The Universal Question: "Why Do the Heathen Rage?"
I. ‑Four Societies of Rebellion Against the Lord (1-3)
A. Nations Seethe (1)
B. People Strategize (1)
C. Kings Spurn (2)
D. Rulers Scheme (2-3)
II. ‑Four Deeds of God toward the Enemy (4-6)
A. He Laughs at them (4)
B. He scoffs at them (4)
C. He speaks to them in anger and wrath (5)
D. He vexes them in His displeasure (5-6)
III. ‑Three Decrees of the Lord pertaining to the Son (7-9)
A. Begotten of the Lord (7)
B. Gifts from the Lord (8)
C. Commands from the Lord (9)
IV. ‑Five Recommendations of David for the Heathens (10-12)
A. Be wise and discerning (10)
B. Be instructed and warned (10)
C. Serve the Lord with fear and reverence (11)
D. Rejoice with trembling (11)
E. Kiss (submit to) the Son (12)
Sovereign Grace Church
Returning to God
Joel 2:12-20, 24-26
Israel had drifted away from God. Joel the prophet warns them to repent and turn back to God. The same message is needed today for God'[s people. Many are like those in the Laodicean church (Rev. 3:14-20), feeling satisfied but not knowing they are in desperate need of God. Note the steps back to God:
I. Concern (vv. 12-14).
A. ‑Repenting-This means godly sorrow (v. 12; cf. Mark 9:29; Acts 20:31; James 4:9).
B. ‑Remorse-(v. 13; cf. Ex. 32:32; Matt. 9:36).
C. ‑Results (v. 14, note Ps. 126:5-6; cf. Gal. 6:9).
II. Congregate (vv. 15-16).
A. ‑Solemnity (v. 15). Church is necessary and important for all-c.f. Ps. 122:1; Heb. 10:25).
B. ‑Sanctify (v. 16). All need to pray as David prayed in Ps. 139:23-24.
III. Contrition (v. 17).
A. ‑Praying: Jesus wept over the lost (Matt. 23:27) and when he saw sorrow (John 11:35).
B. ‑Pleading-"Spare my people." (cf. Rom. 9:3; Acts 20-31).
IV. Covenant (vv. 18-20).
A. ‑Pity (v. 18). God looks upon the heart (1 Sam. 16:7); when He sees sincerity, He will keep His promise and answer.
B. ‑Promise (v. 19). If we keep His commands & obey His laws, He will answer-cf. 2 Chron. 7:14.
C. ‑Power (v. 20). When we follow the Lord, & meet His conditions, He will send victory.
V. Compensation (vv. 24-26).
A. ‑Provision (v. 24). He will meet all our needs (Phil. 4:19; Ps. 37:25).
B. ‑Promise (v. 25). He will restore that which was destroyed by the enemy-cf. Job 42:12-13.
C. Plenty (v. 26; cf. Mal. 3:10).
Conclusion: As we return to God, we will have power, peace, and provision. When we obey His will, our lives will be pleasing to Him; and because of this, we will reach and win many lost souls to Christ.
Croft M. Pentz
The Value of a Soul
I. The Fabulous Treasure, shown by:
A. -Creativity: by Whom created.
B. ‑Potentiality: made in the likeness of God-if transfomed by Jesus Christ.
C. ‑Durability: everlasting life-in heaven or in hell (Dan. 12:2).
D. -Rarity: each soul absolutely unique.
E. ‑Desirability: you are worth Jesus dying on the cross.
II. A Foolish Transaction (Mark 8:36-37).
A. ‑No one gains the whole world-people sell out so cheaply.
B. -What you do gain, you can't keep.
C. ‑If you could keep it, it would never satisfy. We were made to know and love God.
D. -A tragic loss:
1. Irreversible loss (Ezek. 34:16).
2. Immeasurable loss.
3. Irreplaceable loss.
III. An Inexcusable Loss: It does not have to happen.
IV. A Fatal Tragedy.
Illust.: Man converted all his wealth to one great diamond before coming to America. At sea, he found fame by playing with the diamond, as though he could afford its loss. But he tossed it up once too often and all he had was lost.
Love Worth Finding
God Is Able
"For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones" (Matt. 3:9 nkjv).
We serve a God who is able. Our God is able:
I. To Save Us (Dan. 3:17, Heb. 7:25).
II. To Make Us Stand (Rom. 14:4).
III. To Establish Us (Rom. 16:25).
IV. To Make All Grace Abound to Us (2 Cor. 9:8).
V. To Do Immeasurably More Than We Ask or Think (Eph. 3:20).
VI. To Guard What We Have Entrusted to Him (2 Tim. 1:12).
VII. To Keep Us From Falling (Jude 24).
The Three R's of Christ's Coming
1 Thessalonians. 4:16-18 nkjv
I. ‑Return-"For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and the trumpet of God" (v. 16a).
II. ‑Resurrection-"And the dead in Christ will rise first" (v. 16b).
III. ‑Reunion-"Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord" (v. 17).
Conclusion: "Therefore comfort one another with these words" (v. 18).
Son of Encouragement
Foundational inquiry: What is the profile of an authentic biblical encourager? It is wonderful when you run into an encourager. Often they don't know they are one.
I. An Encourager Is First a Biblical Christian
A. -He is born again (John 3:3).
B. ‑The Bible is his daily guide (Ps. 119:105).
II. An Encourager Is Christ-Like
A. ‑He is an imitator of Jesus ("Christian" means, "little Christ").
B. ‑He has compassion on the multitudes (Matt. 9:36).
C. ‑He cares for the least of these (Matt. 25:31-46).
III. An Encourager Has an Obedient Spirit
A. ‑He loves the Lord with all that he is (Matt 22:35-38).
B. -He loves his neighbor.
C. ‑He seeks first the Kingdom of God (Matt. 6:33).
D. -He denies himself (Matt. 16:24).
E. -He serves others not self (Phil. 2:3-4).
F. -He reaches out to others (Matt. 20:28).
G. ‑His focus is on things above, not things of this world (Col. 3:1-3).
H. ‑He makes disciples and teaches God's commandments (Matt. 28:19-20).
I. -He is a John 15 disciple:
1. He knows "apart" from Jesus he "can do nothing" (John 15:5a).
2. He glorifies the Father by bearing much fruit (John 15:8).
3. He loves the brethren (John 15:12).
IV. An Encourager Thrives on His Labor's Fruit.
A. ‑He is not satisfied with a moment's elation (e.g., Ananias and Sapphira).
B. ‑He incites and exhorts others to act (Stephen).
C. ‑His reward is a changed life (Paul at the Areopagus).
Application/Challenge: The greatest encourager is the Holy Spirit; He is referred to as the paracletos!-one who comes alongside, to console and to counsel, to edify and exhort! Encouragement can be done by anyone who will simply try to see those around them through the eyes of Christ, and there is a great need for people who will lift up rather than put down. It is a gift that we all must cultivate.
J. A. Gillmartin,
The SHEEP'S CRIB-Sermons