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April 10, 2022 7:00 pm
Were goblins to stand as we read the Scriptures of the you will find that in Mark chapter 4 and will be looking at verses to begin with verses 21 to 25 and he said to them, is a lamp brought in to be put under a basket or under a bed and not on the stand for nothing is hidden except to be made manifest was anything secret, except to come to light.
If anyone has ears to hear leading here, he said to them, pay attention to what you hear. With the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Still, more will be added to you for to the one who has, more will be given for the one who has not even what he has will be taken away that with me as we got our Lord in prayer.
Heavenly father, we have the privilege today of looking at three of Jesus's kingdom parables, these parables are parables where Jesus is teaching us how to live out the Christian life is teaching us how to be a faithful witness, teaching us how to be a faithful martyr, if that's what we are called to do is teaching us to quit being dependent on sales to learn how to be dependent on him. These things can be learned in the mind yet not lived out in the heart. Father, we want more than that help us to be real not funny and superficial. Help us to let our light so shine that me and my see our good works and glorify the father in heaven. Although we lift up Wyndham a Catherine she's healing from a broken hip in the hospital this morning.
We pray for healing for Nicole lives.
We pray for right grain is he's having some heart issues again. We as father, you have mercy on these and minister to Cindy's mom Wanda Abercrombie is struggling right now with kidney failure. Lord we love you this morning and we need you desperately please help me to preach with passion and preach with your anointing keep my lips from Eire. May Jesus be exalted. What is the precious and holy name of Jesus that we pray. Amen. You may be seated. Last week we studied the, the parable of the souls and Jesus was teaching us in that parable who's in the kingdom and who is not in that parable. He told us about four different types of soul that represent for conditions of the human heart. He said that the sower went out and he took the seat and he threw it out onto the field those the seed represents the word of God and the the different types of soul once again represent the conditions of the human heart. Now I'll let me come to reiterate a little of what I said last week just to be a reminder to you, but he tells of four souls.
The first one was the hardened path so the seed through was thrown out. It landed on the hardened path and it was so hard it could not penetrate into the soul and very quickly. The birds came down and they ate, they devoured it and was gone. Jesus said this is the this is the a picture of the heart of the hardened sinner, one who is given himself over to see himself and Satan. One who has heard the word of God with his physical ears, but has not heard the word of God's spiritual ears, and he is turned from it and Satan comes and steals the word away. Secondly there is the rocky soil. The rocky soul is very thin, layered, and so when the soul seed goes down into the rocky soul of the roots are not able to go far, it hits a rock and stops and is not able to get moisture to the plant grows up and is the plant grows up on the sun comes and tries it out and it dies very quickly that this is a picture of the human heart that hears the word of God and realizes that that word is truth, but trials and persecution come and they realize the cost is too high and I walk away from it and nothing takes place.
Then there's authority soul. The seed falls down into the thorny Solon and it goes down the roots doing the plant begins to grow and then the thorns come up and they and they choke it out and it dies very quickly. Jesus said this is the type of heart that hears the word of God and rejoices over.
It is excited about it. But then there's a wake-up call worries of this world, the deceitfulness of riches and the desire for stuff creepy and and and choke out the word. And fourthly, there's a good soul that's a soul where the that's been plowed up by the farmer and that's the. The farmer is gone.
The these keys pulled out the rocks and pulled out the thorns and these fertilize the field and the, the prop begins to grow and it produces a deal, 30, 60 or 100 fold. But that's a picture of the true believer. He is good soul. Why he is good soul because God has made him good soul. Why would God do that. Did God save us just to give us a ticket to heaven. Paul said no.
And Romans chapter 8 verse 29 Paul said, for those whom God for Neil. He also did predestinate to be conformed into the image of his son.
So someone says to you, why did God save you don't don't say touch back to that person will God save me to give me a ticket to heaven. God save me to take away the fear of death in my life. Now those things are absolutely true God did save you to get you into heaven to keep you from hail. He didn't save used to take the fear of God. The fear of death out of your heart those not the primary reasons. The primary reason that God saved you was to make you like Jesus was to conform you into the image of Christ.
So Jesus told this long parable of the sower to teach us, who was truly safe and who's not who is truly in the kingdom of light in today's passage, Jesus gives us three short parables.
I called in kingdom parables. They tell us what say people ought to do. They tell us how God's people ought to be, being conformed into the image of Jesus. Got four points I want to share with you in these three parables number one is obedient witnessing. Look at verses 21 to 23 and he said to them, is a lamp brought in to be put under a basket or under a bed and not understand for nothing is hidden except to be made manifest, nor is it anything secret except the come to life. If anyone has ears to hear leading here in the parable of the sower. The difference between the three bad souls and the one good soul is good fruit, but if you belong to the Lord. Your life is going to be producing good fruit. Jesus said that he said that we would know those that are hears about what by their fruit.
As we look at these verses that I'm to share with you just a moment I want you to remember that good fruit grows in a certain environment in a certain atmosphere and it is the atmosphere of joy of obedience of repentance of trust and dependence. We give you a few verses and Galatians chapter 5 verse 22 through 23 Paul said for the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering goodness, kindness of faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
And Colossae is 1 PM Paul said walk in a manner worthy of the Lord to please him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.
In John 15 five Jesus said I'm the vine, you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit. In this parable the Lord specific emphasis here is on the fruit that comes from a believer who is sharing a good witness for Christ sake don't point out something here that sounds maybe insignificant sandlot. Not a real big deal. I think it is a big deal in the new King James version.
The ESV and NASB the, the indefinite article is used instead of the definite article a is used instead of the LMA only read that first verse is a lamp to be brought and to be put under a basket. I think in the in the in the Greek good indefinite article is not bears the definite article and it should be translated as the lamp looks who is the lamp. The lamp is Jesus Christ. Jesus said I am the light of the world.
Jesus is the layout that never needs to be hidden, that we need to be shining forth every time we walk out the door when he read it this way. I think RC Sproul gave a great translation here he is saying.
I did not come here to be concealed forever.
I came here as a lamp that is to be set on a lampstand so that the light that I bring that that I may burst forth and manifest itself clearly to all who dwell in darkness.
I did not come to be covered with a basket or hidden under a bad I came to shine forth a lamp that Jesus is talking about here. Looks like a saucer with a handle on it. They would take olive oil import into it, fill it up they would put a floating wick on the top of it and then they would take that lightly put it on a lampstand, and it was a lampstand that stood high up, and when they did it correctly like that, then it would shine and cover give light to the entire room to put a basket over that lamp was ludicrous. What was I going to do that would just diminish the light rays instead of magnify the light rays. That's the point of Jesus analogy here is very clear.
Christians are not to conceal the gospel. We are to let Jesus shine those who have been transformed by the gospel have a God-given responsibility to present the truth to others. Matthew chapter 5 or 16. Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, let your light so shine among men if they may see your good works and glorify the father which is in heaven after the road. After the resurrection of Jesus. Jesus went to he was getting ready to ascend together. The disciples together.
They all gathered together, and Jesus gave them what we call the great commission.
He said, go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father the son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you and love you.
I will be with you always, even to the end of the age and in acts chapter 1 verse eight Jesus said you were seapower after that the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you shall be witnesses in the movie both in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of the earth, but this is the calling of the believer.
We are called to take the gospel to the four corners of the earth. How does it work what works this way you go on stages, I believe, first of all you as a new Christian you witness to your family, the people that you know the people you love the most. Then you witness to your friends then you witness to your community in your workplace then you witness to the world. We have a omission heart here in this church. Eric was just sharing with us about about who were given to admissions and I were trying to get the gospel out of the world that so so very important is not just an option for us to care about missions is an absolute calling God has called us to let our light shine.
Don't get so obsessed with the world that you forget about the radius of people that are are close to you. Rest assured of this they need to hear the gospel from you. Let let him hear from your lips and from your life who Jesus is and Jesus said I am the way the truth and the life no man comes to the father but by me. They need to hear that from you. You need to learn Bible verses that you can teach them.
So why because the Scripture says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. Having said that, you don't have to be a learned theologian to be a great witness for him became a minister. I think I had more personal opportunities to do one-on-one witnessing than I do now, and in fact when I do one-on-one witnessing to people know who I am that they will often play well.
Doug's pretty dresses job is what he supposed to do and you and is not that way with the Lehman. Sometimes the Lehman may have a more powerful witness than the preacher will years ago in Cambridge, Massachusetts. There was a church that was located near MIT Massachusetts Institute of technology in the church became very burden for the students. They look to see students face all these extremely intelligent people. These highly educated people. These people that were extremely smart and yet most of them were lost as they could be the church that this is what will do will send our most learned theologians will send our best scholars and they'll go in the debate with these the students and and and will reach people for Christ this way and they tried and they went in there was no success whatsoever so they begin to pray about it and the preacher said let's do this lesson. Some of our brand-new converts. Some of those who were just so excited about the gospel.
I can't stand it. One man went and those new convert stood before these intelligent students as he started talking the guy raised his hand.
He stood up when the student started asking questions and PA started talking about evolution in the complexities of the Adam and what he believed were contradictions in the Scripture and the young converts a you know you said I don't have answer those questions yet is avoid case some is a Jesus change my life. Jesus changed my life. He said I was a drug addict.
I was an alcoholic. My life was falling apart and he broke those addictions in my life and he set me free. I don't even want them anymore. He said my life was falling apart as a husband. He said because of my marital infidelity had not been faithful to my wife, and he said I have repented and my wife is forgiven me and that we got a great marriage.
They said I got a son that was way off base and going in the wrong direction. I wouldn't spend any time with him and he said now I'm reading the Scripture to a man of God in human would play them together and were enjoying each other and he said my son is taken up a completely different direction. Nail said I want you to know something he said my life is not perfect by any way shape or form but he said before my life in Christ. I was miserable and he said, but now I am filled with joy, he should do. I have problems absolutely eye problems.
But Jesus walks me through my problems. He said I used to be us us afraid of death.
He said I'm not afraid of death anymore because I know where I'm going. When I die and I will spend forever and ever and ever with the Lord Jesus Christ. That next week several of these MIT students showed up at that church folks listen, you have a calling from God to be a witness.
You can't save anybody you can't talk anyone into salvation. God saves his Almighty, all-powerful grace, folks you can't do that anything but the use of God, but God can use you and God will use you if you take the basket off the lamp when people see that light of Christ in you, and they're good that the negative responded that they got a look and they go see that light is real and they're gonna say to themselves, what am I going to do that light. What am I going to do with Christ. Verse 22 Jesus said, for nothing is hidden except to be revealed, nor is anything secret, except to come to light. The light of Jesus reveals who we really are and we can deceive other people we can deceive ourselves, but we can deceive him. I point to his diligent working and honest look at verses 24 through the 25 and he said to them, pay attention to what you hear.
With the measure you use, it will be measured to you and still more will be added to you for to the one who has, more will be given from the one who has not even what he has will be taken away .1 Jesus explains to us when our evangelistic responsibility is within .2 he is he is he is explaining to us and telling us the importance of carrying out that task. I look at it this way is like a commander and armies got his troops together.
He shared with him what the mission is pieces guys do you get it you understand what the mission is, I say yes sir, this is okay carry it out. Do it get on with it. Don't put it off. Get on with it right now get busy. Jesus tells the disciples, there will be an eternal reward for faithful service. The sermon will mail Jesus told us that when we give we are to give secretly, we are to give anonymously have had people say what I want to give that way I fussy a person and they don't want to be able to give to that person and so they'll know that I'm the one that gave it because I want them to know that I care about them and that I love them and and I want to help them will yes but Jesus says if you do that you're the one that gets the glory. Instead of him getting the glory. People come to me. Oftentimes in this church. They give me money and I say Doug, could you give this to this particular family and the church is going to a real tough time right now and by no means tell them who gave it to you. You keep it anonymous so I'll go to these people give them the money. That's where that come from, who gave me this and I'll say Jesus did and that's a no no no, who really gave me this I see Jesus really gave it to, and the giver gets his reward in heaven. But let me ask you this question.
What is it that gives a person the intestinal fortitude to stand courageously even in the face of dying for Christ.
What what happens in in the future martyrs heart when he stands before people that make killing and stands courageously for Christ that is how they do it. First of all because of their love for Christ and second for promise of eternal reward that future martyr knows this to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord, and he knows that his sin is death comes he is going to be with Jesus at the throne of Christ, he is going to be with him and he's going to have a crown of glory that will be eternal in his worship will be sweeter and better than he can never begin to imagine. On to think of Simon Peter for just a minute. History tells us that at Simon Peter was taken out on the heel not far from Rome and he was getting ready to be crucified. They tolling said before we crucified you were going to crucify your wife and she is going to be crucified, and you're gonna have to watch it and so they brought Peter and his wife out to this heel. They laid his wife down on the cross and they nailed spikes to her hands into his through her feet.
They lifted the cross up and Peter had to watch the us he looked up at his wife and the blood was rolling down from her body. The tears are rolling down from Peter's eyes and he's deeply hurt over the us she is suffering he knows it. It hurts and he looks up at his wife is his honey. Remember the Lord.
Remember the Lord. Remember the Lord.
She finally brings her last breath, and I look over at Peterson right now it's your turn. Said you got anything you want to say any last words before your crucified and he said yeah he said when you crucify me, crucify me upside down from not worthy to be crucified like Jesus time you do that had Peter do it. Peter did it because he knew what was coming.
He knew that just as soon as he died he was going to be in the presence of Jesus, and they could say to Jesus our Lord. Your crucifixion I denied you and through my whole life I've hurt my heart is hurt over that denial. But it might crucifixion. I glorified you and Peter will hear the words from Jesus. Well done my good and faithful servant international into the joy Lord Polycarp was 86 years old. He was arrested by the Roman authorities is taken into the Coliseum field with unbelieving infidels. He was told that he must denounce Christ or die and he had to recant. He was told they said were to give you a chance you can say Caesar is Lord. You have to mean it. All the others say it will let you go with Polycarp say he said this 86 years I have served him, and he never did me wrong. How can I blaspheme my King who saved me. He died in the flames.
What was his motivation Christ and Christ reward his destruction and flames was temporary, but being with Jesus in heaven, and eternal crown is eternal .3 dependent.
Waiting. Look at verse 26 to 29 and he said the kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground. He sleeps and rises night and day in the seed sprouts and grows.
He knows not hail the earth produces by sale. First the blade in the ear than the full grain in the ear when the grain is right that once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come. This passage reminds me of Paul's words are written in first Corinthians chapter 3.
He reminds us that we are totally dependent on God, the power lead someone to Christ the power to effectively share the gospel is of God, not of us.
The apostle Paul who said they ask what is Apollo is what the Aeneas is Paul, for I planted in Apollo's watered. But God gave the increase that. That's why we must independently wait on God. We can we can talk. We can pray we can live godly before people we can we can just ask God to help us but we don't have the power to regenerate heart. Only God can do that we must dependently wait folks don't stop praying witnessing for a lost loved one that is so important there. Some of you here right Naomi, we change that.
There many of you here right now to change that their all of you here right now who have loved ones who are lost who are headed for an eternal hail and you've witnessed to them and you pray for them until you're blue in the face and steel. There is no conversion what you do you keep doing what you're doing you, but you dependently wait, you can plant a seed, you can water, but only God can give the increase. Don't ever quit praying and witnessing to that lost loved one until either you or him bring their last breath dependently wait to give you a personal illustration here and this is not given Doug the glory story.
This is a God story I and in this situation a lot. Try to do is just get out of the way. Let God work. But back in 2004, there was a radio listener that called in the church and asked what time our church started and she her name is Doris Colwell she wanted to come and visit with us so that next Sunday. Her husband Howard is an atheist work for WBT and he he drove her there in his pickup. She got out and she went into our church service and Howard sat out in his pickup under a tree and would not come in.
I went to visit them than next week and now I walked in and wanted to talk to Howard and he was watching evolution feelings on PBS, and as I started talking to him. He reached over the television and he cut it up so the volume was too hot so he couldn't hear me like a stuff just continued to go on and he kept bringing her out here sitting in the parking lot and she coming in lecture about two years Doris Colwell died Howard call me up and Howard said he a said… He can call me at which it could you please do the funeral it and I said yes I did. The funeral service and two weeks later looked at the congregation and there was Howard could not believe it. He spit was fun to me on the way out that day and he said I don't take you and Cindy out for supper and the next night we went out to K and W night and I noticed some broken the seeming about two weeks after that I had an opportunity to share the gospel with thing and Howard trusted Christ as his Lord and Savior will hit the easterly come to church. Got very faithful.
He's here on Sunday mornings about two years later Howard died and his son Doug who is not a believer. Call me up and asked me if I would do the funeral service and I said I would. I would be glad to did the funeral service and after the service we went back to Howard's house. They had food all prepared for said Doug got me off to the side. We spent about an hour just talking about the Lord. After that Doug call me every once in a while just had questions and it was just a few years after that that the Lord broke Doug's heart. He trusted Christ as his Lord and Savior.
They moved to Charlotte North Carolina down at the beach and Haiti started getting CDs from us are secretaries Beth Parkhill and Bev Nolan would send him CDs of our of our services here, and that every other week he called me up and he asked me questions and we talk about the Lord just developed a very, very dear friendship two years ago Doug contracted esophageal cancer two weeks ago that cancer took Doug's life. Folks, it is not of Paul is not of Apollo's is not Doug is not of Eugene is of God.
We can plant and we can water, but only God gives increase, you have lost loved ones are don't quit praying for them.
Don't quit witnessing to them until either they bring their last breath or you breathe your last breath. Doris caught Colwell died thinking that she would never see her husband Howard or Doug ever again. When she died she believes they were headed to an eternal hail and that's where they would spend all of eternity and she would never see them again. What a glorious reunion. It must've been when Howard shows up there in heaven and tells her what Jesus had done in his heart and then dug her son shows up in heaven. What a reunion that must've been folks dependently wait dependently wait like .40. Let me take something else to save this also good shalom about 15 miles away from calabash.
We have a dear, dear friend, here, that just not long ago became the pastor at a church, new life Church in calabash. His wife Doug Colwell's wife is name Alicia. They'd not found a church home. I just couldn't find a church that that really fit in so totally sure about this church in calabash.
I talked to Chris Gregory yesterday and his family here with us today read in the family of girls and her son and there with us nice and I talked to christen and and Chris said I called Alicia and said we have the opportunity to talk and we talked for about an hour we had the opportunity to minister to her a lot young ladies not had a church I thought man in this house is just all over this not what we've done, not Chris not Doug not Eugene not not any of us, we might have been used a little bit but it was God gives an increase of glorious that is .4 confident walking. Look at verses 33, 34, and he said with what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable shall we use for it is like a grain of mustard seed, which was signed on the ground is the smallest of all the seeds on earth. Yet, when it is sunny grows up and becomes larger than all the garden plants puts out large branches of the birds of the air can make nasty shade with many such parables, he spoke the word to them as they were able to hear it.
He did not speak to them without a parable, but privately to his own disciples explained everything Jesus closes by telling the disciples that they can walk or carry out the gospel work with full confidence and they will be successful as he noted that Matthew 16. What did Jesus say said on this rock I will build my church and the gates of hail will not prevail against it. Not only did he say will it be successful. But he said it will grow large. Jesus said it will start off small, but it will grow exponentially use example of little mustard seed that starts off like a little mustard seed very very small that grows into a huge tree like Bush Bible critics have use the statement of Jesus.
The claim that there errors in the Scripture because there's are some seeds that are smaller than the mustard seeds of Jesus just did know it is talking that he was wrong.
He made arrow. No we didn't, folks. Jesus doesn't make a or he doesn't see any can't make an era.
So what was he doing he was speaking in hyperbole like we all do. He was saying to them, look smallest see the you know of is a school mustard seed. It was just speaking that way we do that, I say the sun rises. Does the sun really rise no sunset steel and the earth get orbits around it and the earth rotates and it looks like the sun is rising and setting, but really not what I say the sunrises you know exactly what I'm talking about is what Jesus was doing here.
Speaking in hyperbole. John MacArthur said it this way. When Jesus said it is smaller than all the seeds that are upon the soul. He was not saying that the mustard seeds of the smallest things on planet Earth, wild orchids, for example, have a C much smaller than that of the mustard plant. Rather, Jesus was limited in your statement to that which is audience would have been familiar of the plants growing in the first century Israel for agricultural purposes, mustard plant, the smallest seeds. Moreover, using the mustard seed as a way to refer to things that were very small, was a common proverbial expression, one that does listing the Jesus would've immediately recognized even though the mustard seed is very small. Yet, when it is sown, it grows up and becomes larger that all the garden plants, and forms large branches, mustard plants and Israel grew to a height of 15 feet larger than other garden plants with branches in which birds could nest Jesus was showing his disciples the need to just trust him and stand in faith.
Don't be thrown off track by appearances after Jesus death and resurrection. The number of true believers in an and Jerusalem was that hundred 20 people and then on the day of Pentecost 3000 people were safe and within just a few days after that there were 5000 people. The number had grown that much that weekly budget started off in Jerusalem but moved quickly from Jerusalem to Judea, to Samaria and to the uttermost parts of the earth is started off with just with the Jewish people, but moved very quickly into the Gentile world and it grew and it grew and it grew, the parable says this quit looking inward and start looking up. That's who is the head of the church, head of the church is Jesus Christ is not some pastor that the Pope it's it's Jesus. Jesus is the head of the church who is he he is a son of God, King of Kings and Lord of lords.
He is the creator of heaven and earth, and he promised us success. He promised us that on this rock I will build my church and the gates of hail will not prevail against it. So here's the command brothers and sisters walk confidently. Jesus is in control is pray. Heavenly father. In this passage are teaching us that little as much when God's in it. Your sharing truce to help us be humble. Not proud. We praise you for that.
Lord, our tendency is to honor sales more than honor you, help us to repent of that father help us as a church to be faithful to your principles help us to stand on your word and to do it lovingly help us to remove the bucket in the lampstand. We love you Lord it's in Jesus precious name we pray