Sunday Morning Service, 6/27/10
- [ Come, Now Is The Time To Worship]
- [ Rejoice]
- [ Everyday]
- [ Enough]
- [ Love Has Come]
- [ Holy Is The Lord]
- [ How Can I Keep From Singing]
- [ Majestic]
- [ God Is Alive]
> Jack Rohrer
There have been times that were rough, but every time, God pulls me through. People at work ask me, “How can you handle it?” I say, “It’s not me; it’s God.”
> Will Booker
I’m thankful for the goodness and mercy of God. Anything in God we can give God credit for, we should. We’ve got to have God’s energy and love in our life. If you’re trusting in God, that can carry you farther than you could ever imagine. That’s my testimony.
Message: I Want To Be Saved
> Pastor Thomas
Every generation has questions about God. There’s a bus with a sign on it saying something like, “Don’t be a follower of God; make up your own mind.” The enemy gets in there with all kinds of false statements, trying to get people to not get into God. In the sixties when I was growing up, it was “God is dead.”
How many of you, as an adult, have been chewed out for something you’ve done wrong?
> (many hands)
So there you are. We as an adult sometimes do things wrong. We don’t need someone hovering over us all day saying “Do this; don’t do that.” But like children, we need guidance.
How many of you went in to boot camp already knowing what you were supposed to do?
> (no hands)
How many of you, when you got there, thought “this is crazy!”?
> (lots of hands)
When I was in the Navy, we had to wash our own clothes with a bucket and a scrub brush. Then, whether summer or winter, cold or hot, we had to tie our clothes up on the line with these little pieces of rope. And they had to be just so – if anything was the least bit wrong, the Company Commander would pull the strings loose and let the clothes fall on the ground. Then you had to wash them all over again. Nowadays, recruits have their laundry done for them. That’s just not right!
It’s the same with Christ. You have to have the basics of Christianity to build on. But people have been in the church for twenty and thirty years without gaining a foundation of understanding of the word of God. Therefore everything in their life is based on misunderstanding, superstition, and fallacies.
In this scripture, Peter had just come from the beach after hearing Jesus say “Feed my sheep; feed my sheep; feed my lambs.” Like all the Jews, he was in Jerusalem for the Passover and the day of Pentecost. People heard a commotion and started gathering outside the upper room. So Peter leaned out the window and started to preach. He told them about this Lord and Christ whom they had crucified. He reviewed the prophecies of the Old Testament foretelling that Messiah would come. They heard the message and were pricked in their hearts, and said:
- Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
Then Peter said, “Repent.” That is the foundation of our faith: repentance. You can go down the street and ask prostitutes, muggers, thieves, and store clerks: “Do you believe in Jesus?” And everyone of them will answer “I believe.” But belief doesn’t wash your soul clean. That’s where the foundation of many people starts to crumble. They say, “Well, I believe!”
Is anybody a millionaire in here? Drat! Well, if you were a millionaire, how would you know? By your bank account. You could have a nice, fancy car, or a nice, fancy house and still be in debt up to your eyeballs. But if you’re a millionaire, you’ve made financial decisions that have increased the size of your bank accounts. Many people think that millionaires dress a certain way and drive certain cars. I had the privilege of knowing a millionaire: he used to coach my little-league team. He drove an old, beat-up Chevy and lived in a ramshackle house. Why should you spend your wealth trying to impress people that don’t matter?
How many of you know that you’re saved? How do you know that you’re saved?
- By the Word of God
- You’ve repented and obeyed the Word of God, and continued to live a repented life
You can’t know you’re doing that if you don’t know the Word of God. People say, “I know that I’m saved, because I gave my heart to Jesus when I was ten.” But what have you been doing since then? Drinking, smoking, cussin’, and fussin’: that doesn’t save you. You say, “I can feel Jesus in my heart.” That doesn’t save you either. That’s just the pricking in your heart trying to get you to repent. The Bible says that we are new creatures in Christ. We don’t behave or talk the same way anymore.
I remember the first day that I got saved. I was stationed on the Navy Base working with the Ninth District Military Security Group. Sometimes we went out and picked up deserters, and sometimes we just made the rounds. I had my soda on the dashboard in that “magic circle” where you put your drink. I drove over the railroad tracks and the magic left the dash. The soda levitated, moved over, and dumped in my lap. And I swore. Then I pulled over to the side of the road and cried. I was a combat veteran; I was a man. Yet because I swore, it broke my heart, because I knew that I had displeased God. We can’t let filthy communication come out of our mouth. Some people say that you can’t be in the military without swearing, but I spent eight years in the military. I spent four as the best heathen Satan had, and four striving to be the best saint that God had. I know that it is possible to serve in the military without swearing.
So if you do something wrong, let it break your heart. God wants you to come to him and say, “God, I’ve blown it; I’ve not done right; I need to change.” Then God allows us to change. We change from the old songs we used to praise to learning to sing praises to God. The saying is, “You are what you eat.” We may not look like hot-dogs and hamburgers, but we look like we’ve been enjoying them. Before my Dad died of heart disease and emphysema, he said “I realize now that mos tof that stuff was heart sludge.”
Church, going to Bible studies once a week is not going to sustain your spiritual life. Praying when something goes wrong is not going to sustain your spiritual life. If you don’t put the spiritual things of God in your life and become that new creature, then your old man will reign. And your old man will not make it into the kingdom of heaven. God’s not going to ask for a list of the people who attend this church. God isn’t even going to ask for your baptismal certificate. God’s already got a list. In fact, he’s got two. One of them is the book of works. When you swear, it’s written down. (I can’t imagine how that happens, but it does.) If we don’t understand that as a foundation of our faith, then we’re going to make bad choices, and that book of works is going to be filled with things that we don’t want written down. But the Bible says that everything done in secret will be brought to light.
I don’t believe in “Jesus light.” There is light beer, light margarine, maybe even light hamburgers, but there is no “light Jesus.” We need to live our lives with an understanding of the will of Jesus. Then we won’t have to guess about what to do. We won’t have to ask for someone else’s opinion or approval. There is only one who needs to approve of what you do. We know that we can do all things through Jesus Christ. But when we get away from that and do things by ourselves, man we get into trouble, don’t we?
After that message, Peter said:
- Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
- He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
Why is baptism important? Why is getting baptized in water important? They don’t give you a bar of soap, and it isn’t about membership in a church. But if we look at the history of the world, we see that first the earth was a ball of water, and out of that water came dry land.
In the priesthood, there was a laver of water outside the sanctuary, and God said the priests must wash, that they die not.
We don’t have to understand why God thinks it’s important. We just have to do it, like I had to tie my underwear on a line with a certain knot.
Pastor Paine, there have been restaurants that we’ve been to where you couldn’t get in unless you were wearing a coat and tie. There are other restaurants where the first thing they did when you went in was to take a pair of scissors and cut off your tie. It’s a matter of culture. And wherever you go, that culture is obvious.
Is it obvious to the world that your culture is the culture of Christ? Is it obvious to the world that you’ve humbled yourself to Christ? One of the good things about baptism is that it forces you to humble yourself.
Before you cash a check at the bank, you’ve got to sign it. And before you get saved, you’ve got to get baptized. Why? Because God said so.
I love the example where Paul was in Ephesus:
- And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples,
- He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.
Now he was asking believers, not a caravan of merchants. He was asking people who believed in Jesus Christ. And he said, “Have you received that extra portion of the spirit, that holy annointing of God?”
- And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism.
- Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.
So church, we might not have all come from the same culture and lived the same life, but if we come to Christ, we’ve got to all learn the same basic fundamental steps.
- When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
The Bible says that there was a man who had learned something about God, but then he was taught more perfectly.
- For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith, which made silver shrines for Diana, brought no small gain unto the craftsmen;
- Whom he called together with the workmen of like occupation, and said, Sirs, ye know that by this craft we have our wealth.
- Moreover ye see and hear, that not alone at Ephesus, but almost throughout all Asia, this Paul hath persuaded and turned away much people, saying that they be no gods, which are made with hands:
I’ve been married thirty-five years. Pastor Paine and Debbie just celebrated their thirty-fifth wedding anniversary. You are married today because you made a commitment together. It’s not always been cheesecake and roses. But we never once felt that we couldn’t make this commitment and fulfill what we had committed. Church, it’s the same way when you follow Christ and really fall in love with him.
I could take you through the Old Testament and show you were it said that God would do this, and take you to the New Testament where Jesus did it. Where they asked him, “Jesus, show us the father”, he said:
- Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.
- Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?
If you look in the mirror, do you see anybody else? You brush your teeth and comb your hair and go about your day, and then you pass by a window and catch a reflection and gasp, “What was that?” You need to get a good look at yourself and your faith, and say “Do I look like Christ?”
I can show you in the Old Testament where it says “They shall look at me whom they have pierced,” and we know they pierced Christ. He didn’t come to change the law, but to fulfill it. Church, we come here to learn these things so we can go out and share them. You’ve got to make an active commitment: believe, get baptized in Jesus’ name, and then live that repented life. And if something happens like a soda levitating into your lap making you sear, you’ve got to pull over and say “God, I’m sorry.”
I heard a song on the radio saying “I’d sell my soul for one night with you.” Church, the world doesn’t think much of your spiritual well-being, does it?
- For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away?
You’ve got to cherish your relationship with God like I cherish my relationship with my wife. I remember being somewhere with Pastor Paine and his wife, and some guy came up and said to her, “Yo, mama, what’s happening?” He said right away, “She’s not your mother.”
If you’re in Christ, you’ve got to let people know. You’ve got to live that committed life. If you’re in the Navy, you can’t wake up in the morning and decide to be a civilian. Church, sometimes the devil will try to tell you that you just don’t want to live for Jesus.
Noah built the ark just the way God told him to build it. When the rains came, the boat floated, and the Bible says that eight souls were saved by water.
- Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.
- The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:
Jesus ministered to thousands, yet only a hundred and twenty were in the upper room. He healed ten lepers, but only one returned to thank him. We go our and preach the message but few people receive it.
The Bible says that we’ve got to be able to give an answer of the hope within us. How? By doing exactly what Peter and Paul and John and Philip did: by expounding the message of salvation. It’s got to be important to you. I’ve read many books in my life; some I couldn’t get into and others I couldn’t put down. How many of you have read the Bible?
Mrs. Davis, you’ve been working in the kitchen for a long time. And oh, those rhubarb pies! But she doesn’t need a recipe card. Why? Because she’s done it and done it and done it and done it. I go and bake a cake and I’ve got to look at the box for every step. It amazes me, watching those chefs that just throw things together and it turns out right. Sometimes I follow all the steps and my cake still doesn’t turn out right.
Church, you’ve got to follow the word of God and put it into your life. Our ministry is all about you knowing the word of God. It’s about you knowing, so that when you’re in the middle of the Oceanview or in the middle of traffic, you have the word of God. I’ve run out many times in the middle of Oceanview to help plug up people’s bloody holes from being shot, stabbed and run over by the bus. And you’ve got to have an answer.
We’ve got Bible study booklets available:
- The Bible
- The Holy Ghost
- Water Baptism
- The Godhead
You don’t even need to buy them; you can just pick them up and study. We have people who love God and love you and they’ve taken the time to categorize things. They want to see you saved. They want you to make it into heaven. These things are important. Because once you start reading those things, you’ll find more and more. My first Bible was so marked up and underlined and highlighted that it fell apart.
Church, you’re saved because you’re living a life every day that is pleasing to God.
There was a man who went through boot camp and went into Mary’s Tailor Shop and bought a chest-full of ribbons because he thought they were pretty. He was pretty impressive until that first-class got a-hold of him. He was in the brig the same day.
Don’t just carry your Bible under your armpit. God wants the real deal. Every one of us can live a spiritually powerful life. It’s just a matter of choice.
Pastor Paine told me a story this morning that I thought was so funny, because I’ve experienced it:
> Johnny, get up!
> I don’t want to get up!
> Johnny, you’re the Pastor. Get up!
Church, be saved, and be able to prove it: to yourself, first of all, and then to the others around you.