March 29, 2020
Rose of Sharon Baptist Church
March 29, 2020
Church Service Notes
Scripture: Galatians 4:4-7
This week we will finish our current series on the family. We have seen God’s creation of the family and its purpose to reveal the Lord and to teach future generations about the Lord. We have reviewed the Bible’s teachings on what marriage is intended to be and how marriages should be an example of God’s love for people. Last week we reviewed the roles of parents and children in the family. This week we will look at adoption as it relates to adoption.
There are multiple families in our church that have experience with adoption. My wife and I have adopted two of our three daughters. I want to encourage families to pray about if God would lead you to adopt children. There are many, many children in our state, nation, and world that need adoption. If God does not lead you to adopt then I would encourage you to consider ways you might support children in need of adoption whether it be fostering, child advocacy, voluntary, mentoring, and different donations. I will share from my own experience that adoption is not an easy road, but our family has been blessed tremendously through the children that have become a part of our family.
As we look at adoption I want to begin by describing the adoption process and I will share this process based on my own experience. Adoption begins with children needing parents. Children need parents for a variety of reasons. Some children’s parent die, some women become pregnant and decide they cannot be a parent so they give their children to others for adoption, in some cases authorities determine a child’s parent is not capable of providing for and ensuring the safety of a child, in some cases children are rejected by parents due to their gender, handicaps, and other reasons. If adoption did not exist children in these circumstances would find themselves helpless, abandoned alone in the world to fend for themselves. There are many great orphanages, fostering systems, and other agencies that step in to meet these children’s physical needs. However, children need a parent to provide security, emotional strength, guidance, and love.
Next in adoption is a willing parent. There has to be a parent willing to adopt children. Once a willing parent is present the potential parent has to be vetted and proved to be capable as a parent. Once a parent is vetted and approved then the parent must pay an adoption fee. After the fee is paid then the adoption process is completed with the signing of legal documents. This paperwork serves as the proof of the new parent-child relationship and legally documents the new family.
As we consider the adoption discussed in Galatians we can see real comparisons with the described adoption process. It begins with children needing adoption, and all people need spiritual adoption. All of us have been separated from our heavenly Father, the Lord. In a typical adoption something happens involving the parents. In our spiritual life, our own sins separate us for our Father and put us in a need for adoption. When we are separated from the Father by our sins it leaves us abandoned much like a child without their parents. We experience this with a void in our lives that we feel in our heart and soul. Throughout our lives we try to fill the void with many things and some of us convince ourselves we obtained all we need from life. But without a personal relationship with our heavenly Father we are alone spiritually. However, God the Father loves us too much to leave us in a state of separation, the Lord is our willing parent! There is a price to redeem us out of sin and to restore us into relationship with the Father, and that price is death. If we die apart from God we will pay that price eternally in hell. But again God loves us so much, God does not want that to occur. And so Jesus, God’s Son, is sent to be the payment for us. Jesus lived a perfect life without sin and then offered His life as the sacrificial payment necessary to redeem our lives. And Jesus is vetted, the Old Testament provides prophecies that describe who the Son of God would be, and Jesus fulfills those prophecies while no one else can. Furthermore, after dying and being buried, Jesus rose from the grave providing further proof that Jesus is God in the flesh.
The price has been fully paid by Jesus. But the spiritual adoption is differs from our previously described adoption in a key way. We must choose the adoption. In earthly adoptions the children do not really have a say as to who adopts them. In our spiritual adoption the Lord demonstrates His love, pays the price, and then invites us to join His family. We must decide to place our faith in Jesus as Lord and Savior to be complete the spiritual adoption. We must recognize our sin guilt separates us from the Lord and repent from sin to follow God – this is surrendering to God’s lordship. We must believe and confess that Jesus is the Savior, that Jesus is God, died on the cross, and rose again. By genuine faith we can be saved from being lost in sin apart from the Father and be saved into a new life in the family of God. The Bible tells us the Holy Spirit comes to live inside us when we make this decision by faith. The Holy Spirit marks us as saved and identifies us as being a part of God’s family just like our earthly adoptions have legal documentation.
Our passage in Galatians tells us we become heirs with Jesus. This means we are rescued from eternity in hell and promised eternal life. It also means we can experience life now with a renewed hope, we can have our void filled, we can live under the guidance of our heavenly Father!
I want to invite you today to consider accepting the Lord’s invitation to join His family. You can contact me or another Christian to discuss this further if you would like. Know that the Lord loves you and wants to save you.
Scripture: James 3:13-18
Tonight we continue looking at wisdom, and we will focus on verses 14-16. These verses describe the earthly, sensual, devilish wisdom. This type of wisdom breeds confusion, strife, envy, and evil works and also breeds arrogance and pride in those under its influence. We will look at different sources of this false wisdom. We will look at this sources to help us guard against their influence. As we consider what the Bible says about these false witnesses, we can learn to recognize them and resist them.
One source of false wisdom is the devil. Jesus called the devil the father of lies. In Revelation, the devil is described as the deceiver of the whole world. In 2 Corinthians 11:3, the deception of the devil is described as subtle and it is said that the devil works to pull us away from Jesus. We see this occurring in Genesis 3:1-5. In the fall in the garden, the devil comes as a serpent to Adam and Eve. He is described as approaching them in a subtle way. In conversing with Adam and Eve, the devil twists the words of God and denies the truth of what God has spoken. The devil promises to Adam and Eve that by eating of the fruit, they could achieve equality with God. Equality with God is one of the attractive temptations the devil presents. It is the temptation that led to his own fall. Many people desire to be superior and equality with God is an attractive thing to them, but it is impossible. We will never be equal with God, and anything saying we can is false. There are entire religious movements built around the false idea that we can achieve the status of God. These religious ideas promote works and acts of giving and different things to earn this god status, but the Bible teaches that God is higher than us and that we will never be God. So as we encounter temptations that suggest we could become like God, we must resist them. The way we resist is to flee the devil and to answer temptations with the truth of God’s Word. This requires us to be studied in God’s Word and to know it accurately. If we are not studying God’s Word, we can be easily twisted by the subtle words and easily led astray.
Another source of false wisdom is people. The New Testament Scriptures repeatedly warn to guard against false prophets and teachers. In Jude 4, we are told that false teachers will turn us away from God and push us toward feelings and away from the truth of Scripture. It tells us that false teachers will deny God, and they will deny that Jesus is God’s Son. We must learn to recognize any idea that is presenting Jesus as anything less that God as something to be rejected as false. In Colossians 2:8, we are warned against false teachers who promote traditions over Scripture. We must learn to vet people’s teachings to determine if they are emphasizing their own concepts and traditions to promote themselves and their ideas over the truth of Scripture. We must be wary of anyone who is adding to the Bible. In verse 18 of Colossians 2, we are warned against false teachers who suggests we should worship angels or other mystical concepts outside of the Word of God. Again, there are religious movements based upon traditions and mystical worship. These things need to be rejected as false teachings, as they are not grounded in the Bible.
A final source of false wisdom can be ourselves. In Jeremiah 17:9, we are told that the heart deceives. People are born with a sin nature, and we are not holy and righteous beings. There is corruption that exists in us so our feelings cannot be trusted as moral guideposts on their own. If we are honest, we can all think of a time when our heart has led us astray at some point in our lifetime. We know from experience that we cannot always trust our feelings. Yet many people are basing their life decisions on feelings rather than what Scripture teaches. If our feelings are leading us to value ourselves or an idea over God’s Word, we must reject our feelings and be obedient to God’s Word.
False wisdom leads to confusion, strife, and evil workings. None of us want to experience these things in our lives or our families. In order to guard against the negative consequences of false wisdom, we must learn to recognize false teachings and reject them. We must learn to always seek the Lord’s wisdom, study in His Word, and seek wisdom in prayer and in fellowship with other wise Christians.
In Christ’s Love,