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Leadership in an Immoral World: Inescapable Culpability

Ron Kelly
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Ron Kelly

Senior Pastor, Village SDA Church, Berrien Springs, Michigan



  • April 24, 2021
    10:00 AM
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Yesterday was a big day at the Kelley home he had was the birthday of my oldest son so we arranged for my daughter to be here this weekend and we had 5 of the 6 immediate running calling Kelly members of the family there along with my mother and father in law a dear aunt and we sat down to eat lunch because that was the only meal this was going to work with and he said What time was I born and I beat his mother to the answer. 10 o 9 firstborn child. Last major step out of boyhood into manhood I had been married for 5 years the hardest thing for a boy to do is become a man but as I sat in Memorial Hospital in South Bend the last prince was crossed I listened this week to amazing testimonies and powerful messages that reminded me that the most elemental things of life are God's major teaching instruments when Andrea Decker said in a chair right here and was being interviewed by Wayne Blakely I was praying for the right answers I need not have been too terribly worried for God when he starts to lose analogies that seem to be making sense grabs on to the ones that are the easiest to understand and a woman might forget her nursing child but God is not going to forget us it is marriage m. parenting and there's a whole family scene that defines God's experience in relationship to his own children and the bond he desires to have with them individually as I was thinking about those questions about when your child comes out. And some of the advice that's being given I'm thinking particularly of the line not to look disappointed I couldn't fathom for a moment how anybody who had taken a child from the cradle to adulthood and pour themselves into that little bean. Could be so disingenuous as to somehow cover up the grief associated with that moment I'm so thankful for for the ability to love in spite of having us of heart and to keep learning in spite of ignorance about some things. But I'm here to tell you today. That God knows how and he's well able to teach his people how. To love the sinner and hate the sin it's called parenting one o one if you've never signed up then take a cue from someone who has. Love someone else's child as close as you can dip errant teen and you'll figure out that this is really a pretty simple thing and it's woven deeply into the fabric of every parent's heart I'm holding in my hands a book that is very very well intended and it's been talked about several times this week it's called guiding families I would never for a minute want to diminish the well intended Inus of the primary author who is not in administering the contributing authors to try to make it at this but it is not and I didn't hear every word of every meeting that was shared with the elemental problem with the book is that it is based on a cultural lie. And it is the law I the from the very 1st chapters of the Bible down to the very end is the whole point of the Gospel and that is the idea that somebody is beyond the reach of a transformed life and a God identified identity. Going to read a little sentence out the front part of the book again I want to do nothing to impugn the intent of the authors but intent does not liberate one from being misguided. This booklet This is the 1st paragraph of the book there is a bind page and I'm reading from this line right here that I've highlighted in pink this booklet is not designed to address the finer points of the ology biological social or legal issues I'm not going to read any more but in this age of empirical science and statistical analysis in this age of collecting in man in Jena deriving meaning from data you need to understand something the god of this age has become the measurable. The false science from which we subjugate the inspiration of God's ancient eternal words the designer's words to 2nd class practicality and importance there is no finer point about identity and sin and salvation there are no fine points that we can afford to miss and we certainly cannot afford to miss the broad strokes to cure by Moses more if you want it open them up to the book 1st Corinthians chapter 13 1st Corinthians chapter 13 I'm going to give you some of the most basic. Components of Christian teaching you could call it theology I want to start at the end of the Love Chapter I consider it a great scripture from which to launch a sermon in tied to leadership in an immoral world in escapable culpability this is what it says 1st Corinthians 13 versus 11 when I was a child I used to speak like a child think like a child reason like a child when I became a man I did away with childish things that one line men listening to me today especially men. Would be important for you to think about as we live on the cusp of the coming of Christ big boys is not the solution to the world's problems for now we see in a mirror dimly but then face to face now I know in part then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known we know in this society cording to the data and I'm certainly not against data I just try to figure out which data is inspired and which isn't based on inspiration could someone say amen. According to the data are young people take longer to grow up today than ever before and I don't think you need to be a social logical scientist to figure that out you just need to be an employer or a parent when I celebrated my 31st birthday I had one charge one child and I had 2 children. The idea that someone knows themselves in their teenage years is a developing concept. The idea that this man could write this in his middle life is an illustrated observation that he himself understood the journey of self discovery was one onward and upward with Jesus Christ Himself the idea that I could be known by someone better than I know myself is not a theological fine point it is the point of an intimate relation with Jesus Christ our Creator our e.d.m. or and our restorer. When David could write in someone 39 that I can't go anywhere without you God I can't get up I can't lay down I can't go to the far side or the dark side I can't think of thought without your knowing it before it's on my tongue these are not theological fine points they are some of the most practical hopeful encouraging and sometimes condemning dynamics of our life and the idea that we would somehow affirm identities that are in the developmental stages and wandering through the desert of dysfunction and confusion in regards to morality is absolutely unbelievable to me obviously there are elemental things that some have not really thought about I think especially of this famous line that I grabbed onto as a young preacher as I heard Pastor Mark Finlay share it it went like this is says x. pression deepens what impression. Every time you act out an ugly impatient word it's like fertilising the weed in your heart to be impatient and angry and irritable and every time you deny it in the strength of the Holy Spirit It's like with holding water and food from. Every time you do something loving and kind every time you stoop to be humble and thoughtful and careful and considerate it is if the very person is in a journey of God likeness we call it sanctification take your Bibles and turn to the book of Hosea Hosea chapter 5 that that 1st big minor prophet Hosea find the Book of Daniel and go just a little bit farther. Your mind is the kill and then you. Read in from the New American Standard will begin with Verse 3 I know it for him and Israel is not hidden from me pretty powerful statement I know my people for now Ephraim you play the Harlot. Israel has defiled itself now I want you to catch this verbiage in verse 4 because it is a powerful spiritual law their deeds it doesn't say their thoughts I know that sin begins in the mind and works its way out to the thoughts but I know the thoughts acted out from evil deeds shapes the character and makes the person their deeds will not allow them to return to their god for a spirit of harlotry is in them and they do not know the Lord friends let us not forget that expression deepens impression and doing is becoming That's why every time I didn't know I and un-Godly lusts. I am finding victory through the living Jesus on the inside and it's transforming the outside and sometimes I start with the choice not to act before it the motivation to act is extinguished but God slowly powerfully gives us the victory and sometimes decidedly and in the moment but whichever way the journey with him is his presence his power his purified love is still very much alive. I want everybody in this generation to know something that in this post modern generation from which we are not immune the frog has been warmed into that lukewarm cattle this generation values method over message this generation values technique over truth. Just try to correct your your children. And if they're all born legal like like mine were they're quick to tell you what your faults are and totally deflect from what the main problem is and that you're a generation and from in front of them and have poured out your life in love to them yes they're becoming their own child their own adult their own person but I want you to know something because the 1st group this morning that I want to address in this inescapable culpability are the parents. Every parent that neglects their child for more money more education or more fun will be held accountable. There is no power strong enough the church and the church school are not efficient enough to overcome a worldly version of parental modern day suppose that Christianity. If there is no church at your home and it's an arcade or a theater or it's an area a wasteland of neglect and apathy no church and no church school no pastor and no teacher can overcome that kind of culpability. It was overcome in my home but that's because my home was not a professing home I didn't have the mixed messages of someone saying Do as I do know I had the clear message of don't do as I do do as I say if I wouldn't of met Jesus Christ in my early teenage years I wouldn't have married my wife I would have been selling celebrating the birthday of Nathan which means gift of God yesterday I wouldn't be standing here before this afternoon it is the damning effect of a home that is very Laodicean that is dragging down our ability to actually love like we should love and confront like we should confront and encourage like we should encourage we're stuck because of leadership issues. And I need to be careful I've done this parenting thing I'm still doing it 4 times over and I'm in that really dangerous wasteland where I look back at everything I've done. With the maturity of a 57 year old man and I can see mistake after mistake but the one mistake I did not make was failing to do the best I could do to love my kids and they won't be able to do any better on that regard. Because I put off my post-graduate studies and so did my wife and I refused opportunities to go to bigger churches because of them. And I chose what kind of car I drove and what kind of a cations we took because with them my wife is priority number one their priority number 2. And that's the best thing I could have done for them to I'm not here this morning to step on any parents I'm here to challenge everybody who still has influence over somebody that's coming behind them because you are the closest friend they have and the wounds of the scripture it's as if some people have never read this that the wounds of a friend can be trusted but an enemy multiplies kisses the weak and the pliant Aarons are among us there in some halls there in some schools there in some administrative positions there in some churches but it doesn't work look at his 2 oldest children and what became of them there is no such thing as tough love and unless tender love preceded. Police parents don't be too busy and too stressed Don't be too distracted and too ambitious where your children. Jesus isn't lowering the standard for our kids and he's not lowering the standard for us we are call to make sure we don't buy comissioner omission place a millstone around their neck let alone ours our children should not be being babysat. By virtual experiences on real devices I can remember as a student with Andrews University going down to the Smoky Mountains 2 different years and you know we'd always make the same loop we'd come out of kids' Cove we'd go up onto the Appalachian Trail and we come down off the trail and we'd had back into caves cove and we always had to cross Abram's Creek The problem with crossing Abram's Creek is that it's the mountainous river and depending on how much rain was in the Smoky Mountains which in the month of March was a decent amount the river flowed swiftly. I want to tell you crossing a swift flowing river with something that weighs a lot on your back it's nice if you can hang on to somebody while you're crossing and if you lose your footing you're not going down and drenching everything on your back we want this kind of linkage spouses the cowardice to confront dysfunction in a home for fear that your reputation might be tyrants and to institutionalize that dysfunction I didn't say to run to the divorce lawyer you may have to move out of the bedroom before you move out of the house and you may have to move out of the house before you move out of the marriage but there is a God in heaven who can err view so that the cycle of dysfunction can be broken parents and teachers what's hanging on the walls in your children's room boy that sounds so old school. That picture of Abraham Lincoln that I believe hung on my wall doesn't it seem like an eon ago maybe the more pertinent question is what's due in on the little 3 by 5 screen as they sit with their back against the wall so they can see you walk into the room and flick the thumb and be somewhere supposedly sanctifying. Please don't forget this one long God's not changing I plucked this off the wall of the Bible room at Wisconsin Academy 2 weeks ago while I was there this is what it says with permission. It is a law it is what friends. Of both the intellectual and spiritual nature of the by beholding. We become what the mind gradually a dabs itself to the subject upon which it is allowed to dwell is it any wonder that the sexual revolution of the sixty's has morphed into the sexual addiction. Of the 21st century is it any wonder knowing that only 3 percent of our kids have not been exposed to pornography that we now have all kinds of dysfunction Listen friends whether you're addicted to pornography or some other form of passion the savior you love has the power to set you free if you will accept an identity and a lifestyle. That has power to transform unsupervised children and by the way I put some statistics up at a recent business meeting it was a chart that was going down rather precipitously I want to tell you that not only are those statistics correct that we are going out of business unless something changes that the birth rate from 1974 on to the 50th year after that base or 40th year after that which is about where we're at is remained relatively stable. The precipitous drop in birth rates for children came in the sixty's in the fifty's and I want to go a little bit farther than that lest you think we're not living in a crisis I said nothing about the fact that probably. 2 out of the 3 remaining boarding academies in this union are subsisting on voucher money from the governments and probably the next $2.00 biggest elementary schools are 2 and if that voucher money was ever polled we would see an implosion the likes of which we've never seen in Christian education. If ever there was a day for parents and teachers and church members to band together in prayer for the salvation of our kids it's today they are absorbing this culture's message because they are involved in the social media like no generation ever before us and all the advertisements and all the messaging and all the words the things that are out there to see they have an effect because it's a lot. The mind and the spirit. Are molded by the matter they be honed pastors Did you listen to the scripture reading Are you afraid of that person that has a lot of money are you afraid for your reputation and your career you could never be a parent and be afraid and be a good one and you could never be a pastor and be afraid the wolves are out there the wolves are circling the flock the wolves are devouring the flock and if you run away at least you can identify yourself as a higher. If you can stand in the pulpit and in the love of Jesus remember folks this generation loves technique over truth your pastor may blurt the words out in strain in stress in fear and in fretting he may not have said it exactly where he should have or the elder or the parent but if we could be blunt sure enough to get beyond a feelings experience and say Is there any substance to what was said does the truth matter is there a real issue beyond the superficial galaxy's of the skin of method and I'll tell you my mother drilled into me as a kid all over and over again Ronnie it's not what you said it's how you set it so I get it don't try to take something I've said here today and make it say something I'm not but if it comes down to cowardice or bumbling through the message choose the bumbling. If I never had to deal was another addict of this or another addict and that would be great and if the curve to go the other way because of the uplifted Jesus and love enough to run into the fray like David did and he said Mr Bear you're not having one of my sheep tonight Mr Wolf this is not your supper I am here to protect the sheep the problem is some of the sheep kicking bite and some of them head but you don't think sheep do that and Broadview Academy farm manager had a ram and I want to tell you it was bigger than most any dog and it had the power to knock down adult men. And people sometimes didn't want to get out of their cars because of that Ram He probably made some watchdogs look like it again. Pasturing with people who are not committed to the word with people who are not living it in their homes with immature Mamas and Papas and doting grandmas and grandpas who don't understand what real love looks like and how it's defined is a difficult thing to do but it's not changing pastors unless somebody has the kindness the courage and the love to say do em b. And by the way this is not the age of the professional pastor where you turn your cell phone off so you can't be bothered and you are advancing in your career with your extra learning but you're letting the sheep be preyed on by a predatory generation I didn't say there's no room for a few boundaries I've done this for 30 years and how many meals have been interrupted and how many of a family vacations have been delayed my children are quite functional plenty of room to grow but I'm here to tell you a deeply rooted love with Jesus a strong love in a married relationship has given myself and my wife. Overflowing strength and energy to care for people and if you care for the people pastors eventually they will figure it out and come back to you in time of need hang on and pray the prayer contend with those who contend with me and save my children it Minister raters Do you understand administrators yours is not anything but it in ministration of the word Anything less hireling. Wisdom Yes timing yes but this morning I want to assure you we will all be with out excuse when we practice the immorality of cowardness on faithfulness to God and neglect. Do you remember that Jesus was almost thrown off a cliff they didn't invite him to potluck they invited him to a rapid descent in his own home church the remember that he almost experienced stone after he said the self-evident truth that before Abraham was in John Chapter 8 I am do you remember he was slandered for taking Zacchaeus is invitation to share food do you remember he was abandoned by the masses for saying unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood do you remember that Jesus was be true trade because of a conflict because he confronted a thieving dark hearted disciple Do you remember he was struck on the face for speaking the truth to the High Priest or that he was denied justice by a spineless Roman governor who loved applause. Do you remember he was spat upon mocked in derided while hanging naked on a cross we have incrementally abandoned the inspired definition of love in the inspired word of God and we've embraced false science and gotten dysfunction as a result. I want to remind you what the Bible says to those who believe in on him he gave them the power to become what the sons and daughters of God that mystery is as powerful today as when visiting with Nikka Demas and he said nigga Demas you don't get this you should understand it but you don't get this the wind blows where it will and it has an effect that power is still as available today as when Jesus ran into a man and his friend one of them was named Legion you can be certain by inference out of the desire of Ages they were worse than practicing homosexuals of today for they practiced the violent form of lust and yet Jesus not only set him free and heal him he said the way to stay free is go talk about me and he did it and when Jesus came back others were drawn and one too much to say too little time to say take your bias and turn to Genesis Chapter 33 important things you cannot leave this message without hearing. Genesis Chapter 3. Inescapable culpability because there is a Holy Spirit. No one will have an excuse because he warns the world of convicts the world of sin. And of judgment and of righteousness no one is getting out without personal responsibility Genesis 315 if you accept the idea of modern social logical and psychological science that a person must forever identify with the sexual orientation you are denying 3 basic things from the 3rd chapter of Genesis here they are Verse 15 has 2 of them number one you're denying the 1st promise and I will put what I will put m. unity between you and the woman that's not talking about Adam and Eve that's talking about the seed that. Of Adam and Eve and the serpent If God cannot keep his 1st promise what makes us think he can keep any of the rest the 2nd thing you're denying is the 2nd half of the verse he shall bruise you on the head and you show bruise him on the heel. The 2nd promise is that Jesus would go into the pit with the snakes and would be bit but before he got out of the pit he would step on the head that moment came 2000 years ago on Calvary when he stretched his arms out on a cross and he suffered he could have died in just 70 but no it's not enough we need to see the real say in for who it is and so Jesus dies on a cross and calls out victoriously it's done it's finished and the power of that cross followed by the power of the resurrection is what Paul uses in his apostles to tell us what kind of power is available to that person who desires to be transformed Yes you were didn't 9 the power of the cross the death the burial and the resurrection when you take your identity from some modern statistical analysis and the 3rd thing you're denying. Turn here we're not going to sing the closing him we're going to go here instead Revelation 14 Revelation 14. There's one more thing that's been denied and it might be the most important thing to know about. 0 from Genesis 33 things from Genesis 3. Chapter 14 of Revelation and I saw another angel verse 6 it's line in the midst of heaven having the one the everlasting gospel except that's a bad translation it should say turn a gospel. The word is eternal which means the Gospel goes back before the fall of sin and it goes long after the sin problem because the Gospel is God himself that's what Jesus said this is eternal life to know the one who sent me and you know me now go back to Genesis 3 I want to know where the Gospel is Oh you say it's right there Jesus stepping into step on the head I show no it's far before then Genesis Chapter 3 go back we're bound done Genesis Chapter 3. Verse one Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God evening. And he said to the woman has indeed God said You shall not eat from any tree of the garden what a smash there psychologist the direct quote is You shall not eat from the tree in the midst of the garden friends what with the world be like today if they would have listened to the 3rd problem. Without identifying yourself in any context other than the love of God It is this you must remake the definition of love to exclude truth to exclude the law to exclude the things that actually protect love that warning was gospel that warning was love to not touch that Cheree would have been a gift to you and to me and if you must make your identity out in the sense of modern science you must redefine the what love is and the laws got to go the truth of the matter is the law protects and defines in some measure at least the outer limits of what love is especially when the inner sanctity and sanctuaries been surrendered I want to remind you this morning friends he is able to save to the uttermost some say the gutter most those who come to God through him since he always lives to make intercession and lastly for this message this morning thereby are given in to us exceeding great m. precious promises that by these you might become partakers of the divine what nature. I'm here to tell you this morning it is not the finer points of theology that create the compromise launching pad for the message of this book there are many things in this book that you could take good advantage of courtesy kindness thoughtfulness all of these things in this book are good. But the idea that we accept an identity with the be set in sin a soul destroying identity in anything except Jesus Christ. Is none of finer point of the ology I want to say today you matter your loved. Those things are unconditional. But if you like to enter into a saving relationship with Jesus in be long in a different relationship instead of just the pre conditional love of God It is the surrender of the entire self parent it is the surrender of the entire self teacher it is the surrender of the entire self pastor it is the is surrender of the entire self administrative is the surrender of the entire self so you may not be able to sit home and watch your favorite sick come all the churches preying on Wednesday night Oh Pastor Why couldn't you have ended the sermon sooner it's only principled Christianity that can talk if you don't want to hear the Holy Spirit speaking about if you want to hear him speaking about the things you're desperate to know about you're going to have to learn to listen to him when he steps on your toes and he a prompts you to the inconveniences the church is powerless it appears go back to last week sermons to overcome the skepticism of the world it's not Ok with Jesus it shouldn't be Ok with you I'm here to tell you this morning you're loved and matter what you've done or where you've been you matter no matter what you've done or where you've been and as one preacher said this week the price is already been paid for you to be long now and in eternity but if you want to go past the a God they love God and let him change you and give you everything he's already paid for and you must surrender. Every fast and let Jesus lead you a step at a time a day at a time all the way to the new life the New Kingdom the restoration he has in mind may God give us the decider and then we take the resurrection power the empty promise and the Gospel definition of love which does include limits in law and there we go to heaven inside the heaven of the presence of Jesus Amen let's pray Lord if ever. We needed to know your character emulate your methods have your Divine Love which breeds courage it is today was every hurting heart every heavy heart for forgiveness when we've had superficial relationships with you and superficial relationships with each other and superficial relationships with the word and our own kids and our church members we traded in on the inconvenient intimacy which is so wonderfully better and so absolutely worth. Far may we be Lulu have been and lovable Christians who know how to stand up in a world that calls right wrong and wrong right in and when they walk away from us learn may they be wrestling. With what we said. Because they know. They really do love Jesus really do love. In Jesus name I pray 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 service later visit w w w audio verse or.


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