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977. Loving God Through a Godly Life

The Daily Platform / Bob Jones University
The Truth Network Radio
April 27, 2021 7:00 pm

977. Loving God Through a Godly Life

The Daily Platform / Bob Jones University

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April 27, 2021 7:00 pm

Dr. Sam Horn continues the Seminary Chapel series entitled “Loving God,” with a message titled “Loving God Through a Godly Life” from Acts 20.

The post 977. Loving God Through a Godly Life appeared first on THE DAILY PLATFORM.

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Welcome to The Daily Platform from Bob Jones University in Greenville South Carolina were continuing a study series called loving God today speaker is Dr. Sam Horn, former Dean of the Bob Jones University seminary. The title of his message is loving God through a godly life from acts 20 that like to ask you to find the book of acts in the New Testament this morning and while you're turning there. It is a great delight to be here and to have this opportunity to address you this morning.

My responsibilities at the University require a good bit of travel, and unfortunately one of the travel days for Dr. Pettit and I is on Tuesdays and so I've had to miss a considerable number of our chapels together at the seminary, but I have been able to come to quite a few of them and have been been challenged by what I've heard it and encouraged by the fellowship that we have together.

II just very much love that the context in which we get to come together. Talk about not just the word of God that really talk about it being like the one we're looking at when we talk about loving God with all of her heart, so I hope this morning that you will be encouraged. I know that you'll be encouraged. On the way out because on the way out there whole pilot Krispy Kreme donuts waiting for you. So if if the word of God is sweet to you if you just endure to the end there will be something sweet in the end, and I know Timothy and and the folks who are tied together with his team have really been burden to do this for you and and David overly another so you are on their hearts.

You are on our minds. We very much appreciate what you're doing.

We know that this is a busy time in your weak and a lot on you silly wanted to do something for you today that we just expressed to you are our appreciation for you. I love for you and we hope that you have a great day will begin by telling you little story in that I want to take you to a cameo passage in the book of acts chapter 20 Sophie find book acts and find chapter 20 and and begin looking if you will, in verse 17. While I sort of set up a story for you little to drop us into this text. When I pastored in Milwaukee was in the church office one morning and I heard sort of a big noise coming from our parking lot in I looked out the window. My office sort of pointed out to the parking lot and so I kinda move that the blind, a little bit. I looked out and here was this big 18 wheeler that was just sorta roaring up through our parking lot and we had one of those traditional kind of church awnings you know to what you, but it's sort of an extended area where you can park under drop people off if it's inclement weather in up in Wisconsin a good bit of years ago my weather and so this truck comes roaring up and right underneath that awning and the next thing I know this guy comes out of the truck comes into the lobby of our church visit eventually ended up being one of the reasons why we got a security system at our church. We didn't have it at that time we comes barreling in through the lobby the church he comes up to the window we had one of these little windows where there was somebody sitting behind. It was sorta there to greet people and he had a crumpled up people piece of paper in his hand any kind of put it in a put it there on the lot on the ledge and he said to the lady that was standing back there. I want to talk to the person who gave me this and he handed her a gospel tract from our church and he looked pretty pretty rough so I was so glad that she ended up getting the associate pastor to go talk and so are sociopaths at the time was a guy named Dan and and Dan was. I mean, he was one of these guys that that just was very sort of frail looking guy but you love people and he was our our our pastor for counseling and he didn't intimidate anybody and he could just go in there telling your whole life story and he would listen to you for hours on end and he would just nod his head so he was the perfect person to go talk to Chuck.

So Chuck told the story said basically he had been in the park one day earlier that year in the spring and he had been wearing the coat that he had on. And somebody had come up to him. He had just come out of prison.

He had just been released and he was sitting there in the park, trying to figure his life out and somebody came up to him from our church and handed him this gospel tract will lo and behold it was Pastor Dan who would actually handed him the tract we did know all this still a bit later. The story so he took this gospel tract. It is just throwing it out and crumpled it up and he stuck it in the code of it all in the pocket of his coat and he went on about his business and that happened to be one of the last cold days in the spring so he didn't wear that coat again until the fall, and he had taken that coat off out of his closet earlier that morning, put it on in his life. He just gone from bad to worse and so he was in his truck and somehow he stuck his hand in his pocket and he felt around and he found this crumpled piece of paper, pull it out wondered what it was Saul that was a dragon on the back of the track was a picture of our church. The address of our church and God moved on his heart and he decided to come to our church just to find out if there was any way God could reach into his life and that day Chuck got saved and he started to come to his church to our church rather I will never forget he dream brought his wife Donna and their kids and Donna did not want to come to church but Chuck was a kind of guy you didn't say no to. He was Italian so you just didn't say no to him, so Donna would come to church another forget they would sit in the back and and so that we had to services they would come the first and Donna would just sit there. The kids are like all over. They love dark archers. They love the kids programs in and Chuck was like the guy get him easy literally say you got insane today.I would just glare Adam and we come up and using Haydon here to suck. Maybe, not literally. She would talk like this on my new theater. David is checkmate makeup and this went on for an entire year. Chuck man he was growing. The kids were grown. Donna just at the back and every year we had a church picnic and so about allowing literally almost a year later we were at our church picnic and Donna, who was still coming to church because Chuck made her was sitting at the table where I was sitting and she sat across from me and she finally just looked up and she blurted out pastor CM I need to get saved but is there anybody besides Chuck that could lead me to the Lord because I don't want to have. I want to give him the satisfaction so we had a lady that led to one of the Lord and Donna got baptized. Chuck got baptized and was an imprint they their lives were radically transformed by the gospel and I had an opportunity to sit down and talk to Donna and ask her what made the difference in sheet she started in her own way, telling me about person after person after person normal everyday people who came to our church week after week after week, who were displaying the gospel out of a heart and a life that had been transformed by so when we talk today about loving God. When we talk about using our life in preparing our heart for service for the gospel. It isn't so much about what you do in terms of of what actual classes you take about. Certainly, that's a big part of what were talking about. It's it's about the preparation of a life to make a difference in the life of a person like Don so I'm to take you to a portion of Scripture and we don't have much time this morning's original work very quickly through this text, but when we come to the book of acts chapter 20 verse 17 we come to one of the last times that we have an extended record of Paul's ministry in our new test in the course of of Paul coming to this place where he is saying goodbye to a group of people that he administered to for a number of years. The Holy Spirit gives us in his word, a cameo of what it was about Paul's life itself that I believe gave a great deal of power to the ministry that God allowed them to have. And that's the thing I'm interested in getting at this morning is not just what do we say and not just the skills that we possess and that we home but what is it about our life itself that we need to be asking God to cultivate so that we, like Paul, could take our lives but make an impact with them in somebody else's life. No notice in verse 17 we find in the context Paul is coming for Miletus and as he comes down to this place, he sends to Ephesus and he calls for the elders of the church and when they were come to him.

He said under them, you know, from the first day that I came on to Asia after what manner I have been with you at all seasons and I would suggest to you that the first thing that will give your life, power and impact for the gospel is this is what Paul talked about here when he described himself as having a consistent life and a consistent testimony. He says to them. Now you know you know from the very beginning when I first came in your midst, you know what I was like you know how I live you saw all my life. You experience that you you you were touched by you know how I operated when I was in your midst that from the very first day I have been with you in all seasons. In other words he's saying you saw every side of my life. You saw me under every conceivable set of circumstances, and I would suggest to you that in the years to come between now and the time that you stand before the Lord. One of the greatest things that you have in the arsenal of your ministry for the Lord is your own life, testimony, the consistency of your life making a difference in somebody else's life.

Paul's life preached as loudly as his words, and I want to be real clear that that we do need words to preach the gospel but those words will be severely hampered if we don't have a life that is consistently lived in a way that displays the radical transformation of that gospel is one of the things that we see here is a consistent life and testimony.

Let me show you a second thing that Paul talks about notice as we keep reading in verse 19 where he goes on, and he talks about having been with you at all seasons serving the Lord with all humility of mind. It's not just there was a consistent life and testimony that life and that testimony were marked by a humble and gentle spirit word for humility. Here is the idea of lowliness of mind is not the only place in our New Testament, where Paul talks about this concept of lowliness of mind if you go to Ephesians chapter 4 and you start reading in verse one where he talks about a worthy walk. One of the very first things that he tells us will be necessary in living a life worthy of the gospel is the cultivation of the right kind of mindset that we have about ourselves. He learned to think properly about himself.

He learned what it meant to develop a low sort of idea of humility. Here the lowliness of mind and the graciousness of spirit that marked the Lord Jesus Christ. I think we've all been in circumstances where we have met people and the kind of people that sometimes run into you are people who never think that they ever have a bad idea. We've never met someone like that.

Nobody gets fist pounded on the table into the gospel. You need to get say being and I think that's a little bit of what Donna was saying about Chuck and one of the things we really got talking to her about Chuck was the fact that over the course of the year she began to see such a radical transformation in his spirit and she began to see such a radical transformation in his life, but that's what began to break down her defenses that she began to see God working in graciousness in the life of her husband Paul develop not just a consistent life testimony, but he he he demonstrated a humble and gentle spirit never forget.

I was at a game one time a ballgame when my children was playing a ball team and we were sitting there and I happen to come up on a group of teens, and they were sort of sitting on the sideline and they were talking about a church that one of them had visited and and they were basing that the individual saying I and I am never going to go back to that church and she began to tell the story and they didn't know I was listening and I wasn't intending to listen until I started cooking up on the story, and I began to realize they were talking about our church. She had been sitting on the sideline at a youth activity as a visitor and and she was sitting there and somebody from our church came up to her and said game, and she said no, which probably wasn't the smartest thing to do any said then and then just leave now.

That's her story. The chances are very great that it probably didn't happen quite that way, but that's what she heard and that's what she felt, and several days later, I'm sitting on the sidelines of a ballgame. Hearing the story being told. And all of a sudden, realizing we just took a major step back for the gospel because of the spirit that somebody displayed to this young lady is not just that there is a consistent life testimony. There has to be a humble and gentle in spirit and then thirdly, there is the cultivation here in verse 19 of a tender and compassionate heart. Notice what he says, serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with Manny tears. I want you to think about how you think about the people that God brings in your life which you to think about really where they are in life and what their life is like in some point. As you strive to reach those people for the gospel and is you do life together. One of the things that starts to happen is you start to develop not just a deep affection for and not just a deep affinity with but really a deep brokenness over these people.

I had the opportunity. Some years ago many years ago actually, of pastoring a little church in Pelzer South Carolina. How did you know or Pelzer South Carolina Pelzer South Carolina basically the people in Pelzer call themselves the armpit of South Carolina. It's a mill town and I pastored out there in a little church called Christ Memorial Bible church and the people had built the church themselves and so my very first Sunday there.

I walk in the church and everybody there were seven people in the congregation and everybody had brought their own chair from home and so here we are on Sunday morning and here is one of these La-Z-Boy armchairs and there is 1/3 elderly woman who was chewing snuff sitting in that armchair with the recliner thing up.

You know and just there. She is in church. One of the deacons chewed tobacco and he came to me this is that this is this is an honest story came to be's and pastor latches and preacher. I don't blame Fry for Amanda talk to God with tobacco in his mouth as if you asked me to pray church I need advance notice. That was her church and there is a family that started to come to that turtle. Actually, there was a lady the start come to church with children. Children that she would bring church and she was a believer and she was married to a man named Doyle who never came to church. Basically, he worked in he would go home and and he would drink and he would get drunk and I was at the time ministry here at the University and pastoring a church and every every weekend or every Friday, every other Friday I get a call from Gail and Chauncey preacher Horn II need to go find Doyle because he is drinking up the paycheck and I got little babies to feed now I was. I think I was all of 26 I was in my little suit with my Bob Jones tile and I get my old car and I would drive down to the bars in Pelzer South Carolina and I had a guy in her church whose name was Terry. Terry was a trucker I had these friendships with truckers cannot say Terry. We had to find all and he would, he was like my bodyguard because he was huge and we would go in these bars looking for Doyle and I got to where the bartenders knew I was a say hey preacher Horn. He's not here. I want to go down and then they tell me the next bar and so I go find all in and commentary. I got so broken for Doyle we get them out of those bars. He was ahead.

When he got drunk he got happy any, put this, if you tell it what about this. My preacher Yala come here on Sunday. I like you don't even come here and we take into this little roadside café and we fill them up with coffee and to the best of my ability as a young sort of wet behind the ears guy try to pastor a little Church of God called the special ed church. We were out there in this little community. And here we are and just trying to put the gospel and I have a clue what I was doing but I did know this.

I was broken for this man about five years ago I got a phone call and on the other and that bone was Doyle pastor. I know he's to come get me from the bars and used to tell me about the gospel and you didn't think I was listening but I was and I want you know I got saved in two years ago I met his grandson in a rooted and grounded conference and last year I met the little girl that used to come to church, who was his daughter and she drove over to where I was and she said pastor Horn. I want you know I don't what happened to daddy but he is a changed man, a compassionate heart.

Number four. Paul cultivated and demonstrated perseverance in the midst of suffering and affliction, but in verse 19 serving the Lord with all humility of mind with many tears and temptations that the word temptation. There's word for trial May trials, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews. Here's the apostle Paul and if anybody if anybody had reason to turn back from the ministry. If anybody had reason to turn back from the sharing and the continued proclamation of the gospel to people that he deeply cared about, but who constantly turned away from him. It was the apostle Paul and I would suggest to you that you and I are going to have to cultivate this in our life. If the gospel is going to go forward.

The gospel advances on the road of relationships, and often that road leads in a relationship through a valley of trial, or a valley of testing or Valley of suffering is precisely what the apostle Paul is talking about here. David Livingston opened up the continent of Africa wrote a letter to his sister. Prior to going into the heartland of uncharted Africa and and I want to just redo a portion of that letter. He said this, we have an immense region before us. Thousands live and die without God and without hope. Though the command went for the ball, go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. Here's the part I want you to listen to it is indeed a venture to take a wife and children into a country where fever African fever prevails.

But who believes that Jesus would refuse to make a venture for such a captain, a parent's heart alone. This is him talking about his own children of parents heart alone can feel as I do when I look at my little ones and ask. Shall I return with this one or that one alive. I can't begin to imagine this kind of perseverance. However, we are his and wish to have no interest apart from those of his kingdom and his glory may he bless us and make us a blessing even under death.

And then there was boldness and proclamation. Look at verse 20 and 21 bosses and how I get back. Nothing that was profitable in view but have showed you, and if taught you publicly from house to house, testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ, as you think about using your life to make a difference for the gospel isn't just a consistent life and testimony. It isn't just like you. Humility of heart and the gentleness of spirit is it just the tenderness and compassionate cultivation of of your life toward another and it's not just dirt and suffering.

It's the boldness to look at a person that God puts upon your heart and that God brings in your life and to tell them the truth about the gospel out of a life that is been impacting them because you have been consistent because you have had a tender heart because you have displayed compassion and care posted I leave nothing out. I testified in the Jews into the Greeks.

I include all the components of the gospel and I proclaim it to the people that God brings the cross my path. We here's a very very rebuking question for me and that is this. We talk a lot about the importance of the gospel. In summary, like me, will stand up in front of people like you and we will exhort you to do it, but here's a very penetrating question that I have to answer fairly frequent in my own heart. When was the last time that you actually shared the gospel with somebody because you stand up and tell people to do this all the time you encourage people to do this you you you you pray for people to do this but when was the last time you took an opportunity that God brought in your path to share the gospel.

You know that's a very very penetrating question when the spirit of God brings that to your mind, and it's a question I hope that all of his face and then I want you to notice there was obedience in the face of expected difficulty. Look at verse 22 in verse 23 bosses and now behold I go bound in the spirit in Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there. Here's what I do know I do know one thing. Verse 23 say that the Holy Ghost witnesses in every city. The Holy Ghost is confirming this in every place that I have been on my way here saying that bonds and afflictions abide me there is there is sure and certain difficulty and the spirit of God is confirming what Paul suspects Paul, you are headed for certain difficulty.

You are going to be arrested in this is the first at the end of acts we find a Paul is and what we call the first Roman imprisonment is released for a brief time there is a second Roman imprisonment that Anne's and his beheading so the Holy Spirit is not exaggerating the Holy Spirit is not lying to Paul when he says this is confirming in very very sure ways that Paul the way forward for you as you go on this mission is going to get very hard. Apostle Paul in verse 24 displays the final thing and it is this willing and joyful sacrifice needed to verse 24. It's not that the apostle Paul is just blatantly ignoring the spirit of God. He is actually saying something very different. Using none of these things move me, Lord, I know that that what you're saying is true. I know that there is going to be specific difficulty I had for me and it is going to be excruciating and limiting, but I want you to know that I still am committed to this. None of this moves me, neither count I my set my life dear to myself so that I might finish my course with joy and that the ministry which I received of the Lord to testify the gospel of the grace of God. In other words, Paul is looking at his life and he is saying is what it's all about. I received a ministry from the Lord and that ministry is to testify about his gospel and no matter what the Holy Spirit tells me is coming. I still want to do it. I know that it's can involve short difficulty.

I know that it is eventually gonna cost my life and I still want to do it. You have a gospel that is changing your life there people that desperately need to hear it is going to mean for some of you sure difficulty still want to do.

May the Lord help us to cultivate a life and heart like this. Father, thank you for your goodness. Thank you for your grace. Thank you for the way in which we see this example very practically laid out for us and the cameo right out of the book of acts. Lord I thank you that we can come together today and and observed this and allow your spirit. Now take this put it to work in our life.

We love you. Thank you for the way that you've ministered to us now may we go and do that in our own lives. We pray in Jesus name, amen.

You been listening to a message preached at Bob Jones University by Dr. Sam Horn which was part of the series of loving God. Join us again tomorrow as we continue the series on The Daily Platform

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