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Our Best Intentions

Benjamin Ng
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  • January 9, 2021
    11:30 AM
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Father in heaven thank you for this time thank you Lord for your word thank you for your grace and your mercy towards us and now Lord we come to that time where you must be lifted up where you must be heard and so I pray that you help us to be silent but help us to be attentive as well and help us to hear the voice of your Holy Spirit speaking to each and every one of us and guide us and lead us we pray in Jesus name we pray and ask a man. The title of the sermon this morning is the best or our best intentions you know when it comes to news resolutions we always have good intentions good desires we don't have bad New Year's resolutions we don't go and have a new year's resolution where we want to be the worst person in school or the worst person in college and in to be kicked out of school no no one has such a New Year's resolution we don't have intentions to go and rather bank that's not our aim for that year or to kill somebody right usually all our resolutions are good ones but research shows that we rarely live out our most earnest intentions however intentions are importance another word for intention is motive what drives us to do what we do that is our motive it's important to have good motives and good intentions otherwise even the good becomes bad when our motive for befriending someone is so that we can get help when they need it when we need it it may seem like a good intention at the beginning but really there is clearly an ulterior motive and our motivations and intentions they need to be pure they need to be good however what I want to show you today though is that even the best of intentions can only take us so far. But you know good intentions they are able to bring forth the worst sorts of evils you know I was traveling in a troubled about 40 countries preaching the gospel and there was one mission trip that I was on an on going to say the the country right now but you know as I was walking by I saw this big billboard It was just plain white and on it had these wonderful words written a better world is possible and at the very bottom right of that billboard was the author's name or the person who who came up with this idea for this billboard signed Fidel I was in Cuba and you know when you when you look at that it sounds like a good saying a good intention striving for a better world but that really is the ideology in the sense of communism it was a seemingly established on good principles good intentions they were trying to get rid of the different hierarchy in social classes such as the upper and middle and lower classes maybe just to make everyone common That's where communism came from the word right to make everyone the same maybe to try get to get rid of poverty right so no one is poor no one is suffering and it seems like good intentions however these seemingly good intentions out of it has spawned the worst of evils in this world corruption at its worst you know friends are good intentions or only take us so far. I want to take us to our 1st scripture This morning we're looking at a few stories in regards to this understanding our best intentions our 1st text is found in Genesis Chapter 4 verses one and 2 and Adam knew Eve his wife and she conceived and bare Cain and said I have gotten a man from the Lord and she again bear his brother Abel and Abel was a keeper of sheep but Cain was a tiller of the ground the 2 1st children of Adam and Eve Cain and Abel Abel was a shepherd he took care of the sheep and cane he was a farmer he took care all grew crops and fruits and vegetables you see very different in character and very different in occupation as well let's continue the story verse 3 and in process of time it came to pass that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground in offering under the Lord and Abel he also brought of the 4 slings of his flock and of the fat thereof and the Lord had respect and Abel and to his offering you see Cain he brought his very best he was a farmer after all he brought the fruits of the ground he probably brought the 1st fruits the sweetest fruits the best crops the most perfect ones it was the fruit of his labor able he also bought the what brought the best as well he was a shepherd so he brought the young land that was perfect it was spotless there was not nothing wrong with this land and he brought it to the Lord and yet the Bible says that God only had respect and whose offering it was only unto Abel's But let's continue. Verse 4 and the Lord had respect rather that I read that already I did the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering God did not regard the offering of Cain why because the fruits and the vegetable did not symbolize the Savior that was to come one day and redeem us from the sin that we had gotten ourselves into it needed a lot in need of the life of a person and so fruit and vegetable some might argue that it has life and it does in a sense but not the life that God breathed into the breath and into our nostrils like the animals do as well and so even though Cain he brought the best of his fruit the best of his vegetables he had the best of intentions it wasn't good enough it's not what God wanted and so let's continue reading Genesis Chapter 4 verses 5 to 7. But answer Cain into his offering he had not respect and Cain was very wroth and his countenance fell and the Lord CERN's Akane Why are you wrath and why is your countenance for them if they are doing well shalt thou not be accepted in and out deuced not well sin Liath at the door and on to the shall be his desire and rule over him you know God actually came and spoke to Cain himself if he didn't know about the correct sacrifice he definitely knew about it now and so Cain was not in ignorance but God He came to talk to Cain and he warned him that if you did not change sin was lying at the door and we all know what happened let's continue reading verse 8 and Cain talked with Abel his brother and it came to pass when they were in the field that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and slew him Cain would rise up to kill his brother and become the 1st murderer he had the best of intentions he had the best of desires he had intentions that had a love for God He worshiped at the same altar he brought a sacrifice even though it wasn't a blood offering but yet he still went against God's desires you see friends good intentions can go against the will of God. And when these 2 are pitted against each other our intentions are good intentions versus the will of God our good intentions will ultimately get in the way of righteousness and sin lie at the door the good intention will ultimately lead you down a path that we ourselves never expected or desired to go down and Cain he ends up killing his brother well you might say doesn't God look at the heart Doesn't he care about what we desire and our intentions and our motives of course he does we should mean well and of course God looks at that he takes note of it but what does our good intention lead us to ultimately in this case it led to the death of Abel and Cain becoming a murderer and so even though he had the good intention what I'm trying to say is that good intentions only take us so far and we have to take a step back and we have to assess how good that intention was based upon what followed it what came after communism seems to have a good intention a good desire but it doesn't have a good outcome does it Cain he seemed to have that good intention worship God brought sacrifice yet God then accepted because it was the wrong type of sacrifice it started off with good intention but when it wasn't accepted it showed that he wasn't willing to be corrected you know there's a saying that goes like this the road to hell is paved with good intentions. We may mean well friends but the end product may be disastrous our actions might show that it wasn't such a good idea after all let's look at another story shall we this one is a bit clearer his name was let's go to 2nd Samuel Chapter 6 starting there in verse one again David gathered together all the chosen men of Israel 30000 and David arose and went with all the people that were with him from bale of Judah to bring up from thence the ark of God whose name is called by the name of the lot of hosts that dwelleth between the cherubims and they sent to set the ark of God upon a new cart and brought it out of the house of a been a dab that was in give and. Go the sons of a bin and drave the new carts and they brought it out of the house of a been a day which was at give me a accompanying the ark of God and our hero went before the Ark. The ark of God had been in the house of a been a dab for many years it was from the time when the Philistines took the ark of God when whilst Eli was alive and his 2 sons have brought the ark into battle and they lost and the op was taken and when it was brought back out finally well because the ark of God played the Philistines they let it go and finally ended up at the house of the been a dab in Gibeah there had been there for a long time and now King David he's king anyone's to bring the Ark back to its rightful place right near to him right there in Jerusalem and so our hero is walking behind is walking behind our hero is walking before in front part of me and who is a is walking behind and they are bringing the Ark back and it's on to it's on a cart and oxen are pulling it now look at what happens next 2nd Samuel 6 verses 5 to 7 and David and all the house of Israel played before the Lord on all manner of instruments made of forward even on harps and on Soul trees and symbols and in corners and symbols and when they came to name a threshing floor was a put forth his hand to the ark of God and took hold of it for the oxen shook it and the anger of the Lord was kindled against and God smote him there for his era and there he died by the ark of God. Uzzah was struck dead by God because he touched the ark what was happening well as they were going I guess the cart must have hit a stone or maybe the oxen stumbled a little bit and the the the cart shock and it seemed as if the ark was falling off the cart and so in the kindness of this art he reached out to steady the ark to make sure it would not fall off but when he touched it God immediately struck him dead why because only the priests and only a certain group of priests were allowed to touch the ark God killed him right there and then on the very spot where he touched it you know friends God is a particular god. Our best of intentions can only take us so far when God says Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy he specifies which day it is the 7th day is the Sabbath of the Lord our God You may think that you can rest better on another day that you can give better attention to God On another day that you don't have to be burdened down by work on another day and that's a good and right intention it seems but God made it clear which day we should keep holy not the 1st not the 2nd not the 3rd all the way to the 6 only the 7th day God is a particular God when God tells us which animals are Ok for us to eat he specifies it clearly in Leviticus 11 God is specific he wants our hearts he wants good intentions but he wants to make sure that those desires those motives those intentions align clearly with what is written in the Bible and it was a new it God was not killing him because he was unawares you see there had been people that had touched the ark before like the Philistines they touch the op but they were not aware of the instruction that God gave and so he didn't kill them but was a was aware of it and even though he was aware he had good intentions to study the ark but God said no no no no you should never touch it let it fall yeah that was God to it was for God to figure it out right but God says no and he killed him right there and then you know friends we might have scientific evidence when it comes back to die that there are meats or proteins that we can eat that will make us more healthy but remember God knows the end from the beginning he was one that created our bodies he has a specific diet for us in these last days and we got to trust him. We might have good intentions for taking care of our body healthier but when God says look there's a certain way that I've specified in my word that I want you to follow we got to learn to trust him no matter how good of an intention we have we got to make sure that we are following his will and His Word coming back to that saying that I showed you truly the road to hell is paved with good intentions good intentions or only take us so far friends so it was a he had that good intention but yet he was killed for touching it let's go to one more story King Saul 1st Samuel Chapter 15 you know King Saul at this time huge already and been making some serious errors at as king in the 1st Samuel 132 chapters earlier he had Samuel had delayed to come to the camp and where they were waiting to go and fight and so what Saul decided was to sacrifice a burnt offering and it was not for him to do no king was allowed to do this they were all waiting for Samuel to come and offer the burnt offering and you know as a result God was very displeased with King Saul and that was back in 1st Samuel 13 in 1st Samuel 15 God gives King Saul one last test let's go there for several 15 starting in verse one. Samuel also said into Saul the Lord sent me to anoint lead to be king over his people over Israel now therefore hearken unto the voice of the words of the Lord thus saith the Lord of Hosts are I remember that which did to Israel how he laid wait for him in the way when he came up from Egypt now go and smite like an utterly destroy all that they have and spare them not but slay both men and women infants and suckling ox and sheep camel and ass the instruction is very clear and God at once Saul to go and destroy the a melon kites and everything from the woman to the children to the oxen to the she will all the cattle nothing is to be left a life and I'm not going to figure out why God said that that was not the point of our study this morning but the instruction is very clear it's very specific but what happens God gives Saul the victory however verse 9 but Saul and the people spared a gag and the best of the sheep and of the oxen and of the fat Ling's and the lambs and all that was good and would not utterly destroy them but everything that was vile and refuse that they destroyed did Saul obey no he didn't and when Samuel all arrives at the scene he confronts solve the king and he is still in denial and he gives a good reason as to why he left all the cattle all the animals alive look at the house all response to Samuel when Samuel says you did not obey God look at what happens verse 15 and Saul said they speaking of the people. They have brought them from the it's for the people spare the best of the sheep and of the oxen to sacrifice unto the Lord thy God and the rest we have utterly destroyed 1st he blames the people can you believe it as if he the king had no power to stop them but secondly he says that the reason why they spared all this cattle is so that they could sacrifice to God good intention we want to give God the very best good desire good thoughts of right yet when Samuel tells Saul that he disobeyed he still adamant that he did obey and just left the best sacrifice to God Look at how some Your replies verse 22 have the Lord as great the light in burnt offerings and sacrifices as an obeying the voice of the Lord behold to obey is better than sacrifice and to hearken than the fact of rams Samuel he basically tells him God does not desire all these sacrifices you had good intentions you had good desires and the verse it rings clear to us today does God take pleasure in your good intentions especially when it goes against the will of God God prefers obedience over our good motives. Obedience is better than all the very best of intentions that we could ever have as we're even thinking about God for all these things but God says no that's not what I wanted I wanted you to destroy everything I didn't want you to sacrifice a single thing to me God says you had the best intentions but that was not my instruction that was not my desire that's not what I wanted you to do and the question that we must have for ourselves today is this friends are our thoughts in line with God's thoughts are our ways his ways so it starts off with the thoughts the intentions the desires Yes but then his ways are his ways our ways are we doing what he wants us to do are we following his instruction and not just all God I love you and do the very best I can even though I'm going against what you want me to do Christ he uttered this parable that rings even down to our time today in Matthew chapter 21 verse 28 to 31 Christ he gives us parables of the various E.'s but really it speaks volumes to us especially in what we are studying as well today Matthew 2128 But what think ye a certain man had 2 sons and he came to the 1st and said Son go to work today in my vineyard and he answered and said I will not but afterward he repented and went and he came to the 2nd and said likewise and he said and said and said I go sir and went not whether of them twain did the will of his father they say answer him. The 1st you see the 1st son he initially said he was not going to go but he repented and he went then he comes to the 2nd son and the 2nd son he says yes there are goal but he ended up not going we don't know whether he got busy with something important we don't know what the reason was but he had a desire he had intention to goal but he ended up not going you know friends as we looked earlier the road to hell is paved with good intentions however the road to heaven is paved with obedient faith faith is what is stored up in here Faith is what gives us the mind of Christ the desire to do right the good intentions it is faith that comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God it is that word that God wants to use to wash us wash what not our clothes but our minds because our minds are filthy our minds are full of evil thoughts before we have ever said a bad word we thought it before we ever did something wrong we thought it and God He wants to wash us with His Word He wants to make us clean but leaving it there is never good enough knowing what is right and desiring to do what is right is never good enough good intentions my friends are not good enough they make us feel like we're on the right track but they lack the power to get us to where we really want to go you see many people will be lost. They will be on the road to hell desiring good things but unless we put into action that which we know is good today we will come infinitely short of eternal life is like the man of Romans 7 who cried out I know what is bad and I keep doing it I know what is good but I never do it this man is full of good intentions but he's never able to put into practice what he desires to do good intentions only take us so far friends unless Christ can live in us so will and to do of His good pleasure friends is like relationship the 2 where it says we are crucified with Christ Nevertheless I live yet not I but Christ Live Earth in me how the life that I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God friends it is through faith it is through His Word that he empowers us but remember it is the spirit that must water the seeds of truth that will grow and spring up into everlasting life it is that living water it is the born of the spirit experience and unless we have this deep and abiding relationship with Christ where we're willing to trust him with our lives where we're willing to allow him to live in and through us we will only and ever have good intentions friends look we what we need today is an entire surrender of our will to him many of us we make these excuses I'm not ready. I'm not ready for this and I'm not ready for that hour when will you be ready when the time is right and you know they'll tell me such things and and will make appeals as we study the Bible the time passed that you know if I do it now and I'm not ready I'll just I'll just break a promise I don't want to make any promise I don't want to try I'm not ready but friends how do we know when we're ready to follow Jesus we will never be ready unless we are willing to surrender unless we're willing to say God. I'm willing to let you come in and clean my heart to live in me to live through me and when we find that that happens when we allow Christ's word to embed in part of heart and we ask for the Holy Spirit to give us the strength to live it and apply it His will becomes our Will his thoughts become our thoughts his desires become our desires his tastebuds become our tastebuds his fashion sense becomes our fashion sense we become like him in thought and the only way to change in thought my dear friends is to spend more time with them last week I asked you to make goals spiritual goals have you made a spiritual goal to spend more time with Jesus in this coming year if not the Word of God will be to use a yoke a heavy burden that is difficult to bear and you'll always have that excuse at the right time I'm not ready yet but friends you will never be ready unless you allow Jesus to live in your heart you know so often we end up doing things we ended up practicing Christianity not because of faith. But because of our surroundings because of the people that were with for me it was the environment that I grew up in I always went to church on Saturday because that's the day I just went it didn't mean that I knew the truth it didn't mean that I had a relationship with Jesus is because my parents chose that day when they accepted Christ it's possible to do things that are seemingly right by accident but to continue to do it to have a change that goes beyond a week or 2 weeks or a month or half a year it requires an entire surrender of our will to him Look how do you know if you need to surrender or not today. Think about anything in your life that you're withholding from Christ is there something in your heart or your life that you know is not right but you're not ready to let it go what is it is it something that you're eating maybe consuming is it something to do with your job is there something to do with the relationship that you're in and you're just finding it hard you know I say diet because that's the thing that really strikes us hardest the most is something that we use used to eating all our lives and now you're telling me that I shouldn't I should stop yes for this and the reason why we can't is not because of I am not ready because it will never be ready until we let Jesus into our hearts to live in and through us friends. This is where appeals are a hard over the internet this is where it gets difficult because you know our you know what when we walked forward when we went to make appeals and ask people to walk forward it requires a concerted effort and a very clear decision as to why I'm doing that you know that's why appeals become important friends it's so easy to just sit back and relax and watch this video but not make any decision for Jesus but friends I'm asking for that decision today I'm asking you to make a decision for Christ where you are right now to say God I want you to live in and through me I recognize that there are areas in my life that are out of harmony with your word and I realize now it's because I've not been willing to surrender to you so Father please help me to be willing if this is your desire I want you to pray with me in your heart that your words my words rather would echo the sentiment in your heart that you would be willing to pray with me as I pray that you would make that your prayer that you would make that your desire to say Jesus police help me in align my life with yours help me to be willing to surrender everything to you and you will change my desires you change my tastebuds you will change my thoughts you would change my motives you changed my purposes you would change my priorities and I'll come out a better person at the end of it is that your desire friends police by you had with me as I pray let's pray show you Father in Heaven Lord we realize that motives and intentions can only take us so far and it seems like every year we make New Year's resolutions but we fall infinitely short of them. But father we want you to strengthen 1st our hearts and minds to make sure we make the right New Year's resolutions have the right goals and aims in our lives and then Lord I ask that you please strengthen us that you'd help us that you would help us to surrender a lot to allow you to come in and clean our hearts from the inside to the out that you would live through us so that your thoughts would become a thoughts your desires would become our desires and especially your ways would become our ways Lord Father we don't want to keep going round and round. Desiring good things and then the next week we fail and fail miserably Lord we want you to please help us and guide us and so Father please help my brothers and sisters help me Lord that you live in us to will and to do of your good pleasure and that ultimately those pleasured will become our pleasures as well fill us with your Spirit Lord without which nothing can ever change and help us to that and lot that you would give us good intentions and that you would give us. Faith filled What as well. As Zona spleen frail or. Helpless to be like Jesus is coming. We pray in Jesus' name. Amen. This media was brought to you by audio verse a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse or if you would like to listen to more sermons leader visit w w w audio verse or.

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