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A Knowledge of Evil

Marc Swearingen

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Recorded

  • February 21, 2009
    3:00 PM
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today I'd like to discuss the subject called a knowledge of evil knowledge of the do you have a knowledge of evil you know years ago I can remember this is probably about three or four years after I dedicated my life the Lord maybe maybe a little bitch and maybe not quite so long but I can remember leading up to my conversion I was a movie addict I had a fast-moving library PG PG-13 rated R and a bunch of motorhead favorite actors that I would try to collect all of their movies but I probably had two or three hundred videos in my collection and when I came to Jesus God he convicted me basically that I needed to surrender that and get rid of those videos because of the time involved because of the fact that I was familiarizing my mind with evil and so I gave them up now fast-forward to this point in time that I just mentioned one time I was getting ready to go to a camp meeting with my future wife and her family and our washing machine broke in our house so I had to go down the night before we relieved to a laundromat and do my laundry and they had television in this laundromat and it was playing a movie rated R movie that I've seen in my prior life so to speak and I was curious you know like walking around the tree of knowledge so to speak I like calling a glimpse of this movie and soon I was being drawn it was like it was a magnet is drawn me to this the spectacle and God was speaking to my thoughts you know recently warned me look I've given you victory don't really acclimate your mind to evil again but you know that Nepal was very strong as I found myself wondering around the tree watching a video fold the laundry and just curious and I got to the point where my laundry was all done but the movie wasn't over and so I got into my car and I began to drive home it is a line you buy I just buy this this place called the movie Gallery Inc. and the Paulus is pulling me and I really want see how that movie ended in the log was working with me every step of the way look don't do this don't snapshot evil in your mind began but I pulled into the parking lot rent movie went home watched the rest of it then got up and went to the camp meeting but you know what that one decision we opened Pandora's box and to this very day I have to really watch myself when it comes to media not never been involved in any type of addiction it's inappropriate as far as videos of you understand say but I'm talking about worldly movies that are rated R and maybe even PG and PG-13 I just really struggle with that whole medium and so I have to really watch myself and as a result my wife and I are very careful in what videos we'll allow our kids to see because we do not want to replicate that addiction in our children because I got our genes but I really acclimated my mind to evil again and friends what we need to realize is that when we dabble in things that it that were once forbidden we real way can the old nature again that should be dying and starving okay and I'm afraid that a lot of times week we dabbled too much and we break down the barriers of our spiritual defenses and again we acclimate our minds the love sin and we need to realize that Jesus came to deal with sin and Jesus needs the deal without an office so that he can prepare us for a similar society where sin will never ever again around as a statement written back in eighteen eighty one the statement goes those who venture to indulge in a known sin will be more readily overcome the second time the first transgression opens the door to the tempter and he gradually breaks down all resistance and takes for possession of the said Adel the soul they the people that break down the barriers have become so familiar was saying that they no longer perceive its heinous character you see friends again we need to make sure that we are not really gaining a knowledge like to say also that again these are probably things rowdy no but the human mind records everything it's like a digital camera or DV camcorder it is said by what we think what we see and what we hear and if we thanks see and hear evil it becomes attracted to evil and condition the desire evil as a result we become desensitized and dumbed down to the sinfulness of sin when we dabble in sin barriers and defenses are broken down and it becomes easier over time to indulge less and less guilt some of you might play the guitar heard me say this before but when you first start playing you know the fingertips are a sensitive and you never ask exactly hurt when you're learning to hold down the string for the NAFTA while the chalice you don't always feel that pain anymore to soon there hardened over and it's the same thing when the knowledge of evil if we indulge our conscience becomes seared and then we begin the process of going down the road of hardening the mind against God there's another statement that says what a person once neglects ACV invitations the reproofs and the warnings of the spirit of God 's conscience becomes seared and the next time he has admonished it will become more difficult to yield obedience we want to understand the all understand how the soul is destroyed it is not that God sends out a decree that man shall not be saved but man at first recess a motion of the Spirit of God and having once resisted it is less difficult to do so the second time less the third and far less the fourth and ultimately the statement says the sinner destroys himself of his own choices and so I don't want to be in your face too much today friends but what I wanted tell you is that we need to be careful that we are not strengthening our knowledge of evil we need to be careful that were not dabbling in for bitten things and so that we gain an intimate knowledge of things that God never intended for us that some of you may hurt my personal testimony on how it be age of ten after I was baptized and converted to Christ in another denomination other than the one I'm in now I was stating the temptation to go to a party and an God did everything he could to try to prevent me from going to that party because he did not want me to be familiar with evil but because I went to that party I expose myself at a very young age the many different temptations and as a result that one decision took me away from God for seventeen years until the Lord Merce mercifully graciously brought me back with friends please understand that sin is exceeding the sinful and God did not does not want us to gain a first-hand knowledge to be able right experiencing the conscious guilt that comes in separation from God and God wanted to spare our first parents of that very same thing he did not want them to experience that can't let that conscious realization that that the relationship with God had been severed and so we need to be very careful as far as understanding and knowledge of evil like to take a Genesis for just a moment Genesis chapter three Genesis the third chapter when I look at verses twenty two through twenty four Genesis chapter three twenty two through twenty four and the Lord God said behold the man is become as one of us can know good and evil and now lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat and live forever therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden to till the ground from whence he was taken so he drove out the man and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden cherubim 's and a flaming sword which turned every way to keep the way of the tree of life of course we understand this to be after sin entered our first parents were being banished from the Garden of Eden is very interesting that God drove them from the garden in place Angels there with flaming swords prevent them from having access to the tree of life so that sin would not be immortalized okay but I find it very interesting that in verse twenty two God says the man is become as one of Austin no good and evil you know one that was thinking about that statement by God man is become as one of us knowing good and knowing evil and I thought to myself wait a minute I know that God knows good but how does God know evil to the experience that Adam and Eve knew it I mean isn't God sinless isn't God righteous isn't it impossible for God to send because it goes very goes contrary to his very character what did God mean when he said man is like us knowing good and knowing especially evil the thought about that one come to the conclusion that God can possibly know good and no evil rather in four ways number one we know that God is omniscient right he knows all he sees all and he sees things before they happen right so one way that God knows evil is that he foresaw the rebellion of Satan he foresaw the entrance of sin itself in that sense he could no evil I'm a certain point of view number to the new Ibo directly through Lucifer 's rebellion because as a result of that rebellion one started to have any family one third have a family were expelled from heaven as a result of evil breaking out in a place of perfection so God knows it that way thirdly God also knows evil through the fall of man we just read a portion of writer Genesis three God experienced evil in a sense by losing the human race dissent but you know what there's a fourth way that God is specially knows evil and that is through the experience of Jesus Christ while under especially at the crucifixion God especially knows evil through the sufferings of our Lord Jesus Christ now if you'll go to Matthew just go to Matthew chapter twenty seven just for a moment Matthew chapter twenty seven verse forty six Matthew chapter twenty seven verse forty six I talked about this a little bit this morning when we dealt with a fake site question but it says in Matthew twenty seven forty six and about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice saying Eli Eli lama ocelot GYN that is to say my God my God why hast thou forsaken me you see right here at this critical moment Jesus was utterly abandoned and severed as far as his connection of course that was gradual starting in Gethsemane to the point where it reached the critical point on Calvary to where Jesus could not discern his father 's presence at all the only thing he could see was a broad chasm of sin if you will and it must've broke the father 's heart to have to turn his face from his suffering son and not be able to interpose to deliver him let me tell you something that must've broke the father 's heart that is a very acute way that God knows evil think about how close Christ was to his father during his earthly walk they will one I John chapter ten verse thirty I am my father I want well think about the separation made your word in the opposite direction to that one were talking about an infinite gap in God the father experience that as far as evil as consumer knowing my daughter Abigail was born she was born in a birthing center in Gainesville Florida and when she was born her breathing was very rapid okay the nurse midwife told me that thirty to sixty breasts and then it is probably average about a lot of medical profession is a public it's a better than me but her breathing was between sixty and ninety breasts a minute I guess she had transient tachypnea as I say that I see some had shaken some on the right track year but but they could not have been accepted for several hours they could not get that breathing under control so they had to take her to the hospital and so we went to the hospital and and they put her on what I call a frying pan or something they had one of these metal things you lay the baby on it it's heated so it keeps their temperature appropriate and it was sticking IVs into her and doing all the stuff and she's like nine hours all and him sit there right next to her and she's screaming and crying and she was looking at me given that at that agency was crying I said that wasn't going to make how they this does not feel that this could include down my throat of course I'm paraphrasing what she would say but she looked at me with those eyes like water to do something to help me and I could not do the disabled help my daughter you can think about what God must've went through God has a knowledge of evil Britain sisters believe me and he has that knowledge of evil through the sacrifice of his son just as I had no power to deliver my daughter so did God choose to not exercise his powered to deliver Christ because it needed to be that way otherwise we would be lost but think about what it must've done to the heart of God to have two indoor the oneness with his son being broken up let alone how much Jesus must've felt in fact I believe that Jesus according to the Bible actually became sin itself on the cross second Corinthians five twenty one right are yet made him to be sin for us he knew no sin we might be made the righteousness of God in him we see Jesus didn't just bear sin according to that text he actually became sin and that sucks that the subject that that we could chew on for a while and not even really scratched the surface on but notice brothers and sisters that when Jesus became sin the father could do nothing but allow that to happen at the plan of redemption was good to be successful and that most abrupt the father 's heart and here's another argument that that would seem to fit to really get us to think a little bit too versus earlier in second Corinthians five and verse nineteen says that God was in Christ reconciling the world and himself so how can God be separated from Christ on that while Jesus was on the cross and yet BN Christ reconciling the world while I believe that the father 's heart going through what his son went through was also crucified in the sense of heart and infinite love through the experience of Christ paid the price for our redemption that is how God knows evil not that he practices evil is a lifestyle but he knows it because with Christ they experience in when Jesus went through the cross of Calvary experience so God I cutely those evil and going a step farther God is all knowing from eternity past eternity future God transcends time and I believe in you may challenge me but I believe it Calvary is an ever present reality with God Christ is crucified afresh by every sin committed Angels are forced to watch sins because they must report them in the books of heaven every lost sinner and how will leave an empty place in God 's heart that was meant just for them and since they are lost misplaced I believe will remain void reach vertically that is how close God is with creation because creation is a visible expression of the love of the heart and mind of God and if any part of his creation is lost I believe that God will feel that void for eternity that is how God knows he whatever happens in heaven ringer affects the heart and mind of God every act good or evil is acutely and intimately felt by the heart of God the father there's a book called God 's amazing grace the beautiful beautiful book and on page one eighty nine of this book is an incredible statement it says God himself was crucified with Christ for Christ was one with the father feel give thought to the suffering that sin has caused our Creator the cross is a revelation to our dulls senses of the paying that from its very inception soon has brought to the heart of God every departure from the right every deed of cruelty every failure of humanity to reach his ideal brings grief to him are what world is a scene of misery that we cannot allow our thoughts to dwell upon did we realize it as it is the burden would be too terrible yet God feels it all not a size breed not a pain fell not agrees that Pierce is the sole but that the Rob vibrates back to the father 's heart in order to destroy sin and its results he gave his best beloved and he has put it in our power through cooperation with him to help to bring this scene of misery when an is a lengthy statement but the essences is that whatever happens God 's senses that is how God knows evil God has a very intimate knowledge of human again it's not that he lives or practices evil but he knows the sinfulness of sin because everything vibrates back to his heart and he does that and and he allowed Jesus to go through Calvary so that we don't have to experience that type of knowledge God wanted us that Ross of that knowledge brothers and sisters not even one student now despair rest of the knowledge of evil and he went through that to help us to realize that we don't need to know that sin is bad by indulging it but unfortunately curiosity killed the cat so to speak like like our first parents were curious we had curious and we have to know for ourselves but but but but for those of you who are parents think about how you your heart goes out to your children when you see them developing you and you see them in entering into teenage but all the stuff because I'm not there yet but I will be there Jesus carries but but think about how you see them being tempted to make decisions that will affect the rest of their lives that will all through the rest of their lives and are not wise decisions and think about how your heart goes out look I want to spare you of the mistakes that I made these consider this decision and think about how your heart goes out to your child will that's how God feels about us he does not want us to dabbling to send the notes in his evil he wants to spare so that knowledge he doesn't want us to open Pandora's box you know my daughter when she was little Abigail our oldest one when I just told you about being on the frying pan so to speak we had one of those lamps in our bedroom but it's very very hot and she's a walking a lot better than let's say this is the last years ago and I say honey don't touch that landfill burn you it's hot in Mexico and after a few minutes is like a casino hungering back around to see just Belgrade say that honey in and she even do the own your content stretches sometimes she's looking to go like this you know and I mean like down Gitmo closed on not doing what you said that questions only maybe eighteen months two years old or something honey yet he's telling you don't touch it you'll get burned into her should walk away and then pretty soon comes back around and I said okay she's got to learn it's all dad ha ha hardware need to trust what I say and don't take matters into your own hands you see that's how we always gone friends we need to trust for God says and not go down that path because invariably friends we are going to get burnt God wants to spare us of the knowledge of evil he went through that knowledge so acutely that he so desperately wants to spare us of opening Pandora's box and experiencing evil friends where you today have you let go of some things and reopen some things that maybe God wants to close up and you react when made your mind to some sin in your life maybe that God once gave you victory over but you resurrected because you curious again like I did with the movies that you react limiting them onto a knowledge of evil because you just let go and is God calling you back to make that recommitment is there some sin in your life that is strengthened itself over time it that God is saying you know what you have to lay that on the altar and give that up completely the act sneezed to be laid at the root because you can't date send brothers and sisters you got a break up with it completely neat clean break and talk about conscious premeditated sin now I'm not talking about sin that that that God has revealed young talk about conscious premeditated sin are you practicing something that you know God is saying put it away given the fact that God has an intimate knowledge of evil and wants to spare us of this evil is he calling you to surrender that again to him so he can take that evil out of your mind again you see friends I believe I really believe with all my heart we need to make commitments to surrender everything to God sins include because brothers and sisters in many ways we we've allowed our minds to deviate into areas that God is saying no no no no no no don't go down there because once you lower the gate pretty soon you're on the broad path and not on the map God is calling us back to the narrow path brothers and sisters he's calling us to stand up my faith and so you know what I am tired of these sins I want to surrender them and have victory and put them out of my life once and for all I believe that Jesus can give us the power to put away every known premeditated sin so that we can get back to the righteousness and holiness that Jesus wants to give us that he wants to infuse us with so that when we witness to others there's a heavenly influence that emanates from us so that we actually impact others because Jesus is able to use us because our hearts have had the Kings highway clear what is God saying to you right now you can regain your innocence again if you turn to God in our member when the movie of passion of the Christ came up I'm not here to condemn in others I believe in it and in some sense God gave got mightily use that movie even though I don't think that movies theologically correct but I remember when it came out now wanted to watch it and God told me look Calvary is special don't don't put your mind in the channel but I was curious as a series of events I ended up with my mind in that movie and and and I felt so violated after that because God wanted to keep Calvary special and no movie can portray the spiritual experience of Jesus through the site what we need to understand is that the second death that Jesus suffered is something that we must you want in the heart and mind that we cannot necessarily say because it's a spiritual experience and spiritual things are spiritually discerned after I watched that movie I felt violated NFL's open the gate and rebuke by the spirit of God that I allowed my mind to witness a lime and I had to pray before God and say God forgive me cleanse my mind and help me to keep Calvary in a special place in my heart is something that is holy ground of friends you may have something in your life right now you may have some send it that maybe God gave you get you over that youth reactivated yourself to Daniel mine maybe speaking to you right now and say you know what I can give you victory and remove that knowledge of evil if you will surrender that to me is he calling you to a commitment in some area is he calling you took to come to the point we you renounce sin because that's the power of the gospel that Jesus brings to us he wants us to come to the point where we are willing to make a clean break with conscious sending and conscious guilt and through his strength he can do it through his strength we are supernaturally enabled to do it but we have to submit to that that's the theme not been trying to develop all week but what is the Holy Spirit saying in your heart right now I mean deal truly with yourself don't play games with the spirit of God because God is speaking to your mind right now and and and as you take spiritually mature right now what is he calling you to make as far as a commitment on it I'm not good I'm an evangelist I'm not good appeals about God 's front awoke me to make more effective appeals but but but I'm really at the point now I just would rather ask a question not be around the bush where are we right now cool really has control of our hearts right now what is the ruling power inside of us I sure were on a growth path and work well when and where being sent I divided it as were walking with Jesus walking in the spirit and it's true that God can't reveal everything to us that one so we would be so overwhelming to throw in the power but you know what I believe every heart has a plate so to speak and this is an imaginary play where God has his revealed will on it and we know it because he's revealed to us and he sang what these are the things them requiring view right now in this present moment these of the known choices than asking you to bring into harmony with my will all I need you to do is make a decision to do it and then when those are under control in a minute add and bring some more stuff in that way your growth will be progress but right now in this moment of time as you look at your plate so to speak what is Jesus asking from you and and and and if you realize that what commitment are you willing to make for him when you consider what God the father and God the son went through through the Calvary experience on how they surely experienced evil to their very core how could we in good conscience continue to do the things that Jesus is crucified afresh by because God will never ask us to surrender something that he will not give us the strength to give up and with me it was movies in with me it's sports and by the way in what the Greek and Roman legacy the modern-day America is theater and sports I think about how influential those industries are in so those are the things that cannot have half Greek by nature up my my my biological father is this from roads he's a your bloody great thought about that in my gene the man I love wisdom and opportunity and one says the Greeks love learning and wisdom I love learning and wisdom I go to school forever my wife would let me but God in my characters addressing these issues with me what about you what decision are you willing to make right now so that God can remove your knowledge of evil in some area and if you think it's too great a sacrifice to surrender that to God think about what Christ did when he endured and eternal separation with his father shame on us for even questioning whether or not we would come and follow the feet across and say Lord take my sins away I'm sick and tired of doing things my way and fighting and resurrecting all these old habits so that I am entangled again in the cords of my sentence while professing to be the denominated people of God will you make a commitment today and if so are you willing to stand up and come to this altar you don't have to verbalize anything but is there something in your life right now by faith that you want to stand up and come to the altar and surrender before God right now I'd like to close this meeting with a special special consecration prayer through this altar call and as we close and and lay off heart before God I would like anyone who feels a burden to come forward and lay some issue in the life on the altar I'd invite you to do so at this time if there's anyone that would like to come forward and lay something on Neil praise the Lord Jesus Marx these commitments France and you don't even need to verbalize it but you and your heart known as God 's dealing with you you know what that is and I believe that God will bless your commitment doesn't matter how deep those sins are challenges Oregon can help you if you will consistently surrender that to him he'll help you overcome his or anyone else would like him for praise God I think we need a spiritual revival he meant me we need genuine spirituality and that can only come through total surrender to Christ and laying of sin on the altar because friends reality is the sin desensitizes us talk about again known premeditated calculated Cindy God wants us to give that up let's view father in heaven this afternoon we have been compelled by your spirit to make this commitment Lord lay the ax at the root helps cells to die and we know that must happen daily but were not guaranteed tomorrow we can go back in time to yesterday but we have right now and so we make a decision right now Lord to surrender ourselves to you take away our knowledge of evil take a the way the conscious guilt that comes from separation give us victory Lord so that we don't premeditate conscious actions that are a violation of your principles bring our lives in harmony with you will empower us by thy spirit to be livers of the life of Christ help us to be spiritual and not just religious help us not to compromise our conscience Lord but to be true to what you've revealed to us and in Lord if we do make a mistake help us not to run from you and in way a long time before we come to you but help us to fall on her face and say Lord Jesus forgive me lift me up and re- empower me let not discouragement paralyze our spirituality thank you for loving us Lord and for gaining the knowledge of evil in a sense that you took sin on your heart so that we don't have to understand bless us Lord and bless these commitments and be with us throughout the remainder this day Lord made these commitments be written in our hearts and may your Holy Spirit keep us faithful to them as our prayer in Jesus name amen

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