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1. Does the Truth Really Matter?

David Wright


Is the Bible really true or just a book of good stories. 


David Wright

Lead/Senior Pastor, Hendersonville SDA Church


  • February 18, 2017
    11:30 AM
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This morning we're asking a very simple maybe fundamental question why are you a Seventh Day Adventist. And we thought about that question hopefully you have your maybe a few here that say well I'm not but I think most of us would agree that that you are part of the Seventh Day Adventist Church you're a member in good and regular standing my question simply is how come. Why did you choose the Seventh Day Adventist Church. Well you get my belly come up with a host of reasons Is it because you were born into it this is just what you've always known this is comfortable. Maybe you like Adventist culture you say you know I just I love haystacks and where I go they don't know what it is but they ave this know what haystacks are they know how to build a good one. Is that your reason maybe you just like being different. You just think that everybody else is too mainstream So you want to go and Tory court your course your own is that the right chart your own path thank you I need help maybe it sounds education you say I like the school system the avenues edges showing that our school system is very good and we can find a school around the world and so I like that aspect maybe its the health message and we have a wonderful health message the annual fasces has certainly been a blessing to many of us. Maybe you think what Adventists are friendlier is that the reason. And we might even argue is that even true I don't know well they have nicer churches is that true I don't know that the reason that you chose me is them down as well Saturdays are more convenient than Sundays. You come up with a host of reasons I hope those aren't at the top of your list. And so we're going to be looking over the next five weeks at a series that I'm entirely in why I am a Seventh Day Adventist. Or why am I a Seventh Day Adventist and I want to get you thinking along those lines are we just another denomination. Or are we unique are we peculiar do we have a message that is relevant at this time a nurse history so it's going to be a five part series is going to be split up because there's other speakers coming on through as well but the question number one that we're going to look at today does the truth really matter we will look at that question. And a couple weeks we'll look at this next question isn't loving Jesus and nuff some might ask that thoroughly what makes you so special I mean can't I just love Jesus aren't you being overly legal listed and then you use words like like remnant and so on I just I don't feel comfortable with that. We're going to look at that number for fourth question what makes the devil angry. You have to wait to see what that's about and the number five What's wrong with being a cultural interest is that OK And so those are the five pieces that we're going to look at and we're going to unpack those as we go along and sold today we're just kind of getting started here and you might say well that's not the only reason and I hope that's not your only reason in terms of what I'm covering today but we have some other things we're going to be looking at as we go along but today does the truth really matter. A lot of people today say there is no such thing as absolute truth. Is that true. You know if we look here back in our own history John Harvey Kellog published in one thousand nine hundred three a book that was highly controversial called the living temple and in this book of course we know Kellogg was an inventor and many things but he was big into health and the idea was God lives in everything and. It's everywhere including first and foremost in you and so if you want to get in touch with the God in you you have to look within not without. At this idea of pantheism. The earth and all of life forms and processes are sacred we belong to them and they to us we are kin so is that idea that you hear for those of you that can remember Oprah Winfrey and and we talk about the power within if I can just get in tune with the power within. And we know that to be pantheism and so that created quite a stir within the amnesty people were divided on one side or another who are they going to follow. Until eventually it came to a head and Kellog left the church. And Sister right white right Sister White writes about this should choose my words better in volume one selected messages page two hundred in the book Living temple there is presented the alpha of deadly heresies. The Omega will follow and we will and will be received by those who are not willing to heed the warning God has given Now what's this Alpha and Omega they were I know the Greek alphabet what is a start with Alpha and what is it in with Omega So here we have something that's going to be very similar to this living temple this pantheism this center in in word and so on is going to come about again and if she refers to it as the Omega later on a few pages later she says libelled living temple contains the Alpha will alpha of these theories I knew the a mega would follow in a little while and I trembled for our people. I tremble for our people. You should know as. All this went on by the way that Kellogg was almost like a son to her she prayed for Kellogg's she wrote to Kellogg she engaged in every way that she could with Kelo. And I would say that example would be a wonderful example with us today as I believe we're starting to see this Omega apostasy. But these people that we write to mom or should we pray for them are you with me because I think they're sincere but they're sincerely wrong. And so we're going to look at that today but you know it's not something that is just impacting the Seventh Day Adventist Church we see it in the Baptist Church the Methodist Church the Church of God I mean on down the list the Catholic Church and our church as well this idea that if I'm going to really connect with God I have to focus on the sensory right it's about an experience. We had a ministers meeting recently that talked about the dangers of yoga and have a have in Christian yoga and holy yoga and undistracted worship friends if you really look at the background of yoga Well it's just stretching is just this well people may say that but if you really look into yoga the whole thing is about getting your body into a position and emptying your mind. Where you can be filled it's a very. Sincere retighten experience. It's not so much of the US faith the Lord so here you have people practicing yoga on the cross in the background and all these kinds of things yoga faith calm or whatever you find. They also love to practice communion now communion again is a good thing but they like that the taste they like candles they like all these types of things and nothing is really really based in scripture as much as we want the experience. Now granted God gives us some things to experience baptism by immersion we experience that. We participate in communion in this church. But when we practice commune in a way that is just all about the feelings and the emotions and everything else versus God's word and what it really symbolize what it truly means. So you've heard of these prayer labyrinth where people walk through and this is really complicated form of prayer that again is not found in Scripture if you don't find any mention of Paul or Peter or James or John or Jesus walking through a prayer labyrinth we'll find a mention of centering prayer. We don't find the mention of drumming or any of these things where we take maybe a word or two or a phrase out of the Bible and we repeated over and over and over in a chant as a way and a form of emptying my mind is a sound dangerous. Empty in my mind to allow God to speak to me in any way that he chooses to or wants to I think he has a very good method of speaking to us right here in His Word. But this idea I'm going to ignore that I'm going to disregard thoughts on a center myself and allow the Spirit to speak to me. Friends are more than one spirit. And the problem with all of this is that they mingle the religious with the secular and they they melt it all together and it gets very confusing it's like namely Jell-O. to the walls really hard to pinpoint and sometimes people describe just I was trying to put my finger on it I knew something wasn't right about it but I just couldn't figure it out. It has all kinds of names sometimes they hijack our terminology and our words and they change them around to mean other things. And they like to say you know we're very spiritual. But we're not religious. We like to feel coaster go we like to feel and sense his presence we like to taste and the touch and to go over and we do. ROSEN all this stuff but we're not so much into religious or what the Bible has a say or passages. This is Leonard sweet he says mysticism once cast to the sidelines of the Christian tradition and I would say for good reason. Is now situated in the post-modernist culture near where the center Oh my. In the words of one of the greatest theologians of the twentieth century Jesuit philosopher of the religion dogmatics Carl Rayner And he quotes him the Christian of tomorrow will be a mystic one who has experienced something or he will be nothing. Now is interesting Leonard sweet I have heard this guy present. Sadly he has come to. Meetings that I've attended that our church has put on seven hamsters to put on I remember standing next to somebody and I said Who's this guy. Ah the guy next to me says you haven't heard of Leonard sui He's incredible all he is oh yeah his books are amazing. That pastor friend of mine is no longer in ministry by the way. Here's another one by Henry now and. The book is called here and now living in the spirit says the God who dwells in our inner sanctuary is the same as the one who dwells in the inner sanctuary of each human being starts to sound a bit like Kellog if you will another one of his books the quiet repetition of a single word can help us to discern with the mind into the heart this way the simple prayer opens us to God's active presence. So I'm not looking for truth or not seeking out God's word in what it has to say on any given topic I just want to. The mind lower the thinking passout thoughts and allow God to speak to me. The sound dangerous to you in any way shape or form. Here's another one Brian McLaren. The Bible is not considered an accurate absolute or authoritative or authoritarian source but a book to be experienced and one experience can be as valid as any other Therefore your experience and your experience and your experience and this book here they're all the same they're all on the same plane they're all valid. Merci experience dialogue feelings and conversations are equated with scripture. So we find God in the conversation. We find God they speak all these weird terms we find God in the knowing. Of scripture just for knowing we find God in asking questions you listen to these guys and they'll say things like you know every day I wake up in the morning and I think is this whole thing a lie and I doubt and I question I'm just not sure but God's in the question. I'm just supposed to doubt I mean that's the beauty of the whole thing is that the whole thing is so allusive. And we say wow that's a deep thinker. That's amazing. I wish I could doubt question. Here his of a snake anywhere. This one's very concerning to me Super Soul Sunday you was the wrong thing a few weeks ago you know why Super Soul Sunday. Today this is soo monk kid there's a picture of her. Interview today I remember the event for the radiant mystery it was how I felt myself embraced by Goddess how I felt myself in touch with the deepest thing I am it was the moment when as playwright and poet and I don't. How to say that person's name put it I found God in myself and loved her I loved her fiercely. And then she continues the ultimate authority of my life is not the Bible it is not confined between the covers of a book is not something written by men and frozen in time is not from a source it is not from a source outside myself my alderman authority is the divine voice in my own soul period. This point you may be wondering why we're talking about this. In church. Because friends this is a super tsunami wave if you will sweeping across Protestantism and Adventists are not. Exempt from that I see my friends people that I care about and you pride could say the same that you care about getting caught up in this and the danger with this is there is no longer of thus saith the LORD need it in fact I don't want it I just have to to empty my mind and the spirit can tell me whatever it wants to and that's truth. How are we supposed to are we supposed to test the spirits and see if they're of God and how do we test them if not by God's word how do we know what truth is if we throw out God's word. Sorry you can see that. This is something in the AM This church is called I follow it's kind of small here says disciples resource for Seventh Day Adventists the I follow discipleship resource finally a discipleship train resource that pastors can really trust. Again my intent is not the throw anybody under the bus. But it concerns me that in this series of study guides that we have put out this Henry now and he has fourteen side tape. One book recommended one website recommended why. Brian McLaren has six citations five books recommended a total of twenty four times why. Richard Foster has three citations two books recommend a total of sixteen times website listed five times why. I don't have time to go over all the quotes I could find all these individuals that you say. What. A grand you probably could Polson start each of them said that sounds good and we could agree with we could say yeah that makes sense and that's what scares me. Is when a mingle just a little of the good with a little of the barrel going to put it together so people can say no this is good. My kids wrote to me the other day that I still remember when you told that children story about the cookies were dog. Remember me telling the story. Now the kids want to go see a movie and I had a bad heart in an over just a small part in this and this and this OK you go and play off think about it and Mama bake some cookies and she says Oh before you eat those. Just human you need to know that I would have a yard I took just a pinch. Of dog poop and it's in the cookies but don't they smell. Who have them. Letter sweet for citations one book recommended one website recommended why. So I can recognize a name and say oh yeah I saw had my discipleship he must be a good idea to read more of his stuff. They pass out his books at the one project left and right. Here's another one I like to pass out books and he write he has nine citations for books recommended toll of twenty one times and his website is listed why. My fear is because this is no longer enough. This was good for a time this was present truth for a time but now we're going to launch into something even better. New flung fields that's all centered in experience we're going to catch this wave we're going to ride it this is out of one of the parts of this I'm quoting from. One of these lessons one essential is meditation is meditation a bad thing no I'll show you a verse a minute you already know it to meditate on God's word right this refers to the mental practice of emptying the mind is if I found that scripture you know. When my wife tells me my mind is empty I take it as an insult but anyway. Mental practice of emptying the mind quieting the chatter of my thoughts and entering into mindfulness as if this is a deeper exist existence. I recommend doing it for two periods is not me talking it so don't misunderstand but as I recommend doing this for two times a day about twenty minutes in the morning again the evening I sit in an alert manner and cause trade on slowing my breathing distractions are noted and let go as I focus on inner quiet. Folks if you read the Bible if you read spirit prophecy this stuff is alarming and my fear is people aren't catching it because people aren't reading their Bibles and they're not reading the spirit prophecy. This inner quiet I get I didn't put it up here but there's another quote about how we focus on breathing and our breath I don't know anywhere in scripture or says I need to focus on my breathing. Joshua one eight this book of the law shall not depart from your mouth but you shall meditate in it day and night that you may observe and do according to all that is written in it we're supposed to meditate on God's Word not this home and a home and a home and I get that out get that out get that out. Let whoever spirit wants to pour in. Now I think the Devils dumb enough to give us terrible things the first time he's going to build some reporter with this practice don't you think. But then slowly the devil so patient he starts pulling us. Away. Here's another small hall read it to you. This was a retreat by somebody who presented it Fletcher not too many years ago so those who elevate the Bible to the status of divinity have invented a new religion is called Biblicist M I think he comes up with that word this religion is a rival to Christianity. So we can a hold and this is read tweeted by an amnesty we can uphold this a but you know I mean they're making it seem there's a dead Kadhimiya between Christ and His Word. Is there need to be a dichotomy between those two or is Christ embodied in his word. I mean the word is Christ Christ is His word this is his word and so they're not opposed to one another. How do we know about Jesus through his word how do we know His will and plan for his lie or life through His Word. But this idea of putting the Bible lower lower lower lower lower lower. Scares me. This is also an amnesty pastor I'm not going to say who it is many of your pride figure out exactly who it is I can tell you later but my intent is not to malign anybody but it says scripture is not truth Jesus truth. Scripture is not truth. Scripture is not truth. Oh somebody finally told me scripture is not truth Jesus truth and scripture merely speaks of him notice where this leads there is a difference and he shall be reveal in many odd and interesting places and sounds odd that sounds interesting that's where you'll find him. Are there greater revelations then Scripture Yes Jesus for one and the Holy Spirit now for another scripture is our God. To disappear. Again you might be saying they're saying then why get all worked up over this or see the big deal in that statement here what I think is the big deal about that statement is that this is simply a guide and I start here but then as I'm Guided I see some that is above this and it is Jesus and it's the Holy Spirit and so now this can start to go lower and lower as I'm looking not only to God's word and trying to see if this is truth but on the Holy Spirit Now tell me what's true. Service not the service it's actually Sunday or Friday or Wednesday says who says the spirit. How do you know that's what the Spirit says because I've experienced. As I've emptied my mind is communicated with me and I have no way to check this out. And your experience is valid just like my experience is valid and it's all about experience experience feeling feeling. Early. Let's get into God's Word can we do. John seventeen seventeen says this sanctify them by your truth and what's the next line. What did you say your word is truth. Absolutely. A man Romans ten seventeen faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God So how my going to build my faith and I know God's word. Another one second John one nine whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine that's another thing is that doctrine is thrown to the side as if it's a bad word don't talk to me about doctrine. Friends all doctrine is teaching. If we love Jesus don't we want to know everything that he tells us in this love letter. If we love Jesus don't we want to follow what he says because we love him no I don't want to know about your south I don't want to know what happens to be when they die I want to know what happens in time I just want to live in ignorance a little and it's all about Jesus. Doesn't make any sense whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine or teaching of Christ does not have God he who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the son doctor is not a bad thing it simply tells us who God is and his love and His will and his desire for us. John one one in the beginning was the Word and the Word was WITH God and the Word was God they're not opposed to one another. First John five seven for there are three that bear witness in heaven the Father the Word and the Holy Spirit and these three are One I find interesting that it calls Jesus the word they are the same. Revelation one thousand nine hundred thirteen now I saw heaven open and behold a white horse and he who sat on him was called faithful and true to we know who that is and in righteousness he judges and makes war his eyes are like flames of fire on his head where many crowns he had a name written that no one knew except himself and notice how he's referred he was close to the robe dipped in blood and his name is called the Word of God. Friends if you start reading this week your bible you're going to find this Everywhere everywhere everywhere I can't put them all up on the screen apparently. I can't read my Bible and I can't read other things because it would just all these other stuff would just jump out at me so I must be putting this aside and reading something in its place. How do I know if there's something in this place is of God without this standard. United States Supreme Court. Good we have there in the middle of that building on top. Moses with the Ten Commandments. You stop and think about this how do we know right and wrong. If there's no scripture if there's no truth. Well you're just not supposed to kill why who says. I might just kill you for saying that and if I'm bigger and if I'm stronger I'll just do it I mean really the atheists and the evolutionists and all these people if you want to just get away from Scripture altogether what makes something right and what makes something wrong you don't have anything one wife you miss and now I'm going to have ten well that's wrong says who. You should lie. Why not it's a survival of the fittest You're just upset because I took all your food you don't have anything. Without God's word you're right there is no truth there is no measuring standard. And we're all in bad shape second term of these three sixteen all scripture is given by inspiration of God it is profitable for doctrine for reproof for correction for instruction in righteousness so if I want to know what right is all about I have to look at all of Scripture. And continuous says that the man of God may be complete thoroughly equipped for every good work through this book. Man and Women are complete. I need some of this extra stuff over here and over that right here. Complete. Desire of ages one twenty one the only thing in our world upon which we can rely is the Word of God stop and think about their. Own think about this. Not just because it's a book but because it is in fact the word of God That's why you can rely on. So for a long time avenues have been known as people of the. Book. I tell you right the top of my list why am I something havingness because I want to follow this book. I don't want to have to make apologies just as God says it then I believe it that says. You had to be all in or just don't bother. John eight thirty one and thirty two then Jesus said to those Jews who believe in Him If you abide in my word. Abide where in my word you are my disciples indeed and you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free. We don't want freedom take us back to Egypt. We like the food better there. Don't tell me the truth. And sometimes the truth is hard to accept it's true. But why does God give us truth. Because he loves us he cares for us he has our best interests in mind OK we have to go your word I have him in my heart that I might not sand against you she is one has to hide his word in our heart and that Jesus did this very thing Matthew for when he was being tempted in the wilderness he answered and said to the first impatient of the devil he says it is written second time it is written third time it is written he had hid the Word of God in his heart and that's how you overcame the devil Why do you think the devil wants us to put those lower lower lower because this is where the power is. And so he says Man shall not live first temptation by bread alone but by every one word that proceeds from the mouth of God This is power for if you need power it's in a word claim a promise overcome the Devil Hill flee from you. I feedin six seventeen and take the helmet of salvation the sort of the spirit with is the Word of God No Sometimes that's a two edged sword sometimes it hurts sometimes it steps on my toes. But I need it. Mark eight thirty six thirty eight we're going to look it up but we're running out of times I was going to put on the screen for you is what I read thank you and you know. What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and lose his own soul. Or what will a man gain in exchange for his soul. For whoever is ashamed of me and my words. Pester him point this one out to me this week. He's a plethora of information by the way. For whoever is ashamed of me and my words. Well I was going to turn the Bible doesn't say that I'm going to rip that part out and then the species show. And this adulterous and sinful generation of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his father with the holy angels. Christianity is simply living by every word that proceeds the mouth of God we are to believe them and live in Christ who is the Way the Truth and the life we have faith in God we believe His Word we trust and obey God we keep His commandments and we love God when we love his law all of those are valid God's word. Potluck smelling good fellowship luncheon so our. First job for one beloved do not believe every spirit but test the spirits whether they are of God because many false prophets have gone out into the world I hope each and every Sabbath you go back and you test the spirits tests. The preachers test the books that you're reading by God's Word is that what is this when they ended the quote there were they deceiving people because it actually goes on to say something quite different are you testing. By God's word. Of course if we throw it out we have nothing to test with I say twenty to the law of the testimony if they do not speak according to this word it's because there is how much light in them no light. No light. So while they have this. Because truth matters to me. There is such a thing as absolute truth God is the Way the Truth and the life and it's revealed in His Word for you and for me. And so it's not because you're friendly or. It's not because your church is nice or it's not because the day of the week is more convenient it's because of God's word. It's because of God's word. And because you're here for the same reason I hope that gives us some camaraderie doesn't it. Just say if the Lord. That's the ultimate decider. That's why we're Seventh Day Adventists. While the world says it was changed when the world says it happens this way well the world this that's fine what does God say. That's it. If you want to pass for a sense phrases that visions were fourteen and fifteen we should no longer be children tossed to and fro carry about with every wind of doctrine by the trickery of men in the coming craftiness of deceitful plotting but speaking the truth and love. May grow up in all things in him who is the his Christ I don't want to be blown around by every wind of dog. But I also want to ask the Lord help me to know Has speak the truth of love to these people that feel like this is true. Help me to have a burden for their souls help me to pray for them help me do everything I can to reach out to them and Lord I pray that they will see the light and see the truth. As it comes down to this mile to meet authority is the divine voice in my own soul. Or it's this all scripture is given by inspiration of God is profitable for doctrine. Who is going to set your standard. You're in or you or God's word. That you may be complete thoroughly equipped for every good work I don't know about you but the BE That's the book for me. I stand alone on the Word of God the be. Only Father we thank you so much for the anchor of YOUR word I pray that each and every day we will feed on the scriptures that we will better understand you and your character that we will claim promises that give us a power to overcome sin in our lives that will give us hope and assurance and peace that the fruits of the spirit may be manifest in us and so we thank you for your word we pray that it applied to our lives that we glorify you and we pray. This media was brought to you by audio from a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio or if you would like to listen to more sermon. Visit W.W.W.. Dot org.


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