In my neck of the woods, our local Christian talk radio station is sponsored by my Church. The station is KWVE, which can be found on the web also.
When I wake in the morning, I can listen to snippets of the sermons as I do my morning chores.
Two exceptionally good sermons had two thoughts that really stuck with me today.
Thought 1: Washing In Scripture
Jon Courson has been talking about the intricate details of the Levitical law. If you thought this was borning, Jon keeps it very engaging. He truly is a talented speaker. Today, he was talking about how all the laws really can be used both as situational laws with the nation of Israel as a Theocracy, but they can also be used as metaphors for the Christian life.
Today, he spent time on the metaphor of the washing of the hands as something which was done as something to keep yourself separate from sin. He then went on to say that the scriptures were referred to in the Bible as being water.
He then went on to say that he doesn't understand it, can't quit grasp why, but he has noticed that if we wash our minds in scripture, we are able to handle temptation better. By the very act of read scripture, our brain mysteriously sort themselves out. People that have been unable to overcome temptation and sin in their own life, with a constant dose of Bible reading will find themselves better to resist the devil.
Now, I won't go into details, but from time to time I do not have a sinless imagination. While I am not perfect, I have noticed that I have worse problems when I am not on my path of reading through the Bible every year. When I heard this statement, I couldn't have agreed more from the results in my own life.
Scripture is like a magic stream of water to clean our mind. And hearing other people preach it, just doesn't have the same effect as reading it yourself.
Thought 2: The Lord Doesn't Work On Our Time
The second thought came in a sermon from Chuck Smith. Chuck is 79 years old. He has a church of 20,000 people. He is known nationally. His work has kicked off the entire Calvary Chapel movement that has influence untold thousands of believers.
It is hard to imagine his impact on Christianity over the last 30 years.
Yet, in the sermon today, where he was talking about getting in front of God, he related about his start. He said that he had 17 dry years of no results. The denomination that he was in simply seemed so wrong.
He said that his wife and him had basically retreated from mainstream churching, and had climb into the idea that they would just be doing some home Bible studies. Yet, it was out of this "giving up" of the big Church idea that the entire Calvary Chapel movement sprung.
It was when he was at the very lowest that the Lord started him on his most exciting path.
The issue is that we want to see nice forward progressive in whatever we do. We want to see 10% today, 20% tomorrow, and 30% the following day. However, the Lord doesn't work like that.
The Lord tends to work like the following:
1. You get a vision and/or a goal.
2. You work at that vision or that goal.
3. You don't really get anywhere.
4. You are almost at the point of giving up
5. The Lord supernaturally turns it around and restores you to the original vision
This pattern repeats itself in the Bible over and over.
1. Abraham can't have a son
2. He does something stupid like "trying to help God out"
3. This turns into a big mess and a family rivalry
4. God eventually fulfills his promise via Sarah
Even Christ is the same:
1. God promises a savior
2. We get Jesus
3. He gets crucified
4. God fulfills his promise via resurrection
This same pattern happens in our life.
We just need to look for it.