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May 18, 2022 7:05 am
Today on Insight for living the people of God must return to a hunger and thirst for righteousness must refuse to be called worship stop watching and supporting your money to media ministries that do not feed your soul's find many pulpits drifting away from the Bible presenting a false version of the gospel. So is it too late to recover. Will our churches ever return to the biblical model today on Insight for living. Chuck Swindoll concludes this series called the church awakening will answer these pressing questions and others as we look at the Old Testament prophets for inspiration.
Chuck titled his message. It's time to restore the whole ring heard in many of church today that once have a strong and vibrant, adult fellowship, ministry and youth ministry in the children's ministry or the fellowship was authentic and love is real and grace abounded and there was a passion work of the Holy Spirit igniting lives in bringing people who were lost to a knowledge of the Savior where there was this kind of give-and-take is kind of vibrant spiritual life can't stay away from it, but now it's a hollow ring just a memory of we once had a profiteer return to a man named Amos is a country boy. He's he's a sheepherder and wanted that one going on. He was a depicts the Sycamore figs as a fig tracker from to: all things of all things the Lord's hand is on Amos and Andy says that Amos use you to minister up north right in the face of the king who was cruel and immoral and unfaithful and unfair and your to confront him with his wrongs. Amos your to speak the truth without fear and I'll go before you and I'll be with you as you do so chapter 7 verse 10 then I will desire the priest sees a false priest. He's a phony priest. He's a got a priest that tells the people around them what they want to hear and desire the priest of Bethel sent word to Jeroboam, king of Israel say Amos has conspired against you in the midst of the house of Israel. The land is unable to endure all his words a king. You gotta know something, he's back. He's right down there right there in the court for. Thus, Amos says Jeroboam will die by the sword of Israel will certainly go from its land into exile.
Now, that's not how you win friends in and gain a lot of contacts for business, but am about Amos is worried about that.
So, Amazon is telling on them saying to the king you got understand the guys back.
He's a pain now Messiah then says to Amos verse 12 goal you see your you know, get out the way to the land of Judah go back home there.
Your bread and do your prophesying, but no longer prophesy Bethel sanctuary of the king and the royal get the feeling you enough for its get out and take your sheep with you fig picker I love this. I love this response then Amos replied to Amazon, listen to me hi pockets was kind of a Swindoll paraphrase to get us into profit meaning out of the silk mom not a self-appointed man of God.
God's call me. I responded to his call. I didn't do this on my own. I am not here representing me nor my the son of a prophet. I don't have a daddy was a preacher and my granddaddy would never jump up from a long line of preachers, sheepherder, and on the fig picker.
That's the truth I'm a herdsman and a grower Sycamore figs but the Lord took me from following the flock and the Lord said to me, go prophesy to my people Israel. Now you hear the word of the Lord you were saying you shall not prophesy against Israel, nor shall you speak against the house of Isaac. Therefore, that you say that here is my answer. Thus says the Lord, your wife will become a harlot in the city. That's a good opening line, you might mention to Jeroboam's wife to be on the street while selling herself and your sons and your daughters will fall by the sword, and your land will be parceled up by a measuring line and you yourself will die upon unclean soil.
Moreover, Israel will will certainly go from its land into exile, that there is nothing easy to hear in a message like that you visit the job of God's spokesman to shape his words so that they are easy to hear all they need to be accurate. They need to be relevant, but they must not be compromised. Turn the page and look at chapter 8 verse 11 Emma Amos is not true speaking, behold, which is his way of saying pay attention days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will send a famine on the land you talk about 21st century prophecy. I will send a famine on the land it will not be a famine for bread or thirst for water, but rather for hearing the words of the Lord. People will stagger. No wonder from one coast to the other, from sea to sea from the north to the east to the west of the South going all different direction they would go to an fro there is the seeker seeking the word of the Lord, but they will not find it. I don't know of a more apt statement to define our times.
Then Amos 811 12 that false priest earlier and tried to run off the rough and rugged Amos since he confronted wrongdoing with such passion. Amos later predicted that there will come a day when the land will languish.
Longing for a strong voice for God courageously and politically incorrect standing for what is right and the famine men and women has come, we are in the midst of it aware of it.
Watch it on your television screen. Listen to religious comments made by the so-called professional.
Not all remember there are exceptions, but most and don't go by size of churches or size of offerings. Listen for the truth we heard from Ezekiel in his baleful words to a congregation that didn't want to listen.
We've interviewed Amos and watched him in action were not true until we interview briefly.
A man named Joel back to chapter 2 the book that bears his name. You thought the famine that Amos mentions is bleak by the people in Joel's day have gone through the swarms of locusts. The fact they are identified more than one says the creeping locusts and and swarming locusts and stripping locusts and knowing below seen the work of locusts. Many of you haven't.
We live in California. I stopped on my way back from Mount Herman conference center family was asleep. It was about dusk.
I pulled over to a service station and and stepped out and underneath my feet. I could feel the crunching of something. It wasn't long before my whole windshield was covered with insect and felt them getting in the back of my neck on my clothing and I quickly open the gas cap and shoved in the nozzle to make sure I didn't have a insects. To me they were just notebooks and I said to the attendant. What is this you could ease.
You can hear it.
Just like a dislike of motor running is always locusts as those blankety-blank seven-year plague that's come through said, look over there, and I look and what had once been crops were now brown stock sticking like canes out of the ground. Brown is a little with her. I looked and it was green.
They were moving removing your swarms in ancient days that would eclipse the sun as they would move into an area creeping, crawling, stripping, gnawing, locusts, and he said we live for the day.
This is over taking everything in their wake. Know what the Lord calls the locust plague in the days of the prophets in the verse 25. My great army which I sent among you, the creator of all that is able to control the creation and when he says to the locusts second or whatever you say to locusts to get a moving. It's amazing what they do is they come out of the ground and out of the larva and they their wings began to move and native Joel rights words of hope kisses create section of Scripture we see the body of people cynical because they have been exiled and then referred Amos as he stood with strength and authority in front of the king and his false priest. Now we go back further and we read of that famine that was caused by those locusts. But the good news is, that's not the end of the story. Look at chapter 2 verse 12. Here is where hope arises.
Joel is lamenting the presence of the plague in the Lord says to him, returned to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning and rend your heart and not your garments and return to the Lord your God, it's, it's the Lord saying to his people turn to me, trust me rely on me. Break your heart before me standing before me and I will be gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness. Those are words of hope. Verse 16 gather the people, sanctify the congregation assemble the elders. Verse 17 let the priest the Lord's ministers weep between the porch of the altar look at the people look at the priests look at them coming together, and there before the Lord on their faces on their knees, saying, Lord, have mercy on us had pity on us and our hearts are broken over our lives. Verse 18.
Then then verse 25 then this is the result of God's blessing that comes in the wake of repentance.
Then the Lord will be zealous for his land. Verse 18 I will have pity on my people.
The Lord will answer and say to his people.
I'm going to send you grain new wine and oil. You will be satisfied in full with them and I will never again make you a reproach among the nations. 25 then I will make up to you for the years the locusts have eaten one of my favorite verses in all the Scriptures. I promise to you when you do what you must do. I will make up for the years the locus of Eden and the promise continues 26 you shall have plenty to eat and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God, who has dealt wondrously with you in my people will never be put. That is the day I wait for that is a day of revival know what we do to get there. Let's acknowledge three changes that must occur in a minute ask you to write them down, you'll forget them and you'll need them, so I want you to write them down three changes that we must acknowledge in order for there to be this kind of end of the famine and the beginning of God's favor upon the church first.
The people of God must return to a hunger and thirst for righteousness, the people of God must return to a hunger and thirst for righteousness, you must weary of eating husks and leftovers and being entertained you must demand a halt to superficial religion. You must refuse to be entertained and have it called worship, you must openly state, we expect more of our pastor than a 12 minute sermon that we will not put up with that any longer. These United States don't do provide for us the opportunity to protest and I think it's high time the people of God protested against those who have taken the church in the wrong direction. Stop watching and supporting and sending your money to media ministries that do not feed your soul's do that soon it it's as simple as that.
If they don't have the finances they cannot continue and there are those who continue continue to support back in the days when grace was hardly mentioned, I decided I would do a series on the great grades later came to be called the grace awakening in that series.
I said it's time to stop submitting to legalists.
It's time for us to quit living like were under the law is time to stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ is made us free, and I it was like a voice in the wilderness.
I wasn't the only voice but there weren't many. And from that came the whole movement and that the and and the famine that had been ignored long enough began to to to shift and change it now. Legalists are exposed for what they are and grace abound sends away at all to be in the church of Jesus Christ.
Second, the ministers of God must repent of their failure to fulfill their calling ministers of the gospel must repent of their failure to fulfill God's call in their lives with people in the medical profession failed to fulfill their calling. There's no question it's called malpractice and we won't stand for it.
We will take on if necessary. The whole Association because we been wrong physically when investors take advantage of our money and they use it for their good their own lining of their profit up pockets. It's called fraud. It's a criminal act. We don't stand for stand against.
But when ministers failed to do the responsibility it it's it's it's it's amazing how people put up with it back to Peterson. He writes I don't know of any other profession in which it is quite as easy to fake it as an hours by adopting a reverential demeanor cultivating a stained-glass voice slipping occasional words them like eschatology and files go shifting into our discourse. We are trusted without any questions asked.
As stewards of the mysteries, even when an occasional fits of humility or honesty. We disclaim sanctity.
We are not believe we provide a bare-bones outline of pretense they take it as the real thing and run with it imputing to us clean hands and pure hearts. It's an honest statement. Ministers need to stop thinking it media declare that their lazy that the brother play golf and do their work in their study.
Wonder how many ministers have more than three shelves of books. Most of the paperbacks. I wonder how many of them really do spend time with God really do pour their heart out before God really do plead for the souls of the lost it's time for there to be repentance from the phoniness from the greed from the perfunctory spirit from the lack of diligence and devoted prayer we in ministry need to return to the study to meditation to seeking God's mind to courageous and contagious preaching to zealous and passionate passionate service for God are counseling needs to be honest we need to confront wrong. We need to stop hobnobbing with the wealthy. We need to stop playing favorites and ignoring our wives and children in the process. Who knows how many could claim ministry as their first wife wives way longing for the love and affection of their husbands who were married to the church that calls for repentance, repent's every one of my mentors as I look back at a strong home and family, because every one of them was devoted to his wife and his children doesn't mean they all turned out right or they were all great are all flawed individuals, but there was no question. Ministry was second to the responsibility of the home and family. Most of all to the relationship with the living God.
Repentance is needed. I think I got the point across. The third is the third writing down the house of God needs to represent its biblical purpose for existence the house of God needs and must represent its purpose for existence. It is a house of prayer. It's not a house of business. It is a house of worship. It is in the house of corporate planning. It is a place of protection for children and for single women in the vulnerable and the broken and the bruised in life. The house of God is a refuge for those who have special needs and can't keep up those who are trying hard but can never find their way even to the realm of average we are to have a place for them. It's a harbor of hope for those who are addicted and struggling even through a divorce, trying to find a reason to go on and may I add it as a model of art and beauty, grand music, creative expression of such new songs, lovely surroundings, and may I add, inviting the up and out as well as the down and out.
Where do those people go who are who have this world's good, why wouldn't be an evangelical church. Why would they have only the choice of another place where they're going to get 10 or 12 minutes to hear what they want to hear.
It's time for the church to awaken. I love the way this man puts it direct. Preaching is always marked the proclamation of God's man down through the ages know was a message on the steps going up to the art is not something good is going to happen to you. Amos was not confronted by the high priest of Israel for proclaiming confession's position name and claim, Jeremiah was not put into the pit for preaching. I'm okay you're okay Daniel was not put in the lion's den for telling people possibility thinking will move mountains, John the Baptist was not forced to preach in the wilderness individually beheaded because he said smile God loves you. The two prophets of the tribulation will not be killed for preaching God is in his heaven and all is right with the world pastors who were committed to biblical exposition must have a confront development in their preaching is better to be divided by truth and to be united in ever. It is better to speak the truth that hurts and heels than falsehood that comforts and kill it is not love. It is not friendship.
If we fail to declare the whole counsel of God. It's better to be hated for telling the truth than to be loved for telling a lie. It is better to stand alone with the truth than to stand for wrong with a multitude we are in hard times.
The church is barely surviving. There was no Rip van Winkle to awaken. We are to be awakened. We are to be the ones the church of the living God saying that is enough and I will not tolerate it. Let's bow our heads billiards with me please, Lord God have mercy upon us in the midst of all of the locusts and all of the desolation and all of the barrenness that is calm as a result of the times in which we live. Raise up by your grace, raise up a remnant that will be characterized by the kind of stuff marked Ezekiel and Amos make us women and men of God culture that doesn't care in the world. It's lost its way to guard us from stupid out of balance over reactionary action give us the courage to stand for standings is so that we might survive the fact that we might one day again, your grace, which awaken your true is our prayer in the name of sourcing. Everybody said a man is the daily radio program note around the world as insight for living and with Chuck Swindoll's closing prayer, we conclude our nine part teaching series called the church awakening and if you'd like to learn more about Chuck Swindoll in this ministry. Visit us email@example.com. It was not often were able to offer a book that complements Chuck's teaching on this program, but today is the exception. Chuck wrote a full-length book that was inspired by our current study. It's also called the church awakening and this is the very last day will feature this resource on the program if you been tended to request a copy now is the time to respond insight for living has never intended to replace the church and we never will instead were focused on helping you find a local church where the biblical model is honored and one that allows you and your family to experience all that God intended to purchase a copy of the church awakening go to insight.org/offer or call us if you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888. Once you're finished reading this book you want to share with your pastor as well and insight for living were pleased to receive notes, letters and phone calls from friends who affirm the value of this daily program might be encouraged to hear this one it said. I'm a pastor in southern Texas. I'm 70 years old but going strong. Preachers need to have a preacher to an Chuck is my preacher insight for living brings me daily inspiration, accountability, and instruction in God's word. Thank you and God bless is not great when we inspire the pastor of the church were impacting all the people who attend church as well and when you give a contribution to insight for living you're making these moments possible to give a donation right now. Call us if you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888 to give a donation online today go to insight.org/bill my join us tomorrow when Chuck Swindoll starts our next this time on the remarkable life of David join us Thursday to hear insight for living. The preceding message. It's time to restore the years was copyrighted in 2008 and 2010 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2010 by Charles R.
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