Life Discovery Series

Are We Almost There? - The Christian In A Broken World

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Jim Reinking


Series Code: LDS

Program Code: LDS000027

00:34 Christian in a Broken World
00:36 and I want to begin with the text
00:37 and it's found in Galatians 2:20
00:40 and happens be another one of those favorite texts,
00:43 at least for me as one of those favorite texts.
00:45 And just some texts have a ring to them
00:47 and this certainly has it.
00:49 Where it says, "I am crucified with Christ
00:52 and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me,
00:57 and the life which I now live in the flesh
00:59 I live by faith in the Son of God,
01:03 who loved me
01:04 and delivered Himself up for me."
01:07 Wouldn't agree that
01:08 its just one little texts that has a ring?
01:11 And yet begins with this idea "I am crucified with Christ."
01:14 What does that mean, I am crucified with Christ?
01:18 Well, we remember when we're baptized
01:19 we enter as Romans 6 says "we enter in the death,
01:22 the burial and the resurrection of Jesus."
01:26 We enter by faith into the death of Jesus.
01:28 There is the renunciation of self,
01:32 our turning away from self because self has been
01:35 deeply affected by this knowledge of evil
01:38 that come straight out of the Garden of Eden.
01:41 And so there is this renunciation of self
01:44 but there is in the renunciation of self and embracement
01:49 of the life of Jesus so that it is no longer
01:53 I who live but what, Christ lives in me.
01:59 That's what it means fundamentally to be a Christian,
02:02 to be a Seventh-day Adventist Christian, very specifically.
02:05 And I want to specifically this morning
02:07 focus in on that part of the text that says the life
02:12 which I now live, which clearly is a contrast
02:19 to the life which I once lived apart from Christ,
02:24 a life that was dominated by self
02:27 that was centered in self.
02:28 Would you not agree?
02:30 And I just I pray I believe that this is the desire
02:34 the prayer of each one of us this morning,
02:36 that desire that hunger to know Jesus more that Jesus
02:40 to be yielded more fully and completely to Jesus
02:42 so that Jesus can live out His life through us, by faith.
02:46 And it's all a faith.
02:49 Now I'm gonna be very practical
02:51 in what I am gonna be sharing with you this morning
02:53 and it is apart with the flow of what we've been studying
02:56 in the area of righteousness by faith.
02:58 Every subject that we've looked at
03:00 in the context of the revival
03:02 has had that beautiful truth of righteousness
03:05 by faith as a foundation to it.
03:09 Take your Bibles and turn with me to 1 John Chapter 2
03:11 the New Testament page 185,
03:15 185, 1 John 2:15-17.
03:23 Again our experience our profession
03:25 must be much more than just allusive teaching,
03:28 allusive doctrines that we believe.
03:30 The teachings and the doctrines are relevant
03:33 only in the context of our relationship.
03:37 And our purpose, our purpose is
03:40 not to intellectualize us, primarily.
03:45 Certainly, we are not to deny
03:48 how important an intellectual understanding is
03:51 because that's why the Word of God has been given to us.
03:54 So it's not a denial of the intellectual aspect
03:57 that is a part of faith but it must not be just simply
04:02 an intellectual experience.
04:04 It must be a relationship
04:08 and the intellectual aspect of it
04:11 is to give us the content to our relationship
04:14 and understanding of who Jesus is,
04:16 what He stands for?
04:18 The principles, the counsels
04:20 and the teachings that we have from His word
04:24 and we believe it's the Spirit of Jesus
04:26 that has spoken to us through His word, right.
04:28 But here we are 1 John 2:15-17 were John says
04:33 "Do not love the world or the things in the world.
04:36 If anyone loves the world,
04:38 the love of the Father is not in him.
04:43 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh
04:45 and the lust of the eyes, and the boastful pride of life
04:50 is not from the Father but is from the world.
04:53 The world is passing away and also its lust,
04:55 but the one does the will of God lives forever."
04:58 And we've already taken note in the context of our meetings
05:02 and it's a, its essential to our understanding of the gospel
05:06 and the who Jesus is and when He came to accomplish for us
05:09 to understand this is not the world that God
05:12 intended for us to live our lives out on.
05:17 A world full of all of the problems and difficulties
05:20 I call it the mess that sin has made of life.
05:25 It has just corrupted God's original intention for us.
05:29 Life was never meant be what we are experiencing
05:33 at here in this old world.
05:35 And knowing that and in understanding
05:37 that we can appreciate something what John is talking about here.
05:40 How can we love something that is a marked departure
05:44 from Gods will for us, right?
05:46 And it is, it's a marked departure
05:50 from Gods original plan for us.
05:52 Just God just has a better way.
05:55 He has a better way, doesn't He?
05:57 He has a better way, he has a better intent
05:59 for your life and my life.
06:02 And He has a plan for us.
06:05 By denials we look at this text.
06:07 I know that it may be possibly in this ebb and flow
06:11 that's been taking place in the church
06:12 over this whole area of righteousness by faith,
06:15 that pendulum swing, the perception that--
06:18 you know and then the reality of it
06:21 as many of us have experienced in the past
06:23 how legalistic some people were when it came to this matter
06:26 of the practice of Christian life,
06:29 the Christian life, the practice of it.
06:31 And because some were so legalistic
06:33 the pendulum has in some way swung the other direction
06:37 and the result has come down to this.
06:39 For too many there is develop, it has developed a disconnection
06:46 between what we profess
06:50 and what we're living.
06:52 Because this whole area of living
06:56 that also deals with lifestyle issues has in the past
07:00 for some of us smacked up legalism
07:03 and so we do not talk about the life that we live,
07:07 now live in the words of Galatians 2:20
07:10 because of these situation
07:12 that many of us have had from the past.
07:15 And there is undoubtedly and you know
07:17 I experience some of this.
07:18 I know what some maybe some of you have gone through
07:22 very personally and they respired legalism.
07:26 So we've got to clear the air,
07:29 we got to get the legalism out of it
07:31 and when we get,
07:32 the only way to get the legalism out of it my friend
07:35 is to get Jesus centered in it.
07:39 And when Jesus is centered in it,
07:40 it is foundational in it then the legalism will be gone.
07:48 So I am interested in my own life
07:51 and let me bear my testimony
07:53 and I believe you are too, I want my life to be a--
07:58 I want my life to be a practical life as a Christian.
08:01 I want my faith to be integrated into my life.
08:05 I want my faith in Jesus to be integrated
08:08 in what I do and in what I say.
08:13 I pray for that. I pray for that daily.
08:16 And I can't stand up here and say that I've arrived.
08:20 I still fall short but the righteousness of Jesus
08:24 covers me at every point, amen.
08:27 And I am accepted as fully and completely
08:29 as if I've never failed.
08:32 So we need to remember that too as we,
08:35 we get into our subject a little bit
08:36 more practically this morning.
08:39 One need not to be a Christian to understand that in the world
08:43 we have good and we have evil.
08:47 One doesn't have to be a Christian to know that.
08:50 And to know that there it just has to be a better way
08:54 one does not need to be a Christian.
08:57 And let me take you to 1 Peter 2
09:00 the New Testament page 180, 180, 1 Peter 2:9.
09:06 So we've got good, we've got evil in the world.
09:09 We have it around us, we have it within us
09:11 because again we've been tainted by evil, haven't we.
09:14 We've tainted by sin.
09:15 We each have had our own individual experience in sin.
09:20 Again what temptations, what sins what may be sin to you
09:24 may not be a temptation to me and vise versa
09:27 but we all have our individual experience in it.
09:30 In 1 Peter 2:9
09:33 it declares "But you are a chosen race,
09:38 a royal priesthood, a holy nation,
09:40 a people for God's own possession."
09:45 I looked out among you today we profess,
09:49 we profess to be the people of God
09:52 and we've been set aside to be possessed by God,
09:56 to be possessed by the Spirit of God,
09:59 the Spirit of Jesus right.
10:02 Boy, what a holy calling is ours has Jesus said it
10:05 "I've chosen you, you're mine."
10:09 And we're his again by our profession
10:11 our response to the claims of Jesus.
10:15 So we are holy nation and people for God's own possession
10:18 so that-- there is a purpose of all of this.
10:21 "So that you may proclaim the excellencies of him
10:25 who is called you out of darkness
10:27 into his marvelous light," that's powerful.
10:33 And so my friend, it is not simply the preaching
10:36 in the proclamation of the word that is needed
10:40 but it is a living demonstration of the law
10:46 then the joy and the power of the gospel
10:49 in God's people, in our lives.
10:54 A living testimony individually and collectively
10:59 of what the Gospel is like in the hearts of people
11:02 just like you and me
11:04 who were struggling along, living demonstration.
11:07 And so this morning as we look at
11:09 again 1 John 2:15-17
11:13 as we talk about some of the practices about this
11:15 they are three things that John speaks of here
11:19 that we're gonna-- its the basis of
11:21 what I'm gonna be preaching on its the outline effect.
11:24 He talks about first of all the "Lust of the Flesh.
11:27 We're gonna broaden this up beyond what we usually think of.
11:30 Number two, the "Lust of the Eyes"
11:32 which is a fascinating term, isn't it the lust of the eyes.
11:36 And then finally the pride of life.
11:40 The Pride of Life.
11:45 My friend, it is through our senses,
11:50 it is through our senses that we are deeply affected.
11:55 Just put a whole-- sorry
11:57 the whole thing of the spiritual life.
11:59 Everything is depended upon our senses.
12:01 Just think of what life would be without the senses.
12:04 You know the five at least that
12:05 I was taught when I was growing up.
12:07 I mean you know being able to see, being able to hear
12:11 in a few moments to enjoy the senses of smell
12:14 and taste and touch.
12:19 You tell me what would a hug be without touch,
12:23 it's a marvelous thing that God did when He create us
12:25 the way that He did with these senses,
12:28 we taken for granted.
12:30 I mean the marvel of just sight being able see,
12:34 to take light and for the brain to interpret this,
12:37 the, the colors as I look at the windows,
12:39 the blues and the oranges and the reds
12:42 and whatever else those colors are, you know,
12:44 to look out in you and see the forms.
12:48 Oh, you know how wonderful sight is.
12:50 And think of the marvelous thing that God gave us
12:53 when He gave us ears to be able to take,
12:56 pick up those beautiful vibrations
12:59 and the music that we were hearing just few moments ago.
13:02 I'll tell you there won't be any pretty singers,
13:04 there wouldn't be any instruments
13:05 if it wasn't for this marvelous mechanism
13:07 that God gave us right here.
13:10 And it is through the senses that we are affected deeply,
13:17 we're affected deeply for good
13:19 and it's also through those same senses that
13:21 we can be deeply affected for evil.
13:25 Again as we're looking at 1 Peter 2:9
13:27 in the context of the fact that "we're chosen race,
13:30 we're a holy nation and people for God's own possession,"
13:33 set aside to what He say here
13:36 "to proclaim the Excellencies of Him
13:38 who's called us out of darkness into his marvelous light."
13:43 You see we through Jesus Christ are to be a light
13:47 in the darkness of this old world.
13:50 The Corvallis Church has been set aside
13:54 by God Himself to be the light.
13:59 It is nonexclusively us the light that is to shine
14:03 through us is the light of the life of Jesus.
14:09 That is the light that is to be shining
14:11 and each one of us are to be reflectors of thee light.
14:17 It is behind what Jesus said when He said to His followers
14:20 "you are the light of the world."
14:23 Think of what it means in a darker world to be lights,
14:28 lights for God.
14:29 I am gonna share little bit Greek with you this morning.
14:32 Let me take you to this word ecclesia
14:34 that we translate church,
14:36 translate church in the New Testament,
14:38 ecclesia is really based upon two words
14:43 the first word is ak is the word out,
14:46 that's how you literally translate it.
14:49 And the other part ecclesia comes from the Greek word
14:51 kaleo that translates, I call.
14:55 Now think of the meaning of the word church.
14:58 It means the ones whom Jesus has called literally, I called out.
15:03 Called out of what?
15:05 Out of darkness, out of the darkness of sin,
15:09 is what we've been called out of right.
15:11 And so to put it in other way,
15:13 when we talk about being a part of the church
15:15 it is collectively the called out ones.
15:18 We are the called out ones.
15:22 We have heard the call of Jesus
15:24 and we've responded to the call of Jesus, haven't we.
15:29 But my friend, this gives
15:31 a holy purpose to all of us, a holy purpose.
15:36 Take a look at Romans 8 the New Testament page 123,
15:39 123, Romans 8 and verses 5-7.
15:46 Okay,
15:51 going to be talking about the Lust of the Flesh
15:53 here in just a moment.
15:56 I know you can hardly wait, can you?
15:58 What is he gonna be talking about
16:00 when he gets to the lust of the flesh.
16:01 But I'm still laying down a foundation for God's word.
16:05 Here it is Romans 8 and beginning with verse 5,
16:07 where it says "For those who are according to the flesh
16:10 set their minds on the things of the flesh,
16:14 but those who are according to the Spirit,
16:17 the things of the Spirit.
16:19 For the mind set on the flesh is death,
16:22 but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace,
16:26 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God
16:29 for it does not subject itself to the law of God,
16:32 for it is not even able to do so."
16:37 Those whose minds are set on the things of the flesh
16:41 and as I've talked about how important senses are,
16:44 my friend, the senses have a direct connection
16:48 on the brain on the mind.
16:51 It has a direct bearing on our mindset
16:56 and there is a mindset,
16:59 a mindset for those who have in darkness,
17:02 a mindset for those who are out in the world
17:06 and in contrast for those of us who have called to proclaim
17:10 His marvelous light there is a mindset
17:13 that sets us apart, right.
17:18 It sets us apart.
17:22 A mind that is set on the things of the flesh,
17:26 things of the flesh, a mindset that is set
17:29 on the things of the spirit represents
17:31 two orientations to life.
17:35 And the two orientations of life is on one hand
17:38 the spiritual that is the mindset,
17:40 the mind that is set on the things of the spirit.
17:42 We would call this the spiritual mindset
17:45 in contrast to those who have their
17:47 mindset on the things the flesh which is the sensual.
17:51 It's the spiritual versus the sensual
17:54 that Paul is talking about here.
17:57 And my friend, we have been called
17:59 to be a spiritual people, right, Amen.
18:03 And we're spiritual because of the relationship.
18:06 We're spiritual because it is Jesus that inhabits us,
18:09 it is Jesus that is living out His life in us.
18:13 But my friend, it's a process it is a process of becoming,
18:19 becoming like the one that we truly love.
18:24 Another fascinating text Hebrews5:14.
18:27 Hebrews 5:14 says, "But solid food is for the mature,
18:31 who because of practice have their senses."
18:34 Here it is senses again. "Have their senses trained"
18:38 trained, disciplined or that "to discern good and evil."
18:46 We have been tainted by this knowledge of evil
18:48 this is not something that we come naturally by,
18:52 the natural heart is in contrast.
18:56 The natural heart is at enmity with the spiritual
19:00 and that is where the battle is fought out
19:03 in each one our lives, isn't it.
19:05 Those natural tendencies because of sin on the other hand
19:11 you know the call of Jesus to a better life
19:15 and it is a better life isn't it, it's a better life.
19:18 It's a spiritual life.
19:21 It's a spiritual life that we're talking about.
19:25 And then let me add into the whole of it, 2 Timothy 3:1.
19:30 Now I am and it's not clear yet
19:32 I am gonna get down into some specifics.
19:35 I'm gonna get down into
19:36 the principles and the applications
19:39 and what it means to live as a Christian
19:41 in the kind of world that we live in,
19:43 living in the western civilization
19:44 that we're living and particularly living
19:46 in the good old American culture that we're living in.
19:50 And how when we talking about letting our light shine
19:52 what does that practically mean? In 2 Timothy 3:1.
19:58 Paul says, "But realize this,
20:00 that in the last days difficult times will come."
20:05 Who knows how this whole thing is going to play out?
20:08 I'm thinking of the whole financial thing.
20:10 "For men will be lovers of self,
20:12 and lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers."
20:15 There a long list describing the end times
20:19 and the list ends with these words
20:20 "lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God."
20:24 "Lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God."
20:28 And my friend, it is the pleasure principle,
20:30 it is the hedonistic society.
20:33 I didn't say hedonistic,
20:34 hedonistic society that we live in.
20:37 It is that pleasure principle.
20:39 It is living for the pleasures and satisfying
20:42 all of the hearts of desires but again
20:45 recognizing that the heart has been tainted by evil
20:48 which has and effect on those pleasures, doesn't it.
20:52 Now let me say from the outset,
20:55 I'm not into this idea that as Christians.
20:59 We must some how be kind of doughier,
21:02 we must be kind of sober I mean
21:04 yes there's a sober side of faith, isn't it.
21:07 There is some sobering things
21:09 about our commitment to Jesus Christ.
21:11 But my friend, we are to be people of joy.
21:15 We're be to be a people that are happy.
21:18 Yes there gonna be trails.
21:20 Yes, there gonna be difficulties.
21:21 Yes, there're gonna be tears
21:24 but I am not into the kind of Christianity
21:26 and I don't think you are either.
21:28 You better not crack a smile because if you do
21:31 you've sin until you get on your knees
21:33 until you make it right with God.
21:36 I mean when Jesus said it
21:37 "I am come that they might have life,
21:39 and have it more abundantly." I believed what He said.
21:45 We're to enjoy life.
21:49 And my friend, who better to enjoy life
21:51 than we who are in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ?
21:59 It is not a sin, young people it is not a sin to have fun
22:04 within framework
22:06 of our commitment to Jesus Christ, right.
22:09 And our relationship does create a framework for a life.
22:15 So have fun, enjoy life, be happy
22:20 but again remember we have been called
22:23 to be a light in the world, we are light.
22:27 I didn't always understand these things as a young person,
22:30 it was my junior year in academy, Auburn Academy
22:34 and one Saturday night a really close friend of mine Jimmy Downs
22:37 and I decided that we will go down
22:39 and we came down the hill.
22:40 At the bottom of the hill this is where
22:42 were going was a skating rink,
22:43 and next to it was a bowling alley.
22:46 And as we came down the hill
22:47 we saw that the-- they shared a parking lot.
22:50 We saw that it was packed
22:53 and we thought to ourselves man,
22:54 everybody in town looks like they're out.
22:57 You know and we were kind of bemoaning the fact.
22:59 You know it's-- you know when you're out skating
23:02 and the skating they still have them around don't they.
23:06 Do you still have them here in Corvallis it's A skating rink?
23:09 Corvallis has none. Oh my, oh my.
23:13 So you've not a clue what I'm talking about
23:16 some of you who are younger.
23:17 But anyway, so you know when you--
23:20 and if there is a crowd at the skating rink
23:23 particularly if you're like a little bit of speed
23:25 within certain you know restrictions,
23:28 you know it's kind of hard
23:29 when you have to be weaving in out of people.
23:32 Actually we didn't know until we got up to the door
23:35 having parked way out
23:36 that there was a teen dance that was going on.
23:40 And when we opened the door light bland and the music,
23:45 I have to admit we've been listening to that kind of music.
23:48 And intended to be there but the music is self chosen
23:51 and there were all these young,
23:53 young people teenagers that were there.
23:56 And they were out on the floor.
23:57 Again I'm not gonna date myself
23:59 because they were doing the twist.
24:02 Young people they don't know what the twist is just Google it
24:06 and you'll find out what the twist is.
24:08 So they were out there on the dance floor
24:10 and didn't look like they were really
24:11 paired up as such and had never done it.
24:14 I was not intending to be at a dance,
24:16 I've never been to dance before I've been never to a dance since
24:20 but we found ourselves out there twisting around.
24:24 It was not a difficult thing to do
24:27 with a kind of music that we're playing.
24:29 And on the surface of it seemed very innocent to me
24:33 until a little bit later into the program
24:35 they came to a number and it was slow.
24:37 And right on queue the lights came way down
24:41 and as my eyes adjusting to the light
24:43 I saw that there were pairings that were taking place.
24:47 That was not taking place initially
24:50 and I began to see things happening out
24:52 on that dance floor that as a young Christian,
24:55 and I am about 17 years of age that embraced me.
24:59 And I did may be probably what I shouldn't done the very
25:02 at the very beginning I got out of there.
25:05 I knew instinctively as a young Christian
25:07 that was not a place for me to be.
25:11 Now this came even closer to me because my dad loved to dance.
25:15 My dad was not a Christian,
25:18 he was a good man but he was not a Christian.
25:20 He want to be outs club and found this woman
25:25 he was still married to my mother had a dance
25:29 and the relationship developed with this woman,
25:34 this woman who happened to be a Seventh-day Adventist.
25:39 There some places if you think about this
25:41 in a commonsense way, there are some places
25:45 that as Christians that are conducive
25:48 to our spiritual commitments.
25:51 And as the well-- and our spiritual wellbeing
25:54 it is commonsense of you think about it.
25:57 Well, I am interested in
25:59 is a growing spiritual experience.
26:03 And I know just like any good recipe
26:06 there're certain ingredients if you're baking a cake.
26:09 Ladies, you know there're certain ingredients
26:11 that are essential.
26:12 If you're gonna end up with a good product at the end
26:15 and in the spiritual light there're certain ingredients
26:19 if you want to end up with the kind of product
26:21 that you and I have invested ourselves in,
26:25 in entering into this personal relationship with Jesus.
26:29 And I would just speak for myself
26:30 this is not one of those ingredients.
26:35 It's not one of those ingredients.
26:37 Now I'm not just here to talk about dancing.
26:40 There're some places I choose not to go as a Christian
26:44 for much the same reasons.
26:46 I don't feel as a Christian that going to the clubs
26:49 and to the bars are consistent with the values
26:55 that I have as a Christian, right.
26:59 And again one need not be legalistic
27:03 to say that there're just some places.
27:06 Even with music, music which is so powerful
27:10 it's such a beautiful thing.
27:12 Did you enjoy the music this morning?
27:14 Oh man you know they've been here practicing.
27:18 And I don't know I assume that all of you love music
27:22 some of us really love music.
27:24 I have to confess publicly that you know
27:27 I have had this love affair with
27:28 music for a very, very long time.
27:30 And I do recognize that it could almost become
27:33 idolatress for me because I love music.
27:39 You know, I don't have all of the equipment that some have
27:42 and you know vocally or otherwise but I just love music.
27:47 It has been such a powerful thing.
27:49 I've had three Gospel singing groups, you know,
27:52 Maranatha Singers, Voices of Praise
27:54 and then my last group the Abundant Life Singers.
27:58 We produced albums and I just and I love,
28:01 I love Christian music that really has content to it.
28:05 The music that has real message that's been communicated--
28:08 it's been communicated in it.
28:10 And also miss though something that is
28:12 so powerful as music is that there is a dark side
28:16 to this whole thing about music too.
28:18 In general when we talk about secular music
28:20 you know, don't you? You know.
28:23 First of all the words, the lyrics ought to--
28:25 you know, they ought to be wholesome.
28:27 Won't you agree they ought to be wholesome?
28:30 But you know there is,
28:32 you know there're some interesting variations
28:34 that develop out of the whole rock scene through the years.
28:38 You know, we're into rap and you know stuff that
28:41 you know I've really don't know very well because I just--
28:45 I am not attracted to it, I don't listen to it.
28:48 They tell me the words, you know,
28:50 some of the words they actually have to label the CD's now right
28:55 for content which tells us something
28:58 but they are music fronts.
29:00 You know music is kinetic, kinetic.
29:03 Music is not only heard, music is something that is felt
29:07 those deep bass tones, you know,
29:10 that's why we love bass, don't we.
29:13 Music is something that has felt but
29:16 powerfully it can be powerful for good and evil.
29:19 My friend, as Christians as standing for something
29:22 with our value system being a light of world
29:24 as we are called to be, my friend,
29:26 again there some things that are consistent
29:29 with our profession of Jesus and something things
29:31 that I chose as a Christian to not be a part of.
29:35 It's making the choices.
29:38 And my friend, most of us,
29:40 I know we have some young people here but
29:42 most of us are at an age where
29:45 we're making our own choices, right.
29:49 And nobody is going to stand up there
29:51 to tell me what choices I ought to make.
29:53 Though should anybody stand up to try to tell you
29:55 what choices you should make?
29:58 But we can try to stimulate some thought
30:02 and some consideration of what it really means to be
30:06 a Christian in the kind of world that we live in
30:10 with the kind of choices that we are faced with.
30:13 And remember the choices all go back
30:15 to the tree of the knowledge of good and evil
30:17 and fundamentally at the heart of it,
30:19 it is a choice between God's way or the alternative way.
30:24 And my friend, look at the culture,
30:26 the Word of God is--
30:28 and the principles of the Word of God is the filter
30:30 by which we filter out our culture to determine that
30:34 which is consistent with our faith in God
30:37 and that which represents the alternative way
30:40 that's playing out for millennia down to our own time.
30:44 It can be very sophisticated at least you can see that way
30:48 and it can be seem to be very subtle.
30:51 And yet we need to have this sermon don't we?
30:54 So let's talk about the Lust.
30:57 We've talked about the Lust of the Flesh.
30:58 I mean you can spend the whole time on that.
31:00 The lust of the eyes is a fascinating phrase to me,
31:03 the lust of the eyes.
31:04 I think of Psalm 101:3 where it says
31:07 "I will set no worthless thing before my eyes,
31:10 I hate the work of those who fall away,
31:12 it shall not fasten its grip on me."
31:15 And there is this principle there is this principle
31:18 by beholding we are changed.
31:20 By beholding Jesus,
31:22 when Jesus becomes the focal point of our lives
31:25 we are by means of the Holy Spirit
31:28 and through the power of His love we're being changed.
31:34 The relationship is transformational,
31:37 we're being changed.
31:39 By beholding by focus in on that which is evil
31:43 we are being changed,
31:47 we have the modern term garbage in and garbage out.
31:52 And its true garbage in and garbage out
31:55 that's the way it works.
31:57 There are certain things I do not want to see.
32:00 There're certain things I do not want to hear.
32:04 Because the Bible says "As a man thinketh so is he."
32:08 And we are to a great extent what we think
32:13 and we think is sum total of what these receptors
32:17 have been picking up and absorbing.
32:20 Receptors, the senses the things we've been seeing
32:23 and the things that we're hearing.
32:24 Which means-- of course I got to go to Philippians 4:8,
32:28 the New Testimony page 156, 156 Philippians 4:8.
32:34 And I know for some of us in the context of the past
32:37 and the context of those who are so doughier and sober
32:41 and so much into the dos and don'ts.
32:44 For some of us its going to be a little bit of challenge
32:47 to look at this text in a little different perspective
32:50 that may be its been presented to us before.
32:53 Philippians 4:8 "Finally, brethren, whatever is true,
32:57 whatever is honorable, whatever is right,
33:01 whatever is pure, whatever is lovely,
33:03 whatever is a good repute, if there is any excellence
33:08 and if anything worthy of praise,
33:10 dwell on these things."
33:12 Then King James says "let your mind dwell on these things."
33:16 Now that's a pretty high standard you would have to admit
33:19 because we really talking about Christian values
33:22 and we have values as Christians.
33:24 One way or the other we have them
33:25 and they're demonstrated by the things that we value.
33:29 So think on these things I mean,
33:31 I mean that's pretty high, it's just got to be true,
33:34 it's got to be right, pure, lovely.
33:36 It's got be of good repute all of those things.
33:38 And so I discovered that long ago
33:41 in my teenage years as I was in academy
33:43 I found myself of that part of the library,
33:45 I finally realized I was becoming obsessed with it
33:49 and that was science fiction.
33:51 And I made a decision again about
33:52 my junior year in academy that
33:56 because I just couldn't keep my hands of it.
33:59 It was just fascinating reading stuff
34:01 but it wasn't true and I knew it wasn't true
34:04 and indulge things about it that as a young Christian
34:06 that really did bother me as fascinating
34:08 as I founded to be.
34:10 And so I discovered there were plenty of other
34:13 parts of the library that I really enjoy.
34:18 And I just picked up-- I was at the library
34:20 last this last Thursday and I picked up autobiography
34:25 written by Tony Blair's wife.
34:28 I know Tony Blair's somebody I, you know,
34:30 I find to be a fascinating person
34:32 and so I love biographies and I love history
34:35 and you know what, there is so much of it.
34:37 I know, I don't feel the pain
34:39 of not being able to visit certain parts of the library.
34:42 You know I've just, I just decided novels
34:45 and that's sort of thing for me as a Christian personally
34:47 for me when there are so much out there
34:50 that's true and that's good and wholesome
34:53 why do I-- it's not like
34:54 I'm gonna miss good reading, entertaining reading,
34:58 you know, they're just better choices.
35:02 "I will set no worthless thing before my eyes."
35:05 Let's talk about pornography this morning.
35:07 And when we're talking about a media dominated culture
35:11 my friend, with all the choices we have
35:13 on the internet and we've cable and satellite
35:16 and I mean it goes on and on and on.
35:20 We have choices to make and our values as Christians
35:25 will be reflected in the kind of choices
35:28 that we make, won't it.
35:32 If my profession Jesus does not reflect in choices
35:36 I make then what is that's saying
35:39 or to say that it doesn't matter as a Christian
35:42 in regards to the choices I make.
35:44 What is that really is saying?
35:46 It's saying that faith is just simply
35:50 a one fuzzy feeling that you have in your heart
35:55 but really doesn't have a lot of meaning
35:58 in the nitty-gritty of life out there.
36:03 This idea, you know,
36:04 you can do just whatever you want to do.
36:08 Well, you know what,
36:10 we are free to do whatever we want to do
36:13 but whatever we want to do always carries some consequences
36:17 as the tree of the knowledge of good and evil clearly showed.
36:20 They were free to choose
36:23 but it certainly its consequences, didn't it.
36:26 So we're free to choose.
36:28 God does not compel us to but it's their correlation
36:32 between what I believe and what I choose.
36:36 Well, let's give you some statistics
36:37 when it comes to the pornographic and videos,
36:39 internet, cable, paper view, $13.3 billion a year.
36:44 People are making tons of money out of the lust of the eyes.
36:50 As you look up pornographic titles
36:51 released in United States going back to 1988
36:54 that little bit bar way up there compare to 2005
36:58 the latest statistics I have notice, we have,
37:03 we have a growing problem
37:07 in the area of pornography from 1988 to 2005.
37:11 And my friend, this is not been produced
37:14 without there being a market for it
37:17 and there is a huge market
37:18 evidently within United States for it, right.
37:23 And then when you look at pornographic websites
37:25 compared to other countries this bar graph notice,
37:31 pornographic websites the US, that good old USA
37:36 represents 89% of the pornographic websites
37:40 that are been produced and in that you can find
37:44 Russia's somewhere and that which just surprises me.
37:46 And Poland and Netherlands and U.K and Germany,
37:49 Australia et cetera they're just little tiny slices.
37:54 Of course may be they don't need to be produce a lot
37:56 because the US is producing so much of it.
38:06 2006 statistics reveal that on any given day,
38:09 40 million adults in this country
38:11 visit a pornographic website.
38:13 Forty million a day statistically.
38:16 It is a serious problem within the church.
38:19 We are not untainted by this.
38:22 Some of us because of the lust of the flesh
38:25 or and the lust of the eyes are been drawn into pornography.
38:31 We are.
38:32 I'm not gonna ask you to hold your hand up
38:35 but some of us are being drawn into it.
38:36 Surprisingly, a significant number of pastors
38:39 were found to be entangled with pornography.
38:41 That's troubling when you look at that.
38:44 Ninety percent of all 8 to 16 year olds
38:46 have viewed internet pornography.
38:50 My friend, it represents abject slavery,
38:56 it does abject slavery
39:00 and we usually take it but primarily for men but men
39:04 when we get involved with pornography
39:07 our view of women is at stake.
39:11 How do we look upon women? How do we view them?
39:15 Are they objects of passion
39:20 or are they what God designed them to be?
39:27 So we have some choices in all of this.
39:29 We do but it is an addiction, it is a addictive
39:33 and those of us who may be into pornography
39:37 knows something of the grip this has upon our lives.
39:42 And I want to tell you it is only going to be
39:45 by the saving power of Jesus Christ
39:48 that that kind of the addiction will be broken.
39:52 My friend, there is better way.
39:54 Sex is a wonderful thing in the context
39:56 for which God created it.
39:59 Within the context of marriage,
40:01 in the context of a committed married relationship,
40:04 it's a wonderful thing.
40:06 And the sex is not of itself
40:09 as God created it dirty or inappropriate.
40:13 You didn't know you're gonna get a little bit
40:14 of a lesson course here about sex.
40:18 But from a Christian prospective let's be clear about it
40:23 because you know it's such a problem.
40:25 Sex is not all itself wrong, inappropriate or dirty
40:31 in the context for which God created it.
40:33 And it was not created just simply for reproduction
40:37 and for the fact that we can have children.
40:39 That's a significant part of it.
40:43 But we need to have a healthy and it holds some view of sex.
40:48 We must not be enslave to sex, must not be
40:54 because we by profession have another master
40:58 that's why I have-- I have these filter
41:00 since in 1990s Integrity Online
41:02 that filters all of the pornography
41:04 out at the service site.
41:07 It's not perfect but it does a great job
41:09 and you turn back in the 90s particularly with young boys
41:13 in my house I was not going to have that temptation.
41:17 I am going to filter it out at the site
41:19 and its great and I recommend it.
41:22 You will find it on my website, find out more about it.
41:25 But we must move on to the last one
41:26 the Pride of Life.
41:27 Oh, yes I know this one, this is the touchy one,
41:30 this is the one that seems so legalistic.
41:34 This thing on adornment and jewelry
41:36 but let's take an honest look,
41:38 an open look at what the Bible teaches.
41:41 Is there a principle in all of this and what might it be?
41:45 In 1 Peter 3:3 it says,
41:47 and this is the principle of it as I understand it.
41:49 "Your adornment must not be external."
41:53 Now some translations put in the word merely
41:55 it's always that tell us which means it's an addition
41:59 because in the Greek it is a clear cut.
42:02 Your adornment must not be external.
42:04 It talks about braiding of hair and wearing of gold jewelry
42:07 this is a great culture
42:08 so this not time of simple brace and something.
42:11 You know, they take-- we take gold and silver strands
42:14 and they would intertwine them in their hairs
42:15 which is very costly stuff but it does talk about
42:18 wearing gold jewelry or putting on dresses.
42:21 But I want to get to the positive side of this.
42:23 Don't get lost in the first part, will you.
42:27 But let it be, let what be?
42:31 Your adornment.
42:32 There is a new adornment
42:33 that is appropriate for us as Christians.
42:35 "But let it be the hidden person of the heart."
42:41 That's what it's supposed to be.
42:43 So first of all we must not have an external adornment
42:49 but we are to have an internal adornment,
42:51 the hidden person of the heart.
42:54 And who is it that is to be with in our hearts?
42:59 Whose beauty is it that has attracted us?
43:02 Whose beauty is it that is shinning through us?
43:06 It's Jesus, the beauty of His life.
43:11 And it says with the "imperishable quality."
43:14 I mean this is good stuff.
43:16 The "imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit,
43:21 which is precious in the sight of God."
43:26 And where is that gentle quite spirit comes from?
43:29 Again it comes from Jesus out of the relationship.
43:34 The one that's promised to abide in us
43:36 and we in Him.
43:41 We're just precious in the sight of God.
43:42 So what does that tell you God's looking upon?
43:44 What's God looking at?
43:46 God is looking at the heart, isn't he?
43:49 But in our culture in the world that we live in
43:53 what do we tend to be looking at?
43:57 We're looking at the exterior, aren't we?
44:00 Remember the, you know, the prophet Samuel came to
44:03 Jesse's sons they were being lined up before him.
44:06 The next king was going to be anointed
44:08 from one of Jesse's sons.
44:10 And far assigned with the oldest to the youngest
44:12 they were presented and each time
44:14 Samuel said, "oh, man he would make a great king,
44:17 what a noble bearing he had."
44:19 Until they came to last one and God said it's none of these
44:23 and Samuels said he was puzzled Jesse, it's none of them.
44:29 It was almost like after thought when Jesse said,
44:31 well, I have one other son he is a shepherd boy, he is out there.
44:34 They had to go searching for him.
44:36 And when Samuels saw him God said "that's the one."
44:42 And then it says, "man looks on the outward appearance
44:46 but God looks upon the heart."
44:48 This is a part of our value system as Christians.
44:51 We're into this worldly idea
44:53 that we value people for how they dress,
44:56 how pretty there are, how handsome or not
44:59 besides of their pocket book, the kind of cars they drive,
45:02 what kind of homes they live in or their status in life,
45:06 we as Christians that is so artificial, is it not.
45:11 We as Christians do not value people for those things,
45:14 we have a different value system it is fundamentally different.
45:18 We value people for what they are at heart.
45:22 Oh, yes, they may not be pretty.
45:25 Oh, yes, they may not be very good looking
45:28 but we value them for what they are at heart.
45:32 Its superficial what the world
45:34 is been doing to us it's so superficial.
45:36 My friend, we got a see these things
45:38 for what they are and stand apart from it.
45:41 You know 1 Timothy 2 goes on to say "Likewise,
45:44 I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing,
45:46 modestly and discreetly, not with braided."
45:49 Again this is a Greek culture.
45:51 "And gold or pearls or costly garments,
45:55 but rather by means of good works,
45:57 as is proper for women making a claim of godliness."
46:00 It's not that we shouldn't wear proper clothing
46:02 and I have learned long ago I rather spend a few extra bucks
46:05 to get a good quality suit or running shoes in my case
46:11 I found this pair of running shoes.
46:13 I spend $80-90 for them but the last may oh, hey you.
46:17 Whereas my old new balance shoes I used to use for running
46:20 would last me five or six months.
46:23 So you tell me which is more economical.
46:26 You know good piece of clothing that's gonna last you
46:28 and you know so I think we understand
46:31 the quality that's what you think.
46:33 But some will say yeah, this is all cultural.
46:35 My friend, it is multicultural
46:37 because you follow this from Jacob
46:42 who was instructed to have to have to remove the guards
46:44 from their ears and from their fingers
46:48 to the children of Israel
46:51 as it came out of the Egyptian culture.
46:53 Jacob by way that was more than Mesopotamian culture.
46:56 The Israelites as they came out of the Egypt
46:58 and God removed these things from them.
47:01 We can say that was an Egyptian culture
47:03 because they were deeply influenced it.
47:05 You find the same counsel in an Israeli culture,
47:09 you'll find this in Greek culture.
47:11 When you look at all the text and you see that
47:14 it represents different cultures it actually is multicultural.
47:20 Because the kind of the new thinking is
47:22 it came out of the Greek culture and therefore
47:26 it really isn't relevant to the American culture.
47:30 My friend, it's multicultural
47:31 and the American culture is not aside from
47:34 that phenomenon of multicultural.
47:37 And so we see it. Don't look I'm talking about.
47:42 We see it on the screen, we'd see in the,
47:43 it's like magazines the look that's been promoted.
47:48 You got to have the look and if you don't have the look
47:53 and to a greater or lesser extent
47:55 many people are bought into the look.
47:58 You know what I'm talking about.
47:59 The look the way you dress just the right way.
48:05 Again how does that fit into my relationship with Jesus?
48:09 Oh, I got to do with piercing. Oh, since I'm into it
48:11 I may as well just laid out there, right.
48:15 Isaiah 3 "Moreover the Lord said,
48:17 'Because the daughters of Zion are proud,'"
48:19 and notice the correlation between
48:21 the attitude of the heart and how they dress.
48:24 "And walk with heads held high and seductive eyes
48:28 and go along with mincing steps."
48:31 Can you see this ear minds high
48:32 "and tinkle the bangles on their feet
48:34 therefore the Lord will afflict
48:36 the scalp of the daughters of Zion with scabs."
48:39 There is just a way of saying figuratively
48:41 He is going to humble them.
48:43 And my friend, by the way
48:45 humility is a wonderful thing for us
48:48 to nurture in our love for Jesus
48:50 and in our relationship with one another, don't you think.
48:54 Anyway "In that day the Lord will take away
48:55 the beauty of their anklets, headbands, crescent ornaments,
48:59 dangling earrings, bracelets, veils, headdresses,
49:02 ankle chains, amulets, finger rings, nose rings."
49:09 Oh, that would be piercing, wouldn't it nose rings
49:12 I mean how else would you wear one.
49:15 Piercing oh, yes and piercing.
49:19 Talking about piercings, is there a human being there.
49:24 I think there is behind of all it.
49:26 Piercing and yet the body says
49:29 our bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit.
49:33 Piercings and I'm sorry you can't see that really well,
49:36 tattooing, you know
49:42 it's just real what some people do.
49:45 It's an extreme of this stuff
49:46 that really become apparent isn't it.
49:49 It's an extreme of it.
49:50 But our bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit.
49:54 We're to care for them, you know, all of this.
49:59 Oh, I got to tell you the story real quickly.
50:02 I was in New Haven, Connecticut just over a year ago.
50:05 We started on the campus of Yale University.
50:08 In that series it was wonderful to have a decision
50:11 of one of the professors of Yale who was--
50:18 want to say he was an as anesthesiologist teaching,
50:21 teaching in their school of medicine.
50:24 We also had some Chinese professors
50:27 who were there for their as training.
50:29 Among them we called her Maggie.
50:31 She was from Beijing her husband was
50:34 in the military in the Red Army,
50:36 an officer in the Red Army back in Beijing.
50:39 And she was now in this free environment.
50:42 This was like this end of October, November
50:45 stepping into early December, I had that series.
50:48 She did not miss a night because I think you'll realize
50:51 that openly they could not do this kind of thing in China.
50:55 And she was taking advantage of it.
50:58 And she made her decision, she was returning--
51:02 last February she returned to Beijing
51:04 where she taught at the University of Beijing.
51:07 And she determined I am gonna get baptized.
51:10 I'm going to accept Jesus as my Savior
51:12 and she was a part of our baptism
51:14 at the end of that series.
51:15 It was wonderful to see--
51:17 right now we have two churches in Beijing.
51:19 Made sure she knew the addresses
51:21 so that she could connect with the fellowship there
51:23 and I hope that she has done that.
51:26 And so I'm preparing her for her baptism.
51:30 We're going through the teaching and stuff
51:31 I happened to come to this one.
51:33 I've never have a reaction when it came to this
51:35 matter of adornment like I had for Maggie
51:38 because immediately she began to glow.
51:41 She got animated she says I love this one.
51:44 I have never-- I don't see one of you jumping up
51:48 when I tell about this one either.
51:50 You know but she was glowing about it,
51:52 she immediately connected with it.
51:55 And here she is coming out of China
51:59 and that just kind of blew me away
52:01 that this really appealed to her and she got it immediately.
52:04 I didn't have to go any explanations.
52:05 I just read 1 Peters 3 and she got it.
52:08 She told me this story. She said you know what?
52:10 This reminds me of my best friend.
52:13 When I first met her at the university
52:15 there was something just different about her.
52:19 One thing she was smiling a lot and she seemed happy
52:24 and she says I was attracted to her.
52:27 And we developed a friendship when we came
52:30 she is my best friend.
52:32 And she said I found out as I got acquainted with her
52:35 that she loved Jesus.
52:37 She was a Christian and that was what
52:39 was behind the smiles and the joy that she had.
52:44 And she saw that that really was what this was all talking about,
52:48 and it is what it's all talking about.
52:51 Hebrews 11 tells us "We are strangers
52:54 and we are exiles on this earth."
52:56 We're just passing through.
52:58 We're looking for a city whose builder maker is God.
53:03 And my friend, we do. We have different values.
53:06 We are His people.
53:09 And I want you to just as we end with this song,
53:12 I just want to close our eyes meditate what it means,
53:15 a privilege that is ours to know Jesus,
53:18 to be His people, to know His love and His grace.
53:23 And the call that is ours to let our light shine,
53:27 listen to the song.
53:49 Be ye holy,
53:55 holy
53:59 For the Lord God Almighty
54:04 is holy
54:07 Be ye holy,
54:13 holy For holy,
54:21 holy is the Lord
54:26 Be ye holy,
54:32 holy
54:36 For the Lord God Almighty
54:40 is holy
54:44 Be ye holy,
54:50 holy For holy,
54:57 holy is the Lord
55:03 We are His people
55:08 His holy nation
55:12 Called out of darkness
55:17 to light
55:21 We are His building,
55:26 His holy nation
55:30 We're living by faith,
55:34 not by sight
55:38 So be ye holy,
55:44 holy
55:48 For the Lord God Almighty
55:52 is holy
55:56 Be ye holy,
56:02 holy For holy,
56:09 holy is the Lord
56:16 For holy,
56:19 holy is the Lord


Revised 2014-12-17