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When God Interrupts (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
The Truth Network Radio
December 29, 2022 6:00 am

When God Interrupts (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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December 29, 2022 6:00 am

Pastor Rick teaches from the book of the Acts


What are we going to do in Kings, when we're done with Kings? Well, the leading I'm getting now are the Minor Prophets. And the Minor Prophets are to the Old Testament what Paul's epistles are to the New Testament. Dealing with the Jewish people that were pushing back on authority.

The authority of God's Word, the authority of the Prophets, the authority of God. It will cause a silent uprising and it will last until the last apostle is dead. When God interrupts is the title of Pastor Rick's message and today he'll be teaching in Acts chapter 10. I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.

And that's what we see taking place here. This is something God had told his prophets long ago would happen. Jeremiah, you can hear this passion in Jeremiah's words. He says, Oh, Yahweh, just by that, my strength and my fortress, my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come to you from the ends of the earth and say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, worthlessness and unprofitable things.

Will a man make gods for himself which are not gods? Jeremiah's words are being, elements of it, are being fulfilled right here. The Gentiles are coming to the apostle. They sent for Peter. We're not following the lies of Greek mythology. Well, it wasn't mythology to them. It was the Greek gods.

It was very real to them at that time. And they're saying, This is not God. And they asked Peter to come, and come he did. Disciples of Christ, not disciples of Moses. You know what Moses would say to that after the resurrection and the giving of the Holy Spirit? Preacher stands up and says, We are disciples of Jesus Christ, not disciples of Moses. You know what Moses would say?

He would say, Amen. Everything I preached was pointing to the coming of the anointed one, the incarnate God, Jesus Christ. Verse 46, Well, they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God.

Then Peter answered. Well, the tongues were used here as proof. Tongues have been used as trouble in the church so often. It has such a little place in scripture, but it makes such a big problem.

How great a forest a little fire will kindle. That's right. I'm sorry.

Just proving to you once again, my errors are correct. Something about tongues, we just need to talk about it, because there are others who are confused, and they will confuse you if you're not careful. These men had witnessed these Gentiles speaking in tongues, and I'll define that briefly in a moment. They could not refute this. They could not dismiss it. The way God entered in, God said, I'm going to come in.

I'm going to burst into this in such a way that there'll be no mistake, and you'll never forget it. And this is exactly what he did, and that's why tongues were effective for him at this time on that day. They witnessed God at work.

Nothing was casual about this. This wasn't a bunch of intellectual people saying, you know, Peter, we agree with what you're saying. Not that that would have been wrong, but it's so much more powerful. The gift, the gift is not the tongues. The gift is the Holy Spirit. The tongues are just an outward sign that the Holy Spirit is doing something himself, right here, right now.

Confirming their conversion by pouring evidence upon them, because that's what was needed. True tongues, as used in the New Testament, are in a static language of praise to God. I got a new big bumper put on my trunk, so if I hit any deer, I don't have to slow down. I haven't seen any deer since I got it, but I found a leaflet, and it was written in deer.

Watch out for that guy in his trunk. That would be another language, right? Of course it didn't happen. If any of you are out there looking in the woods for this leaflet, you're not going to find it. Anyway, it's another language. Tongues is another language. It is a language, a language from heaven to praise God. It's a little different from the day of Pentecost when the apostles spoke and people heard them in their language. It's a different kind of tongue than the tongue that is here magnifying God. Paul has to teach on this as he moves forward in a static language, given only by God. 1 Corinthians 14, verse 2, where he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men, but to God.

How much more plain does that have to be? Because you'll see people speak in tongues and then give you a prophecy interpretation. That's not what tongues are. God wants to give a prophecy. He uses the language, the vernacular of the people. Why does he have to go around a corner like this? Well, you say, well, then why does he have to praise like this?

Because it is an emotional experience on a separate level. It goes outside the normal, and it is not to be that tool used to interrupt the gift of teaching the Word of God. He continues, Paul does, for no one understands him. However, in the Spirit he speaks mysteries, unless there is an interpreter. God gives Peter the ability to interpret the tongues of these Gentiles on this day.

He is able to say what they were saying. He says they're magnifying God. And to magnify God is to see him big. God is big. Man's God is tiny, very small, very petty. To magnify is not to make something bigger.

It is to see it as bigger. And the Old Testament prophets were all over that. Job chapter 36 verse 24, remember to magnify his work of which men have sung.

Way back in the days of Job before, this is outside of Judaism. They were praising the Lord in Psalm. Psalm 34 verse 3, oh, magnify Yahweh with me, and let us exalt his name together. Well, then that Psalm, of course, they're doing it in the Hebrew. Tongues is in a static, a divine language given to us, and not to everyone.

Nor does it have to be given to everyone. Psalm 69, 30, we're talking about magnifying the Lord. Tongues is used to do just that.

I will praise the name of God with song and will magnify him with thanksgiving. And for some people, the emotions run so high, they burst into this other language. It's a gift.

But again, not for everyone. It is a form of adoration. And I believe in tongues, and I believe in the rules given about tongues in the Scripture concerning the assembly. And it is, I don't think it should be repeated like this because it's not the same thing. Again, this is not an assembly of believers gathered before Peter.

Maybe I've lost some of you with this. If you've ever dealt with people who argue tongues, you're probably listening very intently. If you've not dealt with people in tongues, you're probably saying, what is he talking about? Well, the education of Christianity comes from the Scripture, and the Scripture teaches about these things, and we have to cover them.

That's what expositional teaching is all about, or at least hopes to be. 1 Corinthians, so before I read 1 Corinthians, so you get someone who says, well, I just couldn't help myself. I was so into worshiping God. I just couldn't help myself, and I started interfering with everybody because I was full of the Spirit. I doubt that.

You're full of yourself, probably. And here's what Paul says about this stuff. The spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. 1 Corinthians 14, 32. In other words, don't go claim that, you know, I lost control of everything.

God, the Holy Spirit, does not put us out of control. Tongues are no indicator of spiritual rank. Uh-oh, you don't speak in tongues? You're just a corporal. I speak in tongues every day. That makes me a general.

It's not true. Never, never are tongues given to show off, and yet people do this all the time. Oh, look at me. Some of you have gone to churches where the same person gets up at the same time during the service and blurts out in tongues, and no one throws ice water on them. Because that would stop it, wouldn't it not? Pepper spray would be another way. It's not tongues. You're interrupting the service.

You're drawing all the attention to you. We're not here to watch you do this every Sunday morning at 9.45. I was a new Christian, but I had read through the Bible, and I attended a church. I'm not going to say which denomination, and the same person would get up every Sunday and do it, and I would just say to myself every time, it's not in the Bible. The Bible says don't do this. Churches that say, listen, the word of God is paramount. We're going to reduce the distractions.

Do you know how much blowback they get from Christians on this? Okay, look, you cannot bring a hoagie sandwich into the service this morning. No, you can't have your double latte and whatever else you drink.

No, a bottle of water is not permitted during service. You'll make it. Trust me.

Old McDonald had a church, EIEIO, and here's a swig, there's a swig, everywhere a swig swig. What would that do? You're trying to teach them. I'm a little goofy doing it. So you just say, can you just wait? No, you can't wait. I have a medical condition. No, you don't. You might have a mental condition, but you don't have a mental condition. There are some people that do have a medical condition where they've got to have water every 15 minutes. They've got to watch online.

What if the person had to be bionic plague? Well, we've got to make a place for them. Not here.

There are restrictions. And, of course, we won't even go into the children and the sanctuary one. Whoa. My pastor put the kids' ministry down the block.

Seriously. You go to Gary, Chavo, Costa Mesa. Where's the children's ministry? Well, you get on the three-floor bus and you take it down. And in that church seats 2,000 people. Once you get up to go out to the sanctuary during the service, you don't get back in.

The ushers will take you out. Imagine, you have 1,000 people watching someone speaking. Everybody's looking at the person getting up. What about the person that has to stand up when he's not supposed to stand up and they're praising God? Well, who's now listening to the Word?

You're watching Mr. Look How Spiritual I Am. This happens all the time. Calvary Chapel comes along to a neighborhood and says, you know, we're not going to do that. Oh, man.

Knives come out. And it hurts to see it because I think that they missed the point. The Word of God is so important that Satan hates it. And he wants to shut it up. And he wants Christians to be dumbed down. He doesn't want you to receive expositional teaching from the Word of God through the system of God. He just wants you to feel the faith and just know enough Christianity.

That's what he would be satisfied with. You say, well, you're offending me. Well, I'm not trying to offend you.

But if you're guilty, then you have to be offended or else you can't be corrected. To convict, to rebuke, to exhort. That's the role of the pastor.

Doing what I'm doing now when we come to it. He is supposed to correct aberrant behavior as defined in Scripture. Many Christians say, thank you, Lord. And a small element will protest.

And that's the way it's going to be. Well, coming back to this, there's no mention of Paul the apostle speaking in tongues when he was filled with the Holy Spirit in Acts chapter 9. Tongues is not that important.

The Samaritans, they were filled with the Holy Spirit. We read about that in Acts chapter 8. No mention of tongues there. There's no mention of tongues at the conversion of the Ethiopian eunuch who clearly was filled with the Holy Spirit when he says, what prohibits me from being baptized?

I love the Lord. When Paul prayed for the Colossians in Colossians chapter 1 verses 9 through 12, he lists the critical needs of believers. Things like spiritual discernment, faith, wisdom, signs of righteousness in their behavior and in their works and in their fruit. But he omits tongues. That would be odd if tongues were an imperative to salvation, to Christianity. So the bottom line is, tongues is a gift, but there are other gifts. No one gets them all.

We get what we need and God is the one that assigns them. And it is too bad that this has become a hot point in the church because it has really no basis from scripture to be such trouble as it is in some circles. It is so up north in New York, for example, a lot of people are tripped up by this. I haven't ran into too many of them here in the south.

And the ones that I have run into I've eliminated. They've sent to the cornfield. No. Alright, well back to this. Now some of you might think that's not funny because you don't have the gift of humor. You need to pray. Come up, you know, Pastor, I never laugh. Alright, come back to this now. Tongues in the book of Acts, they occur only in the presence of the apostles.

Incidentally, just saying. If you have the gift of tongues, I encourage you to speak it when you're in prayer and home and in your prayer closet, especially. Let it go. But if it becomes that thing that begins to draw attention to you or to interfere with other things God is doing, you need to lock it down.

Exercise discipline and restraint. I want to move on from this. I'll close it up by saying this. Sometimes tongues accompany the filling of the Holy Spirit and sometimes it does not. And that's what the Bible preaches and that's why I mentioned when the various groups were filled with the Spirit and the omissions of the tongues. Paul encouraged believers to earnestly desire the best gifts.

What is that? Well, love. He says pursue love but desire the best gifts.

It's what's needed. If I'm in another country, say a third world country as we call them, maybe I need different gifts than what I would need here in a country that is more developed. God will decide that. Anyway, coming back to this, I do believe tongues, the gifts have not stopped. Otherwise, Paul would have said get them while they're hot. But I do believe that the gifts are continuous.

Verse 47, can anyone forbid water that these should not be baptized to have received the Holy Spirit just as we have? Peter is still amazed at what's going on. All of them are. The emotions are running very high at this moment. And he says to them, object now or forever hold your peace. If you don't like the fact the Holy Spirit is done for the Gentiles just as he's done for the Jews, then let's hear you say it now. It was conclusive. No objections.

Radical development in the history of the church and Christianity. Water baptism announces our commitment to Christ. It is our signature. I'm signing. Write my name down. I'll write my name down. Where do I sign up? Water baptism says right here.

I've signed up. Symbolically, my sins are washed away. Symbolically, the old me before Christ is dead. All those views that I had before Christ have died and when I come up out of the water, it's a new me, washed, cleansed by the lamb. Everything now is filtered through him.

He says receive. Verse 47. Can anyone forbid water that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit? See, there's that principle of salvation.

The Greek word lambano means just that. To receive it. To take hold of it. Full incorporation into Christianity by faith alone and Christ alone.

Why do I repeat myself? Because these are the things that we Christians ought to say when we have a chance to witness to lost souls. Salvation is through Christ alone by faith alone in Christ. When we are baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus, that is inclusive of the Godhead. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, for Jesus taught that.

California, that used to be a big problem. Big group walking around saying you have to be baptized in Jesus' name only. And again, cherry picking the scriptures where they lose sight of what Jesus said in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Well, coming now to verse 48. And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord.

Then they asked him to stay a few days. So it was a command. We are commanded to be baptized. That doesn't mean if you're not baptized you still go to heaven by belief in Christ alone.

But still the commandment remains. We are to be water baptized. Matthew 28, 19. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. A lot of work in that verse. To make a disciple? A lot of work. A lot of years.

It takes for us to develop in the presence of others. Acts chapter 10, verse 6. Before I read that, let me set it up. Here Peter stays. They asked him to stay a few days, verse 48. This is what they did with Christ also. They asked Christ to stay with them.

The Samaritans did. John's gospel, chapter 4, verses 40 and 41. So when the Samaritans had come to him, they urged him to stay with them. And he stayed there two days and many more believed because of his own word. And there again is the preaching of the word. When Simon was told by the angel to send for Peter, he was told Peter will tell you what you have to do. And Peter did that. He talked about the remission of sins and receiving Christ and after they did that, then Peter commanded that they should be baptized. Acts 10, verse 6.

He is lodging with Simon a tanner whose house is by the sea. He will tell you what you must do. So becoming a Christian means you submit. You come under orders. The centurion that sent for Christ, my servant is dying. Can you come? And as Christ was coming to heal the servant, the centurion sent messengers and said, you're not worthy.

This is a Gentile. I'm not worthy for you to come to me. I am a commander and I tell a man to go and he goes.

I tell him to come and he comes. I have that authority. You have that authority. I see, Jesus, that you can tell the demons to go and they go.

You can tell the sickness to leave and it leaves. Jesus applauded this. He said, I haven't seen this kind of faith in Israel. And the servant, of course, was healed that hour. Well, Christ, He came as a servant under authority of the Holy Spirit and His Father. I always do those things that He wills. He had authority because He was under authority. When you learn to be under authority, there's an authority that is created within your own life. Unless, of course, you are just that proverbial drama queen where you have to insert into every experience trouble, a confrontation, a conflict, a you being right and everybody else being wrong, a you being mistreated and everybody else is mistreating you. It's always something.

It's never a smooth C with you. You could be among friends and you're still looking for an opportunity to bite them. Don't do that. Come to Christ. Come under the authority. It is authority by consent and it is how things get done effectively in Christianity. It seems that those six men that accompanied men that followed Peter from Joppa, that they conducted the baptism because he says to them, and he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord instead of actually doing it himself. Well, Christ, we're told, He didn't do the baptizing. He delegated it to the apostles. Saved apart from strict Judaism. But Peter kicked the hornet's nest. His Christian countrymen in Jerusalem are going to stumble over this.

They're going to be waiting for him when he gets back. We get that in chapter 11. It's a painful read. I don't enjoy reading about conflict amongst Christians in the scripture because I live it as a pastor. It's just, you know, maybe you have a job that, maybe you're a school teacher and you don't want to come to church and teach in classrooms too.

That's understandable. Do something else. For me, when I come across the confrontations in the Bible, I'd rather skip them. I'd rather skip Corinthians.

I'd rather go to Revelation, where just the bad people get beat up. But I try to be under authority. I try to listen and say, Lord, what do you want me to do?

And He knows how to either tell me straight out or bring to the surface a dominant sentiment that won't go away. And I know that's the leading. That's where I have to go. What are we going to do when we're done with kings? Well, the leading I'm getting now are the minor prophets. And the minor prophets are to the Old Testament, what Paul's epistles are to the New Testament. Dealing with the Jewish people that were pushing back on authority. The authority of God's word, the authority of the prophets, the authority of God. It will cause a silent uprising and it will last until the last apostle is dead, until enough Gentiles come into the church.

They will hound Paul on this matter because Paul will articulate better than anyone why we as Christians are not under Mosaic law. 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 / 2022-12-29 10:20:08 / 2022-12-29 10:29:27 / 9

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