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Zeal vs. Zeal (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
The Truth Network Radio
July 15, 2022 6:00 am

Zeal vs. Zeal (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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July 15, 2022 6:00 am

Pastor Rick teaches from the book of the Acts

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Things are very simple.

You're not going to just somehow figure it out on your own. These things come through the Spirit of God. Today, Pastor Rick will continue his message called Zeal vs Zeal as he teaches through Acts Chapter 5.

He says, Well, servants, that's what they were, and they weren't called to be free. They were called to preach. We have come to expect this from these apostles as we've moved through. We've watched them mature from the days that they walked with Christ in Galilee. There are times to flee.

There are times to engage, directly engage. Let's go back to Kings again with that prophet, Elijah. At one point, they come to arrest him, and he said, Man of God, come with us.

You're under arrest. And he says, If I'm a man of God, let fire come down from heaven. And they were gone. That is a pretty powerful prophet. But before that, going back to his great escape, God said to him, Get away from here and turn eastward and hide by the brook Kirith, which flows into the Jordan. And he wasn't ashamed to hide at the command of God. That's what was called for. And he wasn't ashamed to go stand in front of Ahab when that was called for either.

But it's this reference here. Speak to the people all the words of this life. Okay, Christians, what do you speak to people? Well, I hope that when you do speak the words of life, it is at the prompting of the Holy Spirit.

Peter has the honor of coining this phrase in the Bible, the words of life. In John's Gospel, Jesus didn't ask people to come back to church. When they decided to leave, he said, Okay, see you. And he turns to the ones that stayed. Do you stand or are you going?

Two. And this is a pattern that I think the churches should follow. Well, at this point, Jesus preached a sermon that a lot of people didn't like. So much so, they said, We're out of here. We're leaving this church.

We're not coming back. I don't know if they always talk like that, but you get the feeling that they do. Some of you have left other churches. Did you say that to you like that? I don't know. Anyway, just having a little fun.

Don't get uptight over that. But you won't because the anointing is on. Anyway, Jesus said to the Twelve, Do you also want to go away? And Simon answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. I love that. Where are we going to go?

Nobody's got this. Just you. And we're not giving it up for anybody. Some of those people that left, I like them. But this is where I belong.

I wish we would catch more of that. So Peter is the one. And later he will write, His divine power has given to you all things that pertain to life. It is one of the scripture verses that a lot of Christians bypass, even reject. They don't believe that the scripture gives you all the words that pertain to human behavior.

You want to know how to behave, what to do? I think one of the setbacks or great causes of Christians crumbling is that they're not ready for the opposition. God says, I'm going to be with you. But He does not say you will not be opposed. He promises all those who live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution in one form or another. Be it from your flesh, be it from somebody else.

It's coming. And when you know this, the hit is not, you're not sucker punched. You're ready for this. And thinking that God is just going to sweep all of your bad feelings, your moods away, your depression away, your anger, your road rage, it's not going to happen like that more than likely. What is going to happen is you're going to have to draw your short sword because the enemy is going to be that close to you. Your long sword is going to be useless at that point.

You need both. And I think that there's the role of the pastor to ready the sheep because he's got to be ready himself. So I'm not just telling you some ivory tower words where I'm just up in some ivory tower and I don't have to face these things. I've faced them too. There are things that give me a knot in my stomach.

There are things pastoring. Oh gosh, I've got to deal with this. Well, that's the heat in the kitchen and that's where you've been called to. Take it. Okay, I'm going to take it, but, but I don't want to take it, Lord, if you're not with me. Well, I'm going to be with you. All right.

Everything gets better after that. It's an ongoing process. It's not a one-time deal. It's not I'm strong today and I'm going to be strong forever in this life.

This is not how it works. It works as I'm strong today and I can be strong next time if I follow the basics and stick with the Lord. Well, they are told, give the words. That is the complete gospel. Do not leave out that which hurts and make sure you don't leave out that which helps.

This is what they're told to do. You know, a half-filled prescription can kill somebody. We do not have a half-filled gospel. We have the whole thing. The worst results follow keeping back the doctrine.

What are you saving them to? Well, you know, I'm not going to tell them the truth. Paul said, because I tell you the truth, am I now your enemy?

Well, it has to be that way because I'm not going to lie to you to be your friend. We may not see the results of holding back doctrine from preaching our faith and being witnesses, but they will follow. They will come. The damage will happen if we withhold the truth and the teaching.

Maybe the next generation will parade the damage for us. Maybe some of that is what's going on. The churches have been withholding the truth, withholding the doctrine. Preoccupied not all churches, of course, but many of them. Preoccupied with just getting people into the pews and getting attendance and building on that edition or whatever else it is they're trying to do except preach to Christ.

Maybe that next generation will parade the damage done by truth concealed or withheld. Unsaved people are sinners under the blanket of darkness and therefore they are blind. And to help them get out of that, there's that witness of our life and there's the preaching of the truth. Let's just consider some doctrines that you should know. The advents, plural, of Christ. That is his first coming and his second coming, which has not yet occurred. The virgin birth.

Do you know how to preach about it? It's a miracle. I don't believe in a virgin birth.

It's crazy. It doesn't happen. Well, that's the whole point. The whole point of the virgin birth is saying this is unlike anything you've ever seen before and it's only the beginning of what's coming. The virtuous life of Christ, that he and he alone was sinless.

No one else, no one else of human beings is sinless except the Christ. His death in my place, doctrinally called the vicarious death. The death of Christ for me. Christ died on the cross as a sinner, being sinless though, taking my punishment for my sin. He died for me as me. Covers all sinners. His victorious resurrection. Don't leave that out.

He's the one that died and got up again. The deity of Christ. Do we preach that? That Christ is the son of God, therefore equal with the father, not counting it robbery to be equal with the father.

Or are we preoccupied with our own problems? That we can't get to these doctrines. Maybe that's why God doesn't bring the unbelievers our way. The doctrine of justification. How God sees me because of my relationship with Jesus Christ. That he doesn't look at my sins, he sees what Christ has done. That he has washed them all away. That this justification does not belong to everybody but only to those who come. Sanctification, the processes of Christianity and the development as a Christian becoming more and more like Christ. Glorification, what we get in the end, the rewards. We get heaven, no more tears, no more sorrow, no more telemarketers. God loves them too but they need to repent.

They have the gift of annoyance. Anyway, grace and commandments. We need to preach these things to unbelievers. Well, that's a serious doctrine for later.

No, it's not. All doctrine is for right now if we can articulate it. Paul taught believers in Thessalonica about the second coming of Christ, the end times. The filling of the spirit, the indwelling of the spirit, the ruin that sin has done to all humanity, the redemption that is available and the judgment to come. These are doctrines and when the apostles were told to go teach, this was in their teaching.

It belonged to it. Should someone have cross-examined them, asked them a question, they would have been ready because of their doctrine. You take notes, that's one thing. Do you study those notes? Does the doctrine get in you?

Can you say this is what I believe? These are fundamentals. They're not complicated. Now, there are those that can take any one of the doctrines that I listed and complicate it so much you won't know what to believe. You've got to learn to avoid those types. They write thick books on one subject.

These things are very simple. Don't be intimidated by the word doctrine. Teaching is another word. It's what we believe. So, the angel says, speak to the people all the words of this life. That is doctrine. That is what we believe about this life because of Jesus Christ and you're not going to stumble into it.

You're not going to just somehow figure it out on your own. These things come through the Spirit of God. They are taught. Every Christian is to be homeschooled in Christ by their Father. And He uses the Christ and the Holy Spirit and Himself and this is how He has arranged it.

I admire universities, how much knowledge is there to a point and there's the point. I don't come up here and teach you about medicine or civil engineering or science and I don't appreciate them teaching the word of God. That is for the house of God and by doing it the way they've done it, they have complicated and ruined everything if you ask me. Well, no one's asked you.

Well, then I'll ask myself. Anyway, I'll restrain myself. I'm getting zealous.

I'm becoming hot because it is about zeal. I want Christians to be in schools, to be in universities, to be in many places, not every place, but in many places. We want the Christians to be, to bring the gospel, but we want to understand too the importance of the church. As I said this I think last week, you should not have the same feeling when you walk into a supermarket or a retail store or a garage or anywhere, a hospital. You should not have the same feeling as when you walk into the house of God. It is the only place that I know of where Christ says that he bought the church, the ecclesia, the assembly with his blood.

Well, if he feels that way about it, I'm going to feel that way about it. I believe in these things because I believe the Bible teaches them. I believe in the high office of a pastor not because I am a pastor but because the Bible teaches that.

When Paul said to Titus, don't let them despise your authority. We need these kinds of things. Do you feel a little uneasy around your pastor?

You should. That's a good thing. I'm not totally uneasy.

That would be a bad thing. But there's that little edge, you know, this guy bites. And it's good. When I was around my pastor I knew, you know, he's my pastor. He's got this authority that I consent to.

And this holds everything together better than anything else. It's called reverence. And reverence is a good thing if it is not abused. Well, coming back to this zeal versus zeal, because as the apostles were zealous for what they were preaching, there were those zealous for shutting them down. They were so jealous that they murdered Christ to do it. Verse 21, and when they had heard that they entered the temple early in the morning and taught.

But the high priest and those with him came, called the council together with all the elders of the children of Israel and sent to the prison to have them brought. I've been waiting for this verse all morning just to say this little thing. When they heard that, that stoked the men. They were delivered by an angel, go preach it.

They were stoked when they heard that. I just, I love this part of verse 21 in this section we're in. The angel in verse 20 told them, go and they're going. They entered the temple early in the morning and taught. They were called to preach, and they were called to pray, and they were called to perform. Now, this part about they entered the temple early in the morning, well they were delivered at night, which suggests that well, okay, we're free from jail, let's go home, freshen up, because we've got to get to the temple early. And that's what seems to be going on. Luke doesn't bog us down with those details.

He's got better ones for us. Verse 22, but when the officers came and did not find them in the prison, they returned and reported. Verse 23, saying indeed we found the prison shut securely and the guards standing outside before the doors, but when we opened them, we found no one inside. Verse 24, now when the high priest, the captain of the temple and the chief priest heard these things, they wondered what the outcome would be.

I bet they did. So, they're delivered miraculously from this jail. And when the officers come to bring them before the council, they find them not there. They report this to, in verse 21 where it says they entered the temple in the morning, but the high priest and those with him came and called the council. They had this big council going about these disciples.

They go to bring them before them, they're gone. The spiritual blindness to Christ is worse than any other handicap known to man because of its reach. It reaches beyond this life. It takes people to hell. And, of course, Satan has decided if we can just bloat that word hell to make it mean less than what it means, we will dumb down a lot of people.

And so it's used for, what the, and they just use it everywhere. You know, before they can just say no, they have to put that in front of it. Why does somebody have to say hell no?

Why not say no to hell and draw closer to Christ instead? You've got it all messed up. Why? Because you're blind. You can't see. Well, I'm looking right at you. Yeah, but you're not looking at Christ.

You can't see who he is. 2 Corinthians 4, Paul, whose heart was never far away from reaching the lost and desiring to, he says, whose mind, the god of this age, has blinded. Satan is only god of this age because he has been appointed by the people under his sway. God is that controlling influence.

And some people have a controlling influence that's a lie. It's called idolatry. They make up their own gods. So when Paul says, whose mind, the god of this age, is blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them? You cannot say that about any angel or any prophet. Could someone say, you're the image of God. We are made in his image, but that image has been marred by sin. So when you look at another human being, you're not seeing what God created. You're seeing what has happened because of sin. And then the reconstruction starts when you're born again, regenerated into the image of Christ. It would be blasphemous if he were less than God to say, I'm being transformed into the image of someone less than God. That's not good enough.

No, I'm being transformed into the image of the Son of God, who is God the Son. So those who are looking to protest against decency in churches, and today they've got their word out to go disrupt and agitate, they're blind. They're blind. They don't see who Christ is, and they don't see where they're going. That does not excuse them. This kind of blindness is not something that will pardon them.

They must come to Christ. Paul, when he gives a testimony about his conversion, he says, I saw the light. I saw it.

Another thing that the world likes to goof on, you know, they make comedy of it. Oh, I saw the light, brother. No, you did not. And if you did and you're too dumb to go to the light, then you deserve to be that dumb. You say, that's harsh.

That's true. I mean, you know, sometimes it's the bad cop in us that has to make its point, and I just use the bad cop in me. I like the bad cop in me.

I just got to watch him because he gets, you know, bad. Anyway, verse 25, so one came and told them, saying, look, the men whom you put in prison are standing in the temple and teaching the people. There they go again. What an exciting time to be a Christian in Jerusalem, right? For now, because trouble's on the horizon. Death is coming to believers. Verse 26, then the captain went with the officers who brought them without violence, for they feared the people lest they should be stoned. Yeah, the people were being blessed, and here comes the authority now, and they want to put an end to this, so they've got to watch their step. That was their motive for not abusing the apostles, not, well, they arrested them peacefully because they were taken by the message, which happened with Christ. Christ preached. They went to arrest him, and the officers come back and say, nobody has preached like this. We just couldn't.

What could we do? Anyway, the apostles go peacefully. Now we're going to be coming up close to civil disobedience here. Verse 27, and when they had brought them, they set them before the council, and the high priest asked them, saying, verse 28, did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man's blood on us.

They couldn't even say his name. There's something very special about the name of Jesus. In Jesus' name, amen. There is a shortened version of the name Yahweh saves. That's what the name means. The name of Jesus, or Yah'shua.

Moses is the one that took Joshua and gave him that name and shortened it. Anyway, verse 27, the stark contrast between the apostles and the members of this council. This council, they were refined, they were religious, well-educated, and powerful. Nothing wrong with any of those, except their ministry had no power because they were anti-Christ.

That's where it goes wrong. The apostles, they were common people, some of them not well-educated, but educated. They were not ignorant men. They were born again, and with the power of God, they were changing lives, unlike anything anybody had ever saw. The council was trying desperately to retain their influence, the council's influence, and not let the apostles outdo them, and the people started listening to them. So, with risks to their lives, the apostles state the truth of the living God from his word. Paul would write this to the church in Rome. He wanted to get to Rome.

He said, I want to get there. I want to share some spiritual fruit with you. I want to make a righteous boast that I was there and I preached in Rome. So, in writing this letter to them, he said, I'm not ashamed of the gospel of Christ. We're just the power of God to salvation, to everyone who believes, and that is a fact.

There's not a height requirement, a weight requirement. We're all glad about that. There's just, you come, and Christ is hated for this. How dare he do that? In verse 28, they insisted that the apostles submit to their authority. Didn't we command you? Didn't we insist you use our pronouns?

Y'all got some nerve. Is that a pronoun? Isn't that? Anyway, and look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine. What an honor. The enemy is admitting that they were succeeding.

He didn't have to pay a marketing agency to go find out how you were doing. Teaching the person of Christ, his cross, his resurrection. The Old Testament law already covered morality, and these were instilled as a Jewish-centered environment, and there was no need yet to go into thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal. Paul's going to have to do a lot of that when he's dealing with Gentiles coming into the church, because they're going to be bringing all sorts of lewdness with them, polygamy being just one of them. 1 Corinthians 2, in connection to you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, because that's all they were preaching. For I determined, Paul wrote to the Corinthians, not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.

He wasn't trying to be a shrewd businessman or anything like that. He was just preaching Christ. You've been listening to Cross Reference Radio, the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia. As we mentioned at the beginning of today's broadcast, today's teaching is available free of charge at our website. Simply visit That's We'd also like to encourage you to subscribe to the Cross Reference Radio podcast. Subscribing ensures that you stay current with all the latest teachings from Pastor Rick. You can subscribe at or simply search for Cross Reference Radio in your favorite podcast app. Tune in next time as Pastor Rick continues teaching through the book of Acts, right here on Cross Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-24 01:52:49 / 2023-03-24 02:02:18 / 9

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