3ABN Australia Homecoming

Knowing God As He Pursues The Lost

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript



Series Code: HCAU

Program Code: HCAU180017A

00:01 Music...
00:20 Welcome to 3ABN Australia Homecoming.
00:24 Music...
00:29 Welcome to the 3ABN Australia Homecoming 2018,
00:36 our second-last sermon,
00:39 this has gone so fast.
00:41 It really has,
00:43 it's kind of a sad thing, isn't it?
00:44 There's a lot of preparation for this
00:46 but what a blessing it has been,
00:47 we want to hear a hearty "Amen" from you.
00:49 Audience: Amen.
00:50 I know that I've been blessed,
00:51 Jill and I, and the team that has come from 3ABN USA,
00:54 what a blessing it is to be here
00:56 and to meet with each one of you, it's encouraging.
00:58 So, this is number 12.
00:59 Is it really?
01:01 Yes, and that's just amazing
01:03 I just hope that everybody is...
01:05 been as blessed as we wanted them to
01:07 and you're getting to know God better.
01:10 You're getting to know different aspects of God
01:13 and to appreciate Him and to grow closer to Him
01:16 because that's what we're trying to do.
01:18 We want people to have eternal life
01:20 and to have eternal life, you need to know God personally
01:23 so He can put His character into you.
01:26 Yeah, that's really important,
01:28 for breakfast this morning, I had a Weet-Bix.
01:31 That's quite an Australian thing I understand.
01:34 You know, not only do we want to feed ourselves physically
01:37 with wonderful food from Australia,
01:39 there's good food in USA as well,
01:41 we want to feed ourselves from the Word of God
01:44 and I think that's so important,
01:46 I appreciate all the messages
01:47 that we have heard here, Rosemary,
01:49 all of Camp Meeting... all of this Homecoming...
01:51 it's been about studying God's Word...
01:53 immersing ourselves in the Word of God
01:54 because in it, there are so many treasures that we can find.
01:57 That's right and that's the way we get to know God.
01:59 Well, before we have our Speaker come on,
02:02 we have Kevin Petrie again,
02:04 he's a Lecturer at Avondale College
02:06 and I really am blessed when Kevin sings
02:10 because I find his voice very soothing
02:13 and he's going to be singing a song called, "Missing Me"
02:16 and who's speaking today?
02:19 Today, we're again blessed with Geoff Youlden
02:22 who is the Union Evangelist
02:24 and his passion is to share the Word of God with others.
02:27 And he's good at it.
02:28 Oh, he's really good and his message today is,
02:31 "Knowing God as He pursues the Lost. "
02:34 So, we'll listen to Kevin and then Geoff will come
02:37 and bless us with a message from God, thank you.
02:40 Pause...
02:49 Music...
03:13 I wonder what He thinks of
03:17 as He looks at His nail-pierced hands,
03:20 Does He think of all He suffered
03:24 as His blood fell like the sand,
03:30 And the scars upon His temple
03:33 made from thorns pressed on His head,
03:37 Does He think of all He went through
03:41 as a lamb to slaughter led
03:47 But I know He sees my face
03:50 And He does recall my name
03:54 He remembers all His love for me
03:58 That cost Him so much pain
04:02 He remembers how eternity
04:07 Would somehow never be
04:09 Quite the same for heaven
04:13 Because God would be missing me.
04:20 Music...
04:44 Hands reached out to strike
04:47 All with vented rage
04:51 Animals for cruelty
04:55 Satan's anger for all age
04:59 music...
05:00 Spitting out their venom
05:05 A hatred born elsewhere
05:07 Does it come back to His memory
05:12 How He was treated there
05:17 But I know He sees my face
05:21 And He does recall my name
05:25 He remembers all His love for me
05:29 That cost Him so much pain
05:33 He remembers how eternity
05:37 Would somehow never be
05:40 Quite the same for heaven
05:44 Because God would be missing me.
05:50 Music...
05:52 Because I know He sees my face
05:55 And He does recall my name
05:59 He remembers all His love for me
06:03 That caused Him so much pain
06:07 He remembers how eternity
06:10 Would somehow never be
06:14 Quite the same for heaven
06:18 Because God would be missing me
06:25 He remembers how eternity
06:29 Would somehow never be
06:33 Quite the same for heaven
06:37 Quite the same for heaven...
06:44 Because God would be missing
06:49 me...
06:53 music...
07:05 Pause...
07:10 Just recently, I was visiting a business
07:13 and when I went inside the front doors,
07:18 the desk was in front of me and up above the desk
07:21 was the Mission Statement of the business
07:24 and I read it with interest and...
07:27 of course we've all been to businesses...
07:29 we've all been involved with Organizations
07:32 that have mission statements
07:34 in which they try to crystalize the purpose of their being.
07:38 Jesus had a mission statement too
07:43 and I'd like to invite you to open your Bibles
07:45 to that Mission Statement over in Luke the 19th chapter.
07:49 Luke the 19th chapter and we'll notice His Mission Statement.
07:53 Pause...
07:57 Chapter 19 and verse 10 where Jesus says,
08:02 "For the Son of man is come
08:04 to seek and to save that which was lost. "
08:10 Pause...
08:13 I want to submit to you that that's Jesus' Mission Statement
08:16 pause...
08:18 crystallized into just a few words.
08:20 Pause...
08:22 To seek and to save that which was lost.
08:26 Pause...
08:30 Every great work that's ever done in this world
08:34 has someone who has great passion.
08:37 It doesn't matter whether it's a business...
08:41 setting up a business...
08:43 running an Organization... the Church...
08:47 whenever something is successful,
08:50 you will look behind it and see that the person
08:53 that organized it... that's behind it
08:56 has a deep passion for it
08:58 pause...
09:00 and any significant accomplishment
09:03 will have that deep passion
09:05 and Christianity... if it's going to be successful
09:09 must be driven by people with a deep passion.
09:12 Pause...
09:14 The message of the three angels of Revelation chapter 14,
09:18 "To every nation, kindred, tongue and people... "
09:21 I would like to suggest to you
09:23 that that has to be driven by people with passion.
09:27 Pause...
09:29 Unfortunately, we live in an age
09:32 in which passion has been diluted by worldliness
09:36 and today, all of us are affected by prosperity.
09:40 Pause...
09:44 And there's a tendency for us to look after ourselves
09:47 and then, our passion comes second.
09:51 Pause...
09:54 A new convert told me that he went to his church
09:58 and he was enthusiastic about
10:02 spreading the gospel that he'd just learned
10:04 pause...
10:06 and some older member said to him,
10:08 "Just settle down...
10:10 in a few years' time, you'll be just like the rest of us. "
10:16 Audience: Laughter...
10:18 That's a tragedy really, isn't it?
10:19 Audience: It is.
10:20 I mean, the angels, I think, are going to over their epithet
10:25 pause...
10:27 and that would be a sad angel that does it.
10:30 Light but no heat...
10:32 and for passion, we must have both.
10:36 I want to read you a modern parable.
10:40 See if things that you understand and know...
10:44 you can identify with this parable.
10:46 Pause...
10:48 On a dangerous sea coast where shipwrecks often occur,
10:51 there was a crude little life-saving station.
10:55 The building was just a hut and there was only one boat
11:00 but the few devoted members
11:02 kept a constant watch over the sea
11:03 and with no thought for themselves or their safety,
11:07 they went out day and night
11:09 tirelessly searching for the lost.
11:11 Many lives were saved by this wonderful life-saving station
11:16 so it became famous.
11:18 Some of those who were saved
11:21 and various others in the surrounding area,
11:23 wanted to become associated with the Station
11:25 and give their time and money and effort
11:28 for the support of its work.
11:29 New boats were bought and new crews were trained
11:33 and the little Life-saving Station grew.
11:36 Some of the members of the Life-saving Station were unhappy
11:40 that the building was so crude and poorly equipped.
11:44 They felt, a more comfortable place should be provided
11:48 as the first refuge of those who were saved from the sea.
11:51 So, they replaced the emergency cots and beds
11:55 and put together furniture in their large building.
11:58 Now the Life-saving Station became a popular gathering place
12:03 for its members
12:04 and they decorated it beautifully
12:06 and furnished it exquisitely
12:09 because they used it as a sort of a club.
12:12 Fewer members were now interested in going out to sea
12:16 on life-saving missions
12:18 so they hired lifeboat crews to do that work for them.
12:21 The life-saving motif still provided
12:24 in the club's decorations
12:26 and there was a liturgical lifeboat in the room
12:28 where club initiations took place.
12:31 About this time, a large ship was wrecked off the coast
12:35 and the hired crews brought in loads of cold,
12:39 wet and drowned people.
12:41 They were dirty and sick
12:43 and the beautiful new club considerably was messed up.
12:46 So the Property Committee
12:49 immediately had a shower house built outside the club
12:52 where the victims of shipwrecks
12:54 could be cleaned up before coming inside.
12:56 Pause.
12:59 At the next meeting, there was a split in the club membership.
13:01 Most of the members
13:02 wanted to stop the life-saving activity altogether
13:05 because it was unpleasant
13:06 and a hindrance to the normal social life of the club.
13:10 Some members insisted upon life-saving
13:13 as their primary purpose.
13:14 They pointed that that they were still called
13:17 a Life-saving Station
13:19 but they were finally voted down
13:21 and told that if they wanted to save the lives
13:24 of various kinds of people
13:25 that were shipwrecked in those waters,
13:27 they could begin their own Life-saving Station
13:30 down the coast... which they did.
13:32 As the years went by
13:35 the new station experienced the same changes
13:37 that occurred in the old...
13:38 it evolved into a club...
13:40 and yet another Life-saving Station was founded
13:43 and history continued to repeat itself
13:46 and if you visit that coast today,
13:48 you'll find a number of exclusive clubs along the shore.
13:51 Shipwrecks are still frequent in those waters
13:55 and most of the people drown.
13:59 There's a deep message for those of us
14:02 who belong to God's church in that story
14:05 because there are alarming similarities.
14:09 I'd like you to take your Bibles again
14:12 and read Jeremiah chapter 9 with me
14:15 and the first verse,
14:16 Jeremiah chapter 9 and verse 1
14:19 and here is an interesting statement made by Jeremiah,
14:23 of course, Jeremiah is often known
14:25 as the weeping prophet isn't he?
14:27 And this verse would be supportive of that,
14:32 look at Jeremiah chapter 9, verse 1.
14:34 "Oh that my head were waters,
14:37 and my eyes a fountain of tears,
14:40 that I might weep day and night
14:43 for the slain of the daughter of my people!"
14:45 Pause...
14:49 You know, that emotion is very, very foreign to us today,
14:52 very foreign.
14:55 You know, if you start to get excited about things,
14:59 people begin to think that
15:01 maybe you're bordering on being a fanatic.
15:03 "You know, you've just got to be peaceful and quiet
15:07 and don't get involved with emotion. "
15:10 When I read Jeremiah, his eyes, he said, are full of tears.
15:15 "I just don't have enough tears... " he's saying here
15:18 "to contain my sorrow. "
15:20 Pause...
15:23 And as I said, that's very, very foreign to us.
15:26 I, over the years, and I'm sure, some of you
15:29 would be able to quote me stories like
15:32 I'm going to share with you
15:33 where people have left the church
15:38 because of trivial bad things...
15:42 for example, I know some people who get upset
15:44 because someone sits in the seat
15:46 that they normally sit in in church.
15:48 Audience: Laughter.
15:49 It's true,
15:51 "You know, I have my seat just up there,
15:52 everyone knows that it's my seat,
15:55 I sit there every week.
15:56 And someone comes in and sits in their seat,
16:01 or, they do something in the church and... and... and...
16:05 we're very grateful for what they do
16:07 but no one recognizes it,
16:09 no one says anything to them
16:12 and they get put out as a result of it.
16:15 Pause...
16:16 And in some churches, it might be like here,
16:19 I have a certain parking spot out there that I always park in,
16:23 it's just close to the toilets and it's close to the...
16:25 and if it rains, I can get in quickly
16:27 and someone has parked their car there today.
16:31 Audience: Laughter.
16:33 And I get my nose out of joint
16:35 and I want to leave the church,
16:38 well, you know, we smile but I tell you, it's tragic.
16:41 When I went to Edinborough
16:44 and those of you who've been to Edinborough, Scotland,
16:46 pause...
16:48 so many famous things in Edinborough...
16:51 the code of the Royal Mile...
16:53 that's the mile... I don't know whether it's an exact mile
16:57 but they call it, "The Royal Mile"
16:59 between two castles.
17:01 The Edinborough Castle... on the top end
17:04 and down the bottom end is Holyrood Castle
17:07 pause...
17:09 and you may know that Queen Mary Queen of Scots
17:12 Catholic Queen Mary
17:15 was imprisoned in Holyrood Castle for a period.
17:19 Now she was the... the queen
17:22 when John Knox was the Reformer in Scotland.
17:27 Now, John Knox founded the Presbyterian Church,
17:31 I don't know whether he set out to do that
17:34 but that's how the Presbyterian Church was established.
17:37 I was brought up in the Presbyterian Church
17:40 so I have a little bit of oatmeal porridge
17:43 and Scottish in my background too, you see,
17:47 pause...
17:48 but what impressed me is that Queen Mary
17:52 said that she feared more... the sermons more of John Knox
17:59 than all the armies in Europe.
18:01 Pause...
18:03 Now that means that he must have been
18:05 a very, very lively preacher, wouldn't you think?
18:08 In fact, someone said,
18:10 "So mighty was he in his yearning for lost souls
18:14 that it was thought
18:15 that he would break the pulpit into bits. "
18:18 Audience: Laughter.
18:19 So what does it indicate when he was up the front?
18:21 You think he just stood there passively
18:24 and had a little chat to everyone?
18:26 That's not John Knox.
18:28 Pause...
18:30 You read some of his books
18:32 pause...
18:34 and he thundered against the apostate church in those days
18:39 and he turned Scotland around
18:43 and made them "Pro... testants" well, Protestants.
18:47 Then there was John Wesley who, it is said,
18:53 saved England from the revolution like France had
18:58 because of his preaching
19:00 and stirring the social conscience in England.
19:03 He travelled 350,000 kilometers in his life
19:10 mostly on foot but on horse as well.
19:15 Pause.
19:17 He gave away 200,000 dollars.
19:20 Now you think of it, that's the end of the 1700s
19:23 200,000 dollars... huge amount!
19:27 And he lived in a most careful way.
19:32 Never spent a single penny more than he had to.
19:36 He dressed very simply.
19:39 He preached two-and-a-half thousand sermons in his life
19:44 and he stirred the soul of England.
19:47 I went down there to Bristol in England
19:50 and there you can see the monument
19:52 that's been erected to John Wesley
19:54 who used to get up and preach at 4 a. m. in the morning
19:58 and he would be preaching to the coal miners
20:01 who were going to go down into the coal mines.
20:04 Now, those of you who have lived in England
20:08 and been to England in the winter
20:09 will know how bitterly cold the place gets.
20:12 Pause...
20:14 How the British live there, I don't know.
20:16 Audience: Laughter.
20:17 But they successfully do.
20:20 It's so bitterly cold
20:22 and the crowd egged on by those who were opposed
20:28 to what Wesley was teaching,
20:29 mainly the popular church in England,
20:31 encouraged those who were the dissidents among the group
20:37 to pick up rotten eggs and tomatoes
20:41 and as he was preaching, they would throw them at him.
20:45 Pause.
20:46 You know, we think sometimes
20:48 we get a little bit of opposition,
20:49 but I want to tell you
20:51 it's nothing compared to what those amazing men
20:55 who have lived before
20:56 and to my mind, John Wesley was the greatest of the Reformers
20:59 pause...
21:01 and we have a lot in common with what John Wesley taught.
21:06 He had a passion for the lost
21:08 and I... every time I read about Wesley,
21:11 I pray a prayer that God will give me the same passion...
21:15 the same conviction...
21:17 some of the ability that Wesley had...
21:22 in order to be able to reach the lost
21:26 and to lead them to Jesus.
21:28 I think of George Whitfield.
21:31 He was a contemporary of Wesley.
21:35 George Whitfield had such zeal
21:38 that he lived in patched clothing.
21:40 Pause.
21:42 Often during the night,
21:45 he would spend all night in prayer
21:47 agonizing with God to give him the Holy Spirit
21:50 so he could reach more people
21:52 and those who were writing up his biography,
21:56 will tell you that he would wipe away the sweat
22:01 from his forehead in the middle of winter in Bristol
22:07 because of his deep passion for the lost.
22:12 John Newton who wrote "Amazing Grace"
22:17 said, "I don't know who is the second best
22:20 preacher in the world
22:21 but I certainly know who was the best...
22:23 George Whitfield... "
22:26 and he was an amazing man.
22:29 Then I think of the passion and the commitment
22:32 that James and Ellen White had.
22:36 It would do us good to read some of the early works...
22:41 she lived not far from here
22:43 pause...
22:45 known as that little old lady that did so much good
22:49 in the neighborhood...
22:50 pause
22:53 lived very frugally.
22:54 Then I think of John Loughborough
22:58 and Joseph Bates
23:01 who sold his ship to advance the cause of Christ.
23:06 Everything that he had, he put into the cause of Christ
23:10 and when I read about our pioneers...
23:13 those intrepid men and women,
23:15 pause...
23:17 I am forced to bow my head in shame.
23:21 When I think of the passion and the conviction
23:26 that each of those people had
23:29 to advance this cause,
23:31 pause...
23:33 and often the thing that concerns me today
23:35 is that we're still living off the fruits
23:39 of those who have lived before
23:43 and I wonder what type of legacy
23:46 that we're going to leave for the generation to follow.
23:49 Pause...
23:52 Amazing people...
23:54 pause...
23:55 O for that flame of living fire
23:59 which shone so bright in the saints of old;
24:04 which bade their souls to heaven aspire,
24:08 Calm in distress, in danger bold!
24:13 Remember, Lord, the ancient days;
24:17 Renew Thy work, Thy grace restore;
24:21 And while to Thee our hearts we raise,
24:25 On us Thy Holy Spirit pour.
24:29 There's another hymn that we need to sing often.
24:33 Pause...
24:35 You know what I love about the hymns
24:37 pause...
24:40 compared to many of the songs that are composed in our day,
24:44 is the fact that most of the hymns...
24:46 if you check the stories are written by men, usually,
24:50 but some women too... some amazing women...
24:52 who have written experiences and they've put them into words.
24:59 Pause...
25:02 you take that hymn, "God moves in a mysterious way"
25:08 that man was going down to commit suicide
25:11 and his horse lost the way
25:13 and as a result of that
25:16 he believed that Lord had his hand over his life
25:18 and he wrote: God moves in a mysterious way.
25:21 Pause...
25:23 That song, "It is well with my soul"
25:26 is a song of experience,
25:29 of a man who lost his daughters in the sea,
25:34 you know the story...
25:35 pause...
25:38 devastated...
25:40 any parent that's lost a child
25:43 pause...
25:48 can identify with the emotions
25:52 that would have been associated
25:54 with that man
25:58 and he's put it into words and we still sing it,
26:02 "It is well with my soul. "
26:04 Pause...
26:07 That's why the hymns are going to last until Jesus comes
26:10 and we'll still be singing them in the next generation.
26:14 We need to tell our young people about those stories
26:18 to remind them...
26:20 to instill in them a passion for the truth.
26:27 Now, Jesus also had amazing passion,
26:32 I want to read to you some of that passion
26:34 over in Matthew chapter 9.
26:35 Matthew the 9th chapter
26:37 if you will turn with me please,
26:40 Matthew chapter 9 and verse 35.
26:43 Matthew 9 and verse 35.
26:47 Pause...
26:53 "Then Jesus went out to all the cities and villages,
26:57 teaching in their synagogues,
26:59 preaching the gospel of the kingdom,
27:00 and healing every sickness...
27:02 every disease among the people. "
27:04 But when He saw the multitudes... "
27:07 what does the next line say?
27:08 "He was moved with... " what?
27:10 "compassion... "
27:12 What does that mean?
27:13 What does it mean that Jesus was moved with compassion
27:16 when He saw the multitude...
27:18 as it goes on to say,
27:20 "because they were weary and scattered,
27:24 like sheep having no shepherd.
27:26 Then He said to the disciples, 'The harvest truly is plentiful,
27:31 but the laborers are few.
27:34 Please pray... the Lord of the harvest
27:36 to send out laborers into the harvest. '"
27:39 There's the appeal that Jesus is saying to us,
27:41 "Pray that God would lay upon people a burden to preach. "
27:45 because the harvest is ready. "
27:48 I don't know of a time in... in history
27:51 when the harvest is not more ready to be reaped
27:53 than it is at the moment.
27:54 You know, when I became a Christian
27:57 and understood these three messages...
27:59 you heard about an earthquake every now and again,
28:02 I'd never heard of the word, "Tsunami" when I was growing up,
28:06 wouldn't have known what it was.
28:08 Earthquakes...
28:11 everywhere... almost weekly...
28:16 and then what about all the fires and the droughts
28:20 and the floods...
28:21 almost every day there's some serious issue
28:25 going on somewhere in the world, isn't that right?
28:28 If that not ought to wake us up.
28:31 When we read the Bible,
28:35 and Jesus here says that these things are going to take place
28:41 and what we're seeing is not something new
28:43 because there's always been those issues in the world
28:46 but what we're seeing is the intensity of those things.
28:49 They're gathering momentum.
28:51 Pause...
28:53 And Jesus is saying, "The harvest is ready... "
28:58 but the problem is the reapers...
29:01 God help and lay upon people today
29:05 a burden to share the gospel.
29:07 Pause...
29:09 In fact, Jesus told the three parables
29:11 over in Luke chapter 15,
29:14 I would just like you to have a look at these three parables
29:17 because they again emphasize what Jesus is saying here
29:22 about the lost.
29:24 This is Luke the 15th chapter and verse 1, it says,
29:27 pause...
29:29 "Then all the tax collectors and the sinners
29:31 drew near to Him to hear Him. "
29:32 It's interesting the people came to hear Jesus, isn't it?
29:35 Pause...
29:36 "And the Pharisees and the scribes complained... "
29:40 they are the critics...
29:42 "This Man receives sinners and eats with them. "
29:46 So He spoke this parable to them, saying:
29:48 "What man of you, having a hundred sheep,
29:50 if he loses one of them,
29:51 does not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness,
29:53 go after one which is lost until he finds it?
29:56 And when he has found it,
29:58 he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
30:00 And when he comes home,
30:01 he calls together his friends and neighbors,
30:04 together, and saying to them,
30:06 'Rejoice with me,
30:07 for I have found my sheep which was lost!'
30:09 And I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven
30:15 over one sinner who repents
30:17 than over ninety-nine just persons
30:20 who need no repentance. "
30:21 Pause.
30:23 This would be very much understood
30:25 in an agrarian society that Jesus was living in.
30:28 Everyone understood about sheep and shepherds...
30:32 and it was a very serious thing to be a shepherd
30:35 because there was a fair amount of responsibility
30:38 and accountability for example,
30:40 if one of those sheep were lost,
30:42 then the shepherd was held responsible.
30:45 That's why he had to go out and find that sheep
30:50 and if the sheep was devoured by some wild animal,
30:55 he had to gather up the carcass and take it back
30:59 because otherwise, he might be accused of stealing the sheep
31:03 because they're extremely valuable in that society.
31:07 Pause.
31:09 So, look for it until it's found... you find it.
31:12 What is Jesus trying to illustrate here?
31:14 He's trying to illustrate to us
31:16 the value that He puts on a soul.
31:19 Pause...
31:20 That's what He's telling us in this story
31:23 because the Lord Jesus is the good shepherd
31:25 and here we have the... the picture of the 90 and 9
31:29 when one goes astray and He counts them through
31:32 and you know when you're trying to count sheep,
31:35 it's not an easy thing.
31:36 Pause...
31:38 And He starts again... and He got 99...
31:42 they start again...
31:45 one of them moves again so you've got to start again
31:47 but eventually He's convinced that there's 99
31:50 and then, He realizes the one that's missing
31:52 is the one that's got that black mark on its... on its head,
31:55 and it's got a mark on its right paw... leg...
31:59 pause...
32:01 because He's got a photographic memory of those sheep,
32:05 He knows them all...
32:06 in fact, He even has a name for each of them
32:10 pause...
32:12 and He goes out and finds that sheep
32:15 and when He does find the sheep,
32:18 He rejoices.
32:19 You know, sheep are a most defenseless animal
32:24 and those of us who've got a tender heart
32:28 don't like to understand a picture of a lion or a bear
32:32 or a wolf attacking a sheep
32:36 because the sheep would have no defense at all,
32:39 it's finished...
32:40 pause...
32:43 and they're a senseless animal.
32:45 You know, a dog and a cat
32:46 can find its way home, isn't that right?
32:49 You know, people have tried to lose their cats
32:52 and found it a week or two later,
32:55 that things turns up again, amazing!
32:58 Dogs... the same...
32:59 but a sheep... hopeless.
33:02 I was down in...
33:05 in New South Wales some years ago
33:07 and I was running some meetings
33:10 and I needed to visit this sheep farmer
33:12 and it was in the dead of night,
33:15 there was no moon out, it was cloudy
33:17 and stars were not there... it was just black...
33:20 and I drove into this farm, opened the gate
33:23 and then, drove in, closed the gate behind me
33:25 and as I was driving up toward the house,
33:27 I could see the light in the distance,
33:30 pause...
33:31 there was a flock of sheep,
33:33 so I had to stop the car
33:35 while these sheep ran in front of me.
33:39 I sat there for over five minutes
33:42 I thought, "Dear, oh dear, there's plenty of these sheep,
33:45 where are they all coming from?"
33:46 and I sat there patiently
33:49 then I decided that I would just get out
33:53 to see where they were coming from,
33:55 you know what I found?
33:56 They were running around the... around the car like this...
33:59 so there weren't a lot of them really at all,
34:02 around and around and around...
34:04 and I thought, "That's just like sheep,
34:07 they just follow one another"
34:08 and I've never forgotten that... that experience.
34:13 They're also helpless,
34:14 I mean, they can't provide for themselves,
34:17 a camel can smell water a long distance away,
34:20 but a sheep... absolutely hopeless,
34:23 cannot do anything for itself
34:26 and Jesus is teaching in this parable,
34:29 the importance of a soul
34:31 even if the person is defenseless
34:33 and has no idea...
34:35 pause...
34:38 Jesus is illustrating how He regards each of us
34:42 and it teaches me that I must have compassion for the lost...
34:46 for those who do not understand what the Bible teaches.
34:50 Pause...
34:52 Jesus understands the wounds
34:54 that sin brings to a person's heart.
34:57 You've probably seen like I have,
35:00 parents interviewed on television
35:03 when their child is lost
35:04 pause...
35:06 and the passion and the emotion
35:11 and the concern those parents have for a lost child.
35:14 Pause...
35:16 Remember this,
35:18 that passion that we have for our children,
35:21 who put that passion there?
35:24 God did because it's a reflection...
35:28 particularly mother's love.
35:29 God put mother's love in her heart
35:34 because mother's love is the closest illustration
35:38 that God has given to us of God's love for us
35:42 pause...
35:45 and a mother's love is so strong,
35:47 it's stronger than iron.
35:48 Pause...
35:51 Jesus is illustrating that that's His love for us.
35:54 Then He told a second parable, after the lost sheep,
35:57 He then told another parable.
35:59 This time, it concerned a coin.
36:01 Have a look at verse 8, it says,
36:04 "Or what woman, having ten silver coins,
36:07 if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp,
36:12 sweep the house, and search carefully
36:14 until she finds it?
36:15 And when she has found it,
36:18 she calls her friends and neighbors together saying,
36:20 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my piece
36:24 which I lost!'
36:25 Likewise, I say to you,
36:27 there is joy in the presence of the angels of God
36:30 over one sinner who repents. "
36:33 This time, Jesus illustrates with a lost coin.
36:37 Very precious to her, I mean, back in those days,
36:40 a denarius or a... like a penny...
36:43 we would say a cent... that was a day's wage
36:47 so, you can imagine, a silver coin...
36:50 that would be worth a lot.
36:51 She had ten of them
36:53 because back in those days there were no banks
36:55 and you had to look after your own money
36:58 which was very dangerous
37:00 because you could very easily lose it
37:03 and so, she was distraught over the fact
37:07 that she had lost this coin,
37:08 so, you know what it's like, when you lose something,
37:12 you got to try to remember, where was I last?
37:14 And you go back and have a look there
37:16 and couldn't find it, looked under the cupboard
37:19 may have rolled under the cupboard and she got down...
37:22 tried to have a look, couldn't find it anywhere.
37:26 So she contacts her friends where she last visited
37:29 yeah... she traces her steps...
37:31 "Did I leave it at my friends?"
37:33 And they... and she asks them to help her find it
37:37 and eventually she finds the coin
37:40 and she is so happy that she's found this coin
37:43 as the Bible says she... "Rejoice with me,
37:46 for I have found the piece that I had lost!"
37:49 What is Jesus trying to illustrate here?
37:51 The joy that's in heaven over one person who comes to Jesus.
37:57 Pause...
37:59 And then, He told another story.
38:01 The story that we're probably much more familiar with
38:04 and that is starting in verse 11,
38:06 the parable of the lost boy.
38:08 Actually there were two lost boys in this story,
38:11 we often refer to it as the story of the lost boy
38:15 but there were two boys involved with this story
38:18 and I'm not going to read the whole story
38:19 because you know it very well,
38:21 but if you go down to verse 22,
38:23 it says here,
38:25 "But the father said to his servants,
38:28 'Bring out the best robe and put it on him,
38:31 and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet.
38:34 And bring the fatted calf here and kill it,
38:37 and let us eat and be merry;
38:41 for this my son was dead and is alive again;
38:45 he was lost and is found. '
38:49 And they began to get merry. "
38:50 Pause...
38:53 Now, that merriness had a reaction
38:55 because if you go down to verse 32, it says,
39:00 the father... because the oldest son now objects
39:04 to all this merriment over this boy that was lost,
39:09 and finally the father says,
39:11 "It was right that we should make merry and be glad,
39:13 for your brother was dead and is alive again,
39:16 and was lost and now is found. "
39:20 What is this chapter about?
39:22 Why has Jesus put these three parables together?
39:25 Because they're basically saying the same thing.
39:27 Pause...
39:29 What's the key word that you find in every parable?
39:32 Pause...
39:34 Yes, there's... there's a positive adjective though
39:39 what's the positive word that's used...
39:43 Audience: Rejoice...
39:44 Rejoice... it's picturing God Who is rejoicing
39:51 because who's the father in the prodigal son's story?
39:55 That's God.
39:57 God is pictured as rejoicing.
39:59 Who's leading the party?
40:02 God.
40:03 And also, who is leading the rejoicing?
40:07 It's God... and the picture that the Bible is giving to us
40:12 is how happy and how rejoicing
40:14 the great party that's being held in heaven
40:16 over even a single soul that's lost... that's come back.
40:20 Pause...
40:23 And verse seven gives us a clue
40:25 of chapter 15 verse 7, it says,
40:28 "I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven
40:32 over one sinner who repents
40:34 than over ninety-nine just persons
40:37 who need no repentance. "
40:39 Do we get the message?
40:41 God is very excited when people are won to Him.
40:46 When they've come from sin into salvation...
40:50 God rejoices... Heaven rejoices...
40:53 I wonder whether we have that same concern.
40:56 Pause...
40:58 As long as we're happy
41:00 and, you know, we come to church
41:02 and have a nice time,
41:04 is that our... our aim...
41:07 is that really what church is all about?
41:09 Or is church...
41:11 should be church about training us
41:13 so that we can become more effective
41:16 in helping our neighbors and our friends and family
41:20 because Jesus said, "The harvest truly is plenteous"
41:24 now, either He's telling a fib when He says that
41:28 or it's true.
41:30 I happened to believe it's true...
41:32 that there's plenty of people everywhere
41:36 that are wistfully looking to heaven.
41:40 Pause.
41:42 No, they're not going to come to us usually...
41:45 we've got to go to them.
41:46 The sheep was lost, it didn't even know it was lost,
41:49 the coin didn't know it was lost
41:51 and in the majority of cases, we have to find those people.
41:58 Verse 10, "Likewise, I say to you,
42:02 there is joy in the presence of the angels of God
42:05 over one sinner who repents. "
42:06 Some people say, "Well the angels rejoice. "
42:09 Well, actually, it doesn't say that does it?
42:12 although I do believe the angels do rejoice
42:15 but it's not saying that in that text, is it?
42:18 Pause...
42:20 Where is the rejoicing taking place?
42:22 In the presence of the angels
42:26 which would suggest... who's rejoicing?
42:28 The Godhead...
42:33 and of course, I believe the angels would be...
42:35 would be involved in that too because they are part of heaven.
42:39 Why did Jesus come to seek and to save the lost?
42:44 Because that brings Him joy, that brings Him great happiness.
42:48 All heaven rings when a soul comes to Jesus.
42:54 Pause.
42:55 And if that is true,
42:57 how important it is for you and for me
43:00 to be involved in helping heaven to rejoice
43:03 because God has given to us that responsibility.
43:06 He didn't have to give it to us,
43:09 He could have done a lot better if He had given it to the angels
43:12 but He didn't choose to do that
43:15 because you and I need to be involved
43:17 and if we're going to grow in our own experience,
43:20 you and I need to be involved in helping others to know Jesus.
43:23 Pause...
43:25 And Jesus called each of the disciples to be evangelists
43:29 He said, "I want to make you fishers of men. "
43:33 And you know, when you think about those disciples,
43:37 they were a pretty thick lot weren't they?
43:40 Pause...
43:41 I mean, He spent three years training them...
43:43 three years...
43:46 and even at the end of the three years,
43:48 they weren't very wise, were they?
43:53 And they had spent three years with the greatest teacher
43:57 that's ever lived on this earth.
43:58 That ought to give us some encouragement...
44:01 those of us who are involved in the church
44:05 and we find that there are some sleepy ones...
44:06 some disinterested others...
44:09 give us encouragement
44:12 but even Jesus had those problems,
44:15 they were a tough lot.
44:16 In fact, if you look at Matthew chapter 13,
44:20 the parables of Matthew chapter 13,
44:22 and we haven't got time to look at them all
44:26 but that's the wheat and the tares
44:27 and the mustard seed and so forth,
44:29 all of those parables,
44:31 chapter 13 is full of them... Matthew...
44:34 all of those parables are dealing
44:38 with the evangelistic situation of what needs to take place
44:43 when we go out into the earth
44:44 and to... and to win...
44:45 each one of those parables has to do
44:48 with the type of reception that we're going to meet,
44:52 you look at them all and read them through.
44:55 The wheat and the tares...
44:57 the sower...
44:58 how apt is that story of the sower.
45:02 You know, when I was over in Israel a few years ago,
45:06 I... I just happened to be driving up north
45:09 to the Sea of Galilee from Jerusalem
45:12 and the morning sun was just coming up,
45:15 it was a beautiful morning and I couldn't believe my eyes,
45:19 for there in the field was a sower... sowing the seed
45:23 with a horse
45:26 and the horse was digging up the ground
45:29 and then, I presumed it was his wife
45:33 coming behind,
45:35 throwing the seed,
45:37 and I thought, "How wonderful is that!"
45:39 Because I could just picture
45:41 that Jesus saw something like that
45:43 to... to inspire Him to tell that story.
45:46 Pause...
45:48 And then, Matthew 10,
45:49 if you look at the parables in Matthew 10,
45:52 you'll find that they're all to do with the...
45:54 with the opposition...
45:58 with the type of reception
46:00 that the disciples were going to get
46:01 when they went forth
46:03 because it always wasn't going to be easy
46:04 and you read through the parables of Matthew 10
46:07 with that in mind and they make wonderful sense.
46:10 So that was the instruction
46:12 that Jesus was giving to the disciples
46:14 because remember this,
46:15 the parables weren't given to the Pharisees
46:19 and the Sadducees, were they?
46:21 Why did Jesus tell parables?
46:24 The Bible says, "To hide it from those
46:27 who didn't have a heart to want to listen
46:31 and it was instruction to the disciples,
46:33 it says that in the Bible
46:35 so the... the parables are for instruction
46:39 for God's people in the church,
46:41 and what amazing hidden truth there is
46:47 in each of those... those parables
46:50 Jesus said, "I want you to become fishers of men. "
46:52 Then, finally He gave the instruction
46:55 to go out into all the world in Matthew chapter 28 and verses 18
47:00 "Go into all the world... preach...
47:05 teaching them to observe
47:07 everything that I have instructed you... "
47:10 this was the last instruction that was given to the disciples
47:14 before Jesus went back to heaven.
47:15 Pause...
47:19 And then, in Acts chapter 1 and verse 8,
47:21 would you just come over to Acts 1 and verse 8,
47:24 once again, these texts are known to us all
47:26 but it's good to remind ourselves of these things,
47:30 Acts chapter 1 and verse 8
47:33 where Jesus' instruction was given as to where to go.
47:40 Acts 1 verse 8, Jesus said this.
47:42 "But you shall receive power
47:46 when the Holy Spirit has come upon you;
47:48 and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem,
47:53 and in all Judea and Samaria,
47:59 and to the uttermost part of the earth. "
48:04 Pause...
48:06 You know, someone has pictured the disciples
48:09 gathered around Jesus when He talked this way to them
48:13 and the look of amazement
48:18 on the disciples' faces when He said this.
48:21 "Lord, You're not asking us to go back to Jerusalem
48:26 where they crucified You, are You?"
48:31 Is that what You're saying?
48:33 And Jesus says calmly to them,
48:37 "I want you to go back to Jerusalem
48:39 and tell that murderous lot
48:43 that there's hope for them all
48:47 and Peter, I want you particularly
48:50 to find the man that spat in My face
48:54 and Peter, I want you to tell him
48:57 that I'm preparing a home for him in glory
49:00 and Thomas,
49:03 I want you to find the man who made that crown of thorns
49:10 and shoved it into My brow... and I want you to find him
49:17 and I want you to tell him
49:20 that I am preparing a crown in heaven for him
49:23 but tell him Thomas,
49:26 there'll be no thorns in My crown for him
49:31 and James, I want you to find the man
49:35 that pierced My side...
49:37 that shoved that spear into My side
49:41 and I want you to tell him, James,
49:45 there's a much closer way to My heart than that. "
49:48 You know the... the forgiveness
49:51 of the Lord Jesus Christ is amazing.
49:55 Pause...
49:57 Absolutely incredible.
49:59 I was talking to a man who was attending my meetings recently
50:05 and he said, "I just don't believe the story of Jesus,
50:08 it's a myth... it's made up. "
50:10 Well, I said to him, "I got a problem with that,
50:14 the problem I have is this,
50:17 'if Jesus didn't exist... who made the story up?'
50:24 Pause...
50:26 Because the story of Jesus and His forgiveness
50:32 is so far beyond
50:36 which any human being would ever be able to do...
50:41 it would be impossible for a human being
50:44 to think up that story,
50:46 impossible...
50:47 so if you deny that Jesus exists,
50:51 please tell me, who made the story up
50:55 because all the other religious leaders...
50:58 they took their holy book in one hand
51:00 and the sword in the other
51:02 and then if you didn't accept the book...
51:03 then the sword finished you off.
51:05 That's how their message was taken around the world... "
51:09 pause...
51:11 and there are some religions that still use that tactic today
51:14 pause...
51:16 but Jesus said, "Love your enemies...
51:20 pause...
51:23 bless them that curse you...
51:25 pause...
51:28 and be kind to those who say terrible things about you
51:34 and when they do that, leap for joy. "
51:37 I notice that most of us leap, all right,
51:40 when people say things about us
51:43 but we don't leap for joy, is that right?
51:47 But Jesus said, "Forgive your enemies. "
51:51 That's the Savior I need.
51:55 You know, I was over in Washington, D.C.
51:58 a few years ago and I went to the
52:02 Holocaust Museum in Washington,
52:05 it's quite a place...
52:09 and I remember sitting there having the pictures and so forth
52:12 and then I sat down and watched a film of this lady
52:16 who was telling her experiences
52:20 in the 2nd World War... the holocaust...
52:23 and I just sat there and I...
52:25 it was just terrible to listen to...
52:27 it was excruciating...
52:28 that poor lady... and what she'd been through
52:31 pause...
52:33 but what impressed me most was what she said at the last,
52:36 she said, "I will always remember
52:41 but will never forgive. "
52:45 Pause...
52:49 You see, that's...
52:52 that's the indication of someone without Jesus
52:55 because it's only Jesus that can give us grace to forgive.
53:05 Audience: Amen.
53:07 Pause...
53:10 It is so different...
53:12 it is so far away from our natural tendencies
53:16 because when someone kicks you, what do you want to do?
53:20 Only a bit harder, isn't that right?
53:23 Of course, we all understand because that's our nature.
53:28 All of us are like that
53:30 but Jesus taught us to be different to that
53:35 pause...
53:38 and it's only the righteousness of Jesus
53:42 in a man and a woman's life
53:44 that can enable him to do that.
53:46 You know, sometimes I pray the Lord's Prayer and you do too
53:51 and there's a part of the Lord's Prayer
53:54 that causes me to tremble every time I read it
53:58 and I pray it.
53:59 You know what part it is?
54:00 Pause...
54:02 "Lord,
54:04 forgive me for my sins... "
54:07 what does the rest of the verse say?
54:10 "as I forgive those who sin against me. "
54:15 I tell you, do you feel like forgiving some people?
54:21 Pretty hard isn't it?
54:23 Pause...
54:25 Pretty hard...
54:27 and that's why we need the grace of Jesus in our hearts
54:31 to forgive... and when we forgive,
54:36 God enables us to have a passion...
54:41 passion for the lost...
54:45 pause...
54:48 and today, the church needs men and women,
54:53 young people... who will stand and stand for truth,
54:58 stand for everything that is right...
55:03 pause...
55:04 and turn their back on perhaps well-paying jobs
55:09 so that they can devote their life
55:11 like those who have lived before us
55:13 for the cause of Christ.
55:15 Pause...
55:18 Today we live with an opportunity
55:23 of being faithful to God and I pray...
55:25 and my prayer today is that we will be faithful,
55:28 that we will ask God to fill us with His righteousness,
55:32 as we discussed before,
55:35 the work of Christ not only for us but in us
55:39 to change my life, to make me like Jesus
55:42 so that I can forgive like He taught me to forgive.
55:47 Let's just bow our heads in prayer.
55:50 "Our Father in heaven,
55:52 I just want to thank you again today
55:54 for the marvelous story of Jesus.
55:57 I want to thank you for a Savior like we have...
56:02 the Savior that has forgiven us
56:05 and has taught us by His power that we can forgive those
56:09 who sin against us,
56:11 Lord, we confess that this is probably the hardest thing
56:15 that ever a person has to confront
56:18 but I pray Lord, that you will give us
56:20 such an outpouring of Your Spirit
56:22 that we will be faithful
56:24 and that we will do what you want us to do
56:27 to spend time with Jesus so that He can change our life,
56:30 bless us to this end please
56:31 and keep us faithful until the day when Jesus comes
56:35 is my prayer today, for Christ's sake, amen. "


Revised 2019-04-16