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Devotional

David Obermiller

Presenter

David Obermiller

Farm manager at Fresno Adventist Academy.

Conference

Recorded

  • January 20, 2018
    6:30 AM
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Father in heaven or thank you for the time and scripture this morning asked it should last us with the Holy Spirit as we study together as we talked together or to pray that you'd forgive us of our sins and even the desire in our heart to see. Our struggle with. As we read this morning that we could come this close to you is possible I pray this for myself for his for all of us in Jesus' name we pray. Matthew chapter thirteen is the story well among other stories the story of the week and the tears. This story and two others that I'm going to share with you this morning. Are all about the harvest they mean something to me in the context of my own Christian experience. I'll tell you briefly how I became a Christian. I was not raised either Christian or an administering. Heathen I guess you want to call that secular. One thousand nine hundred six Mark Finley had as ninety six meetings in Orlando Florida how many of you remember those OK. My family was divorced my mom and dad about when I was ten I think separated and my sister found the flyer for the net ninety six meetings at my mom's house in the mail. My local church was doing the meetings via satellite and a couple days later we went to my dad's house and she found the flyer in the mail so now she had to flyers and she came up to me and said Would you like to go to this now we were not religious OK We were secular. I'll skip the details of what I do I was doing that I was not a good boy and can figure out some of what that means so we weren't interested in attending this from a. From a spiritual point of view we were just kind of fascinated with the end of the world. When I was about that age eighteen. Love the movies were into the world movies actually you notice that all movies kind of tend towards the end of the world. But in that time period the movie Armageddon had just come out and Independence Day and all these various things about the end of the world so she said hey would you like to go to this and we were just kind of curious about how the world would end and of course on the flyer it was talking about how the world would end and so I went with her to the very first meeting my hair about shoulder length and leave the description there just because you entertain by me being up here with long hair this morning. I sat through one meeting and I didn't go back to any of the others she went all the meetings and was baptized. The pastor of that church is done something that. To be honest with you I have not had a pastor do sense that is that he visited us in our home after my sister was baptized I don't know what happened pastoral home visits but I have observed in the last twenty years of kind of disappeared but this pastor he visited my sister in our home regularly after she was baptized kept studying the Bible with her and you know what happened next he offered my mom Bible studies and so she started studying the Bible now I'm a guy and you know ladies guys are kind of slow sometimes it took me about a year before I was willing to start studying the Bible with them but I did. And I was sitting in the basement of the churches where our fellowship hall was and studying the Bible with a pastor and be honest with. I don't remember a single Bible study. Maybe your thinking is about Pastor I don't know but or maybe I was a bad student I don't know but I don't remember a single Bible study couldn't tell you about the investigative judgment or the Sabbath or the second coming or you know eating cleaner unclean food and I don't remember a single word he said out of any of those Bible studies. I remember one sentence he said it was a short. Nothing to do with a Bible study he looked across the table at me and he said David God has a purpose for you and your life now on a kid I was going to church had been baptized yet but on occasions I was going to church now I had a friend that lived last than a mile away from the church but she had a kind of go the roundabout way to get to his house because he lived in the neighborhood behind the church and on Sabbath I would sometimes go over there and we would do things we're not supposed to do. And so it went through my mind is when the pastor said David God has a plan for you I'm thinking you're crazy. Don't you know what I do don't you know who I am and the next thought that hit my mind was Lord I have no clue who you are but if that is who you are I want to know who you are. And that moment for me was really decisive. Because up until that point I had never met anybody who would believe in a worthless young person like me. Like God just said he would do for me and I was captivated. I was literally captivated by God I remember in my early years studying the Bible with passions studying the Bible with desire wanting to know everything I could know about God how many of your member those early days. I'm sharing this story with you because the three scriptures we're going to look at this morning relate to what happened to be next in my Christian experience to go to Matthew chapter thirteen if you're not there already story of the week and the tears. Story of the week in the tears. Verse twenty four is where the parable starts. Scripture says Jesus speaking the kingdom of heaven is like a man who so what it is feel. Good seed. What does it mean good seed. Viable seed OK that means the seed hadn't been sitting around for a long time and gone bad. OK what else is good Seen mean. Here maybe the right seed for that. Field of that climate and the other idea pure. I mean if you are farmers and you buy a seed. You buy a certain seeds. And there's a guarantee that the seed would be what. Ninety seven ninety eight whatever percent weed free. We had free. Pure seed or that a Farming Conference a couple of years ago. Listening to a lecture on small grains into a whole small grain process how small grains are grown how small and I mean small like scale to and the lack of equipment for small scale grain growers and how do you handle processing grains and one of the issues is there are some scenes that are very similar to certain grains and certain weed seeds that are similar to certain grain seeds it's very difficult to separate on a small scale farm to separate weed seeds from your desired seed and they went through how they made these devices to separate very low tack but very. Creative ingenuity of solutions to separating seed and good seed in your field here and that's the point of the parable this is about weed in the grain crop so the kingdom of heaven is like a man the SO good seed in this field while he slapped his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat and then he went his way but when the grain had sprouted and produced the crop then what happened the tears appeared so the servants now let's stop here for just a second who is the farmer in this parable be God and who are his servants. US His disciples his followers his people. So the servants of the owner came and said to him Sir. Did you not so what's it's a. Good scene. In your field and then they ask the question I want you say that question for me it was really persuasive. I want you to say that question for me. Why do you have tears. This questions really interesting. This question is very telling that's a little exposing I should say that question one more time one of the servants asked the farmer why is it that Christ disciples when they look upon a field. The first thing they see is the weeds and think about your own life and tell you about mine and second. Why is there we go to church is so easy to see the person sitting beside us is wearing jewelry. Why is it when we go to church and we're sitting in the congregation it's really easy to see that what's wrong with the music why is it when we go to church it's really easy to see what's wrong with what the pastor is preaching and how it might be theologically incorrect why is it when we go to church or when we fellowship with people it's so easy to look at them and say. How did that we get in there whether it's something in that person's life or something some person in the church that doesn't belong there however that is so easy for Christ disciples to look at all the things about farming to think about it all the things about farming that the disciples going to potentially ask how you growing that crop what will it be ready for harvest what about the the the nutrient requirements of that crowd how are you dealing with all the questions the disciples could have asked and what the disciples see myself. I told you just a moment ago that when I first became a Christian I was captivated captivated by God captivated by the thought of who he is. What he does. I remember reading the Bible with with the sincerity. To know him and I don't have time this morning to tell you the story but I can tell you that for me over the course of the bout the next ten years. The subtle culture of my church and the people that I fellowship with. Replaced my relationship with the religion and I became really good. At finding weeds. Tell you more about than just a moment. He responds in verse twenty eight the farmer's spawns in verse twenty eight an enemy has done this the servant said to him Well the problem is getting worse now and now an enemy is down we've got not only weeds but we have an enemy who's in full trading and and under sowing the crop with bad seed and so they asked the next question the question is and for me. You want to go get those out. He says Say it with me no. Let's do one more time it's worth saying it what does he say no it's really interesting why he says no he says no for a couple reasons number one is that you're going to pull up what with the weeds. Now the crop being grown as we of course some of you said that and the particular we need here is called Darnell. And there's a couple problems with pulling weeds in a wheat field number one we and wheat are pretty thickly planted in a wheat field anybody that looked at the seed density in a wheat field or a green field like that pretty dense. The second problem is that Darnell especially at early stages looks all whole lot like wheat. Now this makes the disciples question why are there weeds in your field all the more astounding is that because there weren't a lot of really really dramatic differences between the wheat appearance and the tears appearance so that means the disciples minds were so tuned in to looking for we need that they were looking for a minute detail differences between the two crops. And I just it dawns on me that we have gotten so good at criticizing other people that we not even noticing the big differences. We're picking on little stuff that you've got to look close to see. If you were to slap a title on the servants. Their title would be professional weed pullers and there's a whole lot of me there's a whole lot of us. That could be labeled professional Christian weed pullers. Who think we've been deputized we been hired employed to go through the church and find out all the stuff that's wrong and correct all the stuff that's wrong in God's field. Verse twenty nine one more time his answer the second question. No. Less while you gather up the tears you also uproot the wheat with them let both grow together until the. Harvest. And at the time of the harvest I'll say to the reapers first gather together the tears and bind them in bottles to burn them but gather the wheat into my barn. The farmer says the weeds will take care of themselves. When it's time to harvest what. The wheat is going to march up before March after for. Verse twenty six the parable. Of the seed very similar story to Matthew thirteen or joke before verse twenty six Jesus said The kingdom of God is as a man should scatter seed on the ground she sleep by night and rise by day and this seed should sprout and grow he doesn't understand how himself for the earth yields its crop by itself first the blade then the head and after that the four grain in the head. But when the grain ripens immediately he puts in the sickle because the harvest has come. Very similar story in some ways very similar parable in some ways. Both of these parables and the one we're going to look at last are telling us when Jesus will come. You know when that is when the harvest is right. And you know I want to take what we talked about in the first parable and I want I want to extend that a little bit and the last twenty years of being a Seventh Day Adventists I have been guilty of being too focused on what is going wrong in the world as a determinant of when Jesus is going to come. I've become fixated throughout my Christian experience on waiting for the world to just fall apart get bad enough so God is just so tired of us that he decides he has to come I remember earlier I was baptized October twenty fifth one thousand nine hundred seventy shortly after that Pope John Paul the second issued his Dia's Domini the cyclical on the worship of Sunday and advantage throughout the world I knew you were going crazy because the pope was calling for you know how many people said Jesus's that it was Y2K I was on my way to Union College to study theology sitting in my truck listening to a dog bachelor sermon on Y2K and how all these possible computer massive issues in every ad This was saying surely Jesus is. That it was September eleventh I was a Cole Porter working in Oklahoma Oklahoma Academy. Twin Towers fell down war on terrorism and every ad minister saying surely Jesus is testimonies Volume nine page maybe more recently Supreme Court votes that men and men can. And women and women can. And say it with me surely Jesus is. Weed pullers weed pullers. Because what intelligent farmer in this room would harvest his crop on the basis of the weeds in his field. Tell me what intelligent gardener in this room would harvest his crop on the basis of how bad the weeds are. Be honest if you're a bad farmer you might have weeds before you ever put your crop in the ground. I have an organic farm I got weeds all over the place. I can't spray I'm not G.M.O. I have a new guy that works for me really great guy. But be careful to say this because it kills the ever listen to this. He's extremely picky about we actually like it to a degree he would be so happy if there was not a single field. It would look clinically clean. Like. How to relax a little bit and it's important in a farm it's going to be weeds not going to harvest Michail because we. Are going to go out and harvest my orange trees because they are weeds on the ground. We're going to harvest my tomatoes because we have growing underneath the tomatoes the parable says verse twenty nine when the grain is say with me. Right then he puts in the sickle because the harvest is come. The word there ripen in Greek is really interesting word like you turn to Revelation fourteen while I tell you about it Revelation Chapter fourteen the word right there in that verse is a really interesting word it's a word that indicates possession it literally describes. The idea of transferring possession of an object from one person to another. Verse twenty nine their mass march after for the word ripen is describing the the moment when the grain or reaches the point where it is biologically mature and is ready to give itself and give ownership of itself over to the farmer. Because until the crop ripens Mother Nature if you want to say it that way. Is saying you can't have me yet Mother Nature saying you can't have me if I'm not right. God farmer to smart farmer. Come on say a smart farmer. To understand the laws of nature. To stand biology better stand plant chemistry plant physiology. Or stand what happens in the most intricate details on a on a level inside a plant no human instrument can see into the word is possession. It till the plant until the wheat ripens it's not fit for transferring ownership of that crop to the farmer and so the farmer has to wait. Until the crop is right. Revelation Chapter fourteen you know we're really good at. I have a couple minutes here Revelation Chapter fourteen we're really good at versus one of those verses six through twelve. What happens in verses six through twelve. Three Angels messages What do you know about the three angels messages. Worship. The creator or worship. The beast. And get the. Mark of the B.S. than what happens to those people get the mark of the beast that there's this. They get burned. With Foreman. Forever the verses how many of you are as familiar. With verses fourteen through twenty as you are with verses six or twelve you guys are quiet. Look at verse fourteen I have to read this fast maybe I should summarize. An angel comes out of heaven son a man sitting on the cloud has a sickle in his hand an angel says thrust in your sickle in a reap for the time is verse fifteen thrust in your sickle and reap for the time has come for you to reap for the harvest of the earth is ripe you know as a very particular Greek word love looking into words never assume that you know what a word means by the way especially your studying the Bible Greek or Hebrew never assume you know what a word means. The word ripe in this verse doesn't mean the same as the word right back in March after for this verse here the word right means dried out dried out say it because those are the grown grains are or familiar with grains I'm not a grain farmer but I love bread I love bread if I forgive me for those who are gluten intolerant like I would die. I would just drop over on the floor right now if I heard the words you can eat bread so I'm very curious I would love to grow granite as I mentioned earlier I've sat through some workshops some small grain production on farms and and grain has to ripen before you can harvest it I wish I could tell you more about this is really fascinating and from a farming perspective I want you to realize how much Revelation fourteen is closing VS is written from the perspective of a farmer and if you don't understand farming processes you don't understand Revelation fourteen and second coming the word right means dried down because grains of almost any type have to be a certain dryness more oyster content before you can harvest it if you harvest the grain a little bit too early and it's a little bit too wet and you put it into a silo the moisture starts to generate heat. And a certain point out heat reaches a certain level and what happens boom. Helps them fire. Midwest grain silo fire. On the other extreme here on the other extreme here if the farmer waits a little bit too long the crop gets a little bit too dry and when the combine goes through the field of using a sickle the heads of with heads of grain actually shatter and the grain all falls in the ground. You know the disciples are spending their time walking through the field looking at how bad the weeds are God is looking through the field waiting for the very precise moment when you are ready because of the harvest this world a little too soon it puts us in haven't you know what happened haven't called Boom. It Jesus way it's just a little too long just a little too long the crop just shatters and you can imagine picking up shattered heads of grain one kernel at a time often. A field of acres and acres and acres and acres and acres. God is watching you God is watching me. Watching inside our hearts if you were to study and through the grain growing process particularly the harvest process you would find interesting details that are relevant to the second coming in Revelation fourteen is closing verses that are far beyond what we've heard typically God is waiting for what's happening in my heart and you know there are weeds in the church and I would tell you something and be very honest with you. I have some weeds right here. Have some weeds right here and if I can be polite I'm guessing that probably you do too. Because you're human and heritance but you and I have gotten so far as inheritance of. The seeds of evil so on right here it's easy to walk through the church and look at what's going wrong right here. And forget that I have something going wrong right here. But I want to close with this thought. Many of us view God. As a professional weed puller every mistake we make everything we do wrong every good thing we neglect to do we view God as a person who just seen those things. Every mistake we make he's ready to punish every mistake we make he's ready to let us know he's rated chastize he's ready to to discipline you know the visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generation Yes That verse is true but many of us in our minds see God as one who sees really we really really well it's not God. Telling you. It is not God. The God that accepted me at age eighteen when I was on drugs and doing things that I shouldn't have done that looked at me for who I was and said I want to use you anyway is the same God Today he looks at my life Ace I know you're not ripe yet I love you still I know you're messed up Moses was messed up lied to was messed up David was messed up Peter Paul James John they're all messed up William Miller was messed up Ellen White was messed up James White was messed up recently read an article and James and Ellen sometimes could even get along they separated for a while the prophet. James White wrote to his wife said your head's not mine keep your head on your shoulders. The time they could even live together. And why it was human. So are you. God says I didn't pick you because you're perfect. I'm watching you because I love you. And one day you will be perfect and I'm waiting for that day not watching the little details that we'd save your life. Leave your focus. Of the weeds somewhere else. And leave the thought that God is just watching the weeds in your life somewhere else. And tell yourself a different story God loves you. And is working with you and me. To make us perfect. Father in heaven. Pray that you would blast us with a different picture of you. A different picture of our world. A crop focused world. Not a weed focused world. In Jesus Name I bring. This media was brought to you by audio verse a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about how do you force or if you would like to listen to your servant leader Visit W W W. Or.

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