WE NEED LAUGHTER

The average child laughs 400 times a day.

The average adult laughs 15 times a day.

What happens in life that makes adults lose their laughter?

Do we quit laughing because we are old, or do we get old because we quit laughing?

Inspiration says, “A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance, But by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.” (Pro. 15:13).

Tom Moore
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

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USING THE LAW

1 Timothy 1:8-11

INTRODUCTION
A. A major problem in the early church was a proper understanding of the law of Moses
1. Some Jewish Christians sought to bind it upon Gentile Christians… Acts 15:1-6
2. Some Jewish Christians continued to observe certain elements of the Law… Acts 21:20

B. The issue prompted several epistles from Paul
1. To the church at Rome
2. To the churches in Galatia
3. To the church at Colosse
4. To the Hebrew Christians in Palestine (if Paul be the author)

C. It was evidently a problem in the church at Ephesus…
1. Where Paul left Timothy… 1 Timothy 1:3-4
2. Where some strayed as in their use of the Law… 1 Timothy 1:5-7

D. A similar problem often exists today, where people…
1. Fail to understand the purpose and limitations of the Law of Moses
2. Use the Law of Moses in ways that are not lawful

E. But as Paul writes, the Law of Moses is good when used lawfully… 1 Timothy 1:8-11

F. From his words in this text and elsewhere, let’s examine first…

DISCUSSION
A. THE LAW OF MOSES USED LAWFULLY
1. The Law of Moses is used lawfully for wisdom regarding salvation through faith
a. As Paul wrote later in his second epistle to Timothy… 2 Timothy 3:14-17
1) Referring to the Scriptures Timothy knew from childhood
2) An obvious reference to the Old Testament, including the Law of Moses

b. Appeal was often made to the Old Testament in discussing the nature of salvation
1) As when Philip preached Christ to the eunuch… Acts 8:30-35
2) As when James spoke at the conference in Jerusalem… Acts 15:13-17
3) As when Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome… Romans 4:1-8

c. We can learn much about our salvation in Christ from the Law of Moses!

2. The Law of Moses is used lawfully for doctrine
a. There is much we can learn about God in the Old Testament
1) His omnipresence, omnipotence, omniscience – cf. Psalm 139
2) His longsuffering and mercy, His justice and righteous indignation – cf. Psalm 103
3) His providential workings in the affairs of nations and men – cf. Daniel 2,4,5

b. There is much we can learn about mankind
1) The origin and fall of man – cf. Genesis 1-3
2) The weakness of man and need for redemption… Psalm 51

c. We can learn much about God and our need for Christ from the Law of Moses!

3. The Law of Moses is used lawfully for reproof, correction, instruction in righteousness
a. The Law contains principles of righteousness that remain true throughout time
1) Condemning such sins as murder, fornication, homosexuality, kidnapping, lying, etc.
2) When admonishing Christians regarding basic principles of righteousness, the apostles often appealed to the Old Testament
a) Romans 12:19-21
b) 1 Peter 3:8-12
c) Hebrews 12:4-7

b. The Law reveals much about sin
1) The nature and spread of sin… Galatians 3:19
2) The condemnation of sin… Romans 3:19-20

c. We can learn much about sin and its terrible consequences from the Law of Moses!

4. The Law of Moses is used lawfully for learning and admonition…
a. As Paul in his epistles to churches in Rome and Corinth
1) Romans 15:4
2) 1 Corinthians 10:11-12
a) The Old Testament was written for our learning, that we might have hope
b) The Old Testament was written for our admonition, that we might not fall

b. God’s dealings with Israel serves as an example for the church today
1) As God’s elect, corporate Israel received the promises, but some individuals did not
2) As God’s elect, the church as a whole will be saved, but as individuals we must make our calling and election sure
a) 1 Peter 2:9-10
b) 2 Peter 1:10

c. From the Law we can learn much about the very real danger of apostasy! – e.g., Hebrews 3:8-4:1

5. Yes, “the law is good, if a man use it lawfully.”

6. What then would be some examples of the Law of Moses being used improperly?

B. THE LAW OF MOSES USED IMPROPERLY
1. The Law of Moses is used improperly for foolish arguments
a. What Paul described as “vain talking,” the result of ignorance… 1 Timothy 1:6-7

b. What he described as “foolish questionings, genealogies, strifes, and fightings about the law” (Tit. 3:9)

c. Have you noticed how often false teachers appeal to the Old Testament to broadcast their false doctrines?

2. The Law of Moses is used improperly for justification from sin
a. This was the error of the Judaizing teachers, who demanded that Gentile Christians must be circumcised and keep the Law of Moses… Acts 15:1, 5

b. It renders the death of Christ meaningless… Galatians 2:21

c. Seeking justification (salvation) by the Law separates one from Christ! … Galatians 5:4

3. The Law of Moses is used improperly for binding such things as its feasts and sabbaths
a. Paul evidently had no problem with Jewish Christians (including himself) observing various elements of the Law as a personal matter while the temple was still standing
1) Acts 16:1-3; 18:18, 21; 21:18-26
2) 1 Corinthians 9:19-20

b. But he drew the line when attempts were made to bind such on Gentile Christians
1) Galatians 2:3-5
2) Colossians 2:16

c. For the death of Christ broke down the Law which divided Jew and Gentile… Ephesians 2:14-16

d. Some have sought to bind various Jewish feast days, the Sabbath, dietary restrictions upon the church; this is an unlawful use of the Law of Moses!

4. The Law of Moses is used improperly for authority in worship
a. Some have appealed to the Law to justify various practices in their worship
1) For example, separate priesthood, special clothing, building of temples
2) For example, burning of incense, instrumental music, even animal sacrifices

b. Yet the New Covenant ushered in a more spiritual worship
1) As Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well… John 4:20-24
2) The worship under the Law of Moses:
a) Was “symbolic for the present time” … Hebrews 9:9
b) Contained “fleshly ordinances imposed until the time of reformation” … Hebrews 9:10

c. To appeal to the Law of Moses as authority for any practice in worship fails to recognize that the time of reformation has come!

CONCLUSION
A. As Paul wrote to the brethren at Rome… Romans 7:12

B. Even so, the Law had its limitations…
1. It was designed to be temporary, until the coming of Christ – Galatians 3:19, 23-25
2. It could not provide true redemption from sin… Hebrews 9:9; 10:1-4

C. Thus, the Law of Moses today is not designed to make one righteous (1 Tim. 1:9), for true justification and sanctification comes only through the work of Christ

D. Our understanding and application of the Law must be governed by and in harmony with the sound doctrine and gospel teachings of the apostles… 1 Timothy 1:10b-11

E. Appreciate the lawful use of the Law of Moses, and benefit thereby, while being careful of its unlawful use!

Tom Moore
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

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IT MAKES A DIFFERENCE

The story has been told, many times, how that at dawn an old man was walking along the beach. He noticed, at a distance, a young man throwing starfish into the ocean.

After a while the old man caught up the other and asked, “Why are you throwing the starfish back into the ocean?”

“Because they will die if they feel the midday sun.”

“But there are thousands of miles of beach and thousands of starfish. How can your puny efforts make any real difference?”

The young man stopped and looked at the starfish in his hand. After a moment, he threw it into the sea and said, “It makes a difference to this one.”

Friends there are millions needing the gospel – millions who need to hear the saving message (Mk. 16:15-16). There are hoards of people who need an encouraging word (Heb. 10:24-25), and many others needing our prayers lifted in their behalf (Phil. 1:4). Let us not be discouraged and give up due to the vast numbers. Try to make a difference in the life of someone each day. It will make difference to them.

Whose life will you make a difference in today!

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

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BENT TO THE GROUND

A city boy visited his cousin who lived on a farm in the country for the first time. The city boy had never seen wheat growing in a field. It was an impressive sight for him, the wheat golden brown and ready for harvesting. He noticed that some of the wheat stood tall in the field, whereas some of it was bent low, touching the ground. The city boy said to his cousin, “I bet the ones standing tall are the best ones, aren’t they?” His cousin smiled knowingly and reached over and plucked the head of one of the tall-standing wheat stalks and one that was bent to the ground. He rubbed each of them and the city boy saw that the tall one was almost empty of seeds. But the one bent to the ground was full of the promise of a rich harvest.

Christians are like this wheat ready for harvest. Those who stand tall in pride and arrogance have little to offer for the cause of Christ. But Christians who are bent over in humility are full of good needs and promise. There are too many Christian who throw their shoulder out of socket patting themselves on the back. Many are looking for the “high profile” job – wanting to be noticed. But, the truly faithful servant will serve even when no one is looking. The humble servant will not want to draw attention to himself but unto the Lord.

Jesus said, “Even so ye also, when ye shall have done all the things that are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which it was our duty to do” (Lk. 17:10), and “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Mt. 5:3). “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time” (1 Pt. 5:6).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

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THE PURPOSE OF THE COMMANDMENT

THE PURPOSE OF THE COMMANDMENT

1 Timothy 1:5

INTRODUCTION

The idea of “commandment-keeping” is not a popular one among many people today

  1. Some equate it with what they call “legalism”
  2. Others look at keeping any kind of commandment as an unpleasant task
  3. Perhaps a carry-over from childhood?
  4. Where they feel like they were constantly being “commanded” to do things?

Yet keeping the commandments of God should not be looked upon by Christians in this way…

  1. 1 Timothy 1:5
  2. What is the purpose or goal of any commandment from God?
  3. Is it only to enjoin blind obedience?
  4. Or is there a noble purpose behind the commands?

Our text, 1 Timothy 1:5, says there is a purpose, so let’s examine what Paul reveals about “The Purpose of the Commandment”

DISCUSSION

THE PURPOSE IS TO PRODUCE LOVE

Not for “disputes”

  1. Which is as far as some go with the Word of God!
    • They study it, discuss it, debate it, defend it
    • In Bible class, conversations, publications, etc.
  2. But, unless they obey it, all is in vain!
    • They fail to fulfill its ultimate purpose: to produce love!
    • Their religion is a vain religion, not a pure religion… James 1:22-27
  3. The purpose of all revelation and the test of all religion is character and conduct.

The goal of God’s commands is love

  1. Both love for God and love for man… Matthew 22:35-40
  2. Concerning our love for God
    • It begins with, but goes beyond adoration, praise and devotion
    • True love for God is realized when we keep His commands
      • 1 John 5:3
      • John 14:15, 21
  3. Concerning our love for man
    • It begins with, but goes beyond any active good will or affection we might have
    • True love for man is also realized when we keep God’s commands… 1 John 5:2

So the goal of any command of God is love. Not just any love, but a love that springs forth from a good source

FROM A PURE HEART, A GOOD CONSCIENCE, AND SINCERE FAITH

From a pure heart…

  1. Pure” can also be translated “clean,” suggesting that which is from impurities
  2. To love with such a heart requires purification, which comes obedience to the truth… 1 Peter 1:22-23
  3. Have our souls been purified by obeying the truth? If not…
    • We will be plagued by spiritual impurities (e.g., greed, covetousness, envy, pride)
    • We will be unable to love God and man as we should
  4. Those with ‘pure hearts’ are the ones who will be truly blessed… Matthew 5:8

From a good conscience

  1. Conscience” is defined as “that process of thought which distinguishes what it considers morally good or bad, commending the good, condemning the bad, and so prompting to do the former, and to avoid the latter.” – Vine
  2. The love God desires is that which comes from a person with a “good conscience
  3. To have a “good” conscience, it must be properly set
    • Like a clock, it is accurate only when properly set
    • Otherwise it might lead us astray
  4. To have a “good” conscience, it must be properly cleansed
    • For no matter who we are, we are sin
      • God says so… Romans 3:23
      • So does our conscience… Romans 2:14-15
      • Any who deny this have “rejected” or “seared” their conscience… 1 Timothy 1:19; 4:2
    • What can ‘cleanse’ our conscience?
      • Not any OT sacrifice or worship… Hebrews 9:9-10
      • Rather, the blood of Christ… Hebrews 9:14
  5. Only with a conscience “cleansed” from dead works can we really:
    • Love both God and man
    • Love with a pure heart and good conscience!

From a sincere faith

  1. Some translations use “unfeigned” instead of “sincere” (ASV, KJV)
  2. Notice how it is translated elsewhere… Romans 12:9 (without hypocrisy)
  3. The word “faith” involves two interrelated concepts:
    • A strong conviction in that which is believed
    • A strong trust in the object believed
  4. A “sincere faith” or “faith unfeigned” would be:
    • A true, honest to God, conviction
    • A true-hearted trust in God and Jesus
  5. This kind of faith comes only from the Word of God
    • Romans 10:17
    • John 20:30-31
  6. Without such faith, the love God desires is not possible!

CONCLUSION

What kind of religion do you have?

  1. One that consists in little more than religious talk?
  2. Or one that produces genuine love for God and man, manifested in deeds?

If you desire the religion that pleases God, it must be the kind that expresses itself in love:For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love” (Ga 5:6)

  1. Yet that kind of love comes “from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith”
  2. This is the goal of every command of God

Who dare says that keeping the commandments of God are not important?

Are you willing to let the commands of God create in you “love from a pure heart, from a good conscience and from sincere faith”?

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BUILD ME A SON

General Douglas MacArthur wrote…

“Build me a son, O Lord, who will be strong enough to know when he is weak, and brave enough to face himself when he is afraid; one who will be proud and unbending in honest defeat, and humble and gentle in victory.

“Build me a son whose wishbone will not be where his backbone should be; a son who will know Thee and that to know himself is the foundation stone of knowledge. Lead him, I pray, not in the path of ease and comfort, but under the stress and spur of difficulties and challenge. Here let him learn to stand up in the storm; here let him learn compassion for those who fail.

“Build me a son whose heart will be clean, whose goal will be high; a son who will master himself before he seeks to master other men; one who will learn to laugh, yet never forget how to weep; one who will reach into the future, yet never forget the past.

“And after all these things are his, add, I pray, enough of a sense of humor, so that he may always be serious, yet never take himself too seriously. Give him humility, so that he may always remember the simplicity of greatness, the open mind of true wisdom, the meekness of true strength.

“Then I, his father, will dare to whisper, I have not lived in vain.”

Paul said, “And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

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A BRIDGE TO SAFETY

In the aftermath of one of the most tragic ferry accidents in recent history, a story of heroism and selfless sacrifice is beginning to take shape. It’s the story of a young woman, Park Jee Young, just 22 years old.

Two years after the death of her father, Park dropped out of college to help support her family. She took a job with a ferry company, and was just recently promoted to serve on the ill-fated Korean ferry, the Sewol, which sank off the coast of South Korea last week (April 16, 2014).

The ferry was carrying 476 people, most of them high school students from the Danwon High School in Ansan City. The students were on a class trip to a nearby resort Island. After initial search and rescue attempts, more than 300 of the passengers are either dead or missing and presumed dead.

While nearly half of the ferry’s 22 crew members have been arrested in connection with negligence and dereliction of duty, Park gave her life to save as many passengers as possible. CNN reports:

By witness accounts [she] helped passengers escape and distributed life jackets — one after the other to students — as the stricken ferry began to sink. When she ran out of jackets, she ran to the next floor to grab more. When she was asked why she wasn’t wearing a life jacket, Park said that crew members would be last and that she had to help others first …

Even more amazingly, it was her quick thinking and assessment of the gravity of the situation which led so many to safety.

In an interview with CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield, survivors described the scene and her actions. They recounted how the severe listing of the ship nearly immediately turned walls into floors. Passengers were panicked and disoriented. A large, open door now created a gaping hole in the new “floor,” and it was too wide for passengers to safely step or jump over it. One crew member was laying on the floor nearby, grasping a mic and instructing passengers to stay put, and telling them they would be fine if they just stayed where they were.

Park instinctively knew that staying put was not an option. Witnesses say she grabbed some keys from her fellow crewman and forced the door shut, then locked it to be sure it stayed that way. She then led nearly 50 desperate passengers across it, creating, as one grateful survivor described it, a “bridge to safety.” She was standing right by the exit, he said, yet she refused to save herself, insisting that the needs of the passengers came first.

Alongside the flowers at her memorial is a simple message, “We will always remember your sacrifice.”
Spiritually speaking, Jesus is our “bridge to safety.” While the whole world was saying stay put and everything will be fine, He realized the gravity of the situation and took action. He knew that staying put in our separation from God was not an option, so He gave His life to close the gap between us and God. Like Park Jee Young, He put himself last in order to save as many as possible.
Just as Park Jee Young’s family “will always remember [her] sacrifice,” we are called to perpetually remember Jesus’ sacrifice each Lord’s Day as we gather at the Lord’s Table to observe communion.

“And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he brake it, and gave to them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

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