Program Air Date - 9-17-06



Good morning and welcome to the Living Word Program. It is a great honor to have you with us this morning for this time of worship to God. Thanks for choosing to be with us!

As always, it will be our privilege today to sing songs of praise to our God and to study from His perfect Word! I hope each of us will do our part to make this time together acceptable in His sight. Now, let's approach His throne in prayer.

(Short Prayer)

Isn't it wonderful to know all of the great things our God has done for us. This morning we want to begin with a song that reminds us of the guidance, care and protection which our Lord gives. So, won't you join in with the brethren at this time as we sing together, "Why I Love The Lord!"

(SONG # 1)


I was reading in the book of Revelation the other day and I came to a verse which reminded me of the magnificence of God. In chapter 22:13, the inspired John said, "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last." Think about the all encompassing words used here in this verse. They reflect some very important facts about our savior Jesus Christ.

Notice here that Christ is mentioned to be the very first and the very last, and the beginning and the end. In other words He is everything from start to finish. I think this is what David had in mind in Psalm 41, when he said, "Blessed be the LORD God of Israel From everlasting to everlasting! Amen and Amen," verse 13. It seems like this great man of God realized exactly who God was. But you might wonder, what does this beginning or everlasting mean. Well again, David considers this in Psalm 8:23, where he says, from everlasting means, "From the beginning, before there was ever an earth."

The New testament writers also dealt with this topic as they tried to help God's followers understand the everlastingness of Jesus Christ. In John 1:1-2, we read, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God." Verse three goes on to say, "All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made." This clearly tells us that our everlasting Jesus was in the beginning as God, with the Father God!

Another word which helps us to understand this same concept is "eternal!" Notice what Paul said in 1 Timothy 1:17, "Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen." Again we find that the Father and Son are equally eternal or everlasting, with no beginning and no end.

Now we need to mention the third personality of God, because the Bible also says that the Holy Spirit is God and is eternal. Read with me if you will from Hebrews 9:14, there it says, "how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?" It is clear in this verse that the Spirit of God is likewise eternal and considered as an important part of the God head.

So when we think about who our God really is and what He is all about, we must always remember that He is truly eternal and everlasting without beginning and without end. Only God could have this characteristic which makes Him stand out above all else that we have knowledge of. So the next time you read from verses like Matthew 28:19, which gives us the great commission, remember the fact that this God who saves us is truly a one of a kind and awesome one. That's why Jesus said, "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." Have you obeyed His Will or are you ready to make that commitment today?

Our topic of study this morning will again center around our "Walk with God." Our specific lesson today will focus on "Walking In Truth?" So, please stay with us and in a few minutes I will return with this study from God's Word. Now it's time to join in our second hymn of the day, the name of the song, "When We All Get To Heaven."

(SONG # 2)


Speaker: Ray Sullins

We're glad you've stayed with us today as we now go and consider together another great lesson from God's Word. Today, we're going to talk about "Walking With God." But yet today, our specific lesson in relationship to "Walking With God" will be the idea of "Walking in Truth."

I want you to begin with me there in the book of 3rd John. We find there an interesting discussion by the apostle John who certainly we are well aware of who was not only very close to the Lord, but one of the greatest workers, one of the most familiar workers of God, that is Jesus Christ, as He was on the earth. We might also notice there in 3rd John that John was addressing a man whose name was Gaius, and Gaius here seems to have been a man that certainly loved God and certainly was obedient. In fact, the text gives us a clear idea about who this man was. If you begin to read there with me in verse 1, he says, "The elder, to the beloved Gaius whom I love in truth." Here we have the idea of the elder to the beloved Gaius. Beloved, one that was dear to him, one that he cared for. In what? In the what? In the truth. That's what our topic is today, "Walking in the Truth." He says, "You are one whom I love because you are my beloved. You are close, but yet then again, I love you because of the truth."

Go on to verse 3 or 2 with me rather as we learn more. "Beloved," he again says, "I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health just as your soul prospers." Here we meet a man who not only is beloved of John, who is beloved because of his love for the truth, but we also learn here in verse 2 he is a spiritual man. How do we know that? John says, "I pray that you prosper physically the same way you are spiritually because you are prospering greatly in a spiritual way." So Gaius was a beloved friend of John. He was one here that we read who was very spiritual and had the things that he needed from God.

Verse 3 continues. "For I rejoice greatly when the brethren came and testified of truth that is in you." What is...? He is also a man of the truth. There was truth in Gaius. But notice also in verse 3, "Just as you walk in the truth." Gaius was a man who not only knew the truth, the verse here says he walked in the truth. John says, "I love you as a brother because you walk in the truth, because you walk in the truth. You know the truth and you do exactly what God said and therefore your soul is prospering. You spiritually are prospering and I know that God then will also bless you physically the same way He has blessed you spiritually."

He not only mentions the walk with God in truth once, but he also mentions it again if you'll read with me in verse 4. He says, "I have no greater joy than to hear...." Hear what John about Gaius? "To hear that my children walk in the truth." You see, we learned something else. Gaius was not only a beloved friend and brother of John, but he was a child in the faith. Evidently, John had been instrumental in converting Gaius and bringing him to Christ and now no doubt, through the example of John's life, he had become a minister or an evangelist himself, that is Gaius, following what he had learned from John. In here he says, "You are a child of mine who walks in the truth." How joyful! How exciting! How wondrous it is to know of one that you convert and then years down the road he is still walking in the truth. Walking in the things that... What is truth? You and I well know. There in John again, that's the gospel of John again, 17 and 17, it says, "Thy Word." It says God's Word is truth. Gaius, you walk in the truth and there's no greater joy that I have to know that you are walking in the Word of God than to know as we see in verse 4 that as a child of mine, you are still faithful. You are still walking in that Word, still walking in the truth. There's nothing that could be greater happiness, he said.

Well, he goes on in verse 5 to continue to help us to learn more about what Gaius was all about. What was this walk of truth? What was the Word of God telling him? What were some of the things that he did? We have a great example beginning in verse 5. Again, John says, "Beloved, one who is so dear to me and beloved to me," he says, "you do faithfully whatever you do." He says, "You're faithful in what you do." To who? "Your brethren." Gaius cared about his brothers, about his brothers and sisters. He was there to help them and to show love to them and care for them and to do whatever he could to see that they had the things that they needed. In fact, not only his brethren, but read on there, friends, he says, "Your brethren and strangers." You know we read many verses by Paul and others like Galatians 6:10 that we are to "do good to the household of faith, especially the household of faith, especially brethren, but then to all men." Here we have it again. He says, "You not only did good to brethren, not only did you walk in truth in relationship to your brethren and helping them, but also strangers, anybody you come in contact with, Gaius, they see God in you. You're walking in truth. You're walking in His Word. You're not just talking it. You're living it. Everyday you are doing what God commands.

Verse 6 continues. "Who have born witness of your love before the church if you send them forward on their journey in a manner worthy of God, you will do well." Here we find again Gaius, a man, who before the entire church is well-known, is faithful, walking in the truth and benevolent, benevolent with his brethren, benevolent with all people, and not just all people, but even missionaries. Do you hear that in there? Do you see that in there? Even those that visit the church such as Paul and others, even those that are coming around and who are, for the sake of God, doing what they are doing, he says, "You are benevolent." Do you think Paul might have received help at some time from Gaius or the church that Gaius was a part of? Well certainly. He says, "You know how to take care of your brethren and you don't just leave them without their needs. You know how to care. You know how to be hospitable and show that love."

Then he goes on there in verse 7 saying, "Because they went forth for his namesake, that is Jesus' sake, taking nothing from the Gentile." He says, "When people are around Gaius, they don't have to worry about getting money from the Gentiles or working in order that just their fellow man might help them." He says, "Gaius and the church that Gaius was a part was benevolent and faithful and helping and supporting those that needed help who were doing God's work." Now Gaius is a great example of one who walks in truth, not only for himself, but helping others and even being involved in propagating the truth.

He goes on in verse 8 to say, "We therefore ought to receive such that we may become fellow workers in the truth." We ought to do the same, he is saying. We ought to receive people the same way. We ought to help them that the Word of God might be accomplished and that it might get out to all mankind.

Now I want you to look over in Romans chapter 10 with me because it is there that we see the same idea by Paul. He says beginning in verse 14, "How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed and how do they believe in Him in whom they have not heard, and how shall they hear without a preacher?" Hear verse 15. "And how shall they preach unless they be sent?" You see Paul was saying that somebody has got to preach and somebody has got to send the preacher and somebody has got to help the preacher. Somebody has got to help the missionaries. John was saying the same thing. "Gaius, you are a faithful man walking in the truth and one of the ways I know that is outward and the church and the world sees is that you help the brethren in evangelism, in benevolence, in every way that they have need." He says, "You are faithful." How do we walk in the truth? The very same way. Living for God and outwardly showing that attitude of love for our brethren, for our fellow man, and for all those who need help whether it be in a spiritual matter or physical matter.

But then we see the other side of the coin, one walking in truth and one who does not. Diotrophes is mentioned there. One who on the other hand, when people coming into the church, missionaries or others, he doesn't want them to speak. He doesn't want them around. Why? It might somehow take his glory. He desired to have what? John says, "Preeminence," verse 9, and would not even receive men like John. Well, certainly He condemns this, one who would do wrong, one who would put people out of the church who are our brethren who ought to be there, who ought to have opportunity to spread the love of God. And then verse 11, he says, "Beloved, therefore do not imitate what is evil like Diotrophes. Do what is good. He who does good is of God. He who does evil is not seen of God." Here he says, "Gaius is good. Imitate goodness. Here is Diotrophes. Don't imitate that. Rather walk in (what?) truth, not in evilness like Diotrophes."

We find another verse which helps us with that idea if you'll turn just briefly over to the book of Philippians. In Philippians chapter 3, we find there the same ideas he says, "Brethren, join in following my example and note those who walk as you have the pattern." He says those that are walking in the what? Truth, imitate. But notice the next verse, verse 18, "For many walk of whom I have told you often and now tell you even weeping that they are enemies of the cross. There are those like Gaius who are faithful who walk in the truth, who do good and we should imitate their example because they are following the pattern, the truth of God, the Word of God, and then there are those who are enemies of the cross who are not walking in the truth, but are walking for themselves, who are willing to do what they can so that they might benefit and so that they might have control and that they might have power. So what do you do? Do you walk in truth? Do you walk in God and the Word of God or do you walk in that which is contrary to God, "in evil," which he states there?

I love also as he continues on in verse 12 because he mentions another example. "Here is somebody else you should follow," he says. "There was a man named as Dimetrius." He says, "Dimetrius also," in verse 12, "was a good testimony from all." And why was it Dimetrius had a good testimony? Look at verse 12 with me. "And from the truth itself and we also bear witness and you know that our testimony is truth." How do they know Dimetrius was faithful? He walked in the truth. He walked in love. He walked in obedience to the commands of God. He walked in benevolence. He walked in evangelism. He walked in all that he should do towards his brethren and his fellow man unto the Will of God Almighty. You see, Gaius, Dimitrius, all those who show us what the truth is all about, what we should do in order to be pleasing in His sight.

Now let us turn back to 2 John chapter 1. It deals with the same idea and there in verse 4 we read this about the truth. He says, "I rejoice greatly that I have found some of your children walking in (what?) the truth and have received commandment from the Father." What was it that made those of the elect lady in 2 John considered as being walking in truth? They followed the commands of God.

On in verse 6 he says, "You love the commands of God." You follow them and you should walk in them because when we walk in the truth, it is following the Word of God. It is walking in the commands of God. It is being obedient to God.

That's the charge today to walk in truth. Are you obeying God? Are you following His commands? Are you doing all those things that you can to illuminate Jesus Christ in your life knowing that if you are faithful and found faithful to the end, you will not only receive the great blessings of this life, but the great blessing of eternal life. I hope you'll turn to God and walk in truth just as He has commanded so that you might receive all of these wondrous and blessed promises.

(SONG # 3 - "Have Thine Own Way!")


Let me thank you again for choosing to be with us today for the Living Word program. I hope and trust, that together we have all benefited from this service to our Lord. Let me also invite you to join us every Lord's Day morning at 7:30 as we give this time to our Creator.

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Are you walking in the truth as God commands? Let's all study more every day to make sure we know God's truth, that we may obey it unto salvation!

(Program closing)