Pastor Knight's Blog

Posted in Uncategorized by jameshknight on November 15, 2015

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Preach The Word Part 1

2Ti 4:1,2 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

Preaching The Word of God

In the day and age in which we live there is a great and growing need for the preaching of the word of God. There is a great deal of preaching going on to be sure, but very rare is the man who will preach the whole counsel of God’s word. Too many are worried about the possibility of losing the crowd or even being asked to leave the church if they take a stand on the word of God. God help us to be willing to stand in the face of opposition. There is a greater reward that awaits faithfulness than we could ever receive from our fellow man here in this life. It is time to search our own hearts, to call upon God, and to prayerfully seek and preach that which He would have us too; And this, in spite of adversity. God help us to make up our minds to do so.

There was a young man who had not long surrendered to preach the gospel. He sought advice from many older men of God as to how to execute the office to which God had called him. One of the men told him to be prepared for the worst that men had. He said, “Twenty years ago people wanted to hear preaching, real preaching. People expected to be told how to live when a man of God stood up. Now they are doing just what Paul wrote to Timothy about. They are ‘enduring’ sound doctrine. The time is soon coming that they will no longer ‘endure’ and they will heap to themselves teachers having itching ears.” This preacher advised the younger preacher to be prepared to work a job for the rest of his life because he did not believe that churches would be willing to support a full-time pastor in the near future. This seems to be the case in most quarters.

Now, ten years later, it is just as the older preacher said. “Churches are not going to want anyone who will stand.” Sadly enough, the “endurance” is about gone. Churches are heaping to themselves teachers having itching ears. However, all seem to have itching ears. The majority of church members have ears that itch for the “feel-good” non-offensive preaching of our modern day pulpiteers which is ringing across the airwaves and from the pulpits across our nation. And most preachers are plagued with ears that itch for praise from the people that they preach too, as well a palms that itch for the rewards for their feel-good sermonettes. One deacon in particular actually told his pastor that there is no need to preach in the mid-week service but to give a short “sermonette” and let everyone go home. Not long after that meeting the pastor was told that the church was not going to follow him and he was asked to leave. It is time to dig in, prepare for the fight and preach. Preach the whole counsel of God as we are commanded. Preach the Word of God in it’s entirety. Teach our people how to live. And if you have to suffer being chased away, then leave with the satisfaction of knowing that you have done what God has called you to do. Leave with dignity and pity those who have abused you. It is going to get worse before the Lord returns. Look again at what Paul said to Timothy…..

I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

…and take heart to do what God would have you too. It may not always feel good, but it is right.

“I Charge Thee”

Paul was not simply advising Timothy to preach. He was commanding him to preach. When he said that he “charged” him, he was telling him that he was placing a great responsibility upon his shoulders. Paul was placing a great burden on this man Timothy; and that before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, the Judge of the quick and the dead. This is no small matter to be entered into because of a simple desire. It is a command to be met with a determination that cannot be swayed. A man of God can not escape the desire to preach the word of God. Paul said “woe unto me if I preach not the gospel.” Jeremiah said that when he made up his mind to be silent, the word of God was as a fire in his bones. If a man has any preach in him then he must preach.

Posted in Uncategorized by jameshknight on November 4, 2015

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Bring Back The Good Old Days

When:

Sunday meant going to church.

I remember as a boy that my grandmother would get all of her grandchildren together and walk us to church. She could not get her children to go, but no one had the courage to disrespect grand-maw and tell her that she couldn’t take the grandchildren. I believe that if they had, there would not have been a second time. She was a good woman who did good for all and too all that she came in contact with. My grandmother loved people, and she loved her community, but overwhelmingly loved her family. Most of the children in our little town know her as another of their own grandmothers. We will never know, in this lifetime, all the good that she did or all of the lives that she touched in her walk here. Most of all, I am grateful to her that she took us to church every time the doors were open. My grandfather was a drunk, and a calloused, hard man in those days, he would not let her use his vehicle or his gas to go to church. He saw no use in wasting his possessions in such a way. But, rain or shine, maw- maw, as we called her, herded her little brood of grandchildren to church. I remember my wife’s face once when I was preaching and in town and a lady came up to me and spoke of what a good friend my grandmother was: and she spoke of how she used to watch as we were all walked to church down the road in front of her house, rain or shine. My wife realized then that I was not exaggerating the story. My grandmother remembered that when she was a child Sunday meant going to church. We walked to church many times in the rain or the snow, and in the sweltering humidity of the summer heat of Northeast Mississippi.

She grew up in a day, and many of our church members remember these times, that a person may have had only one pair of shoes. Your shoes were for school or church and that was all. Everywhere else you went barefoot. Most folks had two suits of clothes; One for every day and every place, the other was their Sunday-go-to-meeting suit. They were special, and were for a special day, Sunday. There was no wondering what they were going to be doing on Sunday morning. Everyone knew they were going to church. It meant something to go to church. It also meant something when a person was not at church.

In our day, the generation that is, for the most part, raising kids has the attitude that church is something that you do when you have nothing else to do. My generation has raised a generation shoving them on a bus to go to church, if they sent them. But rare is it to find families in our day of my age group that attend church together. It is no wonder that the nation has turned from God. The question is often raised. “Is America a Christian nation?” Well, I may emphatically say no, not if you go by what you see. There was a time that she was. That simply means that most of her population was Christian and tried to live like it. Today that is not the case. We have a generation that is religious but not saved. Today we are surrounded by people who call themselves Christian because they claim to believe a certain thing or two. They have a form of Godliness yet they deny the power thereof. America has gone so far away from God that she has become an anti-Christian nation. The only religions that are being restricted in the public performance of their rites, practices or demonstration of their beliefs are those that are built upon a faith in the Holy Bible as the Word of God. Even our national holidays are being taken from us. Was America built as, and intended to be a Christian nation? If you will look at our national holidays, you can see the obvious answer to this question. Christmas is a day set aside to celebrate the birth of the Precious Son of God. Easter is a day set aside to celebrate the death the burial and the resurrection of the Son of God. Thanksgiving was set aside to fast and pray and give thanks to the God of Heaven who had prospered the early settlers. There was once a law in most of our country that businesses shut down on Sunday. That hellish liquor could not be sold on Sunday. Once upon a time, Wed. night prayer service was a time that school activities and sports were prohibited so that people could be in church. Businesses once closed early so that employees could be at church. Today, because big money and politics talk, nothing is any longer sacred. Not even the fact that there IS a God and He is real. Is He real? Only God could have known thousands of years before man made the discovery that the world was round, it says so in His book. That the earth hangs on nothing in space, it says it in His book. Only God knew that every star was different, is was written in His book before the astronomers ever figured it out. Only God could have known thousands of years ago that there were “paths” or currents in the seas. It was written in His book thousands of years before they were discovered. And only God would have been able to know that if Abraham had not waited eight days to circumcise his son Isaac, the child would have bled to death. God knew and had his word written down with men never knowing why until my own life time. I will say that America was once a Christian nation. And should be again. The fact that God’s book proves Himself is reason enough that we should be allowed to continue with our worship. I do not believe in violent action to carry the word of God. But what God called sin thousands of years ago, is still sin today. What was abomination to God thousands of years ago, is still abomination today. Prayer is “commanded” by God, not simply allowed. Homosexuality is condemned by God, not simply disapproved of. Sodomy is still against the law in most of our nation even today and we have laws on the books now protecting those who practice it. And I personally don’t believe in atheism. It is a lie. All men know that there is a God, there are simply many who choose to deny Him in rebellion to the very soul that lives within them. I do not choose to require anyone who does not believe as I do to prove their beliefs to me. I do not feel that we as Christians should continually be required to state our beliefs. It is no new story. It is the oldest story known to man. Jesus Christ, the Second Person of the Godhead, created all things. He made man, watched man throw it all away, and then gave Himself to die on a cross to give man the chance to come back to God. God loved you so much that He showed that He would rather die than see you go to hell. I think we all owe it to Him to read His book and find out how He feels about some things. I am a Christian, I will live by the book. Everyone else has to make their own choice. To be otherwise minded would make me a hypocrite. Read the book, cover to cover, and you may begin to understand why Christians feel the way they do. Don’t be a hypocrite, as most preachers are today, and try to preach what you are not familiar with. If I must continue to study secular history, and philosophy, poetry, the sciences, and other religions in order to preach accurately. Then others should read the book that I live by to try and understand what I preach. Want to learn of God and what the Word of God says? Get to church. The average community in America doesn’t have a thimble full of bible knowledge in it. Yet everyone is willing to make a fool of them selves arguing over the truth because they have kept themselves ignorant and can’t recognize it. People don’t go to church, don’t read and certainly won’t be quiet long enough to listen therefore they can’t know.

Bring back the good old days, when Sunday meant going to church. At least there, most people will listen, even if they don’t like it. At least there a preacher can speak without a great deal of interruption. It is usually only in the pulpit that a preacher can actually finish a statement and show you exactly what he is trying to say. When people did go to church regularly at least most were familiar enough with some of the word of God to be honest in their daily lives about what is right and what is wrong. And that because they got off their behinds and got to church so they could hear the preaching of the word of God.

Posted in Uncategorized by jameshknight on November 4, 2015

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Daniel 3:16-18

“If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy Gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.”

I know that it seems like things are looking bad. In reality, here on earth, they do look bad for the near future….

Christianity is being persecuted,

The Bible is under constant attack,

Devilish teachings are being defended and protected,

And ungodly practices are being allowed,

For years we have known that the time of the Lord’s return has been close, and with every day that passes that seems more clear. And for years we have known that the church is going to see persecution in the last days.

In 2 Timothy 3:1 we read that in the last days “perilous times shall come.” And in verse 12 of that same chapter we read that all that will live godly in Christ Jesus “shall suffer persecution.” These days are upon us all over the world. It is getting progressively worse and it is quickly becoming dangerous but we have got to remember that we are not alone. As far as this world and it’s hatred of the Church, God, and the Bible; and the persecution of God’s people, we ain’t seen nothing yet. And as far as life and our relationship to God and His blessings on us, that is another area where we ain’t seen nothing yet.

You can just hang on honey because if you’re a child of God the best is yet to come. We have got a better home waiting for us and it’s not gonna be long before the Lord comes back for us and we bid this world goodbye. And when it looks bad just remember He promised us….

“I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.” John 14:18

With these thoughts in mind, I want to remind you that according to the teaching of the word of God, History does repeat itself.

“there is no new thing under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 1:9

What God’s people have suffered, we shall suffer again, there is no escaping it and the church has done the same thing that Israel did many times through the Old Testament. As Israel turned away from God, so has the church in our time: Especially in America. We have enjoyed the blessings of God and we have turned away from God. Historically, when God’s people turn away, they are judged, chastised and turned back to God in repentance. This cycle has begun in America. And we need to understand that one of two things is going on…..

…..either God is about to judge, chastise and purge the church, or Jesus is about to come back for the church and take us out of this world. Either way, it is probably going to get worse before it gets better. This brings us to our text in Daniel 3 again.

Dan 3:16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter.

Dan 3:17 If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.

Dan 3:18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

We see these men are surrounded by their enemies, outnumbered, seemingly alone, and still they stood for God. They stood out in the crowd here when the ungodly and unfaithful were bowed, even among their own countrymen. Not doubt, as the church is today, there were many Jews in the land with them that were brought captive from Jerusalem, and they had families and houses in Babylon and they were obviously willing to go along with things in Babylon without protest. Yet these three stood. And because they stood they stood out. Do you know why so few Christians stand out today? It is because so few are standing. You are an odd-ball if you are willing to stand for what is right in our day. You are an outcast and labeled as a trouble maker if you will stand against wickedness and sin. But we must learn to stand as these men did, and trust God to take care of the outcome. They exercised faith in a faithless generation. They showed faithfulness with no regard of the outcome to themselves, and they would not turn away from the God of heaven for the world or for their own safety.

They believed God and His word and would stand faithfully trusting God to reward their faithfulness. That is one of the greatest problems of our day. Very few people who claim to be Christian know anything of God’s written word. People don’t know what to stand for or against because they are not being taught and they are not willing to read the word of God for themselves. These men knew God and were familiar with His word and were willing to stake their all on it. Because they knew God’s word, they knew they could trust Him. Therefore they stood.

These men were definitely not the only Jews that had been brought forth to Babylon by the king: Many who were Jewish by birth, by practice, and in name, were there with them in the captivity. And many were exactly what we just said, Jewish in name only. That same problem is prevalent in Christianity in America today. Too many professors of the faith that don’t even know what they profess. There are too many that are claiming to be Christians that have been taught a sweet, pacifist, liberal, and weak religious system of beliefs that has no teeth or backbone. And they will not stand for or against anything except true Christianity. If you claim to be a Christian and you will not stand against wickedness and what is wrong, you are nothing. If you won’t stand for or against “something” then you have “nothing.” Face it. If you can’t stand against what God’s word teaches against then you don’t have anything from God. Read the book that God gave us to live by. You will, to the shock and amazement of the religious world, find that God is a wrathful and righteous judge of sin and wickedness. You will also find that there are some people that God hates. Think not? Then you don’t know and have not read the book. Don’t try to tell me what it says if you have never read it. I will continue to stand on that book, if you won’t, then you have nothing to stand on. Good luck in your fall.

These men were the only ones persecuted. Out of all the hundreds of thousands of Jews in Babylon, these three were cast into the fire. Where were all the others? Where were the faithful? The same place they are today: Hiding like cowards that didn’t have enough of God to help them stand. Guess what, if what you have won’t help you stand, then it probably won’t get you into heaven. Think about it. And who persecuted them? The very king that had just recently thought so much of them did. That is just like the world, if you will just quietly let them do what they please and go along with the crowd, you will be loved and accepted. The moment a Christian says, “wait a minute now, this is going too far, this is wrong,” that world that you are working so hard to stay friendly with is going to turn on you and want to get rid of you at all costs.

Are you a Christian? Try learning what God’s word says, then trying standing on that. If you are not willing, then don’t try and tell someone else what is wrong or right, because you are willingly ignorant already. Trying to tell someone else how to do something just because you have a preference is just a ridiculous as calling yourself a Christian and not trying to live like one.

Posted in Uncategorized by jameshknight on October 28, 2015

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As we begin another day let’s make our minds up that we are going to live for God from the start. Start the day with prayer. Start out the morning mindful of God, His blessings, His word, and His promises. Most of us never even think about God until someone else says something or does something that goes against what we claim to believe and love. Yes we are to be always ready to give an answer for what we believe, for that hope which we have but that is not supposed to be what we live for. I see on facebook so many people who are quick to respond to wickedness and lies and yet their responses betray their own complete lack of knowledge of the bible. While at the same time I see truth attacked in the name of God and with the misuse of scriptue or simply a total lack of knowing what the bible says. If you don’t know what the bible says keep quiet. Read the book that God wrote and you will begin to know and understand Him better. Get to know the word of God if you are a Christian. Start at Genesis 1 and read all the way through Revelation 22. Once you do, you begin again, and again, and again. This is part of the life of a child of God. If you are not willing to do this, then don’t take it upon yourself to educate the world on theological issues. Just stick to what you know. And, know this…..If you are claiming to be a Christian and you don’t have a desire to know God and His word better, maybe all you are doing is claiming to be a Christian.

Audio Uploaded 20 February 2015

Posted in Uncategorized by jameshknight on February 20, 2015

I hope this message is a blessing, it is truth.  May stir up some anger, may hurt some feelings, but no reaction at all is the greatest disappointment. Please listen if you get the opportunity.  WE NEED THIS!!!

Another Generation Bro. James H. Knight

Latest audio message upload, hope it is a blessing. “The Beginning of the End”

Posted in Uncategorized by jameshknight on June 2, 2013

Latest audio message upload, hope it is a blessing. “The Beginning of the End”

Comparing the present state of America to Israel’s in the time of Elisha.

Nehemiah 1:1-4

Posted in Uncategorized by jameshknight on May 19, 2013

 

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Nehemiah 1:1-4

1:1 The words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah. And it came to pass in the month Chisleu, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the palace,

1:2 That Hanani, one of my brethren, came, he and certain men of

Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews that had escaped,

which were left of the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem.

1:3 And they said unto me, The remnant that are left of the captivity

there in the province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall

of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned

with fire.

1:4 And it came to pass, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned certain days, and fasted, and prayed before the God of heaven,

 

The story of Nehemiah begins about ten to eleven years after Ezra has gone to Jerusalem and rebuilt the temple.  We know that the place of worship has been rebuilt, and that God’s law has been read  in the ears of the people, and their religious practice has been reinstituted.  And now, though the temple has  been rebuilt, the city is still unprotected.  The walls broken down and the gates burned with fire leaves  God’s house unguarded, unprotected, and vulnerable to infiltration, or attack. 

 

 

 

When Nehemiah hears of this terrible situation, it stirs him to tears to think of what he loves, what he longs for, being in such danger, and the people that he loves going through hard times and severe discrimination and abuse. He was heartbroken.

 

When we look at this we should remind ourselves of the truth that the house of God is vulnerable today.  Our churches are under attack.  Most often the attacks come from within.  When compromise takes place in the doctrinal stand of a church, the enemy has a way in.  God’s word and His statutes  are a wall about us to protect us and our worship.  We must see, when we look around us that something is terribly wrong with what the world is being shown as Christianity today.  Too much has been neglected.  Too many subjects are being avoided today for the sake of not offending anyone.  In truth, you can not be honest without offending someone. 

 

It should break our hearts to see the shape that the Church is in, just as it broke the heart of Nehemiah to hear of Jerusalem’s condition.

 

The result of a breakdown in adherence to the written word of God is trouble in the lives of God’s people.  As the years have passed we have seen this.  Honestly, if God’s people had taken a stand years ago,

 

-prayer would never have been taken out of school,

-abortion would never have been legalized,

-grade-school children would not be receiving prophylactics from government backed programs,

– sex education would not be taught in our schools,

-evolution would have been laughed out of existence,

-creationism would still be the accepted doctrine as to the origin of man and the universe,

-homosexuality would still be seen as a horrible and heinous sin against God and against nature,

 

and the list goes on and on.

 

Because of compromise concerning the word of God, we are now seeing the vulnerability of those who are still trying to stand for truth in a world that has left truth in the shadows of the past.  If you stand up for what is right, you will be mocked, insulted, excluded, spoken against, accused of being unwilling to forgive, unloving, and an extremist.

 

The wall, today, is broken down, and the gates are burned with fire.  And we are under constant attack.  Our first act should be to begin rebuilding with a resolve that will not be shaken, to restore the Church to the place that she was before.  We must rebuild the wall by choosing afresh to stand upon the written word in the face of any and all who would oppose it.

 

The big question is this…..  Where do we start?

 

Nehemiah shows us this in verses 4-5…He called on God.  He went to praying.  And notice how he prayed.  When he called on God the first thing that he did was repent.  He went right to repenting on behalf of himself and the nation.

 

Then in verses 8-9 he claims the promise that God had made to His people.

 

And in verses 10-11 he made his petition to God.

 

Nehemiah already knew what he had it in his heart to do, God already knew the desires of this man’s heart.  But only God could make it happen, and Nehemiah recognized that and sought God’s help.

 

Then all that Nehemiah could do was wait on God.

 

We know that our nation is not following the God that made her the greatest nation in the history of the earth outside of Israel.  We know that morality is almost nonexistent here today.  We know that we need to get back to the word of God as a nation.  How do we do it?   Just as Nehemiah did, recognize the problem,  allow ourselves to be heartbroken over the situation, repent, claim that promise of God’s help, ask God, and watch for the opportunity to make a difference.  But first of all, get to praying.

 

“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”

 

2Ch 7:14  If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

“Trouble”

Posted in christian, Christianity, commentary, consersative Christian, exposition, Opinion, religion, studies by jameshknight on February 3, 2013

Forgiveness and Forgiving

Posted in christian, Christianity, commentary, consersative Christian, exposition, Opinion, religion, studies by jameshknight on November 24, 2012

Matthew 6:8-15

Repentance. Prerequisite to Forgiveness

Focus on “and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.”  Verse 12.

“For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly father will also forgive you: but if you will not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your father forgive your trespasses.”  Verses 14, 15.

            Before us is an easy-to-understand lesson in Christian living.  It’s not any different than I have heard all my life.  Being from a small town in the hills of northeast Mississippi, I’ve always heard a lot of old fashioned terminology and old sayings. They used to be universally believed, but now those old sayings seem to be limited to a few small country towns, just plain country wisdom.  I’m sure that you’ve heard the old saying “what goes around comes around.”  My friend, I believe that with all my heart.  Does not the Bible teach us that to be forgiving us to be forgiven?  That is clearly implied by the text before us.  The Bible also tells us that “with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.”  And even more, the word of God teaches us that for a man to have friends he must first show himself friendly.  These all show us that there may be more to that old saying than what we may previously have believed.

            There are some things that, if you will, but give, they will come back to you manifold more than you gave.  Love someone else and you will have blessed all that love them and you will be loved by many.  Help someone else financially and you help all who are concerned with them, and one day when you are in need, you will receive help in return.  Be kind and you will be shown kindness in return.  Show yourself, friendly, and others will be friendly to you.  There are things that have definite returns.  Be willing to forgive, and you will be willingly forgiven.

            Forgiving, however, is very often, well, most often, misunderstood.  Forgiving is an attitude, a desire, a willingness to forgive.  That is what we speak of.  We discussed forgiving, or being forgiving.  We are commanded to be willing to forgive.  One way that the love of God is manifested through his children is their forgiving spirit.  It is a willingness; even a desire within us to forgive those who have hurt or offended us.  We want to forgive, otherwise bitterness can grow to monstrous proportions within our hearts, we will become unforgiving, if we do not practice forgiving.  That’s plain common sense.

            The problem arises somewhere about here.  Everyone seems to be familiar with these words, commanding us to forgive.  Most people are familiar also with the Word of God telling us that love covers the multitude of sins.  We find most of the church now, in a state of confusion over forgiveness.  Many Christians, I mean, saved, born-again, blood bought, children of God have come to expect forgiveness because they know there’s supposed to be love in the heart of the fellow Christians.  Because we are commanded by God to love and forgive, we take it for granted.  This is one of the things that has made us such a dead mess in the church in our day.   Does that seem to be a bit strong?  The church, as a whole, has lost all concept of the vast difference between being forgiving and forgiveness.  As before stated, to be forgiving is an attitude, a desire, a will to do;  Forgiveness is a completely different ball game.

            Forgiveness is a gift:  It is an act, an action.  It is putting in motion a forgiving attitude.  Forgiveness must be given.  Now back to the misconception of the majority of men.  Forgiveness is something that is taken for granted these days and is never asked for.  This accounts for the great lack of forgiveness in our churches.  The problem is not an unwillingness in the hearts of Christians to forgive, but a lack of repentance.  We are grown so hard and cold in our day; so used to doing what we want, when we want, where we want, how we want, with whom we want, that we don’t even think about the fact that there is a requirement upon us to repent when we have done wrong.  Oh yes, we know we’re supposed to forgive, we know others are supposed to forgive us, and we have become so unscriptural about the principle of forgiveness being a result of repentance that the churches are suffering because of this.

            I am commanded to forgive, but I can only forgive one who is repentent.  Look at Luke chapter 17:3-4.

“Take heed to yourselves: if thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.  And if he trespass against thee seven times in the day, and seven times a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him.”

            Repentance is required!  We cannot go on in this misuse and abuse of the word of God.  We will sin, be hateful, lie, steal, cheat, connive and hurt our fellow Christians, and never confess.  We never say, “I’m sorry,” yet we expect to be forgiven.  We go on as if nothing has ever happened, and we expect everyone else to do the same thing.  “Well,” you may say, “God is love, and we are to love folks.”  You are exactly right.  God is a forgiving God.  I am living proof of that.

“God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

            That is exactly right.  According to 2nd Peter 3:9.  That same Bible tells us, though, that it is impossible to please God without repentance.

            Let’s look now at a few things about repentance.  We saw the God is not willing that any should perish.  What is God’s will?  That all should come to repentance.  If you look at Luke 13:3.  The Lord says, I tell ye nay, but except the repent, ye shall all likewise perish.  My friends, a lack of repentance can and will shorten your life.

“I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.”  Luke 13:3.

            A lack of repentance brings grief to the heart of God.  God wants us to be forgiving.  He is pleased with an attitude of forgiving in his children.  At the same time God is angered by those who, by their own failure to repent, bind the hands of those who would willingly do the work of forgiving those who trespass against them.  This problem brings grief to the spirit of God.  When the congregation is assembled, is worshiping, is trying to have fellowship and communion, there will be a strain on all these things.  Do you realize what that amounts too?  Think about it;  When something puts a strain on worship, fellowship and communion, there is no harmony.  Harmony is what God wants us to have, and fellowship.  Instead, you wind up with discord among the brethren.  That can be just one soul who has done wrong toward one other soul in the church.  One unrepentant offender can disrupt the whole service for the whole congregation.  The Word of God tells us in Proverbs 6:16-19, that one of the things God hates is “he that soweth discord among the brethren.”  God hates discord.  Oh, friend, consider! If you have offended or hurt a brother you can be a hindrance on the whole congregation.  Are you guilty?  Your lack of repentance may stir up wrath and bitterness in the one whom you have offended.  Then it is almost inevitable that tongues will begin to wag.  This will begin to grow into a malicious exclusion of some members from some activities in the church.  Therefore, by one unrepentant offender, the whole church can be pulled completely out of fellowship with God.  Think of it, how simple, how true, and oh, how great a problem this is in our day.

“And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.  Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: and be ye kind one to another, tender hearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”

            One unrepentant person can cause every one of those problems that God commands us to put away. Unrepented sin in one man causes discord among many, and God hates that.  Maybe you think this is just limited to lost folks.  Maybe you think you’re saved, so you’re safe.  You can go on like this and no one else will ever know.  You try to convince yourself of this if you want to!  Be warned, however, God’s chosen people being led out of Egypt were warned, “be sure your sin will find you out.”  How does your sin, become known?  God will pull the cover off, he will judge.  God will take vengeance on his own people!

“Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord.  And again, the Lord shall judge his people.”  Hebrews 10:30.

            We see then that repentance is required.  It is a nonnegotiable standard of living to a Christian.  We’ll choose whether or not to repent.  It is a given rule of life.  Most of the time we know if we have offended someone; if not every time.  We don’t need to see convincing physical evidence when we have the Holy Spirit within us and leading us to repent.  God is true, and he doesn’t need to prove our guilt by providing evidence, his word is proof enough.

To whom do we owe repentance?

“Give none offense, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the Church of God.”  1st Corinthians 10:32

Friend, one person who has offended  another is to repent,  thereby facilitating forgiveness. Otherwise, the whole congregation can be dragged out of the will of God.  Harmony can and will be destroyed, making the  offender one who sows discord among the brethren, which God hates according to Proverbs 6:19.  What a fearful thing to be counted an enemy of the living God.

Waiting On God

Posted in christian, Christianity, commentary, consersative Christian, exposition, Opinion, religion, studies by jameshknight on November 8, 2012

Acts 16:6-11

Waiting on God

Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia, After they were come to Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia: but the Spirit suffered them not. And they passing by Mysia came down to Troas. And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; there stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us. And after he had seen the vision, immediately we endeavored to go into Macedonia, assuredly gathering that the Lord had called us for to preach the gospel unto them. Therefore loosing from Troas, we came with a straight course to Samothracia, and the next day to Neapolis;

Act 16:6-11

In our midweek study we have been going through the book of Acts and tonight I want us to notice a few things in particular about the passage before us. In looking at this study tonight I want us to pay close attention to the way that these men waited for the moving of the Holy Spirit before they committed to a moving of themselves in the ministry.

Many times we hear that we should do nothing while we wait for God to give us something to do. That could not be farther from the truth. We always have something to do where we are. If we honestly could not find anything else to do there is always a great need for prayer warriors to press the battle into the devil’s territory. No one is ever at a place where there is nothing that they can do to serve God. And in looking at these great men we see that they were busy about serving God where they were. Oh, yes, we may prefer to do something else, or to be somewhere else, but until God moves us we should stay right where we are and serve God here to the best of our ability. God will move us when He gets good and ready. Notice these men, serving while they waited for the direction of the Holy Spirit.

Many a preacher will discourage himself by refusing to serve where he is. A man may prefer to be here or there, or to be doing this or that, but God doesn’t wonder what He wants us to do or where He wants us to go. He already has a plan and we must simply wait for His time to do His will in His way that we might receive His blessings. Notice verse 7, “But the Spirit suffered them not”. The word suffer used in this sense, means “permit”. This tells us that the Holy Spirit would not permit them to go where they wanted to go. God already had a place for them to go. God was not wanting them to go into Asia. So, Paul stayed in Galatia for a time. This was around 51 or 52 A.D. and Paul stayed with the church where he was. (Phrygia and Galatia were the same land. It was once occupied by the Phrygians but was now also inhabited by the Gauls, (Cauls, Celts).

Notice again that the Spirit suffered them not.

1. Sometimes we are in doubt as to what God would have us to do.

2. Sometimes it may be clear what God would have us do, even though we would rather do otherwise.

3. And sometimes it is just unclear what God would have us do and we must wait where we are.

4. Still, sometimes we may have to make a move in order to know God’s will.

It is not always clear just what God wants us to do; At least not to us. And it is in these times of wondering that God is testing us and we sometimes must simply move to know which way to go. I remember a preacher once telling me about buying a bus for the ministry. He was under the impression that the bus had power steering. When he bought the bus without test driving it, he was upset when he found it was difficult to turn the wheel. Upon returning to the man who sold him the bus and making his complaint known the man explained to him what he had. The bus was equipped with “power-assisted” steering. The man was trying to turn the wheel in the direction he wanted to travel while he sat still. The man told him that he must give it some gas and start forward, then the steering would be assisted by the power of the engine pumping the steering system. He had to get going to get the power he needed. Well, sometimes serving God is like that. Sometimes we have to just get going in order to find out exactly what God has in store. You may ask me for a good bible example of this truth. I’m glad you asked. Abraham heard God say,

“Get thee out of thy country, and from they kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee:”

And Abram went. He did not know where he was going when he moved, but He knew that God wanted him to move, and he got busy.  Fully knowing God’s will was contingent upon the obedience to the command.  Abraham had to move to learn.

We do have a guideline to follow in any and all instances of our service to God and in our lives. We find this guideline in Romans 14:23b. “for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.” Notice the simplicity of this statement.

1. Whatsoever and that means anything that is not of faith, any action we commit, any word we speak, any desire we seek to satisfy, any act of service, anything that we can not do by faith is a sin for us to do.

2. is not of faith and this means that if we can not do this or that without that inner peace that comes with knowing that this is the perfect Will of God our Father then it is sin. If you do something and you are in a turmoil over it, in doubt as to whether or not to do it, then it is sin for you to do it. Wait on God.

3. is sin it is sin! It can not be much plainer than that. If you can not do something by faith, in comfort and with the peace of God in your heart, then it is a sin for you to do that.

There is no room left for doubt as to just what this passage of scripture means. It is simple truth. Paul knew that he could not go to Asia because the Spirit would not allow him, would not permit him to go.

[NOTE] Romans 8:14

“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.”

Notice what we learn from this verse. Look at the last half of that verse. “They are the sons of God.” Who are the sons of God? As many as are led by the Spirit.

Look now at Romans 8:14-17 together…

For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. 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.

Rom 8:14

1. We are garunteed guidance in verse 14

2. By the same Spirit by which we know that we belong to God

3. And it is for our good, and God’s Glory

The question may be brought up as to why God would not let them go to Asia and to preach in Bythinia. God needs answer to no one as to Himself or His actions. God knows the hearts of men both as individuals and collectively. God already had a plan for Paul and it required that they go to Macedonia. (Verses 9-11)

And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; there stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us. And after he had seen the vision, immediately we endeavored to go into Macedonia, assuredly gathering that the Lord had called us for to preach the gospel unto them. Therefore loosing from Troas, we came with a straight course to Samothracia, and the next day to Neapolis;

Act 16:9-11

Paul and those with him wanted to go to Asia and to preach to them the word of God. Why did God not allow them to god there as they desired? Did not God love those of Asia and want to see them receive the gospel? Of course God loves all people, yet God already had a plan for Paul and He was leading Paul in the way that He would have him to go. Notice what took place because these men were sensitive to the moving and leading of the Holy Spirit.

Verses 12-015

And from thence to Philippi, which is the chief city of that part of Macedonia, and a colony: and we were in that city abiding certain days. And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was wont to be made; and we sat down, and spake unto the women which resorted thither. And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul. And when she was baptized, and her household, she besought us, saying, If ye have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house, and abide there. And she constrained us.

Act 16:12-15

This was Paul’s memorable trip to Philippi. There was a “certain” woman there. Notice some things here. In verse 12 we see that they arrived at Philippi and were there certain days, but when the Sabbath day came along notice, they had no synagogue to attend worship. What did they do? They went to the river where prayer was wont to be made. Here in this city with no place to worship the True and Living God there were a handful of souls getting together to pray to the God of Heaven by the river there out of the way and God had already purposed to send this great man of God Paul down there to them and let them receive of him the word of God. Here they were, the bible says, praying to God, perhaps for someone to guide them in knowing this God that they were seeking and God heard their prayer from heaven and answered that prayer by sending them what they stood in need of. And notice that “certain” woman. It was no accident that she was there, and it was no accident that Paul was there. God had this certain woman in mind the whole time. Hallelujah to God, He had us in mind when we did not know Who He was. He had us in mind before we ever knew we were lost. He had us in mind!

In looking at verses 14 and 15 we see the work of God being done, and it was all because of the leading and the working of the Holy Spirit. Now there was a church in a city where no church was before. Now there was a local congregation and the place for worship was there among them, whether it be at the river, or at the house of Lydia.

Next, look at verse 16. You will see a “certain damsel”. Oh, friend, how precious a truth it is that God has the individual in mind. Salvation is not a group action, like a class action law-suit. God works with individuals. Here we see just another picture of one for whom the Lord went out of the way , and in the following verses she receives just exactly what she needs from these disciples of God who were willing to wait for the leadership of the Holy Spirit.

Every step of the way, we see that Paul and the disciples with him were needed here. He may have wanted to go into Asia, but God had work for him here and now. There were many to be blessed and God was working now. Notice that the young damsel was possessed; She had a devil. As she followed these men she was mocking them and persisted in doing so publicly until Paul could take no more and He turned and cast that devil out of her. I truly believe that the young lady got saved then and there. Notice what is said in verse 19. Her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone. There was no way they would ever make money of her again. She was a new person, a different person, useless in the work of this bunch of devils. Praise God! The young woman was now a child of God.

And next we see that Paul and his company are forced to suffer for the cause of Christ; All the while maintaining the testimony of children of God, and all of this for serving God when and where God wanted them to be.

We also often fail to realize that God may lead us through hard times. Well, here they are, in God’s will and suffering persecution. Look at the outcome now in the following verses. Paul and Silas are in the stocks, in the dungeon, and singing praises to God. No doubt the jailor must have fallen asleep hearing these men singing. Imagine when he awoke and was about to take his own life until Paul called to him. This jailor came into the prison to them and fell down and begged for salvation. Oh, friend, that was a “certain jailor”. HALLELUJAH!!! They had suffered yes, but look at the reward! In verse 34 we see now that there are more added to the household of faith. Now there is a church at Philippi. Isn’t it a blessing what God will do with us and for us if we will simply follow Him?

Sometimes we need to remember that we are just servants. We have a master and our will is to be to do the will of our master. When we are willing to put our own desires and longings aside, and focus our attention upon His desires, then we can realize the great blessings that He will bestow upon them that are faithful. Sometimes we could accomplish great things if we would just learn to be faithful in the little things, like waiting on God. What if Paul had simply run to Asia? Look at what he might have missed.

1. Lydia and her family got saved.

2. A young woman was freed from a devil and saved

3. That jailor and his family got saved

4. When they moved on there was a church where there had been none before that time

5. We have the beginning of the church to which Paul wrote a beautiful letter which is still one of the books of the New Testament

Sometimes it pays to wait on God.