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June 14, 2021 8:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ.asking how do we know the will of God for life's tough decisions is not a biblical question God does not encourage us to ask the question, and even more significantly, God gives us no answer. The Bible silence on this. Please understand I'm not God is sovereign over everything.
So I make a decision on my God, sometimes." Endorse close windows of yes me. That's what he does because he saw joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana Pastor Bill Gebhardt now was once again he shows us how God's word meets our work next to 22 Wednesdays to watch what he said men of Israel, listen to these words. Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through him in your midst, just as you yourselves know okay start my Jesus how great Jesus was when he was on earth. Then he says this man. No watch delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, so according to this verse.
Why was Jesus turned over delivered over to be crucified. Why God created you see, I say often when Jesus was born in Bethlehem. Mary had a Little Lamb. In other words, he was only born to die and he did. You see that's why John the Baptist said, behold the Lamb of God takes away the sins of the world how is going to go to the cross you see is that part of God's creative well yes, that was it right from the beginning on the system. He said that's my degree to Worldwatch. He then says the predetermined plan informed foreknowledge of God, you now to across by the hands of godless men and put them to death who killed Jesus godless men evil men, the date on your own will decide to kill him.
Yes, but notice is a decree of well and there's an individual will hear is on verse 24 and suspect God raised him up again, putting an end to the agony of death since it was impossible for him to be held in his power the death and burial and resurrection of Christ is our hope, because Christ was raised to a newness of life. So can you and I be raised to the newness of life are hopeless on this. It all works out in the very very were away, but I wanted to see how this works and works in such an easy way there things of God decrees that doesn't mean one you and I are less responsible. We often do we talk about the will of God is terrible, horrible things happen and then we say that God did get God. Now if you read in the book of James. James says that God says I cannot even tempt someone to sin. Now I'm not can I not sin, but I can even tempt someone to sin is not God just the enemy, Satan, and the temptations like he did with Christ in Matthew four there's there's temptation accounts. But that's not from God. You see, and we end up getting kinda mixed up in this small child is accosted and kidnapped and then murdered and left in a ditch somewhere and use it.that was God the dad at the will of God do that God sovereign over that now talk about somebody next week. But God didn't do that. See evil did that man did that sin did that God does not usurp your CD does not usurp our will.
So secondly, God has a permissive will, under his creative well. We also has a permissive will, so that this wagon illustrates like this is God's will for you not to sin or how do you think I want you to sin, all constantly.
It's God's will write how many times he told us don't do that okay so it's God's will that we don't sin do you wait a minute, is God's will you get stop God's will see how this works. He has a permissive will, he allows that now he sovereign over and will talk like that again next time.
But the idea behind it is that's the way this works.
Let me illustrate. Go with me to second Peter chapter 3, second Peter chapter 3 of the first seven verses is Peter is dealing with trying to encourage believers and he says look, I know you guys are getting mocked and reason are getting mocked as the early church just like the church today believes the Lord's coming back. They believe the Lord's coming back and I believe that's part of God's decree will the Lord's coming back, but the people in which they were witnessing lap Adam and mocked him, they said of the Lord's coming back. Where is he you said is coming back when I was see him mother weight sending and having the day you could ever friend to tell you the same thing USACE coming back. He hasn't been back for a long time. While this verse will help you notice what he says in verse eight he said do not this one fact escape your notice.
Beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years and a thousand years is like one day. Okay, so how long is the Lord waited so far two days, two days somebody such a hurry. He sees the Lord is eternal. Recent knots 2000 years is not back yet not two days the Lord then he says this. The Lord is not slow about his promise, he's not slow to fulfill his creative will is not slow about.
He said, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you wisely patient with men next verse, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance wisely waiting. He wants mankind to come to repentance, to be saved.
X-rays waiting in that first Timothy two, Paul writes to Timothy, God desires that all men be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth now question is everybody saving for God but God desires. That's God's will.
God wants everyone to get saved. Why are they getting saved, you get stop God's will. You can see, God created in you and me free will. You see there's a free will that you and I have so we know not everyone is going to be saved, but it's not because it's not God's will because it's not there will they don't want to believe it in a have free will. God doesn't course your free will or mine. Now there are consequences to willful decisions we make on our own. I don't deny that there's a terrible but the ideas God allows us to have our all make our own choices in this life know one of the verses that got us in so much trouble understanding the will of God in choices is found in Proverbs 3 and him and explain this in just a minute. It's all because of a bad translation but it's go to Proverbs chapter 3 Solomon writing. He starts out and he says my son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments.
Solomon is trying to teach his son and us. One thing wisdom is trying to say out. You need to live life wisely. In fact, he says if you live life wisely. You will be infinitely better off than if you live life like a fool that we kinda know that knowing but most of the problems. By the way that people have in their lives and the despair they have is always because of the choices they made. They made choices they reap what they so another life's a mess. It's always interesting that when people find our lives like that. They always victimize themselves like there was nothing I could do about it had nothing to do with any choices I made. It just happened to me, that's not true. So he goes on.
He says this not remember this is wisdom literature and I'll explain in a minute for length of days and years of life and peace. They will add to you. You live wisely, you're going to live longer and Happy's November what I've said about Jewish wisdom literature. It's a principal is not a promise. Let me ask you, did Jesus live wisely. Okay. Did you have a long life.
No see. That's it. This is Annette this is just like train up a child in a way she's going. He's old will not depart from it. I remedy that all the time with Christian parents and say we did that so they can't they can't walk away from it so I can't say what the Bible says all the Bible says that's the principle you see that's not a promise. Why is it not a promise because your kids have free will.
They can decide to live whatever way they want.
You train them up in the right way by way and that the process of parenting. How many times you've ever had a teenager and you say this to them.
How many times have I told you apparently not enough.
You see, no I told you you're going to do that. No one, not I have free will. I connect the way I want.
So he says they will have long days. Peace. He said do not let kindness and truth. He said leave you my number on your neck live based on truth and kindness live that way she had to be a much better way for you to live. He says you know, write them on the tablet of your heart. He said so you will find favor in good repute in the sight of God and man. If you live a really good life you'll have first know you will have a good relationship with God and secondly normally you have a good relationship with men. Question can you live rightly before God and men will like you. Yes, this is a principal see this is the promise of God. This is the principle of God and then he says this we all know this verse is one of our favorite in the book of Proverbs trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and a new American Standard, and he will make your paths smooth and he will make your paths smooth King James version says, and he shall direct thy paths. There is where the problem comes from and save to mistake see there's a difference between him making your paths smooth and him directing you. You see I'm here Lord left the right left.
Okay I'm here right right now go down go up on them till you make every step in your life. That's all is not scriptural at all. He will make your paths smooth goose walking was one of the great Old Testament Hebrew scholars in the last hundred years. He writes this he said all of us had the shock of discovering that a favorite verse in the King James version was inaccurate.
I recall the astonishment as one of the committee members assigned to translate the book of Proverbs for the new international version when he discovered the Proverbs 3, five and six had nothing to say about guidance when confronted with linguistic data. He had to admit reluctantly that the verse more properly should read and he will make your paths smooth and other work to make your life better.
Robert, what goes on and says the true intent of Proverbs 3, five and six is said I set forth a pattern that the believer should follow to experience true success in life. A pattern where he demonstrates his trust and obedience to God by following the directions of God's moral will is always what God wants from you if you want know what's God's will is relational with him. We always want to make it vocational, locational, it's relational missing these verses. First Peter 215 for this is the will of God, that by doing good. You should put the silence ignorance of foolish people. This is the will of God for you to do good.
First Thessalonians 5 rejoice always pray continually give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
There's God's will, God's will was clear. You should rejoice and pray and give thanks in all circumstances. First Thessalonians 4 it's God's will that you should be sanctified, set apart from the world they said earlier, Ephesians 5. Be very careful in how you live not as unwise but wise. Do not be foolish, you need understand what the will of God is what is the will of God. Well that Ephesians passage. The next thing he tells us right after that person. Five says be filled with the spirit of God's God's will for you be controlled by the spirit of God.
That's God's will for all of us want to know his will for you personally is be controlled by the spirit of God. We are also the love God and people. Jesus made it clear love the Lord your God with all your heart mind soul and strength in your neighbor as yourself. That's God's will for you see we never think about it that way. We always want to think about it about something else choice or decision were making all those imperative mood commands in the New Testament are God's will for you and me and that's what I should be pretty occupied about, but so often we think about the will of God. We think about in a very different way than Haddon Robinson wrote a book called decision-making by the book and Dr. Robinson says this we are shocked when we turn to the Bible and discover that asking the question, how do we know the will of God for life's tough decisions is not a biblical question God does not encourage us to ask the question, and even more significantly, God gives us no answer. The Bible silence almost shouts at us.
Please understand I'm not saying God is sovereign over everything.
So when I make a decision on my own. There's God sometimes closed doors open doors close Windows open windows yes I mean that's what he does because he sovereign that that that is not a problem at all.
When I was graduating from the Dallas seminary. Velma and I decide where would we want to be served to serve the Lord. And so we both decided that we would go serve the Lord anywhere in the north anywhere. We didn't care where we want to go north now. The reason for it was Dallas was known still whispered like of the buckle of the Bible belt I would want to be in the Bible we did want to be in the Bible about all we want to be like where we came from, where morning claimed then Christians are pretty rare and that if the fact that born-again Christianity's countercultural, we want to go somewhere like that and that was so all the applications we sent out were all to the north, then one particular was always a Monday that I went on to the seminary you go down to the seminaries by Twenty Mile Dr. and then April, when the go student union in this church.
As you can sign up and that all the churches that I had signed up for. Up till then in the north wall for pulpit ministry. They were all designed for me to go to pulpit. I was advised to do that by the professors don't go on to staff well there was only one church that was up there and it said Fellowship Bible church retiree Louisiana and I never heard them entirely. I do know retiree was in Shreveport for work once I never heard of the place you know it was for the associate pastor's job but I thought I drove 20 miles to get you see. And so what I do. I wrote my name down here I am in need. But think about this from another point of view how God some of the work we did want to go into the Bible, but we wanted to go somewhere where the gospel was countercultural in New Orleans is below the belt.
Nobody would call New Orleans Bible Belt I mean nobody so was exactly what we want and it's just have to be the weather is better I mean. But the point of this, God sovereignly worked in that situation.
We still made our own decision. But God's sovereignty does get involved in helping us with those that's different than having this idea about a bull's-eye that we have to hit. So then how do we make a decision one verse I want to give you the media. Remember to help you make the decision go with me to Psalm 37 in the Old Testament. Psalm 37 and I want to look at verses three and four David's writing this in verse three. David says this trust in the Lord and do good as I God's will for you and me.
Yes I we just seen in the New Testament trust in the Lord and do good, dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. I want to be a faithful servant of the Lord everything the New Testament tells us over and over again Jesus said on the vine near the branches you need to do what abided me if you abide in me and I am biting you. You will bear much fruit, but apart from me you can do nothing what what see me stay close to me everything about God's will in our life is born-again Christians. Our relationship with God. Every bit of it.
That's God's will. Now that's what David tells is this a thousand years before Christ.
Then he says this in verse four. Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.
If you delight yourself in the Lord you decide.
See it your choice what you want to go she has at work such an important thing, seek and you can use it as a gimmick against L pretend I delight myself in the Lord is the upper 10 then I'll make my own choices. Delight yourself in the Lord. You can't fake that in the choice of party B port, but if you delight yourself in the Lord who give the desire of your heart. Again, I talked earlier about Haddon Robinson, who is one of the great professors of homiletics are preaching that I have ever read her hours got to listen to and Dr. Robinson was recruiting a good Christian psychiatrist named Paul Meyer and Paul Meyer was a Trinity seminary up in the Chicago area and the one in the come here and meet a counseling department at Dallas seminary seafood to Chicago and he was having dinner with them and Paul. Paul told the story, not Haddon. Paul said Mike I said to Dr. Robinson and I said this is been really hard from my wife and I were really struggling with this and he said what he means is we we just don't know whether God wants us here in Chicago wants us in Dallas. He said had laughed at me. He just laughed at me.
He said God doesn't care if you're in Chicago or Dallas. That's up to you. He said God only cares how faithful you are to him about this. You decide where you want to go that's your choice, and he subsumes he told me other than my wife and we both said dollars exhibit C. He was frozen because I don't want to miss the target. Delight yourself in the Lord to give you the desires of your heart. This is your responsibility and mine.
So whenever we live in accordance with God's will. And whenever we live a godly life and it comes to a choice in your life do choose what you want to see you choose what you want. If your choices and good God's sovereignty will usually help you, and you may say, I thought this was a great decision but then something will come up and you can't kill divert you, but the choice of the responsibility isn't trying to seek out the wisdom or the exact perfect target of God's will. That's a decision that God's given you and given me to make delight yourself in the Lord who give you the desires of your heart spring father so often we get ourselves in this such a difficult place were seeking out the perfect will of God for every choice we make in our lives and were paranoid about it, we become fearful and how do I know it's the right choice how I know this is the right job. How I know this is the right person want to know when we go, but father if we cultivate what careers you will our relationship with you that we trust and obey what you have asked us to do that, we remain controlled by your spirit and is close to you as we possibly can. Your word tells us, simply them. You bequeathed to us the desires of our heart and we make the choice and we trust yourself. There, that's with God should pastor broke apart on the radio ministry of fellowship Lord, if you ever missed one of our broadcast or maybe you dislike of the sum of the method one more time. Remember that you can Google a great website called one place.com that's one place.com and you can listen the fellowship and the word online at that website you will find on with today's broadcast but also many of her previous audio programs as well at Fellowship in the Word. We are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible. We ask all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help his radio ministry continuous broadcast on this radio station by supporting us monthly with just a one-time gift support for ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word.
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