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Always Giving

Chester Clark III

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Chester Clark III

Pastor, Evangelist, and Educator

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  • August 7, 2015
    9:15 AM

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We've looked at a number of characteristics of Father Abraham the father of the faithful who of course we've seen that he was a father not just of many nations but also of all those who believe I believe even at the end of time maybe even especially at the time which is a number of his characteristics he was a stranger in approach build around he was willing to leave that which is comfortable on and do that painful work of detachment as well as attachment. We've seen also how how Abraham was was somebody who was regular in his and intentional and his worship and his teaching and his instruction he built altars on on a regular basis where every winter and what an example that is today we're going to looking at another characteristic of a brand we can look at many in fact as I studied his life I found that there's just so many so many attributes of Abraham. Besides lying part that that is dry the troubling. But the so many attributes of a brand that we can learn from that we can we can we can see. Council instruction and and I guess a model for us living in the last days when we look for example of the story of the that the rescue of the kings of the valleys Ottoman more on the others and we see how Abraham would not take any money or any reward from those the plunder of those cities and you remember what he said he said. Less anyone say that that that you have made Abraham rich in other words the wealth of Saddam was not what he wanted he wanted to and he wanted people to know that he was prosperous if he was brought up was because God blessed him wasn't because he won the lottery or or you know something that was was not I mean he didn't he didn't approve of the lifestyle and all in the cities so he couldn't be enriched by it but today we're going to look at just briefly at another characteristic of Abraham it in. Presses me as I look at his life as I look at his character it impresses me that he was always giving he was always working to try to to bless others and benefit others so if you have your Bibles you can just look with me we're going to we're going to begin with with some passages from the life of Abraham here and we're going to begin in Genesis Chapter thirteen and this is verses eight and nine. Genesis Chapter thirteen versus eighty nine you remember that when Abraham left Irv the cow disease there were some family members who came with him and a number of relatives I'm sure it wasn't just a broom and Sarah. A few goats left or of the kale these they must have been a group of them but one of those who came was his his brother's son. Lot and of course lot of becomes famous or infamous later on because of his own decisions that were somewhat different than those of Abraham and you know what as I think of this the contrast between Abrams decisions and lots decisions don't you think that those those those two sort of pathway still exist today I mean it wasn't a lot wasn't a a person who love the Lord is just that he didn't prioritize perhaps the the obedience of of God and applying the things that he knew to be true in his life but this is what happened Abraham's a very rich and cattle and silver and gold it says in verse two he settles and verse five lot also which went with a broom had walks and herds and tents and the land was not able to bear them it says that they might well together for their substance was great so they could not dwell together verse seven says there was strife between the Herdman of Abrams cattle in the Herdman of lots cattle and the Canaanite and Perez I dwelt there in the land. Verse verse eight now says. The neighbor I'm said to Lot let there be no strife I prayed the between me and the and between my Herdman and by Herdman for we be brother and this is this is we could just stop right there for a minute couldn't wait there's always going to be differences that arise right as all the always going to cause for contention there's always going to be something that comes up and says well we don't see eye to eye and in the church there's always going to be those opportunities I suppose drian churches have those those opportunities as well perhaps but I know when the churches that I pass through the churches I've been a member of there's there's there's sometimes of been have been issues that arose and you know it's really amazing to me the the type of issues that churches will split over I mean you have the proverbial color of the carpet right. What color are we going. Carpet we're going to put in the same sure in churches get into not down drag out fights over such trivial things like that. I've heard stories of you know churches that couldn't agree on what kind of food to bring the pot luck and I mean what's the point of having pot luck if you're going to if you don't get along well enough to bring on these things you know I haven't heard of one church that they decided that you know you shouldn't use aluminum pans a cook anymore and some people said oh whoa whoa why the big deal in the church blit over whether that use aluminum pans to bring food to pot luck or not and I look at these things and I think we need to follow them PL of a brand I mean Abraham said look there's problems either stress between us. This is not worth fighting over right this isn't something and we're not going to fight over this for because we are one of the say we're brother and there's more that unites us than that which divides us right we're not going to fight over these things that aren't really that important anyway and you know I'll be honest with you I if I hate the color of the carpet it won't really be. Bother me that much do you ever notice that you go to church long enough you don't even notice the color of the garbage I mean what does that take three weeks you just really don't I mean it's like your own house you you know you if you have a cluttered corner somewhere after a while you don't see it anymore but when someone when someone walks in is there was a void jumps out in or when you go to someone else you know what I'm talking about right you just tune it out like we don't need to fight over these things. I'd rather die early from I don't know I'll find is from having aluminum pans or something and and and have of fellowship while I'm alive than live my life with my stomach tied in knots and enmity and bitterness and and resentment because we've been fighting over something that's so trivial like we have eternity to get along if we can get along now what are we going to do throughout all of eternity I don't like the color you painted and you know used should be used gold is at a silver on in my neighbor's house you know in heaven I suppose there's going to be. Personalities still right we're still going to have uniqueness and we're still going to do things differently but the good news is that in heaven. We're all going to get along and we're all going to be brethren Why say we're brother now we should all get along so there are many things in a brand lives that we can just look and say well if we get is apply this to our life we can see why Abraham could be called the father of the faithful. Abrams said let those drive be between me and you for we are brother and verse nine is not the whole land before you separate yourself I pray you from me if you will take the left hand I will go the right hand of the old a part of the right hand and I will go to the left as though Abraham is very simple as I look there's a whole world out there right. There's no point in and that's fighting together and you know there are some other wisdom here in what Abraham did I think Abraham was a pretty wise man he had a he had a steady call the hand that that we read about paychecks and probs yesterday that as he governed his household. Abraham could have said well we need conflict resolution we need to get these herdsmen together and we need to say OK this is what how we're going to deal these process you all have problems we should be getting angry and run. Rocks of the other herds up and and you need to you know start he could have just tried to deal with the problem you know down I'm saying and because technically we're brethren our workers work for us right we should be able to get along here. And yet Abraham knows that not it's not always it's not always wise to put yourself in positions where there's going to be perpetual conflict in a down I'm saying and I was thinking about that the day you know I was thinking about how how when we sometimes sometimes we we deal with the fruit and not the root you know it's easy for us to get excited about the problems and and try to fix the the fruit that we see without dealing with the root of the problem. Sometimes we need to be much more proactive and back up a step or two and say and say this is what we're going to do and when we talk about I don't know much about raising kids because I don't have any kids but I did work with teenagers for fifteen years and so I know a little bit about teenagers and I was boys Dean and so forth and Todd and I've learned a little bit through the years and one thing I've learned is that you know it's not good enough just to just to chastise your kids for for getting into a problem or for misbehaving in a certain situation. Sometimes it's best for us just not allow them to be put in that situation they never realize they weren't and you don't you know but you never have to deal with the issue. Called being proactive isn't it. I remember one of the things that I really appreciate you know my I've heard different avenues for my generation say things like this why I grew up I hated Sabbath because I couldn't do this and I couldn't do this and I couldn't play with a ball and I couldn't ride my bike and I couldn't do this and I could do this and there's a whole laundry list of what you couldn't do. Meanwhile my parents were out you know in the bedroom sleeping often. And I thought wow you know I never grew up that way my parents are very conservative they they were trying to follow the Bible to support a prophecy as well the well the good I don't think they would claim to be perfect parents and I don't think they're perfect parents but they tried that right Art and there were things that we didn't do on Sabbath. There's no doubt about that but I'll tell you one thing I don't remember I don't remember being confronted with those brick wall very often where you know you can't do that you can't do that you can't do that what I remember is my parents took us hiking on Saturday afternoon they did out were there we were doing things together with them on Saturday afternoon and what happens is if you're proactive. Well then the kids never realize that they can't do something because you already planned for something something for them to do right and so so labor Ham is using a principle here is not just dealing with the fruit in trying to micromanage a situation he's trying to say let's avoid the situation to begin with and let's let's let's let's separate from each other you know I've watched some of the parents that I really admire the parents that that have kids that have turned out well that sure I'm sure if I knew you all better would be would be learning much more from your families as well but some of the families that I've just really admired I'm not is there something in common with them they have they have stayed a step ahead of their kids in you know. Ellen White says that we have a responsibility to choose or friends for kids and you think well how in the world are going to do that you know I mean kids just feel like friends naturally happen. Well the way I've seen it happen is that is that instead of the kid saying Mom can I go over to to you know Billy's else or Joey's house or whoever's house the parents of already invited the kids over their house see. And let's have a party next week but they're staying ahead and so so number of these families a dive would march from a distance or from close up. I've watched and and their houses are like party central I mean it must be a lot of work must be a lot of work you know but there are always and that's how they choose their kid they're inviting the kids over to their house and doing fun things and and and so they don't have to say no they don't say you can't spend time with them because they're filling the lives of their kids with good things so that the Zambo we see from Abraham is being proactive be saying let's not just try to fix the problem here. Let's avoid the situation that brings about the problem to begin with is not the whole way and before you now this is a very interesting because I think in the eastern culture and the culture that Abraham would have been from an a pager Arkell culture he would have been the as the elder he would have been the one that was eligible for the first choice right we're all familiar with that fact I mean it's it's quite amazing that Abraham is of the character that he didn't say look I'm going here. Want to just go over what you just go over there but we're talking today about Abraham's quality of always giving and when I talk about the quality of always giving I'm not talking about philanthropy I'm not talking about paying your ties and offerings. What I'm talking about is having a heart that doesn't think of me that thinks of others that's what I'm talking about him we we touched on it earlier this week we talked about how the recon to regime really could be distilled into a contrast between the character of God in the character of of the enemy. Right the character stated selfishness versus unselfishness self-love versus a got they love a gap we love seeks not its own right and it doesn't even when it gives it doesn't expect anything in return it love unconditionally that's a got they love and the character of God is such that he doesn't think first of what do I get out of this situation. But what can I give in this situation that's the first impulse of the heart of God and as we become like Christ as we are our hearts are transformed our first impulse will become also not what can I get out of the situation but what can I give in this situation. Abraham is even though culturally and and I'm sure it's just a matter of common sense and ethics that a lot should've had the second choice. Abraham instinctively give love the first choice even though he says his his nephew and perhaps just as surprising as Abraham's behavior is lots behavior and my mind I mean I mean a lot should have been you know a quick thinker anough that he would have said look I'm the nephew you're the uncle I followed you here you're the one that is our Patriarchate instructors in the ways of got huge take the first pick out take the second big I want to tell you something though when we when we allow ourselves to be the giver when we allow ourselves to be the one who gets the second choice the second pick we never will actually end up the loser. That's something I really believe that that when Lott looked out Lot did not have the always giving a got they love heart that his uncle Abraham had it seems to me because when he looked out he said Oh sure I'll take first choice and he looked out he looked over the the landscape and there's options to choose from now up here where they're at where Abraham is chosen to dwell a sort of in a remote area it was an a high area and if you know anything about that part of the world it's the valleys down by the rivers are where the green grass is growing like an oasis along the rivers and the hill country is dried aired its practically desert scrub type of place you know and here. They are they're looking around and and Lott says well I can go anywhere I want. Obviously my crib my herds are going to grow fatter they're going to go faster they're going to be healthier if they're down there in the valley down there where that green grasses that verdant those verdant fields that are just lush with plenty of food for my for my livestock and Lot says I'll take the valleys. I'll go down there a brand says Fine I'll stay up here now common sense would say that lot in the end is going to be the winner financially you know economically and Abraham's going to be the loser. Well the problem is and we won't take a lot of time to talk about living in the cities because we've heard some of that in the mornings of Jane's testimony in this testimony that we've been Shivan has been shared from Spirit of Prophecy but a lot moving close to the city I don't think you know if you read the story I don't think that he actually said I'm going to move into Sodom and Gomorrah Saddam but he moved close to the city and pretty soon you know the his kids' friends were from the city and they were doing more things in the city and and just sort of gradually freezing they said well you know you know when we go shopping as sort of a pain and and and you know let's let's get a city house so we can stay over there on the weekend be their friends and whatever and pretty soon they were just living in Saddam and that's just sort of the way it works is sort of a gradual you don't even you know realize how this happen that you're you're all of a sudden you're in a place where and it's not that lot believed in the lifestyle saga I have every confidence that Lot was a present truth God fearing man but he didn't take action on what he believed you know sometimes it's we think it's good enough just to believe in KNOW THE TRUTH AND Annan lot lost his family and in the end and if we can just look at this the head of the story here in the end. I mean not only did they go through the trial of the captivity capture and volves ottoman in the in Saddam is burned with fire and brimstone by the by that by an act of God and lot ends up losing most of his family. Looting is why he ends up losing all of his possessions and Abraham living up there in the scrub his wealth is continuing to grow you know there's a song a sad little as much when God isn't it and I know it's hard for some people have made decisions to you know first on for spiritual reasons for for matters of conviction. Make decisions that aren't economically the wisest decisions or the most prosperous decisions but I can tell you that in the in God blesses and the Bible Jesus teaching is so relevant still today when he says What shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world and yet loses his own soul what are we willing to trade our salvation for what are we willing to trade our children for Abraham takes second choice. He ends up probably where you would have chosen to be anyway but he in that in the end having a massive household bust beyond belief. Financially as well as spiritually and Lott loses everything and what a what a story that is and by the way you know I don't often think of it too much but Abraham watched the whole thing happened and we don't find any record of interaction Abraham a lot after you know he goes a little town it was or. And but Abraham was there we know Oprah is watching Saddam a destroyer and more being destroyed because of that dialogue that he had with the end of the day before the Lord the day before we know a broom was still around and how's heart must agree to see the fruits of the decisions that a lot it made and the suffering that it caused his family so here we have an example of Abraham being willing to take second choice always giving Let's look at another another example shall we. Another example is found in Genesis Chapter fourteen just the next chapter. Versus eight hundred twenty. No this is a story of the battle of the Keen's And you remember that there were these these four kings that came against the Kings of the valleys of Sodom and Gomorrah on the other cities of the valley and the four kings overcame the five kings and they took Sodom and Gomorrah captive now when when someone escaped they came in. Run came running and told Abraham verse twelve says they took lot Abrams brother's son who dwelt in Sodom and Gomorrah and and Saddam and his sons and departed and there came one that it escaped and told a broom the Hebrew fried wild in the plane of ma'am are the AM RIGHT brother mystical and brother anger at these were confederate with a broom and when a bomb heard that his brother was taken captive his nephew he armed is trained servants three hundred eighteen pursued and them unto Dan and here we have the story of how this takes place he divides and self up Abraham is not just a wise man a godly man and one who intentionally instructors for family and around the the family altar. He's not just a man who's always giving evidently sort of. He's sort of a tactical mind to you know I mean here he is he can't be that experienced in war I don't know I mean but somehow he has the he has the ability to plan an attack. Strategic attack you. Divides into companies and and times it and so forth. I suppose he figured that they would also be celebrating and drunk and who knows what else. Probably helped his case but his three hundred eighteen soldiers attack these four kings and they rout them pursue them and they completely completely completely overrun the the fleeing soldiers and the fleeing soldiers leave all the good that they've plundered out of the out of the cities of Valley and all these goods are now gathered up and notice what happens. Verse eighteen and milk is a decking of Salem brought forth bread and wine and he was a priest of the most high God he blessed him and said blessid be Abraham of the most high God possessor of or heaven and earth and blessed be the most high God which has delivered on hand enemies into that I hand and he gave him. Tithes of all so Abraham here says look I recognize that this is increase because that's what tied we pay tithes on injuries right. I recognize that this wealth that has come and our possession is from God as God Lessing us with this increase you pay tithes on it he gave it all I could imagine this was a rather significant amount of tides don't you think I mean this is the wealth of the cities the valleys you know this is this is the plunder of the Ottoman to morrow there's a lot of wealthy or I don't know what because it did with all that tied honestly we call that in an admin a sling which in the last ten years we've had a phrase that we've heard quite a bit well as a member of the executive committee the General Conference I've heard quite a bit is called extraordinary ties extraordinary tied what what's what's extraordinary. I the meantime is tied right ten percent of renters Well let me just tell you a couple of years ago not a couple years ago about two thousand and seven or so now I think there was a there was a family an agonised family who had worked very very hard and the father had started a sort of an assisted living center and and it had done well and so he had bought other property in another part of the country and it is done well and pretty soon he was buying and building in throughout all of Europe. Assisted living centers all over America. He became the largest or one of the largest privately owned assisted living. Organizations in the world now. Unfortunately this was back two thousand and seven somewhere around there he he developed cancer the father and and he he was given about six months to live well the family came together they have adult sons and children that were involved in running the business the family came together and the family said what what should we do with this company what should we do with the business and if they really decided that it was time to sell the father was going to be dying soon unless God intervened the sons really didn't want to continue running it the family didn't want to continue running it and by the way the real estate market was at its peak of us bubble. And they decided to to sell their family company and they had built it very carefully avoiding debt paying cash they had they had a their cut their employees love to work for them they're just down to earth. Treated people right. Honest fair just you know did business the way a Christian should do business and they were blessed and so they. Sold their company and they approached the church the conference in the area where they were at and they said what do we do we need to we want to pay tithes on the increase on the sale of this company and how do we go about doing that do we just put it in our local church. Do we do we just write the check to the conference. Because that's what often you know this happens but this was even so big that the concert it was just completely skew the and then all of the different you know because a certain percentage comes back to the conference or income that's the union and and it would just be and so the Congress said you know you really you really should go to the G. General Conference this is a global type of situation so so they went to the General Conference and they they talk in general conference they said you know we don't want to make you know what do you do with extra ties for a year to you don't just you can hire a pastor new pastor more pastors or whatever you what it's not going to be there next year you know so what do you do and so they they they agreed with the church leadership. Treasure and others the distraught ties would be set into a fund that would be used as ties should be used but it would be used as for special projects to especially advance the work of God around the world and it would be a divided up among the divisions it wouldn't just be something that their conference God would be divided Brown the world so they wrote a check is a personal check a small check it was like a business check it was a personal check. I've seen the chick. Like the treasure. Kept it on on how that worked I guess they don't need your checks anymore when you get a more a personal check and in the memo it's had ties to the check was for one hundred twenty million dollars. Can you imagine what some. On a bank tellers. Said when they saw the questions they had about tithes as a result of that but they were going to pay we're going to be faithful to the God who would bless them in that work that tie there's been an amazing work around the world it is incredible what has happened. All over India Africa there's we have well established media ministries going on in different languages new languages new work all kinds of things have been expanded because of the generosity of or the faithfulness I should say of that family. So here a brand he pays tithes it must have been extraordinary tide which he pays the Melkus addict and notice what happens after that and says in verse twenty verse twenty one the king of Saddam said and a broom. Give me the persons and take the goods to yourself I mean Abraham really I think Abraham it already by paying ties given evidence that that he rightfully could've consider these good to be as own goods right I mean he rightly could have kept them in fact it's almost like he did take possession of them long enough to pay tithes out of them you know what I'm saying. He said this is my increase of pay tithes but now that I've paid the tide notice what he says. Abraham said to the king of saw to burst Why do I lift up mine hand of the Lord the Most High God the possessor of heaven and earth that I will not take from a thread even to a shrew latch it and that I will not take anything that is yours. Lest you should say I have made Abraham rich. Save only that which the young men to be eaten in the portion of the men which went over to meet with me. That's the the other his his his he he had some. What is the call them confederates some of these others who are around him his neighbors let them take their portion but I will take nothing. Abraham did not want anyone to say that those wealth of Saddam that made him wealthy. He wanted people to know that it was God's blessing as he followed the principles of righteous living it was God's blessings and prospered him and so these others may take their portion. I'm not going to take anything I'm going to I'm going to I'm going to give it all back. Notice how he did take up for these other friends of his though you know he didn't he didn't require them to have the same thing the same selflessness that he had you know it's just it's just don't you start to admire Abraham he just seems to have this magnanimous mind that he's saying listen I'm not going to take anything I'm sure he could have used it for God's cause or something right but I'm not going to take anything about I'm not going to make other people have the same all truism that I have I'm not going require everyone else to give to the same degree that I am giving And while we're talking about these confederates of his that helped him with this battle let's just think about that for a minute. The Bible said there in verse thirteen he dwelt in the plain of ma'am are the AM RIGHT brother of Esko and brother Vainer and these were confetti with a broom so in other words he's up here where you know it's not where Lot shows where he chose up in the plains of of ma'am or and and here he is he's trying to stay safe and an plute from the world right. I mean isn't that always trying to do is trying to live a godly life that means he probably has nothing to do with his neighbors because they were they were heathens weren't they do you think that's what happened. I mean this is pretty amazing from just this little reference by the way right. These guys were willing to say you're going out. To fight them. Will go with you. Abraham had won the confidence of his neighbours I can just imagine Abraham would be over there fixing their fences and helping them with what they needed help with and oh you need it you know you're doing you're doing a special project. I'll send some workers over will come over hey let's let's have lunch together afterwards. Abraham was not one of these isolationist that's that I'm called to live a holy life I'm going to move out in the country and I'm not going to know anybody because I don't want to be polluted by the Babylonians Abraham was friends with people around him I mean just the lessons we can learn from the it's amazing to me. Abraham always giving always living not to see what he could get but to see what he could give Genesis Chapter eighteen now. Final story we look at this this quality of a broom. Genesis Chapter eighteen and will begin reading with Versed one the Lord appeared under him in the plains of mammary and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day and he lifted up his eyes and looked in Los Riemann stood by him and when he saw them he ran to meet them from the tent door about himself toward the ground now this is let's just let's just get the mental picture you know as a kid I don't know if the my Bible story or my Bible friends or lives write books or whatever if they had a painting of you know there were lots of illustrations and those I love the Bills ration Don't get me wrong but sometimes a little strange and sort of they fixed it in your mind and then you don't really use the your sanctified imagination and the medical data to Madge and what it might mean hike right one the reasons I have a hard time watching the local movies like I just don't want to do it because those things just get stuck in my mind is it that's how it happened and then when I read the Bible that's what I see instead of my imagined imagination sort of sort of focusing on and so what I've learned from a brand. Sense I've studied Abraham or I've come to the really. Nation Abraham was not just living in this little tent but I'm so forth with Sarah you known to go out his household was comprised of more than a thousand souls I mean it was a small city guide right I mean this was like this was a major I mean there are always people coming and going right you have always had people coming and going but what Abraham here Abraham sitting by his house it's a heat of the day and on that's not used when people are traveling I guess but here he sitting and and all the sudden a brand sees these three people now what you what it was like nobody ever came by. You understand there's thousand and more people will come out around that somehow Abraham knows them all and he knows a stranger when he sees one. Right and so Abraham gets up and he runs and he says to he runs to them and he says he went and bowed himself toward the ground now this is long after Abraham has become even more famous than famous you know I mean if he was well known before the war with the king's you've got to know he was well known after the war the king's right I mean everybody knew who Abraham was he had I mean I can't imagine there are very many people out there to sort of living in nomadic life that had over a thousand people they're awful against I just don't imagine that this was really really common I don't know but I'm sure he was well respected well loved I mean our By his own families we know people would come just because they want to learn from him do you think it might be possible if you ran a ministry with a thousand employees or whatever. Families hundreds and hundreds of families that work for you you think it might be possible that it might start to go to your head a little bit you know I'm saying I mean I've seen that happen even ministries I hate to say it but I've been her bald with a lot of different ministries and I've seen heads of ministry that really sort of get they don't have a time a day for units you have money and and it. Like Abraham the great man that he was the friend of God that he was the wealthy man that he was the respected famous man that he was in the whole region. Abraham goes down he doesn't even know who these three people are but he bounces off the ground that amazing I mean it just it just to me it's a it's mind boggling the way Abraham carries him so why because he's not thinking of self is always giving is not just talking about money or whatever. He's he's not thinking of himself he's thinking of others. He's he doesn't think of themselves as being too important to be humble and to entreat these strangers in and this is what he says he bows down toward the ground he said my lord. Again addressing them very respectfully if now I have found favor in your sight. Don't pass away I pray you from your servant let a little water I pray be fetched and wash your feet in arrest yourselves into the tree and I will fetch a morsel of bread and comfort your hearts and the you Michelle pass on for their for you have come to your servant and they said so do as I was said any I'll just get a little water and a little morsel of bread you know a snack will notice what he does. Abraham said to syrup make ready quickly three measures a fine meal need it make cakes on the hearth and ran into the herd and fetch the calf tender and good given the young man's in haste address it to better and milk in the cabinet made said I mean he made a regular I mean this was the royal treatment you know a special meal he gave for these visitors. Little morsel little water he was being humble wasn T. He sat there and set up before them and he stood by them under the tree and they did what I see here is a once again Abraham is always giving. He doesn't even know who these people are but he's going to give to them they could have been they could have been somebody off the street it didn't matter they. No Jesus said something similar. Denise Denise said he said when you invite someone don't just invite the people that can invite you back right. But invite the poor in the the homeless and Abraham I think as a as a as a perfect example for how we should live in the last days he doesn't say OK how much money do you have are you driving a nice enough car you wearing name brand clothes are you it doesn't seem to be that was his consideration just saw somebody and he said that's a new person I can only imagine this I can only imagine this is my Imagine I want to clarify is just my my imagination running rampant to running wild so take it or leave it with a grain of salt but I can only imagine that the Lord and the two angels that were within that day I can only imagine that they dressed in the garb of the locals don't you think I can only imagine they look like a local person and I'll just bet you this I'll just bet you that a broom when he saw these three people coming down the street he said I don't reckon as a speech to those are strangers. I want to witness to them. If he'd had a glow track he would have had one right next to that right next to that. Veel that he had prepared for them right. If he probably was preparing to tell them something about is gone. I can just imagine because that's the way Abraham lived his life he was always looking for an opportunity and when opportunities came to him he was going to take it I mean they came to his camp so he was going to witness to them and that's that's only how I imagine it but the Bible does tell us and Hebrews Chapter thirteen averse to Doesn't do not forget to entertain strangers for by so doing some have unwittingly entertain Angels and we believe this is particularly referring to this story here in Genesis Chapter eighteen where Abraham not only entertains angels but we find of the story goes on that. And what if I find fifty you know if you find fifty righteous we've saved Saddam and you find thirty him twenty ten and so forth. What what we find is that God himself was one of those Jesus himself angel the Lord was walking down that dusty path in front of Abraham's tent and Abraham because he was so anxious to give because he was so anxious to live to bless others because he is so anxious to share what God had given him with other people. Abraham became one of the few to fix in the for the Son of God I mean isn't that amazing. You think Abraham laughter word said Man I wish I just given that morsel I had some you know some rice cakes are some things I'm you know some crackers or something in the in the tent I could just give you think it is a man I'm glad I went all out because that those weren't just guys from the neighboring village. These were messengers from have what it was a wonderful privilege but you know we have the privilege to the Bible does say doesn't it. Than in as much as you have done it and to the least of these my brothers you've done it and to me you know sometimes we take for granted the influence that we can have in people's hearts and lives you know we live we tend to have friends in a similar socioeconomic strata. Right we send me so he seemed to be sort of you know there's nothing wrong with that by the way. But what Jane I have learned in Dolphin is that when you just spent some time maybe have some people over that are handicapped perhaps they're living on disability some of them may not be the cleanest they're not the most educated which you start to notice is even though. We live in a humble home that we bought as a fixer upper to get out of debt now. They think they have connections with some of the most important people in the world. I mean they value every word you say every minute they they can spend with you. It's amazing just and for us it's like it's nothing you know and not the we I hope we don't see the me different than other people but we just don't think of our influence being Duraid are. But it is it's sometimes they say things or do things and it just strikes you you realize to them this is really important this little bit of time this little gesture that that we sort of just not even thought about this is something that they'll think about for years and years to come and don't be forgetful to entertain strangers. We may not have the opportunity of Jesus walking by our street invite him in like a brand had but we can do so we can give him our best as we do so to the least of these. Accepted twenty and verse thirty five pulses I have showed you all things how that So labouring you ought to support the weak and remember the words of Jesus Christ how he said it is more blessid to give than to receive and it is more blessing to give without done to receive isn't it. We don't we never come up short handed when we give. I've learned and had Jane I've learned you can't out give God when you when you dedicate a portion of your income a generous portion of your income besides the ties when you give it. Generous offering. You're not going to go hungry. Like God always repeat always lessons and it's one of the reasons I think God wants us to live. Intentionally carefully with our allies with our finances and even to to try to try to avoid debt or get out of debt is difficult as it is and long road as it is for many times. Because once once you don't have those burdens. I'll tell you you can give as as as Dave Ramsey would say Evie live like nobody else you'll be able to live and give like nobody else looking forward to that experience. Amy Carmichael said you can give without loving but you cannot love without giving. So what we're talking here is about the heart I want to make that very clear I'm not talking about just wrote Lee mechanically we ought to give. I'm asking God to give me a heart that's not centered in me but centered another's a heart to says I want to give I want to love and when you love you're going to get if you can give without loving but you cannot love without giving Winston Churchill said we make a living by what we get we make a life by what we give and even though he wasn't the necessarily a godly man that I agree with everything he said I think there's a lot of wisdom in what he said Here we make a living by what we get we make a life by what we give all in with this passage from Luke six for verse thirty eight. Given it will be given to you. Good measure pressed down shaken together and running over we put into your bosom for the same measure that you use it will be measured back to you. Fallen Haven't we just want to ask that we would be like her spiritual father Abraham that we might not just be content to be selfish and. They Well I'm cry so I may brands even I make errors according the promise I want of the good things that I can get through being his spiritual descendant Lord help us to help us to do the deeds of Abraham to live a life of selflessness of giving living to give of loving and not thinking of ourselves. Oh lord you've demonstrated your character when you died upon Calvary's cross that you would so set self aside that you would give your very life so that's so that your enemies might have a choice of being saved so that we might be saved and I pray that you would just be a day by day. Instill in us the same character that we see on Calvary that she would make us more and more like you that you would help us to live together. Always give as Abraham seems to be praised this media was brought to you by audiotape 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 you would like to listen to more sermon leave Visit W W W. Audio first or.

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