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September 21, 2022 4:00 am
If you doubt and fear are anxious and worried question whether God can perform his work. You have denied them the glory that is due his name is worthy to be trusted. He can do what he says he will ominous on your test results when it looks like you could or when you actually do lose your job how you respond in a way that shows your trusting in the one who is always in control, who always deserves your trust John MacArthur's helping you think biblically about your trials in his current series here on grace do you stay here for the next installment of his study how to live for God's glory and out with the lesson here is John. We were saved to bring glory to the Lord.
There are some very practical ways in which we accomplish that by his power, we glorify the Lord by aiming our life at that purpose. First Corinthians 1031 says whatever you do, whether you eat or drink, do all to the glory of God the most mundane and simplest thing that we do in life is to be done to God's glory as well as the most spiritual in the most devout expression of Christian faith and truth. Everything in our lives is to be aimed at the glory of God and that means we prefer him in his kingdom above everything else were content to do his will matter what the price we suffer when he suffers, and we are content to be outdone by others as long as he receives the glory. And then secondly, we glorify God by confessing sin when we confess our sin take responsibility for our evil, our wickedness are violation of God's law. Our disobedience when we take responsibility for that. And God chastens us then he appears rightly to be just and holy do what is to be done before a holy God should indeed have a holy reaction against sin and if he chooses not to chase them but to be gracious. Then he receives glory for being gracious to one who is so utterly unworthy, so we glorify God by aiming our life at that focus and we glorify God by confessing, let's move to another point we glorify God by trusting him. We glorify God by trusting him. If indeed in our lives we are to glorify God, moving from one level of glory to the next, becoming more and more like the very one we worship the God we adore revealed to us in the face of Jesus Christ.
Then were going to bring him glory when we trust him. We honor him by trusting him. It's a very simple principle if if I say that I respect my father.
If I say that I respect and honor and highly regard my mother and demonstrating the way I live that I have no regard for their word that I don't trust what they say. Then you can question the legitimacy of my respect. If on the other hand, I have tremendous trust in my parents if I have tremendous trust in their integrity and in their wisdom and their decisions and their leadership in my life and I follow that leadership then I am affirming my trust without any equivocation. Same thing is true and the Christians experience. If we say God is worthy to be believed in. He is worthy to be trusted and we demonstrate that we don't trust them question what he does doubt and fear in the dismay, and sometimes sorrow and worry and anxiety characterize our lives, then people should have a right to say what if you trust God so much. Why do you live in doubt. Why do you live in fear while you live in anxiety.
If God is who you say is, shouldn't he be trusted. So again, we will bring honor to God by our trust, we will truly say that we see the glory of God. When we trust God, let me give an illustration of that is redone in each case turned Romans chapter 4, and as we've said all along, there are a number of the illustrations of each of these points and try to pick out one that is some way or other unforgettable and in Romans chapter 4 we come across the wonderful account reiterated of Abraham and Sarah and the promise and the fulfillment of the birth of Isaac.
Now you remember the story I think that God had promised to Abraham that he would have a seed in fact is a progeny would be so prolific that they could be numbered according to Genesis chapter 12 as the stars of the heavens or the sands of the sea.
We now know that there is probably some equality in those two maybe there are as many stellar bodies as there are grains of sand far more vast than we can ever imagine the uncountable stars in the uncountable grains of sand on the seas of the world were what the Lord selected to illustrate the vastness of the seed that would come from the loins of Abraham. God made that promise. However by the time Abraham reached 100 years of age. They had absolutely no children. Sarah's womb was dead and they had no fulfillment of the promise. But in spite of that, I want you look at Romans chapter 4 and verse 18. This is what it says about Abraham in hope against hope and hope which made no sense from a human perspective. He believed he believed in order that he might become a father of many nations, according to that which had been spoken, so shall your descendents be. When it made no sense to believe he believed women made no sense to hope he hoped. In fact, in verse 17 he believed, even God, who gives life to the dead could call into being that which doesn't exist, but God had the power to do what seemed humanly impossible.
He believed that if God said you're going to have descendents that he would have descendents in verse 19 says, without becoming weak in faith. He contemplated his own body. Now as good as dead since he was about 100 years old and the deadness of Sarah's womb from a human perspective, it just was not to happen. Yet, with respect to the promise of God.
Verse 20 says he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith and what did that do giving what glory God and being fully assured verse 21 says that what he promised he was able also to perform, therefore, that faith was reckoned to him as righteousness. It was that very faith in God that saved him as faith always saves it saved Abraham.
He believed God for that which was humanly impossible. He was strong in faith and gave glory to God. You see, unbelief is an affront to God for God to make a promise and you not to believe it is to question his character is the Bible says, for example, as a dozen flippy is for my God shall supply all your need. You believe it or do you worry about your need. If Jesus said, take no thought for what you shall eat or drink because the father in heaven who takes care of the birds of the field close birds of the air rather enclose the lilies of the field in the grass promises to take care of you. Don't you think you'll do it and if the Scripture says, inspired by the Holy Spirit that the never will, trial in your life. It is more than you can bear. Do you believe it in the Scripture says that in the midst of that seemingly unbearable trial. There will always be a way of escape. Do you believe it because if you don't, and if you doubt and fear and are anxious and worried question whether God can perform his word. You have denied them the glory that is due his name is worthy to be trusted. He can do what he says he will do what he promised in unbelief questions. His integrity and that doesn't bring you minor anymore than questioning somebody's integrity brings them honor it brings them dishonor the question anyone's integrity and how foolish to question the integrity that the ability the power and the honesty of God. Listen to first John 510 middle of the verse. The one it is not believe God has made him a liar, the one who does not believe God has made him a liar you are treating God as if he lied. Lord says he's going to meet your needs. He's going to lead you through all the trials and temptations of life. All the tribulations and bring you to glory the says are never going to be anything that's more than you can bear and will always be a path through to triumph and victory promise is going to be there as a friend sticking closer than a brother is going to supply all your need. Every resource of heaven is at your disposal, including the angels which are sent to minister to the saints, as Hebrews 114 says all the promises of God are ours because they're all yes in Jesus Christ to his hours and we greatly dishonor God. When we claim to believe in him, and yet we can't cope with life and we can't solve our problems. We can't rest confidently and assuredly in his wisdom and his power effect where stealing is glory. Sure, life is full of troubles, but our God is beyond all of those is no sense in fearing Daniel three chapter 3 and verse 13 and it's it's back to this experience with the three young men were thrown in the fiery furnace known as Shadrach me shack and Abednego that of course I was there Chaldean names their Hebrew names are Hannah Anaya, Mischa AL and Azariah, but there Chaldean's part of the brainwashing process gave them names that were Chaldean names which bore as a part of the name. The name of the Chaldean gods false gods to try to lure them into idolatry. But you remember the story of these three young men because you remember that everybody was required to bow down to the king. Anybody didn't bow down to the king was going to pay with his life and that is precisely what happened. You remember these men are mentioned there in chapter 2 verse 17. Hannah and I have Michelle and Azariah, by the time you get into chapter 3. They're called in verse 16, Shadrach me shack and Abednego and when they are told the bow down to the king.
They refused to do that verse 15 says if you don't worship you're going to be immediately cast into the midst of a furnace of blazing fire, and then he says does Nebuchadnezzar what God is there who can deliver you out of my hands thought himself to be more powerful than the Hebrew God and it's understandable since the Babylonians had managed to conquer the Hebrews they describe their conquering powers to their own deity and assume that if the Hebrews, God couldn't defend them against the gods of the Babylonians that therefore the gods of the Babylonians were more powerful and that he Nebuchadnezzar was perhaps the most powerful of all. Even though he was a man he saw himself as some kind of deity.
Well, he said, you either bow down to Muriel, throw you in the fire. Verse 16 Shadrach me shack and Abednego answered and said to the king, though Nebuchadnezzar we do not need to give you an answer concerning this will not to say anything to you. If so be our God.
Verse 17 whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire, and he will deliver us out of your hand. Okay now that is tremendous faith. Somebody asked you in a simple question. In the normal course of life. If you believe God could deliver you out of any situation probably say yes, but it might be a little different. If you're standing on the edge of the fiery furnace feeling the heat and breathing the smoke and the flames as they were, but it never cause their faith. The waiver one bit verse 18, they added, even if he doesn't let it be known to you. Okay were not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you've set up what did they mean I think that's an evidence they believe in the power of God to raise the dead. Even if God doesn't protect us from the fire. He'll take us out the other side. I believe they were so confident in God's power and God's promise. The weather was in life or death. They knew God would deliver them when Nebuchadnezzar was so enraged by that. In verse 19 was filled with wrath's facial expression was altered. He screwed up his face in fury answered by giving orders to heat the furnace seven times more than it was usually heated and he commanded certain valiant warriors who were in his army to tie up Shadrach me shack and Abednego I guess he expected a fight. He didn't get one, nor the cast them into the furnace of blazing fire in these men were tied up in their garments, their coats, their caps and their other clothes and cast into the midst of the furnace of blazing fire there just bundled up and just heaved into this fire. For this reason, because the king's command was urgent in the furnace of been an extremely hot, the flame of the fire slew. Those men who carried up Shadrach me shack and Abednego it was so hot that it burned the guys who got near enough to throw them in, but these three men, Shadrach me shack and Abednego fill in the midst of the furnace of blazing fire still tied up in Nebuchadnezzar the king was astounded and stood up in haste he responded and said it was high officials, was it not three men we cast into the midst of the fire. The answered and said to the king, certainly okay.
He answered and said look I see four men loosed and walking about in the midst of the fire without harm and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods. Most Bible commentators would believe that the Lord Jesus Christ.
The second member of the Trinity in a pre-incarnate appearance came and attended to these three wonderfully faithful men, Nebuchadnezzar came near the door.
The furnace of blazing fire responded and said Shadrach me shack and Abednego come out you servants of the most high God and come here hen they came out of the fire.
Their faith was vindicated. Well, tells us in verse 27 the fire had no effect on the bodies of these men, nor was the hair of their heads singed nor were there trousers damaged nor had the smell of fire even come upon them. Remember one time as a kid when I was in college I was on a very strict budget. I was long way away from home in a department store in the area of the college burned down and was a perfect opportunity for some of us to go by close sheet and I remember buying a sport coat for about eight dollars or something and I thought it was really a great looking sportcoat. It smelled to be sure of smoke but I thought it would dissipate, and I remember when the year was over and I came home and my mother first open my suitcase the whole thing smelled it was months after the wasn't even the singeing of hair that wasn't even there. And I get that. Every time I try to barbecue chicken or something, don't you burns all the hair off my fingers. My wife is in the background saying heat the fire hotter and I'm always trying to get it up to the perfect place in the but not a thing, not even the smell of smoke just this, their faith was vindicated.
They believed God on the edge of the fiery furnace and that's the kind of faith that honors God. That is a tremendous honor to him when you can stand on the edge of the fiery furnace and say I trust God when you can face a tragedy in your family, whatever it might be and say I trust God. God is too wise to make a mistake to loving to be unnecessarily unkind and can too powerful to have anything beyond his control, faith glorifies God give you fourth principle we glorify God by fruitfulness.
We glorify God by fruitfulness is a very important truth in John 15 eight it is stated, just as point-blank as it can be stated. John 15 eight by this is my father glorify, that you bear much fruit and so proved to be my disciple.
God is glorified when you bear much fruit. It dishonors God to have a little fruit I don't think there's any such thing as a no fruit.
Christian by their fruits you shall know them. I mean, I think we have to have some manifestation of the life of God in us, but it dishonors God when we we have little fruit you know when you have a look a long time to find a few shriveled grapes should be a bounty, an abundance of fruitfulness in the life of the Christian.
That's what Paul was pleading for in Philippians 111 when his prayer was that you would be filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God. God is glorified in God is praised when you are still old with the fruit of righteousness, not when it's a noun, then here and there kind of thing but when your life is just filled with righteousness I mean is it is an illustration of that Romans chapter 2 in verse 24 provides a very graphic insight here came the people of Israel right the Jews of the time of Jesus the time of Paul and who they claim was there God Jehovah God, and they claimed it loud and far. Everybody in that part of the world knew that they serve the one true God Jehovah God, but they believed in God, but there was no food in their lives.
There was no fruit. Verse 21 of Romans to you. Therefore, who teach another, do you not teach yourself, you who preach that one should not still be a steel you say that one should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery you who abhor idols, do you rob temples you who boast in the law through your breaking the law do you dishonor God and then verse 24.
What an incredible indictment for the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you. You are not a source of glorifying God. You are a source of blaspheming God you are a discredit to God you say you belong to God.
But look at your life. Thievery, adultery, idolatry, transgression of the law. It's all there. So you blasphemed the name of God in Jesus addressed this in the sermon on the Mount, he said, in contrast to that kind of living here so I want you live. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, your fruitfulness and do what glorify your Father who is in heaven. That's not the way the Jews were living. They were claiming to belong to God were claiming to believe in God.
They were claiming that God was there God that they had a relationship and a connection with God, and they were experiencing God's power and the fact was the name of God was being laughed at, mocked, and blasphemed among the Gentiles because of the absence of any real spiritual fruit any real good works.
Any true righteousness and second Thessalonians chapter 1 verse 11 Paul says to this and we pray for you always, that our God may count you worthy of your calling and this that he would fulfill every desire for goodness and the work of faith with power why we want goodness in your life and power in your life. Why, in order that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, the whole point so that God can receive honor and glory because of the way you live you say yes Christ lives in me and people look at your life and say well done look like it. You say Christ lives in you. Doesn't seem to me that is very powerful. I don't see anything in your life.
That's particularly transcendent or divine. However, on the other hand, people can look at your life and see the demonstration of true righteousness that brings glory to the one who you claim as your Savior. Now we talk about this fruit just briefly I want to go into this because we taught this before, but just very briefly what we talking about we meet fruit, two kinds of fruit action fruit and attitude fruit action fruit is what you do righteous deeds. It could be anything from leading someone to Christ like.
In Romans 113, where Paul says I want to obtain some fruit among you also, even as among the rest of the Gentiles. In other words, I want to lead some people to the knowledge of Jesus Christ. It could be what Paul calls fruit in the Philippians 417 which is a fruit which increases to your account when you give.
In other words, it's a giving.
Giving is a fruit of the work of God in your life being generous giving to those in need.
It could be what Paul has in mind in Colossians 110 bearing fruit in every good work. Every kind of righteous deed. It could be what the writer of Hebrews has in mind. In Hebrews 1315 the fruit of your lips even prays to God any kind of righteous, good deed, any kind of righteous gift any kind of righteous praise to God any deleting of someone to Christ any of those things are action fruit any righteous deed that you do any manifestation of of God in your life.
But behind action fruit.
There is attitude fruit. What is at fruit of the spirit. Love Joy peace generals, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control where you see a life filled with love, joy, peace, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control. There is evidence that God is there. If I say Christ lives in me and my life is without love without joy without tranquility, then who's going to believe that my God is a transforming God right okay got is a need that kind of press that's what he got from Israel, and the result was they blasphemed his name what God wants. First of all is attitude fruit and then action fruit. Listen to this little thought. If you have action fruit in your life without attitude fruit. That's hypocrisy you just doing things on the outside the don't come from the heart what God wants. As you walk in the spirit. The Spirit produces attitude fruit attitude fruit resulting action fruit and when your life is characterized with much fruit in God is glorified but close with a couple of Scriptures Ephesians 321 a benediction to him be the glory in the church or what a mandate he wants glory from his church. To him be the glory in the church, even in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever and we all to say amen that in Philippians 420 now to our God and father be the glory forever and ever. A disease grace to you with John MacArthur thanks for tuning in today.
John is a pastor, author and Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary.
He's titled our current series how to live for God's glory. One of the main and most important ways that Christians glorify God is to put off sin in our lives to to mortify sin, and of course that's a struggle. The apostle Paul who recorded that command in Scripture describe his own struggle to do the things that he should do and not do the things that he shouldn't. In Romans chapter 7 is full of that there's some encouragement in that for us is that right John yeah I think they encouragement is that here you have the most mature, the most outstanding, the most devout Christian in the New Testament and he's struggling with sin, but again it's what I said the other day. It's not that he sinned the way he did before it was converted is that any sin offends him more than all that sin ever did of the unconverted person is not so much offended by his sin as he is disturbed by it and by its consequences. CD actually cherishes that he actually loves the darkness rather than the light, so is not offended by his sin.
But when the person is regenerated and becomes a new creation in all things pass away and new things come. Isn't that sin is never there. It is that for the first time you hate that sin you love the things you ought to love and you hate the things that you ought to hate and affect you love what God loves and hate what God hates and that is the total reversal so the apostle Paul is simply in Romans seven when he says I don't do what I want to do and I do what I don't want to do. He saying for the first time in my life. I hate all that is representative of my fallen flesh, and I love all that is a manifestation of my new creation.
Now struggling with sin is where you have to live your Christian life.
It's in the sanctification zone between justification and glorification and to get a grip on that and to be effective and to grow in grace and in the knowledge of Christ, you need to know how not only to embrace the word of God imbibed the word of God become biblical in your thinking, but you need to know how to eliminate sin how to free yourself from the strength of sin, so we want to mention a book called freedom from sin is the newest study guide I'm looking at it today for the first time and here's the good news will send this full study guide freedom from sin to anyone who's never contacted us before. This is 250 pages of Bible teaching and practical instruction in the subject of freeing yourself from sin. This is a special offer.
If you've never been in touch with our ministry before will send you a free copy of the study guide freedom from sin will be airing this study itself in a few weeks so request the study guide now and you can receive it in time to use it with the material as you follow the broadcast for the rest of you are part of our family. Of course there available as well.
And if you're frustrated by the day-to-day struggle with sin, and if so, you're not alone. This brand-new study guide will be a big help in encouraging you to deal with the temptation that is sure to come to you.
Will send you the freedom from sin. Study guide for free. If you've never contacted us before get in touch today.
Our number here 855 grace and our website de TY.org the freedom from sin.
Study guide includes a question-and-answer session in each chapter and its great material to go through with someone you're discipling more with your Bible study group. Remember the study guide is our gift to you.
If you have never contacted us before. If you've already gotten in touch. It's available for a reasonable price to pick up your copy of the freedom from sin, study guide, call 855 grace or go to G TY.org when you visit the website G TY.org. Make sure you take advantage of the thousands of free resources. You'll find there. That includes daily devotionals written by John and 3500 sermons that cover crucial topics like how to pray the Lord's supper serving your church evangelism and so many others again go to G. TY.now for John MacArthur. I'm Phil Johnson encouraging you to watch grace to you television this Sunday.
Check your local listings for channel and times and make sure you're here tomorrow when John continues his series on how to live for God's glory, with another 30 minutes of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on grace to