Share This Episode
Connect with Skip Heitzig Skip Heitzig Logo

Guardrails to Knowing God’s Will - Part B

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig
The Truth Network Radio
April 19, 2023 6:00 am

Guardrails to Knowing God’s Will - Part B

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 1050 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

April 19, 2023 6:00 am

When we love God with all our heart, we can do what we want—because we only want what He wants. And in the message "Guardrails to Knowing God's Will," Skip shares how to know if you're acting with God's heart—or in your own interests.


So what Paul is saying is, whatever you do in word or in deed, that sort of takes in everything possible. Do all in the name or for the honor or for the glory of Jesus Christ. So you ask yourself when you're making a decision, is this consistent with the character of Christ?

Is this a decision Jesus would make? When we love God with all our heart, we can do whatever we want because we only want what He wants. And in today's teaching, Skip Heitzig shares some simple yet profound questions you can ask yourself to know if you're acting with God's heart or in your own interests.

But first... Staying in God's word is the best way to connect with God. That's why we've made these life-changing Bible teachings available to you and so many others around the world. And if you want to see more people come into a relationship with the living God through His life-changing Word, you can do that through your generous gift today. Your gift will help accomplish Skip's vision to get these messages into more major cities in this new year and reach more people across the globe with the gospel. To give, just visit slash donate. That's slash donate. Or you can call 800-922-1888.

800-922-1888. Thank you. Okay, let's open our Bibles to Colossians 3 as we join Skip. If I want to hear the voice of God or the voice of Christ, I read my Bible and that becomes a guardrail for me.

And notice this, let the Word of Christ or the Word of God dwell. Now that's a key word for this verse, because the word dwell means to settle down and be at home in. To settle down and be at home in. So home is comfortable.

Hotels are fine, but home is a lot better. So for some Christians, the only Bible verses they get is a sermon they listen to whenever they happen to attend church or a Bible verse from a song that they hear. That's about it. Well, that's a hotel Christian. That's the Word of God just sort of coming over from time to time whenever you're in the mood, just stopping by and saying hi and here I am, I'm a Bible verse.

But that's different than settling down and being at home. And notice the next word, let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly. It means abundantly. You should be jammed full of the Scripture, so much so that when people bump into you, that's what comes out. You know, if you bump into something that is filled with something, whatever is in that vessel is going to spill out. If the Word of God is in you and people bump into you, that's what comes out.

But if people bump into you and cursing comes out, well, that's what's in you. From the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. So the Bible should fill your life abundantly. You should be so full of the Word of God that if they cut you, you bleed Bible verses.

Now, how can you tell if the Word of God is dwelling in you richly? Well, it's pretty simple, really. First of all, you've got to read it. It's not going to dwell in you richly if you never read it. So you've got to read it. Secondly, you've got to study it. And then third, you've got to do it. Read it, study it, do it.

Let me give you a quick little outline about that. Heat it. That's not heat it up, but heed it, H-E-E-D. Heat it, handle it, hide it, hold it forth. You do those four things and the Word of God will dwell in you richly. So heed it, Matthew 13, 9. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.

You're listening, you're attentive, you're careful to take it in. Second, handle it. 2 Timothy 2.15, be diligent to present yourselves approved to God a workman that does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.

Heat it, handle it. Third, hide it, hide it. Psalm 119, verse 11, your word I have hidden in my heart that I might not sin against you. It's where you memorize Scripture so it becomes a part of you.

And then fourth, hold it forth, hold it forth. Philippians 2.16, holding forth or holding fast the Word of life. So be ruled by peace, be rooted in Scripture. Now something I want to point out really quickly, I just can't resist this, is Colossians 3.16 has a parallel that sounds an awful lot like another verse that's in Ephesians chapter 5.

Listen to this. This is Ephesians 5, verse 17, 18, and 19. Therefore, do not be unwise but understand what the will of the Lord is. Do not be drunk with wine in which is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, listen, speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord. Very similar wording, very similar pattern, but in one section it says be filled with the Spirit, the other book it says let the Word of God or Christ dwell in you richly. So what are we to conclude?

This is what I conclude. You want to know what it is to be filled with the Spirit? Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly. If the Word of Christ dwells in you richly, you will find yourself filled with the Spirit because the Word of God in your heart is the handle by which the Spirit of God turns your life, controls your will. So to be filled with the Spirit isn't to sit around and have a weird impression, it's simply to have a life saturated, dominated with Scripture. Now the only way I can stand up here and teach and preach, and I've had so many people try to tell me about this experience, and you know I've had people say, you know, you got like the easiest job in the world because you just got to work one day a week. I've had people say that. Really?

Really? So you just think it's magic, I just sort of stand up for an hour and just say things, and so the reality is it takes me about 20 hours of study and research and preparation to do one hour of pulpit time. It'd be a little more or less depending on the text.

I've done this a while, so maybe a little bit less in certain texts, but it's about 20 to 1. And the only way I can stand up here and do this is the Word of God has to dwell in me richly. I taught at a pastors' conference a few years ago, Bible study methods and sermon preparation, and I kind of gave to these young pastors what I do.

I find a text, I find and isolate the dominant thought of the text, I then outline the text, and the points serve the dominant thought, and I talked about history and language and background, and a couple of young pastors were talking to each other, and one turned to his friend, because that friend told me later, and the guy said, man, this sounds like a lot of work. And then he said to the guy next to him, do you do this? The guy said, yeah, I do this. And then he said, every week you do this?

He said, I do it every week. That's the discipline, that's the hard work of letting the Word of Christ dwell in you richly. So you want to know God's will? Be ruled by peace, be rooted by Scripture.

Now let me just add a little addendum to this quickly. It does not mean that the Bible has something specific to say about every single thing in life. If you try to find a Bible verse for every activity, good luck.

And people will call us on that, and they'll say things like, you've heard this, right? Well, the Bible didn't say you can't smoke marijuana. Well, the Bible didn't say you can't live with somebody before you're married.

Well, the Bible didn't say anything about driving cars either, or flying in airplanes, or is it God's will for you to take an Uber or a taxi? But the Bible's packed full of principles, general principles, that will give you a grid in order to make good, godly decisions. So be ruled by peace, be rooted in Scripture. Third, be reinforced by praise.

I love how this goes together. Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom. Teaching, that's positive, and admonishing, that's negative.

You tell somebody, don't do this, don't do that. Teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. Now this is where the Word of God that dwells in you richly is now reinforced by your praise to God.

This is the value of corporate worship. So when there's peace in the heart, and when there's truth in the mind, there's going to be praise on the lips. When the Word of God is inside of you, what comes out of you is this. Now something dawned on me this week.

I've always tried to figure this out, but it just dawned on me this week a truth that I want to pass on to you. I've always read Acts chapter 242, and it's sort of bothered me a little bit. It says, they devoted themselves to the apostles' doctrine, fellowship, breaking bread, and what's the fourth?

Prayer. Those were the four priorities of the early church, apostles' doctrine, fellowship, breaking bread, prayer. And I'd read through that and go, now why did they never in that section mention singing, worship? I mean, we get together and we have like 30 minutes to do that, and we get together and we have like 30 minutes of song, and then we have Bible study. But the priorities of the early church are listed, but singing isn't mentioned.

And it dawned on me this week. There's no need to mention it because it was part of the apostles' doctrine. And it's because I read these verses. When you get together, you teach and admonish one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs. They were singing to each other as part of the apostles' doctrine, the Word of God, the Word of God.

So look at these three categories. Psalms, you know what those are. That's in your Bible, the book of Psalms. The early church largely confined their worship at first to just singing the book of Psalms in their worship services.

We know this because that's what the synagogue did, and it was passed on. The second word is hymns, and hymns are expressions of praise that are not taken from the Psalms but are still based on truth. And I have a friend who a few years ago put together this great project called the Odes, and he produced a couple of albums based upon worship music that the church at Antioch sang. Now that's in your Bible. The church of Antioch was from A.D. 80 to A.D. like 125 or 160. So if you want to know what it's like to enter into the worship of the early church, scholars have found fragments of a hymn book, and they put these together, and John Shriner, his great musical producer, produced these albums, psalms and hymns. And by the way, you know what it was filled with? Singing psalms and other scriptural truths.

In fact, this might interest you like it interests me. It's believed that Colossians chapter 1 verses 15 through 20 were one of the hymns that was sung by the early church. Now Colossians 1 15 through 20 happens to be like the meatiest part of this book.

Listen to these lyrics. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. By him all things were created that are in heaven, that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones, dominions, principalities, or powers. All things were created through him and for him, and he is before all things, and in him all things consist, and he is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in from the dead, that in all things he might have the preeminence. Those are the lyrics of a song they sang.

I mean that's not like let's have love from above with a dove. I mean there were some meaty doctrinal truths that the early church sang. Another hymn, Philippians chapter 2 verses 6 through 11, that very famous text, let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus, who being in the form of God did not think it robbery to be equal with God, but made himself of no reputation, took upon himself the form of a servant. They sang that, and many others.

We have that from archaeological evidence. So psalms, hymns. Third is spiritual songs. These are testimony songs. These are songs about what God has done in our lives or in my life. It's a testimony song.

It'd be like Revelation chapter 5 verse 9. You have made us a kingdom of priests and to our God, and we will rule and reign with him by your blood. We are here, etc., etc. Testimony songs, spiritual songs. Now there's one common link in all of this musical expression. All of these are songs saturated with Scripture. And listen, every worship leader should aspire to doing this, to reinforcing the teaching that comes from the pulpit with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, to reinforce the Word of God. Warren Worsby said this.

There it is. Perhaps this poverty of Scripture, which he writes about in our churches, is one cause of the abundance of unbiblical songs that we have today. A singer has no more right to sing a lie than a preacher has to preach a lie. The great songs of the faith were, for the most part, written by believers who knew the doctrines of the Word of God. Many so-called Christian songs today are written by people with little or no knowledge of the Word of God. It is a dangerous thing to separate the praise of God from the Word of God.

Paul's whole point here is that when you have the guardrail of the Word of God, and that gets reinforced by worship to God that reflects that truth, it's very, very powerful. So, psalms, hymns, spiritual songs. And then you'll notice it says, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. Now, people get sort of hung up on this saying, well, that must mean that we just sort of get together, but we don't sing out loud. We sing in our hearts. So, a better translation is to sing with your heart or sing with all your heart. Put your heart into it when you sing.

Sing out loud and sing from your heart. And I'm only bringing this up because sometimes people get really weird, I think, in their Bible interpretations. You know, there's a whole branch of Christianity that says you can't have musical instruments in your worship, and it's all based on Ephesians chapter 5 where it says, making melody in your heart to the Lord. And so, it's all a cappella worship.

It's the Church of Christ, all a cappella worship. No music at all because the Bible says you can only make music in your heart. Well, if you add Colossians 3 now to that, it says you can only sing in your heart. So, what good would it be if we just all got together and just kind of didn't sing anything or play anything? Well, I'm doing it in my heart.

Well, why are we together? So, the point of this is that musical expression, both instrumental and vocal, should reinforce the truth of Scripture because it reminds us of His promise and it instructs us in His will. So, rule by peace, be rooted by Scripture, be reinforced by praise, fourth and finally, be regulated by honor.

Be regulated by honor. Verse 17 explains that. Verse 17 explains that. Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

Simple question to ask when you're making a decision. Will this honor the name of Jesus? Will this honor the name of Jesus?

Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus. You know that in Bible times, names were highly significant. Usually, when parents named their kids something, they either named them on what happened at their birth to commemorate that or an aspiration for what they believed that child would become or grow into, a purpose for his or her life.

So, for example, Abraham and Sarah had a child and they named him Isaac. Isaac means laughter. Why laughter? Because Sarah laughed when he was born. I mean, she's 90 years old and she's just like, before she laughed because she didn't believe it would happen. Now it happened and she's laughing out of joy.

So, it's like, I just had a baby. What do we name it? Name it hahaha. Name it laughter. Because we'll always remember that God did a miracle and it was hard for us to believe it. And when we did, we had great joy.

Let's call it laughter. And then Isaac had a couple of kids and the first one was Harry, a hairy little boy, and so they named him Harry. Esau means Harry. And then after Esau, the twin came out grabbing Harry's heel and so they called him Heel Catcher. That's what Jacob means, Sir Planter. And that is what he became. He became somebody who tripped his brother up later on in life through deception. But then we come to the name of Jesus and the angel told both Joseph and Mary, you will call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sin.

His name embodies his mission. It means savior or one who saves, for he will save his people from their sins. So, what are we called? When people say, what do you believe in?

What are you? And you say, I'm a, I'm a Christian. I am a Christian. We are taking to ourselves the name of Christ, which means our lives need to reflect his character.

This is a huge responsibility. I'm a Christian. You know, isn't it funny when you have a conversation with somebody and they ask you what you believe in? If you were to say, I'm a Baptist or a Presbyterian or a Lutheran, if you start naming denominations, they're okay with that. But when you say, I'm a Christian, you get a different reaction.

Not always a good one. I'm a Christian. I identify my life with Christ. So, what Paul is saying is, whatever you do in word or in deed, that sort of takes in everything possible.

Do all in the name or for the honor or for the glory of Jesus Christ. So, you ask yourself when you're making a decision, is this consistent with the character of Christ? Is this a decision Jesus would make?

Is this in keeping with his reputation? Or here's another way to ask that question, will I be proud of this decision at the judgment seat of Christ? Will I be proud of this decision at the judgment seat of Christ? So, we come full circle back to that little saying at the beginning, love God with all of your heart and do whatever you want. Because whatever you want is going to be what he wants because you are ruled by peace. You are rooted in Scripture.

That is reinforced by praise, and your life is regulated and decisions are regulated by, does this honor Jesus Christ? Now, I want to close with a paragraph from a book, and you can tell. Look at this book. Do you think I've read it a few times? This is a book that I've had in pieces from 1976.

1976, I've had this book a long time. So, it has gotten a lot of use, but there's a paragraph I just wanted to read to you because I liked it so much regarding this. It says, though the Bible never uses the word guidance, interesting, though the Bible never uses the word guidance, it does talk about a guide. You may seek guidance, but God desires to give something better.

Himself. The point I am making is a profound one. It's much more than a play on words. And deep in your heart, it is a guide, even more than guidance that you want. Which would you prefer to have while driving in heavy traffic to a strange city? A complicated set of instructions from someone on the sidewalk, or a kindly stranger who says, look, I'm on my way there right now. If you let me hop in, I'll show you the way.

You see what he's getting at? You have the Holy Spirit living in you. You have the guide. This is way better than opening your Bible and pointing to a verse. That concludes Skip Heitzig's message from the series Always Only Jesus.

Find the full message, as well as books, booklets, and full teaching series at Right now, we want to share about an eye-opening resource that will help you relate to Jesus in a special way. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most attested to facts in history. It is a fact that sets Christianity apart from every other world religion, and it's the reason for our hope. Of all of the religions in the world, only four of them are the ones that are the most important in the world. Only four of them are based upon actual personalities. Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism.

Those four are based upon the personality of the founder. But of all of those four religions, only one claims a resurrection for its founder. That's why we have hope. That's why we gather here today, because of that good news. This past Easter season, we've put together a special set of resurrection resources by Skip that include five of his finest Easter messages for audio download or on CD, and a full video titled On the Road. We want to send you a copy of this package of messages, as thanks for your gift to support Connect with Skip Heitzig and help grow this teaching ministry to reach more people in major cities in the U.S. this year. So request your package when you give your gift of $50 or and take a walk with the risen Lord on the road to Emmaus. Just call 800-922-1888 or visit slash offer.

That's slash offer. Be sure to listen again tomorrow as Skip shares an insightful message about the four essential components of a godly home. Now, what he seems to be saying is that if you have been transformed and you are in a family situation, you're not just a wife. You're a new wife. You're not just a husband. You're a new husband. You're not just a child. You're a new child. You're not just a parent. You're a new parent. Connect with Skip Heitzig is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never changing truth in ever changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-19 06:54:10 / 2023-04-19 07:03:46 / 10

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime