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Prone To Wander - Part 1 of 2

Baptist Bible Hour / Lasserre Bradley, Jr.
The Truth Network Radio
March 5, 2023 12:00 am

Prone To Wander - Part 1 of 2

Baptist Bible Hour / Lasserre Bradley, Jr.

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March 5, 2023 12:00 am

“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord” (Colossians 3:16).

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O for a thousand tongues to sing, my great Redeemer's praise, Thou the risen of my God and King, Thou triumphs of his grace. This is LeSaire Bradley, Jr., inviting you to stay tuned for another message of God's sovereign grace. O for a breeze of heavenly love to laugh my soul away, To that celestial world above where pleasures ne'er decay, The eternal spirit deign to be, My pilot here belong, To steer through life's impetuous sea, Where stormy winds do blow. I need the influence of thy grace to speak me on my way, Lest I should loiter in my grace, or turn my feet astray, Are not thy mercy sovereign still, And thou a faithful God? Will thou not grant me warmer zeal To run the heavenly roam?

From rocks of pride on either hand, From quick sands of despair, O guide me, safe for Canaan's land, Through ev'ry gate and stair, Anchor me in that port above, On that celestial shore, Where dashing billows never move, Where tidbits never roar. I want to thank each of you who wrote us during our anniversary month. We appreciate your response, we appreciate your support, and we ask for a continued interest in your prayers. We're now in a new month, and so obligations continue to go on. And if we keep this broadcast on the air, we need to hear from our listeners on a consistent basis.

So if you haven't written to us, or even if you have and can write again, helping us at this time, we'll certainly appreciate it. That's Baptist Bible Hour, Box 17037, Cincinnati, Ohio 45217. I also encourage you to visit our website at We're told in the Scriptures to sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, making melody in our heart unto the Lord. We have some beautiful hymns in our book, and what a joy it is to be able to sing praises to our God. Many of these hymns not only describe the greatness and glory of God, the freeness of the salvation that is given us by grace, but also describe something of the Christian experience, struggles and cares that are sometimes pressing us down, and yet the hope and relief that we find in the Lord. And ultimately we sing about our hope of heaven, and someday to be with the Lord.

One of the hymns that I think we've all enjoyed through the years is number 25 in our hymn book. Come, Thy fount of every blessing, tune my heart to sing Thy grace. Streams of mercy never ceasing, call for songs of loudest praise.

Teach me some melodious sonnet sung by flaming tongues above. Praise the mount I'm fixed upon it, mount of Thy redeeming love. Here I raise mine Ebeneezer, hither by Thy help I'm come, and I hope by Thy good pleasure safely to arrive at home.

Jesus sought me when a stranger, wandering from the fold of God, He to rescue me from danger interposed His precious blood. O to grace how great a debtor, daily I am constrained to be. Let Thy goodness like a fetter bind my wandering heart to Thee, prone to wander, Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love. Here's my heart, O take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above. Originally there was a fourth verse that was soon left out of most of the hymnals, but it certainly is a good message. O that day when freed from sinning, I shall see Thy lovely face, clothe then in blood-washed linen how I'll sing Thy sovereign grace. Come, my Lord, no longer tarry, take my ransomed soul away. Send Thine angels now to carry me to realms of endless day. The hymn was written by Robert Robinson in 1758.

He was 23 years of age at the time. Prone to wander, Lord I feel it. So many of the expressions in this hymn can be directly connected with a portion of scripture. And when the hymn writer describes what all of us have recognized as a part of our struggle, we're made to think about Hebrews chapter 3 verse 12 and 13. Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God, but exhort one another daily while it is called today, lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

First we think about an acknowledgment of need. There is evidence of that inclination to wander when the cares of this world crowd out our interest in spiritual things. In the parable spoken by Jesus in Matthew chapter 13, there's a description of what happens in that regard. And certainly this can be applied to those who come under the sound of the gospel and ultimately fail to receive it in their hearts and to be a true possessor of eternal life. That also is true to some degree in the lives of God's people periodically when they struggle with the weaknesses of this flesh. Matthew 13 verse 22, He also that receives seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word and the care of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choked the word and he becometh unfruitful.

What is it that chokes the word? A person comes under the sound of the preaching of the gospel, hears the word of God proclaimed and maybe at that moment is somewhat affected by it. But what happens? The care of the world, the deceitfulness of riches begins to take its toll. 2 Timothy chapter 4 verse 10, the apostle says, Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world. Generally that wandering doesn't happen abruptly. It's over a period of time, little by little, the interest shifts. At one point in your life, you may have been very intense in your desire to grow in grace into the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. You may have been spending more time reading His word than you are today. But little by little, the things of the world began to creep in.

It doesn't seem so dramatic at first. In fact, many of the things that occupy your attention are valid. Say I've got to make a living, I've got to provide a place for my family to live, a lot of work to be done if I'm maintaining a house or even if I'm living in an apartment. There's things that have to be done in caring for it. Children come along and you feel like I want them to have a broad scope of activity.

Certainly there's a place for them to be involved in a number of things for them to develop and mature. But after a while, these things begin to grow and your interest in them increases. And you're focusing so much time on your job and on meticulously maintaining your home and on being involved in a variety of activities with your children and being sure that you have enough entertainment and social activity and various other things, all of which in and of themselves seem harmless enough, but after a while it takes over. And your interest in other things is controlling your life, prone to wander.

Lord, I feel it. You know that you're prone to wander when you give in to sinful desires. Now, the flesh is always there in this old Adam nature. We'll have to contend with it until we are ultimately with the Lord and have been glorified and have a new body and are in His presence. But in the meantime, the flesh is weak.

The struggles are many. You can read God's Word, you can hear it preached, you can sing hymns of praise, all of which have a positive impact. And you say, by the grace of God, I don't want to think some of the thoughts that I have thought. I don't want to participate in some of the things that I have allowed to enter my life.

I don't want to go in a certain direction, but the flesh doesn't go away. And you're made to say from time to time with the beloved apostle, old wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death. 1 Peter 2 and verse 11. Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, having your conversation honest among the Gentiles, that whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation. Abstain from fleshly lust. Now the thought generally goes in that connection to something that is sensual, but it can be a variety of things. The desires of the flesh, that's what lusts are. These sensual, sinful, selfish, greedy desires. A desire to please ourselves and gratify our flesh and do what we want to do with really no thought about what's going to please God. These lusts, these desires war against the soul. Satan is the great deceiver and he can try to talk you into the idea and being that the flesh is weak, it doesn't take a lot of persuasion sometimes to convince you that you can maintain some of these thoughts and attitudes and interests and pursue them periodically and still have a close walk with God. He said, these fleshly lusts, these desires, when you give in to them, they war against the soul.

James chapter 4 verse 1 speaks to the subject as well. From whence come wars and fightings among you? How is it that there often is warfare right within a marriage? How is it that there is often serious conflict within families?

How is it that there are ongoing differences among Christians? These wars, these conflicts, where do they come from? Come they not hence even of your lusts that war in your members. Your own selfish interests, your own personal desires. I want what I want or I'm going to prove I'm right no matter what and war, conflict, strife is the result. Ye lust and have not, ye kill and desire to have and cannot obtain, ye fight and war, yet ye have not because ye ask not.

Ye ask and receive not because ye ask amiss that ye may consume it upon your lust. Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God. Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

Now you see, this doesn't allow any room for compromise. This doesn't say as long as you're not too worldly, everything's alright. As long as I don't go so far down the path that I have done something that is blatantly offensive to God and a direct violation of one of His commandments, everything's alright. No, He says if you're sidling up to the world, you're thinking like the world, your interest coincides with that which those in the world have. You're the friend of the world, at that point you're the enemy of God. Where do you want to stand?

You want to be considered among His friends or His enemies? Do you think that the Scripture sayeth in vain, the spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy? The envious spirit. I want what somebody else has.

I'm upset because I feel like they've got more and really I'm entitled to it and why should they have it? Jealousy, envy, where does it come from? It comes from this lust, this evil desire that's in your flesh. When you meditate on these things, you give considerable thought to some of the things that stir in you with that envious spirit, that resentful spirit. That spirit of always desiring more, you can never find peace and contentment. That perpetual pursuit of finding some way that this old human nature is going to be gratified, you're prone to wander.

The more you give in to those thoughts and pursue those interests, the farther you're going to wander away from the God that you profess to love. If you hold on to anger, an unforgiving spirit, say, what's that got to do with wandering? Well, for one thing, Jesus has taught us in the model of prayer that if we fail to forgive those that have trespassed against us, we cannot expect our Heavenly Father to forgive us our trespasses.

So if your prayer life is disrupted, you're not going to have a strong day-to-day communion and fellowship with Jesus Christ. When there's bitterness and resentment, a desire for revenge, maybe you've restrained yourself. You've never really done anybody harm, you've never really retaliated, but down deep inside, you really want to take revenge. God's displeased with your attitude, with your heart. From the heart, the evil things originate, prone to wander. Lord, I feel it, prone to leave the God I love. You know that you're prone to wander when you begin to compromise your convictions for acceptance by others or to secure financial gain for the benefit of a better job or making more money, you're willing to compromise your convictions.

Not totally comfortable with this, I've got a little question about it, but you know, man has to do what he has to do, so I'll just make a little compromise here. Or if you're constantly looking around to see what other people say, what other people think. Now, there is a place to have some concern of that area because the text we've looked at in the third chapter of the book of Hebrew says that we're to be admonishing one another lest we be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. So if a brother in Christ comes to you and humbly confronts you and tries to admonish you, you ought to be concerned about what he is thinking. But, if you're constantly looking around to try to make everybody like you, you never want to offend anybody because you don't want to take a position that's not popular today, so you're constantly looking to men, then you're going to be wandering.

The book of Isaiah tells us in chapter 2 and the 22nd verse, See, chief, a man whose breath is in his nostrils. Why is it you're afraid of a man? Why is it you're afraid of what some human being is going to think when, in most cases, the thinking that is prevalent in the world and often even among extended family members is incorrect anyway? It's not biblically sound, it's not thinking that it's going to encourage you to do that which is pleasing in God's sight, so why should you be concerned about somebody else's opinion? The real issue is, do your ways please the Lord? You know, if nobody else on this earth liked you, liked what you do or what you say, if God approves of it and would say to you at the end of the race, well done, now good and faithful servant, wouldn't that be alright?

Certainly rather have His approval than all of the praise that men might be able to give us. You know that you're prone to wander when you become intrigued with false teaching. Now, obviously when a person becomes intrigued with something that's false, they're not identifying it as false. They don't say, here's some false teaching and I think I'll pursue this. No, it's false teaching alright, but it's interesting. Generally, if somebody comes down the road with some new idea and concept that's totally contrary to what the Bible teaches, they present it in a very palatable format. It seems reasonable, it seems logical, it seems to appeal to you, it seems to satisfy you.

I remember a number of years ago, there was a radio ministry which the whole thrust was to bring people back under law service. And I talked to some people who were intrigued with this. I tried to show them the contrast between law and grace. And they would say on one hand, oh we still believe in grace, but we're not going to really go this, but we're learning some things there.

And they kept listening to it and listening to it and they were finally swallowed up by it. Totally turning away from the teachings of the grace of God. When you become so intrigued and enamored with some teaching that has come down the way that just makes you feel good about yourself. I like this a little bit better because a lot of the things that I've heard preached up to this point have been convicting and I didn't feel real good about it and this idea makes me feel good.

And just pretty well mark it down, that in itself reveals there's something wrong with it. If you're just feeling good about yourself in your own natural state, God never intended that anyway. Now, I don't mean that you're to go around constantly in a state of misery because if you see yourself positioned in Christ and know that He's your righteousness and He's your sanctification, He's your wisdom, you've got reason to rejoice.

But I'm talking about this thing that appeals to the human nature, appeals to your self-esteem. There are many today, even among evangelicals, who are adopting more and more this concept of inclusivism. That is, that it really doesn't matter after all what God you worship or which route you take, the destination is all the same.

That everybody who's sincere in their religion is all included. Doesn't that sound good? Doesn't that sound like you've got a good attitude, you're not narrow-minded, you're not bigoted? I mean, that sounds great and you find the thing, you know, I really want to be like that.

I want to be like some other people that I see around me, that they've just got a good, generous attitude, they're never critical of anything or anybody. It's just, you know, if it works for you, that's probably the best thing for you. That's good. Well, you can reason with that and become perfectly satisfied with it. But when you come back to the Scripture and here's Jesus Himself saying, I am the way, the truth, and the life, that contradicts all that. He says there are not many ways, there's just one and He's it. Do you understand why they hated Him? Do you understand why they cried, crucify Him, crucify Him and nailed Him to the cross? He said, I and my Father are one. He wasn't just another rabbi teaching a lesson. Oh, He taught many lessons all right, but He declared He was more than a man, He was God in the flesh.

He was the only Savior of fallen sinners. And when we proclaim that today, there are people that hate the message, hate it and would destroy it had they the ability to do it. Wipe it off the face of the earth. See, if you're intrigued with one of these ideas that's being advanced, something that's popular today, you may be on the verge of wandering, prone to wander. Lord, I feel it.

Some are flaming, tons of gold. Praise the mount, oh, fix me on it. Mount of God's unchanging law. It's sad when a person becomes intrigued with some new idea that seems so exciting, but in reality it is contradictory to the teaching of God's Word. If you find yourself inclined to follow some theory, some teaching, some concept that is altogether new, you certainly need to stop and examine the source of it. Is this somebody's speculation?

Is this somebody's personal idea? Is this what the Word of God teaches? Yes, in the weakness of the flesh we are prone to wander, but let us hold fast to the truth of God that we may follow and serve our Savior, Jesus Christ. I hope you will write to us, and until next week at the same time, may the Lord richly bless you all. Lord, like a fetter, bind my wandering heart to Thee, prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, prone to Thee, God, God, I love. 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. O to grace, how great a debtor Daily I'm constrained to be Let Thy grace, Lord, like a fetter, bind my wandering heart to Thee, prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, prone to Thee, God, God, I love. Here's my heart, Lord, take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-05 02:10:10 / 2023-03-05 02:18:58 / 9

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