THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT

PROGRAM AIR DATE – 10-4-15

LESSON TITLE: “TEMPTATION AND SIN!”

WELCOME

“…LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.” JUST HOW MUCH DO YOU LOVE YOUR GOD ON THIS WONDROUS LORD’S DAY MORNING? I HOPE IT IS WITH EVERY FIBER OF YOUR BEING, WITH THE TOTALITY OF YOUR HUMAN NATURE!

THANKS FOR JOINING US THIS DAY FOR GOD’S LIVING WORD. LET ME REMIND US AGAIN OF JUST HOW BLESSED WE ARE TO HAVE OPPORTUNITIES LIKE THIS TO PRAISE OUR GOD AND TO DO THOSE THINGS WHICH ARE ACCORDING TO HIS WILL. ARE YOU WILLING TO DO YOUR PART THIS MORNING TO MAKE THIS TIME SUCCESSFUL IN THE SERVICE OF GOD? NOW, AS WE BEGIN OUR OFFERING TO GOD, WILL YOU BOW WITH ME IN PRAYER!

PRAYER: OUR GOD AND FATHER IN HEAVEN, WE THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS DAY AND THE GREAT BLESSINGS OF LIFE, THE PRIVILEGE THAT WE HAVE TO BE CALLED YOUR CHILDREN AND TO SERVE YOU. AND FATHER, WE ASK THAT YOU ALWAYS HELP US TO SHINE AS LIGHTS IN THIS WORLD, THAT THE WORLD MIGHT KNOW YOU THROUGH US. AND FATHER, WE ASK THIS DAY THAT YOU'LL HELP US TO ALWAYS FOCUS ON YOUR SON JESUS AND REALIZE THE GREAT SACRIFICE HE MADE AS WELL AS HIS BURIAL AND RESURRECTION WHICH ALLOWS US TO BE FOUND JUSTIFIED IN YOUR SIGHT. HELP US AT THIS TIME TO DO ALL THINGS IN SPIRIT AND TRUTH AS YOU COMMAND IN YOUR WORD, THE BIBLE. AND IN JESUS NAME WE PRAY, AMEN.

WHAT BETTER WAY TO WORSHIP GOD THAN IN SONG. SO AT THIS TIME LET’S JOIN TOGETHER IN OUR FIRST HYMN OF THE DAY, IT’S NAME, “WE HAVE HEARD THE JOYFUL SOUND.”

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHTS

AS WE BEGIN THIS MORNING, LET’S CONTINUE TO FOCUS ON THE LOVE WHICH WE ARE TO HAVE FOR OUR CREATOR. A LOVE THAT IS REQUIRED OF ALL WHO WILL FOLLOW JESUS AND OBEY HIS WILL.

HOWEVER, LET’S CONSIDER FOR A MOMENT JUST HOW IMPORTANT IT IS THAT WE LOVE GOD? AS WE READ FROM MATTHEW 22:37, AT THE BEGINNING OF OUR PROGRAM, WE LEARN THAT THIS WAS THE “FIRST AND GREATEST COMMAND,” FROM GOD ALMIGHTY HIMSELF! LET ME REMIND YOU THAT THESE WERE ALSO THE VERY WORDS OF JESUS CHRIST, WHICH HE WAS PROCLAIMING TO HIS DISCIPLES. I WOULD SAY THAT IF GOD HAS SAID WE MUST DO IT, THEN IT MUST BE VERY IMPORTANT.

ALONG THESE SAME LINES, I REMEMBER A DAY IN THE HISTORY OF ISRAEL, WHEN JOSHUA CHALLENGED GOD’S PEOPLE TO LOVE THEIR GOD. IN CHAPTER 23, AND VERSE 11 OF HIS BOOK, WE READ, “THEREFORE TAKE CAREFUL HEED TO YOURSELVES, THAT YOU LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD.” IN THE CONTEXT, JOSHUA HAD REMINDED ISRAEL OF ALL THAT GOD HAD DONE, AND WAS DOING FOR THEM. HE WAS CARING FOR THEM, GUIDING THEM AND PROTECTING THEM. IN FACT, IN VERSE 10, HE WENT SO FAR AS TO SAY THAT GOD HAD EVEN FOUGHT FOR THEM AGAINST THE WICKED NATIONS OF CANAAN. SO WHAT A BEAUTIFUL THOUGHT JOSHUA IS PLACING BEFORE THE PEOPLE OF GOD HERE, AS HE REMINDS THEM TO BE CAREFUL HOW THEY DEAL WITH SUCH A POWERFUL AND MIGHTY CREATOR. GOD TRULY DESERVES AND REQUIRES COMPLETE RESPECT AND REVERENCE.

BRETHREN, THE REALITY IS, OUR GOD REQUIRES THE SAME TODAY. HE WANTS OUR LOVE, SERVICE AND OBEDIENCE. HE HAS ASKED US TO SUBMIT TO HIS WILL AND DO ALL THAT HE HAS COMMANDED. HOWEVER, HE HAS NOT ASKED US TO OBEY OR TO FOLLOW, WITHOUT FIRST DOING HIS PART AND SHOWING HIS WONDROUS LOVE AND CONCERN IN EACH OF OUR LIVES. YOU SEE, GOD FIRST LOVED US AND PROVED IT THROUGH ALL THAT HE HAS DONE AND IS DOING FOR US. THEREFORE, WE SHOULD ALSO LOVE HIM, THROUGH A CLEARLY SEEN OBEDIENCE OF THOSE THINGS WHICH HE HAS REQUIRED OF US THROUGH HIS WORD. ARE YOU SHOWING THIS TYPE OF LOVE TO YOUR GOD? ISN’T HE WORTHY OF OUR COMPLETE LOVE, CONSIDERING ALL THAT HE HAS DONE FOR US? WILL YOU CHOOSE THIS DAY TO, “LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.”

TODAY WE WILL BE CONCLUDING OUR SERIES ENTITLED, “BUT THEY ALL BEGAN TO MAKE EXCUSES!” OUR LESSON OF THE DAY WILL DEAL WITH, “TEMPTATION AND SIN!” SO STAY WITH US THIS MORNING, AND AFTER OUR NEXT SONG TOGETHER, I WILL BE LEADING OUR MAIN THOUGHTS OF THE DAY.

WELL, FOR NOW LET’S JOIN TOGETHER IN OUR SECOND SONG OF THE MORNING. THE NAME OF THIS HYMN, “WHAT A FRIEND WE HAVE IN JESUS.”

LESSON

BY RAY SULLINS

WE'RE VERY THANKFUL THAT YOU HAVE CONTINUED WITH US THIS DAY. IT'S GOOD TO BE TOGETHER ON THE LORD'S DAY THAT WE MIGHT STUDY FROM HIS WORD AND GROW IN THOSE THINGS THAT MIGHT MAKE US BETTER SERVANTS AND WORKERS IN THE KINGDOM OF GOD. AND AS I'VE ALREADY MADE MENTION THIS DAY, WE ARE GOING TO BE CONCLUDING OUR SERIES THAT WE'VE LOOKED AT FOR QUITE SOME TIME NOW IN RELATIONSHIP TO A PARABLE OF JESUS FOUND THERE IN THE BOOK OF LUKE CHAPTER 14. AND YOU MIGHT RECALL WITH ME THAT PARABLE WAS OF A GREAT WEDDING FEAST. AND THE SITUATION WAS THAT MANY HAD BEEN INVITED BUT GUESS WHAT? THEY ALL KEPT MAKING EXCUSES. IN FACT, THE TEXT SAYS THEY ALL BEGAN TO MAKE EXCUSES OF ONE REASON OR ANOTHER AS TO WHY THEY CANNOT GO TO THE WEDDING FEAST OF THE LEADER OR THE KING OR THE MASTER. CERTAINLY A PARABLE REFERENCING THE CONCEPT OF JESUS, AND THE FACT OF THE GREAT POWER THAT HE HAS BEEN GIVEN, AND YET THE JEWS REJECTED HIM. THEY SHOULD'VE BEEN THE FIRST TO RECEIVE HIM BUT THEY REJECTED HIM AND THEY MADE ALL SORTS OF EXCUSES WHEN HE CAME TO THIS EARTH. BUT YET THERE WE'RE THOSE WHO WOULD HEAR AND THEY WERE THE GENTILES. AND SO THE SERVANTS WERE SENT OUT TO COLLECT THEM AND BROUGHT THEM TO THE WEDDING FEAST. AND LATER, BECAUSE OF THAT, THE JEWS WERE REFUSED, REALLY BEING ABLE TO BE A PART OF THAT FEAST BECAUSE THEY WOULD NOT ACCEPT THE WILL OF GOD.

WELL, ALL THOSE THINGS THEN HAVE TAKEN US FOR SEVERAL WEEKS NOW THROUGHOUT A DIFFERENT DISCUSSION IN MANY DIFFERENT WAYS OF HOW IT IS THAT WE'VE BECOME THOSE TYPES OF PEOPLE WHO REALLY ARE NO LONGER MAKING EXCUSES. THAT WE DON'T ALLOW THE DIFFERENT THINGS OF OUR LIFE AND MAYBE THE IGNORANCES OR THE DESIRES THAT WE HAVE TO ALLOW US TO MAKE EXCUSES WHEN REALLY WHAT WE NEED TO DO IS SIMPLY KNOW THE WILL OF GOD, WHICH IS FOUND IN HIS WORD, AND THEN TO OBEY IT. AND SO THIS MORNING WHAT WE WOULD LIKE TO DO IN CONCLUDING OUR SERIES IS TO LOOK AT THE IDEA OF REALLY THE EXCUSE THAT WE SOMETIMES MAKE IN RELATIONSHIP TO TEMPTATION AND SIN. HAVE YOU EVER HEARD THAT OLD EXCUSE THE DEVIL MADE ME DO IT? AND IT'S NOT JUST THE DEVIL MADE ME DO IT, ALTHOUGH I'VE HEARD THAT IDEA BEING PRESENTED BY INDIVIDUALS BEFORE USUALLY IN A LIGHTHEARTED OR FUN WAY. BUT I'VE HEARD EVEN MORE THAN THAT - THE IDEA PRESENTED BY OTHERS THAT SOMEONE ELSE MADE ME DO IT, OR IF HE HAD DONE THAT THEN I WOULDN'T HAVE DONE IT. OR IF SHE HADN'T DONE THAT THEN I WOULDN'T HAVE DONE WHAT I DID. OR IF THEY HADN'T STARTED IT I WOULDN'T HAVE FINISHED IT. YOU SEE THAT OLD IDEA OF REALLY THAT SOMEONE ELSE MADE ME DO IT.

SO WHEN WE THINK ABOUT THE IDEA OF TEMPTATION AND SIN WE OFTEN WANT TO BLAME SATAN, AND CERTAINLY THE BLAME DOES REST UPON SATAN IN MANY WAYS FOR HE IS THE FATHER OF LIES AND HE IS THE GREAT DECEIVER WHO IS OUT THERE TRYING TO LEAD US ASTRAY. BUT DO WE HAVE TO CHOOSE SIN? CERTAINLY NOT. DO WE HAVE TO GIVE INTO TEMPTATION? CERTAINLY WE DO NOT AND SO THERE IS THE REAL CRUX OF THE DISCUSSION. WE KNOW THAT TEMPTATION IS REAL, WE KNOW THAT SIN IS REAL, AND THAT SIN AND TEMPTATION ARE ALL AROUND US IN THE WORLD THAT WE LIVE, AND EVEN THE SOCIETY THAT WE LIVE IN HERE IN THE UNITED STATES. BUT OUR CHOICE IS STILL OUR CHOICE - WHETHER WE CHOOSE TO FOLLOW GOD OR CHOOSE THE WAYS OF THE WORLD. YOU SEE, IT'S NOT REALLY THE FAULT OF TEMPTATION AND SIN THAT WE CHOOSE TO TRANSGRESS THE WILL OF GOD. IT'S OUR OWN DECISION.

SO LET'S BEGIN TO LOOK AT THESE THINGS TOGETHER AND WE WANT TO FIRST KIND OF DEFINE THE DIFFERENT IDEAS, NOT ONLY FROM THE STANDPOINT OF THE ORIGINAL LANGUAGE, BUT ALSO THE IDEA OF REALLY WHAT THE BIBLE HAS TO SAY. AND FIRST OF ALL THINKING ABOUT THE IDEA OF SIN, THE IDEA OF SIN COMES FROM THE GREEK WORD WHICH IS HAMARTIA. AND THAT WORD REALLY BEGINS TO LOOK AT THE IDEA OF INIQUITY, CERTAINLY. BUT IT EVEN MORE THAN THAT DEALS WITH THE CONCEPT OF MISSING A MARK. AND SO AS YOU THINK ABOUT MAYBE THAT ARCHER AND HE'S SHOOTING AT THAT CIRCULAR SPOT AND HE WANTS TO HIT THE CENTER AND HE SAT THAT MAYBE THAT DECAL OR WHATEVER OUT JUST FAR ENOUGH AWAY THAT HE MIGHT TRY TO HIT THE CENTER OR AT LEAST TRY TO HIT THE TARGET. AND HE PULLS THAT BOW AND AN ARROW BACK AND HE LET'S GO AND HE MISSES IT ALTOGETHER. WELL, THAT'S KIND OF THE IDEA OF MISSING THE MARK. WE KNOW WHAT THE MARK IS - WE SEE THE MARK AND WE HAVE A DESIRE TO HIT IT BUT WE MISS THE MARK. AND EVEN IF WE DON'T MISS IT ALTOGETHER WE AT LEAST STILL MISS THE CENTER OF THAT MARK BY JUST A LITTLE BIT OR MAYBE EVEN MORE.

NOW THINK ABOUT THAT IN A SPIRITUAL SENSE. WE HAVE THE MARK. WHAT IS THE MARK? GOD. HOW DO WE KNOW GOD TODAY? HOW DO WE KNOW THE WILL OF GOD? THE WORD OF GOD. SO WE HAVE THAT MARK OUT THERE - WHICH IS GOD AND HIS WILL, WHICH IS FOUND IN THE WORD, AND WE'RE TRYING TO HIT THAT MARK. WE'RE TRYING TO TO ACCOMPLISH THAT TASK AND BE FOUND AS SOMEONE WHO IS CAPABLE OF HITTING THE CENTER OF THE TARGET. AND GUESS WHAT'S HAPPENING? WELL, WHEN WE CHOOSE SIN WE'RE MISSING THE MARK. WE'RE NOT ACCOMPLISHING THE TASK. SO GOD SAYS: RAY, YOU NEED TO STUDY YOUR BIBLE. AND RAY DOESN'T STUDY THE BIBLE SO WHAT HAPPENS? WELL, HE MISSES THE MARK. ( GOD ) RAY, YOU NEED TO SHOW LOVE TO OTHER PEOPLE. AND RAY DOESN'T DO THAT SO HE MISSES THE MARK. AND SO IT MIGHT BE IN A NUMBER OF AREAS, IT MIGHT ONLY BE IN ONE AREA, OR PERHAPS YOU ARE HITTING THE MARK BECAUSE YOU ARE GOING TO THE WORD OF GOD AND YOU ARE DOING THOSE THINGS THAT ARE FOUND THERE IN.

WITH THOSE THINGS IN MIND, THEN I WOULD LIKE YOU TO LOOK WITH ME IN THE TEXT FOUND IN 1 JOHN CHAPTER 3. AND THERE IN VERSE 4 OF THAT TEXT WE BEGIN TO SEE, REALLY THE IDEA OF SIN IF YOU WILL AND THE CONSEQUENCES BEING DISCUSSED. BUT ALSO THE OPPORTUNITY TO GET OUT OF SIN. BUT SPECIFICALLY HE KIND OF DEFINES IT VERY SIMPLY AND HE SAYS, “WHOEVER COMMITS SIN ALSO COMMITS LAWLESSNESS, SIN IS LAWLESSNESS.” NOW AGAIN THAT'S A SIGNIFICANT IDEA BECAUSE WHEN WE THINK ABOUT THE IDEA OF LAWLESSNESS IT CAN ALSO BE TRANSLATED AS INIQUITY. SIN IS INIQUITY OR LAWLESSNESS - THAT AGAIN ESTABLISHES THE IDEA THAT THERE IS WHAT? LAW. AND SO IF SIN IS THE IDEA OF LAWLESSNESS OR NOT FOLLOWING LAW, WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? WELL, IT MEANS THERE HAS TO BE A LAW AND THAT WE CHOOSE NOT TO FOLLOW THAT LAW. AND SO WE MIGHT EVEN LOOK AT IT IN A SECULAR SENSE. LET'S SAY WE KNOW WHAT LAW IS AND WE KNOW THAT WE ARE SUPPOSED TO FOLLOW THE LAW, BUT WHEN WE BREAK THE LAW WE WHAT? WE HAVE CONSEQUENCES THAT WE OFTEN WILL BEAR BECAUSE OF IT AND WE HAVE DONE WRONG. WE HAVE DONE CONTRARY TO THE LAW - SPIRITUALLY THAT'S WHAT IT'S SAYING. WE HAVE THE LAW AS WE TALKED ABOUT A MOMENT AGO, THAT TARGET, THAT CONCEPT OF GOD AND HIS WILL THAT IS GIVEN TO US. AND WHEN WE TRY TO HIT THAT TARGET OR THAT MARK THAT IS THE LAW OF GOD. AND WHEN WE MISS IT, GUESS WHAT? WE ARE LAWLESS. WE KNOW WHAT THE LAW SAYS BUT WE'RE LAWLESS. WE KNOW THAT WE ARE REQUIRED TO DO CERTAIN THINGS BUT WE CHOOSE TO REJECT THE LAW AND THEREFORE WE ARE GUILTY OF IT. AND AS WE WELL KNOW, THEREFORE PUNISHABLE BY THE LAW.

NOW, ANOTHER THING THAT I THINK IS REALLY SIGNIFICANT ABOUT THAT IS IN THE SAME VERSE HE SAYS THAT SIN IS LAWLESSNESS. AND WHEN WE BEGIN, AS THAT TEXT GOES ON TO SAY, TO DESCRIBE THE CONCEPT OF HOW THAT WE CAN OVERCOME SIN, HE GOES ON TO SAY THIS IN VERSE 5, “AND YOU KNOW THAT HE WAS MANIFESTED TO TAKE AWAY OUR SINS, AND IN HIM THERE IS NOT SIN.” IS THE CONCEPT THAT HE'S GETTING TO THERE. BUT THEN THE VERY NEXT VERSE SAYS THIS, “WHOEVER ABIDES IN HIM DOES NOT SIN. WHOEVER SINS HAS NEITHER SEEN HIM NOR KNOWN HIM.” WELL, YOU CAN'T CLAIM TO BE OF GOD, YOU CAN'T CLAIM TO KNOW THE TARGET AND KNOW WHAT IT IS THAT HE REQUIRES KNOWING HIS LAW AND YOU DON'T DO THE LAW - BECAUSE WHAT IT SAYS HERE IS THAT'S SIN. BUT THEN IN VERSE 6 OR RATHER VERSE 7 HE GOES ON TO SAY, “LITTLE CHILDREN, LET NO ONE DEEIVE YOU.” HE SAYS, “HE WHO PRACTICES RIGHTEOUSNESS IS RIGHTEOUS, JUST AS HE IS RIGHTEOUS.” OH WOW! YOU SEE THE CLARITY OF WHAT IS BEING DECLARED IN THE SCRIPTURES HERE? DO YOU SEE HOW CLEAR THAT GOD DEMONSTRATES WHAT IS RIGHT AND GOOD AND PERFECT RIGHTEOUSNESS?

AND SIN IS THE WHAT? THE OPPOSITE. SIN IS LAWLESSNESS. TO UNDERSTAND THAT TURN OVER JUST A FEW CHAPTERS WITH ME TO 1 JOHN CHAPTER 5. AND THERE IF YOU'LL NOTICE WITH ME IN VERSE 17 IT SAYS, “ALL UNRIGHTEOUSNES,” NOT SOME, “ALL UNRIGHTEOUSNESS IS SIN!” SO NOW WE SAY THAT, NOT ONLY IS SIN LAWLESSNESS, BUT ANYTHING THAT IS UNRIGHTEOUS IS SIN. WHY? BECAUSE GOD IS RIGHTEOUS AND HE WHO FOLLOWS GOD STRIVES TO BE RIGHTEOUS AND DOES NOT PRACTICE SIN. AND SO IF WE ENGAGE IN UNRIGHTEOUSNESS GUESS WHAT? WE SIN. AND SO WE'VE GOT A CHOICE TO MAKE, BROTHERS AND SISTERS, FRIENDS, EACH AND EVERY DAY. EACH AND EVERY MOMENT, OF EACH AND EVERY DAY OF EVERY WEEK AND YEAR OF LIFE. WE HAVE A CHOICE TO MAKE AND THAT CHOICE IS WHETHER WE WILL CHOOSE SIN, LAWLESS, UNRIGHTEOUSNESS, OR WHETHER WE WILL CHOOSE THE WAY OF GOD - THE TARGET, THE SCRIPTURE, THE TRUTH, THAT HE HAS GIVEN US. AND THEREFORE, STRIVING TO BE RIGHTEOUS AND LAW-ABIDING AS GOD DEMANDS.

NOW THE NEXT IDEA IS THE CONCEPT OF TEMPTATION. AND YOU MIGHT NOTICE WITH ME A TEXT THAT DEALS WITH IT WELL, AS IS AT LEAST IT'S TRANSLATED INTO ENGLISH, IS JAMES CHAPTER 1. AND THERE'S A WORD THAT IS USED THROUGHOUT THIS TEXT IN CHAPTER 1 THAT IS OFTEN TRANSLATED AS NOT JUST TEMPTATION BUT TRIALS. AND WHAT WE'RE GETTING TO HERE ARE THE IDEAS OF THOSE THINGS THAT SOMETIMES MIGHT DISTRACT US OR PULL US DOWN OR SOMEHOW OR IN SOME WAY ENCOURAGE OR MAYBE CAUSE US TO THINK ABOUT NOT DOING WHAT WE NORMALLY WOULD DO OR WHAT WE REALLY WOULD WANT TO DO IN RELATIONSHIP TO THE WILL OF GOD. AND SO AS MAYBE WE'RE WALKING ALONG AND WE'RE HITTING THAT TARGET - WE'RE ON THE MARK - AND ALL OF A SUDDEN THAT TEMPTATION COMES AND SOMEBODY PUSHES US OR HITS US IN THE ARM WHEN WE'RE LETTING GO OF THAT ARROW AND IT MISSES THE MARK. WELL, YOU SEE THAT TEMPTATION THAT COMES, THAT DESIRE THAT COMES.

WELL, I WANT YOU TO NOTICE WITH ME HOW JAMES REALLY DEFINES THIS WITHIN THE TEXT. THERE IN VERSE 13 OF JAMES CHAPTER 1 HE SAYS, “LET NO ONE SAY WHEN HE IS TEMPTED,” OR ENGAGED IN THE TEMPTATIONS THAT COME HIS WAY THAT, “’I AM TEMPTED BY GOD.’ FOR GOD CANNOT BE TEMPTED BY EVIL, NOR DOES HE HIMSELF TEMPT ANYONE.’” BUT NOW GO ON WITH ME IN VERSE 14, “BUT EACH ONE,” EACH INDIVIDUAL, “IS TEMPTED WHEN HE IS DRAWN AWAY BY HIS OWN DESIRES AND ENTICED. THEN, WHEN DESIRE HAS CONCEIVED, IT GIVES BIRTH TO SIN; AND SIN WHEN IT IS FULL-GROWN, BRINGS FORTH DEATH.” YOU SEE THE IDEA NOW OF WHO'S REALLY AT FAULT? YEAH, THE TEMPTATIONS ARE OUT THERE. THE SINS ARE AROUND US AND PEOPLE MIGHT BE TRYING TO ENCOURAGE US TO MISS THE MARK. AND THERE MIGHT BE INDIVIDUALS WORKING FOR SATAN OR INDIVIDUALS AROUND US WHO REALLY ARE, BY PEER PRESSURE, KEEPING US OR AT LEAST ENCOURAGING US NOT TO BE THE TYPE OF FOLLOWER OF GOD THAT WE SHOULD. BUT WHAT IS REALLY THE FAULT? WHAT'S THE PROBLEM? NOT THE TEMPTATION. NOT THE INDIVIDUAL. NOT GOD. NOT SATAN. THE FAULT LIES WITH YOU AND I WHEN WE CHOOSE TO MAKE A DECISION TO EITHER REJECT THE WILL OF GOD, NOT OBEY THE WILL OF GOD, OR TO BE ASHAMED OF THE WILL OF GOD. RATHER THAN SIMPLY DOING WHAT GOD SAYS. DID YOU NOTICE WHAT HE SAID THERE? EACH ONE IS TEMPTED. THE TEMPTATION IS ABOUT YOU AND I ALLOWING OUR DESIRES TO BE ACTED UPON. AND THEN ONCE WE HAVE THOSE DESIRES AND WE SEE THAT TEMPTATION AND WE WANT TO ACT ON IT, WE DO THINGS THAT LEAD TO WHAT? SIN - THE ACTION OF FULFILLING THE DESIRES ARE SIN.

NOW LET ME GIVE YOU AN EXAMPLE. YOU REMEMBER DAVID WHEN HE GAZED UPON, AS THE SCRIPTURE SAYS, BATHSHEBA? WHEN HE FIRST LOOKED AT HER AND SAW THE TEMPTATION - AS SHE WAS THERE WITHOUT CLOTHING ON THE ROOFTOP - CERTAINLY HE COULD'VE TURNED AWAY. HE COULD'VE TURNED AWAY FROM THAT TEMPTATION AND NEVER WOULD HAVE SINNED. IT DOESN'T MEAN WE SIN WHEN WE ARE TEMPTED, BUT WHEN HE BEGAN TO THINK WITHIN HIS MIND HOW HE COULD ACQUIRE HER AND EVEN SEND SOMEONE TO GET HER, THAT'S WHEN HE BEGAN TO SIN WHEN HE BEGAN TO ACT ON A DESIRE THAT HE HAD EVERY OPPORTUNITY TO STOP BUT HE DID NO. SO YOU SEE, SIN, AND TEMPTATION - THOSE EXCUSES THAT SOMETIMES...OH, SOMEONE ELSE MADE ME DO IT OR IF SHE HADN'T OF BEEN BATHING ON TOP OF THAT HOUSE AND IF I HADN'T SEEN HER LIKE THAT THEN I NEVER WOULD'VE BEEN TEMPTED. ALWAYS LOOKING FOR SOMEONE ELSE RATHER THAN SIMPLY KNOWING THE WILL OF GOD AND OBEYING IT. YOU SEE, WE LIKE TO SOMETIMES MAKE EXCUSES AS WELL. AND WE SOMETIMES, THEREFORE DO NOT REALLY GIVE INTO THAT SIN. AND WHEN WE DON'T GIVE INTO THAT SIN, THE GOOD NEWS IS IF WE CAN BEAR WITH THOSE EXCUSES AND MAYBE SQUASH THEM AND NOT MAKE THOSE EXCUSES THEN WHAT CAN BE THE OUTCOME? VERSE 12 OF JAMES 1 SAYS, BLESSED IS HE WHO DOES WHAT? ENDURES TRIALS OR TEMPTATIONS BECAUSE WHEN HE ENDURES THEM HE'S BEEN APPROVED. AND THEN IT SAYS HE'LL RECEIVE A CROWN OF LIFE. IF WE CAN OVERCOME THE SIN TEMPTATIONS OF THIS LIFE AND IF WE CAN STOP MAKING ALL THE EXCUSES ABOUT WHO DID THIS AND WHO DID THAT AND SIMPLY STAND UP AND DO WHAT GOD SAYS, CAN WE BE SAVED? CERTAINLY. WILL WE? YES. WILL WE GET THAT REWARD, NOT ONLY IN THIS LIFE BUT THE LIFE TO COME? MOST CERTAINLY. GOD HAS PROMISED THOSE THINGS TO THE FAITHFUL. AND SO THE QUESTION WOULD BE: ARE WE FAITHFUL?

NOW I'D LIKE TO APPLY THESE THINGS TO WHAT TOOK PLACE ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST. IF YOU TURN IN YOUR BIBLES TO ACTS CHAPTER 2, YOU REMEMBER WITH ME THE DAY THE CHURCH WAS ESTABLISHED. BUT EVEN MORE THAN THAT YOU REMEMBER WHAT HAD JUST HAPPENED. THAT HAD KILLED THE SON OF GOD AND THEY WERE CUT IN THEIR HEART. THEY HAD SINNED. IN FACT, PETER HAS TOLD THEM, YOU HAVE SINNED. BLOOD IS ON YOUR HANDS. YOU HAVE JUST KILLED THE SON OF GOD. AND SO THEY WERE ENGAGED IN SIN, THEREFORE UNRIGHTEOUSNESS AND LAWLESSNESS. THEY HAD DONE WHAT WAS CONTRARY TO THE WILL OF GOD AND THEY WERE NOT FOLLOWING GOD. BUT WHEN THEY WERE MOVED AT THE REALIZATION OF THEIR SIN, WHAT DID THEY DO? THE SAME THING THAT YOU NEED TO DO - THE SAME THING THAT I'VE ALREADY DONE TO BECOME A CHILD OF GOD.

YOU MUST BE ABLE TO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT I NEED HELP AND THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT THEY DID WHEN THEY CRIED OUT TO PETER AND THE REST AND THEY SAID, WHAT MUST WE DO? IN VERSE 37. BUT THEN VERSE 38 NOTICE THE RESPONSE OF PETER. THESE PEOPLE THAT WERE STUCK IN SIN, THEY'RE LEGS WERE CAUGHT UP IN THAT QUICKSAND AND THEY COULDN'T GET OUT. WHAT MUST WE DO? AND HE SAYS, REPENT AND BE BAPTIZED. WHAT'S REPENTANCE? IT'S NOT ONLY AN ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF THAT SIN BUT IT'S A TURNING AWAY FROM THAT SIN. SO WHAT DID THEY NEED TO DO? THEY NEED TO BE WILLING TO ADMIT AND TO SAY, I HAVE SINNED - AND GET THAT SIN OUT IN THE OPEN - AND THEN SAY, I'M TURNING AWAY FROM IT. I'M NO LONGER GOING TO BE A MURDER. I'M NO LONGER GOING TO DO THOSE THINGS THAT I DID, AS I HAD DONE THEM TO JESUS. SO HE SAYS, REPENT. BUT THEN HE SAID, AND LET EVERYONE OF YOU BE BAPTIZED. DID THEY BELIEVE IN JESUS? SURE THEY DID OR THEY WOULDN'T HAVE SAID, WHAT MUST I DO TO BE SAVED? DID THEY REPENT? CERTAINLY THAT DID BECAUSE THE NEXT THING THAT WE LEARN A LITTLE BIT LATER IN THE TEXT IS THAT 3000 SOULS WERE ADDED TO THE CHURCH - MEN. BUT THEN IF YOU'LL NOTICE HERE IT SAYS: AND LET THEM BE BAPTIZED. WHY? WHY WERE THEY GOING TO BE BAPTIZED? TO BE WASHED IN THE BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST. AS ANANIAS TOLD PAUL IN ACTS 22:16 TO ARISE AND BE BAPTIZED AND WASH AWAY YOUR SINS. YOU SEE, IF YOU WANT TO GET RID OF SIN, AND YOU WANT OVERCOME TEMPTATION, AND YOU WANT TO BEGIN THAT WALK WITH GOD, YOU MUST CONFESS THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST - REPENT OF YOUR SINS AND BE BAPTIZED IN THE WATERY GRAVE. BY DOING THESE THINGS YOU HAVE PROVED YOUR FAITH IN GOD, AND THEREFORE THE BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST IS WHAT CLEANSES YOU. NOT MAN. NOT SOME CHURCH. AND THAT BLOOD IS ABLE TO MAKE YOU PRESENTABLE IN THE SIGHT OF GOD.

WOULDN'T YOU LIKE TO BEGIN THAT WALK TODAY AND BE RIGHT WITH GOD? WOULDN'T YOU LIKE TO STOP MAKING EXCUSES AND STOP BLAMING EVERYBODY ELSE AS TO WHY YOU ARE OR NOT RIGHT WITH GOD? YOU CAN MAKE THE CHOICE - YOU CAN GET RIGHT, AND YOU CAN BE BLESSED NOW, AND YOU CAN BE BLESSED ETERNALLY.

CLOSING COMMENTS

WHAT A BLESSING IT HAS BEEN TO JOIN TOGETHER IN THE THINGS OF GOD THIS MORNING. THANK YOU FOR DOING YOUR PART IN MAKING ALL THESE THINGS TO BE ACCORDING TO HIS WILL. AS ALWAYS, WE INVITE YOU BACK EVERY LORD’S DAY MORNING AT 7:30, AS WE COMMIT OURSELVES TO THIS OFFERING FOR GOD!

BUT FOR NOW, LET ME ASK IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS ABOUT TODAY’S LESSON? MAYBE, YOU WOULD LIKE A FREE TRANSCRIPT OR A CASSETTE TAPE OF THIS PROGRAM? POSSIBLY, WE COULD ASSIST YOU WITH FREE BIBLE MATERIALS OR CORRESPONDENCE COURSES? NO MATTER WHAT YOUR NEED IS, PLEASE CONTACT US AT THE FOLLOWING ADDRESS:

The Living Word 2540 N. Kansas Expressway Springfield, Mo. 65803

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THANKS BE TO GOD FOR THE OPPORTUNITY OF SALVATION THAT WE MIGHT OVERCOME THE TEMPTATION AND SINS OF THIS LIFE. HAVE YOU FOUND HOPE IN YOUR RISEN SAVIOR, JESUS CHRIST? THE FACT IS, HE IS THE ONLY WAY UNTO ETERNAL LIFE!