Favorite Sermon Add to Playlist

Sponsor

Conference

Recorded

  • October 20, 2018
    9:00 AM

Series

Logo of Creative Commons BY-NC-ND 3.0 (US)

Copyright ©2018 AudioVerse.

Free sharing permitted under the Creative Commons BY-NC-ND 3.0 (US) license.

The ideas in this recording are those of its contributors and may not necessarily reflect the views of AudioVerse.

SPONSORED

Audio Downloads

This transcript may be automatically generated

Dear Father in heaven we just thank you so much for this beautiful day that she had given to each and every one of us we just asked and invite your Holy Spirit to be with us as we continue on this day of rest minds be reconnected to you where we contemplate your love in your goodness and I pray that your Holy Spirit may fill us with your joy fill us with your remembrances they may never forget who we are in you we just asked that your spirit may be with each speaker that is a part of the panel may place the words within their mouth and make the message plain for each and every one of us here help us to be attentive to the message we thank you so much Father God for your love your mercy and your grace and we continue to ask you to lead us from to do the best for that is a kingdom and the power and the glory forever in your precious and name I pray Amen good morning everyone. All right so at this time we're actually going to have some school panel discussion how many of you be honest have ever had questions in your life yeah especially in your spiritual journey has anyone had questions yeah I know I have and so at this time we're actually going to be we have some friends back here where she going to be asking some questions people have put up on the online website answering me answering those at this time all right so before we begin we're going to introduce everyone so why don't we start with Professor go darn I think so you pronounce it and why don't you mention. Your what you do and also where you're from I am Kathy Goddard and I teach English here at Southern and live here in the area I'm I'm Chris Anderson and I'm a pastor of a local church southeast of there in the church were located the interviews Brainerd road near Brainerd is a 3 year old church with a baby it's brand new you know and I live in Harrison. And I teach at the School of Physical Education Health and Wellness. I've been here for. How many of your 18 here just as long as they're alive you've been teaching here well. My name is Matthew Bronson I'm a graduate from Seoul's West Bible college in Arizona and I am studying Near Eastern Archaeology here something name is West peppers I live in Michigan and I work in the ministry apartment there for the conference and what was it like where where you're from where you from I'm from Michigan I grew up in Alabama though just our house south of here so I mean as Evelyn and I graduated from Seoul's was Bible college in Arizona and I'm studying at something all right and I graduated with these 2 guys are my costs from the Bible College and I'm studying business pre-med here so all right so at this time before we begin Can we have another word of prayer just as we dive into these questions of father having We pray for spirits we decide. What is shared here I know that my friends could have questions in their own hearts. That maybe they haven't had answers to in I just pray for your spirit that whatever is shared your word may be uplifted and we could just share something that we really touch and and says something that's been on someone's heart today in Jesus name. All right 1st question that I have is how do I find my word happiness security in God Is it a matter of truly internalizing and being content with his opinion of me above all slosh any opinions. Begin. I think we find our worth in God When we stop looking at ourself. I think that because we're so human we are very self-absorbed and and I think we can find our worth more strongly when we take the focus off of ourselves and put it on Jesus and start studying him and looking at him and understanding him and I think that's that's the way to do it yes and then for sure go ahead Professor and. It has taken a while for me to realize one very important fact and that is I am dirt literally Well the breath of God in me I'm literally a pile of dirt and it has taken a while for me to understand that I can't look at what other people say or think or treat me to determine my value my value is because God placed me on this planet earth right now at this time for a purpose and not for anybody else's purpose but for his men go ahead Pastor Chris you know so my family I lived in Zambia Africa for a little bit and I learned there that there wasn't price stickers on everything that you wanted to buy you had to negotiate and when you negotiate if there was something you wanted and they knew it you would pay a far higher price so the value of an item was determined by what you were willing to pay and so you would negotiate back and forth and as I reflect on the value that I have as an individual agree with Judy on dirt but God found something valuable there you recognize that there's something in humanity that I'm willing to pay a price for he didn't go she says I will pay the highest price in the universe I'll pay the price of my son. God found value in us so hard that it was equal to his son to me that gives me a great sense of self-worth that God loves me that much and I think one thing I think our society is all just places on what other people think of us off of times you don't look at what God thinks of us and think about that we're going to see something that you go and yeah I really agree with all the responses that have been shared and I was it was my 1st thought you know we need to look to Jesus this is coming from a melancholy you know. I always had really low self-esteem and to be 100 percent honest you know I still struggle with like those thoughts and so so I tried to think you know like that's the truth we need to be looking to Jesus not to self how do we do that practically I think 1st of all we can determine where we are on that scale by I mean just just asking ourselves you know who do we really love to think about like who do we love to talk about who who are we spending our time thinking about. Maybe there's some other like you know melancholy is out there who can I resonate with this before going to sleep at night I would just replay over the day I'm like oh I can't believe you did that that is so stupid and like this and that and and I did it you can even sleep it's so unhealthy in so many different ways but you know you can replace those thoughts like before you go to bed you can go and think about the day how did I say God bless me today how did I see God working in my life and by replacing those thoughts I do believe that you can start to see change day by day and anyone else before we go and just this is a reminder for the speakers you don't feel free if you don't feel oppressed to share you don't have to share for every question so if you feel God impressing you Evelyn is going to share something. Just I would like to share this verse that I think was mentioned yesterday it's 1st Peter's 1st Peter $29.00 And it says but you're a chosen generation or a royal priesthood and a holy nation and his own special people that you may proclaim the praises of him who called you out of his mark darkness into his marvelous light and in turn this verse is very beautiful because there reminds us that we are a peculiar people we're called out of darkness into his marvelous light it's even more beautiful because our self-worth does come from God and he tells us that he would have common died for us if we had only been the only person I would have ever seen and so like mentioned here God sees such a great value in us that he was willing to die not only just die like for the world but he's willing to die for each and every one of us he was willing to die for each and every one of us human All right so going on to our next question how do I surrender to God no matter how much I try I can't seem to give my heart over completely to got. Your best yourself so well you're pastor. So this idea of surrender there's an interesting tension within this concept because God will not force us in any level to yield our conscience to him we have to surrender that to him and so God respects that and yet he also wants to work in us to willing to do according to HIS good pleasure and so how do we find the strength something that we have to find in in this surrender element. And we're given a picture of that in Hebrews 12 I'm just thinking of that. Surrender isn't an easy thing it's not like oh I just I just it's easy to do no we have to press into it isn't Hebrews 12 verse. To looking to Jesus the author and finisher of our faith who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross despising the shame and the set down of the right hand of the throne of God For consider him that endured such a contradiction of sinners against himself lest you be wearied and faint in your minds you have not resisted until blood striving against sin surrender takes grip it takes pressing into and as we surrender God empowers that and Galatians we're told that as we crucified with Christ Nevertheless I live yet Christ lives in me and so this surrender has to have an element of pressing into as well as an empowerment of Jesus and just to comment on that I've been reading this book called Lessons on faith how many of you have ever heard the lessons on faith and so one thing as well even even for those that are Christians already. I forgot it was 80 Jones I think one of the pioneers he says oftentimes we start our Christian life surrendering to God But then we continue on our Christian journey on our own strength but he says each step of our lives we need to be constantly surrendering to him and he wants. You know the 1st thing that came to my mind was Philippines 2 verse 13 you know God works on this verse verse 12 it says to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling like not to do it confidently. And then Paul says why in verse 13 for it's God who works in you to waste both to will and to do and I really just actually want to drive this point home just because when I 1st read it I it went over my head I didn't even really think about it so will is to want you know to do is to do we know God works in us to do things but you know maybe you don't even want to but God works in you even to want to do His will you know. I really just wanted to also just like give a little advertisement for one of my favorite books ever written steps to Christ in Chapter 5. It actually says many how am I to make the surrender of myself to God how am I supposed to do it you desire to give yourself to him we were weak in moral power in slavery to doubt and controlled by the habits of your life of sin your promises and resolutions are like ropes of sand you cannot control your thoughts your impulses your affections she goes on to say like the knowledge of how many times you failed it makes you think that it lessens your confidence that you even can come to God. I really want to read this chapter go ahead and read it she talks about the power of choice God would never make it so that your choice is violated and and one last thing is that the closer we come to God The clearer vision is going to be you know the closer you get to him the more valuable he's actually going to look the more you actually want to surrender. I think we often look at the wrong actions in our lives and we say and we try to. Think we often think to ourselves once I do all these things under control then my life is going to be surrendered to God so I have to work on these things. And the reality is that the opposite is true is that the harder you work on those things the more difficult they're going to be there have been times in my life when I have given counsel to a person or I have or I've arrived realize a certain thing that needs to change and then I just go right out and do that thing myself and that makes sense and so the reality is that we we we don't becomes We don't necessarily become surrender when everything in our life is in order we make the choice to surrender so that God can bring everything in our life in order to make sense and so that that choice can be made at any time and the reason that you have the ability or the opportunity to make that choice is because God has already made a choice for you he made a choice for you I always used to say that that. Back be careful I say this that God doesn't do anything contrary to our will or against our will but actually he did it because you know that and I mean read this to you Romans Chapter 5 Verse 6 for when we were still without strength in due time Christ died for the ungodly Now when you were a sinner and when you were just buried in sin and you were just like well let me just keep reading they'll say this 1st seriously will the righteous man for RIGHT JUST MAN one daya perhaps for a good man someone might even dare to die But God demonstrates His own love towards us that while we were still sinners Christ died for us. Much more than having now been justified by what we shall be saved from wrath or him for if when we are the enemies if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of his son much more having been reconciled we shall be saved by His life and so when you were the enemy of God If you would have if you would have been asked the question do you want God to die for you to save you you would have said no not interested no things get out of here right but God said you know what contrary to your desire I'm going to do this thing anyway for you I'm going to give you a gift regardless of if you like it or not or if you choose it or not because I care about you and I have an interest in you and I want to do that for you I just read this last night this is comes from. Some knows that all why I wrote but I want you to this is very powerful as says Thus it is that Christ's death actually did something for everyone without his or her choice both temporal any terminal but the fullness of this great gift will never be fully realized or experience without a positive steadfast response rather than taking away mankind's choice the cross of Christ is that which it gives them a choice it is the cross of Christ that elicits or draws out a response from every one what will you do with the gift that I have given you so is gone it is upon this response this choice that everyone's eternal destiny hangs and so God made a choice when you didn't have a choice so that you could have a choice and then he says because of the choice I'm giving you what are going to do with it. And then All right our next question something I think a lot of college students can relate to specially leaving home is how do I find sauce choose good and godly friends description Scripture tells us the person who would have friends Michaud in South friendly and I think the way that we choose godly friends is 1st of all being godly ourselves and so if where 1000 godly friends we need to do to develop those disciplines of godliness in our own life and allow God to bring people into our lives. My response would be do you really want them because you always find what you're looking for and if you come to southern looking for godly friends you'll find them if you want to come to southern looking for a party you'll find it just last night I was trying to go to bed and I kept hearing these people screaming outside and blow in these air horns and then I want to outside and I heard this wheeling of tires going so I was doing donuts where they were opening up the Sabbath there were that or yeah I guess so it was like 11 o'clock at night and I was like What if you were excited you know I would have even thinking and so the reality is if you really want godly friends. You can find them it's not that hard you just go to the right places and God will lead you in that direction yes exactly go ahead follow up with it is true if you are looking for a certain group of people you need to go where you're going to find them if you're looking for godly people go to prayer meeting go to church go to places where you're going to see them but not just go there get involved I think too often we've become passive in our our relationship with God instead of actually being involved I go to a very small church and we would love to have lots of young people there and be involved in talk to me later. But you know we we want people to read the US and be a be a Sabbath school teacher for the adults you're never too young to do that in my view and so just go where you're going to see those people if I want to find. Party friends that drink alcohol I'm going to go to a bar it's not that hard the same is true if I'm looking for Christ. Go ahead ladies 1st OK so I just have 2 practical things One is if you're trying to find godly friends 1st of all if you're if you're ready at this campus it's really easy you can just like they've been mentioning get involved or find a life group go and look at different groups of people different programs Bible studies and become acquainted with them and like they said you will find what you're looking for and I know that by beholding we become changed and so if we really want to be more Christ like and find that good group of people we need to stick with them and continue to just make. Just continue to be friends because by the group of friends that we select We will become more like them and so that's just one thing like forming or becoming involved and just choosing like the right group of friends just a really quick like testimony of myself I had a lot of friends growing up in high school but I never really had like a good Godly Christ like friend and it wasn't until I did this youth program that I met this really great friend and she really helped me what made her different from all my other good friends was that she directed me to Christ and that we were accountability friends so if you really want to find those good friends that will help you that will lead you closer to God make sure that you both are heading towards the same direction of growing each other keeping each other accountable to get to know God better. And say one more thing yeah my lot to do that yeah go ahead and make. My grandpa used to say son all through life you're going to have what you call true friends and then you're going to have so-called friends and he said The so-called friends are going to come and go but your true friends are always going to be there and and they're And as I've become a Christian I've reflected more on that and when I have a true friend regardless of what my situation is they're going to tell me the truth and they're going to point me to Christ and we're going to encourage me to do the right thing they're not going to just sit and tell me what I want to hear all the time I'm not going to sit and pat me on the back while I take myself down a road to destruction going to say hey what are you doing to come away from that now it's always helpful to have godly friends but I want to help us understand that we cannot become dependent upon God the friends you have to have and absolute dependence upon Christ alone when I 1st became a 7th Day Adventist I became a 7th Day Adventist my senior year in a state university which is very uncommon most young people by the time they hit senior in a city university have left Christianity but I came to Christianity and the 1st church that I went to. It was a church where the I was 22 at that time the person closest to my age was in their late fifty's not that that's bad and then it went up to a few people in their sixty's a couple in their seventies in the eighty's or ninety's so I was like the youngest person by like over 30 years and you know why I didn't care I was so happy to have found the truth of Christ and he was such a close friend to me that not that I didn't want other friends but I didn't I wasn't dependent upon that whether I have them or not I found the prize and I was joyful so I'm not saying that to say don't go off and be a monk or a hermit by yourself is good to have godly friends but don't let that you don't let your spiritual experience become dependent upon that yes exactly I think I saw pass a crack that I could comment on this is like reading I was reading about health and exercise and they were giving tips on how to get healthier and one of the interesting tips that they had was to find friends that are also healthy and exercising they said the surest way to gain weight is to have friends that weigh more than you or I thought that was interesting so I appreciate the comment that this question is looking to to make a difference in their lives through friends there is one friend that sticks closer than a rather that we can always know will affect our life in a positive way. And I think one of the common things that I saw in this is is service service I think when you when you serve I think when you're looking for to do the same same thing you're looking at the same guy and I think other people will look here left or right of fine people that are trying to do the same thing as all. I'm sorry like this will be short but but we're we're and it's not wrong to do this we're often looking for godly friends that can be a encouragement meant for us and that's good and we need that at times but as I begin to grow in Christ God's going to bring people in my life who need a mentor more than me I make sense and he's going to allow me to be a mentor and a friend to someone else and that's where an exponential growth will take place in my spiritual life so because instead of that as well. All right let's go ahead and move on to another question how can we as a church come together and finish the work that Christ has given us to do you know this question is really really germane currently but I don't think it's this is really how it's we must Jesus' prayer was that this church be unified that the world may know that he was sent from God and this is Christ prayer how can Christ Per not be fulfilled unless we are resisting. And so how the only way is to surrender ourselves to Jesus as it were to let him be our captain or guide and leave the ship go and professional Holy Spirit heart work is what we need to be surrendering ourselves on a daily basis and giving up our own agendas and our own thoughts and I think that the way for us to come together is to come to Christ and I think is just like the hub of a wheel if we're coming to Jesus as the hub we're going to be coming close to closer to each other I think we also need to suspend our judgment suspend our judgment of other people suspend our judgment of where we think the church is headed suspend our judgment so that we are not making things happen because we think they're going to happen exactly. Right God again when I think about how this of the heavens church was formed. It was formed because people came together to study the Word of God for themselves to know what God's desire was for them individually and then that's how they came together corporately and I personally feel that there is a lot in in the organization of people coming together to study the Word of God with purpose with intentionality so that they can know what God's plan is for them individually as well as corporately God is desiring to pour out His Spirit in the latter rain to take the message to the world do we desired as much as he can just. Go ahead. You know. I very this is a thought that's come to my mind I've actually never even like shared it before with you guys how many of you guys have tried literature evangelism before you know like you threaten me like that there's some hands and we've actually letting you through programs or literature of Angeles and programs and. First of all before I say that if I could just say at the risk of sounding cliche I believe the answer to the question is we need God's Holy Spirit you know like that really is what we need to finish the work. About literature evangelism there's something I noticed what you're doing is you're taking YOUNG PEOPLE from a variety of places and you're bringing them together just for the same mission and we put them out there in the going into the field and and what we do is we go around to each one and we try to help them we use our experience and we bend every effort and when they start to see success they get excited and they share it too they take the radio right and they share it and when people start to hear it they start to see it's possible something happens throughout the day it's momentum we get momentum going and when that happens you can do more than it was possible if you did not have that is just a thought that I've had I really believe as we draw closer and closer to the last days I believe as a church we're going to have momentum when we start to see things happen and we start to be encouraged and when we start to share it and when we when we come together you know like really committed people when when that happens I really do believe we're going to see momentum and it's going to be really encouraging in the work will be finished. We have a saying that we've begun to adopt in Michigan and it is the message drives mission. And I think that many people today are losing their fervor for a mission that we once had and I firmly believe that the reason we've lost that for mission is because we've not we've lost the understanding of the message and so I appreciate what you said that truly I think the answer is to not just get up our lawyers and get out there and get some glow tracks because if one converted people are doing that there's no passion to it but what brings the passion is when we come together either individually or as a group and we study begin to study the Word of God we begin to understand the message and then as we as that message begins to transform us we begin to develop a passion or a God puts the passion in our hearts to share that with somebody else you understand and you it just burns within your hearts and then people say well you know my personality on this I'm just interviewed and I'm shy Well there's different ways to share the message but whether you're extroverted sanguinary or enter verge of melancholy It doesn't matter if you have a burning passion to share that message some way that's that's the unifying understood or the unifying result of studying the Bible and what you said was also very key because as we study this message individually and then we come together other people God will start bringing those people together and you're going to realize that hey this person studied the same thing and that person is that and we're all studying the same thing it's a powerful thing and then the desire and the zeal to share that message will come alive again and the God and in our hearts will be surrendered to God and he'll prod his spirit to empower us to do it. Then is there anyone else before we go on to our next question go ahead pastor do this work in a church setting one of the greatest challenges we have is sometimes hurt feelings or frustration between different church members and I read this quote bit ago and it was I thought was powerful is that we must learn to place the best possible construction upon the belt full conduct of others if we are ever suspecting evil we are in danger of creating what we are or allow ourselves to suspect we cannot pass along without sometimes having our feelings hurt in our temperature ride but as Christians we must be just as patient for bearing humble and meek as we desire others to be and so I thought this was imminently practical practical when someone is doing something I consider to be doubtful I'm told to place the best possible construction on that and one of my daughters help me out one time I get really frustrated people get on my bumper it just really irritates me and so this happened one time as we were driving this person was right on my bumper and then they whipped around me and I was just rather irritated and she says Dad you know possibly his wife is in the hospital and she's giving birth and he's rushing to get there and I thought Ha Well that's OK yeah go ahead you know it changed my frame of reference if I thought oh he's not just being a jerk like no there's a reason why he's in my bio then it changed my perspective and so if we can try to somehow put the best possible construction on what others are doing what they're doing maybe could help relieve some of our own frustration Yeah I think it definitely looking just a comment on that I think when we assume the best of other people I think it helps us to understand and place ourselves in their their feet as well to flee maybe one last comment before we go OK go ahead yeah I actually just really want to affirm everything that has been said and agree especially with Dr Sloan that. We can we can look back to the group that has done and we can look back to a time in history when it has been done we can look at the early church ask yourself what were they doing we do the same thing look at the early Advent movement when it 1st started ask ourselves What were they doing and we do the thing all right next question I've kind of. Warmed up everyone to this saw how do you believe the Adventist Church should best deal with the L.G.B. T.Q. community should we allow them to continue their power or try to steer them in a better direction. Yes I just want to make just a quick 1st comment this is such a sensitive subject obviously just in the world that we live in it's it's unpopular to say anything otherwise than what's true for you is good for you. The Bible is clear on it and so I actually just want to just make the 1st simple observation from the Bible that. It's just like any other sin if the Bible says it's a sin you know so no matter what the sin is do we go to that person and you know the way that we go about it should be exactly the same as anything else and so with anything else we're trying to point them to Jesus God to the one who changes the heart we don't change people's hearts and so. Yeah thank you for starting that. I think having a loving perspective towards anyone is what God would have us do God is love and he would have us have a loving perspective. I worked at a school once upon a time and at this school there was an individual that was struggling with homo sexual tendencies and the. As we were talking with the Marines counseling to help with this issue and I was actually confronted by the parents saying no this is not wrong this is not all wrong tendency they don't need to change this is fine it's just way God made them and the I think some of the challenge that we have with some of this community isn't that we don't love and show compassion is that we draw a line and say this isn't right behavior that God has a plan and a design he has for our life and we need to bring ourselves in harmony with it that's where the greatest peace joy and love will be even more in alignment with God's will in our life so I see the greatest tension in this particular genre has to do with the fact that we say there is a moral standard of right and wrong and that we can change God can give us power to change or become what he would have us to be. I don't think we should change on that standard but it certainly should always be done with compassion love and interest. I find this a very very difficult topic because we live in a sinful world and we are born into sin and there is the. Continuation of greater sin based on your parents and in my parents and in. The young people today have a much harder time than their grandparents did with confronting sin we see this in the in the Bible and I share this in different ways with different groups but Abraham sinned by lying about his wife not being his wife you see later his son does the exact same thing to the same kingdom that's the concept that I'm trying to talk about here we know that the brain changes based on how it's treated and that that is also both a cultivated as well as an inherited tendency. So I person can have an inherited tendency toward alcoholism the 1st drink that they drink makes them an alcoholic whereas someone else that's not true for so this is a very sensitive situation because I truly believe that there are people who are born with a mental tendency toward certain certain things and they can't just also can say OK I can't feel this way or or think this way instantaneously it is something that is there and they have to fight against it from the moment they realize that it's there and it doesn't just go away and to try and be sensitive and helpful encouraging and positive. I think is extremely necessary on the part of everybody and it's not just this particular group I don't know if we're everything get to the the question about. Pornography but this to me again it's this thing that in our brain we can keep going down the same path in our thought process and that just strengthens that we can change that pattern. I also realized that there are people who want to believe or behave a certain way and no matter what you say or do it will never change them Christ did not save every single person when he was on planet Earth although that was his desire for you to share prospers Yeah definitely. Appreciate of what everybody was. I want to read the text I read the 7 nights but verse 1st Corinthians Chapter 6 The 1st part is very strong sort of bear with me. 1st here in this chapter 6 verse 9 he says Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God cannot be deceived neither fornicators or idolaters or adulterers or homosexuals or of Sodom mites or thieves or covetous or drunkards or a virus or extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God a lot of people use this tax to say oh you see gay people want to be saved you have to turn away from it but what they also don't point out is that he puts that in a list of lots of other sense that are very common to quote unquote straight people such as adultery drunkenness etc And so yes I don't understand why but the Christian world tends to make homosexuality more grevious and than other sins and some people might think that that's OK but I don't think so because he doesn't say all of these things and by the way the worst of these is almost sexuality he doesn't say that so we have to be careful as was stated not to make it seem like that sin is worse than another but at the same time we have to make sure that we don't make it less than any others. Are you with me we have come to the place where because society is so Penn a culture is so penetrated the church that we want to say oh well we just don't say anything to people and we don't you know we just love them and accept them I think we should love them Next up them I would have lunch with a gay person I would allow a gay person to stay in my house I don't have any problems with that in fact my mother's brother was a homosexual and he died of AIDS in the 1980 S. So I know something about it and so but the reality is that it is a struggle but so is alcoholism. So is the point. So is lost and it's not any worse but it's not any different than any other tendency we are born with these tendencies because we are born into a sinful world but through the grace of God I believe that anything can be conquered so it doesn't matter how you were born you can be born again I mean I don't have any doubts that I mean it once was doubted Well people say well I was born this way and and that was once doubt I don't doubt that people are born with a natural tendency to lean towards that lifestyle I don't doubt that at all I believe that our genetics in our D.N.A. has have gotten so messed up through the ages and through generations of sin that people certain people have it then it's just like other people have a tendency is to alcoholism or drug addiction or whatever but God can give God can renew the mind and he can certainly renew the heart and I know people personally who have truly had victory over that thing and so we need to have love and we need to have compassion we also need to encourage people towards the right thing I want to read this one text and then I'll finish here as the James Chapter 5 Verse 19 is says Brother in if anyone among you wonders from the truth and someone turns him back let him know that he would turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins and so we need to understand that. It's not God's ideal for us. You know when you think about the L G B T When you think about bisexual men God's plan is for one person to marry one person for life correct so if let's just suppose I mean don't misunderstand me here but let's just suppose homosexuality is OK What about bisexual you can have one partner in life and be BI So you are saying I'm saying so there's something totally not in God's order of things with that and so I could say more but I'm talking to and yeah definitely I just want to say again this this is such a critical. Point especially for those people who are struggling with this because as a church I believe that they feel as though they're lost that there is no hope for them so it's extremely important for us to realize that we must be sensitive and caring toward them and Christ is truly our example in this he was accused of being the friend of who sinners of who we all are Pride is the worst sin OK pride is the worst sin so we need to be very sensitive to them and to help them and I do not remember off the top of my head but if you want to talk to me later about it I have actually listened to an audio of a person who was in this lifestyle was a university professor and they lived through this whole lifestyle and they actually marched and they were against Christians and everything like that and how God got a hold of them and change them it is the most powerful testimony of I have ever heard him regardless and they never were looking for God and so it is to God God is in the business of trying to make whole people. And all of us need that if we can if we can live a godly kind loving Christian life for them and and and just what I'm saying is I'm not saying you shouldn't ever dress that addressed the issue but it needs to be done very tactfully very sweetly very kindly but if we keep pointing them to Christ crisis going to bring that reality to their life that was a beautiful ministry coming out ministries good friends of mine all of them and. Maybe many of you have heard of it if you have it coming out ministers You can Google it as one of the most profound and effective ministries that I've seen dealing with the issue in the correct way and we have that's that's the issue is not the issue the issue is how we handle the issue is how I mean the issue is the issue but you understand the one of the bigger problems I see is how we've handled the issue and we've handled it many times unfairly and unkindly but when it's been dealt with kindly and people have had the right examples of the right people and they've been point in the right direction they'd be appointed to Christ and Christ frees them he does a beautiful thing in their heart in their lives. Just as a closing. One friend shared with me this story that oftentimes we there was a smoker that came to a church and there were you know the ashtrays they have. There are like all before you come into church you have to leave your cigarette outside and that's oftentimes how we just as been shared we look at all the sins and we tell people to leave them outside before we come to church but really the church is not a rest home for Saints is a hospital for sinners and I think. A common phrase how many of you heard like Love the sinner not the sin Yeah and I think that's often how we should we should treat other people as well not only in just this case I think in all types of sin you know God for God lying and cheating and stealing all those are equivalent to this and so who are we to say that doesn't is greater or less you know it's our responsibility just as been shared to share the love of Christ with the individual so you're saying instead of leaving your sins side of there we should bring them in lay them on the altar. Got a better idea that is. That is all right I think our last question if time allows us is this how can we have assurance of salvation if it is a simple as simple as accepting Jesus as a savior Why did Jesus not see why did this question has some medical errors I think why did Jesus say not say to everyone who says Lord Lord. Well and OK I'll do my best Lord Lord will enter How do we know how do we know and can be sure Jesus will not say I never knew you that makes sense several maybe I need to rephrase it got it OK. Our hope and trust is in Jesus and not in ourselves and so. I could call myself a recovering thief because in my early life what I did a lot of was steal and I'm a really good thief I know how to walk out of a store with what I want and when I understood the thief on the cross asking Jesus you know to remember me when you come into your kingdom Jesus said to him Verily today right now I'm telling you you're in and so I think we we focus too much on our ourselves on our own weakness and we need to accept the reality that Jesus died for us exactly as we are he died for us sinners that we are and his love for us expands as we fall into sin I am convinced he loves us more then because that's when we need him more and so the way to not be afraid that we're going to be one of those people that says I never knew you is to know Jesus you know and allow him to give us that assurance Martin Luther I think it was Martin Luther who said. You know it wasn't I'm thinking of another quote but the quote that. It's really in my mind I'm sorry. I can't remember it so it's gone now but just the assurance give me a minute here the idea that there's there's we've heard before there's nothing that we can do to make God love us less nothing we can do to make God love us more and what we can rest in is the reality that Jesus loves us exactly as we are and he died for us when we're in sin and when he comes when he says in that beautiful message to the church of Laodicea where we have Behold I stand at the cross and at the door and I knock and I'm knocking at your heart store and if when you open your door I will come in and I will suffer with you I will stay with you and we can have that assurance that no matter what we have done what we are Jesus' love is unconditional and eternal and is not going to change man just a really quick thing just this last question just to keep it between one to 2 minutes so that everyone who would like to share just their last question OK I just like to share that salvation is a beautiful process that shows God's love and salvation is a sink difficult one sink difficult means has to be set aside every day so if we really want to have that to know that you know we want just say a small little prayer and then think that you know we know God will say that he never knew us it's also in us that we God gives us this beautiful opportunity every day that we are able to set ourselves aside for him and every day we have an opportunity to decide do I want to do that or do I not and so this is a question that I ponder for a long time as well and mainly like the main point is that we have an opportunity to surrender our selves to set ourselves apart for God every single day and if we choose to then that's where we can have our salvation. God there's at least 2 ways to view salvation as a business transaction or you know as a relationship which I believe the Bible supports you know I do this if God gives me this that I'm going to make it and there's this fear that oh man is he going to come up with his end of the deal is that what's going to happen is there is this doubt actually. This is I think it's relational there's a doubt as to his character if he's really going to come through with it. To know if we have that assurance the context of Matthew chapter 7 what Jesus is saying is I never I never knew you like in a relational sense that word that being said I believe we can actually look at it like any other relationship you know how do you make your relationship with your friends with your family with the significant other are you learning more about them every day do you care about them do you believe that that person really cares about you if you're going in these things than like I think if you look at that just on the table you can know if you're in a relationship with Jesus or not and friends what it says in God's Word is that if you're in a relationship with Jesus that that he will take you in that assurance can be had right now a man who had so I was out in a canyon in Utah and with my family we were hiking down through this creek and someone had thoughtlessly thrown a beer bottle in there and it broke and so this jagged edge was one of the water none of us could see and as my one of my daughters as well like walking on she stepped on the and sliced her foot badly and. So she felt this pain she cried out and so we see her foot it just bleeding blood is everywhere as a father I'm going to do whatever I can to help her so we bandaged her foot I put on my back we we took her to the doctor they helped stitch up her foot. She didn't need to worry about someone to cure me no Her dad was with her and we were going to get her out to safety and so this idea of him I see that my Nazi God is our Father and we're in his world as sin and we have been damaged by God is going to do every thing he can to get us out and get us safe if our confidence is not in our self but it's in his ability we need not fear a man. So a new one I'd like to add a verse that's you know meaningful to me and that is Romans 12 Do not be conformed any longer to this world to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind and then you will know God's Will his perfect and precious will and so I think when we make that choice that we're going to. Focus on him you know to be transformed by the renewing of our minds how we think that. We won't be afraid that God is going to say to us I don't know you. All right why don't we go ahead and finish and Pastor Pepper is going to share one last thing I think I think today and it's way too big to try to break it all down here right now one minute but I think a lot of people are very confused about salvation. As basic and fundamental as it is and the elements of justification sanctification and glorification and there's a lot of books being printed now even in scholarly circles that really do a lot of damage to the concept to salvation that's really trying to take us backwards to a reformation style. Gospel when that is what was a beautiful thing when it was 1st discovered but since that time God has given the admin a speech will a deeper understanding of salvation. And when you take a look at justification you find text after text. That says that justification is not just simply forgiveness of sin but is actually a transformation that takes place of the heart and that when that transformation takes place we will live a different life. Now sanctification is the process of continuing to grow us more closely a cry said doesn't mean from the moment of justification that I am I'm my actions after that will be totally perfect but some people say that the wind when God forgives me and declares me just because of the righteousness of Christ that is only a declaration. Of statement it's not an actual thing that happens in my life so the question and this is a bit of the ology But the question is when God justifies me when I 1st come to him to surrender my life to him is that just a statement that God makes about me that isn't really true or am I actually made righteous by that justification process that that time that he's justifying me and so I believe the Bible is very clear that when we come to Christ for forgiveness and we are truly surrendering the will completely to God that there's actually a transformation that takes place in the heart and I'm not just simply declared righteous but I'm actually made righteous by the righteousness of Christ and an A not just because listen if God just declared me righteous but I wasn't really righteous that would mean God was telling a lie and how much assurance do I have and the idea that God just says on something that I'm really not know but he makes me righteous not because of my efforts or not because of my own works but because of the works of Christ and then that transforms my heart and as Christ begins to live in within me then the works that I do will be wrought in the power of God and those will be righteous works and I won't be doing works to earn mass elevation I'll be doing works because of my salvation as I make sense and so that sanctification process is a deepening of that justification unskilled that in day by day as I put my faith in Jesus. I can have eventually but the good the faith of Jesus is a sense and and so the faith that I have will actually be the faith of Christ and so God is not just in the business of forgiving us but he's in the business of re storing us back into his image and that's what he actually wants that the fullness of the gospel you know the Reformation Gospel was just simply God forgives you freely which he does but that's not the full gospel the Full Gospel is not that just that God forgives him but he transforms me and he recreates his image in me and it's a it's a beautiful thing that God cannot just create the world but he can recreate my heart that's the that's what I'm going to preach on this morning and I And with that why don't we go ahead and bow our heads for a word of prayer. Father in heaven we think you on the Sabbath morning that we were able to dive into some questions that. At some point I'm sure all of us have asked or will us in the future and I pray that this will not only suffice but it will give a deeper understanding of your character of a God of love and help us as we as we study your words help us to see good and to earnestly search after your will in our lives and we pray that we'll be that light that will be able to help people not only to see Jesus and Him crucified but will be able to see you face to face is all we pray for the rest of the service today and me we leave on only plus a book be a blessing to others in Jesus' name in this media was brought to you by audio 1st 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 or if you would like to listen to more sermons lead to visit W W W audio verse or. Dear Father in heaven we just thank you so much for this beautiful day that she had given to each and every one of us we just asked and invite your Holy Spirit to be with us as we continue on this day of rest minds be reconnected to you where we contemplate your love in your goodness and I pray that your Holy Spirit may fill us with your joy fill us with your remembrances they may never forget who we are in you we just asked that your spirit may be with each speaker that is a part of the panel may place the words within their mouth and make the message plain for each and every one of us here help us to be attentive to the message we thank you so much Father God for your love your mercy and your grace and we continue to ask you to lead us from to do the best for that is a kingdom and the power and the glory forever in your precious and name I pray Amen good morning everyone. All right so at this time we're actually going to have some school panel discussion how many of you be honest have ever had questions in your life yeah especially in your spiritual journey has anyone had questions yeah I know I have and so at this time we're actually going to be we have some friends back here where she going to be asking some questions people have put up on the online website and so we'd be answering those at this time all right so before we begin we're going to introduce everyone so why don't we start with Professor go darn I think so you pronounce it and why don't you mention. Your what you do and also where you're from I am Kathy Goddard and I teach English here at Southern and live here in the area I'm I'm Chris Anderson and I'm a pastor of a local church southeast of there in the church were located at the end of East Brainard road near Brainerd as a 3 year old church with a baby it's brand new you know and I live in Harrison. And I teach at the School of Physical Education Health and Wellness and. I've been here for years. And I love this how many of your 18 here just as long as they're alive you've been teaching here well. My name is Matthew Bronson I'm a graduate from Seoul's West Bible college in Arizona and I am studying Near Eastern Archaeology here so the. Name Is West peppers I live in Michigan and I work in the ministry apartment there for the conference and what was it like where where you're from where you from I'm from Michigan I grew up in Alabama though just our house south of here so I mean as Evelyn and I graduated from Seoul's was Bible college in Arizona and I'm studying something. And I graduated with these 2 guys they're my costs from the Bible College and I'm studying business pre-med here all right so at this time before we begin Can we have another word of prayer just as we dive into these questions OK Father having We pray for spirits we decide. What is shared here I know that my friends could have questions in their own hearts. That maybe they haven't had answers to in I just pray for spirit that whatever is shared your word may be uplifted and we could just share something that we really touch and and says something that's been on someone's heart today in Jesus name. All right 1st question that I have is how do I find my word happiness security in God Is it a matter of truly internalizing and being content with his opinion of me above all slosh any opinions begin. I think we find our worth in God When we stop looking at our self. I think that because we're so human we are very self-absorbed and and I think we can find our worth more strongly when we take the focus off of ourselves and put it on Jesus and start studying him and looking at him and understanding him and I think that's that's the way to do it yes and then for sure go ahead Professor and. It has taken a while for me to realize one very important fact and that is I am dirt literally Well the brother of God in me I'm literally a pile of dirt and it has taken a while for me to understand that I can't look at what other people say or think or treat me to determine my value my value is because God placed me on this planet earth right now at this time for a purpose and not for anybody else's purpose but for his men go ahead Pastor Chris you know so my family I lived in Zambia Africa for a little bit and I learned there that there wasn't price stickers on everything that you wanted to buy you had to negotiate and when you negotiate if there was something you wanted and they knew it you would pay a far higher price so the value of an item was determined by what you were willing to pay and so you would negotiate back and forth and as I reflect on the value that I have as an individual I agree with Judy I'm there but God found something valuable there you recognize that there's something in humanity that I'm willing to pay a price for he didn't go she he said I will pay the highest price in the universe I'll pay the price of my son. God found value in us so hard that it was equal to his son to me that gives me a great sense of self-worth that God loves me that much and I think one thing I think our society is all just places on what other people think of us off the times we don't look at what God thinks of us and think about that when this is something that you go on yeah I really agree with all the responses that have been shared and I was it was my 1st thought you know we need to look to Jesus this is coming from a melancholy you know. I always had really low self-esteem and to be 100 percent honest you know I still struggle with like those thoughts and so so I tried to think you know like that's the truth we need to be looking to Jesus not to self how do we do that practically I think 1st of all we can determine where we are on that scale by I mean just just asking ourselves you know who do we really love to think about like who do we love to talk about who who are we spending our time thinking about. Maybe there's some other like you know melancholy is out there who can I resonate with this before going to sleep at night I would just replay over the day I'm like oh I can't believe you did that that is so stupid and like this and that and and I did it you can even sleep it's so unhealthy in so many different ways but you know you can replace those thoughts like before you go to bed you can go and think about the day how did I say God bless me today how did I see God working in my life and by replacing those thoughts I do believe like you can start to see change day by day and anyone else before we go and just this is a reminder for the speakers you don't feel free if you don't feel oppressed to share you don't have to share for every question so if you feel God impressing you Evelyn is going to share something. Just I would like to share this verse that I think was mentioned yesterday it's 1st Peter's 1st Peter $29.00 And it says but you're a chosen generation or a royal priesthood and a holy nation and his own special people that you may proclaim the praises of him who called you out of his mark darkness into his marvelous light and in turn this verse is very beautiful because there reminds us that we are a peculiar people we're called out of darkness into his marvelous light it's even more beautiful because our self-worth does come from God and he tells us that he would have common died for us if we had only been the only person I would have ever seen and so like mentioned here God sees such a great value in us that he was willing to die not only just die like for the world but he's willing to die for each and every one of us he was willing to die for each and every one of us a man all right so going on to our next question. How do I surrender to God no matter how much I try I can't seem to give my heart over completely to got. Your best yourself so well your pastor. So this idea of surrender there's an interesting tension within this concept because God will not force us in any level to yield our conscience to him we have to surrender that to him and so God respects that and yet he also wants to work in us to willing to do according to HIS good pleasure and so how do we find the strength something that we have to find in in this surrender element. And we're given a picture of that in Hebrews 12 I'm just thinking of that. Surrender isn't an easy thing it's not like oh I just I just it's easy to do no we have to press into it isn't Hebrews 12 verse. To looking to Jesus the author and finisher of our faith who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross despising the shame and the set down of the right hand of the throne of God For consider him that endured such a contradiction of sinners against himself lest you be wearied and faint in your minds you have not resisted until blood striving against sin surrender takes grip it takes pressing into and as we surrender God empowers that and Galatians we're told that as we crucified with Christ Nevertheless I live yet Christ lives in me and so this surrender has to have an element of pressing into as well as an empowerment of Jesus and just to comment on that I've been reading this book called Lessons on faith how many of you have ever heard the lessons on faith and so one thing as well even even for those that are Christians already. I forgot it was 80 Jones I think one of the pioneers he says oftentimes we start our Christian life surrendering to God But then we continue on our Christian journey on our own strength but he says each step of our lives we need to be constantly surrendering to him and he wants. You know the 1st thing that came to my mind was full of beans to verse 13 you know God works on this verse verse 12 it says to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling like not to do it confidently on and then Paul says why in verse 13 for it's God who works in you to waste both to will and to do and I really just actually want to drive this point home just because when I 1st read it I it went over my head I didn't even really think about it to Willis to want you know to do is to do we know God works in us to do things but you know maybe you don't even want to but God works in you even to want to do His will you know. I really just wanted to also just like give a little advertisement for one of my favorite books ever written steps to Christ in Chapter 5. It actually says many how am I to make the surrender of myself to God how am I supposed to do it you desire to give yourself to him we were weak in moral power in slavery to doubt and controlled by the habits of your life of sin your promises and resolutions are like ropes of sand you cannot control your thoughts your impulses your affections she goes on to say like the knowledge of how many times you failed it makes you think that it lessens your confidence that you even can come to God. I really want to read this chapter like go ahead and read it she talks about the power of choice God would never make it so that your choice is violated and and one last thing is that the closer we come to God The clearer vision is going to be you know the closer you get to him the more valuable he's actually going to look the more you actually want to surrender. I think we often look at the wrong actions in our lives. And we say and we try to say I think we often think to ourselves once I get all these things under control then my life is going to be surrendered to God so I have to work on these things and the reality is that the opposite is true is that the harder you work on those things the more difficult they're going to be there have been times in my life when I have given counsel to a person or I have or I've arrived realize a certain thing that needs to change and they just go right out and do that thing myself that makes sense and so the reality is that we we we don't become so we don't necessarily become surrender when everything and our life is an order we make the choice to surrender so that God can bring everything in our life in order to make sense and so that that choice can be made at any time and the reason that you have the ability or the opportunity to make that choice is because God has already made a choice for you he made a choice for you I always used to say that that. Beth be careful I say this that God doesn't do anything contrary to our will or against our will but actually he did it because you know that let me read this to you Romans Chapter 5 Verse 6 for when we were still without strength in due time Christ died for the ungodly Now when you were a sinner and where you were just buried in sin and you were just like well let me just keep reading they'll say this 1st here's a will the righteous man for a righteous man will one die you perhaps are a good man someone might even dare to die But God demonstrates His own love towards us that while we were still sinners Christ died for us. Much more than having now been justified by what we shall be safe from wrath or him for if when we are the enemies if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of his son much more having been reconciled we shall be saved by His life and so when you are the enemy of God If you would have if you would have been asked the question do you want God to die for you to save you you would have said no not interested no things get out of here right but God said you know what contrary to your desire I'm going to do this thing anyway for you I'm going to give you a gift regardless of if you like it or not or if you choose it or not because I care about you and I have an interest in you and I want to do that for you I just read this last night as this comes from. Some knows that I don't why I wrote but I want you to this is very powerful as says Thus it is that Christ dead actually did something for everyone without his or her choice both temporal any terminal but the fullness of this great gift will never be fully realized or experience without a positive steadfast response rather than taking away mankind's choice the cross of Christ is that which it gives them a choice it is the cross of Christ that elicits or draws out a response from every one what will you do with the gift that I have given you says God It is upon this response this choice that everyone's eternal destiny hangs and so God made a choice when you didn't have a choice so that you could have a choice and then he says because of the choice I'm giving you what are going to do with it. And then All right our next question something I think a lot of college students can relate to you especially leaving home is how do I find sauce choose good and godly friends Scriven Scripture tells us the person who would have friends must show in self friendly and I think the way that we choose godly friends is 1st of all being godly ourselves and so if where 1000 godly friends we need to do to develop those disciplines of godliness in our own life and allow God to bring people into our lives. My response would be do you really want them because you always find what you're looking for and if you come to southern looking for godly friends you'll find them if you want to come to southern looking for a party you'll find it just last night I was trying to go to bed and I kept hearing these people screaming outside and blow in these air horns and then I want to outside and I heard this wheeling of tires going so I was doing donuts where they were opening up the Sabbath there were that or yeah I guess so it was like 11 o'clock at night and I was like What are you excited doing you know I would have even thinking and so the reality is if you really want godly friends you can find them it's not that hard you just go to the right places and God will lead you in that direction yes exactly go ahead follow up with it is true if you are looking for a certain group of people you need to go where you're going to find them if you're looking for godly people go to prayer meeting go to church go to places where you going to see them but not just go there get involved I think too often we've become passive in our our relationship with God instead of actually being involved. I go to a very small church and we would love to have lots of young people there and be involved in talk to me later. But you know we we want people to read the lesson be it be a Sabbath school teacher for the adults you're never too young to do that in my view and so just go where you're going to see those people if I want to find. Party friends that drink alcohol I'm going to go to a bar it's not that hard the same is true if I'm looking for Christ. Go ahead ladies 1st OK so I just have 2 practical things One is if you're trying to find godly friends 1st of all if you're if you're ready at this campus it's really easy you can just like they've been mentioning get involved or find a life group go and look at different groups of people different programs Bible studies and become acquainted with them and like they said you will find what you're looking for and I know that by beholding we become changed and so if we really want to be more Christ like and find that good group of people we need to stick with them and continue to just make. Just continue to be friends because by the group of friends that we select We will become more like them and so that's just one thing like forming or becoming involved and just choosing like the right group of friends just a really quick like testimony of myself I had a lot of friends growing up in high school but I never really had like a good Godly Christ like friend and it wasn't until I did this youth program that I met this really great friend and she really helped me what made her different from all my other good friends was that she directed me to Christ and that we were accountability friends so if you really want to find those good friends that will help you that will lead you closer to God make sure that you both are heading towards the same direction of growing each other keeping each other accountable to get to know God better so one more thing my lot to do that you know go home. My grandpa used to say son all through life you're going to have. What you call true friends and then you're going to have so-called friends and he said The so-called friends are going to come and go but your true friends are always going to be there and and the and as I've become a Christian I've reflected more on that and when I have a true friend regardless of what my situation is they're going to tell me the truth and they're going to point me to Christ and they going to encourage me to do the right thing they're not going to just sit and tell me what I want to hear all the time I'm not going to sit and pat me on the back while I take myself down a road to destruction going to say hey what are you doing to come away from that now it's always helpful to have godly friends but I want to help us understand that we cannot become dependent upon got the friends you have to have and absolute dependence upon Christ alone when I 1st became a 7th Day Adventist I became a 7th Day Adventist my senior year in a state university which is very uncommon most young people by the time they hit senior in a city university have left Christianity but I came to Christianity and the 1st church that I went to. It was a church where the I was 22 at that time the person closest to my age was in their late fifty's not that that's bad and then it went up to a few people in their sixty's a couple in their seventies in the eighty's or ninety's so I was like the youngest person by like over 30 years and you know why I didn't care I was so happy to have found the truth of Christ and he was such a close friend to me that not that I didn't want other friends but I didn't I wasn't dependent upon that whether I have them or not I found the prize and I was joyful so I'm not saying that to say don't go off and be a monk or a hermit by yourself is good to have godly friends but don't let that you don't let your spiritual experience become dependent upon that yes exactly I think I saw pass a crowd that I could comment on this is like reading I was reading about health and exercise and they were giving tips on how to get healthier and one of the interesting tips that they had was to find friends that are also healthy and exercising they said the surest way to gain weight is to have friends that weigh more than you or I thought that was interesting so I appreciate the comment that this question is looking to to make a difference in their lives through friends there is one friend that sticks closer than a rather that we can always know will affect our life in a positive way. And I think one of the common things that I saw in this is is service service I think when you when you serve I think when you're looking for to do the same same thing you're looking at the same guy and I think other people will look here left or right of fine people that are trying to do the same thing as all. I'm sorry like this will be short but but we're we're and it's not wrong to do this we're often looking for godly friends that can be a encouragement meant for us and that's good and we need that at times but as I begin to grow in Christ God's going to bring people in my life who need a mentor more than me I make sense and he's going to allow me to be a mentor and a friend to someone else and that's where an exponential growth will take place in my spiritual life so because I'm a sort of that as well. All right let's go ahead and move on to another question. How can we as a church come together and finish the work that Christ has given us to do you know this question is really really germane currently but I don't think it's this is really how it's we must Jesus' prayer was that this church be unified that the world may know that he was sent from God and this is Christ prayer how can Christ prayer not be fulfilled unless we are resisting. And so how the only way is to surrender ourselves to Jesus as it were to let him be our captain and our guide and leadership go and professional Holy Spirit heart work is what we need to be surrendering ourselves on a daily basis and giving up our own agendas and our own thoughts and I think that the way for us to come together is to come to Christ and I think is just like the hub of a wheel if we're coming to Jesus as the hub we're going to be coming close to closer to each other I think we also need to suspend our judgment suspend our judgment of other people suspend our judgment of where we think the church is headed suspend our judgment so that we are not making things happen because we think they're going to happen exactly. Right God again when I think about how this of the heavens church was formed. It was formed because people came together to study the Word of God for themselves to know what God's desire was for them individually and then that's how they came together corporately and I personally feel that there is a lack in in the organization of people coming together to study the Word of God with purpose with intentionality so that they can know what God's plan is for them individually as well as corporately God is desiring to pour out His Spirit in the latter rain to take the message to the world do we desired as much as he can just. Go ahead. You know. I very this is a thought that's come to my mind I've actually never even like shared it before with you guys how many of you guys have tried literature evangelism before you know like you threaten me like that there's some hands and we've actually letting you through programs or literature of Angeles and programs and. First of all before I say that if I could just say at the risk of sounding cliche I believe the answer to the question is we need God's Holy Spirit you know like that really is what we need to finish the work. About literature evangelism there's something I noticed what you're doing is you're taking YOUNG PEOPLE from a variety of places and you're bringing them together just for the same mission and we put them out there in the going into the field and and what we do is we go around to each one and we try to help them we use our experience and we bend every effort and when they start to see success they get excited and they share it too they take the radio right and they share it and when people start to hear it they start to see it's possible something happens throughout the day it's momentum we get momentum going and when that happens you can do more than it was possible if you did not have that is just a thought that I've had I really believe as we draw closer and closer to the last days I believe as a church we're going to have momentum when we start to see things happen and we start to be encouraged and when we start to share it and when we when we come together you know like really committed people when when that happens I really do believe we're going to see momentum and it's going to be really encouraging in the work will be finished. We have a saying that we've begun to adopt in Michigan and it is the message drives mission. And I think that many people today are losing their fervor for a mission that we once had and I firmly believe that the reason we've lost that for mission is because we've not we've lost the understanding of the message and so I appreciate what you said that truly I think the answer is to not just get up our lawyers and get out there and get some glow tracks because if one converted people are doing that there is no passion to it but what brings the passion is when we come together either individually or as a group and we study begin to study the Word of God we begin to understand the message and then as we as that message begins to transform us we begin to develop a passion for God puts the passion in our hearts to share that with somebody else you understand and use it just burns within your hearts and then people say well you know my personality on this I'm just interviewed and I'm shy Well there's different ways to share the message but whether you're extroverted sanguinary or enter verge of melancholy It doesn't matter if you have a burning passion to share that message some way that's that's the unifying understood or the unifying result of studying the Bible and what you said was also very key because as we study this message individually and then we come together other people God will start bringing those people together and you're going to realize that hey this person studied the same thing and that person is there and we're all studying the same thing it's a powerful thing and then the desire and the zeal to share that message will come alive again and the God and in our hearts will be surrendered to God and he'll prod his spirit to empower us to do it. Then is there anyone else before we go on to our next question go ahead pastor do this work in a church setting one of the greatest challenges we have is sometimes hurt feelings or frustration between different church members and I read this quote bit ago and it was I thought was powerful is that we must learn to place the best possible construction upon the belt full conduct of others if we are ever suspecting evil we are in danger of creating what we are or allow ourselves to suspect we cannot pass along without sometimes having our feelings hurt in our temperature ride but as Christians we must be just as patient for bearing humble and meek as we desire others to be and so I thought this was imminently practical practical when someone is doing something I consider to be doubtful I'm told to place the best possible construction on that and one of my daughters help me out one time I get really frustrated people get on my bumper it just really irritates me and so this happened one time as we were driving this person was right on my bumper and then they whipped around me and I was just rather irritated and she says Dad you know possibly his wife is in the hospital and she's giving birth and he's rushing to get there and I thought Ha Well that's OK yeah go ahead you know it changed my frame of reference if I thought oh he's not just being a jerk like no there's a reason why he's in my bio then it changed my perspective and so if we can try to somehow put the best possible construction on what others are doing what they're doing maybe could help relieve some of our own frustration Yeah I think it definitely looking just a comment on that I think when we assume the best of other people I think it helps us to understand and place ourselves in their their feet as well to flee maybe one last comment before we go OK go ahead yeah I actually just really want to affirm everything that has been said and agree especially with Dr Sloan that. We can we can look back to the group that has done and we can look back to a time in history when it has been done we can look at the early church ask yourself what were they doing we do the same thing look at the early Advent movement when it 1st started ask ourselves What were they doing and we do the thing all right next question I've kind of. Warmed up everyone to this saw how do you believe the Adventist Church should best deal with the L.G.B. T.Q. community should we allow them to continue their power or try to steer them in a better direction. Yes I just want to make just a quick 1st comment this is such a sensitive subject obviously just in the world that we live in it's it's unpopular to say anything otherwise than what's true for you is good for you. The Bible is clear on it and so I actually just want to just make the 1st simple observation from the Bible that. It's just like any other sin if the Bible says it's a sin you know so no matter what the sin is do we go to that person and you know the way that we go about it should be exactly the same as anything else and so with anything else we're trying to point them to Jesus God to the one who changes the heart we don't change people's hearts and so. Thank you for starting that. I think having a loving perspective towards anyone is what God would have us do God is love and he would have us have a loving perspective. I worked at a school once upon a time and at this school there was an individual that was struggling with homo sexual tendencies and the. As we were talking with the Marines counseling to help with this issue and I was actually confronted by the parents saying no this is not wrong this is not all wrong tendency they don't need to change this is fine it's just way God made them and the I think some of the challenge that we have with some of this community isn't that we don't love and show compassion is that we draw a line and say this isn't right behavior that God has a plan and a design he has for our life and we need to bring ourselves in harmony with it that's where the greatest peace joy and love will be even more in alignment with God's will in our life so I see the greatest tension in this particular genre has to do with the fact that we say there is a moral standard of right and wrong and that we can change God can give us power to change or become what he would have us to be. I don't think we should change on that standard but it certainly should always be done with compassion love and interest. I find this a very very difficult topic because we live in a sinful world and we are born into sin and there is the. Continuation of greater sin based on your parents and in my parents and in the young people today have a much harder time than their grandparents did with confronting sin we see this in the in the Bible and I share this in different ways with different groups but Abraham sinned by lying about his wife not being his wife you see you later his son does the exact same thing to the same kingdom that's the concept that I'm trying to talk about here we know that the brain changes based on how it's treated and that that is also both a cultivated as well as an inherited tendency. So I person can have an inherited tendency toward alcoholism the 1st drink that they drink makes them an alcoholic whereas someone else that's not true for so this is a very sensitive situation because I truly believe that there are people who are born with a mental tendency toward certain certain things and they can't just also can say OK I can't feel this way or or think this way instantaneously it is something that is there and they have to fight against it from the moment they realize that it's there and it doesn't just go away and to try and be sensitive and helpful encouraging and positive. I think is extremely necessary on the part of everybody and it's not just this particular group I don't know if we're ever to get to the question about. Pornography but this to me again it's this thing that in our brain we can keep going down the same path in our thought process and that just strengthens that we can change that pattern. I also realized that there are people who want to believe or behave a certain way and no matter what you say or do it will never change them Christ did not save every single person when he was on planet Earth although that was his desire for you to share prospers Yeah definitely. Appreciate of what everybody was. I want to read a text I read this the other night but verse 1st Corinthians Chapter 6 The 1st part is very strong sort of bear with me. 1st room is Chapter 6 verse 9 he says Do you not know that the N. righteous will not inherit the kingdom of God cannot be deceived neither fornicators or idolaters or adulterers or homosexuals or of Sodom mites or thieves or covetous or drunkards or a virus or extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God a lot of people use this tax to say oh you see gay people want to be saved you have to turn away from it but what they also don't point out is that he puts that in a list of lots of other sense that are very common to quote unquote straight people such as adultery drunkenness etc And so yes I don't understand why but the Christian world tends to make homosexuality more grevious and than other sins and some people might think that that's OK but I don't think so because he doesn't say all of these things and by the way the worst of these is almost sexuality he doesn't say that so we have to be careful as was stated not to make it seem like that sin is worse than another but at the same time we have to make sure that we don't make it less than any others are you with me we have come to the place where because society is so Penn a culture is so penetrated the church that we want to say oh well we just don't say anything to people and we don't you know we just love them and accept them I think we should love them Next up them I would have lunch with a gay person I would allow a gay person to stay in my house I don't have any problems with that in fact my mother's brother was a homosexual and he died of AIDS in the 1980 S. So I know something about it and so but the reality is that it is a struggle but so is alcoholism. So is the point. So is lost and it's not any worse but it's not any different than any other tendency we are born with these tendencies because we are born into a sinful world but through the grace of God I believe that anything can be conquered so it doesn't matter how you were born you can be born again I mean I don't have any doubts that I mean it once was doubted Well people say well I was born this way and and that was once doubt I don't doubt that people are born with a natural tendency to lean towards that lifestyle I don't doubt that at all I believe that our genetics in our D.N.A. has have gotten so messed up through the ages and through generations of sin that people certain people have it then it's just like other people have tendencies to alcoholism or drug addiction or whatever but God can give God can renew the mind and he can certainly renew the heart and I know people personally who have truly had victory over that thing and so we need to have love and we need to have compassion we also need to encourage people towards the right thing I want to read this one text and then I'll finish here is the James Chapter 5 Verse 19 as says Brother in if anyone among you wonders from the truth and someone turns him back let him know that he would turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins and so we need to understand that. It's not God's ideal for us. You know when you think about the L G B T When you think about bisexual men God's plan is for one person to marry one person for life correct so if let's just suppose I mean don't misunderstand me here but let's just suppose homosexuality is OK What about bisexual you can have one partner in life and be by so you are saying I'm saying so there's something totally not in God's order of things with that and so I could say more but I'm talking to us yeah definitely I just want to say again this this is such a critical. Point especially for those people who are struggling with this because as a church I believe that they feel as though they're lost that there is no hope for them so it's extremely important for us to realize that we must be sensitive and caring toward them and Christ is truly our example in this he was accused of being the friend of who sinners of who we all are Pride is the worst sin OK pride is the worst sin so we need to be very sensitive to them and to help them and I do not remember off the top of my head but if you want to talk to me later about it I have actually listened to an audio of a person who was in this lifestyle was a university professor and they lived through this whole lifestyle and they actually marched and they were against Christians and everything like that and how God got a hold of them and change them it is the most powerful testimony of I have ever heard him regardless and they never were looking for God and so it is to God God is in the business of trying to make whole people. And all of us need that if we can if we can live a godly kind loving Christian life for them and and and just what I'm saying is I'm not saying you shouldn't ever dress that addressed the issue but it needs to be done very tactfully very sweetly very kindly but if we keep pointing them to Christ crisis going to bring that reality to their life that was a beautiful ministry coming out ministries good friends of mine all of them and. Maybe many of you have heard of it if you have it coming out ministers You can Google it as one of the most profound and effective ministries that I've seen dealing with the issue in the correct way and we have that's that's the issue is not the issue the issue is how we handle the issue is how I mean the issue is the issue but you understand the one of the bigger problems I see is how we've handled the issue and we've handled it many times unfairly and unkindly but when it's been dealt with kindly and people have had the right examples of the right people and they've been point in the right direction they'd be appointed to Christ and Christ frees them he he does a beautiful thing in their heart in their lives. Just as a closing. One friend shared with me this story that oftentimes we there was a smoker that came to a church and there were you know the ashtrays they have. There are like all before you come into church you have to leave your cigarette outside and that's oftentimes how we just as been shared we look at all the sins and we tell people to leave them outside before we come to church but really the church is not a rest home for Saints is a hospital for sinners and I think. A common phrase how many of you heard like Love the sinner not the sin Yeah and I think that's often how we should we should treat other people as well not only in just this case I think in all types of sin you know God for God lying and cheating and stealing all those are equivalent to this and so who are we to say that doesn't is greater or less you know it's our responsibility just as been shared to share the love of Christ with the individual so you're saying instead of leaving your sins of the we should bring them in lay them on the altar. Got a better idea that is this that is all right I think our last question if time allows us is this how can we have assurance of salvation if it is a simple as simple as accepting Jesus as a savior Why did Jesus not see why did. This question has some medical errors I think why did Jesus say not say to everyone who says Lord Lord. Well and OK I'll do my best Lord Lord will enter How do we know how do we know and can be sure Jesus will not say I never knew that makes sense several maybe I need to rephrase it got it OK. Our hope and trust is in Jesus and not in ourselves and so. I could call myself a recovering thief because in my early life what I did a lot of was steal and I'm a really good thief I know how to walk out of a store with what I want and when I understood the thief on the cross asking Jesus you know to remember me when you come into your kingdom Jesus said to him Verily today right now I'm telling you you're in and so I think we focus too much on our ourselves on our own weakness and we need to accept the reality that Jesus died for us exactly as we are he died for us sinners that we are and his love for us expands as we fall into sin I am convinced he loves us more then because that's when we need him more and so the way to not be afraid that we're going to be one of those people that says I never knew you is to know Jesus you know and allow him to give us that assurance Martin Luther I think it was Martin Luther who said. You know it wasn't I'm thinking of another quote but the quote that. It's in my mind I'm sorry. I can't remember it so it's gone now but just the assurance give me a minute here the idea that there's there's we've heard before there's nothing that we can do to make God love us less nothing we can do to make God love us more and what we can rest in is the reality that Jesus loves us exactly as we are and he died for us when we're in sin and when he comes when he says in that beautiful message to the church of Laodicea where we have Behold I stand at the cross and at the door and I knock and I'm knocking at your heart store and if when you open your door I will come in and I will suffer with you I will stay with you and we can have that assurance that no matter what we have done what we are Jesus' love is unconditional and eternal and is not going to change man just a really quick thing just this last question just to keep it between one to 2 minutes so that everyone who would like to share just their last question just like to share that salvation is a beautiful process that shows God's love and salvation is a sink difficult one sink difficult means has to be set aside every day so if we really want to have that to know that you know we want just say a small little prayer and then think that you know we know God will say that he never knew us it's also in us that we God gives us this beautiful opportunity every day that we are able to set ourselves aside for him and every day we have an opportunity to decide do I want to do that or do I not and so this is a question that I ponder for a long time as well and mainly like the main point is that we have an opportunity to surrender our selves to set ourselves apart for God every single day and if we choose to then that's where we can have our salvation. God there's at least 2 ways to view salvation as a business transaction or you know as a relationship which I believe the Bible supports you know I do this if God gives me this that I'm going to make it and there's this fear that oh man is he going to come up with his end of the deal is that what's going to happen is there is this doubt Actually this is I think it's relational there's a doubt as to his character if he's really going to come through with it. To know if we have that assurance the context of Matthew chapter 7 what Jesus is saying is I never I never knew you like in a relational sense that word that being said I believe we can actually look at it like any other relationship you know how do you make your relationship with your friends with your family with the significant other are you learning more about them every day do you care about them do you believe that that person really cares about you if you're going in these things than like I think if you look at that just on the table you can know if you're in a relationship with Jesus or not and friends what it says in God's Word is that if you're in a relationship with Jesus that that he will take you in that assurance can be had right now a man who had prosperous so I was out in a canyon in Utah and with my family we were hiking down through this creek and someone had thoughtlessly thrown a beer bottle in there and it broke and so this jagged edges of the water none of us could see and as my one of my daughters as well like walking on she stepped on the and sliced her foot badly and. So she felt this pain she cried out and so we see your foot is just bleeding blood is everywhere as a father I'm going to do whatever I can to help her so we bandaged her foot I put on my back we took her to the doctor they helped stitch up her foot. She didn't need to worry about someone to cure me no Her dad was with her and we were going to get her out to safety and so this idea of him I see them I not say God is our Father and we're in his world as sin and we have been damaged by God is going to do every thing he can to get us out and get us safe if our confidence is not in our self but it's in his ability we need not fear a man. So anyone I'd like to add a verse has yet meaningful to me and that is Romans 12 Do not be conformed any longer to this world to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind and then you will know God's Will his perfect and precious will and so I think when we make that choice that we're going to. Focus on him you know it to be transformed by the renewing of our minds how we think that. We won't be afraid that God is going to say to us I don't know you. All right why don't we go ahead and finish and Pastor Pepper is going to share one last thing I think I think today and it's way too big to try to break it all down here right now one minute but I think a lot of people are very confused about salvation. As basic and fundamental as it is and the elements of justification sanctification and glorification and there's a lot of books being printed now even in scholarly circles that really do a lot of damage to the concept of salvation that's really trying to take us backwards to a reformation style. Gospel when that is what was a beautiful thing when it was 1st discovered but since that time God has given the admin a speech will a deeper understanding of salvation. And when you take a look at justification you find text after text. That says that justification is not just simply forgiveness of sin but is actually a transformation that takes place of the heart and that when that transformation takes place we will live a different life. Now sanctification as the process of continuing to grow us more closely a crisis doesn't mean from the moment of justification that I am I'm my actions after that will be totally perfect but some people say that the wind when God forgives me and declares me just because of the righteousness of Christ that is only a declaration. Of statement it's not an actual thing that happens in my life so the question and this is a bit of the ology But the question is when God justifies me when I 1st come to him to surrender my life to him is that just a statement that God makes about me that isn't really true or am I actually made righteous by that justification process that that time that he's justifying me and so I believe the Bible is very clear that when we come to Christ for forgiveness and we are truly surrendering the will completely to God that there's actually a transformation that takes place in the heart and I'm not just simply declared righteous but I'm actually made righteous by the righteousness of Christ and and I'm not just because listen if God just declared me righteous but I wasn't really righteous. That would mean God was telling a lie and how much assurance do I have and the idea that God just says on something that I'm really not know but he makes me righteous not because of my efforts or not because of my own works but because of the works of Christ and then that transforms my heart and as Christ begins to live in within me then the works that I do will be wrought in the power of God and those will be righteous works and I won't be doing works to earn mass elevation I'll be doing works because of my salvation as I make sense and so that sanctification process is a deepening of that justification unskilled that in day by day as I put my faith in Jesus I can have eventually but the the faith of Jesus is a make sense and and so the faith that I have will actually be the faith of Christ and so God is not just in the business of forgiving us but he's in the business of re storing us back into his image and that's what he actually wants that the fullness of the gospel you know the Reformation Gospel was just simply God forgives you freely which he does but that's not the full gospel the Full Gospel is not that just that God forgives and that he transforms me and he recreates his image in me and it's a it's a beautiful thing that God cannot just create the world but he can recreate my heart that's the that's what I'm going to preach on this morning and I And with that why don't we go ahead and bow our heads for a word of prayer. Father in heaven we think you on the Sabbath morning that we were able to dive into some questions that. At some point I'm sure all of us have asked or will us in the future and I pray that this will not only suffice but it will give a deeper understanding of your character of a god of law and help us as we as we study your word help us to seek it and to earnestly search after your will in our lives and we pray that we'll be that light that will be able to help people not only to see Jesus and Him crucified but will be able to see you face to face is all we pray for the rest of the service today and me we leave on only plus a book be a blessing to others in Jesus' name in 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 the universe or if you would like to listen to more sermons lead to visit W W W audio verse or.

Share

Embed Code

Short URL

https://audiover.se/2RBIeCh