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April 22, 2022 7:05 am
Today from Chuck Swindoll deal longer, thinking we operate in our own way.
When we get there is a sovereign God who hovers over time. You have nothing to fear serving your sovereign. He never slumbers her sleep. He is our master, our creator God, but the history of your congregation goes all the way back to the first century and to truly understand your purpose as a local church family.
It's imperative to trace your origins to the very beginning today on Insight for living. Chuck Swindoll invites us to follow along in the book of acts as we look at the infancy of the early church will discover the factors that contribute to a healthy church in our generation and we begin with prayer Laura King of heaven and without your vision. We have none without your son, we have no hope. Without your forgiveness. We have no relief. Lord life lived without hope and without relief is a futile and miserable way to exist. So, our souls praise you King of heaven and we lift our hearts to you. Some hurt so deeply they can hardly sing their mind can hardly focus. Some come today with bird so heavy they cannot get free of them.
I pray that you will very graciously relieve them of that heaviness. That sense of depression and discouragement watch over those whose arms ache for their loved ones wearing our uniform.
Will God hold them close to you protecting protect us from terrorism protect us from the adversary who would love to. We can then disrupt the ministry steal the joy of our life. Father, we are yours, and therefore the gifts we give are not really our gifts.
They are gifts for you, provided by your grace. We thank you for the privilege of giving the pleasure of praying we do both in the name of Jesus are seen everyone's like for living to search the Scriptures with Chuck Swindoll. Be sure to download his searching the Scriptures. Studies by going to inside world.org/studies and now the message from Chuck called challenges and struggles, solutions, priorities, when the church is doing what it is been called to do, we will become the most attractive and contagious body of people in the community, not when we mimic what is around us, but when we revealed a life marked by values and purpose and meaning and definition.
Now let's go from today's church back to the first century is not a perfect setting, but it is certainly more pristine than ours today. These were people who understood persecution and martyrdom was commonplace, the fear of God was regular experience.
The hand of God in their lives was palpable and they began to grow and they grew rapidly. The end of chapter 2 tells us that their number was being added to day by day as the Lord bless them, so they were growing.
Chapter 4 verse four picks up where that leaves all many of those who had heard the message believed in the number of the men came to be about 5000 began it over 3000, and now it's 5000, and we were to go on for the book of acts. As Bruce calls it does the spreading flaming just increases the spreading flame of the church grows nothing wrong with rapid growth, but if things are handled correctly began to disintegrate. I made a list of some things that are work that can occur as a result of growth that's that's rapid uncertain. The uncertainty of purpose, blurred vision, fuzzy and compromised priorities.
The tendency away from volunteerism and toward professionalism. That's a big one, the church can get slick it's ministers can become perfunctory in their tasks, brothers and sisters were not running a professional organization will at the worldview that this isn't building with the crosstalk on top is a ministry, we do not look to the government of the state to guide us.
This is a ministry.
Now you can expect as the first church experience. There will be strong resistance that that's always true fact we just read a bit earlier chapter, forget verse one after the man is healed in chapter 3 as Peter and John are speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the guard in the side to see these are all the professionals they came up to them and they were greatly disturbed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead dare you do that, we just nailed to a cross dare you tell people that is been raised from the dead. We put them in a grave.
Somebody stole the body by the way, they've never been able to produce the skeleton and never found the body, but that's beside the point. These men are trying to silence the spokesman for Christ. So they laid their hands on them.
Verse three they put them in jail until the next day for it was already evening, but the lest you think that Peter was intimidated.
I want you to see his response.
Verse eight. He's in jail. These men have the power to make his life pretty miserable. Certainly to torture him and he's filled with the spirit. Verse eight he said to them, rulers and elders of the people we are on trial today for a benefit done to a sick man as to how this man is been made well let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene who you crucified God raised from the dead by this name. This man stands here before you in good health. He is the stone which was rejected by you, the builders, and which became the chief cornerstone. There is so no other. There is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.
He is in intimidated. You have to love it as they observed the confidence of Peter and John and understood that they were uneducated and untrained men before we go any further. See the word uneducated.
The Greek word means unlettered, let you guess the next one untrained is the Greek word any old high unlettered idiots. They were amazed.
They were just amazed the began to recognize them as having been with Jesus, I love it. Look at the courage of these look at the courage of these two men they not realize we can make their lives that when you are filled with the Spirit and speaking for Christ you're invincible and not filled with fright over what men will say or do. I love you when Kent Hughes admitted in one of his books.
There were times in his preaching. He is so lost in the message that he simply vehicle of communication.
I've had the experience. There are times I couldn't give you my name. There are times that theirs is a sense of invincibility in the decoration of the message. Nothing is more important on earth that that's what Peter and John are going through verse 18 when they had summoned them, they commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. You think that's good to stop those got the next verse, Peter and John answered and said to them, whether it's right in the sight of God, to give EDU rather than to God.
You be the judge. For we cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard how good is that they threaten them further they let them go. Finding no basis on which to punish them watch closely on account of the people because they were all glorifying God for what happened for the man was more than 40 years old, on whom this miracle of healing been performed and when they had been released. They went to their own companions and reported that all the chief priests and the elders and what that all said to them, and when they heard this, I said we better shudder down. It's getting to be a hard stop know they didn't do that, they lifted their voices to God and with one accord. They said all Lord it is you who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all that in that that is in them by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of our father David, your servant said this in the quote from the Scripture verse 29, and now Lord, take note of their threats and grant that your bond servants may speak your word with all confidence in the verse 33.
Abundant grace was upon them all. How wonderful. Strong resistance occurred met by a courageous response in the standard mute. They stood their ground.
We can explain to you all the rules and regulations that you come up with but please know this, we answer to want higher and greater than you, they were implying your puny little rules and threats mean nothing to us. There is a greater power and he will honor his word, thought of that when I was recipient of a wonderful story sent to me by a federal judge, a friend of mine who lives up in Washington, DC area to California Highway Patrol officers were conducting speeding enforcement on I 15 just north of the Marine Corps air Station at Miramar. One of the officers were using a handheld radar device to check speeding vehicles approaching the crest of a hill. The officers were suddenly surprised when the radar gun began reading 500 mph. The officer attempted to reset the radar gun, it would not only not reset it shut down. Just then a deafening roar over the treetops revealed that the radar had in fact walked on to United States Marine Corps F-18 hornet which was engaged in low-flying exercise near the location all over their head comes this aircraft back at the CHP headquarters.
The patrol And fired off a complaint to the Marine Corps base commander. The reply came back in true Marine Corps style love it. Thank you for your letter. We cannot complete the file in this incident, you may be interested to know that the tactical computer in the F-18 had detected the presence of, and subsequently locked onto your hostile radar equipment and automatically sent a jamming signal back to it. Which is why it was shut down.
Furthermore and air to ground missile aboard the aircraft. It also automatically locked onto your hostile equipment location. Fortunately, the Marine pilot flying the hornet recognize the situation for what it was quickly responded to the missile system alert and was able to override the automated defense system before the missile was launched to destroy the hostile radar position. Our pilot also suggest you cover your mouth when cussing at them since the video systems in these jets are very high resolution.
Sgt. Johnson, the officer holding the radar gun should get his dentist to check his left rear molar. It appears the filling is loose. Also, the snap is broken on his handgun holstered.
Thank you for your concern. Semper Fi big deal longer, thinking we operate in our own way. When we forget that there is a sovereign God who hovers over our times and our season's you have nothing to fear serving your sovereign God. He never slumbers or sleeps. He never says Sir to anyone he never asks permission of anybody nor should he.
He is our master, our creator God and we as a church answer to him and exalt and please and thank him for the cross and for his son gives these people. This sense of invincibility well is that dies down.
There is a little internal problem that crops up see it's an early church of the first century church, but depravity is alive and well within it. So what we find in chapter 5 is a husband-and-wife team who hypocritically act like they are giving all the prophets in the sale of the land to the work of God, when in fact they held some back for themselves. Nothing wrong with having property. Nothing wrong with selling property in me I have. There's nothing wrong with holding back some of the profit for yourself, something's wrong when you act like you're getting all the profit that's called hypocrisy.
This total lack of integrity. What's how it is exposed.
Chapter 5 a man named Ananias, with his wife Safari sold a piece of property, and kept back some of the price for himself with his wife's full knowledge and bringing a portion of it, elated the apostles feet. What we can't read is in between the lines, there is the clearly the statement made or some kind of evidence that were giving you all as a result of our selling this, Peter says to Ananias, verse three. Why is Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land. Now folks before we go any further, that's what I call a confrontation you imagine a one man saying to another man. Why has Satan filled your heart so that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and in fact to the people of this is simply while it remained unfolded, it remained not remain your own and after it was sold, was it not under your control. Was it.
Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart not lied to men but to God. You see to Peter the most significant presence was the Lord's presence. That's the way it is mature. It is the Lord we magnify the Lord we exalt.
It is the Lord we serve is the Lord, to whom we answer not lied to men but to God. Dare you do that look further as he heard these words, Ananias fell down and breathed his last. And great fear came over all who heard of it, young man got up and covered them up and after carrying amount buried in now watch closely there laughed an interval of about three hours and his wife came in not knowing what happened and Peter responded to her, tell me what you sold the land for such and such a price. She said yes that was the price. Peter said to her, why is it you've agreed together to put the spirit of the Lord to the test. Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door and they will carry you out as well. Immediately she fell at his feet, breathed her last young men came in and found her dead.
They carried out buried her beside her husband, and great fear came over the whole church over all who heard these vans have the old country preacher once said, if things were handled today as they were in the first century, every new church should be built with the morgue in the basement. I checked our new building, no more know what the problem was lack of integrity.
You know what it such a big problem because so many people were counting on so few to walk in integrity. You can't compromise your integrity without affecting the church. I can't play with the churches money fast and loose in expected not affect the trigger. It's God's money is my money it's the elders money. We can't play fast and loose with our morals are our lives are in his hands. How could we live a lie and stand and tell you to be holy serious business folks you can sleep around and be a physician you can sleep around and be an attorney, you can sleep around and be an educator, you can sleep around and get away with being a minister of the gospel, the terrible price to pay. Can't hold his own. Seriously, accountable, and it didn't divide the church when there was this divine discipline they operated under heightened fear of God, how healthy is that I'll tell you that will hold you pure you paint you play fast and loose with God. You can watch whatever channel you want to wanted television set.
Go wherever you want to on the Internet and carry on. However you like will you trust in a holy God with fear and trembling very very fragile as you think through your lifestyle and realize you're hanging very heavy weights on very thin. Why should know the council doesn't give up the grab him again put them into prison and they threatened with her life in the seas stop doing this, we demand that you will become silent.
Verse 29 Peter and the apostles answered chapter 529. We must obey God rather than men. Verse 33 when they heard this, they were cut to the quick and they intended to kill Gamaliel stepsiblings is way way way way is think this through, so they listen to Gamaliel and then verse 40 they took his advice.
After calling the apostles and they flog them don't don't go too quickly over that it's a terrible torture when they scourged Jesus.
This is like under that government flogged probably not even contained probably not have blood come out in your skin because someone beat you because of your faith publicly.
Not the flock and ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus and then said here so they went on their way from the presence of the Council. Verse 41 what was it say rejoicing.
Praise God from whom all blessings flow. Praise him all creatures here below.
Praise father son and Holy Ghost.
What an honor to suffer for his namesake. That's what verse 41 is all about the work they considered themselves up, grateful considered worthy to suffer shame for his name, what in Norma's stature every day in the temple from house to house. Don't you love it. They kept right on preaching, teaching that Jesus is the Christ. I love this kind of preaching. I love the story I got to remind me of J. Vernon McGee point talk about.
Daniel said the reason the lines that needed was three fourths backbone of the risk gristle. That's what Peter and John are you not to intimidate and threaten them in the with their their ally is the answer to the living God and not afraid of men are not afraid of the authorities of the world system. This is message number two when Chuck Swindoll's nine part series called the church awakening and there's much more teaching coming ahead as we close out another week of Bible studies on inside for living will take a moment to thank those of you who share your comments with us. It such an encouragement to hear how God is working in your life. Let me encourage you with the recent note that read Chuck I been listening to you since the mid-1970s. You let my husband and me out of legalism week since become part of a Bible-based and grace focused church moments like these are made possible because loyal friends like you support inside for living and of God's prompting you to get a contribution give us a call if you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888 today were especially mindful of the countless people in Ukraine who are suffering with unwanted circumstances as they do all remind you that for many years, inside for living has been speaking into this part of the world we done so through Chuck's Bible teaching translatable languages such as Polish and Romanian. These ministries are part of our long-range strategic plan to make disciples for Jesus Christ in all 195 countries of the world.
Our office in the United States, along with other international offices are allocating funds as able to publish and Romanian offices to help ease what physical suffering we can and help offer spiritual comfort in the love and power of Christ to give a donation to Insight for living's general ministry go to Insight.org/donate one more thing, as we step into another weekend whenever you can supplement your Sunday morning church attendance by joining us online for the live worship service at Stone Breyer Community Church. In addition to hearing Chuck's sermon. Good to hear the sacred music by the choir and congregation is well defined all the instructions were screaming Insight.org/Sundays Monday on Insight for living. The preceding message challenges, struggles, solutions priorities was copyrighted in 2008 2010 and 2022 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2022 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. all rights are reserved worldwide.
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