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December 31, 2020 8:00 am
God has an encouraging word for you and me today. Through the Bible-based reading of Dr. Don Wilton and a message on obedient courage were on the way the ad acts chapter 8 in just a moment with Dr. Wilson was remind your reader to pray with you anytime at 866-899-WORD@866-899-WORD 9673.
We would love to connect with you now about an encounter between two people, one of the people had a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
The other one did not and then an encounter took place. So let me just read verse 26 of the book of acts and chapter 8 non-Angel of the Lord said to Philip, rise up and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza. This is a desert place. So for the rows up and he went and there he found an Ethiopian eunuch I court official of Candace queen of the Ethiopians. This Ethiopian he was in charge of all of her treasure so he was not an insignificant man.
He was a man with great responsibility and he had come to Jerusalem to worship and he was returning, seated in his chariot and was reading the prophet Isaiah, could you just don't look at me just a second. Everybody went to Jerusalem to worship church was the kind of thing that you did you ever been around someone who just wonderful people, churches, that's what we do we we go to church. Bob met many people that say you know that's the way I was born and raised by the way, from the age of six I fell into that category. That's what we did. You know it's the right thing to do go to church this man went he went to the temple.
This was what you did. Look what happened here so he was returning seated in these charts and he was reading this word member. We are instructed by his word he was reading specifically the prophet Isaiah, and the spirit said to Philip Glover enjoying this chariot so Philip ran to him and hurting reading Isaiah the prophet, and so for the boss him. Do you understand what you're reading. And he said how can I unless someone guides me so he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.
Now the passage of Scripture that he was reading was this one like a sheep he was led to the slaughter like a lamb before it sure is silent, so he opens not his mouth. In his humiliation. Justice was denied him who can describe his generation for his life is taken away from the earth.
By the way, you can read that yourself. It's in Isaiah 53 and verse seven and eight, Isaiah 53 and verse eight Mennonites of this man. The Ethiopian eunuch in East charity was just sitting there riding along coming back from Jerusalem. He'd been in worship. He did the right thing and he opened the Scriptures and he was reading Isaiah 53 Philip jumps into his chair and seized him.
Do you know you understand all that peace it will. How can I know I don't understand this.
Sorry I've somebody doesn't tell me how my supposed to understand these things verse 34.
So the eunuch said to Philip about whom are skewed as the prophet say this about himself or about someone else. Then Philip opened his mouth and beginning with this Scripture. He told him the good news about the Lord Jesus, and as they were going along the road, they came to some water in the eunuch said, see, here is water.
What prevents me from being baptized, by the way of you being baptized. You need to be all help you will help you.
That's why we hear we fact we going to have a baptismal service right at the end of this time of worship. What prevents me from being baptized, say, come onto the chair to stop. They both went down into the water. Philip and the eunuch and he baptized and then they came back up out of the water. That's biblical baptism. Baptism by immersion. That's what Jesus did. He went down under the water.
The water closed over him like death closes all of us over Jesus.
Jesus was put in the grave, and he died completely. But he didn't stay under the water, because God raised him up to walk in newness of life. He brought him back from the grave. He conquered death, he defeated the so when you give your heart to Jesus baptism is exactly that.
It's a picture that's why we've got to do what Jesus told us to do when you get into the water you go under the water. I or another person would take to put you under the war. The water close symbolizing identifying with the dead burial and then the resurrection raised up we sold at the beginning of our worship today with Rosa. What a beautiful picture when incredible picture.
It's the most amazing celebration is exactly what happened. You so when they came up out of the water. The spirit of the Lord carried Philip away. The eunuch saw him no more went on his way rejoicing. And of course they intersected later on wanted to speak to you little bit about obedient courage and and here's the reason why want to speak to us because many of us have seen Jesus. We we've seen him at work. Many of us we've we've seen him.
I've seen Jesus I want you to know that I have seen him obscene. The Lord Jesus, I see him in you. I want you to listen to something that happened to me. I'm just going to share a personal story because it happened right here in the city and if you haven't heard the story. I just going to remind some of the wonderful story this was the Monday off to my first Sunday with you. So we talking a long time ago I was brand-new I didn't even know where Walmart was in our city had no clue in my office here at the church was just boxes all over the place brand-new. My wife and I now three younger children and just on said God's cold moved here from the great city of New Orleans, Louisiana, and you roll just hearing my Louisiana accent for the first time and I walked into my office on Monday morning and the next minute one of the most dearest precious man I've ever met walked into my office.
He's name is Bill Adams and he is sitting right there. Well, boo Adams walked in to my office negotiating all the boxes just came to say hello and welcome any walked over, took me by the hand he said Dr. Wilton in his wonderful southern accent.
So glad you're here.
And by the way Foster would you pray with us for a certain gentleman. I said well you are asking me to pray a man of my caliber for someone who is. He said Willy's name is Poppa Sam I said really would tell me about this man. He said well if you open up blind, the curtain of your office and you look across town on St. John's you see little breakfast place down. They call Poppa San Austin yeah I see that over the said will Amanda learns that he's affectionately known as Poppa Sam and he said you know he someone well known, but he he doesn't know Jesus is no relationship with Jesus we been praying for him for youth person for years and for years that he would give his heart to Jesus now want to just tell you something folks. I wish that I could tell you that this was natural to me but God told me a lesson on the first day that I was privileged to be loved by you. I can't explain it to. But I turn and I say dim brother will really you been praying for him for how easy it all. Years and years and years. I said will come on let's go. What we went marching out of my office all the way down the elevator across the parking lot up and down markers down the sign John.
There was no bonnet park so nothing else was there was just Bush and dense jungle and everything else. Back in those days I just went down then just walked into this place. As we got to the door. Blue turned to me and he said now notwithstanding Sam is a fine man.
He don't Black preachers + thank you very much. Thanks for telling me that you know this is like inviting me to have a personal conversation with a rock while her general I mean this is getting worse and worse will we walked in there and you will remember Bo he was standing right there at the doorway and as my memory serves me. He was a big man and he had on these Connor over rolltop things in the 80s fingers in the straps and Bill C said this is our new pasta that's I can only tell you God had something to do this because I looked at this man never made them before.
Didn't I am.
I've never been into that place and I say dim. Mr. Rhodes could we meet somewhere privately he looked splattered looked down at me. He said sure over here. I do this I can't explain it to you. It's like I just woke strike pasta and went into his office. I sat in his chair and invited him to sit down. When he sat down, I turned to him I didn't know what to say what you say and I turned to him and I said to him, Sam, would you like to give your heart to Jesus.
He looked at me, began to seemingly looked like he was tearing up and he said I sure new preacher. I didn't know what to do I reached into my jacket pocket I was looking for notice what was my next point to where do I go which is the next verse, how my going to say this property. I looked over and Bill Adams us and who I am in blue and Bill say to me while I am in back to you. And I said will aiming to you, and I am in back and we wind a man backing and forth and finally I didn't know what to say and we were all standing there so the NRC team will Sam, why don't we just get down on our knees. You don't office a big man like that. I mean, he got down on his knees with us like this and I said to him, Sam wanted to just tell Jesus all about it folks you never ask a man who hasn't spent a lot of time praying just to have a public prayer, or so I thought, and he began to pray the most discombobulated mixed up, not in order didn't have any kind of it just began to flow from this man's heart and in between what he was saying were what I would call not entirely the most savory use of language that you would use overtly bad, but just conversational. Not the best, language, and it the first time it came out of his mouth.
I was like this. Have you ever seen a peeping preacher and the first time I heard blanketing blank come out. I went like this, he would say something and then I would cover because I was the poor side amen amen amen God would forgive him right there on the spot, and you know what, that's exactly what God was doing, I tell you and that precious man got up from his feet.
The tears were flowing and God was in the house and it was something I couldn't even begin to imagine.
And that Wednesday night we had a prayer service in the dining wall of First Baptist Church in Spartanburg and the place was full with people and I was the brand-new parts of this was my first Wednesday and I had to impress everybody at the church and all I did was at the end was to close it and I brought up on that rickety little sister open area down there in the dining hall and I leaned up against it and I thought now go to say something to impress these people and I said I said just before we closed tonight. I wonder if there's anyone here who would have a word of testimony to share with us and all of a sudden in the back road. Sam Roden stood up and started to come down and I went into a state of panic. I wanted to say to me, excuse me, you go back to your seat right now, this minute no in a Baptist Church comes for endlessly singing just as I am. I don't even hear the instrumentalist Steve Skinner is silent. They go back now, don't come don't come down, he came all the way up to the platform, and he leaned against the open and I knew he was going to do it and he limped on the pulpit and many of you were there and he said I just want to tell you I can't thank you enough for praying for me. I can't thank you enough for this preacher and Bill Adams come to my place because I gave my heart to Jesus and I want you to know I have never felt so blankety-blank good in all my life I came around I see Bill Adams did well. It wasn't too long off to that.
This beloved man lay on his death. Just before he died he said Bill Adams, blue want you to make sure you go back to that pasta and just say thank you because this lost screech of my life since I gave my heart to Jesus of being the most wonderful of my entire life said I want you to know something is a gave my heart to Jesus, I'm about to go to heaven and he did.
That's what happened here.
What happened here for. First of all, we can affirm that God does direct audit does, please forgive the interruption will be back with the rest of today's message from Dr. Wilton in just a moment the doctor done again wants me to remind you we are here to have a conversation with you. It's not just a presentation but a conversation in here as we wrap up on the last day of this unique 2020 year we want you know that we are available to pray with you at 8668 that's 866-899-WORD 9673. We love to be a part of what Dr. Don because your 2 AM friends. We also would be thrilled to help connect you with the local church. Something within two or three ZIP Codes of right where you are because we believe there is great power and effectiveness in being involved in local church and right now I know that may just mean virtually we love to help you plug I get more details on our email@example.com were giving us a call at 86689673 have acted today's message with Dr. Donald one point angel of the Lord came to this man said I want you to walk the parking lot going make a visit should walk over the street when you to sit down with that person that works with you.
God does direct. He always does that. Because it's the work of the Holy Spirit. God by his spirit goes ahead of us. You know that I know that I believe it. That's why you listening right now. That's why you hear God is directly since his work and people do obey. I'm looking at one incident, but I've often thought to myself, even though I couldn't of explained it like this. I think first of all, blue Adams obeyed God.
I'm not sure if you'd gone to boom it, he would've fully unpacked and understood why he came to my office on the first day I was here to come and tell me to pray for a man but God was directing and he was obeying all means just as simple as that.
And then when he told me I just had this urgency that I needed to go and just meet the man. There was a spirit movement in my heart the locks when performing out the windows when shaking.
I just knew it wasn't about me standing they will. Let's just there were a lot of things that would be wonderful it would be just as wonderful me disabled both.
Thank you. Let me join with you in praying for wonderful. Let's do that we should always do that but for me I had to translate my obedience into the courage to go and actually do something that really I don't think I really wanted to do things do line up when God is involved and people obey him all things are working together for the good of those that love God and to those who are whole. Those who are obedient to him.
When you look at this passage.
It's almost surreal.
He has this Ethiopian Jerusalem and the Temple and he's on a charity knees on a dusty road and because Philip and God brings all of these little circumstances and he brings them together for his divine purpose and have you found yourself many times which we all have inside you know I'm just I would never afford it but I'm just so glad that I went. This is not just let's go to the Temple in Jerusalem because it's the right thing to do all the proper thing to do. It is God engaged in your life, because he loves you. This is according to his purpose. Questions do matter, they do matter. It it just absolutely intrigues me when Philip gets there and he sees this man and then he lost the question and what simple question.
Do you understand what you're reading. What a great question. Questions do matter. The Bible does inspire you know Gary is in verse 32 in verse 33 reading from Psalm 53 and God's word stands because this is God's inherent infallible word. It is truth without error. This is truth in a world in which people are desperately seeking truth by trying to hundreds down. They looking everywhere to try to find out the relevancy. Why do I exist. What's my purpose. What I doing here where my going. This got to be more than lot. I need truth in my heart and the word of God inspires me, because God's word is absolute truth and God tells me who he is and how I can become reconciled to him even though I am a sinner separated from him this is good news.
This is good news. Very good news. Almost every bit of good news that great gift. Perhaps that you received a Christmas until it's open.
It's not as good as it could be a pre-would take just a moment and open your heart to our closing thoughts from our pastor and chief encourager Dr. Don Wilton are you ready to give your heart and life to the Lord Jesus Christ.
Why don't you pray this prayer with me right now. Dear God, I know that I miss and I know that Jesus died for me on the cross today, I repent of my sins and by faith I receive you into my in Jesus night, my friend. I would welcome you today into the family of God. This is exciting new welcome to the family got. I'm confident some of you prayed with Dr. Wilton. Moments ago you gave your life to Christ, maybe for the first time, maybe re-dedicating your life either way.
Dr. Don has resources he wants you to have you call this right now at 866899 word that's 866-899-WORD 9673 does provide these resources to you and speaking of resources on our website GVW online.org there are tremendous amount of right resources. Sources like this in your life you want to get $30 to The Encouraging Word this month you will receive the spirit of God within you a beautiful day to leather bound devotional written by interested pastors and leaders including Dr. Welton.
The last thing you read out letting Scripture daily prayers instrumental in the Louisiana college 899 does not need me will make a great Christmas and happy new year to you.
The Encouraging Word as we begin tomorrow. I hope you're getting your copy of that wonderful resource guide within call right now it 866-899-WORD or visit us online at tewonline.org.
Let's be apart of study God's word together with that Bible study firstname.lastname@example.org