Sunday, December 8, 2013

To Judge Ourselves Part 15 – Wake Up

To Judge Ourselves
Part 15 – Wake Up
Pastor Bruce A. Shields
House of Faith Church | www.PS127.org | www.TruthDigest.org

INTRODUCTION
We spent the last year looking at what the Book of Acts had to say about the founding, operation and behavior that the Lord expects from us as individuals, and as a church, or congregation of believers.

We then spent a few weeks looking at the letters that Jesus sent to the seven churches in Revelation, telling them where they were going right, and wrong, as well as what the punishments and rewards would be.

A few weeks ago, I took all of those letters, and compiled them into one letter from the Lord, to us.

Our new series will take a look at each of the points Jesus made in that letter, and we will not only examine our church as a whole, but ourselves as individuals.


2 Corinthians 13:5 "Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!"


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


2 Peter 2:4-10 "For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell[a] and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly;[c] and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard); then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, 10 and especially those who indulge[e] in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority."

We have already looked at Jesus speaking to us about hard work, not tolerating wicked people in the church, and testing those who claim to be apostles, but are nothing more than false prophets, and last week we spoke on perseverance, and enduring hardships for His name, Spiritually Rich during times of affliction and poverty, Slander, Not Being Afraid, Where Satan Rules, Faithfulness, Deeds, The Open Door, First Love, Repentance and Salvation, False Doctrine.

Last week we looked at Jezebel.

This week we will look at the warning to Wake Up.


SCRIPTURE REFERENCE
Revelation 3:1-6
These are the words of him who holds the seven-fold spirit of God (meaning the Holy Spirit in fullness of capability, seven being the number of perfection) and the seven stars (Pastors of the seven churches, whom the Lord has poured out His Spirit to). 

I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. Wake up!

Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have found your deeds unfinished in the sight of my God.

 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; hold it fast, and repent

But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.


I.                   I KNOW YOUR DEEDS
a.      Not what people say, or you think, but what actually is
                                                             i.      People can say all sorts of things, both good and bad, about you. This doesn't make them so.

                                                          ii.      It doesn't matter if someone says something bad about you.
1.      James 1:26 "If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless."




                                                       iii.      It doesn't matter if someone says something good about you.
1.      Matthew 6:1-4 “Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
“So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

                                                         iv.      It doesn't matter what you say about yourself, even if you believe what you are saying, it doesn't mean it is so.
1.      Jeremiah 17:9-10 "The heart is deceitful above all things
    and beyond cure.
    Who can understand it?
10 “I the Lord search the heart
    and examine the mind,
to reward each person according to their conduct,
    according to what their deeds deserve.”

b.     Your reputation claims you are alive.
                                                             i.      Whether you claim this of yourself, or others claim this of you...the Lord searches your heart, and examines your mind.

                                                          ii.      Why? To know our deeds, our motivations.

                                                       iii.      He rewards each of us according to our conduct, according to what our deeds deserve.

                                                         iv.      This means, if you "do" for the wrong motivations, such as getting the praise of men, you will receive no reward from your heavenly Father.

                                                            v.      If you "do" for the rights motivations, to serve God, for His Glory, then the Lord will know this from your heart and mind, and reward you according to your conduct.

c.      But you are dead.
                                                             i.      The Lord speaks to those who are dead today.
                                                          ii.      Calling them out of their death, and into life.

II.               WAKE UP!
a.      God's Grace
                                                             i.      He has given us time to repent.

                                                          ii.      The Lord could have called us all to judgment, yet, He paid our debt which is owed for sin, and has given us all time to repent. Because He has given us Grace.

b.     God's Call to you
                                                             i.      God has called each of us from the time we are young.
                                                          ii.      Some of us answer His call when we are young.
                                                       iii.      Some fight Him until we are older.
                                                         iv.      Some fight Him until they are very old.
                                                            v.      Some fight Him to the death.

                                                         vi.      However, God calls each of us...
1.      1 Timothy 2:1-6  "I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all people."


c.      God's Forgiveness
                                                             i.      “The Lord is slow to anger and filled with unfailing love, forgiving every kind of sin and rebellion.” Numbers 14:18

                                                          ii.       “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”  1 John 1:9

                                                       iii.       “Of Him all the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins.”  Acts 10:43 


d.     You're a New Creature and a New Creation
                                                             i.      "The Lord is gracious and compassionate; slow to anger and rich in love." Psalm 145:8
                                                          ii.      Accepting Jesus' sacrifice for your sins, receiving the contract of the new covenant, purchased with His blood, makes you eligible to REPENT, and be forgiven of sin, and have a place in eternity with the Lord.

                                                       iii.       When you submit to the Lord, and serve Him, He will give to you His Holy Spirit, which lives inside of you.
1.      You will naturally produce Spiritual Fruits.
a.      Ephesians 5
2.      You will naturally have Spiritual Gifts.
a.      1 Corinthians 12
3.      You will be Equipped for Spiritual Battle.
a.      Ephesians 6



III.            STRENGTHEN WHAT REMAINS
a.      It is about to die!
                                                             i.      The Lord warned them to strengthen what they had left.
1.      What are you going to feed? Flesh or Spirit?
2.      Whichever you feed, becomes stronger.
3.      You cannot serve both!


b.     Remember what you have received
                                                             i.      They received forgiveness...do not return to sin.


c.      Remember what you have heard
                                                             i.      Return to the Word of God.
                                                          ii.      It will encourage you, strengthen you, lift you, build you up, and make you closer to God in a right relationship.


d.     Hold it fast!
                                                             i.      Do not let go!
                                                          ii.      Even when times are tough, hold tighter!


e.      and REPENT
                                                             i.      Not once, not twice, but every time the Spirit reveals to you, your sin.
                                                          ii.      Repentance is a lifestyle, not an act.
                                                       iii.      Show fruits worthy of repentance. Behave in the manner which is worthy of representing God and His Kingdom.





CONCLUSION
You can say you are this, or that, and others can have great things to say about you. However, God knows your heart, and the truth of whom and what you are. He knows your deeds, your works, and your thoughts.

Are you ALIVE, or dead?

If you are dead, you will be producing the fruit of the flesh in your life.  Galatians 5:19-21
"19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immoralityimpurity and corruption20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God."

If you are truly alive, you will be producing the Fruit of the Spirit of God which dwells within you. Galatians 5:22-26 "the fruit of the Spirit is lovejoy, peacepatience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other."



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