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Don’t Waste Your Crisis - Part 2 of 2

Baptist Bible Hour / Lasserre Bradley, Jr.
The Truth Network Radio
August 28, 2022 12:00 am

Don’t Waste Your Crisis - Part 2 of 2

Baptist Bible Hour / Lasserre Bradley, Jr.

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August 28, 2022 12:00 am

“Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake” (Psalm 115:1).

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The Baptist Bible Hour now comes to you under the direction of Elder LeSaire Bradley, Jr. O for a thousand tongues to sing, my great Redeemer's praise! Thou the wisdom of my God and King, the triumphs of his grace!

This is LeSaire Bradley, Jr. inviting you to stay tuned for another message of God's sovereign grace. He cleaneth me, O blessed of all words, with deadly comfort from, What e'er I knew, where e'er I've been, still his God sendeth me. He cleaneth me, he cleaneth me, by his own hand he cleaneth me. His faithful Father I would be, for by his hand he cleaneth me.

Sometimes it seems I'll be there's blue, sometimes where eternal power's blue. My water's still for trouble's sake, still his his hand hath cleaneth me. He cleaneth me, he cleaneth me, by his own hand he cleaneth me. His faithful Father I would be, for by his hand he cleaneth me. And when my past all-earth is done, when by thy grace the victory's won, In best of way I will not flee, since God, through Jordan, cleaneth me. He cleaneth me, he cleaneth me, by his own hand he cleaneth me.

His faithful Father I would be, for by his hand he cleaneth me. We're thankful for the opportunity to come your way at this same time each week, and we do depend on our listeners for support. We ask an interest in your prayers that the needs will be supplied. If you can help us, you can write us at Baptist Bible Hour, Box 17037, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. Or you can make a donation at our website at BaptistBibleHour.org.

Now today we bring you the second part of the message by our guest speaker, Elder Mike Stewart, pastor of Heritage Primitive Baptist Church in Huntsville, Alabama. Now what are we talking about? You're not wasting your crisis. Your crisis is not being wasted when you're enduring. And what's at the end of that endurance? Let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. Now you remember last week we defined that word in Matthew chapter 5, Be ye perfect as your Father in heaven is perfect, as lacking nothing to completion. So endurance gets us to the place of maturity, to the place where we experience more, that we lack nothing to completion, where we're whole in all our parts, is the word entire, and we lack nothing. And what would that experience be?

It would be the experience we sing about often, isn't it? All I have is Christ, and all I need is Christ. When you have Christ, when you have the whole Christ, and He's yours, beloved, you have all your need, see?

You have everything you could ever want, and the aim of God in your testing is not to destroy you. He's not punishing you. He's done that in Christ, has He not? He is never going to punish those that are in Christ Jesus.

He'll discipline, He'll train as a Father, but punishment is gone forever, because Christ endured the punishment on our behalf. And so when you're in a crisis, remember James' word. Lead it before the mind.

It's not joy now. Things are being ripped out of your hands that are precious, but have joy set before you. And He endured the cross, despising the pain. And where is Jesus now?

He sat down on the right hand of the Father on high. Let us remember to be patient, to endure, because that's the aim of God in your crisis. Don't waste your crisis.

Number four. Your crisis is not being wasted when your crisis causes you to groan a little more. To groan. Now sometimes I groan, but it's more like moaning. It's not the good kind of the Bible. I should stop that.

I'm just moaning because I don't like what's happening. But groaning, Paul would say in 2 Corinthians chapter 5. I turn there. Verse 1, For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, and house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven.

Now why is Paul groaning? Now sometimes those chapter breaks can throw us off. There's really no chapter break in the original, and there's no nice verses for us to say 1, 2, 3. I like that.

It's very helpful for preaching and reading and discussing. But Paul comes right out of verse 17 of chapter 4. Our light affliction, and says what? We're groaning.

You see the connection? He's groaning because he's in crisis. He's groaning because he's in affliction. He's groaning. What is this groaning in particular?

It's an inarticulate sound. But contextually, it's earnestly desiring something, you see. It's not just to groan over the pain.

It includes that. He's groaning because he earnestly wants to be resurrected. He wants his resurrected body.

He wants to be clothed upon. To be absent from the body is to be present from the Lord. But even better, that mortality would be swallowed up of life. Gloriously, when we depart from this life, we go right into the presence of the glory of Christ, and we see Him and we're with Him. But better, Paul says, better than that, we walk by faith here.

That's good. Better than that, we're absent from the body, present with the Lord. Better than that is when the body is raised to immortality in death, and mortality is swallowed up of eternal life. In this, Paul groans. He has a tabernacle, a tent. His earthly tent was dissolving. That's what he was groaning in, the body.

He was experiencing the decay and the dying and the rotting kind of experience of the body as it moves toward the grave. Paul would speak of this in Romans chapter 8. He would say that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together now, until now.

And not only today, but we ourselves also have the firstfruits of the Spirit. We ourselves groan. What are we groaning about? Waiting, longing, looking for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our bodies. See, in both contexts, the groaning caused by suffering in crises, for I reckon the suffering this present time is not worthy to be compared to the glory that shall be revealed. Romans 8, in the same context of groaning. And light affliction, 2 Corinthians 4, in the context of groaning. Is that all that creation has been subjected to in futility and vanity. God did that when Adam and Eve sinned to remind us how bad sin really is. This beautiful creation does not work as it should. Everything goes wrong.

Why? God subjected the same in hope, so that we would hope not in creation, but in God Himself. And as we groan more with every crisis we encounter, the change and the decay and the death that all around we see.

What should that do for us in and through the crisis? Oh Lord, come quickly. Do you long for heaven more?

Now if you're young and you don't, you've got time, their crisis will come. But the aim of God in it is to remind us how bad sin is, and to remind us in heaven our choicest treasure lies. We don't think that way often, do we? But the crisis has a way. The decay and corruption and dissolving of the body has a way to cause a groaning in the crisis that causes us to earnestly desire it. We want it.

That should not be strange. Is not the end for which God saves the resurrection? Is that not why we die?

Secondarily, primarily because of sin? That God has transformed death as a portal and entrance into everlasting life? Whereby our bodies were raised anew and joined with our souls, where we're with the Lord forever? And as the psalmist wrote, as we read earlier, there is joy in thy presence and pleasure forevermore. Is that not the aim of salvation?

Christ has removed the fear of death, which we were all our lifetime subject to slavery. And so, your crises, I'll say plural, over a lifetime, are not wasted when you are groaning a little more. Groaning for heaven.

Groaning for glory. Your crisis is not being wasted, number five, when your crisis is driving you to God's Word. Now here's the question, and then I'll give a caveat. During COVID-19, do you spend more time with health statistics, news, stories, information, than you did in God's Word?

Key word is more. It was imperative that we know something about what was going on, was it not? We had to make decisions. We had to navigate this. So to have some information was imperative. But did you spend more time in the crisis with that information than the eternal Word of God?

Then maybe our crisis was wasted. The crisis is aiming to drive you to the Word of God. Psalm 119 verse 67. Before I was afflicted, I went astray, but now have I kept thy word. The word to go astray is not conveying the idea of a deliberate, willful, I'm turning from God.

It means to err ignorantly. Isn't that how we often stray? Didn't think about it, wasn't planning to, but through carelessness we begin to stray. And then what happened to David? Affliction came. The crisis came to David. And what happened? He drove him back to the Word of God.

He kept the Word of God. Does a crisis have that impact on your life? Do you need counsel from the Word of God? Or do you base it on your impulse, your ideas, what you want to happen, what you want people to say, what you want to be done? Do you base it on scientists and epidemiologists and biologists and all those people?

As to what you're going to decide to do? Or is it thus saith the Word of God? The Word of God. No matter what anybody says, when he contradicts this Word. That was David's experience in affliction.

Psalm 119 verse 71. It was good for me that I had been afflicted. Let me change that statement and see if you agree. It was good for me that I experienced a pandemic. Can you say that?

It's very tough, isn't it? It was good for me that I got COVID-19. That depends. There's a condition that would make that statement true for you, right?

People would think you're crazy if you said that. David just used a general word, affliction, trouble, difficulty. It was good for me that I had been afflicted. Why, David? I have learned your statutes.

That's the only thing that makes it good and not wasted. Did you learn something through your pandemic or through your crisis, whether it's personal, relational, marital, family, church? Did that affliction drive you in your need to God's Word? Not only for answers, but also to see where maybe you have strayed. So often in crises, we're often looking for someone else to pin the blame on. Whether it's large scale, personal, or relational. We want to say, well, you've gone astray.

That's why this is happening to us. David looked within himself. Search me, O God, he would pray. Examine me. Not because he thought there was no sin in him, but he wanted to know.

He wanted to draw close. And so David said it was good for me. In the same context, Psalm 119, verse 105.

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path. Was it? Is it?

Will it be in your crisis? It seems like you can't see anything. It's just dark, but your feet need a place to walk. And the only thing that will illuminate the path is not the philosophers or the scientists or anybody else.

It's the Word of God. What happens if the light goes out? You move back away from the light of God's Word. What happens to your feet? They begin to wander.

They begin to walk. That's what happens to us, beloved, and a crisis can be just that pivotal point that turns us from the Lord rather than brings us, drives us to the Word. It was good that I was afflicted that I might learn thy statutes. David said, Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now have I kept thy word.

And thy word is a lamp and a light. May that be so for you and your crisis will not be wasted. I did not say you'll have no sin in your crisis. We've pointed out that that's part of the reason of the crisis to reveal. But it won't be wasted. Number six, You know your crisis is not being wasted when your crisis is bringing about more prayer.

More prayer. Jeremiah 29, God says after 70 years in Babylon are accomplished, then I will visit the people of Israel. The 70 year time in Babylon was a crisis. Nobody in Israel wanted the temple to be destroyed. Nobody wanted the gates to be burned down. And nobody wanted the whole city to be ransacked. And to take a 70 year vacation, which was not a vacation, to a foreign land where they were ridiculed and mocked as they wept over Jerusalem, the beloved city.

Nobody wanted that. This is a crisis. And then God reveals the end of the crisis. I know the thoughts that I think towards you. Thoughts of peace and not of evil to give you an expected end. To give you a hope.

And what was that? Then after those 70 years, that massive crisis for Israel, you will call upon me and you will pray to me. Now of all the things you might have thought of that would be the expected end that God would give after a 70 year jaunt in a foreign land, would you have guessed prayer? Because they weren't calling on the name of the Lord. They didn't need God. And God put them in a crisis to reveal their need for Him. And graciously answer their prayers. Zechariah 13, I will bring the third part through the fire and they shall be tried as silver is tried and refined as gold is refined and they will call upon me.

What's the aim of the refiner's fire? The crisis? They're going to pray. Whatever God was doing through the pandemic, whatever God is doing through your crisis right now, to assure you 100%, part of it is prayer. Has God wasted His time in your life?

Has He wasted a good crisis in your life? Or are you calling upon the name of the Lord more? I didn't say more eloquently, more theologically, just more. Look at Isaiah 30 verse 18. And therefore, will the Lord wait that He may be gracious unto you, and therefore will He be exalted, that He may have mercy upon you, for the Lord is a God of judgment. Blessed are all they that wait for Him.

That's Isaiah 30 verse 18. God is waiting for something. He's waiting so that He can be gracious, and He's waiting so that He can exalt His mercy. What's He waiting for? What would you say God is waiting for? He's going to tell us.

Verse 19, For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem. Thou shalt weep no more. He will be very gracious unto thee at the voice of thy cry. When He shall hear it, He will answer you. He's waiting for prayer. Why is He waiting?

So that He can be gracious in such a way that His grace and mercy are exalted, or to the praise of the glory of His grace. Since God, in everything He does, is aiming at His own glory, He waits to be gracious so that His grace and mercy is exalted. He's waiting for your cry.

But notice, He's not just waiting passively. Verse 20, And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction... Now what does that tell us? Here's how God waits. He waits by bringing bread and water, adversity and affliction, and crisis into your life. So that you will cry, He will answer, and God will be exalted, and you will be helped in a way that will bring you peace and contentment and joy. Now, I'm sorry, that's just amazing.

Is it not? When the Lord builds up Zion, He shall appear in His glory. He shall regard the prayer of the destitute.

And so He brings the affliction to bring you to destitution and to poverty so that His glory is exalted when He meets your need through prayer. Don't waste your crisis. Start praying. Just call out, Lord, I need you. Jonah couldn't wax that eloquent, could he, in the whale's belly?

That's a crisis. Save me, Lord! God heard him. What's he saying? I need you, Lord! I thought I didn't, but I do!

Help me! Can you say that? That's what your crisis is for. Oh, beloved, don't waste your crisis because the crisis is for your good.

It's for your benefit. And God's love is coming to you in the form of a crisis. It's not His hatred. It's not His turning His back.

He loves you. And He's coming in a crisis. And His aim is prayer.

That's going to be good for you. And then finally, number seven, you know you're not wasting your crisis when your crisis is yielding more holiness. More holiness. We sing more holiness to you. More striving with sin.

Right? That's what a crisis can do. More striving because, boy, Lord, I see things I just didn't know about myself. And the crisis revealed it. Peter would say in 1 Peter 1, 13, Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober and hope to the end at the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. The people are in a crisis of major proportions. They're scattered. They're hurting. They're being persecuted.

They're being slandered. Peter says this is a time for sober thinking. How are you going to think soberly? Get to the Word of God.

Be sober and then start hoping. Or, James would say it this way, start counting it all joy. Would he not? As obedient children, beloved, crisis is a time for obedience, not disobedience. Peter doesn't lower the bar and say, I know you're hurting.

I know it's painful. And so what God's going to do, He's just going to lower that bar for a minute. He knows you don't want to do anything. He knows you don't care about anything right now, so just forget obedience, you know. Don't make your bed. Don't clean up your room.

Don't put the dishes in the dishwasher. The kind of thing spiritually I'm comparing. Just forget it. When you decide you want to come back and obey, you just come on back. As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to your former lust and your ignorance. In other words, when you are disobedient, all you did was act on impulse and lust.

Don't act that way. That's not holy. That's the way I lived my whole life before I was converted. I just acted on my own desires and I was totally disobedient.

So obedient children don't get shaped that way anymore. Rather, be holy. Which means this, now that you know Jesus in a way that you never have, let your soul be shaped by the Word of God and new desires of the Holy Spirit. Which to know God in the Bible is synonymous with what?

Love Him. And then you'll be holy or you'll what? You'll love others.

See that you love one another with a pure heart fervently. That is holiness in a nutshell. It's not outward forms.

It's not first external acts. It's a heart being shaped by the love of God that then works itself out in love toward others. And in that moment of crisis, when everybody knows this person shouldn't be loving, this person shouldn't be doing that, this person shouldn't be saying that, you do it and it draws attention to the source of that love which is not you. It puts on display the excellencies, 1 Peter 2, of Him that called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. And that's God's concern. He gets glory.

People say, oh, what an awesome God! And you get joy. You get strength.

You get help. You get everything you need in Christ Jesus. The aim of a crisis is more holiness.

Don't let your crisis go to waste. More holiness, give me More strivings within More patience in suffering More sorrow for sin Our guest speaker today has been Elder Mike Stewart, pastor of Heritage Primitive Baptist Church in Huntsville, Alabama. We'd appreciate it if you'd take time to write and let us know that you've listened and if you can, help us with the support of the program. Till next week at this same time, may the Lord richly bless you all. More gratitude, give me More trust in the Lord More pride in His glory More hope in His Word More tears for His sorrows More patience in suffering The Baptist Bible Hour has come to you under the direction of Elder LeSaire Bradley, Jr. Address all mail to the Baptist Bible Hour, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. That's the Baptist Bible Hour, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. More purity, give me More strength to overcome More freedom from earth's gates More longings for home More fit for the kingdom More useful I be More blessed and holy More savior like thee
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-11-28 01:06:10 / 2022-11-28 01:16:07 / 10

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