See video here.
Well, good morning everyone. And we are picking up in Leviticus chapter 19, if you want to turn there. And just reminder that after the second service, we’re having a spaghetti dinner for our youth. And there’s a youth conference that’s coming up. And so we’d like to be able to supplement the cost for some very young people. And it’s $5 a person. And if you have a family of four or more, it’s $20. So, and if you with families of 6, 7, 8, it’s good deal for you. Father, we come before you in Jesus name. We are so thankful for the fact that you have given us your Holy Spirit. You have not left us alone as orphans, that you have filled us to overflowing with the spirit of love, your love, Lord, that we might be able to take that love and spread it around. And so I asked Heavenly Father as we break open these portions of Scripture, That it would encourage us speak to us, and direct us, Lord, that our feet might walk exactly where you want them to go. And that we would be doing exactly what you desire us to do. I pray, Father, that we would come to understand that it’s not about religion, it’s about relationship. It’s not about do’s and don’ts. It’s about love. And so father come and anointed us, me to minister to and speak to these your precious people. I pray in Jesus name. Amen. Amen. You know, Thursday, via and I went to the new hope Family Service banquet that they had at drivers village. And their keynote speaker was, well, young woman to me. I don’t know how old she was maybe 40. She’s young to me. And she was an attorney who’s actually argued cases against the Supreme Court, and quite a well qualified young woman and I’m not going To get into the whole thing she shared, but the bottom line is this. And she said, Make no mistake about it. The government is trying to stamp out Christianity. When they pass laws, they pass them in order to inhibit anyone from sharing their faith. You know, whether it be the guy who refused to bake a cake for same sex couples, or in the state of California, their clinics, their their new hope clinics, you know, their Christian faith based faith based clinics had to have a big sign in the window saying that you could get an abortion for free by the state. They had to have that in their window. And they’re just trying to stamp it out. But anyway, they argued it before the Supreme Court and actually a liberal justice is the one who made the final decision in in their favor. In other words, they said no, the that wouldn’t be required. And his whole point was that he sees that as is a concerted effort to stamp out a faith, you know, to stamp out a belief system. And the thing we have to understand that is and always has been Satan’s desire. And the only thing that stands between Satan having victory over this world is you and I filled with the Holy Spirit. We’re the ones who are able to stand that gap between complete immorality and satanic, you know, endeavors and the truth. And so while we are still in this world, we are to be a lamp. And we’re to be a bright lamp were to be the fragrance of Christ. And so as believers you might think, well, I’m just one person.
Well just take the stone wall was made up of individual stones. You take one stone out the walls weekend, and the Christian family is made up of individual believers and you are So important, you might not think that you have that great a job to do. But every little light you shine, wherever you might be, every little thing you say, for the gospel of Jesus Christ is doing an effective work. And so, as we look into this portion, I think it relates to what we’re going to be talking about. I think it’s going to encourage us and even all the more, to be holy, as He is holy. Now, there is a form of holiness and perfect holiness that only God possesses. We all know that absolute perfect holiness because holiness is his very nature. But there is a holiness that we as believers are called to strive to. It is believing and striving to obey his commands because all of his commands are good. All of his commands are true. And the best thing for our life is to be obedient to Him. And so we have to understand Dead. It’s our testimony that is in complete agreement with God and our endeavor and desire to live according to His Word. That’s what constitute constitutes holiness. You and I will never ever in this life be able to achieve perfect holiness only Jesus was perfect. But we can strive after being in fellowship with God we can strive after being in fellowship with other believers. We can strive after what’s called individual holiness, being obedient to his word. You know, in First Samuel, chapter 15, verse 22. And remember, Saul disobeyed God by trying to offer a sacrifice when it was only it was only Samuel, who should have offered the sacrifice to the Lord. But he wanted to do things his way thinking it was the best. And when Samuel came, Samuel reviewed King Saul with these words in First Samuel 1522 says Behold, and whenever you see behold, in in the Bible, especially in the King James, or New King James, I use the term Behold, the American Standard does as well. It means pay attention. snapchats behold, Behold, I didn’t has that kind of an intense me. Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than fat of lambs. So the best thing we can do is to be obedient to the Word of God. And we always have to remember, he, the Lord always has our best interests at heart. The Lord doesn’t give us commands to make life tough form. You know what, I’ve got a command I’m going to throw out there that will really make it difficult. Every command he gives is for our benefit is for our well being for our encouragement. So I’m doing Leviticus picking up on the big Leviticus chapter 19 and verses one through 819 verses one through eight And the Lord spoke to Moses saying, speak to all the congregation of the children of Israel and say to them, You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God and holy. Every one of you shall revere his father and his mother and keep my SAVVIS. I am the Lord your God. Do not turn to idols, nor make for yourselves molded gods. I am the Lord your God. Notice how many times he says, I am the Lord your God. And if you offer a sacrifice, or a peace offering to the Lord, You shall offer it of your own free will not force not someone that you feel obligated you know to do something you feel obligated to do, or people are pushing you to do have your own free will you make this offering. It shall be eaten the same day you offer it and on the next day and if any remains until The third day it shall be burned in fire. And if it is eaten at all on the third day, listen, it is an abomination. It shall not be accepted. Therefore, everyone who eats it shall bear his iniquity, because he has profaned the hallowed offering of the Lord, and that person shall be cut off from the people. Well, pretty serious portion of Scripture. man like you to turn to First Peter. We’re going to compare something here. First Peter chapter one. And will be picking up in verse 13. First Peter chapter one, and picking up in verse 13.
First Peter 1:13, therefore, gird up the loins of your mind. That’s interesting. In other words, our mind is battlefield, we have to gird it up, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ, as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former loss is in your ignorance. But as he who called you is holy, you also be holy and all your conduct. And then in verse 16, he’s quoting this portion of Leviticus we just read, because it is written, be holy, for I am holy. holiness has always been the Lord’s plan for his people. In a fusions chapter one, verse four, it says, just as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love. Now, notice, it says before him in love, because you and I cannot attain in this Life, to absolute perfection to absolute perfect holiness. But it’s our love for him and our desire to be obedient to Him and recognizing his love for us, that allows us to seek after him with all of our heart, and to have what some people call personal holiness. I desire to serve the Lord. You know, the thing we have to understand is the law demanded and demands, what it’s not capable of giving. The law demands perfect holiness, and it can’t give it because no man can attain to perfect holiness, only one. Jesus Christ came into the world not to abolish the law, but to fulfill it. He was the only one who fulfilled it perfectly. But yet you and I can have what is called a Christian perfection or a personal holiness or our desire is to follow the Lord is to obey His Word to follow After his commands, because we have to understand, God has given us grace.
You know what grace is? I can start over again. I’ve blown it. I’ve made a mistake. I can start over again. You’ve heard me share a verse that I love, you know, from proverbs though a righteous man. Notice it says righteous, the way righteous man falls seven times. He rises again, but the wicked fall by calamity. So the point is that, what does it mean to be righteous? What does it mean to be holy, you get back up. You fell, you made a mistake. You tripped, you’re down on the ground. You get back up. Falling can be embarrassing, but the fact is, you get back up. little funny quick. You know, we have an adult dinner night out once a month, and one time we’re going to place in downtown Syracuse and I was walking across the road. It was kind of a night, and I stepped into a pothole. And I fell. And you know, when you’re getting old, because when you’re young and you fall, everybody laughs You know, when you’re old in your fall, everybody’s like, it was funny to this guy rode by on a bicycle just as I fell. And he goes, so um but the point is, it was embarrassing, and I could have just stayed down there. But I got back up. I was really looking forward to that pizza. But anyway, I got back up and we, we moved on. And that’s the point. When you fall, it can be very embarrassing. It can be humiliating, even if you’re the only one who knows about it. It’s embarrassing and humiliating to yourself, how could I have done that? But the Word of God is telling us to get back up. That’s what holiness is. You don’t stay wallowing around in the mud. You get back up. I would dare say every single one of us And I mean myself as well, has had those times where we feel so far from the Lord, where we feel like Oh my word, how did I get to this place? I feel so discouraged. I feel like that’s when we really need to cry out and call out to the Lord. And you know, to cry as it’s very simple. Jesus helped me and he will.
I don’t know how many of you have ever read the allegory Hinds feet high places. And it’s taken from Ecclesiastes is to missionary wrote the book. And it’s an allegory about much afraid, and she’s trying to learn to have Hinds feet to be a good Christian. And after she got saved, he taught her that whenever you’re in trouble, just caught my name. And so she’d be under all kinds of attack and she would say, Shepherd help me, and instantly. instantly. instantly. He They’reall we have to cry out is Shepherd help me, Jesus help me, and he’ll be there. So understand holiness is not the fact that you never make a mistake. holiness is the fact that you are seeking after Jesus and you get back up. And you follow on on that path. Let’s look at what the New Testament tells us in First Corinthians. And I’m going to read from First Corinthians 10, and second Corinthians five.
First Corinthians first, first, first Corinthians 10:31. Therefore, whatever you eat, or drink, whatever you do, do it all to the glory of God. Point this being made here is whatever you’re doing, do it to the glory of God. And remember, when Peter was up on the roof, praying, and a sheet came down from heaven, It had all kinds of unclean things in it, and a voice from heaven. God said to him, Peter, take me and Peter, and this wasn’t the first time he said this. And it’s an oxymoron. He said, not so, Lord. This funny one thing you say to the Lord, Yes, Lord, yes. But he said, not so Lord. And remember when Jesus said he was going to go and be crucified, not so Lord, Jesus said, some Get behind Me, Satan. Wow. But anyway, so then, three times a sheet came down from heaven, and said, Take, kill and eat. And three times Peter said, not so Lord. Then finally the voice from heaven said, what I have declared clean is clean. Whatever we do, if we’re doing it unto the Lord is clean. So if you go home today, and you have a pork roast, it’s totally okay. It’s clean before the Lord. But the point I’m getting at is that every every single person lifestyle is exactly the same. Not every single person has the freedom or feels freedom to do this or that. Just as long as it’s not against God’s word, and you have the liberty from Jesus, it’s clean to you. You follow what I’m saying? But that’s how religion develops when you start having all these attitudes. You know, for instance, there are some some denominations if you’re a man, and you don’t have your top button, or you guys don’t have the top button in your, in your shirt button, you’re not holy. And that’s not Baptist. It’s another group. I’m talking I actually used to be part of it. But anyway, you’re not holy. In other words, they would come like for instance, if you’re a woman, in this one denomination that I’m thinking of, if you’re a woman, you can wear stockings, but it has to have a seam in it. You can never cut your hair if you’re a woman. The point I’m getting it all my man made rules and regulations. And they will will not only weigh you down, but it distracts you from what it really means to follow Jesus. You can run hard after Jesus. You know, the Billy Graham crusade. Remember, they used to sing that song just as I am without one plea. Jesus takes you just as you are. Now, he doesn’t leave you there. But he takes you just as you are. We need to allow him to do the work in us, and that is holiness. And then in Second Corinthians 517, it says, Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, old things have passed away behold, all things have become new. And to be a new creation is not something that we work up. It’s a miracle of God. It’s been born again. Like when a baby is born. You know, Jen has the privilege of delivering babies. I mean, nothing more beautiful. A new life, a new life.
When you’re born again, you have to understand it’s just as much of a miracle, a new life. You’re born again, you are a new creation in Jesus Christ, Joel’s God. Now, just like a baby has to be trained and encouraged, the Bible talks about we start off with milk, we start off then baby food. And then finally we have, you know the meat of the word. But we need to be encouraged to grow in the Lord. And if we make a mistake, that’s where God’s grace comes comes in. Otherwise, we couldn’t keep growing. Now, how do you know if you’re new creation? Okay, relations. Turn to that with me. Chapter Five. Relations, chapter five. And we’re picking up with verse 22 relations 522 glaciers 522 through 26. We’re going to can be reading starting with relations 522 but the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control. against such there is no law. And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the spirit, let us walk in the Spirit, let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another. So this makes it very clear what it means to walk in the Spirit. And once again, we’re not talking about perfection, but we’re talking about where your heart is, you know, it is a heart of love, of joy of peace, of long suffering, of kindness of goodness, and faithfulness. That’s what the Lord desires of us. Just one thing the Lord has desired of us. And that’s what he desires. of us. And so we as believers, knowing that he has our best good in mind at heart, we need to seek after these things without envying one another without not judging one another, by the same measure, measure, you judge others you shall be judged. Scripture tells us, so we have to realize it’s not a matter of do’s and don’ts. It’s not a matter of legalism. It’s always a matter of love. It’s not a matter of law, it’s a matter of grace, always in our walk with the Lord, because the very thing that the law provided was the knowledge of the fact that we’re guilty till proven guilty. But the reality is we have an advocate in Jesus Christ, who paid the full price of the penalty of the law which is death on our behalf, and has administered grace to us that we might walk in all grace now We have to ask ourselves, do we have this fruit of the Spirit? You know, we just looked at looked at the fruit of the Spirit love, joy, peace, long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control?
Do we have this fruit of the Spirit? Or at least is the blossom there somewhere? Do we have that? Because if we’re born again of the Spirit, then the fruit of the Spirit should be becoming evident in everything that we do. So we have to realize that the fruit of the Spirit can only come to those who are abiding in Christ. And we have an example that Jesus gave in the Gospel of john chapter 15, verse five, Jesus said this, he said, I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me and I in him bears much fruit for without me, you can do nothing. You know, some of you might have great barbers around Your house or whatever. And if you take a branch of that fine, and you cut it off and throw it in the ground, you’re not going to say, okay, start bearing fruit. Because all it’s all it’s going to do is weather and die. It has to remain in the vine in order to receive the nutrients and everything that is necessary for the blossom, and eventually for, you know, new grapes develop. So, if we’re not abiding in Christ, it’s impossible for us to produce fruit. But if we abide in Him, it’s impossible for us not to produce fruit.
For instance, you can go to an apple orchard. If you had an rebellious branch that was connected to the tree, that branch could say, if this is anthropomorphism, you know, it’s not real. But that branch could say, I’m not going to bear any apples. I’m not going to guarantee apples, it’ll bear apples, because it’s abiding in the apple tree. I mean, no believer is actually going to say I didn’t want to produce fruit. But the point I’m getting is it’s natural. It is the work of the vine, not the branch that produces the fruit. So it’s not something that you can work up. I’m going to, I’m going to be legalistic. And I’m going to do this and religious and do that. And I’m going to prove it to everyone that I have the fruit of the Spirit. Now you can’t do it, because it’ll fail you. But if you just abide in Jesus, Jesus, love you, Lord, I just want to be yours. I want to do whatever you want me to do. I want to go wherever you want me to go, Lord, just just have fellowship with me. The fruit is naturally going to develop and come forth.
We have to understand too, the fruit of the Spirit can only come to those who are humble before the Lord. And to be humble before the Lord is not some great secret or some difficult thing to figure out. Here’s what it means to be humble before the Lord. I can’t keep Can. I’m a sinner, he’s holy. All of my righteous acts are filthy rags. Isn’t that what Scripture says all of man’s righteous acts are filthy rags before the Lord. But he washes me clean with his blood with his holiness. So we have to understand, to be holy, is to be absolutely surrendered to the Lord. And one of the things that I think people make a mistake on is this, they think the fruit of the Spirit would be souls being saved. No. Only Jesus Christ can save souls. The fruit of the spirit that we have is your Roma of Christ is the fruit of God in us. And that will lead people to a place where they’re interested in the things of God and where they themselves might cry out to Jesus for salvation, but only the Lord says. You know, I’ve got two people. So you know, I saved 25 people last year. They should say to me, would you think your god I might say, I was able to introduce people to Christ. I was able to lead people to the knowledge of Christ. But I can’t save anyone. Only God can save. You know, with the sing that song Jesus says Jesus saves, only he can save. And yet we’re called to be his ambassadors. Now, it’s interesting in this portion because it talks about revering mother and father and also the Sabbath. And what’s interesting is it puts together he’s talking about, you know, being obedient to be holy. He’s talking about being holy. He’s talking about the Sabbath, and also being obedient to parents. Well, the thing we have to understand this is why being a good parent is so important. Let me just give you a little clue here. No parent is perfect. No parent is. But it doesn’t take away from being a good parent. You know what a good parent is, I love my children, I want what’s best for them. And I’m going to do everything I can to show them the way of Christ. I want to be a Christ example for them. I want to love them and encourage them and be behind him, then whatever they’re doing, that’s the kind of love that we need to have for our children. And if a parent has that kind of love, Jesus is telling us that’s an example. You know, if you can love your parents who stood behind you, and encourage you and and gave you the things that you needed, the nutrients and so forth, how much more should you love me? How much more should you love the Sabbath? You know, we think of the Sabbath. Is that a holy day of obligation? By golly, you better be in church every Sunday, you’re committing to mortal sin and you’re going to go to hell, at least purgatory. You know, we can’t do that. The Sabbath is a gift from God. I don’t come to church because I have to. I come to church because I want to. And it’s not just because I’m the pastor, I felt that way before the Lord called me into the ministry, which is so far back, I can’t remember, but anyway, I’ve always felt that way. I want to be with God’s people. And that’s why it talks about honoring the Sabbath, because the very purpose of the Sabbath is to be in fellowship with the Lord. You know, the worship team comes up and we sing in unison together. We’re worshiping God together. It’s so beautiful. And then hopefully the pastor is breaking open the word in such a way that ministers to our heart, that’s what the Sabbath is all about. Now, what does it mean in this portion when it’s talking about when you offer a sacrifice has to be free well has to be from your heart first, and you can eat it the first day. You can eat it the second day. But if you read it the third days in the automation, you need to get rid of it. You need to, you know, you don’t eat it third day. Well, what it’s talking about here, because it’s related to the Sabbath and to worship. Our worship has to be fresh brothers and sisters. Have you ever heard people say, you know, back in 19, five when I was first saved, and I did this, and I did that, or people say, last year, I was at this conference and I was worshiping God, guess what? It’s an abomination to him now. You can’t live on yesterday’s worship. Your Worship has to be fresh every day. His mercies are new every morning. Our worship should be new every morning. I’m thankful for Jesus every day. Thank you, Jesus for saving this wretched soul of mine. Thank you, Lord. It’s not a past tense. It’s a present tense. That’s the kind of worship we need to have needs to be new. Now I have found that when I tried to stand on old worship, I end up getting discouraged. I end up tripping up, I end up getting a bad attitude. I don’t know, I’m not going to ask you raise your hand, but I’ll raise my hand. Have you ever had a bad attitude? Have you ever had one of those times where you saying I don’t know, God, I’m not worthy. I don’t know why? Well, he already knows you’re not worthy. And he’s the one who’s providing everything anyway. But it’s a matter of just having new worship. It’s an amazing thing that you could be, you know, down in the pit, that you start worshiping the Lord, and how quickly you will come up out of that pit.
Start reading his word. I can’t encourage you enough. Brothers and sisters, how important it is to get into the Word of God is the only time you’re looking at Word of God is when you come to church. That’s not Enough. If the only time you’re looking at the Word of God is because you have some kind of a pep talk to get into the Word of God like I’m doing right now. That’s not enough. You want to get into the Word of God because it is the Word of God. If you ever read the Bible and you think, Wow, Oh, right, here’s the answer to my problem right here is the direction that I need for my life. The Word of God is awesome. It even is able to discern between the thoughts and intents of the heart. How amazing is that? I can’t even do that. But the Word of God can. And so I encourage you worship the Lord, fresh every day, be into his word, praise Him, spend time in prayer. And don’t forget to come to church. It’s a time that we gather together for no other reason than to collectively worship the Lord and to praise his name. Father, I come before you in Jesus name and I thank you so much for Your Word and for the gift of worship for the gift of, of your Holy Spirit. And I pray Father, that as new creations we would live as new creations, and so, Lord, help us to take this portion of Leviticus and recognize that there is a holiness that we can strive after holiness to comes from grace and mercy. And I pray, Father, that you would work this in our heart, I pray in Jesus name, Amen. And Amen. You know, we have communion once a month. And one of the things that’s wonderful about communion is the fact that it’s a sacrament. There’s only two sacraments. For New Testament believers, you know, we’re not obligated to all the law. You know, we’ve been freed from that. But there are two sacraments. And in order for something to be a sacrament, it had to have been instituted by Jesus Christ, and participated in by Jesus Christ. Two things Jesus, you know, participated in and taught all believers to do with baptism. And so after you’re saved after you’re born again, after you’re a new creation in Christ, it’s important to have an opportunity to get public testimony. In Romans it talks about going under the waters like dying to self and coming up this testifying your new creation. The other sacrament that Jesus gave was communion at the Lord’s table. He said, as often as you eat of this bread and drink this cup, do it in remembrance of me. And so a sacrament is something that Jesus Christ instituted for us as a reminder of His love. And when we participate in this sacrament in remembrance of him, what we’re doing is saying, Lord, I know it’s you. It has nothing to do with me. I couldn’t where I couldn’t touch no way I could ever achieve even a small fraction of my salvation. You did it all. You paid the full price.
My blood is guilty. You were innocent, and yet you hunger naturally. And you bled, and you died, so that my sins might be forgiven. And then, not only did you die for my sin, but you rose again, that your sacrifice is a living sacrifice, and that in you, I am a living sacrifice before God, I belong to him. I’m Jesus and his possession.
And so, we’re told in Corinthians, whenever we eat of this bread and drink of this cup, we’re proclaiming the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. His death and resurrection is the central theme of our faith. Our sins have been forgiven, and they’re eternally forgiven in his resurrection. And one day you and I shall be caught up together to meet the Lord in the air there we shall be with him forevermore. What a beautiful promise that is. And so as we pass out the unleavened bread I almost was afraid to catch this on fire. And then I forgot it’s fake. But you know, in the night he was betrayed, Jesus took unleavened bread and it was that that whole week is fat of Passover is called the Feast of Unleavened Bread. And the reason unleavened bread was used as leaven represents sin. So unleavened bread represents sin being removed. In fact, during the Seder, when the Jews are preparing for the Passover dinner, they actually go to the house with feathers trying to sweep up any any breadcrumbs, anything you would have living in it. And it’s representative of allowing the Holy Spirit sweeps in from our heart lives. And that’s why Jesus when he took the unleavened bread, he said, this represents my body. It’s broken for you. Do you understand. He did it for you. He did it all for you and for me. What a blessing. So we’re going to pass out the elements and we take him together. And so we’ll wait until everyone receives it and then we’ll take it together. So brothers. It’s funny we went into the Wegmans in James Street next for Matsa. They didn’t know what we’re talking about. We went to the segments and witness for Matson. They showed us right where it was.
You have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. No sin shall be accounted to you, Jesus took it all. And therefore, Take and eat and drink and be so thankful to your God.
Thank you Jesus for the sacrament and the reminder that it is. And I pray, Lord, that You would cause us to leave this place, seeking after your righteousness and holiness, that we might be your witness everywhere we go spreading the fragrance of Christ. And I pray in Jesus name, amen. Amen. God bless you, my friends.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai