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Preparing the Church for the Last Hour Mission Part - 3

C. Raymond Holmes

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C. Raymond Holmes

Pastor, missionary, retired seminary professor, and author

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  • June 19, 2019
    10:45 AM
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Father thank You for this new day thank you for being here at this cat meeting and we pray that your Holy Spirit would be with us this morning as we look into your word on the Empress troth upon our minds and hearts in Jesus' name amen I want to say something else too that's not in my notes but it it really is motivated by a little discussion we had here before all of your arrived and we were talking about the fact. And I said that I believe that God raised up the I had been movement in the mid 19th century because he knew what was coming in other words there's a purpose for this denomination to be here and we call our church the remnant church based on Scripture and you know what a remnant of just the last piece of cloth on the bulk of cloth while the last piece is identical to the 1st piece which means stuff the remnant church is supposed to be identical to the op a stall a church in other words we represent the truth as it was presented by the Apostles unchangeable that's what's needed today and I want to read you a couple of passages from 2nd Timothy if you want to open your Bible because it fits into the context of what we've been doing this week look at 2nd Timothy Chapter 3. Beginning with the 1st verse but understand this that in the last days there will come times of difficulty for people and I have a sermon on this text I call people are the problem for people will be lovers of self. Lovers of money proud arrogant abusive disobedient to their parents ungrateful unholy heartless unappeasable that is to say you can't satisfy them about what you do slanderous without self-control brutal not loving good treacherous reckless swollen with the conceit lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God having the appearance of godliness but denying its power of boys such people for Among them are those who creep into households and so on while what that as a grid on today's world and then look at chapter 4 to getting with the 1st verse and this passage was read at both of my ordination into the Lutheran church and into the advantage to urge the same text and in Michigan at least it's read at every ordination service I charge you he's writing to Timothy Paul as I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus who has to judge the living on the dead and by his appearing and his kingdom preach the Word be ready in season and out of season in other words when things are going good or when things are going bad be ready to preach the word reprove rebuke and exhort with complete patience and teaching for the time is coming when people will not and tour sound he changed but having it Ching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passion and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you always be sober minded and or suffering do the work of an evangelist fulfill your ministry why does he say endorse suffering because if you preach the word you'll get into trouble because the world doesn't like God's word and I like to ask young preachers then ministers it says to repro and reveal. What happens when you reveal you get into trouble you know what the secret is and I when I taught preaching up to 7 I always up asides it's not the preacher that does the rebuking it's the word that does it. He says preach the word and it's the word that reproves and rebuke and exhort but the preacher has to preach the word in love not in a condemning the Tory way but in an appeal either way Ok turned back to John. And John is a fascinating person he is a stirring and example of one of of one whose whole personality and character has been transformed by a close relationship with Jesus and the Gospel of Mark tells us that when Jesus appointed the 12 apostles he called Simon Peter which means rock and he called the 2 brothers James and John sons of Sumter that's found in Mark 3 Burr 17 and apparently those 2 brothers lived up to their nickname John was Alice an ambitious he was an opinionated debater. He was at sometimes a bit wrecked reckless on him Petro us and even intolerant and he was argumentative even but as he month toward in the faith he my load and became tender hearted and that's what's supposed to happen to us as actually what should happen to every one of us as we grow all in Christ John became the kind of man that I would love to have as a friend I suppose that's why he appeals to me I don't know. About always have I what has cost Paul and his epistles have always been the favor of the mine and Anyway John he fit Paul's description of I'm a poor believer as Paul says in a fusion is for 151 who quote speaking the truth in love grows up in every way and to Him Who is the head Christ Now if you hear anybody say that headship is a new idea among advantage that's nonsense it's in the Bible at Chip as in the Bible we just read it grow up in every way into him who is the head Christ is the head of the church and so this sum of thunder became known as the apostle of love why then doesn't the apostle of love begin his letter by talking about Love Actually he does though we may not think so at 1st because John knew that to love Jesus is to love his word and to love his word is to love Jesus not to cannot be separated from each other and. And his gospel chapter 14 versus verse 23 he quotes Jesus as saying If anyone loves me he will keep my word and my Father will love him and we will come to him and make our home with Him Jesus says oh ever does not love me does not keep my words and the word that through here is not mine but the Father's who sent me and so John begins this letter about instead of talking about love east it begins by talking about walking in the light of truth and not walking in the end darkness he talks about confessing sense about forgiveness about being cleansed from all unrighteousness he talks he talks about self-deception he talks about keeping the commandments as the evidence of knowing the father in the psalm that's how he starts this letter he talks about walking in the same way the Jesus walked in other words he's talking about the of transformed life and when John wrote the 2nd chapter forced a mercenary through 6 and let's read the whole of chapter 2 verses 3 thru 6 and by this we know that we have come to know him if we keep His commandments whoever says I know him but does not keep his commandments as a liar and the truth is not in him but whoever keeps his word in Him Truly the love of God is perfected by this we may be sure that we are in Him Whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he was when he wrote those words. He must have remembered an event occur many years before that when an angel had come and left him and Peter and and the other apostles out of prison they were put in prison by the high priest the Jewish High Priests and the Sanhedrin but chose to do with priestly court because they had been preaching the gospel and winning many many people to faith in Jesus as the Messiah and he must have remembered those brave words of Peter and the other apostles what as they spoke to those religious political leaders now let's turn to Acts chapter 5 Acts Chapter 5 hours 29. But Peter and the Apostles answered we must obey God rather than men they said to the religious authorities John was there he was one of them he heard it he saw it he participated how could he forget it after the after then they were severely beaten then they were charged in verse 40 and says one day had called in the apostles they'd beat and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus and then they let them go and what did they do 1st of all they rejoiced that they were counted worldy to suffer dishonor for the name of Jesus and then incredibly verse 42 every day in the temple and from house to house they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as a Christ in the other words they were not intimidated by the religious authorities they practiced. What they preached and what they preach was to obey God not men and they practiced that they lived that the Word of God is the highest authority not high priests not the Sanhedrin not church councils not popes or other religious leaders not the CLI's eos tickle her announcement not sociological studies not culture not human tradition and not certainly not articulate scholars by the way the the Lutheran church that I was a part of and you see if I go to recall this. They were doing a study on gender and they established a commission that worked for a number of years to come up with a statement My memory is failing me oh yes and it was not a Biblical study it was a sociological study I don't know what would have happened to me if I had not if the Lord had not intervened in my life and brought me into the revenant church I would have a real problem today with that kind of thinking on the part of the church and those kind of the events. John participated in such indelible memories must have had a a profound effect on the way he thought about the faith in the words his developing the ology and also about how he lived the life of a follower of Christ lifestyle you know there there are products themselves there think Adventist are nuts you know because we practice healthful living we abstain from certain foods and they think we're crazy I used to love pork chops I don't need them anymore why. Because of what the word says not because of what the church says of what the words have and what's wrong with health living anyway. What's wrong with abstaining from alcoholic beverages and drugs. And tobacco come on who is nuts. Anyway John does not equivocate has thinking is clear it's not fuzzy he's not ruled by sentiment but by truth he doesn't that's a light you know thinkers of our day do not like absolutes and many of the atheists say there is no there is no absolute. And they say that absolutely that's right. But John does like absolutes he doesn't hesitate to make clear distinctions between light and darkness faith and faithlessness sin and right just as the troll on the fall how do we know the difference. Study of the word that's what that's the absolute. To follow the Word of God is called Faithful ness and his logic is relentless and he draws an unmistakable lion and that's why I like John as gospel has always been my favorite and drawing lines like that is certainly not popular today so they it's fashionable to ignore line people don't like the 10 Commandments because there they are respective today it's fashionable to ignore these lines these absolutes to bend to them and ultimately erase the. And brave people like John are rarely appreciated by the less brave they think that he's stupid or Rumpy old man that's me I'm a grumpy old man. Now if the Church of the last hour is incapable as John says of distinguishing between the Spirit of Truth and the spirit of error or strong for verse 6 it will not be prepared to meet the demands that are required in fulfilling its mission in the last hour we have to be able to distinguish truth from error and there is only one way to do that and that study of the word what does the Bible say so as we let's continue our study of 1st John as the Holy Spirit by beans of discord of God prepares his church to meet those demands remembering the To Be forewarned is to be forearmed So open your Bible to 1st John Chapter 2 of begin with Mercy 711 I'm writing you know new commandment but an old commandment that you had from the beginning the old commandment is the word that you have heard at the same time it is a new commandment that I am writing which is true in him and in you because of darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness whoever loves his brother abides in the light and then him there is no cause for stumbling but whoever hates his brother is in the darkness. And walks in the darkness and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded as eyes and then down the bursts 15 do not love the world or the things in the world if anyone loves the world the love of the Father is not in him for all that is in the world of desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions is not from the Father but is from the world and the world is passing away along with its desire of whoever does the will of God abides for ever now he begins to talk specifically about love and he introduces the section with the salutation beloved and uses beloved and little children interchangeably and chapters $2.00 and $3.00 but he uses beloved exclusively in chapter 4 it's a term of endearment at means adored cherished. Treasured and it takes a guy like John to use words like this and you know we really don't expect it because after all he's a man and men don't talk like that that might even make some of us men on easy especially if we find it difficult to express feelings. I remember when I was 17 my mother died of a brain tumor and I had an awful a hard time at the funeral we were sitting in the funeral home right in front of the her casket. And he said to me men don't cry. Really. And you know as you get older you begin to get about the past and you remember things my father was never an affectionate man he had he never hugged me and you never told me he loved me but I was the years went by I I knew he cared about me he did things that he indicated that he cared but he could never express stuff and I remember the last time I saw him as I was walking out the door I stopped and I turned on and I said I love your pa I could never call him Dad or Daddy I said I love your pa and his response was Yeah yeah yeah. I had a sermon on the Sean tower radio made broadcast of I don't know any way. Some men just expressing feelings might might make some of us are music especially if we find it difficult to express our feelings Yes well. It. Was. Well well I don't have time to get into it but I think you're probably right. But in my my father's case he was an angry man because of things that happened in his life prior to that that I didn't realize or that I learned later when I became a Christian the Holy Spirit opened my mind to understand my father so I hold nothing against it. Anyway John doesn't hesitate to share his feelings and why not the fact that he uses the word truth at least 13 times and love at least 37 times ought to help us understand why he makes it undeniably clear that truth must always be presented in the context of love love is the motivation for truth nothing else is what motivates and prepares the church to meet the mission demands of the last hour John couldn't help but do something about it in other words in fact God had to do something about it why because it is his nature so those so God could do no other but send His only begotten Son into the world that he loved that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life God loved the whole world and he did something about it and John sudden like no other New Testament writer in just 3 words God is low or gone for a God so loved the fall in the world that he did something about it and his Church the Body of Christ as his messenger of redemption must so love the fallen world that it does something about it and in this letter John tells the Church of the last hour what that something is this is precisely why we have evangelists and Bible workers and amazing facts and it is written and and secret some sealed in every and 3 a.b.n. This is why we had this this is why we sacrifice our means to support these ministries because our church is doing something about it. And over all it is what we do is to stake uncompromisingly true to the word and that is what energizes the church to fulfill its mission John says in chapter 2 verse 14 I write to you young men because you are strong and the Word of God abides in you and you have overcome the evil one in other words we are where we should be determined to tell the truth about the truth to walk in the light as he is in the light not compromising the truth not bend it to accommodate culture not abandon it tore whatever other reason many of our sister churches out there denominations are have adopted evolution as opposed to bible creation that's what happened back in the 1960 s. when I was a young Lucerne minister investor and my wife was the superintendent of a vacation bible school for that year and she got the materials and she opened the cartons and looked through it and then she came to me and she said we can't teach this this is not cult this is not creation this is evolution and I looked at it and sure enough I packed it all back send it back some to letter and told them why and believe it or not the 7th Day Adventist Church in Ironwood the church I pastor now they had a vacation bible school that summer and their emphasis was on creation they had and my Mrs big for my wife from childhood to material so it already started in the mid sixty's and still going on our. Say that again I didn't hear. Yeah. All right. So it's only oh by the way that abandonment of creation with evolution was followed by same sex marriage and it's continued but it's only one we walk in the light that we are guaranteed fellowship with one another and the assurance of the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin chapter one verse of it I remember distinctly a meeting of Lutheran pastor in that area and I don't remember the subject but we were talking about what I felt inclined to defend the authority of scripture and one of the young pastors who was a recent graduate of the same 7 hurry that I had attended. It came up to be and very vehemently put his finger in my face was almost touching my nose and he said the day is coming when people like you will not be allowed in the in the Lutheran ministry. And it was not long after that that my wife met Mrs Bickford and things started to happen it wasn't easy as I mentioned I resisted Yes what would have happened to me if the Lord had not intervened in that kind of a way I couldn't have stayed in that church I could not but what I have gone and what I have done is only when we walk in the light that we are granted guarnteed fellowship one with them with one another how could I have fellowship with the young pastor or people like him. John says Chapter 2 verse 24 let what you heard from the beginning abide in you if what you heard from the beginning abides in you then you too will abide in the Son and in the Father and his in his 3rd little letter verse for he says I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth no compromise no deviation faithful and so he says verse 7 after 2 I'm writing you know new commandment but an old one that you had from the beginning the old commandment is the word that you have heard there is no suggestion that what he is saying replaces the word that they ahd that they had already heard from God That's the point he's making what he's saying when he says I'm writing you know Newcomen what the old was from the beginning he's saying. What I'm saying does not replace the word that they had already heard and when he uses the term old he doesn't mean that it was inadequate antiquated on able implement are ineffective he means does it is longstanding and has existed for a long time it's venerable it's well advanced it's priceless of transmission of the Word of God The commandment is an unbroken chain of divine revelation and having made that point of connection between the old commandment of them knew he then says. Chapter 2 verse 8 at the same time it is a new commandment that I'm writing to you which is true in him that is in God and in you because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining it's not new in the sense that it cancels and takes the place of the old but new it's new in the sense of a precious start on the part of God's people it's a new beginning and verse mind helps us to understand what is new so what is new is the spiritual quality of the old that had been lost in accumulated religious traditions truth is only credible one it is demonstrated by love that's the whole point of what John is trying to make in practice they go hand in hand truth and love he says in chapter 2 verse 9 and 10 whoever says he says he is in the light of God's truth and hates his brother is still in darkness whoever loves his brother abides in the light and in Him There is no cause for stumbling and then he also says in chapter 3 verse 11 this is the message that you have heard from the beginning that we should love one another and again in chapter 3 verse 16 he says By this we know love that he laid down His life for us and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers and then Chapter 4 or 7 Beloved let us love one another for love is from God and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God and again in chapter 4 verses 20 and 21. He says if anyone says I love God and hates his brother he's a liar for he does not love his brother whom he has seen head out he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen and this commandment we have from him whoever loves God must also love his brother but remember love and truth go together you can't separate them we tell the truth because we love we tell God's truth because we love just like God does He love the whole world so he did something above he sent his son and it works like this to walk in the light abide in the light as to walk and lo God's truth must be practiced by his people if their witness is to have any redeeming effect why do you think a lot of these churches that have been compromising on solo strip Torah are losing members their witness has no credibility because they are denying they have denied is true and it works like this if you love the Lord you will love his truth if you love His truth it will love the Lord if you love the Lord and His truth you will love your brothers as he does and share his truth with them so that they can find salvation and that's exactly why we do what we do I don't know of any church to you that has ministries like a basic facts and secret some sealed I'm voice a prophecy and it is written I don't know 3 a.b.n. that has kept meetings like this when I began as a Lutheran we used to have bible camp they were called Bible caps. Now they're not called Bible camp they're called Lutheran camps and every time we drive from our house to camps a goal up we go through Crystal Falls and we drive by Fortune lake and that's precisely where I had that conversation with that woman that I told you about on Monday who didn't have the assurance of salvation of all of the forgiveness of sin and on the sign there and doesn't say Lutheran Bible camp it says a Lutheran cap and then underneath there it says folk dancing and it gives you the day and the time it would have been on say a ball back dead but now they do I just love this cat need. I hate to think that I'm not going to be able to come in on 90 and walking funny and. You know everything it's getting harder to do. What I love I love can't mean it I've been doing this for years on that's just the way it is and so if the Church of the last hour is going to be prepared to meet the demands of the last hour mission it cannot love the world that's what Paul John says we cannot love the world do not love the world or the things in the world if anyone loves the world the love of the Father is not in him now that sounds contradictory doesn't it love your brother's love people but not love the world it sounds contradictory we've been talking about the church loving the fallen world like God loves it and doing something about it now he says not to love the world but he draws an unequivocal line you saw doesn't chapter 2 verse 15 If anyone loves the world the love of the Father is not in Him world here. Refers to those things are hostile to God and to take the church are away from him and then he tells us what he means by the things in the world of desires of the flesh lust the desires of the eyes of pride and possessions and the one in whom the word of God abides knows what John is talking a ball without having to go into all kinds of details to talk about how serious this is for the end time church hold it for the last hour church for the remnant church you know if we follow the contemporary trends we're not going to be able to refer to refer to this church as the remnant anymore. Not term will eventually. Would eventually disappear this media was brought to you by audio perhaps a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio version or if you would like to listen to more sermon leave it to w.w.w. dot audio Verse dot org.

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