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The Word: The Bedrock of Revival

David Shin

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Pastor David begins the first installment of a three part mini series on the three essentials of Christian living.

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David Shin

Dr. David Shin is the President of Ouachita Hills College.

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  • November 5, 2016
    11:30 AM
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Also a genius and has incredible ability when it comes to languages as well as mathematics he has mastered 10 languages English Finnish French German Lithuanian Esperanto Spanish Welsh and Icelandic matter of fact I watched a documentary where he took the challenge to learn Icelandic in one week Icelandic is reputed to be one the most difficult languages in the world and after that one week he went on live Icelandic television and did an interview people were stunned at his fluency amazing individual and when it comes to mathematics Daniel Tammet doesn't need a calculator I watched an interviewer sitting there with him and punching numbers into a calculator and he was asked what is 2727 to the 7th power which is 27 multiplied by itself 7 times and he rattled off just in case you didn't know this everybody knows this right he rattled off 10416000000 353203 he said the number just appears in his head and he was writing in one of his books about how numbers are like pictures each number has a different texture in feel he said there are actually beautiful numbers I don't know that and numbers that are not so beautiful. He took the challenge of also memorizing pie I have this on the screen this is Piet and I know it goes on for infinity. And he sat down for 2 weeks to memorize pi and he sat down in a controlled setting for 5 and a half hours and resign did pie the ready for this to the 22514th place from memory took him over 5 hours to do it I can imagine having this type of mind he is a genius known as a savant one of only a few 100 in the world that have this type of ability our minds are truly incredible Aren't we fearfully and wonderfully made when I get to heaven I'll be able to do this praise God Amen now today in order to frame our discussion and our study I want to go to the geniuses of Jesus's day the biblical Savant's the biblical individuals that knew their Bibles and they aren't the fairest sees. Today we use the term fair a C. in a pejorative term meaning that it's not a complement if you called me a fair a C. I would be offended deeply offended it has the connotations and being synonymous with legalism but in Jesus's day being called a Ferris he was a complement believe it or not these were the elites of society the quote spiritual people the people that knew their Bibles and the individuals that people looked up to and at a very early age if you were training to be a fairest see this is what you went through you went through the 1st stage called Beth so a firm from ages 6 through 10 they would memorize the Torah as Genesis Exodus Leviticus Numbers and Deuteronomy imagine that by the age of 10 they had memorized the entire Torah and completed Beth C. for you imagine a 10 year old running around knowing the 5 Books of Moses from memory the Torah amazing Now if you master this and you were seen as promising you went to bet pal mood now the best of the best students would continue on BET Talmud meant the house of learning roughly from ages 10 through 14 in bet Talmud you would memorize the rest of the New Testament and by the age of 14 they would have memorized Genesis to Malakai. The entire Old Testament I want to see this a 14 year old teenager let me see if I can found Molokai in my Bible this is incredible when you think about the minds of these young people that were to be the religious leaders that this entire portion of Scripture in the New Testament had been written in the day that was the entire Bible a 14 year old in order to be a part of the sea and Hedron you had to be brilliant you had to have a mind that was on a level that we find in comprehensible today and it would make the scholars today seem very very small in comparison to these individuals they knew their Bibles and it would seem that if anyone would be able to recognize the Messiah it would be the fairest sees it would be the individuals that could just scroll through their mental data bank and go through every messianic prophecy from memory and be able to spot the Messiah these individuals knew their Bibles they knew all the messianic prophecies they had been raised at a very early age in crime for this position and they came face to face with the Son of God and did not recognize him. The famed atheist Bertrand Russell was asked the question What will you do Mr Russell if after you die you find out there is a God what will you say to him Bertrand Russell then in this of even he said I will tell him he just did not give me enough evidence. Not enough evidence Bertrand Russell said. And perhaps the fairest Cs of the New Testament could make this same claim that Jesus did not present anough Imperial evidence for being the Messiah and I want to as we set the stage for our discussion today to invite you to open your Bibles with me to John Chapter 11 verses 38 through 45 as we look at one of the most powerful evidences as to the nature of Jesus having divine characteristics John Chapter 11 verses 38 through 45 this is that story that we're familiar with Lazarus. And you remember the account Jesus knows that Lazarus is sick he doesn't go Jesus knows that Lazarus is on the brink of death he still doesn't go Jesus hears word that Lazarus has died. He doesn't go immediately but he waits not one day not 2 days not 3 days but 4 days before going to last or says tomb I believe this was to eliminate any doubts as to whether Lazarus was actually dead so Jesus goes there and let's pick up in verse 38 then Jesus again groaning in himself came to the tomb it was a cave and a stone lay against it Jesus said take away the stone. Martha the sister of him who was dead said to him Lord by this time there is a stench for he has been dead how many days 4 days Jesus said to or did not I say to you that if you believe me you would see the glory of God then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was in line now this was not in private this was in front of witnesses there were people there a man has been dead for 4 days Jesus goes there in Jesus lifted up his eyes and said Father I think you that you have heard me and I know that you always hear me but because of the people who are standing by I say this that they may believe that you sent me now when he had said these things he cried with a loud voice last or come forth and I just imagine in my imagination it's kind of an echo and there's a pause and people look at the tomb and federally they see movement and Lazarus who is bound in grave clothes starts to shuffle out of the tomb and there is an audible gasp throughout the witnesses that are there and when he had and he who died came out bound hand and foot would grave clothes and his face was wrapped with a cloth Jesus said to them loose him and let him go now was this evidence at the very least if you were an eyewitness there you would come to the conclusion that Jesus was unique this is not ordinary and that Jesus deserves a fair shake. As far as the big being given a chance to show that he is indeed the Messiah look in verse 45 this was enough for many of the people then many of the Jews who had come to marry and had seen the things Jesus did Jesus and believed in him so too many of the people that were there this was a nuff evidence to show that Jesus was indeed the Messiah the Son of God and they did indeed believe in Him This was evidence this was empirical evidence a man in broad daylight calls out to another man any is raised to life now I want you to look at the reaction of the Farriss to this you pick it up a chapter later turn with me to John Chapter 12 vs 9 through 111 chapter later and you'll see the response of the fairest seas to the empirical evidence that is given regards to the messiah now a great many of the Jews knew that he was there and they came not only for Jesus' sake but that they might also see who. Last So people are coming to see this man that has been raised to life whom he had raised from the dead but look in verse 10 but the chief priests plotted to put Lazarus to death also because on account of him many of the Jews went away and believed in him here they are presented with evidence Lazarus is alive and what do they endeavor to do. They want to kill the evidence. Is he friends it's not the availability or the lack of availability of truth it's the hypocrisy of the search. The issue here was not that the Jews did not have enough evidence the real issue was that they did not want to see Jesus and this brings us to an important part of what individuals call it pissed Amala JI now Epistemology is the science or the study of how we know what we know how we know what we know matter of fact there was this one researcher that brought individuals into a room he divided them into and 2 half of the group he showed them this picture perhaps you've heard of this study before showed them this picture they all looked at that picture and he said I want you to remember this picture to the other half of the group he presented this picture now when the 2 halves of the group were together he said you remember what you saw the 1st group saw this picture the 2nd group saw this picture and when they were together he presented them this picture and he asked them what do you see and half of the group said I see a young woman the other group said I see an older woman now what is taking place here is very fascinating because both of them are looking at exactly the same picture yet arriving at opposite conclusions one group says look I see an old woman one group says I see a young woman N. the researcher found that an argument broke out between the 2 groups as to what they saw they said is preposterous what's wrong with you they were looking at the same picture yet they had something that was implanted in their minds a pre-supposition that framed what they saw. In the case of Jesus the disciples saw the same Christ as the Farriss yet they came to totally opposite conclusions much like this illustration here now there's a lot of discussion now in the Eben his church if you haven't heard on this notion of hermeneutics It's how we interpret scripture Needless to say many individuals are in line with the in light and meant theory of how we interpret Scripture and it is that Scripture projects onto us information we receive passively the texts of Scripture and it's kind of like a a film that takes a picture it just projects onto us and we from a neutral vantage point interpret the text this is the in lighten framework and the notion of pure reason so the text projects onto us we study scripture we go to the data and we arrive at a conclusion based on the data this is a paradigm that many people naturally assume yet when you study the Bible and even modern philosophy today people have come to the conclusion that not only does the text project onto us information but we also project onto the text pre-suppositions biases our worldview when can I say this even our culture skews our interpretation of the text. So when you come to scripture not only is the text impacting us but we are projecting onto the text our world view our values our pre-suppositions our biases all of us come to scripture with an unconscious lens that views the data that we are exploring this is something that we cannot avoid So when we come to the text all of us have something that is morning in shaping what we are seeing just like some of the people that viewed that 1st drawing saw an old woman because they had a pre-supposition of an older woman in the same way when we come to the text there are certain things that shape how we interpret the tax So here's the question how do we arrive at the message that God is intending to give us in Scripture I mean isn't this a fundamental question Jesus makes a profound statement when it comes to this science of knowing and he says it in John Chapter 7 verse 17 notice what he says he says he that wills to do His will shall know you catch what Jesus said He that wills to do His will shall know I'm so glad that Jesus did not say He that has an I.Q. above 140 shall know I mean I wouldn't be in that category count me out of that Jews didn't say he that has a college degree or above shall know but when it comes to scripture the nature of scripture is unique in that it is framed in a way so that intent is prior to content. And truthfulness in the heart precedes truth in the natural world so when we come to the text the Bible tells us he that will to do his will so when we come to scripture if our hearts want to follow God we will know concerning the doctrine the Bible is shaped in a way so that a person that has an I.Q. let's say of $220.00 and yet comes to scripture with skepticism will read it and find nothing but contradictions in a person that only has a GED and an I.Q. of 99 can read scripture and find salvation and meet Jesus and see wonderful harmony this is the way that Scripture is written it is written in a way that our frame our posture our intention of how we approach the text shapes how we view Scripture he that wills to do His will show no Jesus is saying that our frame of mind our hearts are revealed when we come to Scripture I think of this statement in the book great controversy and she says this many a portion of Scripture which learned men pronounce a mystery or pass over as an important is full of comfort and instruction to him who has been taught in the school of Christ one reason why many theologians have no clear understanding of God's Word is that they close their eyes to the truce which they do not practice. I want to think a little bit about that last statement there is one reason why many theologians have no clear understanding of God's Word is because they don't know Greek and Hebrew and the literature that's out there notice the frame of this is similar to John 717 It's not intellectual it's moral She says that is that they close their eyes to the truths they do not wish to practice meaning that there is something about our more rally that when we say no to the truths of scripture in our daily life in practice that limits us from further understanding so this this book that we call scripture is is shaped in a way that the more truth that we apply to our lives the more we will understand and I tell people if you want to understand the mysteries of scripture live practice and follow what you are ready to know that's the key John 1235 walk in the light Let's start this come upon you and there are many people out there that are brilliant and have many degrees many letters behind their name and yet they are spiritually blind and the reason is not because of a lack of I.Q. It's because of a lack of I Will less the issue so when it comes to scripture God has leveled the playing field he has placed it in a way so that everyone from someone with a 3rd grade education all the way up to the most educated can come to a grasp of spiritual reality and understanding and saving grace as long as our posture is in the frame of I will I desire. Help me to understand and this frame helps us in our understanding and in our progress I've been reading the great controversy and it goes on and says as an understanding of the Bible truth depends not so much on the power of intellect brought to the search as on the singleness of purpose the earnest longing after righteousness so if you come to scripture and say Lord help me to do your will not your will but not my will but your will be done that will frame our mindset as we come to the text. I have a picture on the screen of Alvin planting. In my recent research that I have had to do I have had the privilege of reading this brilliant philosopher and I'll be honest much of what I read I do not understand he is reputed to be the greatest philosopher of the last 50 years Time magazine said that he is the preeminent most notable Protestant philosopher alive today and what Alvin Plantinga has done is that through his philosophical arguments he has placed Christianity in the conversation as a viable option in the academic re arena see prior to Alvin Plantinga people thought that philosophically speaking Christianity was absurd but because of the work of this man. Christianity has now a respectable place at the table in the academic arena and as I was reading this man it was just remarkable the insights that he was bringing and this is the latest research that is being brought forth in the field. How we know what we know and I have summarized and distilled 3 of his main points and are you ready for this here is Alvin Plantinga brilliant philosopher and this is his a conclusion that has been earth shattering in the field of a pissed Amala G. Here it is point number one we can know God If our reasoning faculties are properly functioning. I mean this is remarkable because prior to this people were saying look there is no evidence for God There is no evidence for God There is no empirical evidence for God They were battling it out here but he has removed the frame of the conversation and saying you know what if our minds are functioning the way that God intended it to function we will assume that God exists if your original suggester one it doesn't begin with a huge introduction giving the evidence for God It just says in the beginning God. God is assumed and so Alvin Plantinga makes a statement we can know got if our reasoning faculties are properly functioning and notice this properly functioning means that they are functioning as God designed them to and this is his conclusion the Holy Spirit must repair the ravages of sin including the cognitive damage so that we can know this is just changes the whole conversation of a pistol molecule. And Alvin planting because contribution is so unique because it is oh in line with Scripture because you know what Paul said over 2000 years ago before Alan Plantinga was even thought of Paul says in 1st Corinthians chapter 2 verse 14 the person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them why foolishness and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit Alvin Plantinga contends that the only way that we can truly perceive is if we have divine intervention because because of sin our minds have been warped twisted so that we are not able to rightly perceive and we need a divine intervention the Holy Spirit to help us to perceive the truths of Scripture all of us are broken this is the nature of who we are because of sin we need the Holy Spirit in order to discern the statement it's a little bit long but I wanted to put in its entirety testimonies volume $570475.00 without the guidance of the Holy Spirit we shall be continually liable to arrest the scriptures or to misinterpret them there is much reading of the Bible that is without profit and in many cases is a positive injury you know you can get injured reading the Bible when the Word of God is opened without reverence and without prayer when the thoughts and affections are not fixed upon God or in harmony with His will the mind is clouded with down and the very study of the Bible skepticism strengthens. The enemy takes control of the thoughts and he suggests interpretations that are not correct the Bible is a spiritual book and we need a spiritual frame in order to correctly interpret scripture it's not like mathematics or calculus or algebra or geometry where we approach it with our mental act human and come to a conclusion our spiritual frame helps us to interpret there is a whole other element of hermeneutics that is not explored many times but it is the great controversy perspective and the Bible tells us that we don't wrestle against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in high places and this next quotation is startling in testimony as to ministers page one away and notice what this quotation States the spirit in which you come to the investigation of the scripture will determine the character of the assailant at your side now think about the implications of this if we come to the switchers with a certain spirit a certain mentality we will have a an assistant by our side and what our intentions are will determine who are assistant is when we come to Scripture notices angels from the world of light will be with those who in humility of heart to seek seek for divine guidance but if the Bible is opened with irreverence with a feeling of self-sufficiency if the heart is filled with prejudice who is beside you Satan is beside you and he will set the plain statements of God's word in a perverted light. Process the implications of this I know what type of assistant I want by my side in my Bible study in the morning so the spirit that we come to the text determines which assistant we're taking and we need to be intentional in this because this is this is the great controversy perspective that there is a whole other arena that we can see and when we come to the tax and saying Lord I will to do your will please help me we have and in Jelinek assistant if we come to the text with pride arrogance and prejudice we have a demonic assistant This is the whole reality and believe you me that assistant effects your hermeneutics it effects what conclusions you come to in your Bible study is so vitally important that when we come to the text we say Lord I'm in need of your help I am nothing you are everything please show me your will. And from that frame angels of heaven are commissioned to help us in this process the Bible should never be studied without prayer the Holy Spirit alone can cause us to feel the importance of those things easy to be understood a prevent us from resting trues difficult of comprehension prayer implies that we have a need that we cannot comprehend the text in our own Jesus himself said these words John Chapter 14 verse 26 The Advocate the only Spirit whom the Father will send in my name will teach you all things the good news is that God is desperately longing to reveal Himself through His word Amen. He's in the business of saving us so when we come to him and say Lord reveal yourself to me through your word that is a prayer that he will always answer change my heart oh god make it ever true reveal yourself to me through your word this is a divine book it's a spiritual book that is only spiritually discerned and it's my prayer that as we come to scripture each and every day that we will ask. The divine intervention of his spirit and heavenly angels to mold to reshape and to frame our pre-suppositions so that we will be able to see Jesus in His Glory Let us pray Father in heaven we THINK YOU ARE JESUS FOR JESUS is the Word made flesh and Lord today we want to come to you asking you for divine pre-suppositions for divine perspectives when it comes to the text of Scripture Lord in our daily Bible study may you grant us the spirit of humility and the spirit that desires to do your will help us Father by your grace to invite you into our hearts each and every day as want to make a simple appeal today if you want to say Lord I want to see Jesus but you've said the pure in heart will see God in the Lord if there is someone here today that once you say Lord change my heart oh god make it ever true. May I be like you for someone who wants to say that I want to buy to raise your hands today and say Lord I'm willing help me to be willing praise God Praise God Father we thank you that this is a request that you never refuse may seal each hand with your spirit change us make us more like you shape us as we read scripture create in a sickly heart for Riyad see sings in Jesus' name. Amen 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 audio verse if you would like to listen to more sermons lead to visit W W W audio verse or.

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