January 19, 2020
Rose of Sharon Baptist Church January 19, 2020
Church Service Notes
Scripture: Galatians 6:7-10
Before we look into today’s Scripture I want us to review our previous messages in January. This month we started by introducing our church vision: that Rose of Sharon will run our race for God in a worthy manner so that when our race is complete we will hear will done my good and faithful church. Inspiration for our vision came from Hebrews 12:1-3. Then we considered the different parts of our race: worship, fellowship, discipleship, missions, and evangelism. We considered how are church is engaged in these different aspects of the race. In order to better engage in missions and evangelism we introduced action teams; our effort to reach out into our community and share the Lord’s love with people. This morning we will see an emphasis on mission work in Galatians.
Our Scripture tells us we are to be ready to do good to all people at every opportunity. It tells us we are to do missions!
Verse 7 begins by advising us to take the following commands seriously. God is not be mocked by hearing His Word without actually doing it or allowing it to transform us. We are to allow God’s Word to move within us and guide us through life.
Verse 7 then combines with verse 8 to tells us to sow spiritual things in our lives rather than things of the flesh. A farmer does not plant cotton seed when he wants to raise corn. If he wants corn, he will plant corn seed. The same is true in the things of the Spirit, the things of the Kingdom of God. If we desire to see these things grow in our lives, then we must sow such things. How do we sow? We sow with our time investments, where we spend/invest our money, where we use our resources, what we study, what we teach others, what we tell others; all these are ways we sow in our lives. Make no mistake, we are investing in something whether it is good spiritual things or meaningless things that will not impact eternity or sinful and evil things. I want us to consider some questions and what is important to us. Is the salvation of our family important? Is the salvation of our friends important? The salvation of people? The redemption of people from sin? The freedom from sin, shame, and guilt that is available in Christ? The transformation of people through Christ? If these things are important, are we sowing in them? 2 Corinthians 9:6 tells us that if we sow a little we will only reap a little and if we want to reap much then we must sow much. What and how much are we sowing?
Verse 9 gives us a promise that if we are faithful to sow and do the Lord’s work, in time we will reap. But we must not grow weary, faint, and quit. How do we not grow weary. In truth, doing the right thing can be demanding and difficult. How do not grow weary in unending work? God gives us the answers in His Word! Luke 18:1 tells us to pray so we will not faint. Matthew 4:4 Jesus speaks to the importance on feeding our souls with God’s Word. Hebrews 10:25 advises us to meet with other believers for encouragement. Isaiah 40:28-31 tells us to rely upon on wait on God to renew our strength. By God’ Word we must seek Him first in order to not grow weary.
Verse 10 concludes today’s passage. It tells us to do good to all and especially to fellow believers. Why do we do good, why do we do missions? I am reminded of Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 5:16. Our good works, our missions point other people to God the Father, they share God’s love with people, they open the door to share the Gospel unto salvation. Church we must engage in missions and evangelism.
Scripture: James 1:13-18
Last week in James we studied dealing with trials. Trials are those circumstance in life that come at us often with not control on our part. Trials are things we must experience and persevere through. Tonight we will look at the teaching on dealing with temptation. Temptations are not things we must experience as we do trials. Temptations can be avoided. It is important that we remember James 1:22 as we look at tonight’s Scripture, that we be doers of the word and not hearers only; we must apply what the Bible tells us about temptation.
Verse 13 declares to us that God does not tempt us. God only brings us good things and so He is not the source of temptation. God is in control of all things so He does allow temptation to occur. Why? If we consider the temptation of Job we can see that in temptation God gives us the opportunity to glorify Him by withstanding temptation. This is a means of testifying to others about the greatness of God in comparison to Satan as the case in Job. It’s also a way of testifying to other people that life includes a valid path along the narrow road following Jesus as opposed to wandering through the carnal. In resisting temptation and maintaining righteous living, we are an example to others. And this example will bring us opportunities to share the Gospel and God’s love with people. Resisting temptation is so important.
Verses 14 -15 outline the development of sin and the negative consequence of sin. Temptation starts with a desire. Desire itself is not always a bad thing, desire is often a good thing. When we become hungry we desire food, this causes us to eat and nourish our bodies all good things. Desires are however often accompanied by temptations. Temptations are avenues to satisfy our desires outside the will of God. For instance, we may be tempted to steal food to eat. The temptation to steal is a sinful way of satisfying our desire. The verses discuss the rise of the desire, the conception of the sinful means to satisfy the desire, then the sin, and then the consequence – death. It’s important we understand how temptation works. Temptation does not come from God but rather from the devil and the workers of iniquity. The temptation attracts us into taking something by sin. It is very similar to fishing: the fisherman offers an attractive bait to a fish. The fish consumes the bait but it does not know that inside the bait is a hook leading to its capture. And so it is with temptation. The temptation matches our desire with an attractive bait that we must sin to obtain. Once we commit to sin we are exposed to the evil hook and the resulting consequence. And sin does bring consequence. We may not experience the consequence immediately, we may not think the consequence is even all that unbearable. However, sin has grave consequences. Even the littlest sin separates us from God, it makes us imperfect and condemns to eternal hell unless we receive salvation through Jesus Christ. Even as Christians, sin has dire consequences. It can bring sickness, physical suffering, financial loss, loss of friendship, loss of reputation, and even death. And this one way we are to deal with sin, if we realize that following sin is negative consequences, this truth should act as a deterrent to sin. By not sinning, we won’t suffer the negative consequences of sin.
I can’t help but think of King David. King David saw Bathsheba bathing and desired her. He is tempted to enter an illicit affair with her. We know the rest of the story, David succumbs to temptation which leads to a pregnancy, which leads to a ruse attempting to deceive a just husband, the murder of the just man, and then family suffering for David’s future. If David had known all that awaited the temptation would he have followed through with the sin? I like to think he would have known the cost was not worth it. What about us? We must learn to recognize temptations that we fall for result in costly consequences for us.
James gives another reason beyond negative consequences to avoid sin in verses 16-17. Now James reminds us of the wonderful good things God has given us because His love for us. The love God shares with us is constant and has nothing but good for us. When we are loved and we acknowledge the love, we cannot help but love back. We should remember God’s love for us when tempted and show our own love for God by obeying Him and not committing the sin. Love involves trust. If love the Lord we must also trust the Lord and remain faithful and obedient to Him. Love should keep us from falling into temptation and committing sin.
Again I think of David. In 2 Samuel 12:7-8 the prophet Nathan confronts David about his sin. As he does so he reminds David that God had made David king, protected him from Saul, given David the kingdom’s wealth, given David wives. And had that not been enough for David, then God could have given so much more. In spite of God’s great love for David, David ignored all he had been given, and became envious. David should have been content with God’s great gifts and God’s love. So should we! We need to learn to rest in God and find contentment in all He has given us rather than dwell on temptations.
Tonight’s passage ends in verse 18 with a third truth to consider in the avoidance of temptation. By God’s grace and power we are capable of resisting temptation. Many of us excuse sin in our lives blaming our humanity as a reason to allow us sins. We claim there are some sins that are just weak spots for us. But when we become Christians we are gifted with the Holy Spirit indwelling us. With the Holy Spirit living in us we have the power of God to resist temptations. We are new creations in the Lord. We must accept this truth and accept that are capable of resisting sin. The Bible tells us that God will not allow us to be tempting beyond what we can bare and when we are tempted God will provide an escape for us. We need to believe we are capable of resisting sin.
James teaches us how to avoid sin, consider the negative consequences, love the Lord and obey Him, and rely on the power of the Holy Spirit to resist the temptations.
If we can be of help in some way to you, please let us know.
In Christ’s Love, Charlie Tucker