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July 23, 2020 6:00 am
Pastor author and Bible teacher Alan Wright there something in our nature and the design that God has made us in his own image that we are just at our best when we give and were actually very happy as we can give something and even that were marred and broken my sin in this world you ever notice that most people unless they just have a totally totally senior conscience and most people like to give you directions if you ask. Notice that to another message of good news that will help you see your life for no hold. I'm excited for you to hear the teaching today. In the series titled God used to and you may just be surprised as presented it right know the church in North Carolina.
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It can be yours for your donation this month to Alan Reich Minister as you listen to today's message go deeper as we send you today's special offer. Contact us at pastor at.org or call 877-544-4860 that's 877-544-4860. More on that later in the program but now let's get started with today's teaching here is Alan Wright you write some good news the gospel is simple. It's not complicated is deep is not, can the gospel is free, not partially free, utterly free, so free that our inability to believe how free it is, is one of our greatest obstacles in growth in the gospel is powerful and God can use anyone at any time and any place to point people to this beautiful gospel of Jesus Christ were looking at a hidden jewel today and unnamed unheralded little girl on Mammon's servant girl. The story is in second Kings chapter 5 second Kings chapter 5 tells the story of a great military commander who is healed miraculously of his leprous condition and where our thought center today is where thinking about hidden jewels. These unheralded women in the word is that we focus our attention on how God uses this little servant girl and like other great Old Testament stories.
We really need to make our way through this whole chapter to be able to grasp the narrative and see what's going on here it is. I fascinating amazing story and can be seen on many many different levels.
Second Kings chapter 5 Mammon commander of the army of the king of Syria was a great man with his master, and in high favor because by him. The Lord had given victory to Syria.
He was a mighty man of valor, but he was a leper.
Let me pause here is all do as we really did make some comments along the way. So Naaman is probably number two in command in Syria. Ancient are the Aramaean people and he is described here as someone who is exceedingly powerful and probably is not unlike military commander, but sort of like prime minister in the land and everything is wonderful for him except he has leprosy and in the Old Testament. Leprosy is actually a word that is used to describe a variety of skin diseases. So this is not necessarily Hansen's disease. The highly infectious condition that is known as leprosy, but it could be one of a variety of serious skin diseases. Obviously, he is still able to function and is obviously not quarantine as was often the case with those with Hansen's disease verse two now the Syrians on one of their raids had carried off a little girl from the land of Israel, and she worked in the service of Naaman's wife.
She said to her mistress.
Would that my Lord were with the prophet who is in Samaria he would cure him of his leprosy. So Naaman went on and told his Lord told the king thus and so spoke the girl from the land of Israel and the king of Syria said go now and I will send a letter to the king of Israel, so he went, taking with him 10 talents of silver 6000 shekels of gold and 10 changes of clothing. By the way, scholars have spent much time trying to identify just how wealthy was Naaman and how much had he taken with him and is hard to wrap your mind around this exactly with any precision, but the bottom line is he was enormously wealthy and what he had taken with him. Some would say could be the equivalent of the wealth in all of Samaria and all of the northern kingdom of Israel, so he travels with all this wealth in verse six he brought the letter to the king of Israel, and this was one of the kings during the time of the divided monarchy.
They brought the letter to which read verse six when this letter reaches you know that I have sent to you. I am, my servant, and that you may cure him of his leprosy, and when the king of visual read the letter, he tore his clothes and set up my God kill and make alive that this man sends word to me to cure a man of his leprosy only consider it and see how he is seeking a quarrel with me.
So the king of Israel goes into great grief and angst because he assumes that the king of Syria. This very powerful nation has established a sort of political roots by which he wants to provoke a reason to attack Israel goes the king is going. I can't heal anybody. What is this all about verse eight.
But when Elisha, the man of God heard that the king of Israel had torn his clothes that sign of angst and grief he sent to the king's and why have you torn your clothes, let them come now to me that he may know that there is a prophet in Israel so Naaman came with his horses and chariots instead of the door of Elisha's house and Elisha sent a messenger to him, saying, go and wash in the Jordan seven times in your flesh will be restored and you shall be clean folk Elisha Dineen go out and speak to the center sent a messenger on Danziger wash in the Jordan verse 11 but Naaman was angry and went away saying the whole I thought he would surely come out to me and stand and call upon the name of the Lord is God and wave his hand over the place and cure the leper are not a Bono and Farquhar the rivers of Damascus better than all the waters of Israel cannot wash in them and be clean, so he turned and went away in a rage, but his servants came near and said to my father is a great word, the prophet is spoken to not do it as he actually said he wash and be clean so he went down and dipped himself seven times in the Jordan, according to the word of the man of God and his flesh was restored like a flash of a little child and he was clean, so Naaman was all angry about this.
I was beneath him, but his servants essentially were saying if you asked to do something fancy and great to pay a great sum you would've done it, but is giving you something very simple to do. Why not do the simpler thing and so he does and he is utterly healed. Verse 15 then he returned to the man of God. He and all his company and he came.
He stood before many said all I know that there is no God in all the earth, but in Israel and this is an astounding confession of faith of a converted man who was second in rulership in Syria, a pagan nation whose come to faith in the true living God. So he said second half of verse 15, except now I present from your servant. But he said, as the Lord lives, before whom I stand, Elisha said I'll receive none any urge them to take it Naaman begged him to take, but Elisha refused verse 17 Naaman said, if not please let there be given to your servant to mules load of earth. For now, from now on, your servant will not offer burnt offering or sacrifice to any God, but the Lord not real sure why want to take this dirt home with him is maybe kind of a keepsake you know any dissenter remember one thing is beautiful about this story is so real is that this a brand-new believer and he didn't know what all do. He just been so touched his eye, take some of this. This is holy ground will take some home with me and only know for sure, but what he saying is I want to remember this because I'm never going offer sacrifice to pagan deity again is only one God and he's one is healed. While challenge right will have more teaching moment.
Today's important series you've heard about it with you you the lead in mind and experience it in the hypothalamus with the left but lover of myself as a love story from beginning to end spiritual bride of Christ, the perfect bike. The Bible tells of his kind moms are the links to walk with Fremont Hispano member. The woman tasted the sweetness of God's love for your site for any woman who searched for 25 2014 only be found fully, Gary Chapman, Dr. the five love languages size incredible reality that God pursues us in life comes to an lover of my cell ancient biblical accounts explode in the heart except his proposal and showing his embrace. Traveling after the match made in heaven, lover of my soul. The gospel is shared when you get to write ministries. This broadcast is only possible because of listener financial support. When you get today. We will send you a special offer. We are happy to send this to you as our banks from our night ministries, seven 877-544-4860 877-544-4861 come to our website past Rowan.like today's teaching now continues here once again is verse 18. He continues this this Naaman the Syrian commandery continuously in this matter.
May the Lord partner servant when a master goes into the house of rim on who was sort of the Syrian version of the pagan deity ball one. My master goes into the house of Ramon to worship their leaning on my arm and I bow myself in the house of Ramon when I bow myself in the house of Ramon the Lord partner servant in this matter and he said Elijah said go in peace. Explain that later. But when Naaman had gone from a short distance get Heisey the servant of Elisha, the man of God said see my master has spared this Naaman the Syrian and not accepting from his hand. What is brought as the Lord lives, our run after him and get something from him. So get Heisey followed Naaman and when Naaman saw someone running after me got down from the chariot to meet him and said is all well they said all is well.
I master has sent me to say they have just now come to me from the hill there just now coming from the hill country of Ephraim to young men of the sons of the prophet. Please give them a talent of silver to change the clothing. It is making up a story and lying in order to get some financial gain, and Naaman said be pleased, except to talents and he urged them tied up to talents of silver and two bags were to change the clothing lay them on as two of his servants and they carry them before you Heisey and when he came to the here only took them from their hand and put them in the house. Any sentimental way and they departed when when Anna stood before the master and Elisha said to him, where you think the housing they said your servant went nowhere. But he said to him did not.
My heart go when the man turned from his chair to me in licensing the whole thing in the spirit is was it. It's time to accept money in garments, olive orchards and vineyards, sheep and oxen, male servants and female servants. Therefore, the leprosy of Naaman shall cling to you and to your descendents forever. So I went out from his presence. A leper like snow.
What a story, and it's a story of healing but is also a story. More importantly, even more dramatically unlikely conversion of somebody who would follow up in the last person they would ever come to the knowledge of the one true living God because that little girl how you get people to come to church. We live in a culture now where it just happened so fast.
For all of us churchgoers just happened so fast. It is almost took your breath away caused by supplier prize that especially here in this southern part United States use, most people my age orders, grew up, most people went to church.
Not so anymore.
A good majority of people don't go to church and, increasingly, for a lot of people in our culture, not even on their mind. Yet people go to church one time there was a seminarian who was in a preaching class and the professor was reviewing sermon titles. He was taught about the importance of having a good sermon title something catchy that makes people want to really listen to that sermon shows one student abroad in a sermon title. The professor said no this is not catchy. It's not doesn't sound importantly to try something else.
As they came back the next day brought another sermon title professor said no I don't think that works either. He said listen, think of it this way. Imagine you're the pastor of a church and you gotta sign out front where every week you put the title of your sermon and I imagine that a bus full of people pulls up and stopped in front your church and they read the sign of the title that sermon. Think about when something would make them want to jump off that bus and just run in your church. So the student came back the next day with his new sermon title. It was it was called. There's a bomb on her bus trick people to come to church as so how are people going to come to church. Well, the answer is actually very very Tom Rayner church growth expert and author is done a reset massive survey in which he found something quite startling really that 82% of people unchurched people who were surveyed said they were at least somewhat likely to say yes if a friend invited him to church, some labeling that really but if you think about it, that's kind of why we do almost anything. A friend tells us about it. I mean if a friend says no as a trusted friend. I say we had a great meal at such and such restaurant last week. You probably likely to try. If a good friend says hey I've heard this is a good movie you want to go see it with me most people probably say yes basically we shape so much of our lives around what what our friends invited us into and yet Tom Rayner said, and this is maybe even more startling that only about 2% of Christians ever really invite people to church so this is not rocket scientists stuff is it. If most people say I probably go if a friend or family member. Some I really like and trust invited me church I probably go give it a try. But very few people are doing that. How would I get people into church, not by tricking them, not by saying there's a bomb on her bus, but by inviting them at the center of this story today is this little girl and she is amazing in the way that she so simply points.
This great commander to the Lord and want to, walk through the story and its principles with an eye on this little girl to be reminded how simple and how free and how powerful the gospel of Jesus Christ really is the river Jordan was not magic.
It was just a river, but it symbolized the grace of God.
The river of the grace of God that we can point everybody towards so simple as a contrast in the story between Naaman and this little girl that is very stark. He's in he she is an Israelite. He is a Syrian, she's a little girl. So the text calls are a little girl.
The text calls Naaman great man. She's a captive he's a conqueror she's a servant he's a commander of armies. She's unknown and unnamed.
His name is famous throughout Syria.
She is poor and he is rich and one of the things is so shocking and beautiful about this story is that this little girl would want her Door must put it plainly, the one who had enslaved her unjustly, the one who had rated Israel and some scholars thing according to the way the Syrians would engage in battle, that there is a very reasonable chance that this little girl had seen her parents killed at the hands of the Syrians and she was captured and taken back to be a servant, and Naaman was responsible for all of that that she away from her homeland orphaned hurting mistreated and enslaved would want her captor to be blessed by her God.
That's how the world can be changed. What love is. This allowed for the enemy is startling. You think that she would be unquestionably in bitter and semi in that position could almost be justified in his and I'm glad it's got leprosy hope he dies from Michelin.
She was so small and she was so poor and she is so seemingly helpless and yet she had something of eternal value to give so fine to to give something valuable and precious away 02 discover the meaning of Jesus's words it's more blessed to give than it is to receive it really is there something in our nature and the design that God has made us in his own image that we are just at our best when we give and where actuator happiest when we can give something and even that were marred and broken by sin in this world you ever notice that most people unless they just have a totally totally seared conscience and horrible heart. But most people like to give you directions if you ask me for ever notice that there is little different now that we get the GPS and we don't stop and ask for directions very much not that I myself am needed directions but notice that I story will have to pick up with that on the next teaching. It is from the series God used who and the teaching Deborah Allen will be back in a moment with additional insight on this for your life and today's finals were glad you heard about it with your years you believed in mind while experiencing the left but not of myself as a love story from beginning to end spiritual bride of Christ, the perfect bike.
The Bible tells about moms and the links to walk with her anymore. It's gonna member the woman tasted the sweetness of God's love for your site for any woman who was searched for 25 2014 only handful Gary Chapman, Dr. the five love languages size incredible reality that God pursues us in life comes to lever of myself ancient biblical accounts explode in the extent this proposal and showing his embrace raveling after the match made in heaven, lever of myself gospel is shared when you get Allen right ministries. This broadcast is only possible because of listener financial support. When you get today.
We will send you a special offer. We are happy to send this to you as I thanks from Allen right ministries, seven 877-544-4860 877-544-4861 come to our website past Rowan.like I don't know if you want to give us a sneak preview or maybe just this question. Are we going to find direction in our next notified direction and it is a funny story time, I was lost and needed some directions, hilarious story, but I will need direction. Today's teaching really dang on the what a contrast between this mighty powerful general Naaman new in all his pride and bluster gets upset that the simple command of property given him and how God uses this unnamed young servant girl that God puts on display is grace. You can't pay for healing. You can't buy salvation. Naaman can't earn it by being an important figure. The secret comes from a little girl and it's all about about great settings or word of hope and worth healing from today's good news message is a listener supported production Allen right ministries