THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT
Program Air Date – 12-13-09
LESSON TITLE: “BETTER THINGS: BETTER TO BE WITH CHRIST”
Thank you for joining us this morning. Let me welcome you to the program. The Living Word is a work of our Lord, dedicated to doing God’s Will in His Way! As always, it will be our privilege today to sing songs of praise and to study from His Word. In these acts of worship, may we all be encouraged, but ultimately may we each praise God according to the sacrifices to offer toward His Throne. It will also be our honor this morning to speak with God through prayer. Will you bow with me as we talk to our creator?
Well, let’s get right to our first song of the morning! Won’t you join in with the congregation at this time as we sing together, “Is It for Me Dear Savior?”
(SONG # 1)
Think for a moment this morning about just how great we have it as Americans. Isn’t it wonderful to be a citizen of the greatest and most blessed country on this earth? Furthermore, think about our homes and where we live. Isn’t it also equally great to have a family and to be a part of a social structure which was planned and ordained by God Himself?
Now read with me from Ephesians 2:19, where Paul talks of another great blessing we have through Jesus Christ. There we read, “Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God.” Praise is to God for this glorious truth! Not only are we members of a great country and a part of a physical or earthly family, but best of all we are citizens in the household of God! The verse proclaims us as saints and members of the house which God built. Isn’t that wonderful? Isn’t that precious to know?
Continue with me at the next verse, 20, as it goes on to tell us why we have this blessed opportunity and from where it is founded. There we read, “Having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone, in whom the whole building, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.” Thanks be to God and His Son, for it is through Christ that we are a part of that precious household or family of God. For Christ alone is the “chief cornerstone;” in which the whole building, temple and family are joined together in.
Now the question you must ask - are you a part of the family? Are you in the household of God? Have you done what God requires that you be considered a part of His precious family? If you have not obeyed God and done what He commands in His Word, respond today before it’s everlastingly too late!
Finally, let’s turn our thoughts to our main study of the day in which some of these questions will be answered. We are still in our series dealing with “Better Things.” As far as our specific lesson of the day we will focus on the topic, “Better To Be With Christ!” So please stay with us this morning and after our next song together, we will lead us in our main thoughts of the day.
As far as our guest speaker of the day, we are happy to again have brother Jerry Sullins. Brother Sullins directs the Bible Institute of Missouri right here in Springfield. We thank him for being with us today. Now it’s time to join in our second song of the morning, the name of this hymn, “Is Thy Heart Right With God.”
(SONG # 2)
By Jerry Sullins
We would like to welcome you to “The Living Word” broadcast this morning and we certainly appreciate your inviting us into your home. We pray that what is said today may cause you to be able to know more of what God’s Will is for you and challenge you as well as it will challenge all of us to get our lives in tune with His Holy Word.
For the past few weeks we’ve been involved in a great study that has come out of the book of Hebrews, basically a study that points out the greatness of our Lord and Savior above so many things: the angels of Heaven, Moses the great lawgiver, the law itself, and so many other aspects of how Christ should be personified and is personified and how he should have the preeminence over all things as is pointed out in Paul’s wonderful epistle to the church at Colossi.
Now this morning, we’re going to try to do somewhat of a summary if you want to call it that, but I would like to reflect upon Jesus Christ our Lord and how He is really the only source where we can go today for those things that we need most in this life. When Jesus was with His disciples on one occasion and with a great multitude as is recorded in John chapter 6, one of the most significant events happened that ever happened in His life. As you know, He had just fed the 5,000 there in chapter 6, 5,000 men including women and children. The multitude actually wanted to take him by force and to make him a king. Well perceiving that this was going to happen, He decided that He would send His disciples around the northern edge of the Sea of Galilee. It was on that night that He walked across the water and He went across the water and He met them on the other side. The multitude also happened to follow, and were also on the other side. There He began to teach them great lessons that had not been taught to any man seeking to show them what it meant to be a disciple. That lesson was, or one of those lessons was that unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood then I will have no part with you. Now the multitude was unable evidently to understand just exactly what Jesus was saying and so many from that point turned away and then He turned to His disciples and He made this statement. “Do you also want to go away?” The disciples spoke up and said this, “Lord, to whom shall we go? For thou has the words of life eternal and we believe and we are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the Living God.”
Now mankind today has a real problem and that is that all of mankind is constantly in a search to how he can solve the problems of his life. We live in an ever changing cultural situation throughout this world. Our culture has been influenced by humanistic doctrines, that is secular humanism. We’ve seen the decay and are seeing the decay of our moral system right before our eyes. Philosophical principles have guided the lives of so many people in this world and throughout the past few decades even from the 1930’s because of the humanistic doctrine.
We have had such philosophies show up as, “I’m okay. You’re okay.” People believe that they can do anything and everything that they want to in this life and you have no right to challenge them. As long you do what you want to do and leave them alone and allow them to do what they want to do, then everything is okay.
People have demanded in our society today that they are allowed to do such things as abort innocent lives even before birth.
We also recognize that there are people who uphold alternative lifestyles. In all of these things, we see that man is evidently searching for something or rather for someone to help him guide his life.
Circumstances are becoming so difficult in life we see serious illnesses among our family and friends and loved ones in Christ. We see the loss of lives. We see the loss of loved ones. In all of this, man needs someone or something in which to direct his life. Also when people realize their sinfulness, they experience some of the heaviest burdens of life due to the guilt of their sin. All men and women have problems that they can’t deal with. Man is searching for the purpose and meaning of life, for those things for which he can aspire, something to live for other than everyday responsibilities, something or someone beyond himself. Man wants to love and be loved. In all these things, man seems to be searching for the real purpose of life and for aid and assistance in this life for those things that trouble us so.
Well where can we go? In fact, the disciples said, “To whom shall we go?” I propose to you that question this morning. Where can you go to satisfy the many needs of your life? Is it possible for you to turn to the philosophies of man? Can you find those answers that you’re searching for in what we might call “Godless atheism?” Well surely none of you this morning would believe that you can find the answer to all of these problems of life in living the life of someone who does not even believe there is a God.
Well the scripture answers or at least tells us about those types of people in Psalm 14 verse 1. It says, “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’”
The answer to life’s questions, the answer to the needs that one has in life is not found in Godless atheism. It is also not found in Godless secular humanism which has been taught in our society and in our schools even before 1933 but especially since the humanist manifesto in 1933 and readapted in 1973. Those doctrines have permeated our society saying that there really is no God, that actually mankind is a God within himself.
So is that where we can find the answer to life’s problems? When we look around our sick society today, the sickness that we see in our society is due to the adaptation of the principles of secular humanism that of course is one of the greatest tools of Satan himself to destroy our society. At the root of every problem in our schools and in our society is found one of the adaptations of the principles of this Godless, humanist position that people take in our society today.
Can we look to the religions of man? Well certainly not. We need to look to what God wants us to do. Man can create many religions. Do you know that in the country of India itself it has close to if not more than one billion people now? There are over 300 million different gods and yet we still find man searching for the answers. The answers are found in the Bible as we will show in a few moments. Should we turn to worldly achievement? Is that where we should go? Will that give us what we need in this life?
You know it was Jesus who said Himself in Matthew 16 verse 26, “For what shall a man be profited if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul?”
And then in the book of Luke, Jesus said that, “A man’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things which he possesses.”
I know you’ve heard stories like this before, but this is a true story about a man who had achieved almost everything that he wanted to achieve in this life. He was the CEO of one of the largest companies in the United States of America. He wasn’t worried about money or how he was going to gain money. He had all he needed. He had a big house and he had a yacht and he had everything that man might want to have that money could buy. But yet in the achieving of all of these things, he lost the love and the respect of his wife and his children because of his lifestyle. He was divorced by his wife and he was a lonely man sitting in a house that he had possessed because of his desire for the things of this world. Even more we see how true the statement is. “For what shall a man be profited if he gains the whole world and loses his own soul?”
Just this week we have heard of someone, that is Tiger Woods himself, who had a lot of fame and a lot of fortune and he may still have some of it left, but he transgressed according to his own words. He left those standards which were based upon, by the way, people; they were based upon God’s principles. He began to do things in his life that were not correct. No matter what man might say about it, God would have and does condemn such actions that he took in his life. He had all the vain glory in life that one would want.
For John said as you might know in 1 John chapter 2 verse 15 that, “We should love not the world, neither the things that are in the world, for that that is of the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the vain glory of life is not of the Father but of the world,” and it goes on to say that those who do those things will not have everlasting life. They are not even going to have that abundant life that Jesus has promised in this life. Why? Because they have forsaken those eternal principles that are laid out for us in God’s eternal Word.
So can we find it in a possession of the things of this world? Certainly not! Well can we turn to our own intellect? Well the prophet said a long time ago in Jeremiah chapter 10 verse 23, “The way of man is not in himself, for it is not in man that walketh to direct his own footsteps.” Well what about the intellect of man? Again, in the Old Testament in Proverbs chapter 20 verse 24, it says, “A man’s steps are of the Lord. How then can a man understand his own way?” It is God who created us and it is God who before the foundation of the world made it possible and desired that through His Son that we would have the opportunity for eternal life and we would be able to enjoy that abundant life.
So back again to the question that was asked by Jesus, “Would you also go away?” And the disciple answered, “To whom shall we go?” For thou has the words of eternal life and we believe and we are sure that thou art that Christ the Son of the Living God.
So where will you go? Will you go to the philosophies of man? Will you go to what you can receive from fulfilling the ambitions that you might have in this life for the gaining of worldly possessions? Or will you go to the true source, a source that will assist you with all of the problems that we have mentioned that might be in this life and that is to Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
In John chapter 10 verse 10 Jesus said, “I have come that you might have life and that you might have it more abundantly.” See that life that we all need is found only in Jesus Christ. He is the only one, the only place where we can receive help and assistance for all of the needs that we might have.
Jesus Himself said in John 14 verse 6, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No man cometh unto the Father but by Me.”
What a beautiful statement the apostle made in 2 Timothy chapter 1 verse 12 where he said, “I know in whom I believe and know that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.”
Even the apostle Paul in Philippians chapter 4 verse 13… Do you remember that beautiful statement? He said, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
Over and over and over again we see that Christ is that solid foundation upon which we can build everything in this life. What home would suffer such hard things that take place in so many homes in our country that bases its foundation upon Jesus Christ? If the rules were followed, if the principles were followed that Jesus laid down and also the holy apostles laid down, would 50% of our marriages be ended in divorce? Well certainly not. When the circumstances in life seem unbearable, let us know as Christians that as the apostle Paul said in Romans 8:28, “We know that all things will work together for our good to those who love God and who are called according to His purpose.” So whatever may happen in our lives, we have the assurance that Christ will be there, and Christ will not only protect us but He will guide us and strengthen us through those very difficult times. When the guilt of sin is seeking to destroy us, we know that through Christ we can have relief for as is stated, “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God,” Romans 3:23. But we see in Romans 6:23,”The wages of sin might be death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” Then when the end of life comes as we see in 1 Thessalonians 4 verses 13 and 18, the Lord will be there for us and He being the forerunner, He being the one who has entered once into the grave, has broken those bonds of Hades and has made it possible for us to be victorious over the grave and over Hades. As Paul said in 1 Corinthians 15 verses 55-57, “Oh death, where is your sting? Oh grave, where is your victory?” Then it ended that chapter by saying, “But thanks be to God that giveth us the victory in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
So the question to you this morning, my friend, my brother and sister in Christ: Do you also want to go away? Where would you go? I really don’t know of another place in this life where I can go and receive assistance for all the needs that I might have in this life. I don’t know of another place that I can go for true peace in this life that to the true Prince of Peace Himself. As Jesus said in Luke 6:46, “Why call ye Me ‘Lord, Lord’ and do not the things which I say?”
I encourage you today to put on the Lord Jesus Christ through faith, repentance, confession and baptism into Christ for the remission of your sins. Jesus wants to be your Prince of Peace. Now it is your decision whether or not you will make that decision to say, “Yes, Lord, I know where I can go and I want you to be my Prince of Peace.” Let us pray fervently. Let us pray diligently, but not only us but our loved ones and those of this world will find that true source of peace, Jesus Christ the Son of God.
(SONG # 3 - “Jesus Calls Us”)
Let me thank you again for choosing to be with us today, in this offering to God. I know our time together has been an encouragement and blessing to all of us. We invite you back every Sunday morning at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this service of God!
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Isn’t it wonderful to be a part of the glorious family of God! May we always live and do those things that cause us to be considered as a part of the wondrous and precious body, established by our God!