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September 24, 2017 6:00 am
Radium is your focus is making Christ is providing come check us out at 3045 Oxford Rd. visit us online.org join us for this week's message by Pastor Albert on shop years ago there was a cartoon of an old farmer and his wife writing down the truck right on the road in the pickup truck in the first frame showed the old farmer sitting behind the wheel with his arm out the window and the wife was way on the other side on the passenger side looking out the window and the second frame showed a young couple passing them and they were sitting so close to each other that you can tell which one was driving some of you have seen those in the per frame. The old woman says to her husband, Paul. You remember when we use to write like that. What happened to us. The last frame shows the old man old farmer replying mall.
I have moved. I'm still where I am using when it comes to our relationship with God.
If you question what has happened, why am I not where I used to be with God. Why is it that I feel cold towards God.
God hasn't moved. He is still where he was and that is the theme of our first messages is called love in our love becomes cold towards God is not on God's part. It's on us were the ones who need to examine our hearts and move towards him as if you have your Bibles with you turn to the book of Malachi, starting in verse one of chapter 1. Let's all stand for the reading of God's word, the burden of the word of the Lord to Israel by Malachi. I have loved you, says the Lord. Yet you say in what way have you loved us was not Jacob. Esau's brother, says the Lord, your Jacob I have loved and Esau I have hated my go to verse 13. You also say oh what a weariness and you sneer at it, says the Lord of hosts, and you bring the stolen, the lame and the sick. Does she bring an offering, should I accept this from your hand, says the Lord.
Look back again to the beginning of verse 13 oh what a weariness. Some translations have it all. What a burden it has the idea of exhaustion were exhausted with God were tired of God does not describe you today has the Christian life become a burden for you and I know there are many here this morning. It was absolutely not.
I'm excited but there are many here including myself, has the have the things of God become a drag for you that they've gone from I get to do this to us to go to church I got serve, I gotta give a got a got. If you find yourself in the latter category. What is become a burden for you. What you really need is revival and revival is not announcing it in the newspaper and putting up a banner outside the says revival week revival happens here it happens today as we hear the word of God to the people through Malachi let that revival began. And by the way, before you can say God would you soften my heart if your heart is dead.
As someone said you what you need is not revival what you need is revival. You need to be rude but you know get saved the dead heartbeats to come to life.
The book of Malachi is the last book in the Old Testament, it belongs to the collection known as the 12 profits or sometimes the minor prophets there called minor not because they're less important but because compared to the bigger profits of the bigger writings like Isaiah and Jeremiah and Ezekiel and Daniel. They were much less in writing. But even though Malachi is small in size. It has a big message and I believe it has a big message for Clearview this morning for me this morning to really understand what that message is we have to understand the context in which the book of Malachi was written from my study of the book, the theology of the book the language of the book of Malachi, I believe that was written sometime toward the end of Nehemiah's ministry.
There's a book in the Old Testament, you know, the book of Nehemiah. I believe Malachi was written towards the end of chapters of the book of Nehemiah not for those of you who may not be familiar with what I just said to you, give you a quick timeline in 538 BC, God raised Cyrus the king of Persia to free the Jewish people life. You remember Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had taken them into exile, but in 538 just the way God had promised. He freed the people to Cyrus and Cyrus said go home go back to your home and rebuild your lives and rebuild the temple and worship your God, and so they came back not all of them, some returned and by 515 BC. Keep in mind the time is in the sending orders on the other side of the birth of Christ in 515 BC which was 23 years after Cyrus set them free. They rebuild the Jerusalem Temple. God sent prophets like Haggai and Zechariah who came in motivated the people to rebuild the temple didn't want to do it, but they held them to preach to them. That's why we have the book of Haggai the book of Zechariah in the Old Testament in 458 BC which is about 60 years. From that point, God sent Ezra the scribe you number the book. It is right in the Old Testament and he came in he preached to the people and he read the book of the law and if you remember the people stood and they worship God in their wet when they heard the words of God and then 10 years later, which is 445 BC, God sent another man who was not a prophet. He was not a priest or Levite. He was an ordinary man, a high profile guy in Persia by the name of Nehemiah and Nehemiah came in he help them rebuild the walls around the city of Jerusalem and only 52 days. It was a miracle and he also let the people in renewal spiritual renewal moral renewal social renewal how you treat your home and your wife and your kids in all these things he help them and then listen. He was not a prophet. He was not a priest is like ours of them. The best I could. I'm headed back to work and he went back to Persia and when he did things began to go downhill again. This is the context in which the book of Malachi was written.
This is the context in which God said Malachi. The prophet to his people using it was God who had brought those people back into the land. It was God who had help them rebuild their lives.
It was God who had help them rebuild their old temple that Nebuchadnezzar had destroyed it was God who would help them rebuild the walls around the city of Jerusalem, the city without walls is easy and open to the enemies is a God and help them so much and you would think that the people would be grateful for the people would be joyful and sick God, you brought us out of nothing. We were in exile we were forgotten, but you brought us back into our land and love the temple to standing again, and love the city is functioning again.
Love the walls are up, instead of being grateful to God. They had become bitter and cynical and ungrateful to God. These people were angry with God because they were asking we would get it. You brought us back, but why did you send this out in the first place. Why did you let the Babylonians take us away in the first place. How we appreciate what you've done none for alarming thank you but do you realize how many of our men died like Daniel and make sure I can serve the said Dragon Abednego they were taken away from us. You know how many families lost their homes and their farms and the business is you know how many children died.
Why did you take us away.
There was still angry with God and by the way when the return somehow turned towards atheism.
It would. Atheism is didn't believe in God anymore. What they were saying is this was God, not strong enough to stop Nebuchadnezzar the prophet said oh no he was strong he was powerful within. Did God not care in the prophet said oh no, God loves you. God cares for you. So God is strong enough and God cares for us. Could it be that God doesn't exist, folks. Atheism is not something that began yesterday or in the last century. Many of the Jewish people came back in the promised land. The turn towards it or they turn towards Epicureanism knew what Epicureanism is the long word but it simply means this live for today. Who knows what could happen tomorrow coming ask our grandparents. They did not know that their lives would be turned upside down. Who knows what could happen tomorrow and enjoy life. And then there was a group that said oh no, were not to be used and were not to be Epicureans, but to serve God we don't like you much. They had become reluctant believers reluctant believers are there people who simply go through the motions. This simply go to the rituals, but inside they had their fists raised towards heaven.
We do not like you we hate you, but on the outside will do the temple thing will do the sacrifice thing but we don't believe in you is that you because of things that have happened in your life how people treated you or you lost a loved one through cancer relationship broke down or or marriage broke down whatever is happening in your life that you have become cynical and even sarcastic towards God. This is the people to whom Malachi came so I want you to hear those words very carefully as we begin this in the verse one the burden of the word of the Lord to Israel by Malachi. Some of the translations the Oracle but I believe the word is burden because there's a sense of heaviness.
This is going to be the last time that God will speak to these people before the coming of Jesus Christ.
And that's about 400 years away. There's a sense of heaviness in this message and I asked God every message I preach. God give me a burden. I want to get up here and preach a good sermon and tell some good illustrations and collect my check and go home. God give me a burden give me a heaviness for people are now want to listen to the dialogue. There's a dialogue going on between God and his people to sedate charge versus counter charge formats is like God says it, they come back at him and then he answers them, so keep that format in mind, let's begin. God says I have loved you by the word for love. There is a habit which means the covenant love is sovereign love. It means that I have loved you, means there's nothing that you have done or could ever do to merit my love is based on his divine election. I have chosen you something else is unconditional. There's nothing you can ever do for me to stop loving you is also a personal love seven minutes as I have loved you.
It is sovereign is coming from God's unconditional means you have no park to play and it is personal but it means this is not just a force coming towards you. God intimately cares about what you're going through and what you're feeling and where you are today.
It's a personal love, and how did the people respond if you say in what way have you loved us. You have to read that with a sneer. There is a scarf in what way have you love this. Have you heard kids say that to their parents. When mom and dad tell them we really love you honey front right you don't love me that's the tone in which the people were talking to God. Yeah right you don't love us and that's sad that God had to remind them. I love you. You know why because they were doubting the character of God.
There were saying God is not a God of love, if he was a God of love. Would he have allowed these things to happen. No need to cut these people some slack because they lived before the cross for us.
You think God needs to tell us the same.
I have loved you. You really think God needs to remind you this morning. I think about it if you don't believe that look to the cross.
2000 years ago, God gave his son to die for you is that a big enough statement to say God loves you when you said about yourself and you act as if God doesn't care. It is a slap in the face of God is spinning on the cross and say what that that's not good enough for me.
Do you really need to be reminded that God loves.
What more could he say listen to what God says to them was not Esau Jacob's brother says the Lord, your Jacob I have loved but he saw I have hated what God is saying to them is this wasn't your great great great great great granddaddy Jacob.
Do not pick him did not love him. And what does that mean that means your very existence is because of me. What more do you need everybody has a bad day right so you're having a bad day today on those bad days you don't need an uplifting message.
You don't need a phone call and all those things are wonderful and please do that to each other and really encourage you to carefully show you never know what someone's going to but you say in a today nobody called me and I had a rough time today and a really bad day today.
In that moment.
Stop and look back to her God has brought you from look back to where he found you, you don't need anybody tell you you need a phone call.
You need a word of encouragement you need a car from Hallmark MS wonderful those things are great and I hope you do it but don't you remember how much God has blessed you where he brought you from where were you 10 years ago what God is telling them is this. Don't you remember that I chose you to be my people, don't you remember that I am the reason for your existence and by the way, we don't have to go back to Jacob. We go back to Jesus gave his life for us than what is he say he said but Esau I have hated him.
That's real odd statement what he say that is one thing to say man I picked you and your ancestor. I loved and this is why you hear about why does he have to say Esau I have hated the reason God says that is because the descendents of Esau, which were the Edomites. If you look at the map on the bottom and were the Edomites. These people over the descendents of Esau Jacob's brother and for centuries for general ratios. They hated the Israelites they hated the Jewish people. In fact, when Nebuchadnezzar came against Jerusalem. These people in the south and southeast. The join forces with them and help set the city of Jerusalem on fire.
God was telling Tim the Jewish people as this. Don't think for a moment that I am going to let the Edomites get away. I am going to deal with them for what they did to you. The point is this the worst thing that ever happened to you is not that friend who turned his back on you. The worst that happened to you is not that relationship that didn't work out. The worst thing that happened to you is sin and what did God do to sin.
You nailed it to the cross. He who knew no sin became sin for us, that we might be the righteousness of God in him. That's what God did with sin and listen to what God says I have laid waste his mountains listen, I'm spiritualizing this but but but I see it's there, which means Satan has no power over you and his heritage for the jackals of the wilderness and this they will rebuild the Edomites everyone rebuild God's that I will tear down faster than you can rebuild another words I will deal with them. By the way God to deal with the Edomites because in the fifth century, a group of Arab tribes came and they drove the Edomites out of their land and by around 312 BC, the NABA tends took over that region. And if you seen the sum of the movies they have Petra using the city in the in the rocks in the mountain. I've been there's beautiful but it's a wasteland there's nothing there is nothing there. This was the home country of the Edomites. It is nothing but barren wasteland God judged them for what they did to his people, so also God has judged sin and Satan for what he has done to you. Listen to verse six is son honors his father and his servant his master. If then I am the father where is my honor if I am a master, where is my reverence, says the Lord of host was happening here is these people not only doubting the love of God. They were doubting the character of God. There were also defying the honor of God for refusing to give God the reference he deserved that when people think of the word reverence, they usually think of old cathedrals, quiet churches and organ music. I've been around the people who go to those old cathedrals and listen organ music. Many of them don't even believe in God possesses the veneer that since the surface that doesn't mean anything. What is really needed is is there a fear for God in your life. Is there a reverence for the things of God in your life.
The priest should've helped the people in that but they didn't listen to what they were doing. It says that if I'm a master, where is my reverence as the Lord of hosts to you priesthood despise my name and yet you say in what way have we despise your name do you it says by saying the temple of the Lord is contemptible. And when you all for the blind as a sacrifice is not evil nor the priests were doing the priest like pastors today. They should have let the people to fear God instead what they were doing was there were defying the honor of God.
They were telling people if someone brought a lame lamb or a blind sheep or whatever they would say it's okay going on but on the altar. Sorry they should've held a standard high, but instead they were saying. Aside going you have some left over food from last night left over as I can bring it, but on the table of showbread over there. Listen to what God says to them, and when you all for the blind as a sacrifice. Is it not evil when you offer the lame and the sick, is it not evil offer and then to your governor.
See if you can offer it to the Persian governor to see see if he will accept what you are throwing in the temple, show me a church that is in shambles, physically, and sure I'll show you lives that might be on the surface very pretty but on the inside there in shambles what you're doing is giving God would doesn't cost you much you try to throw something away. Please take it to the dumpster. Don't bring to church, bringing church is not good enough for your house but is good enough for the house of God that you want to give it away as a charity that's different way.
When it comes to the house of God and should be the best see what people were doing they would giving God the left over. They were giving God the left over money and time and talent does not happen. Even today, after I've done everything I need to do and been on every vacation was left overnight here. Oh God, if you have $500 on you paid all your bills been on every vacation, but all the nice shoes and dresses and everything you need, but you five dollars left, and God says give it to me and you so well. It's a lot of money now. But what I'll do, I'll do hundred dollars and you spent all night thinking about the $100 so I don't know the message I give up. This is more than what anybody else typically gives to go ahead and put the hundred on the often I see there you go.
God look what I've done for you. God says get out of here.
That's a blind lamb. Here comes another person all you have is $100 and this a God I don't have much but is all I have. God says bring it. I accepted, you get the point. You know why because we are prone to give what hurts the least. When was the last time you times it will tithers 10% and I know some of the theologians and try to explain that away and this always not tithing anymore you write is actually more good now.
Everything belongs to God. You're still ringing but doesn't cost you. Why does God say bring me something that cost you because it cost him his son on the cross. Listen to verse eight it said would he be pleased with you. Would he accept you favorably says the Lord of host but now in treat God's favor, that he may be gracious to us. While this is being done by you. You want God to bless you and yet you are robbing God. Once we retire. I promise you, man would get so involved in church when you retire you backs going to go out and he is going to go out of your head's gonna go out every just what will you gotta give the left over for God will God serve him now give him now your time, you talent your energy give the best to him now this is what God says here in verse 10, who is there among you who would shut the doors it would.
God is saying you like enough of this church shut the door to this church.
Why so that you would not kindle fire on my altar in vain because what you're doing is pretty much useless.
I have no pleasure in you, says the Lord of host nor will accept an offering from your hands full from the rising of the sun even to his going down my name shall be great. You don't call my name. Grady don't treat me as I'm great God says the Gentiles will say I'm great in every place incense shall be offered to my name, and a pure offering for my name shall be great among the nations is a lot of those, but you profane it and that you say the table of the Lord is contemptible. What they were saying was this is not as good as Solomon's Temple. I mean, I know we are build that up and all, but it's not as good as in verse 13. You also sent.
Here's where we began.
Oh, what a weariness is that the God's people get up and sounds with sick others in the church again today ago you if you don't go so-and-so will talk about the preachers not call us. I used to call our calling was not going go is all what a weariness in use and theoretically imagine God's people sneering at them like marking a going and you think believers do that even today host just because you had a bad preacher somewhere just because you had people who mismanaged money or did things sexually that was not right does not give you the right to sneer at God. Always keep in mind that is still God's church. It is still God who is the source of everything that is done so be very careful.
Some of you need to backpedal some some of you have become too bold when you talk about the things of God. Once again he says and you bring the stolen can imagine that it was stealing a lab as I every couple God.
Hope you enjoy this the lame and the said does she bring an offering, should I accept this from your hand, says the Lord, but cursed me the deceiver asked of. Now God says I'm going to curse you, who has in his flock a male and takes a valid but sacrifice to the Lord. What is blemish for I am a great King says the Lord of host and my name is to be feared among the nation's that God has to declare that I am a king, great king of course, God. You are a great King's we who are blind is we who are sinners this week who have gotten tired of you know someone once said, if you lost the joy of serving God loves the joy of the Christian life. You might as well stop the work of the Christian life because there's nothing more dull, more dry, more boring than Christian work without the joy without the reverence of God and true reverence has nothing do with this of this of this to reverence has to do with your heart that me being who I am that God gave his son for me. How can I ever get over that what he deserves for me is my best not what's left over. But my best and God. From this day on, I will never doubt that you love me no matter the circumstances, no matter what happens today, no matter if I'm having a bad thing.I know this much, you are. Thank you so much for joining us for this message is your love for God called allow Jesus to bring revival to your heart and remember to bring him the first the best of what you more information visit us email@example.com sermons notes checkup exercisable that I would on shop.com