Not to count my own private walk with Christ. My flesh doesn't have to do any of that. My flesh does not have to pray to get stronger, does not have to study, is born Superman. It is so corrupted.
It is activated instantly. And this is the fight that is worth fighting. And those who don't fight this fight are lost because they don't think it's worth it. We think it's worth it because worthy is the Lamb. That's why we worship Him. If you like this video, please subscribe to Pastor Rick's radio.
Specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching. Rejection Galore is the title of Pastor Rick's message. And today he'll be teaching in Acts chapter 7. They're not going there.
Unless your righteousness exceeds that of the Pharisees and scribes, you shall not enter the kingdom of heaven. That's how he told them. And there on their side, well he didn't bow down to us. He's not recognizing us. Look at our robes. I mean is anybody cooler than us? Look at this big hat I've got on my head.
It's a little problem when I get into a car, but it's still nice. It says God was with him. God is with every Christian. You look at the life of Joseph and you say, did Joseph have a time where he could complain and doubt God? He had a whole bunch. He had years of it. 17 of them.
Almost. John chapter 8, Jesus said, and he who sent me is with me. The Father has not left me alone. And God was with Jesus too. Stephen's pointing it out. The day came, of course, as when the brothers confessed their sin. But these, these potted plants in front of Stephen, they're not confessing their sin. They're escalating their sins.
They're going to notch it up. Joseph revealed himself, Genesis 42. Then they said to one another, we are truly guilty concerning our brother for we saw the anguish of his soul when he pleaded with us and we would not hear.
Therefore, this distress has come upon us. That was right before Joseph let him, let him know it was him. Well anyway, back to this, the anguish of his soul. That's what Joseph endured for his God. And we never read about Joseph complaining, doubting God.
Me, I'm in traffic, a long line in the store gets me upset. Lord, where are you? I can't believe it. Well okay, it's not that bad, but maybe it is for you because you might not be as righteous as me. Verse 17. Imagine somebody being that stupid to believe that. I mean, anyway.
Verse 17, but when the promise drew near, which God had sworn to Abraham, the people grew and multiplied in Egypt. I feel like I'm reading a book to you. You know, you just see people with the things and they're listening to a book. What are you doing, listening to a book? That's cheating. You can't be reading, listening to books. You got to read them. Alright, back to this. It's not cheating.
They're bookworms, they're tapeworms. It's that simple. Till another king arose who did not know Joseph.
This man dealt treacherously with our people and oppressed our forefathers. That's not one, two, three, four of them. Making them expose their babies so that they might not live. Today they abort them. That's what they call it.
That's not what it is. So this religion of Molech worship is still happening under the name of liberalism and a woman's right to kill the unborn. It's because they do not believe life starts at conception. We're supposed to help them when life begins. They might want to end your life by telling them that they're so passionate about this as Satan. Satan has got them.
Alright, I'm going down a little rabbit trail. Verse 20, because we're going to come to that in a moment. We just did, in fact, with Pharaoh wanting to kill all the male children of the Jews. Verse 20, at this time Moses was born and was well pleasing to God and he was brought up in his father's house for three months. But when he was set out, Pharaoh's daughter took him away and brought him up as her own son. Okay, the Bible says Moses was a beautiful baby.
Which makes you say, what are you saying, Lord? Are the other ones ugly? And they aren't really. Well, all of them are ugly when they first come out.
I know you ladies don't agree with that, but we men know better. Of course, to me, they're just so cute, right? Well, what does it mean that he was a beautiful baby? His cuteness was irresistible. And so his mom says, no way I'm going to do this child in. And then when Pharaoh's daughter sees him, you know, his cuteness is irresistible.
And she takes him in as her own. And so it's sort of like, you know, a miracle of cuteness that God performed on Moses. Verse 22, and Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was mighty in words and deeds. Now when he was 40 years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren, the children of Israel. And seeing, verse 24, one of them suffer wrong, he defended and avenged him who was oppressed and struck down the Egyptian. Verse 25 now, for he supposed that his brethren would have understood that God would deliver them by his hand. But they did not understand. And the next day, he appeared to two of them as they were fighting and tried to reconcile them, saying, Men, you are brethren. Why do you wrong one another? Verse 27, but he who did his neighbor wrong pushed him away saying, Who made you a ruler and judge over us? Who died and left you the boss?
Is what he's asking. Verse 28, Do you want to kill me as you did the Egyptian yesterday? Then at this saying, Moses fled and became a dweller in the land of Midian where he had two sons. Well, he couldn't do anything right in ministry. He couldn't bury a body and get away with it.
This is a practice that we are all susceptible to. Serving God without being sent by God. Moses was going to deliver his people. He felt that I'm here now and I'm going to change things. Moses put himself in the midst of a fight that God did not call him to and it was a disaster.
Great lessons. But where Stephen is going is Moses was rejected by the Jews on his first visit to his people. He tried to break up a fight between two Jewish people and they rejected him, at least the one, the smart aleck one. You've got to wonder, was that guy still alive and with the Jews when they left Egypt and Moses leading them out?
There's enough time for it to happen. Anyway, you can reference John 1 verse 11 and Jesus says, John writes, he came to his own and his own did not receive him. The Gentiles in chapter 13, when Paul is rejected at the synagogue, the Gentiles said, come tell us. Well, funny thing about Moses, his people reject him when he first came. Where does he flee to? He flees to the desert and he ends up at the house of Jethro, a Gentile. Now, Stephen doesn't see the church going in that direction. None of them do, not yet.
It won't happen until later and it will be a tough transition, but it's here. Just so much to teach us from the Bible about how to be Christians. We look at the first Christians because they got it right overall.
Well, Zephyr and Ananias didn't get it right, but of course, that's not our model. Verse 30, and when the 40 years had passed, an angel of the Lord, now that's Bible talk for a Theophany. He's talking about the burning bush, appeared to him in a flame of fire in a bush in the wilderness of Mount Sinai. In other words, it's God using a created instrument to speak to man. The cloud that followed them in the daytime, the Shekinah and then the fire at night. Those are Theophanies, manifestations of God in a created item.
A Christophany is when God does it in human form. For example, they came to visit with Abraham, the two angels and the Lord, or when they visited with Samson's parents. Verse 31, when Moses saw it, he marveled at the sight as he drew near to observe. The voice of the Lord came to him. Verse 32, saying, I am God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob. And Moses trembled and dared not look. Then Yahweh said to him, take your sandals off your feet for the place where you stand as holy ground.
This is big. You're listening again, waiting to bust him and say something wrong. You're listening and if you're a Christian, you're enjoying the recap. They're not thinking it that way, approaching it that way. But this is holiness.
Listen to this. God said to, in Exodus 3, 5, the section he's quoting from, God said to Moses, do not draw near. Then God says at the same time, and this is grace, the place where you stand is holy. Don't come near, but you stand in holy ground.
That's amazing. That's holiness. You can go but so far and it's grace, but you can come close enough. And that place that you come to where God is, is pure. Moses had to learn what it meant to stand in the presence of a holy God. You just can't sashay on up to God like, hey buddy, what's up?
Maybe if you make up a God, you can do that, but not a holy and awesome God. Well, if Moses had to learn to not be presumptuous, if Moses had to be taught by God how to approach God, so does everybody else. That's why we read about Abraham on his face before the Lord, speaking to him. Verse 34, I have surely seen the oppression of my people who are in Egypt. I have heard their groaning and have come down to deliver them, and now come, I will send you to Egypt. Verse 35, this Moses whom they rejected saying, who made you a ruler and a judge is the one God sent to be ruler and a deliverer by the hand of the angel who appeared to him in the bush.
Verse 36, he brought them out after he had shown wonders and signs in the land of Egypt and in the Red Sea and in the wilderness 40 years. So, added to Joseph coming and being rejected the first time by his brethren is Moses. He comes along and he's rejected the first time by his brethren. Christ's name is added to that. All three were rejected the first time they came to the people.
All three were sent to the people by God. He is despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows acquainted with grief, and we hid as it were our faces from him. He was despised and we did not esteem him. Why didn't they see that when Christ walked?
What was the charge against him? Why can't he be the Messiah? Look at the miracles he's doing. Well, their criteria was, well, he's got to like us. If he's going to be Messiah, he's got to recognize who we are. Well, he didn't do that. He recognized who they were. But in the negative, verse 37, this is that Moses who said to the children of Israel, Yahweh your God will rise up for you a prophet like me from your brethren, him you shall hear.
Well, we covered this last session. We covered it in chapter 3 when Peter first brought this up, pointing to this verse as the authority of scripture to recognize who Christ was. Jesus said this, You searched the scriptures for in them you think you have life and these are they which testify of me. But you are not willing to come to me that you may have life. And then he goes on to say there in John chapter 5, For if you believed Moses you would believe me for he wrote about me.
Jesus is owning that verse. But they would have none of that. Their minds were closed. Well, there are times when the minds should be closed.
Straight is the way, narrow is the gate. There are wicked things that we ought to close our minds to if we can. But when it comes to truth and fact, we have to be open to these things.
Pilate did not even want to entertain it. Now what is truth? And he didn't give Christ a chance to answer and say you're looking at the truth.
You're looking at the way and the life. Verse 38, This is he who was in the congregation in the wilderness with the angel who spoke to him on Mount Sinai, and with our fathers, the one who received the living oracles to give to us, whom our fathers would not obey, verse 39, but rejected and in their hearts they turned back to Egypt. They wanted to go back to where God delivered them from, that's part of it. Verse 40, saying to Aaron, Make us gods to go before us.
As for this Moses who brought us out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him. And they made a calf in those days, offered sacrifice to the idol, and rejoiced in the works of their own hands. That's why those gods are raggedy because they're made by man.
This whole thing is so much to comment on. So they tell Aaron, of course, can you make a representation of God? We need a visible God. This whole faith thing is too much. We need to see, the Egyptians get to see what they're doing.
The other peoples, we want one also. And of course, Aaron with one of the greatest lies in the Bible, I just threw this stuff in the fire, poof, out came this golden calf. It's like, are you kidding me?
You're the assistant pastor? How could you even say such a thing? And Moses just, he ignores it, because it's so ridiculous. He could either kill him, or forgive him, and move forward.
And that's pretty much what happened. Anyway, an amazing part of the Bible, a true story. And so the resistance, again, gloss even says, it's your favorite reaction to God's grace, to resist it.
It's the favorite thing you love to do. Have you, Isaiah says, show kindness to a wicked person, and they'll still be wicked. They're not going to appreciate it. How many times have you, do you show kindness to somebody for them to bite you? I wish that God put some, you know, little clauses in. Okay, you should turn the other cheek. But, that would have been nice. But, he didn't do it.
How about that? Anyway, if they had stumbled so many times in sin, against God with idolatry, it's almost boring. The angels, if it wasn't such a high crime, could you imagine an angel, hey, did you see that they started to make idols over here too? And the other angel saying, yeah, tell me something new. Boring.
I think we can, it's not to the angels, because it's the value of it all. But that's how frequent it was in their history. And churches are much different, aren't much different. It's almost boring when someone says, you know what they're doing at their church now?
When someone tells you, gives you the excuses why they don't believe in the Bible, it's almost boring. Like, here we go. You know, billions and billions and billions of years, wait a minute. Here are you fretting around, we can't be the only ones in the universe. There has to be, you know, aliens and martians and such. Why can't we be the only ones? Who's to say this is not the beginning, so later on the other people can say we're not alone. Well, my point, so all those billions and billions of years ago, everybody was alone. You didn't have a problem with that.
Did I lose you on that? I'm just saying, there's some very smart people. Human beings do incredible things. But when it comes to God, they are the dumbest people alive when they have rejected him on this subject. And it's amazing, that's why God says the fool has said in his heart, there is no God.
You have to be a fool to do that. Okay, so you say there is a God. On what basis is your God God?
How does your God get to be God? Well, what we have today are all of these written accounts. And none of them have anything within them that would make you say, hey, this stuff is just as good as Shakespeare's.
This is good stuff. Accept the word of God. What makes us different? Well, the fact that reason is one, but the prophecies, you just can't beat the prophecies. God telling the future.
Nobody, the Quran has no prophetic, there's nothing in there that's prophetic. Certainly nothing that's come to pass, except the violence. Don't be intimidated by these things.
Oh no, don't say them. Pick on the people who are, pick on Confucius, he won't hurt you back. But don't mess with the Muslims.
We mess with lies, regardless of who they come from, regardless of the consequences. And that's what Stephen is doing. He's standing up to these boys.
You say, I don't have to take your stuff, I have the same Bible that you have. Well, you're missing the point. And I'm going to show you why you're missing the point.
And he's doing it. And he doesn't, he's not giving them, you know, a motivational speech, but you just hang in there, you'll figure it out one day. God's got a plan for you. He does have a plan for you, but so does Satan. And the sober mind sees these things.
Alright, almost done. Verse 42. Then God turned and gave them up to worship the host of heaven, as is written in the book of the prophets. Do you offer me slaughtered animals and sacrifices during forty years in the wilderness?
O house of Israel, did you offer me? Verse 43. You also took up the tabernacle of Moloch and the star of your god, Remphan. Images which you made to worship.
And I will carry you away beyond Babylon. So now he's quoting the prophet Amos. The Jews counted the twelve minor prophets as one book. And the reason why they put them all in one scroll, and we have them now, is the minor prophets.
Not that they were below age or anything like that. Minor in volume compared to Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel. That's why they're called the minor prophets. And the Jews said, listen, if we take Obadiah, for example, that one small little prophetic word, and we give him a single scroll, we're going to lose it. So let's take all the smaller prophets and let's put them into one scroll, and they became the minor prophets. The others, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, are known as the greater prophets or the latter prophets. And these distinctions are important to us if you want to start digging into how we got our Bible. The deities that Amos is mentioning here, and Stephen is repeating, Moloch and Remphan, included in their worship was child sacrifice.
Leviticus 18.21 specifies that about Moloch. So it was then, and it is to this very day, Satan comes up with nothing new because he's not creative. And because the things that he did in the past work right now just as good anyway. He doesn't have to think about, hmm, how am I going to take this guy down?
It's pretty easy for him if we're not on guard. So before a sermon, I've got to pray, I've got to study, I've got to chew on these things, I've got to know what I'm going to say, I've got to know all this work, not to count my own private walk with Christ. My flesh doesn't have to do any of that. My flesh does not have to pray to get stronger, does not have to study, it's born Superman.
It is so corrupted, it is activated instantly. And this is the fight that is worth fighting. And those who don't fight this fight are lost because they don't think it's worth it.
We think it's worth it because worthy is the Lamb. That's why we worship Him. Well, Paul, writing about Gentiles, and even as they did not retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind to do those things which are not fitting. And so that matches the Jews there going back to Molech and Rem-Fam. Well, so does everybody else who is against God. Verse 44, our fathers had the tabernacle of witness in the wilderness as he appointed instruction instructing Moses to make it according to the pattern that he had seen.
Pause there. I'm trying to read through the verses a little faster and it's not easy doing that because if I don't, then you're going to be here an hour and a half. So just look at it this way, he's looking out for us. Verse 45, which our fathers, having received in turn, also brought with Joshua into the land possessed by the Gentiles, whom God drove out before the face of our fathers until the days of David, who found favor before God and asked to find a dwelling for the God of Jacob. But Solomon built him a house. However, the Most High does not dwell in temples made with hands, as the prophet says, heaven is my throne and earth is my footstool. What house will you build for me, says Yahweh, or what is the place of my rest? Verse 50, has my hand not made these things? God is saying, look, I can make my own temple, I'm the creator.
What's going on? He's drawing out of his people what's happening and he's reminding them at the same time, this is not going to make you righteous, your heart's got to be right. The heart that is righteous will bring life to the building, not the other way around. This used to be a grocery store. My office in this area here is in the fruit and nut section. I'm not kidding you, I shop here. So, this is more the checkout area actually, but my office is the fruits and nuts. And so, whenever people come in, I realize that. Well, then don't come in. No kidding. Don't get uptight.
I love you. It's not as much now. No kidding. All right. Gee, who said that anyway? No.
Let's finish this so you can go home and tell me before you get home. Jesus, of course, is greater than the temple. Matthew 12, 6. Jesus said, one is with you that's greater than the temple.
God is not interested in stone buildings when the buildings of souls lie in ruins. Oh, anyway, that's it. Stephen has finished his sermon, well, almost.
Next, he's going to give them the application, and it is going to be scathing. You've been listening to Cross Reference Radio, the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia. As we mentioned at the beginning of today's broadcast, today's teaching is available free of charge at our website. Simply visit crossreferenceradio.com. That's crossreferenceradio.com. We'd also like to encourage you to subscribe to the Cross Reference Radio podcast. Subscribing ensures that you stay current with all the latest teachings from Pastor Rick. You can subscribe at crossreferenceradio.com, or simply search for Cross Reference Radio in your favorite podcast app. Tune in next time as Pastor Rick continues teaching through the book of Acts, right here on Cross Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-17 23:45:53 / 2023-03-17 23:55:46 / 10