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October 11, 2021 8:00 am
Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ in the middle of the night. Is that what you think about whatever is lovely, whatever is pure, whatever is right, all the good things all the that's what I think you spent all the time thinking about the circumstances you gave you the pain, the agony and the apprehension you have about something. It's going to happen in your life. You do this, we choose not to do this. I don't want to do this. I don't want to take refuge in the Lord. I don't want to dwell on these kind, so we don't choose to be. In fact we actually choose to be on memory, so when we are joining us today on this additional fellowship in the world with pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie. Join Pastor Bill Gebhardt. Now once again he shows us how God's word. Johnson wrote a book called the way of life. Any this quote in the book. He said at the center of God's own heart is a love for beauty and pleasure. He created all things for himself to enjoy and for creation did delight in him there is no delight beauty or pleasure outside of him, that can ever satisfy the cry of our own hearts. Last week I asked the question, are you happy and I spent some time saying that God is happy and is clear on the word of God that he is and he desires to have a happy people. And secondly, I guess if were honest with ourselves. All of us want to be happy.
It's the ultimate pursuit for everybody.
So God wants us happy, and we want to be happy then why are we happy to that to me is a very important question. Why aren't we happy. What I like to do is today is give you five reasons why believe were not happy. The very first want to be fine and Psalm 34 verse eight Psalm 34 verse eight just one verse. David wrote the Psalm and I might be a little bit more in the verse than you think.
Verse eight of Psalm 34 David writes O taste and see that the Lord is good. How blessed is the man who takes refuge in him is upset in the past. This is Hebrew poetry. They don't rhyme words they use two lines of the poem is called synonymous parallelism.
He wants to say the two thing and he says that I want to taste and see how good the Lord is. But there's a reason for it. He says that in the next part of the verse. He said how blessed is the man who takes refuge in them. If you remember last time I spent quite a bit of my sermon talking about the word blessed in Greek and in Hebrew. In Hebrew the word is scary. That's what he writes here and that word always means in the old and New Testament happy and I talked about why it's not translated that way and it's regrettable that it's not, but it's how happy is the man who takes refuge in him. But there's even more.
The verse than that, how happy is the man who takes refuge in him takes refuge.
That means you have to make a choice or something.
You have to choose to do. You have to take refuge in him. If I were saying the opposite I could say this how unhappy you are. If you don't take refuge in the Lord, especially when the circumstances of life are so difficult. We live in a cursed planet surrounded by sinful people pain and suffering a part of our lives as we lose our happiness because we don't choose to take refuge in God and that's always a choice when I was a student at Dallas seminary to the men that I studied under was Dr. Frydman with and Paul Dr. Paul Meyer thereto Christian psychiatrist and they ran to men with Meyer clinic in Dallas and as well as taught at the seminary level and up. They wrote a book called happiness is a choice and the book really dealt with the whole idea of depression.
But what they surmise from it all was that happiness is a choice that a person has to make, and what happens to us often even as believers is we don't make the choice we don't choose to be happy. I want to back that up by going to Philippians chapter 4 with me for a moment in the New Testament, Philippians 4 and verse eight of the book of Philippians is a book all about happiness. The whole books about joy and happiness.
That's why Paul wrote in the irony of it is a pause in prison. He's waiting to find out whether will be executed or not and he decides to write an epistle about being happy and an epistle about joy and so when it comes to the conclusion of this in verse eight he says this he said finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise dwell on these things, know what's interesting about that versus it covers about every good thing you can think of. I mean he does whatever's true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, good reputation excellence worthy of praise, but the key to that versus fun right at the end dwell. That's a choice you see that's a choice know what you do when life becomes difficult for you.
Is that what you do when you wake up in the middle of the night is that when you think about whatever is lovely, whatever is pure, whatever is right, all the good things all the that's what I think about what you spent all the time thinking about the circumstances I gave you the pain or the agony or the apprehension you have about something. It's going to happen in your life.
You see, we don't do this, we choose not to do this. I don't want to do this.
I don't want to take refuge in the Lord. I don't want to dwell on these kind of thing so we don't choose to be happy. In fact we actually choose to be unhappy and then we reap what we sow. When we are unhappy. Secondly, we also allow worry and sin to steal our happiness. They are both happiness thieves looking this kind of verse four of chapter 4, Philippians, there you see something very interesting. He says rejoice in the Lord always again I say rejoice!
The word or in Greek is he's all wound up about this. Be happy. I really want you to be happy. He then says his gentle spirit be known to all men.
The Lord is near. That's on the be happy about. By the way, the question is what you mean the Lord is near what it means two things.
One is he's near to you and to me even though I'm in prison and is also near to coming back so are you going to him. So let's be happy at least about that and then he says this be anxious for nothing, stop worrying shoes all through Scripture. Don't worry nieces began anxious for nothing.
So how many things can we be anxious about you. CME is an online anxious about everything, but I am anxious about some things and are some things you just have to be anxious about blessed know the word of God says one of God's is be anxious for nothing, I mean that's about as clear as something could be be anxious for nothing, he says, because worry is a happiness thief steals it and you know it and said why Randy Alcorn said this worry is the product, and I love this of high-stakes and low control. Think about that.
That's why we worry something is important and you and I don't have control and we don't have control.
We worry, but there's some things we need to remember when you talk about what is good and pure and right and all those things we should remember.
Think of this as a believer in Jesus Christ. One, he is already rescued us from eternal disaster. Your saved your sins are forgiven, Christ died for you. He's already your eternal disaster will never happen to you. So much to remember that when you start worrying about stuff.
Secondly, he is told us that the worst things that happened to you. Romans 828 return for good. That's his promise.
All things will work together for the good RC do it so your eternity is set never be judged by God and now go take the worst things that happen in your life in return for good. So what are you worried about you. She wears a worry come from.
Thirdly, every secular study will back this up virtually almost everything we worry about never happens and that amazing we worry. We worry.
We worry. We worry and then never happens instead of just being grateful and learning from it.
We just are worrying about something else.
Something else. Most of the back burner. The front burner.
Natural worry about there on in, I know the world's a tough place quite what's wrong with the world you what's not, I mean yeah we know it, death, disease, poverty, murder, abuse, war, broken relationships, addictions, exploitation all over the world and the world we live in a what's the worldview. How do you how do you solve that.
How does the world solve those things if you listen to the pundits in the world talk to basically save one of two ways. One is that you can fix it by giving people more education and you can fix it by throwing more resources that if people were more educated and useful more resources that it things a good better now. We spend trillions of dollars in educating and throwing resources at the problems of the world and in less you're in a spot that I'm not are they going away or not those things getting better. They're not using what's the problem with the world is a simple simple answer. Sin that's the problem. The problem of the world of sin and its consequences. That's the problem that the world has Stephen sure knocked the Puritan writer said.
He said though the fall be the cause of all of our misery yet recognizing it is the first step toward our happiness. He's right. That's the first step because God has a solution for said you see he calls it forgiveness. God solution to sin is forgiveness and if you think about it, it's almost ironic because God is the most holy being that exist and at he's the one that's willing to forgive sin how much all of it. How long forever.
You see to what degree consistently over and over and over again. He said I'll forgive. He said that's the way I'll solve this now for us. Another way you can make yourself unhappy or miserable is who you are a sinful person you're not God, and so many of us will not forgive you want to still happiness be unforgiving because if you are, you will be happy once you become unforgiving, you begin to sow a seed in your soul called bitterness and just like a cancer, an aggressive form of cancer he just continues to grow and then you get really, really bitter and it steals all your happiness. I remember years ago reading a study and they dealt with people really from their point of view was secular, happy, and people really bitter and went to the people, bitter, and they said you know and nice way. Why do so bitter and and they said well you understand how people hurt me in the past and it could be your parents could be your mom and dad I can be siblings. It could be a system they could be cut people in school all kinds of ex-spouse people hurt me and that's why I'm so bitter.
Then they decide to interview all the people that are happy and asked him about their past and guess what, by and large it was identical same past their people alert them. They had the same experiences wasn't like they were void of those issues.
They chose not to become better bitterness can do that to us.
That's what happens to us, we allow this worry and we allow this sin also to kill our happiness. Thirdly, we believe Satan's lies about happiness. We believe them to shame. But we do go with me to Genesis chapter 3 for a moment. Genesis chapter 3 verse one Moses writes, as he says now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made a he's crappy.
We know that and he goes up to the woman melt. Let's get the back right window. Adam and Eve live right now. Off the top your head is a nice place and that's a nice it's Edenic right we use that word. It's a Wonderful Pl., God comes and walks with them in the garden. There's no bad world out there. There's nothing but goodness, and in that world. All the guy did to them is he allowed him total freedom, except he gave them a one commandment dispensation just one and by the way, is it you can eat of any tree in the garden in this one. I've told you this. There's nothing special about that tree.
It wasn't like they they were all green, but this one was gold is not like that. It's just he said you need of any tree. I think it was the same as all the others, except that tree. That's the only one you can eat a one commandment dispensation and if you just listen to what I'm saying you'll be happy forever. Sounds like a good deal now here comes Satan or the serpent and he says, indeed, has God said, you shall not eat from any tree of the garden is questioning what God said. By the way it always works this way and then it says the woman said him from the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden God said, you shall not eat it or touch it or you'll die.
I don't think he said touch it, but she got it that way. But there's the one commandment the serpent said to the woman you will surely shall not die. Let me paraphrase, for God knows that the day you eat it your eyes will be open and you will be happy yeah that's wrong.
That's the temptation for it's always the temptation is always the same, has God said that's not really true. Think of. Think of the major areas in our culture of sinfulness you think of sex and drugs in power and stuff all those kinds of things we we followed all kinds of temptations.
That's why the book of Ecclesiastes was written. Solomon said you know everything that you think will make you happy on temporal basis.
I did all by the way I did in the way you could never do it. I did it to the nth degree in every area. I did it is my conclusion. It's all vanity. It didn't produce happiness at all. It never did what it said it would melt. Just think what happens to us. We live in a culture by the way where we have taken sexual perversion to serve new heights and the reason is why why would people do that because they want to be want happy. This is going to make me happy. Please understand something this evening then sex no God. Any city, and this is the way it's going to work is a wonderful thing to make you happy and is between a man and a woman in the context of marriage.
You don't have it before you don't have it with other people. The whole idea of it is in a context. So what Satan say I think about the context be really happy to be happy.
That's gonna make you happy and we do it over and over again.
I just remember woman told me once she was having an affair with her husband and she said look, God wants me happy. And this makes me happy that she was in counseling because everyone was so miserable.
But she said God wants me to be happy to see what ends up happening you buy into that nothing of our culture. When you start reading the national statistics in America of sexually transmitted diseases, especially among young people. It's startling never hear on the news.
They don't talk about it now. Do you think all these young people such a transmitted diseases makes him happy. Just happy to do this or not. You see, you take something and then you make it worse. You just simply say no has got to adapt. That's not the case at all.
And that's what he does in every single area of our lives and so we end up in courtrooms and we end up in rehab centers. We end up in therapy.
We end up in bankruptcy because I thought it made me happy.
I spent money I never heard I got it made me happy bankruptcies unhappy. Sin will never produce lasting happiness in anyone's life.
It'll always be temporal and yet we fall for it over and over again we choose not to be happy. We allow worry and sin to steal our happiness. We believe Satan's lies about happiness in this. What happens often, the Christians we feel guilty about the things that God is putting our lives to make us happy and so would become unhappy because we believe somehow that's wrong. I want to go with me to first Timothy chapter 6, first Timothy chapter 6 and verse 17. This area has had enormous effect over the church throughout the centuries it. It's the kind of thinking that because the whole monastic. Remember, used to go to monasteries separate yourself from everything in the world were some very uncomfortable garments eat dried bread and drink water be isolated and that'll make you happy. Just the thought of it does make you happy but people thought it would make you happy because you don't want, you can get happiness. Many of the things God gives you. That's not true to me show you this, verse 17 he said instruct those who are rich in this present world. These are rich people in the church. He said I want you to instruct those who are rich in this present world.
We can't be rich and happy Metro you can be rich and happy just like you to be porn happy. You can be rich and happy's but I want to instruct those who are rich in this present world.
First, not to be conceited while rich people are never conceited darling, not rich people.
This temptation there is a word conceited means do they get their significance for me which I think are better than other people because they have money, there's a real temptation with getting your significance from the well. He said no don't do that. Don't get your significance from being rich and then he says secondly or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches.
That's her security don't think you get your significance in your security from having money now. None of us would ever fall for that would bring. I mean is another hokey we don't get any security for money.
We have more money. You don't want to face your retirement years.
Read our papers and stuff you want official retirement years. Of all things. The worst thing you could face a without enough money and if you read the articles. I kept thinking I'll never have that kind of money I mean is never gonna happen. I'll never have that kind of money that I thought remember what all the people I grew up with while factory workers. My dad was all my neighbors work they all retired and they made it they said you can't make it a measure of all this money so we try to make sure bathroom number on the radio ministry of fellowship in the world. If you ever miss one of our broadcast or maybe you dislike of the sum of the method one more time. Remember, you can Google a great website called one. Please.com that's one place.com and you can listen the fellowship and the word online event website you will find on with today's broadcast but also many of her previous audio program at Fellowship in the Word. We are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible with 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 the 100th support for ministry can be centered Fellowship in the Word. 4600 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie 7006 if you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format that is of the sermon, the pastor will deliver during a Sunday morning service of fellowship monitored visit our website FVC Nola.org that FVC and oh LA not owe Argie in our website you will find hundreds of pastoral sermon you can browse through our sermon archives to find sermon series are looking you can search by title. Once you find the messenger looking for. You can listen online or if you prefer, you can download the sermon and listen at your anchoring and remember all this absolutely free of charge.
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