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
TEXT: Survey of Acts 1-13

INTRODUCTION: You have heard me say many times, the two greatest mistakes I made in my 1st pastorate were 1) I did not empower or build the ministry on my people. I tried to do it all. 2) I did not give them a world vision. My last two years I tried to correct my mistakes but when I came here to be your pastor the very first thing I began to do was 1) Empower you to do the ministry, 2) Give you a world vision.

Any church whose foundation is “Built on the Word of God and on the People of God with a Vision to Reach the World” will be stable and healthy for many years to come.

But what happens if a church doesn’t have a vision to reach the world? The Jerusalem Church is the greatest example of a church that had everything you need to reach the world but they disobediently chose not to.

Here is What They Had:


Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

This is the repeated and clarified commission that Jesus gave some 40 days earlier in Matthew 28 and Mark 16. They received Power, the Holy Ghost, to be witnesses both (at the same time) in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the Ends of the Earth (home & foreign missions).


Acts 2:6, 41 …the multitude came together…and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.

* They had more than enough people to get the job done. These 3,000 added to those who were already following the Lord gave them an army of workers, yet they didn’t do the mission.


Acts 3:1-8 Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.

The Power and Presence of God was with them just like He promised and still they didn’t do the mission.


Acts 4:34-37 Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need. And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus, Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.

Can you imagine having a multitude of people who were willing to give like those people? No one had a need that wasn’t met. The people were giving willingly and God was blessing mightily. No one could say, “if we had the money we could do such and such.” They had the money, but they didn’t do the Mission!

Here are the Results of What Happens When a Church Has No Mission:


Acts 5:1-11 = Ananias & Sapphira, his wife lie about their giving. They wanted it to look like they gave more than they really gave, even though they were not required to give anything.

* No church stays spiritual and healthy if it doesn’t do Missions. There are always consequences to disobedience.


Acts 6:1 And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.

* If we don’t do Missions we begin to look inward rather than outward and we become selfish and self-centered.

* Rather than fighting the devil and pulling together for the mission, they are fighting each other and pulling away from each other and the mission is not getting done.


Acts 7:57-58 Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul.

* They allow Steven to be martyred without raising a finger to help him. Their hearts had become hard and cold as a stone.

*The devil is winning from the inside. The Apostles are distracted from prayer and teaching the Word. The unity of the fellowship is gone and they aren’t even standing up for one another. No wonder they are not doing Missions.


Acts 8:1  And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.

“If the church doesn’t do Acts 1:8, they become an Acts 8:1 church.” They were to send out Missionaries all over the world but they didn’t so God scattered them. That is what they should have done and been blessed for it. They didn’t do it and they were scattered. God sent them out. Phillip goes to Samaria (8:5-8) and others were scattered, all but the Apostles.

* God will do His work with us or without us. But if He does it without us, we miss the blessings and experience the pain of losing rather than the joy of sending.

Proverbs 11:24-26 There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty. The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself. He that withholdeth corn, the people shall curse him: but blessing shall be upon the head of him that selleth it.

Chapters 9 & 10 are Parenthetical Chapters: The Jew Missed His Opportunity so God is Going to Use the Gentile.

NOTE: Chapter 9 – We have the conversion of Saul who will be the apostle to the Gentiles.

NOTE: Chapter 10 – the Gentiles need to receive the Gospel, so the Holy Spirit has to work on Peter’s heart so he will go to the Gentile home of Cornelius because Peter has the keys to the Kingdom.

Matthew 16:19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

* When he gets there the Gentile received the Holy Spirit just like the Jews did at Pentecost. Peter brings brethren with him from Jerusalem who are witnesses of God’s work among the Gentile as well.

Acts 11:15-18 And as I began to speak, the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning. Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost. Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as he did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God? When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

* Now that the Jerusalem Church has been scattered, what kind of church will God raise up to do His mission?


Acts 11:19-21 Now they which were scattered abroad upon the persecution that arose about Stephen travelled as far as Phenice, and Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to none but unto the Jews only. And some of them were men of Cyprus and Cyrene, which, when they were come to Antioch, spake unto the Grecians, preaching the Lord Jesus. And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord.

* We are introduced to the Antioch Church. After many are converted, the Jerusalem Church sends Barnabas to disciple and train these new believers. Once he gets there he realizes he needs help so he goes to Tarsus and gets Paul who had been planting Gentile churches for 8 years. Paul returns and helps Barnabas. This church is our model New Testament Church.

There are three things this church is noted for:

1) They were called Christians (little Christs):

Acts 11:26 And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.

2) They were willing to support Missions: They do Missions!!

Acts 11:29-30 Then the disciples, every man according to his ability, determined to send relief unto the brethren which dwelt in Judaea: Which also they did, and sent it to the elders by the hands of Barnabas and Saul.

NOTE: Paul calls the Jerusalem church the “Poor Saints”.

Romans 15:26 For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem.

FACT: When you don’t do Missions, God will take His resources that He has given us and give them to someone else who will do His mission.

3) They send out missionaries: They do Missions!!

Acts 13:1-5 Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away. So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus. And when they were at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews: and they had also John to their minister.

This is why Antioch is our model New Testament Church. They do His missions and they receive what the Jerusalem Church had only they used it. Our line of Christianity and our Bibles can be traced all the way back to Antioch.

CONCLUSION: So, we must do missions. The day we stop and focus on ourselves and not others, the blessings will be removed and we will die.

NOTE: So many preachers & church leaders literally lead their churches to not do Missions or to just send a couple of offerings in a year because they are afraid if they really go after Missions, they will not have enough money and resources to operate as a church. Foolish thinking!

QUOTE: “When the tide of Missions comes in, all the boats in the Harbor rise.”

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DBC’s DNA: “Ox Cart Christianity”

DBC DNA Sermon Series

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
TEXT: I Chronicles 13:1-14  And David consulted with the captains of thousands and hundreds, and with every leader. And David said unto all the congregation of Israel, If it seem good unto you, and that it be of the Lord our God, let us send abroad unto our brethren every where, that are left in all the land of Israel, and with them also to the priests and Levites which are in their cities and suburbs, that they may gather themselves unto us: And let us bring again the ark of our God to us: for we enquired not at it in the days of Saul. And all the congregation said that they would do so: for the thing was right in the eyes of all the people. So David gathered all Israel together, from Shihor of Egypt even unto the entering of Hemath, to bring the ark of God from Kirjathjearim. And David went up, and all Israel, to Baalah, that is, to Kirjathjearim, which belonged to Judah, to bring up thence the ark of God the Lord, that dwelleth between the cherubims, whose name is called on it. And they carried the ark of God in a new cart out of the house of Abinadab: and Uzza and Ahio drave the cart. And David and all Israel played before God with all their might, and with singing, and with harps, and with psalteries, and with timbrels, and with cymbals, and with trumpets. And when they came unto the threshingfloor of Chidon, Uzza put forth his hand to hold the ark; for the oxen stumbled. And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzza, and he smote him, because he put his hand to the ark: and there he died before God. And David was displeased, because the Lord had made a breach upon Uzza: wherefore that place is called Perezuzza to this day. And David was afraid of God that day, saying, How shall I bring the ark of God home to me? So David brought not the ark home to himself to the city of David, but carried it aside into the house of Obededom the Gittite. And the ark of God remained with the family of Obededom in his house three months. And the Lord blessed the house of Obededom, and all that he had.
INTRODUCTION: There is a lot of hype today about what is needed to grow the church, because the church is in decline.
STATISTICS: by Rusty Kuhn: About Southern Baptist Churches
1.  We declined last year by 105, 708 members.
2.  Our baptisms were down to only 314,956, the lowest since 1948 when we only had 6 million members, where today we have 16 million members.
3.  What we are calling church growing today is from transfers of membership and not from conversions.
4.  93-94% of our churches are not evangelistically effective.
5.  What is the solution? We need to go back to simply doing church growth the way God told us to do it. Our text today will give us real insight to what we at DBC need to do.
A. The Significance of the Ark:
*The Ark was the divine symbol of God’s presence in the midst of His people. It was the place where God communed with Israel’s leaders. It lead them through the wilderness and across Jordan into the Promise Land and it preceded them in many of their battles.
B. The Capture of the Ark: (I Samuel 4-5)
*Israel goes to battle with the Philistines and 4,000 Israelis are killed. Eli’s wicked sons, Hophni and Phinehas, go to Shiloh and get the Ark of God to carry it into the battle. They thought the Ark would save them but it didn’t. Thirty thousand more men were killed, plus Eli’s sons. (Chapter 4)
*The Philistines take the Ark to Ashdod and place it in their Pagan Temple of Dagon. The next morning Dagon was fallen on his face. They put him back up and the next morning his head was broken off and his two hands. They were so afraid they never came into his temple again. (Chapter 5)
* God killed many in Ashdod and smote many with emerods (inflamed lymph glands (knots) all over their bodies. So they send the Ark to the city of Gath and God did the same thing to them, so they sent it to Ekran and it happens again. So they determine to send it back to Israel after 7 months of God’s wrath. (6:1)
* They send it back with a trespass offering of 5 golden emerods for the cities of the Philistines (6:17) and 5 golden mice for the number of Philistine Lords. (6:4)
* They make a NEW CART (6:7) and have two cows that have never been trained to pull a cart, plus they had new calves that were taken away from them to pull the cart and go a certain route. If they did (which would be a miracle) then the God of the Israelites had caused all this destruction if not it was just bad luck in life. They pull the cart back into the Land of Israel, Bethshemesh. (Chapter 6)
*The men of Bethshemesh looked into the Ark and 50,070 of them died, so the men of Kirjathjearim go and bring the Ark to the house of Abinadab (7:1) where it remained 50 years during Saul’s reign (I Chronicles 13:3)
C. The Plan to Return the Ark: (I Chronicles 13:1-5)
* David, Israel’s new king, wanted to start right by bringing the Ark back to Jerusalem, where again they would enquire of the Lord. (3)
*All of the people agreed, so David and all Israel went to get the Ark. They built a NEW CART (7) to carry the Ark. They chose two young men, Uzza and Ahio to drive the cart and David and all Israel played instruments before the Ark, but when one of the oxen stumbled (9), Uzzah touched the Ark so it would not turn over and God killed him. (10)
*This put fear in David so they left the Ark at the House of Obededom for 3 months. What caused this catastrophe? What went wrong? Wasn’t this the right thing to do? Their motives were right and it would seem right for Uzza to protect the Ark, so why this tragic outcome?
*The answer lies in the Scriptures:
Exodus 25:14-15  And thou shalt put the staves into the rings by the sides of the ark, that the ark may be borne with them. The staves shall be in the rings of the ark: they shall not be taken from it.
Numbers 4:4-6  This shall be the service of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation, about the most holy things: And when the camp setteth forward, Aaron shall come, and his sons, and they shall take down the covering vail, and cover the ark of testimony with it: And shall put thereon the covering of badgers’ skins, and shall spread over it a cloth wholly of blue, and shall put in the staves thereof.
Numbers 4:15 …the sons of Kohath shall come to bear it: but they shall not touch any holy thing, lest they die…
Numbers 7:9  But unto the sons of Kohath he gave none: because the service of the sanctuary belonging unto them was that they should bear upon their shoulders.
The Ark was never made to ride on a cart but to be carried on the shoulders of the priests and they were not to touch it or they would die. The Scriptures are very clear on this subject.
*So where did David get the idea of the Ox Cart? He got it from the Philistines (I Samuel 6). Instead of following the Scriptures, David imitates the Philistines, and builds a new cart to carry the Ark. (I Chronicles 13:7)
FACT: So many times we try to do ministry like the world tells us. There are a lot of great tools today to help us do ministry better but the Scripture is clear on what we are to do.
Acts 2 tells us the 6 Functions of the Church in making disciples:
1. Prayer: This is the foundation that everything is built on.
2. Evangelism: Bring people to a relationship with Christ.
3. Discipleship: Every spiritual baby has to grow up.
4. Ministry: Taking responsibility is what makes us grow.
5. Fellowship: Having close accountability and relationships protect us as we grow.
6. Worship: We need private and corporate worship in order to grow.
This is hard work. This takes commitment. There is no easy or quick way to do these things. We either do it God’s way or we fail.
I Chronicles 15:12-15  And said unto them, Ye are the chief of the fathers of the Levites: sanctify yourselves, both ye and your brethren, that ye may bring up the ark of the Lord God of Israel unto the place that I have prepared for it. For because ye did it not at the first, the Lord our God made a breach upon us, for that we sought him not after the due order. So the priests and the Levites sanctified themselves to bring up the ark of the Lord God of Israel. And the children of the Levites bare the ark of God upon their shoulders with the staves thereon, as Moses commanded according to the word of the Lord.
I Chronicles 15:25-29  So David, and the elders of Israel, and the captains over thousands, went to bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord out of the house of Obededom with joy. And it came to pass, when God helped the Levites that bare the ark of the covenant of the Lord, that they offered seven bullocks and seven rams. And David was clothed with a robe of fine linen, and all the Levites that bare the ark, and the singers, and Chenaniah the master of the song with the singers: David also had upon him an ephod of linen. Thus all Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the Lord with shouting, and with sound of the cornet, and with trumpets, and with cymbals, making a noise with psalteries and harps. And it came to pass, as the ark of the covenant of the Lord came to the city of David, that Michal, the daughter of Saul looking out at a window saw king David dancing and playing: and she despised him in her heart.
David does it God’s way and the blessing came. We must do God’s work, God’s way (Biblical). Even then not everyone will be happy with how we do it (V. 29) It is important to note that Michal remained barren because of her actions. (II Samuel 6:23)
NOTE: We can do a lot of things that are good but if we want fruit that remains, we must fulfill the Functions of the Church: Prayer, Evangelism, Discipleship, Ministry, Fellowship and Worship.
1) We must have a personal commitment to the Word of God in our lives. The Word of God must be our authority!
2) We must have a personal commitment to obey His Word!
3) Then, God’s work done God’s way by God’s people will produce fruit that remains.
John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
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A Study of Galatians: “No Turning Back”

Legalism Liberty Sermon Series GRAPHIC

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
Text: Galatians 4:8-11
INTRODUCTION: Last week we talked about our great gift of the Holy Spirit living in us as the token and promise of our relationship with Christ.
Today, Paul is frustrated that they would trade grace for law; that they would go back into the bondage of rules and rituals that didn’t work. He is trying to get them to wake up!
* “Now” indicates that these people had not always known God, especially these Gentiles who had come out of the Greek and Roman religions with an entire “pantheon” of gods and goddesses like Zeus, Neptune, Mercury, Aphrodite and Bacchus to name a few.
These mythological gods did not interact with inferior human beings. In fact, the people feared them and sacrificed to them to keep them happy so they wouldn’t hurt them.
* When they received Paul’s message of Jesus Christ, they received Him and now have a personal relationship with Him. They could know Him and not just know about Him.
John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
STORY: In Holly Springs, Mississippi, there’s a man who claims to be the world’s greatest Elvis fan. Paul McCloud attended 120 Elvis concerts, and has collected hundreds of scrapbooks that contain over a million references to Elvis. He owns 55,000 records and CDs of Elvis. He named his only son Elvis. He has renamed his home in Graceland Too, and has opened it to the public (for a price) as a shrine to Elvis. It’s the #1 tourist attraction for Japanese tourists in Holly Springs. Paul McCloud is obsessed with Elvis and knows every detail about his life. But if you ask him if he ever met Elvis, he’ll say that the greatest regret of his life is that he never met Elvis. Paul McCloud is an Elvis expert, but He doesn’t know Elvis.
Jesus gives a very sobering statement about the last judgment, of how people will state all they have done for God but didn’t know God.
Matthew 7:21-22 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
That baby in a manger, Emmanuel, “God with us”, He came to have a relationship with us. This is one time when name dropping is appropriate.
Philippians 3:10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
I Corinthians 8:3 But if any man love God, the same is known of him.
SONG: “Until You Know the Love of God” by Rusty Goodman
If you could own all the world and its money,
Build castles tall enough to reach the sky above;
If you could know everything there was to know about life’s game,
Yet you’ve known nothing until you’ve known God and His love.
Until you’ve known the loving hand that reaches down to a fallen man
And lifts him up from out of sin where he has trod;
Until you’ve known just how it feels to know that God is really real;
Then you’ve known nothing until you’ve known the love of God.
If in your lifetime you could meet ev’rybody
And you could call every name from here to yon;
But if you’ve not come face to face with Jesus and His saving grace,
Then you’ve known nothing until you’ve known God and His love.
* “weak & beggarly” = all of the rules and rituals were just shadows of the real thing and Jesus is the real thing.
Colossians 2:14, 16-17 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.
* Christ is the reality.
ILLUSTRATION: On a bright sunny day, we walk up to each other, we would both have shadows of our bodily forms. Now would we talk to each other’s shadows or would we talk to each other? Why would you want to worship the things that are a shadow, when we have Christ here now? A real relationship with Christ is what we want and what we can have.
Today, give Christ what He wants from you, your whole heart.
1) David’s words to Solomon:
I Chronicles 28:9 And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever.
2) Christ’s words to us:
Matthew 22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
3) Paul’s words to the church:
Colossians 1:18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.
* Paul understood how much of his life was invested in starting the churches in Galatia. It grieved him to think it was in vain, after all he had done.
Galatians 4:19-20 My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you, I desire to be present with you now, and to change my voice; for I stand in doubt of you.
ILLUSTRATION: As parents raising children we experience disappointment and wonder if all our labors and sacrifices were in vain, if our children make bad choices.
III John 4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.
CONCLUSION: Today we celebrate God’s gift to us, His Son!  Let’s build that relationship; Let’s give him our whole heart; Let’s not disappoint Him or His people, “We will not turn back.”
I wonder if God cries when we do the things we do.
Do love drops fill His eyes cause He loves us oh so true?
Sometimes I feel such hurt when I try to realize, even though He’s God, I wonder if God cries?
I wonder if God cries; is His heart filled with pain?
Does He bow and weep when we damn His holy name?
I wish I could see Him and for the world apologize when we stumble so, I wonder if God cries.
Maybe time will tell when we reach that distant shore, with all His children home maybe God will cry no more,
Even though He’s God, I wonder if God cries.
Resources: John R. Rice Study Bible; Jeff Adams – “Reality Living”, Greg Axe – “Galatians”, David Dykes -“Discover life Ministries”, Warren Wiersbe – Commentary; Sermon central Illustrations.
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A Study of Galatians: “School is Out, Time to Graduate”

Legalism Liberty Sermon Series GRAPHIC

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
Text: Galatians 3:15-29

INTRODUCTION: Paul asked them a series of questions to examine if they are falling for the false teachers from Jerusalem. Then he reminds them of the great object lesson of blessing and curse that Moses presented to the people before they got into the Promise Land and then Joshua carried out the actual object lesson when he got into the Promise Land, with Gerizim representing the blessings and Ebal representing the curse. (Joshua 8)

Today he lays out such a compelling argument that God’s promises and covenants cannot be annulled or added to, then he goes to the argument of how the Law was only a school master to bring us to Christ.
Paul uses (4) four statements that help us understand the relationships between Promise and Law.
* The word promise is used (8) times in these verses. It refers to God’s promise to Abraham, that in him all the nations of the earth would be blessed.
* (V. 15) Paul explains how a contract works. Once two parties agree and it’s confirmed by their signatures, they could not be canceled or changed by an outside party. If it is to be changed it is only changed by the two original partners.
* These false teachers taught that the giving of the Law changed the original covenant and Paul argues it did not. No third party can change a contract/covenant only the two original persons who made the contract.
* (V. 16) Paul reveals this covenant was made not only to Abraham but to Christ. The title of “Seed” goes back to Genesis 3:15 where God promised the “Seed” of the woman (Christ) would crush Satan’s head.
From that time on satan has tried to stop her Seed from being born. The war was on satan but could not stop his birth, could not stop His ministry and could not keep Him in the grave.
* (V. 17) The Law coming some 430 years later cannot change the promise God made to Abraham and Christ.
* (V. 18) God gave His promise and unlike man God keeps His promise.
NOTE: When the Law was given in Exodus 19, there were thunders and lightnings and a thick cloud upon the Mount and the sound of loud trumpets and all the people trembled in fear. Then God descended on the Mount in a great fire and smoke came out like a great furnace and the whole mountain quaked greatly. God’s voice came out of the Mount. Listen to how it is explained in the book of Hebrews.
Hebrews 12:18-21 For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest, And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard intreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more (For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a dart: And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:)
When God gave the covenant with Abraham in Genesis 15, he divided the sacrifices into two pieces and put Abraham asleep and walked between the pieces as a smoking furnace and a burning lamp. It was not as dramatic as the giving of the Law but the Law was not greater.
1) It (Law) was temporary: “It was good only until the Seed should come.” God’s promise to Abraham and His Seed were unconditional, it was by grace but the Law demanded that certain conditions be met but no one could keep them all. Then Christ, the Seed, came and the Law was done away and now it’s righteous demands are fulfilled in us through the Spirit.
Romans 8:1-4 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the Law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the Law of sin and death. For what the Law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
2) It (Law) required a mediator: (19b-20) A mediator stands between two parties and helps them to come to an agreement.
* Israel received the Law by the disposition of angels (Acts 7:53). They received the Law third-hand from God to angels to Moses.
* God made His covenant with Abraham personally without a mediator. There was no need for a go-between.
NOTE: The Law was temporary and required a mediator. The promise to Abraham was permanent and required no mediator because it is greater than the Law.
FACT: As sinners we need a mediator.
I Timothy 2:5-6 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
Now that we are saved we no longer need a mediator because we have an intercessor.
Romans 8:26-27 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.
Hebrews 7:25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.
The Spirit of God lives in us and all we have to do is ask Him and He will lead us by the Word of God and not the rules of man.
A. The Law couldn’t provide life: (21)
ILLUSTRATION: It is like out traffic Laws. They protect the traveler from anarchy and disaster on our highways. They help keep us safe but they can’t take us anywhere.
The Law can’t give us life. If righteousness and life could have come through the Law then Jesus would never have died on that cross.
B. The Law was given to reveal sin: (19A, 22)
ILLUSTRATION: The Law like a mirror helps us see the dirt on our faces. It helps us see we are sinners, but it is grace that provides cleansing through Jesus Christ.
I John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
The Law causes us to see our need for a Savior, but salvation is only by grace thru faith in Jesus Christ.
C. The Law was given to prepare the way for Christ: (23-26)
* (V. 23) We were like men on death row in the prison. The sentence had already been passed and we were waiting execution. Our only hope is a pardon from the Governor or President.
Matthew 2:6 And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
(V. 24-25) The Law was our school master:
ILLUSTRATION: This school master was a well-educated slave who took the children to and from school each day. He would teach him and even discipline him at home. He had two things he must accomplish with the child.
1) Educate the Child:
Romans 3:20 …by the Law is the knowledge of sin.
The Law helped educate a man to know he is a sinner and needs a Savior.
2) Graduate the Child:
His undergraduate degree is receiving Christ as Savior. He has now graduated, but he now needs to enroll for his “Master’s Degree”: Learn to walk in the Spirit. He no longer needs a school master.
Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
* The Law could reveal sin and, to a certain extent, control behavior, but it could not do for the sinner what Christ can do.
1) He justifies the ungodly (Romans 4:5), declares us righteous.
2) He makes us “one” with himself. We were separated but now we are one with Christ. We are baptized into His body. (27)
I Corinthians 12:12-14 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many.
3) We have “put on Christ” (27), we have changed our clothes. He takes our filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6) and gives us His robes of righteousness (Colossians 3:8-15).
NOTE: When a Roman child came of age he took off his childhood garments and put on the garments that adults would wear.
4) He made us all one in Christ: (V. 28) The Law created differences and distinctions but in Christ we are all one.
NOTE: Slaves were considered to be only pieces of property like animals. Women were kept confined and disrespected and Gentiles were low class citizens and looked down on by the Jews. A Pharisee would pray every day and thank God he was a Jew and not a slave, woman or Gentile.
5) He made is heirs of God (V. 29). We are heirs of the spiritual blessings God promised to Abraham.
Romans 8:16-17 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
DEFINITION OF GRACE by David Dykes: “God giving me what I need instead of what I deserve. I deserve death and hell, but instead, God has given me what I need most, forgiveness and acceptance. Faith is not just believing the facts about Jesus, it is trusting Jesus with your life and your future.”
CONCLUSION: Have you been to school? Did you learn anything? Are you ready to graduate to the fullness of life in Christ?
STORY: Harry Houdini was one of the most famous escape artists in history. He claimed he could be locked in any jail cell in the world, and he would escape within one hour. Once when he was in the British Isles a small town had built a new jail and they were proud of it. They invited Houdini to come see if he could escape. He accepted the invitation and when the door clanged shut, he asked the officers to give him privacy. He always hid a special lock pick he had designed in his belt. He removed the pick and began to work on the lock. After 30 minutes he was frustrated and he started to sweat as he intensified his work trying to pick the lock. An hour passed and he still wasn’t able to unlock the door. After the officers returned, Houdini collapsed in frustration against the prison door—and it swung open. The reason he couldn’t pick the lock was because it hadn’t been locked in the first place. The door had been locked only in his mind.
How many of us have had the same problem? We think the door to freedom and happiness can be picked open by our own efforts, when Jesus has already declared us to be free. You may be sweating and straining at the thoughts of facing a holy God. You may be locked up by your fear of the future, tormented by the fact that you can’t DO everything you think you should be doing for God. And meanwhile, through His grace, God has already unlocked the door to freedom—will you live in the freedom of His grace? That’s the great escape!
Resources: John R. Rice Study Bible; Jeff Adams – “Reality Living”, Greg Axe – “Galatians”, David Dykes -“Discover life Ministries”, Warren Wiersbe – Commentary; Sermon central Illustrations.
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A Study of Galatians: “You Have a Choice”

Legalism Liberty Sermon Series GRAPHIC

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
Text: Galatians 3:6-14

INTRODUCTION: When we come to this portion of scripture it is very clear that Paul is thinking about the great object lesson Moses gave to Israel when they entered the promise land. They could choose to be blessed or cursed. God is a sovereign God but He has given man a free will to make choices in our lives.

Deuteronomy 27:12-13 These shall stand upon mount Gerizim to bless the people, when ye are come over Jordan; Simeon, and Levi, and Judah, and Issachar, and Joseph, and Benjamin: And these shall stand upon mount Ebal to curse; Reuben, Gad, and Asher, and Zebulun, Dan, and Naphtali.
Paul reminds them that God has given them the Word to help them make the right choices.
(V. 6-9)
* “Abraham believed God”: Faith to believe comes from hearing the Word of God.
Romans 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Faith isn’t blind. Faith is believing what the Bible says and then doing it.
* Paul goes directly to the heart of these false teachers who are telling these Gentile young Christians they have to become Jews and receive Jesus to be saved. The Jewish people were proud of their relationship with Abraham.
*He takes them to the time of Abraham’s conversion. Years after he obeyed God’s Word and left the land of the Ur of Chaldees, God tells him how He will bless him.
Genesis 15:1-6 After these things the word of the Lord came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward. And Abram said, Lord God, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus? And Abram said, Behold, to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house is mine heir. And, behold, the word of the Lord came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir. And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be. And he believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness.
NOTE: The word “accounted” in (V. 6) and “counted” mean the same as the word “imputed” which means “to put to one’s account”. When we received Christ as our Savior, God’s righteousness was put to our account. God declared Abraham righteous because he believed God’s promise and it was before he was circumcised.
Romans 4:6, 9-12 Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also? for we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness. How was it then reckoned? when he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision. And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised: that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness might be imputed unto them also: And the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised.
This is such a powerful argument. Abraham was circumcised 14 years after Genesis 15:6. So, he was not made righteous because of circumcision but because of faith. Circumcision was a sign. The law came along 430 years after Abraham, so Abraham never lived under the law.
NOTE: (V. 7) “Know ye therefore”: Paul makes a powerful argument. If you want to be a child of Abraham now, you don’t keep the law, you believe God by faith. What we have in common with Abraham today isn’t circumcision but faith. We have had spiritual circumcision.
Colossians 2:11-12 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.
1) V. 8 “the scripture” = Paul is quoting Genesis 18:17-18.
Genesis 18:17-18 And the Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?
Genesis says, “The Lord said” and Paul says “the scripture”. Here is the great truth. “There is no difference between the “Living Word” and the “Written Word”. The “foreseeing” of the Word.
Romans 9:17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.
God had always promised to save the Gentiles by faith as He counted Abraham righteous by faith. (Genesis 12:1-3)
Galatians 3:29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
2) “Preached the Gospel unto Abraham”: This takes us back to Genesis 22.
John 8:56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.
God had promised Abraham that his seed would be as great in number as the stars, and he believed God. But:
A) He is 100 years old and Sarah is 90 years old. Romans 4:19 tell us that Abraham believed his seed was dead and Sarah’s womb was incapable of conceiving.
Romans 4:19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah’s womb:
B) God performs the miracle. (Genesis 21) They name him Isaac which means laughter because Sarah laughed when the angels told them they would have a son. (Genesis 18)
C) Then God asked Abraham to offer his son as a sacrifice. He tells him to go to the “place” in Moriah to make the sacrifice. That very place is where David brought from Araunah the Jebusite to make sacrifices to God (II Samuel 24:18-25) and it was the very site where Solomon built the Temple (II Chronicles 3:1). Also the Bible calls the place “Golgotha and Place of the Skull” where Jesus died on the cross. Today Gordon’s Calvary, which has a face like a skull is in the Mt. Moriah ridge, is the place we can see today where our Lord Jesus was crucified.
D) When Abraham offered his son, God stopped him and showed him a ram caught by his horns in a thicket and Abraham sacrificed him. It was at that time, God showed Abraham how His Son Jesus on this spot would die for our sins and Abraham rejoiced.
E) We really see Abraham’s faith as we read Hebrews 11:17-19.
Hebrews 11:17-19 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called: Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.
Abraham meant to bring that boy off that mountain alive. This kind of faith was counted to him for righteousness.
NOTE: Paul goes to the heart of the issue. We live by faith. We believe the Word of God. The greatest thing we can do to grow in faith is to get into the Word of God. We need to know what the Bible says about the issues we face in life. That is choosing the Blessed Life.
* Back to our object lesson. Now we look at the barren Mt. Ebal. Who would ever want the curses?
* (V. 10) Lets us know the curse is because we can’t live all the law. It is much more than just 10 Commandments (Exodus 20), it was the keeping of everything the law had to say, and there were 100s of tedious, obscure rules to keep.
NOTE: Let’s have some fun. Thirty-three years ago when I became your pastor I couldn’t have done this. It would not have been fun.
Deuteronomy 22 is where we will take a look at some of the tedious, obscure rules.
1) Dress:
Deuteronomy 22:5 The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God.
This verse was and is used to preach that women should not wear pants. Now if we want to make this a rule, we will have to take other rules from this chapter.
2) “Battlement”: Build this on your new house.
Deuteronomy 22:8 When thou buildest a new house, then thou shalt make a battlement for thy roof, that thou bring not blood upon thine house, if any man fall from thence.
Do you even know what it is? It was a rail so no one could fall off the roof.
3) “Divers sorts”: Garments with mixed materials. Ex.) 40% cotton and 60% polyester.
Deuteronomy 22:11 Thou shalt not wear a garment of divers sorts, as of woollen and linen together.
4) “Laws of Virginity” = she as to be stoned.
Deuteronomy 22:20-21 But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel: Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father’s house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.
No wonder it is a curse. James 2:10 says, “If we have just one violation of the law we have broken the whole law.”
ILLUSTRATION: Police don’t reward us for keeping the law. Their job is to find and punish the law breaker. That’s why it is a curse. None of us keep all the laws, all the time.
* “the just shall live by faith”: This is a quote from Habakkuk 2:4.
Habakkuk 2:4 Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.
Notice it says, “by his faith”. God omits one word from the Old Testament three times in the New Testament.
Romans 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
Hebrews 10:38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.
Here is our text:
Galatians 3:11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
The omission is deliberate and carries a specific doctrinal application. The Old Testament Jew lived by works, “his faith”, but the New Testament, born again believer lives by faith, the faith of the Son of God who loved us and gave himself for us. (Galatians 2:20) We can quit a lot of sins, drinking, sex, lying, etc. but it will never get us to Heaven. So don’t trust your works, put your faith in Jesus who saved us by His sacrifice and keeps us by His power and grace. Our faith will always be a substandard. God goes to great detail (3) three times to help us know the difference.
*V. 12 is a quote from Leviticus 18:5.
Leviticus 18:5 Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the Lord.
The New Testament believer lives IN CHRIST, not in the law. Paul even contrasts the moral self-righteousness with the saving grace and faith.
Romans 10:5 For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.
All of us are sinners. None of us are good enough for Heaven. We all need a Savior.
* (V.13) This is a quote from Deuteronomy 21:22-23. Crucifixion was not a form of capital punishment used by the Jews; they practiced stoning. Rome borrowed crucifixion from the Persians around 800 BC. This is another prophecy of scripture.
Historically, Deuteronomy 21 crucifixion was unknown, but it was a practice of taking a corpse and hanging it on a tree for a public spectacle. It was there as a curse. Christ was made a curse, a public spectacle, for us so He could take away our sins.
II Corinthians 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
* (V. 14) This promise is the indwelling of the Spirit that the Old Testament Saint never had. The Holy Spirit could be taken away from them. He would come on them and off of them. (I Samuel 16:14 & Judges 16:20) But the believer in Christ will never have the worry that David had.
Psalm 51:11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.
He will never leave us or forsake us:
Hebrews 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
John 14:16 “abide forever”
CONCLUSION: Today we have a choice…blessed life or curse…you can choose God’s way of faith or man’s way of works. How have you been doing? How’s your life going? How will your life end?
Resources: John R. Rice Study Bible; Jeff Adams – “Reality Living”, Greg Axe – “Galatians”, David Dykes -“Discover life Ministries”, Warren Wiersbe – Commentary; Sermon central Illustrations.
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A Study of Galatians: “Bewitched”

Legalism Liberty Sermon Series GRAPHIC
Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
Text: Galatians 2:21-3:1-5

INTRODUCTION: Paul is very concerned about their spiritual condition. He is so concerned that he has doubt about their true salvation. Here is why I say this:

NOTE: When Paul writes the Church at Corinth he addresses them as brothers and sisters in Christ and as “Saints in Corinth.” Now we know this church was full of problems and open sins. This letter doesn’t address these churches as saints. Paul was that concerned about their true spiritual condition.
Paul approaches this problem like a doctor who is trying to diagnose what is wrong with his patient. He asks (5) five questions to them in assessing or diagnosing their spiritual condition. He is looking to know two things. 1) Is what they have in Christ, real? 2) Are they growing in Christ?
* “Bewitched” = A wicked spiritual source is behind this false teaching.
I Timothy 4:1-2 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
Our enemy isn’t a false teacher but the devil himself. Listen to Martin Luther’s comments on this passage. Luther certainly knew a thing or two about false teachers and the wicked spirit that empowers them.
QUOTE: “Satan is clever. He does not only bewitch men in a crude manner, but also in a more artful fashion. He bedevils the minds of men with hideous fallacies. There is not one among us who is not at times seduced by Satan into false beliefs. The tricky devil can make a lie look like the truth. Since he has this uncanny ability to make us believe a lie until we would swear a thousand times it were the truth, we must not be proud, but walk in fear and humility, and call upon the Lord Jesus to save us from temptation.”
NOTE: Paul’s message to them was about their need of a “relationship” and not another “religion”. If religion was right, Paul in his earlier life was the best, but that wasn’t enough for Paul, so he came to Christ and a relationship was the reality of his life.
NOTE: God’s desire for us is not to be spiritual but to be biblical. There are a lot of things that are spiritual but not biblical, even wicked things.
Colossians 2:20-23 Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, (Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body: not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh.
Many like legalism because they want someone to tell them what they can or cannot do. But God wants to be the controller of our lives and He wants to control us with His Word and Spirit. That’s why here at DBC we don’t have a list of what our church believes. The issue is always, what does the Bible say?
* “evidently set forth” = these words mean publicly portrayed or announced on a poster. It means to put something on a poster and then put it in a public place.
Paul had so presented the message of the cross that they not only knew Christ died, but they could see it. It would have been like what we experienced when we saw the movie, “The Passion of the Christ”. Although Paul may not have seen the crucifixion, the Apostles told him every detail. Mentally, it was burned into their minds. Don’t ever forget what Christ did for you on the cross. That is exactly the purpose of the Lord’s Supper.
* Listen to how Paul began the letter:
Galatians 1:6-9 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
* The cross was the center of Paul’s preaching and Paul’s life.
I Corinthians 2:1-2 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.
The Holy Spirit is mentioned 18 times in this epistle because the Holy Spirit is the “REAL EVIDENCE” of true Biblical conversion. If you are truly saved, then the Holy Spirit lives in you.
Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
1. He convicts us of our sins: (John 16:7-11)
2. We can accept or reject the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives: (Acts 7:51)
3. If we accept, then we receive Christ and are born of the Spirit: (John 3:1-8)
4. We are then baptized into Christ’s body, the church, by the Holy Spirit:
(I Corinthians 12:12-14)
5. We are then sealed by the Holy Spirit as our guarantee to one day go to
Heaven: (Ephesians 1:13-14)
6. The Holy Spirit lives in us: (I Corinthians 6:19-20)
7. We now are to walk in the Spirit: (Galatians 5:16, 25)
8. If we disobey God, we grieve the Spirit: (Ephesians 4:30)
9. If we continue to grieve the Spirit, we quench the Spirit:
(I Thessalonians 5:19)
10. This doesn’t mean the Spirit will leave us because he has promised to abide
forever: (John 14:16; Hebrews 13:5)
11. Every day, we as believers, are filled (controlled by) the Spirit:
(Ephesians 5:18-21)
12. That filling is a continuous experience, like drinking water from a fresh
stream: (John 7:37-39)
NOTE: So, how did you get this wonderful gift of the Spirit? Did you get it by the work of the law or by the hearing of faith? You had this wonderful gift long before these false teachers showed up. WOW! This wonderful gift didn’t come by listening to man but by getting into the WORD and listening to God.
* “foolish” = all through the Bible, a fool is one who rejects the Word of God. He isn’t saying they aren’t smart or intelligent, he is saying they have been bewitched by these evil teachers and they are rejecting the Word of God.
* “flesh” = refers to our old nature not our human bodies.
FACT: We grow spiritually from faith to faith.
Romans 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
Faith comes from hearing the Word of God.
Romans 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
As we consistently hear and believe the word, we are growing from faith to faith. If we hear and believe the Word of God consistently, we grow in our faith and we grow from faith to faith. When we stop hearing and believing the Word, we stop growing.
* They began growing from faith to faith, then they stopped listening to the Word and to these false teachers and their growth stopped. Is that what they want?
ILLUSTRATION: Do you remember the first cell phones? They were the same size and weight as a brick. They were very bulky with a big rubber antenna. Now we have smart phones that we can carry in our pockets. These smart phones have more computing power in them that all the computing power in NASA when they put a man on the moon in 1969. Paul is saying “to set grace aside and go back to the law” would be like giving up our smart phones for the 1st cell phones made.
ILLUSTRATION: The difference between human performance and grace is the difference between a row boat and a sailboat. The row boat requires a lot of sweat and toil as you row the boat. Your strength is limited and if you get tired, you have to stop and rest. The sailboat however requires you to only hoist the sail and the wind fills the sail and moves you across the water. The New Testament word for Spirit is “pneuma” which means wind.
They had been bewitched into thinking that human effort and human goodness will get you to heaven. However, Paul had taught them that salvation and spiritual growth is the work of the Holy Spirit.
* “suffered” = is translated, experience. Have you experienced so many things in vain? The idea is their suffering/experiences were empty and of no worth.
NOTE: When they got saved they suffered because Christianity was considered a false cult. Many lost their jobs and were cut off from their families. Also the Romans wanted them to add Jesus to their list of gods and to worship all the Romans gods. But, the Christians knew not to worship other gods and that Christ was the “one true God”. Nero killed 1000s of Christians. But, when they took their stand for Christ they were empowered by the Holy Spirit and by identifying with Christ’s suffering.
ILLUSTRATION: The night I got saved I was so excited to tell my parents but they weren’t interested. When I kneeled by my bed to pray I was filled with God’s grace and presence. My suffering was compensated by Christ’s blessings in my life. What an experience!
I Peter 3:14 But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;
Suffering for Christ brings joy and blessings and compensates for our suffering.
*The “He” is God the Father. God wasn’t working His miracles through those trying to keep the law. He performed His miracles through faith in His Word. Biblical miracles came from obedience to the Word of God.
NOTE: All of Moses’ miracles came from obedience to the Word of God, every one of them.
All the miracles of Elijah and Elisha came from obedience to the Word of God.
The miracles of Jesus came from obeying His Word. Remember, the devil can perform miracles.
CONCLUSION: He asked five questions and their answers would without question prove they were saved by grace thru faith and not the works of the law.
STORY: Dwight L. Moody was a shoe salesman from Chicago who fell in love with Jesus and started sharing his faith with everyone he met. Even though he was never ordained or had formal training, God used him to reach thousands for Christ as an evangelist. There was a group of British pastors who were planning a crusade and the name of D. L. Moody came up as a possible preacher. One British pastor said with skepticism: “Why do we need this Mr. Moody? He’s unordained, uneducated, and inexperienced. Who does he think he is? Does he think he has a monopoly on the Holy Spirit?” But another, wiser pastor, who had heard D.L. Moody preach responded, “Mr. Moody doesn’t have a monopoly on the Holy Spirit, but the Holy Spirit has a monopoly on Mr. Moody.”

That’s a good question for each of us to ask: Does the Holy Spirit have a monopoly on me? Does He have a monopoly on my time, my priorities, and my treasure?

STORY: If you’ve ever flown into New York City, chances are you’ve heard of LaGuardia Airport. The airport is named after Fiorello LaGuardia, who was mayor of New York City from 1934 to 1945. LaGuardia was a colorful character and a “hands-on” mayor. He would show up at fires to give encouragement to the firemen. He often slipped into a municipal courtroom and take over the duties of the judge, since he was the chief magistrate.

During the depths of the depression, LaGuardia was presiding over a case where a woman wearing a tattered coat was brought before him and charged with stealing a loaf of bread. She explained that her daughter’s husband had abandoned her, leaving her with two hungry children, and she had stolen the bread for her starving grandchildren. The storekeeper refused to drop the charges. He said, “My store is in a real bad neighborhood, your honor, and she must be punished to teach other people in the neighborhood a lesson.”

LaGuardia sighed as he announced the verdict to the woman. He said, “I’ve got to punish you. The law is clear. Ten dollars or ten days in jail.” But as he was pronouncing the judgment he reached into his pocket and pulled out a ten-dollar bill and tossed it into his hat. He said, “Here is your fine, which I remit. And furthermore I’m going to fine everyone in this courtroom fifty cents for living in a town where a grandmother has to steal bread so her grandchildren can eat.”

He handed his hat to the bailiff and said, “Mr. Bailiff, collect the fines.” The next morning the newspaper reported that $47.50 was turned over to the woman, which included fifty cents from the storeowner. Some seventy petty criminals and NYC policemen also donated to the pot.

That’s a powerful picture of the gospel of God’s grace. Like that lady, we stand guilty before the judge; caught red-handed in our sin. A just God knows the penalty must be paid. Yet He is full of mercy. He stepped in and gave His most precious possession, His Son, to pay the penalty for our sins. But grace doesn’t end there. Not only does God pay our penalty, He showers us with the blessings of salvation, life in the Holy Spirit, which beats $47.50 any day!

So, don’t let the devil or some false teacher bewitch you. Salvation is by grace through faith, so don’t fall back into the trap of legalism.

Resources: John R. Rice Study Bible; Jeff Adams – “Reality Living”, Greg Axe – “Galatians”, David Dykes -“Discover life Ministries”, Warren Wiersbe – Commentary; Sermon central Illustrations.
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A Study of Galatians: “How to Live the Christian Life”

Legalism Liberty Sermon Series GRAPHIC

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
Text: Galatians 2:20
INTRODUCTION: If we are honest many of us struggle trying to live the Christian life. I think my “Church of God” background has in many ways caused a lot of my struggles. When you teach or have been taught that you can lose your salvation, you will find yourself trying to hang on to your relationship with God so you don’t lose it.
Today, I want to help you make a wonderful discovery, no matter what your religious background. Sort of like Columbus who was trying to get to India and ran into America. It was here all along, he just discovered what was here all along.
Here it is:
The Christian life is not me trying to live like Jesus. The Christian life is me allowing Jesus to live through me. He wants to live His life through me each and every day.
Let’s discover what has been here all along.
I. THE EXECUTED LIFE: “I am crucified with Christ.”
* We don’t die physically, but we die to ourselves and to sin. The cross symbolizes death. When Jesus died on the cross, two crucifixions took place. Christ was crucified for our sins and we were crucified with Christ.
* Paul didn’t say, I am being crucified or I will be crucified, he said I am crucified. It was something that had already happened. It happened 2,000 years ago and we need to accept that FACT. It isn’t something we did or are doing. He did it for us.
Colossians 3:2-3 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.
* If I brought a corpse up here and we began to tempt him to sin. If we confronted him with sex, booze, drugs, money, fame, stealing, cheating, lying, etc. he would not be affected because he is dead. We aren’t dead!
* If you parade that before us, it would be hard to not be affected. But the truth is, we are dead to sin’s power over us. Sin does not have power over us unless we allow it to.
* “We live in the world but we don’t let the world live in us.” Like a boat, it is in the water but the water isn’t in the boat. If water gets in the boat, it will sink.
Romans 6:11 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.
* “I reckon” = that is a good southern phrase. It literally means to count yourself or to consider yourself dead to sin but alive to Christ. Every day we need to consider this fact. Sin’s power over us was defeated at Calvary so I don’t have to yield to the temptations that will confront me today.
* Then Paul gives us the practical action we take to “reckon ourselves dead”.
Romans 6:12-13 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.
ILLUSTRATION: In a court of law the judge makes a ruling. That ruling becomes a reality in your life or you are held in contempt and go to jail. That ruling is a new reality in your life as you begin to live your life according to that ruling. God has ruled that we are no longer under the control of the devil and the power of sin. We have been set free.
John 8:36 If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.
I Corinthians 15:31b …I die daily.
STORY: When missionary James Calvert first approached the Fiji islands, which were populated by cannibals, the captain of the ship begged Calvert to turn around. He said, “If you go, you and all of those with you will die at the hands of those savages.” James Calvert said, “We died before we left.” He landed and they led thousands of those savages to faith in Christ.
* A.W.Tozer explained the crucified life like this: “1) A man on a cross is facing in only one direction; 2) He is not going back (goodbye to the past and past life); 3) He has no further plans of his own.”
* The secret to living the Christian life is dying to self. A sign in the window of a dry cleaning & dying business said, “We dye to live, we live to dye; the more we dye, the more we live; and the more we live, the more we dye.
II. THE EXCHANGED LIFE: “I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me.”
STORY: Five-year old Katie was taken to the pediatrician with the flu. The doctor examined Katie’s ears and to make her feel relaxed she said, “Will I find Big Bird in this ear?” Katie said, “No.” Before examining her throat the doctor asked, “Will I find the Cookie Monster in there?” Katie was getting a little impatient and said, “No.” The doctor placed the stethoscope on Katie’s chest and asked, “Will I find Barney in here?” Katie looked at the doctor and said with honest innocence, “No. Jesus is in my heart. Barney is on my underwear.”
Katie was right about that! Jesus can live in your heart. This is sometimes called, “the Exchanged Life.” Hudson Taylor, a pioneer missionary to China, made the term, “The Exchanged Life,” popular. He struggled for years trying to do the work for God, and finding nothing but failure. Then he discovered the key of death to self and the power of the indwelling Christ. He exchanged his weakness for the strength of Christ, and when he did God started doing amazing things through him.
* Christ “in” us is the game changer. Paul said this is a great mystery.
Colossians 1:27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
ILLUSTRATION: I am not real good at drinking water but if I add a packet of “
Crystal Light to it, I love it. Why? Because the Crystal Light changed everything. So with us, Christ in us changes everything. He changes our nature from tasteless to sweet and refreshing.
IMAGINE: Some of you ladies have no problem making exchanges. If it isn’t what you want you will exchange it and that is a good thing. Men just let it hang in the closet and never wear it. Let’s exchange what we don’t want or like or won’t wear for what we do.
Exchange our weakness for His strength; exchange our ignorance for His wisdom; exchange our guilt for His freedom; exchange our misery for His joy; exchange our anger for His gentleness; exchange our prejudice for His love; exchange my inability for His ability.
SONG: Thanks to Calvary:
“Thanks to Calvary I am not the man I used to be,
Thanks to Calvary things are different than before.”
III. THE ENERGIZED LIFE: “I live by the faith of the Son of God.”
* By now we all agree we can’t live the Christian life in our own energy, willpower or determination. We can only allow Jesus to live in and through us.
* For years one of my biggest failures has been Galatians 5:22-23. These nine qualities that I can’t ever seem to live up to.
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
Today I want you to know that we don’t have to live up to them. They are nine qualities that describe the personality of Jesus. I just need to allow Jesus to live in me and He energizes those qualities in my life.
* Paul identifies his source of energy.
Colossians 1:28-29 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working (energy), which worketh in me mightily.
ILLUSTRATION: As a young preacher I read, “In His Steps” by Charles Sheldon. It is a fictional account of a group of Christians who started asking themselves, what Jesus would do in the different situations they faced in life. Then they tried to do what Jesus would do. Now we have bracelets and car stickers and door stickers with the letters WWJD. Here is the fallacy of WWJD.
1) We assume we know what He would do in certain situations. Reality is Jesus always did the unexpected. He was full of surprises. It is always dangerous to elevate your personal opinion to the true standard of Christ.
2) We assume we can do what He did. Can we walk on water? Can we see inside a person? Do we know yesterday, today, and tomorrow? Can we raise the dead? Can we heal the sick? Can we cast out devils?
Here is a better alternative: WWJD = “What Will Jesus Do…when I surrender to His life living in me?” I don’t have to figure out anything, I just let Jesus live in and through me.
ILLUSTRATION: Use a glove to show how Christ wants to live His life through us. The glove is powerless, it is lifeless, it is incapable of doing anything. It is worthless until my hand goes into it. Then it come alive. There are so many things it can do because my hand is in it but without my hand, it is worthless.
Our lives will have new meaning, power and value when we let Christ live in and through us.
* “I live by the faith of the Son of God who loves me and gave himself for me.”
Adrian Rogers used to say, “Every morning he imagined the chair he was sitting in while doing his devotions to be an electric chair. While in his quiet time he hit the lever and threw the electric volts through the chair and reckoned himself dead. Then he only had one option and that was to allow Christ to live in him.
* Stuart Brisco told how he went through four stages before he understood that he was dead and Christ was alive in him.
1) I became a Christian and that was easy. I repented of my sins and asked Jesus to come into my heart. Easy.
2) I learned that Jesus had expectations of me and that was hard. It wasn’t as easy as I thought.
3) I then realized it was impossible. There was no way I could live up to those expectations.
4) I learned the secret of the Christian life, “Christ in you the hope of glory.” Wow, now I know it isn’t me and all my efforts, but Him living His life through me. How exciting is that?
Which stage are you in today?
Resources: John R. Rice Study Bible; Jeff Adams – “Reality Living”, Greg Axe – “Galatians”, David Dykes -“Discover life Ministries”, Warren Wiersbe – Commentary; Sermon central Illustrations.
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From Legalism to Liberty: “Born Free in Jesus”

Legalism Liberty Sermon Series GRAPHIC

Click here to watch this sermon while following along below!
Text: Galatians 2:1-14

INTRODUCTION: Although slavery as we know it from the past does not exist today, emotional slavery is very real today. It can be an abusive husband or wife or an abusive boss or an abusive church leader or pastor.

NOTE: God gave us the local church to help us grow up spiritually. He gave us spiritual leaders to help nourish us in the Lord. But church leaders and pastors are limited in their influence. Our job is to teach you what the Bible says, but it is up to you, how you use what you are taught. We don’t have the authority to run your life, that responsibility is yours.
NOTE: Legalism is where people teach you must:
1) Do certain things to be saved.
2) Do certain things in order to be spiritual.
3) These things are artificial, man made things and not Biblical truths.
*Paul was concerned that false teachers were coming in and telling them (new believers) that they must become Jews in order to be saved. They must be circumcised, keep the dietary laws and keep the Sabbath in order to be saved.
*Paul wants to protect them from such false teachers. When they were born-again they were set free so they could please God with their lives. We were born in sin but when we were born-again in Jesus, we were born free.
*Let’s FAST FORWARD past the 1st Missionary Journey and go to the account in Acts 15 when Paul and Barnabas go up to Jerusalem to deal with the matter. The church at Jerusalem had heard about all these Gentiles being converted and so false brothers had taken it on themselves to go and make Jews out of the new Gentile Christians.
Acts 15:1-6 And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question. And being brought on their way by the church, they passed through Phenice and Samaria, declaring the conversion of the Gentiles: and they caused great joy unto all the brethren. And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God had done with them. But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses. And the apostles and elders came together for to consider of this matter.
* Paul took them aside individually (privately). He didn’t cause a scene or get in folks’ faces. He went to those who 1) could help fix the problem, 2) were spiritual enough to know the Word and sensitive in the leading of the Holy Spirit, 3) had the proper influence over the believers in Jerusalem, 4) He gives them a full report of the facts without all the emotions.
* (Acts 15:3-4) Paul could have gotten his crowd to go to Jerusalem with him. That would have made a horrible scene with emotions running wild.
*The truth had to be defended but how Paul handled that truth was just as important. If Paul had divided the crowd it would have really been bad.
FACT: Not everyone is where you are spiritually or where you are in Biblical learning. So work with those who are and be gracious to those who aren’t there yet.
God deals with us graciously so give some grace. Don’t compromise truth but choose your battles wisely.
Acts 15:19-20 Wherefore my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the Gentiles are turned to God: But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood.
* The real issue didn’t get lost in emotional blow-ups or personal prejudices but with a clear head the truth for unity was decided.
* “revelation” = Paul’s message was radical to their Jewish ears. Jesus was saving Gentiles just like He was saving Jews and both are part of His body the church.
*The Major issue here is “circumcision”. Historically circumcision was given to that Jew in order for him to identify with God’s chosen people. So every male was circumcised on the 8th day.
*Here is the problem, they were so focused on the physical circumcision they were ignoring the spiritual circumcision. Long before Paul wrote Colossians God had told these Jews that the physical circumcision was to be a picture of their spiritual circumcision of the heart.
Deuteronomy 10:16 Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiffnecked.
Jeremiah 4:4 Circumcise yourselves to the Lord, and take away the foreskins of your heart, ye men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem: lest my fury come forth like fire, and burn that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings.
* So when Paul writes in Colossians, it isn’t a new revelation from God but a reminder of what God had intended all along.
Colossians 2:11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:
NOTE: Paul knew what he believed and he didn’t give in, “not even for an hour”. Some translations say, “not even for a moment”.
*Paul had Titus who was a Gentile with him and even though some (Acts 15:5) said he had to be circumcised Paul refused. He stood his ground. Titus was a Gentile who was born-again in Christ and that was enough.
NOTE: In Acts 16, Timothy joins Paul’s team and the 1st thing Paul does is circumcise him (V. 3). Is this a double standard? No! Timothy was half Jew and half Gentile and because of his Jewish blood Paul circumcised him, but Titus had no Jewish blood. Paul wasn’t going to allow Timothy’s Jewish blood to become a stumbling block to reaching the Jews.
NOTE: (V. 4) “False Brethren” = those who were like “tares among the wheat”, who were planted by satan to “spy out their liberty”, and bring these new believers who were Gentiles under bondage. They wanted to require their man made rule upon these new believers.
Galatians 2:4 And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage:
Issues Change Over Time: In the time of Christ, the big issue was keeping the Sabbath. They followed our Lord around just looking for the opportunity to condemn him over the Sabbath rules.
EXAMPLES: I remember when there was so much attention placed on dress and hair. The length of a man’s hair made him spiritual or not spiritual. If a woman wore pants she was considered not spiritual.
STORY: This church was very legalistic when I became your pastor. Katy and I were invited over to a family’s home for dinner. Three other couples joined us. So there were four couples. Three of the ladies did not wear pants. They informed me their husbands didn’t see a problem with them wearing pants but God had shown them it was sin. Now here was the problem. My wife wore pants (but not to dinner that night). All eyes were on this new young pastor. What would I say? I asked two questions.
1) Where were you when God told you it was a sin to wear pants? All three of them were in a 7 day, 12 hour a day camp meeting where they heard it preached over and over again. (I would have stopped wearing pants just to get some relief).
2) Why did you not follow your husbands as your spiritual leader?
Here is the rest of the story! Katy and I corrupted them and two of the women started wearing pants and the other family changed churches.
Bottom Line: You have to know what this Book says and then stand firm on the Word of God. That is why Discipleship is so important.
* “conference” = idea of seeming to be important. It is the idea of wanting to look or seem important to those who meet them. They didn’t impress Paul. You must remember the man who wants to please God above everything else in this life, is not a man who is caught up in appearances and people pleasing.
NOTE: There is no doubt that Paul respected the leaders in Jerusalem but he wasn’t intimidated by them. He knew his relationship with Christ was solid and he knew what God had shown him in the Word and he is going to obey God.
FACT: We are all facing battles.
I Corinthians 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
All of us are struggling and growing and face the same problems and challenges. No one has arrived. We all struggle to be more like Jesus.
Galatians 6:3 For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.
Don’t let anyone deceive you and especially don’t deceive yourself. God can work in your life just like He works in other’s lives.
*Biblical leaders deserve our respect but they are never given the liberty to intimidate.
FACT: Insecure leaders, not secure leaders, use intimidation to try and control the weak. Don’t allow it to happen.
1) They pull the seniority card. I was here before you came and will be here when you’re gone.
2) They get in your face…
3) They get loud…
4) They present themselves as superior in knowledge, experience, etc.
“Mature Bible Leaders Lead by Example and the Word.”
I Corinthians 11:1 Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.
NOTE: Some translations say, “Be ye imitators” of me. This is a horrible translation. The greatest imitator in this world is the devil. Don’t imitate me, don’t imitate Christ, follow Christ, and follow me if I am following Christ.
TRUTH: Following Biblical leaders doesn’t mean they control you and respecting Biblical leaders doesn’t mean you are intimidated by them.
* Paul’s fruit could not be denied. Just as Peter’s fruit among the Jews was undeniable, so was Paul’s among the Gentiles.
* God was all over Paul in saving Gentiles and Paul wasn’t circumcising them and trying to make Jews out of them.
IDEA: If someone doesn’t do everything just like us or believe everything just like us, then they must be wrong. Know where you are ministering and know who you are in Christ and produce fruit. No one can deny fruit.
ILLUSTRATION: I have had people say, “I don’t present the plan of salvation like you do?” Ok! How is your way producing fruit?
In the Philippines years ago, they had contemporary music. I was so against contemporary music until I saw that God blessed (gave fruit) and they sang contemporary music.
STORY: Someone sent me this funny email: Some time ago I came upon a fellow who was on the edge of a bridge. He looked as if he was ready to jump. I ran over and grabbed him by the hand to see if I could save him. I said, “Are you believer in Jesus Christ?” “Yes!” he said, “But I don’t have anyone to fellowship with.” I was wondering if I have something in common with him, so I started asking him some questions. “I’ve learned that you can’t be too careful. Do you believe in the Virgin Birth?” I asked. “I accept it.” “Deity of Jesus?” “No doubt.” Could it be that I was face to face with a fellow believer? Perhaps. So I continued my checklist. “Bodily resurrection of Christ?” “Absolutely!” Status of man?” “Sinners in need of grace.” “The Bible?” “Totally inspired with no error.” I was getting excited. “Conservative or liberal?” He was getting excited too. “Conservative.” My heart began to beat faster. “Denomination?” He smiled and said, “Southern Congregationalist Holy Son of God Dispensational Triune Convention.” That was mine! “What branch?” “Pre-millennial, non-charismatic, King James, one-cup Communion.” My eyes misted over. We had so much in common! I asked one more question. “Is your pulpit wooden or fiberglass?” “Fiberglass,” he responded. I withdrew my hand and walked away as I said, “Go ahead and jump, you heretic!”
*We don’t have to do everything alike but we do have to produce fruit and fruit comes from walking with Christ.
John 15:4-5 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
* Legalists don’t bear fruit. They spend all their time and energy trying to get people to conform to be like them.
Let’s begin by looking at a couple words in our text:
(V. 13) “dissembled” = means they withdrew themselves
(V. 13) “dissimulation” = means hypocrisy
(V. 14) “compellest” = means to force
(V. 14) “walked not uprightly” = Greek word is “ortho” (straight) “podia” (foot) = where we get our word Orthopedics. His walk wasn’t lining up. His walk was dislocated.
NOTE: Peter had gone down before the Acts 15 meeting to see what was going on in Antioch and he saw the blessings of God. This church had to be excited that Peter was in their midst. This is the guy who “walked on water”, “saw Lazarus raised”, “Preached on Pentecost”, “prayed and God raised Dorcas from the dead.” Wow! He is here. He is a rock star.
REMEMBER: Peter had never been in a Gentile home until his Acts 10 experience and God had really worked on him.
NOW: He is really enjoying this new freedom with the Gentiles. He is eating pork and loving it. Until these VIPs from Jerusalem came down. He had not yet learned to not be intimidated. So our text indicated that:
1) He withdrew himself and made a separation of the Jews and Gentiles.
2) He told them to get the “unclean food” away from them and get rid of it.
3) It is clear this wasn’t a suggestion but Peter took over and forced this.

4) The Jewish Christians followed his lead and the Gentile Christians were confused.

5) He is two-faced. He caves to fear and now his walk doesn’t line up with the “Gospel.”
6) He has even influenced Barnabas with this hypocrisy, over the truth of the Gospel.
NOW: Paul steps in with the Confrontation. Peter accepts the confrontation. Had Paul kept silent the legalizers would have been able to push their agenda. Paul is speaking the truth in love.
1) He confronted him publically because the sin was public. Private sin can be dealt with privately but public sin must be dealt with publically because then it affects others.
2) He confronted him gently. Paul didn’t blow up and get in his face and cause a scene. Paul simply asked Peter a question. It wasn’t Paul’s job to fix Peter. It was Paul’s job to point out Peter’s inconsistency between his beliefs and his behavior.
3) He protected the truth of the Gospel. We are free in Christ from the laws of man and free to live by the laws of God.
NOTE: Paul knew how to do this correctly!
Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
CONCLUSION: STORY: A man was sitting at a traffic light behind another car. The light turned green, but the driver in the first car didn’t go because he was distracted looking at a map. The guy behind him waited a few seconds and then tapped his horn. The first driver still didn’t move, so the guy behind him laid on his horn. By the time the driver in the first car looked up, the light had turned red again.
The fellow in the second car was so angry that he started pounding his steering wheel. He rolled down his window and shook his fist at the guy in front of him and yelled, “You stupid jerk! Are you blind? Green means go, you old fool!” The angry driver didn’t notice a policeman parked next to the intersection. The policeman approached the second car and asked the driver to step out of the vehicle and show him his driver’s license. The guy said, “You can’t arrest me for yelling at that jerk!” The policeman escorted him to the back seat of the police car, and asked him to wait. After a few minutes on his radio, the policeman returned and said, “Okay, you can return to your car.” By this time the guy was really mad. He said, “I know my rights! You can’t arrest me for getting mad. Why did you take me out of my car? You haven’t heard the last of this!” The policeman said, “I didn’t detain you because you were hollering. I couldn’t help but notice you had a little wooden cross hanging from your mirror and a bumper sticker that said, “Jesus is coming soon.” I assumed this car belonged to a Christian. So when I saw the way you were acting I suspected that you had stolen this car.” Ouch!
Resources: John R. Rice Study Bible; Jeff Adams – “Reality Living”, Greg Axe – “Galatians”, David Dykes -“Discover life Ministries”, Warren Wiersbe – Commentary.
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