Call to Worship for July 21st, 2019

Tags

, ,

pexels-photo-248199.jpeg

For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.
Psalms 61:3

 

Click here to see what is planned for this Sunday including message text, songs for each service, special music, and scriptures associated with our songs!

 

Our special song this week is All Your Anxiety.

 

Praise ye the LORD. I will praise the LORD with my whole heart, in the assembly of the upright, and in the congregation.  Psalms 111:1

 Call to Worship is a weekly post to help prepare our hearts for corporate worship in our Sunday morning service. 

 

James 4:13-16, Avoiding God’s Will

Tags

, , , ,

Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that. But now ye rejoice in your boastings: all such rejoicing is evil.

Avoiding God’s Will

James addresses those here who are in business and might discuss their business plans around the church. Based off of James’ writing there is no evidence that they sought the will of God or prayed about these decisions. They measured success in life by worldly gain and successful plans. James wasn’t condemning their business planning, he was concerned because they left God out of it. They may or may not have been in the Will of God, but it is evident that this was not their concern. They were more concerned with life’s affairs than with God’s.

Instead of obeying God’s will or just flat out disobeying it, these folks were just avoiding it. James shows clearly why it is unwise to avoid God’s will:

Life is complex

Think of all that is involved in life: today, tomorrow, buying, selling, getting gain, losing, going here, going there. Life is full of people and places, activities, and goals, days and years. We all make critical decisions every day.  Apart from the will of God, life is a mystery. With Jesus life starts to make sense. The world around you takes on new meaning. You are no longer living in a mysterious, threatening universe. Life is too complex to avoid God’s will.

Life is Uncertain

Proverbs 27:1 “Boast not thyself of tomorrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.”

See how confident they were:

  • “We will go.”
  • “We will continue there a year.”
  • “We will buy and sell and get gain.”

It’s great to make plans, but remember life is uncertain especially outside the will of God. Remember the farmer in the gospels?  He had a great crop one year. He built bigger barns confident in his increase. God said, “Thou fool…tonight thy life will be required of thee.”

Life is not uncertain to God, but it is uncertain to us. Only in His will should we be confident of tomorrow, only there do we know that He is leading us. Life is too uncertain to avoid God’s will.

Life is Brief

Life seems long, but in comparison to eternity, it is just a vapor. Since life is so brief, we cannot afford merely to “spend our lives”. We certainly don’t want to “waste our lives.” We should invest our lives in things eternal.

Time is filled with swift transition,
Naught of earth unmoved can stand,
Build your hopes on things eternal,
Hold to God’s unchanging hand.

Refrain:
Hold to God’s unchanging hand,
Hold to God’s unchanging hand;
Build your hopes on things eternal,
Hold to God’s unchanging hand.

Trust in Him who will not leave you,
Whatsoever years may bring,
If by earthly friends forsaken
Still more closely to Him cling.

Covet not this world’s vain riches
That so rapidly decay,
Seek to gain the heav’nly treasures,
They will never pass away.

Life is too brief to avoid God’s will.

James gives one other warning in this area.

“ye rejoice in your boastings…all such rejoicing is evil…”

James says to those avoiding the will of God:

    • Life is too short to avoid God’s will.
    • Life is too uncertain to avoid God’s will.
    • Life is too complex to avoid God’s will.

Then he concludes this with the warning that if you are still going to avoid God’s will, at least don’t brag about it!

Pastor Chance Strickland

Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN

http://www.harpethbaptist.org

1 Peter 5:5-7, Pride vs. Humility (Part 1)

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble. Humble yourself under the mighty hand of God. Casting all your care upon Him!

1 Peter 5:5-7, Pride vs. Humility

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

Call to Worship for July 14th, 2019

Tags

, ,

pexels-photo-248199.jpeg

Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Matthew 6:30

Click here to see what is planned for this Sunday including message text, songs for each service, special music, and scriptures associated with our songs!

 

Our special song this week is He Will Hold Me Fast.

 

Praise ye the LORD. I will praise the LORD with my whole heart, in the assembly of the upright, and in the congregation.  Psalms 111:1

 Call to Worship is a weekly post to help prepare our hearts for corporate worship in our Sunday morning service. 

 

Jonah — The Secret

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , ,

Summer Bible Conference — Don Savell | Sermon #5 | 7:00 pm | Tuesday July 9, 2019

In this fifth sermon through the book of Jonah, Don Savell speaks of the secret to the revival in Ninevah. Listen to sermon 5 in the series, The revival in Ninevah, titled: The Secret.

Jonah – The Secret

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

Jonah — The Schedule

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , ,

Summer Bible Conference — Don Savell | Sermon #4 | 7:00 pm | Monday July 8, 2019

In this fourth sermon through the book of Jonah, Don Savell speaks of the schedule attached to the revival in Ninevah. Listen to sermon 4 in the series, The revival in Ninevah, titled: The Schedule.

Jonah – The Schedule

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

James 4:1-12, WAR

Tags

, , , ,

From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts. Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy? But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up. Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge. There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?

At War with Each Other

What causes fights among Christians?

“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity” (Ps. 133:1).

We should live together in love and harmony. But, sometimes we don’t.

  • Lot caused a quarrel with Abraham (Gen. 13).
  • Absalom created a war for his father David (2 Sam. 13–18).
  • The disciples created problems for Jesus when they argued over who was the greatest in the kingdom (Luke 9).

The early churches had their share of disagreements.

  • The members of the Corinthian church were competing with each other in the public meetings, and even suing each other in court (1 Cor. 6:1–8; 14:23–40).
  • The Galatian believers were “biting and devouring” one another (Gal. 5:15).
  • Paul told the Ephesians to have unity (Eph. 4:1–16);
  • The church at Philippi had two women who couldn’t get along with each other (Phil. 4:1–3).

James gives different kinds of disagreements within the church.

  • Respect of persons (James 2)
  • Employment wars (James 5)
  • Church fights over leadership positions(Chap 1 & 3).
  • Personal wars (4:11–12).

The saints were speaking evil of one another and judging one another. Here, again, we see the wrong use of the tongue. Christians are to speak “the truth in love” (Eph. 4:15); We are not to speak evil in a spirit of criticism.

It is a sad thing when the saints are at war with each other. Leader against leader, church against church, fellowship against fellowship. The world watches these religious wars. They see the church fight and use this to withstand Christ. Jesus prayed, “That they all may be one; as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us; that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me” (Jn 17:21).

But, why were they at war with one another? They belonged to the same family; They trust the same Savior; They were indwelt by the same Holy Spirit—and yet fought one another. Why? James answers this question by explaining the second war that is going on.

At War with Ourselves

What causes fights among Christians? Don’t they come from your lusts that war within you? The war in the heart causes the wars in the church!

One of the bases of sin is selfishness.

  • Eve disobeyed God because she wanted to eat of the tree and become wise like God.
  • Abraham lied about his wife because he selfishly wanted to save his own life (Gen. 12:10–20).
  • Achan caused defeat to Israel because he selfishly took some forbidden loot from the ruins of Jericho (Josh. 7).
  • “We have turned every one to his own way” (Isa. 53:6).

Religious quarrels are hidden with the disguise of “spirituality.”

  • Miriam and Aaron complained about Moses’ wife but really were envious of Moses’ authority (Num. 12).
  • James and John asked for special thrones in the kingdom, when really they wanted recognition then (Mark 10:35–45).

Selfish desires are dangerous things.

  • They lead to wrong actions (“ye kill, fight and war,”v.2)
  • They lead to wrong praying (“ask and receive not” v.3).

“When our praying is wrong, our whole life is wrong.” The purpose of prayer is not to get man’s will done in heaven, but to get God’s will done on earth. “Thou shalt not covet” is the last of the 10 Commandments. Its violation can make us break all of the other nine! Covetousness can make a person murder, tell lies, dishonor parents, commit adultery, and in one way or another violate all of God’s moral law.

Selfish living and selfish praying always lead to war. If there is a war on the inside, there will be a war on the outside. People who are at war with themselves because of selfish desires are always unhappy people. They never enjoy life. Instead of being thankful for the blessings they do have, they complain about the blessings they do not have. They cannot get along with other people because they are always envying others for what they have and do. They are always looking for that “magic something” that will change their lives when the real problem is within their own hearts. Many wars would be solved if we would only look into our own hearts and see the battles raging there.

At War with God

The root cause of every war, internal/external, is rebellion against God. At the beginning of Creation there is perfect harmony; but sin came into the world, which led to conflict. Sin is lawlessness and lawlessness is rebellion against God. A believer declares war against God by being friendly with God’s enemies. James names three enemies that we must not friend if we want to be at peace with God.

The world

Abraham was the friend of God (James 2:23); Lot was the friend of the world. Lot ended up in a war, Abraham had to rescue him. We get involved with the world gradually.

  • First, there is “the friendship of the world” (Js 4:4).
  • This leads to being “spotted” by the world (Js 1:27).

Now areas of our lives meet the approval of the world.

  • Friendship leads to loving the world (1 John 2:15–17).
  • This makes it easy to conform to the world (Rm 12:2).
  • The end is being condemned with the world (1 Cor. 11:32), our souls saved “yet as by fire”. The world is the enemy of God, and a friend of the world cannot be the friend of God. Neither can we befriend flesh, the next enemy in James.

The flesh 

The flesh refers to our old nature. When a sinner yields to Christ, he receives a new nature within, but the old nature is neither removed nor reformed. This leaves a battle within.

James says “your lusts that war in your members.” Living for the flesh means grieving the Holy Spirit of God who lives in us. Just as the world is the enemy of God the Father, so the flesh is the enemy of God the Holy Spirit. The Spirit within jealously guards our relationship to God, and the Spirit is grieved when we sin against God’s love.

Living to please the old nature is declaring war on God. To allow the flesh to control the mind is to lose the blessing of fellowship with God.

  • Abraham had a spiritual mind; he walked with God and enjoyed peace.
  • Lot had a carnal mind; he disobeyed God and experienced war.

The devil 

The world is in conflict with the Father; the flesh fights against the Holy Spirit; the devil opposes the Son of God. Pride is Satan’s great sin, and it is one of his chief weapons in his warfare. God wants us to be humble; Satan wants us to be proud. “Ye shall be as God,” Satan promised Eve, and she believed him. God wants us to depend on His grace (“But He giveth more grace”). The devil wants us to depend on ourselves.

Here, James gives three enemies that want to turn us away from God: the world, the flesh, and the devil. Christ has delivered us from them, but they still attack us. We can overcome them, James gives us instructions to follow if we would enjoy peace instead of war:

Submit to God

This is a military term for “get in your proper rank.” When a private acts like the general, there is trouble! Surrender is the only way to complete victory. If there is any area of life kept back from God, there will always be battles.

Resist the Devil

He flees like a bully.

Draw nigh to God

We do this by confessing our sins. “Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double-minded.” God draws near to us when we deal with the sin in our lives that keep Him at a distance. He will not share us with anyone else; Abraham “drew near” and talked to God about Sodom, Lot moved into Sodom and lost the blessing of God.

Humble yourselves before God

It is possible to submit outwardly and yet not be humbled inwardly. We have a tendency to treat sin too lightly, even to laugh about it. “Sin is serious, a one mark of humility is facing sin and dealing with our disobedience.”

Pastor Chance Strickland

Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN

http://www.harpethbaptist.org

Jonah — The Sin of Ninevah

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , ,

Summer Bible Conference — Don Savell | Sermon #3 | 6:00 pm | Sunday July 7, 2019

In this third sermon through the book of Jonah, Don Savell speaks of the wickedness of Ninevah coming before God. This is helpful in understanding our own sin and God’s dealing with it. Listen to sermon 3 in the series, The revival in Ninevah, titled: The Sin of Ninevah.

Jonah – The Sin of Ninevah

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

Jonah — The Significance of Ninevah

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , ,

Summer Bible Conference — Don Savell | Sermon #2 | 11:00 am | Sunday July 7, 2019

In this second sermon through the book of Jonah, Don Savell speaks of how Ninevah was a great city, gentile city, and godless city. Listen to sermon 2 in the series, The revival in Ninevah, titled: The Significance of Ninevah.

Jonah –The Significance of Ninevah

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

Jonah — Behold Your God

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , ,

Summer Bible Conference — Don Savell | Sermon #1 | 8:30 am | Sunday July 7, 2019

In this first sermon through the book of Jonah, Don Savell brings the focus away from the great fish and Jonah, to properly place it upon God. Listen to sermon 1 in the series, The revival in Ninevah, titled: Behold your God.

Jonah – Behold your God

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

Call to Worship for July 7th, 2019

Tags

, ,

pexels-photo-248199.jpeg

Praise ye the LORD. Praise ye the LORD from the heavens: praise him in the heights.

Psalms 148:1

Click here to see what is planned for this Sunday including message text, songs for each service, special music, and scriptures associated with our songs!

 

Our special song this week is Speak, O Lord.

 

Praise ye the LORD. I will praise the LORD with my whole heart, in the assembly of the upright, and in the congregation.  Psalms 111:1

 Call to Worship is a weekly post to help prepare our hearts for corporate worship in our Sunday morning service. 

 

James 3:17-18, Heavenly Wisdom

Tags

, , , ,

But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.

Heavenly Wisdom

The Origin

True or Heavenly wisdom comes from above. Heavenly or not “man-made” wisdom comes from God. Heavenly Wisdom is the only wisdom that brings lasting success.

Proverbs 9:10 “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: And the knowledge of the holy is understanding.”

This wisdom from above is in sharp contrast to that which is earthly, sensual, and devilish. What is the Christian’s wisdom? Jesus Christ is our wisdom. (1 Cor. 1:24, 30).

Colossians 2:3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

The first step toward true wisdom is the receiving of Jesus Christ as Saviour. The Word of God is also our wisdom. “Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments… Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations” (Deut. 4:5–6).

The Scriptures are able to make us “wise unto salvation” (2 Tim. 3:15). We find wisdom through believing prayer. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God.” The Holy Spirit of God is “the Spirit of wisdom and revelation” (Eph. 1:17) and He directs us in the wisest paths as we trust the Word and pray. This is the origin of Heavenly Wisdom. The origin of true wisdom is God. There is no need to get the wisdom of the world, the wisdom that caters to the flesh and accomplishes the work of the devil. Get wisdom from God!

The Operation

Heavenly wisdom, operates in a different way from the wisdom that is “earthly, sensual, devilish.” They originate from radically different sources. They operate in opposite ways.

Meekness

Meekness is not weakness; it is power under control. The meek person does not selfishly assert himself. The Greek word was used for a horse that had been broken so that his power was under control. The meek person seeks only the glory of God and does not cater to the praises of men. Meekness is a fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:23); it cannot be manufactured by man. Meekness is the right use of power. Wisdom is the right use of knowledge.

Pure 

“First pure” indicates the importance of holiness. God is holy; therefore the wisdom from above is pure. The idea behind this word is “chaste, free from defilement.” Heavenly wisdom leads to purity of life.

Peaceable

Earthly wisdom leads to competition, rivalry, and war. Heavenly wisdom leads to peace. It is a peace based on holiness, not on compromise. If the church is pure, devoted to God, then there will be peace. Earthly wisdom says, “Cover up sin! Keep things together!” Heavenly wisdom says, “Confess sin and My peace will keep things together!”

Gentle

Gentle (gentleness) carries the meaning of moderation without compromise, gentleness without weakness. The gentle person does not deliberately cause fights, but neither does he compromise the truth in order to keep peace. Carl Sandburg described Abraham Lincoln as a man of “velvet steel.” That is a good description of gentleness.

Easy to be intreated

Compliant – heavenly wisdom makes the believer agreeable and easy to live with and work with.  Earthly wisdom makes a person hard and stubborn. The compliant person is willing to hear all sides of a question, but he does not compromise his own stance.  He can disagree without being disagreeable. “swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath”(1:19).

Stubbornness is not conviction. In fact, one who is so stubborn as to not hear all sides is usually not set in their own stance. When God’s wisdom is at work, there is a willingness to listen, think, pray, and obey whatever God reveals.

Full of Mercy

To be “full” of something is to be “controlled by.” The person who follows God’s wisdom is controlled by mercy. “Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful” (Luke 6:36). God in His grace gives us what we do not deserve, and in His mercy, He does not give us what we do deserve. Our Lord’s Parable of the Good Samaritan illustrates the meaning of mercy (Luke 10:25–37). For a Samaritan to care for a Jewish stranger was an act of mercy. He could gain nothing from it, except the blessing that comes from doing the will of God; and the victim could not pay him back. That is mercy.

Good fruits 

People who are faithful are fruitful. Heavenly wisdom does not make a life empty; it makes it full. The Spirit produces fruit to the glory of God. The lawyer in Luke 10 was willing to discuss the subject of neighborliness, but he was unwilling to be a neighbor and help someone else. God’s wisdom is practical; it changes the life and produces good works to the glory of God.

Without partiality

With earthly wisdom, you are pressured from one side and then another to change your mind or take a new viewpoint. With heavenly wisdom, you need not waver; you can be decisive and not be afraid. Wisdom from above brings strength from above.

Without hypocrisy 

The Greek word translated hypocrite in our New Testament means “one who wears a mask, an actor.” When man’s wisdom is at work, there may be insincerity and pretense. When God’s wisdom is at work, there is openness and honesty, “speaking the truth in love” (Eph. 4:15). Wherever you find God’s people pretending and hiding, you can be sure the wisdom of this world is governing their ministry. “Politics in Religion” is an abomination to God. “Faith is living without scheming.” This is the operation of heavenly wisdom, much the opposite of earthly.

The Outcome

James returned to the word, fruit. There is a vast difference between man-made results and God-given fruit. Fruit is the product of life, and fruit has in it the seeds for more fruit. Usually, it is the seed that is sown, but here it is the fruit that is sown. As we share the fruit of God with others, they are fed and satisfied, and they in turn bear fruit. The Christian life is a life of sowing and reaping.

For that matter, every life is a life of sowing and reaping, and we reap just what we sow. The Christian who obeys God’s wisdom sows righteousness, not sin; he sows peace, not war. The life we live enables the Lord to bring righteousness and peace into the lives of others. The outcome of the operation in heavenly wisdom is fruit!

Pastor Chance Strickland

Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN

http://www.harpethbaptist.org

Summer Bible Conference 2019

Tags

, , ,

Summer Bible Conference schedule:

Sunday (July 7) 8:30, 11am, & 6pm / Monday-Wednesday (July 8-10) 7pm

About the Speaker: Don Savell 

The Savells reside in their home state of Mississippi, where through the years, Don Savell has served as pastor of several churches. These include Center Ridge BC of Chunky, Pleasant Ridge BC of Forest, New Zion BC of Walnut Grove, First Baptist Church of Orange Grove, and Arlington BC of Philadelphia, where he served for almost twenty years.

The time span between pastoring and evangelism has been almost equally divided, although he continued to travel and hold many revivals in the years of the pastorate.

Today, Don and Sue Savell reside in Union, Mississippi and are sent out by Salem Baptist Church in Lake, Mississippi where Bro. Larry Duncan is the pastor. Bro. Savell’s ministry of the Word of God is one of exposition, evangelism, and encouragement to those congregations where he is invited to serve. It is their mission to offer hope for the lost and help for the saved as they carry the Word of God into forty-five churches each and every year.

Call to Worship for June 30th, 2019

Tags

, ,

pexels-photo-248199.jpeg

O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together.
Psalm 34:3

Click here to see what is planned for this Sunday including message text, songs for each service, special music, and scriptures associated with our songs!

 

Our special song this week is The Lord Is My Salvation.

 

Praise ye the LORD. I will praise the LORD with my whole heart, in the assembly of the upright, and in the congregation.  Psalms 111:1

 Call to Worship is a weekly post to help prepare our hearts for corporate worship in our Sunday morning service. 

 

James 3:13-16, Earthly Wisdom

Tags

, , , ,

Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.

Power to Destroy: Fire and Poison

The Origin

Earthly wisdom is man-made. Man-made wisdom may seem successful for a time but is destined to fail since it doesn’t come from God. In Genesis 11 the building of the tower of Babel seemed to be a great success for man’s wisdom, but it ended in failure and confusion. In Genesis 12 it seemed wise for Abraham to go to Egypt during a famine, but the results were disastrous.

In 1 Samuel King Saul thought it wise to lend his armor to protect David against Goliath, but God had other plans. In the Gospels the Disciples’ wisdom thought it best to dismiss the crowd to allow them to find food, Jesus fed them all with just a little. In Acts, earthly wisdom saw it best to try and sail for Rome in spite of heavenly warnings which ended in shipwreck.

The problem with Earthly wisdom is its origin–Sin cursed man.

Earthly wisdom’s origin?

Ephesians 2 teaches that the Christian has 3 enemies: The World – Earthly, The Flesh – Sensual, and The Devil – Devilish. This is the origin of Earthly Wisdom. We should be careful to not confuse knowledge & wisdom. The World has much knowledge and we all benefit from it. But as for Wisdom, there is very little “Earthly”. Earthly Wisdom that man discovers, he knows little about what to do with it.

Henry David Thoreau warned that we had “improved means to unimproved ends.” It is almost as if the entire goal of acquiring Earthly wisdom is to eliminate a need for God. I am very encouraged anytime I meet someone who is discovering more and more Earthly Wisdom and/or Knowledge for the end of using it to God’s glory.

The Operation

What are the evidences of false wisdom?

  • Bitter envying

Discontented or resentful longing. Envy produces selfish ambition & zeal.  This ties in with James 3:1. The wisdom of the world says: “Promote yourself. You’re as good as the others, maybe better!” “The squeaky wheel gets the grease.” Sad to say, there is a great deal of selfish, carnal promotion among God’s people. Even the Apostles argued over who was the greatest.

Today’s society has disguised the sin here by adding, “for the glory of God” to the end of it. I may have selfish ambition, but in the end, it is for the glory of God. This is wrong.  This is a sin. This is the operation of Earthly Wisdom. We should be zealous in the things of God, but we must be sure that our motives are right. Do we rejoice when others succeed, or do we have secret envy and criticism? Do we feel burdened when others fail, or are we glad?

  • Strife in your hearts 

Angry or bitter disagreement. This word means “party spirit,” as in “political party.” It was used by the Greeks to describe a politician out canvassing for votes. The world’s wisdom says, “Get all the support you can!” Ask people if they are for you or against you! This creates rivalry and division in the church.

“Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than [more important than] themselves” (Phil. 2:3).

  • Glory not 

Boasting–Pride loves to boast, and nothing is prouder than earthly wisdom. When heavenly wisdom is at work, there is a sense of humility and submission, and God gets all the glory. There is no desire to compare with any other Christian, only Christ, and compared with Him, all of us have a long way to go!

  • Lie not 

Deceit– “Lie not against the truth.” Notice a pattern? The pattern is not difficult to understand. First, there is a selfish ambition that leads to party spirit and rivalry. In order to “win the election” we must resort to boasting, and boasting usually involves lies! A man’s life is not read in his press releases; it is read by the Lord in his heart.

The Outcome

Earthly wisdom produces trouble

Envy, strife, confusion, evil work. It does not appear that God was at work in that assembly. Wrong thinking produces wrong living. One reason the world is in such a mess is because men have refused to accept the wisdom of God. The word translated “confusion” means “disorder that comes from instability.” It is related to “unstable” in James 1:8 and “unruly” in James 3:8. Jesus used this word to describe the convulsions of the world in the last days. Luke 21:9 “But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by.”

Conclusion:

The most important thing we can do in our local churches is to measure our ministries by the Word of God, not by the wisdom of men. The many battles among Christians, the church splits, the absence of purity and peace, all suggest that something is wrong. Perhaps that “something” is the absence of the wisdom of God.

Pastor Chance Strickland

Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN

http://www.harpethbaptist.org

1 Peter 5:1-4, Elders

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

What is a biblical elder? An Elder cannot effectively lead you if the Holy Spirit is not living in you. If you are unsaved, this is your first step into the church. No matter your role in the church, we can all use the exhortation here to better our daily Christian walk. Don’t quit when times get tough.

1 Peter 5:1-4, Elders

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

James 3:5-12, Power to Destroy: Fire and Poison

Tags

, , , ,

Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell. For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind: But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.

Power to Destroy: Fire and Poison

“How great a matter a little fire kindleth…”

Illustrations:

  • It is said that during one night in London in World War II, the bombs hit and the fires destroyed at least a million books!”
  • In just a few days a wildfire can burn thousands of acres, all from just a little spark.
  • A fire reportedly started in the O’Leary barn in Chicago at 8:30 p.m., October 8, 1871; and because that fire spread, over 100,000 people were left homeless, 17,500 buildings were destroyed, and 300 people died. It cost the city over $400 mil.

“The tongue is a fire…set on fire of hell.”

Our words start fires. Proverbs 26:20 “Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: So where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.” Proverbs 26:21 “As coals are to burning coals, and wood to fire; So is a contentious man to kindle strife.” When church members and especially leaders can’t control their tongues, the result is destruction. This is exactly what the devil and hell would want.

Whatever happened to dignity? “For every word in Hitler’s book, Mein Kampf, 125 lives were lost in World War II.” Colossians 4:6 states, “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.”

The tongue is also like a dangerous poisonous animal

It is restless and unruly, and it seeks its prey and then pounces and kills. You can drive through animal reserves and admire the wild animals in their natural habitat. But there are warning signs posted all over: Do not leave your car! Do not open your windows! Do not feed the wildlife! These seemingly peaceful animals are capable of doing great damage or even killing someone. Just as some animals are poisonous, some tongues spread poison.

The deceptive thing about poison is that it works secretly and slowly and then kills. Inject just enough “tongue poison” into a conversation and lives can be wrecked. Would you turn wild animals loose in our church? An unruly tongue will accomplish the same results. James reminds us that animals/fire can be tamed; When you tame an animal, you get a worker instead of a destroyer. When you control fire, you generate power. The tongue can’t be tamed by man, it can be tamed by God.

Your tongue need not be “set on fire of hell” 

Like the Apostles at Pentecost, it can be set on fire from heaven!

Power to Delight: the Fountain and Tree. The fountain gives water that man needs to stay alive

In the Old Testament, the presence of a fountain/well was a great blessing to an area. Man needs water not only for drinking, but also for washing, cooking, farming, and a host of other activities so necessary to life. Water is life-giving, and our words can give life. However, if water is not controlled, it brings death and destruction, you all saw this here in 2010.

Water also cleanses. There was a laver in the Old Testament tabernacle and temple, provided for the cleansing of the priest. God’s Word is the spiritual water that cleanses us. Our words to others can help to cleanse and sanctify them.

The tongue is also delightful because it is like a tree

In Bible lands, trees are vitally important to the economy: they help to hold down the soil; they provide beauty and shade; they bear fruit. “Our words can help to shelter and encourage a weary traveler, and can help to feed a hungry soul.”

But James issues a warning: a fountain cannot give forth two kinds of water, and a tree cannot bear two different kinds of fruit

We expect the fountain to flow with sweet water. We expect the fig tree to bear figs. We expect the olive tree to bear olives. If the tongue is inconsistent, there is something wrong with the heart. When Peter was out of fellowship with Christ, he uttered some cursing; but he went out and wept bitterly and confessed his sins.

Our tongue cannot bless the Father and then go bless out man made in the Father’s image. These things ought not so to be

 

“Twelve Words That Can Transform Your Life.” -Warren Wiersbe

If you use these words and sincerely mean what you say from your heart, you will find that God will use you to be a blessing and encouragement to others. There are only twelve of them, but they work.

“Please” and “Thank you.” When you use these three words, you are treating others like people and not things. You are showing appreciation.

“I’m sorry.” These two words have a way of breaking down walls and building bridges.

“I love you.” Too many people read “romance” into these words, but they go much deeper than that. As Christians, we should love the brethren and even love our enemies. “I love you” is a statement that can carry tremendous power.

“I’m praying for you.” And be sure that you are. When you talk to God about people, then you can talk to people about God. Our private praying for people helps us in our public meeting with people. Of course, we never say “I’m praying for you” in a boastful way, as though we are more spiritual than others. We say it in an encouraging way, to let others know that we care enough for them to meet them at the throne of grace.

Pastor Chance Strickland

Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN

http://www.harpethbaptist.org

Proverbs 1:7-15, Father’s Wisdom

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

Fathers give simple wisdom with endless value. In Western culture, the primary influences in the lives of young people include their teachers, their schoolmates, and the entertainment industry. But God’s plan is for parents to be the primary teachers of wisdom. We should all thank God for parents who train us in wisdom.

Proverbs 1:7-15, Father’s Wisdom

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

Call to Worship for June 16th, 2019

Tags

, ,

pexels-photo-248199.jpeg

Click here to see what is planned for this Sunday including message text, songs for each service, special music, and scriptures associated with our songs!

 

 

 

Our special song this week is How Deep the Father’s Love for Us.

 

Praise ye the LORD. I will praise the LORD with my whole heart, in the assembly of the upright, and in the congregation.  Psalms 111:1

 Call to Worship is a weekly post to help prepare our hearts for corporate worship in our Sunday morning service. 

 

1 Peter 4:12-19, Suffering for God’s Glory

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

All that we do is for His glory. Are you prepared to face suffering that may come in the Christian life? How are you living with the suffering you are currently in? My premise in these sermons is that our lives will never be fully fulfilled until we submit ourselves primarily to the pursuit of that which glorifies God.

1 Peter 4:12-19, Suffering for God’s Glory

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

James 3:1-4 Power to Direct: the Bit and Helm

Tags

, , , ,

My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body. Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth.

Several in their assembly wanted to teach and lead

James had to warn them: “Be not many masters.” They were impressed with the authority and prestige of the office and forgot about the tremendous responsibility. Those who teach the Word face the stricter judgment. Teachers must use their tongue to share God’s truth, and it is easy to commit sins of the tongue. Teachers must practice what they teach, or their teaching is hypocrisy. Much damage can be done when a teacher misleads in word or deed.

Some in these assemblies would teach trying to re-introduce keeping the law and circumcision. Others taught truth but wouldn’t live it. Some tried to teach before they knew anything themselves. There were false teachers who would thrive off of the false desires of the crowd. So James writes in regards to the dangers of becoming a teacher within an assembly.

But teachers are not the only ones who are tempted and sin

Every Christian must admit that “in many things we offend all.” Sins of the tongue seem to head the list. We fancy it up today and call it “sticking our foot in our mouth.” It is sin no matter what we call it. James writes that the person who is able to discipline his tongue gives evidence that he can control his whole body. He proves that he is a mature (perfect) man. Words lead to deeds, control words, then control deeds.

Writing about the bit and the helm, James presented two items that are small of themselves, yet exercise great power, just like the tongue.

A small bit enables the rider to control the great horse, with a small rudder the captain steers the huge ship

The tongue is a small member of the body, and yet it has the power to accomplish great things. The bit and the rudder must overcome contrary forces. The bit must overcome the wild nature of the horse. The rudder must fight the winds and currents that would drive the ship off its course. The human tongue also must overcome contrary forces.

We have an old nature that wants to control us and make us sin. There are circumstances around us that would make us say things we shouldn’t say.  This means that both the bit and the rudder must be under the control of a strong hand. The rider keeps the mighty power of his horse under control.  The captain steers the ship even through storms.

When Jesus Christ controls the tongue: We need not fear to say the wrong things or saying the right things in a wrong way! “When Jesus is the Lord of the heart, He is Lord of the lips.” The words we speak affect the lives of others. A judge says “Guilty!” or “Not Guilty!” and those words affect the destiny of the prisoner, his family, and his friends. The President of the United States speaks a few words and signs some papers and the nation is at war.

Even a simple yes or no from the lips of a parent can greatly affect the direction of a child’s life. Never underestimate the guidance you give by the words you speak or do not speak.

Pastor Chance Strickland

Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN

http://www.harpethbaptist.org

1 Peter 4:7-11, Serving for God’s Glory

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

All that we do is for His glory. Peter writes to a suffering church, that they are to be serving for God’s glory. Certainly, we should be as well. In our Prayer Life, with our Hospitality, using our Gifts — our lives should be bringing Glory to God on a regular basis. A good clue, to determine if your life is doing this, is to see it as drawing others to God.

1 Peter 4:7-11, Serving for God’s Glory

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org

 

Call to Worship for June 2nd, 2019

Tags

, ,

pexels-photo-248199.jpeg

Click here to see what is planned for this Sunday including message text, songs for each service, special music, and scriptures associated with our songs!

 

 

 

Our special song this week is the Reformation Hymn.

 

Praise ye the LORD. I will praise the LORD with my whole heart, in the assembly of the upright, and in the congregation.  Psalms 111:1

 Call to Worship is a weekly post to help prepare our hearts for corporate worship in our Sunday morning service. 

 

James 2:21-26 – Living Faith

Tags

, , , ,

Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

Living Faith

James gives living illustrations of living faith.

  • The first is Abraham

A revered patriarch and father of the Hebrew people.

justified by works

This doesn’t contradict Paul’s teaching that Abraham was justified by grace through faith. James cannot mean that Abraham was made righteous before God because of his own good works:

First, James already stressed that salvation is the gift of grace (1:17–18); Also, in verse 23, James quotes Genesis 15:6, which states that God credited righteousness to Abraham on the basis of his faith; Finally, the work that James said justified Abraham was his offering up of Isaac, this occurred many years after he first exercised faith and was declared righteous before God.

Instead, Abraham’s offering of Isaac demonstrates the genuineness of his faith and the reality of his justification before God. James is emphasizing the display before others of a man’s claim to salvation.

By works was faith made perfect

This refers to bringing something to its end, or to its fullness. “Just as a fruit tree has not arrived at its goal until it bears fruit, faith has not reached its end until it demonstrates itself in a righteous life.” James asks, “Seest thou?” Do you see my point?

  • The second is Rahab

A Gentile prostitute is James’ 2nd illustration of living faith

Rahab the harlot 

The OT records her faith, which was the basis of her justification before God. She demonstrated the reality of her faith when she protected the messengers of God at personal risk. James did not intend, however, for those words to be a commendation of her occupation or her lying.

Justified by works 

The Greek verb dikaioo (justified) has two general meanings. The first pertains to acquittal, declaring and treating a person as righteous; The second meaning pertains to vindication or proof of righteousness; It is this 2nd meaning that is in view in this passage.

Rahab was justified by works, or her faith was vindicated. She had to have faith to hang the cord out the window before anything ever happened. She had to have faith to believe the men & hide them.

The 3rd illustration of living faith is a human body

While a dead body is by appearances the person we knew, once the soul is gone that person is not there. The body is dead. James says so it is with faith. When unaccompanied by works, it is dead. Living faith will be proved or vindicated by works.

Pastor Chance Strickland

Harpeth Baptist Church
Kingston Springs, TN

http://www.harpethbaptist.org

1 Peter 4:1-6, Following Christ

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

Christ’s suffering is a pattern for the believer. Christian, would you respond to the Word of God today? Do I live By the Will of God? Do I live Counter to Culture? Once you’ve experienced forgiveness of sin, a renewed life, a relationship with God, you’ll never go back!

1 Peter 4:1-6, Following Christ

Download File


This podcast is a ministry of Harpeth Baptist Church in Kingston Springs, TN“Holding Forth the Word of Life.” 

Feel free to contact us:
1011 Butterworth Road
Kingston Springs, TN
615-378-1136
http://www.harpethbaptist.org