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← Show Me in the Bible Where I Can't Do That - Ask Pastor Tim

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Showing Revision 10 created 05/29/2018 by Rieann Brown.

  1. Perhaps you've caught a little bit of this

  2. if you've been with us
    in our Sunday service
  3. the last two Sundays.
  4. You might have picked
    up a little bit of this.
  5. It's kind of come across in being alive,
  6. being raised up with Christ.
  7. And we're really going
    to get into this week
  8. just being seated in the
    heavenly places with Christ -
  9. this whole perspective on
    living the Christian's life.
  10. And as I made mention,
  11. maybe some of you are far more aware
  12. than I am. You probably are.
  13. Any of you that have Facebook,
  14. I don't have a Facebook account
  15. except whatever you see there
  16. was created by James.
  17. I don't have anything to do with it.
  18. I never look at it.
  19. I don't know what's on it.
  20. If material gets added,
    it's not me doing it.
  21. It's somebody else.
  22. But I know that our elders
  23. recently have become aware
  24. just of a situation
  25. of professing Christians watching a movie
  26. that, in my estimation,
  27. is absolutely inappropriate
  28. for a professing Christian.
  29. And some of you may be aware
  30. of what's being called the New Calvinism
  31. or this Neo-Calvinism
  32. or this "Young, Restless,
    and Reformed" bunch.
  33. I don't know how much you folks here -
  34. some of you young people -
  35. I don't know how much you
    even know about that movement;
  36. how much you actually
    identify with that movement,
  37. but one of the things that I saw -
  38. it was months ago, but I saw
  39. where John Piper was addressing
  40. this New Calvinism.
  41. And one of the things
    that he feared about it
  42. was that it is breeding antinomianism -
  43. just a license for lawlessness;
  44. just a license for sin.
  45. This really seems to be abounding.
  46. These guys like to talk election.
  47. They like to talk predestination
  48. and talk all about the different
  49. high and lofty doctrines of Calvinism,
  50. but they seem to be really lacking
  51. when it comes to holiness.
  52. And anyways, like I say,

  53. our elders became aware of
  54. some professing Christians.
  55. And there was comment going back and forth
  56. on the Internet about this
  57. and about the appropriateness.
  58. Well, let me just tell you.
  59. I know from my wife used to bring up
  60. this website called pluggedin.com,
  61. where you can basically disect any movie
  62. as far as the content, explicit content,
  63. language, sex, violence,
  64. occultic things, anything like that.
  65. The movie that I have in mind here,
  66. pluggedin.com says it has 50 F-words,
  67. 40 S-words,
  68. God's name is misused repeatedly,
  69. assorted other indecent language,
  70. sex, violence, occult, hypnotists.
  71. Pluggedin.com sizes up this movie
  72. by saying it is bloody and profane.
  73. And in the past,
  74. we've actually had situations
  75. where some of the
    communication back and forth
  76. has been about music.
  77. People listening to music
  78. that's got profanity,
  79. or these worldly rap guys.
  80. And this kind of discussion
    seems to come up
  81. where whether it's music,
  82. whether it's something
    people are watching on TV,
  83. whether it's something people are
    being exposed to on the Internet,
  84. or movies people are going to,
  85. and one of the things
  86. that came out in this discussion
  87. that I heard firsthand,
  88. is "show me in the Bible
  89. where it says I can't do that."
  90. Okay, we look at that
    and we say as Christians,
  91. well, shouldn't our life
    be guided by Scripture?
  92. Absolutely.
  93. I want everybody to totally understand.
  94. I, in no way, am downplaying
  95. the importance of Scripture
  96. in the life of a Christian.
  97. Not at all.
  98. In fact, I want to emphasize
  99. the necessity of Scripture to point out
  100. what's really important
    in the Christian life.
  101. When somebody comes along and says -
  102. you now, you want to talk to them
  103. about some activity in their life.
  104. (Brother, you want to jump over here?)
  105. But you know, we can talk to people
  106. about different things in their life
  107. that don't seem appropriate;
  108. seem out of place;
  109. seem unfitting;
  110. seem worldly;
  111. seem indecent; seem profane.
  112. And people want to say,
  113. "Show me in the Bible where it says that."
  114. It's like, "Show me the rules."
  115. "Show me the law."
  116. That kind of living
    of the Christian life -
  117. I want to attack that.
  118. I want to deal with that.
    I want to address that.
  119. Because to live your life that way
  120. is really to miss it.
  121. That's not living the Christian life
  122. according to New Testament principles.
  123. It's something else.
  124. In fact, it's a manifestation of legalism.
  125. It's a manifestation of people
  126. who want a list of rules,
  127. and show me the rule that says
  128. I can do that or can't do that.
  129. It's basically, always
    asking the question,
  130. "What's permissible?"
  131. What's permissible?
  132. How close to the line can I live
  133. and still be a Christian?
  134. How much of the world can I bring in?
  135. What's wrong with that?
  136. What's wrong with drinking?
  137. What's wrong with - the
    thing is today - marijuana?
  138. Or show me in the
    Bible where it says that.
  139. Show me in the Bible where it
    says I'm supposed to evangelize.
  140. Show me the rule.
  141. Brethren, living your life that way
  142. is a manifestation of nothing less
  143. than legalism.
  144. It's simply wanting to be
    under a code of laws,
  145. a code of ethics,
  146. a list of rules,
  147. and you need your
    whole life guided by that.
  148. Show me the rule.
  149. There's just something about that.
  150. When I hear that kind of language,
  151. sometimes I'm amazed.
  152. And I'm not the only one.
  153. Listen to this.

  154. Now, I know this quote isn't exactly
  155. along the line of what
    I'm talking about right now,
  156. but it's close.
  157. It's got some parallels.
  158. Listen to this. This is John Piper
  159. speaking actually about a quote
  160. that he got from J.I. Packer.
  161. Just hang with me here -
  162. there's a connection. You'll see it.
  163. Piper says this, "In the church,
  164. we've developed all kinds
  165. of Christ-coated remedies
  166. that are shallow and short-lived.
  167. We are not by and large
    the deeply grounded saints
  168. that some of our forefathers were.
  169. J.I. Packer compares
    the old English Puritans
  170. who lived and suffered from 1550 to 1700
  171. with the Redwoods of California.
  172. They were giants whose roots
  173. were incredibly deep in the Bible,
  174. and whose branches reached to the heavens,
  175. and whose trunks were
    so strong and durable
  176. they could endure forest fires
  177. that scar them but don't kill them.
  178. Packer says affluence seems
  179. for the past generation to be making
  180. dwarfs and deadheads of us all."
  181. You see, that's what I don't want.

  182. I don't want a room full
    of dwarfs and deadheads.
  183. Brethren, if regeneration is real
  184. and it's the work of Almighty God
  185. and He has actually taken people
  186. and made new creations out of them,
  187. and if indeed like we're
    going to see on Sunday
  188. we're seated in
    heavenly places with Christ -
  189. if that is true of us,
  190. why are there not more Redwoods today?
  191. Why deadheads?
  192. Anyway...
  193. "We do not have the patience

  194. to sink the roots of hospitality
  195. and brotherly kindness
  196. and authentic love in the deep rock
  197. of Romans 6-8."
  198. Piper was preaching through those chapters
  199. at the time that he said this.
  200. "We want to jump straight
  201. from the justification
  202. to the practical
    application of chapter 12.
  203. Just give us a list."
  204. The reason he goes to 12 -
  205. the reason he's talking 5 and 12,
  206. is because 5 deals
    with justification by faith.
  207. We have peace through God -
    if you think about 5:1.
  208. Our sins are forgiven
  209. based on the merits
    of what Jesus Christ did.
  210. Just tell me about my redemption.
  211. Tell me about my forgiveness.
  212. And then take me to the list of rules.
  213. Which, there are some lists of things
  214. if you remember, if you think,
  215. when you get 10 or 12 verses
  216. into Romans 12,
  217. you begin to get a list of various things
  218. that come at us.
  219. And he's saying that's how
    most people want to live.
  220. Tell me I'm forgiven.
  221. Now give me the list of things.
  222. So I can basically live my life that way.
  223. Do this. Don't do that.
  224. And just live our lives.
  225. But see, the thing that Piper's hitting at
  226. is that's what makes
    for shallow Christians.
  227. Tell me my sins are forgiven.
    Give me the list of things to do.
  228. That's not how we live the Christian life.
  229. "Just give us a list.

  230. Tell us what to do.
  231. But the Puritans were different.
  232. They looked at the book of Romans
  233. and saw that life is built another way -
  234. being a sage, being a redwood,
  235. being unshakeable in storm
  236. and useful in times of
    indescribable suffering -
  237. that does not come quickly or easily.
  238. Romans is not two chapters long.
  239. It's 16 chapters long.
  240. It does not skip from chapter 5 to 12.
  241. It leads us deep down into the roots
  242. of godliness, so that when we come up,
  243. we're not people with lists."
  244. You see, that's the thing.

  245. That's what's so amazing to me
  246. is when people say,
  247. "Show me in the Bible
  248. where I shouldn't do that."
  249. You see, that's where you
    want to say to them,
  250. "have you never read Romans 6-8?
  251. Have you never plunged down in the depths
  252. of 'sin no longer has dominion'?"
  253. Eternal life is at the end of:
  254. I've died to sin. I'm a slave to God.
  255. I'm now bearing this fruit
  256. unto sanctification.
  257. The end of all of this is eternal life.
  258. I'm not married to the law anymore.
  259. I'm married to Christ and there's freedom.
  260. Not freedom as a license to sin.
  261. A freedom to serve God.
  262. It's going through the depths
  263. of that kind of teaching
  264. before you ever get to any sort of list.
  265. It says, "It leads us down deep
  266. into the roots of godliness,
  267. so that when we come up,
  268. we're not people with lists,
  269. but people with unshakeable life
  270. and strength and holiness
  271. and wisdom and love."
  272. Now, listen to another Piper quote.

  273. This is Piper - I believe it's when
  274. he did his biographical sketch
  275. of C.S. Lewis.
  276. And he was actually talking about
  277. as a young Christian,
  278. trying to sort things out,
  279. and he got exposure to C.S. Lewis.
  280. And look, there's much that Lewis
  281. says, does, did, believed -
  282. I would not stand by it at all.
  283. But here's what Piper said.
  284. "Somehow there had been wakened in me
  285. a passion for the essence
  286. and the main point of life.
  287. The ethical question whether something
  288. is permissible..."
  289. See, that's what he was dealing with.
  290. As a young Christian, this idea
  291. of asking that question all the time,
  292. just looking at something and saying,
  293. "is it permissible?"
  294. "...faded in relationship to the question:
  295. what is the main thing?
    The essential thing?
  296. The thought of building a life
  297. around minimal morality
  298. or minimal significance -
  299. a life defined by the question:
  300. what is permissible? -
  301. felt almost disgusting to me.
  302. I didn't want a minimal life.
  303. I didn't want to live on
    the outskirts of reality.
  304. I wanted to understand
    the main thing about life
  305. and pursue it."
  306. Now, I know I've been quoting Piper.

  307. We're going to get to Scripture now.
  308. But brethren, if you think about it.
  309. Just think about the arguments
  310. of the epistles,
  311. or the way Jesus, when He had opportunity
  312. to pull His disciples aside -
  313. and He began teaching them.
  314. Where in the world do you ever find
  315. just a list of ethics?
  316. A list of morality?
  317. Christianity in the New Testament
  318. is not just a list of rules.
  319. "Show me in the Bible
    where it says I can't do that."
  320. Always looking for what's permissible.
  321. That's dismal, horrible kind of religion.
  322. Here's what Scripture
    says as we're thinking
  323. about the book of Romans.
  324. You know what's interesting?
  325. When you get to Romans 14 -
  326. and what do we all know Romans 14 for?
  327. What jumps out at you as being
  328. one of the key
    characteristics of Romans 14?
  329. Romans 14 is where it talks to us
  330. about having differences, right?
  331. Some eat. Some don't eat.
  332. Some observe the day.
  333. Some don't observe the day.
  334. Well, isn't that interesting?
  335. Let's just think right there.
  336. Is that a list of rules?
  337. Actually, that's Paul telling people:
  338. you know what?
  339. That guy over there can do it.
  340. That guy over there can't do it.
  341. She can eat. She doesn't eat.
  342. No list of rules.
  343. There's much bigger things
  344. than a list of rules.
  345. Isn't that right?
  346. And see, when he gets done with it,
  347. you know what he says?
  348. This is what? 14:17?
  349. He says the kingdom of God
  350. is not all about eating and drinking.
  351. What's that?
  352. That's rules.
  353. It's not about a list of rules
  354. as to whether I can drink alcohol or not.
  355. That's not how you live your life.
  356. It's not simply:
  357. is it permissible for a
    Christian to drink wine?
  358. After all, Jesus Christ - look what He did
  359. over there at the wedding.
  360. That's not how you live.
  361. Yes, we take those things
    into consideration.
  362. We look at them, but as
    we live out our life,
  363. the question we're not always asking
  364. is: is it permissible?
  365. Can I eat? Can I not eat?
  366. Yes, there are verses that say
  367. that if you forbid people to eat,
  368. it's demonic doctrine.
  369. There are those who come along and say
  370. you can't eat, you can't marry.
  371. We know. There's demon doctrine out there.
  372. We need to be able to
    distinguish between them.
  373. But brethren, can't you hear Paul here?
  374. He's saying to the Romans
  375. there's bigger issues
  376. than rules around eating and drinking.
  377. That's not the issue.
  378. The kingdom of God is about righteousness.
  379. What else?
  380. It's about peace.
  381. It's about joy in the Holy Spirit.
  382. You see, joy in the Holy Spirit.
  383. I just had a meeting not too long before

  384. the Bible study tonight.
  385. And a sister was telling me about
  386. a season in her life
  387. where she lacked assurance.
  388. And she told me right off,
  389. she'd grieved the Spirit. She knew it.
  390. Joy in the Holy Spirit.
  391. See, those are the kind of
    questions to be asking.
  392. Is this going to bring any shadow
  393. between me and the Lord?
  394. Because I don't want that.
  395. See, it's not, "is it permissible?"
  396. I feel like Piper -
  397. that kind of thinking is disgusting
  398. for a Christian to even
    think on that level -
  399. or professing Christian.
  400. In the end, what we're going to find
  401. is many people who talk that way -
  402. the reason they talk that way
  403. is because they're under the law.
  404. And that's how people under the law think.
  405. That's how slaves think.
  406. (incomplete thought)
  407. See, the slave doesn't enjoy

  408. what the master tells him to do.
  409. But he's always aware of the law,
  410. of the rules.
  411. Because if he doesn't do the rule,
  412. what's going to happen?
  413. He's going to get punished.
  414. He's going to get whipped.
  415. He's going to get beat.
  416. He's going to get his leg chopped off.
  417. You do what the master says
  418. or there's consequences.
  419. See, you're always mindful of the rules.
  420. The rules, the rules, the rules.
  421. That is to be under the law.
  422. (incomplete thought)
  423. The legalist is absorbed with rules
  424. rather than with God;
  425. rather than with his fellow man
  426. in true holiness.
  427. Life is viewed as primarily what I do.
  428. It's breaking all my actions down.
  429. The do's, the don't's,
  430. the particular actions all in terms of:
  431. is it permissible?
  432. Is it not?
  433. Versus: the kingdom of God
  434. is about righteousness.
  435. It's about what pleases the King.
  436. See, righteousness -
  437. that's the character of the King,
  438. the Kingdom of God.
  439. That's the character of the King Himself.
  440. What is the character of God?
  441. How can I be like Him?
  442. What does Peter say?

  443. Does Peter not call us to be holy?
  444. Why?
  445. Be ye holy. Why?
  446. What's the argument?
  447. Come on, folks.
  448. James: They're whispering back here.
  449. Tim: Let's be aggressive.
  450. What was it?
  451. Yeah, you shall be holy, for I am holy.
  452. Listen to Ephesians 4.

  453. Ephesians 4:17 and following.
  454. We're going to come
    to this in our studies,
  455. but you know what?
  456. Paul comes along and he says
  457. you shouldn't walk
    like Gentiles any longer.
  458. You shouldn't act like them.
  459. You shouldn't live your lives that way,
  460. walk like the Gentiles do
  461. in the futility of their mind.
  462. He basically breaks down how they live.
  463. They're alienated from the life of God.
  464. They're living in all this sensuality.
  465. What's the reason?
  466. Because Jesus Christ gave you a list
  467. of do's and don't's?
  468. You know what he says?
  469. That is not the way you learned Christ,
  470. assuming that you have learned Him.
  471. Isn't that interesting?
    He tacks that on the end.
  472. You see, that's the issue.
  473. How did you learn Christ?
  474. Let me ask you this -

  475. I would just ask you all this:
  476. When you do something with your life,
  477. how did you learn Christ?
  478. I mean, that's the kind of question
  479. that needs to be going through your mind.
  480. You know what I learn about Him?
  481. I learn when I get to the book of Acts,
  482. He came and He went about doing good.
  483. You know what's amazing to me?
  484. Well, you think about this.
  485. You all now what's happening out there
  486. in social media and what
    the discussions are about
  487. far more than I do.
  488. Let me ask you a question.
  489. The people who it seems like
  490. are legalists -
  491. show them a rule.
  492. That's how they talk all the time.
  493. Show me a rule for that.
  494. Show me a rule for that.
  495. Is that who you want
    for a husband or wife?
  496. "I want you to hug me."
    "Show me a rule for that!"
  497. Look, if you start to even contemplate
  498. that on that level -
  499. a wife says, "I want my
    husband to hold me,"
  500. and the husband says,
    "show me a rule for that."
  501. You don't want a husband like that.
  502. Can you see how God would be
  503. absolutely disgusted
  504. with that kind of life?
  505. Listen, there is a huge difference
  506. between morality and holiness.
  507. This idea of just
    basically living your life
  508. according to some moral code:
  509. "Show me where it says that."
  510. "Show me where I have to do that."
  511. Like this argument against evangelism.

  512. People who say,
  513. "Show me in the Bible..."
  514. Back in William Carey's day,
  515. that was a big thing.
  516. They wanted to downplay
    the Great Commission
  517. as though it was only for the apostles.
  518. Carey came along and said -
  519. he used numerous arguments,
  520. but his main one being,
  521. look, the promise is that
    Christ will be with us
  522. to the end of the age.
  523. Doesn't that mean that our responsibility
  524. to go to all of the nations
  525. is a responsibility that lasts
  526. as long as the promise does?
  527. Certainly so.
  528. But look, let me just ask this.

  529. It's the old: if you have
    the cure for cancer,
  530. and the world all around
    you is dying of cancer...
  531. "Show me a rule where it
    says I have to go share
  532. the remedy with everybody else."
  533. See, that's what the legalist does.
  534. Show me the law.
  535. Show me the rule.
  536. I don't care if the rest
    of the world goes to hell.
  537. You see what's operating there?
  538. The kingdom is not about a list of rules.
  539. It's Jesus saying love one another
  540. the way I loved you.
  541. Now, I know that's among Christians,
  542. but we have a responsibility to
    love our neighbor as ourselves
  543. out there in this world.
  544. If I have the remedy
  545. to save people's souls from hell,
  546. am I going to sit there and debate?
  547. "Show me in the Bible
    where I have to go do that!"
  548. It's like what is wrong with you?
  549. Something is wrong with that person.
  550. Just like something is
    wrong with the person
  551. that can come out of a movie
  552. with 50 F-bombs dropped
    in the middle of it -
  553. "Show me in the Bible
    where I can't do that."
  554. It's like seriously?
  555. Let me ask you guys a question.
  556. If you were in the worst part -
  557. not of this city,
    this is a rather tame city -
  558. let's talk St. Louis
    or Detroit or Chicago.
  559. You imagine you're in
    one of the worst parts
  560. of one of those cities.
  561. You're in an alley.
  562. And you see four guys -
  563. all you can see is their silhouette
  564. from the streetlight behind them.
  565. They're walking down
    the alley towards you
  566. and they're huge.
  567. Would it comfort you more
  568. to know that they had just
    come out of a Bible study?
  569. Or that all four of them
    just came out of a movie
  570. where 50 F-bombs were dropped?
  571. Which would make you feel more comfortable
  572. walking down that alley?
  573. There's testimony issues.

  574. Let me ask you this.
  575. The guy who's always arguing about why
  576. he doesn't have a biblical responsibility
  577. to evangelize,
  578. or just questions like that:
  579. "Show me in the Bible where
    I'm supposed to do that."
  580. If you were sick at the end of your life
  581. and you had to be cared for by somebody,
  582. is that the kind of person you want
  583. caring for you?
  584. "Show me in the Bible where it says that!"
  585. That doesn't produce righteousness
  586. and peace and joy and love.
  587. You know what does that?
  588. Learning of Jesus.
  589. Jesus said, "Learn of Me."
  590. He said, "Take My yoke."
  591. He said, "Learn of Me."
  592. You see, that's where Paul's coming from.
  593. That's not the way you
    learned Jesus Christ.
  594. Oh brethren, think with me here.

  595. Many of you know from
    Brother Charles' book
  596. about the story of Evangeline Booth.
  597. William Booth, Salvation Army -
  598. his daughter.
  599. You know the story if
    you've read the book.
  600. Perhaps some of you know it beyond there.
  601. Where they were bringing the woman -
  602. prisoner, guards carrying her.
  603. There's Evangeline
    standing off to the side.
  604. "How can I reach this woman?"
  605. Suddenly, she just steps out there
  606. and kisses the woman on the cheek.
  607. Show me a law that says
    you have to do that.
  608. There's no law.
  609. There's no rule.
  610. I can tell you if I'm
    at the end of my life
  611. and you're saying,
  612. who do you want to care for you?
  613. The person who could go
  614. watch filthy, bloody, profane,
  615. God's name dragged through the mud movies,
  616. sex - and want to defend their right
  617. to go watch it.
  618. You're at the end of your life.
  619. Do you want that person to care for you?
  620. Or Evangeline Booth?
  621. Brethren, it speaks volumes.
  622. There is a kind of
    New Testament Christianity -

  623. do you learn from Christ
  624. that going to movies like that -
  625. would He do it?
  626. Look, if you say yes, I believe He would,
  627. then you have a different
    Christ than the One I have.
  628. What I have isn't the issue.
  629. That's a different Christ
    than the One here.
  630. Here's the problem with people like that.
  631. They go through their life constantly
    asking what's permissible,
  632. rather than what can I do?
  633. You see, when I hear about the fact
  634. that we're supposed to let our good works
  635. be seen before men
  636. that they might glorify
    our Father in Heaven;
  637. or like Peter says,
  638. "glorify God in the day of visitation," -
  639. again, it's got to do with them
    seeing our good works.
  640. And Jesus saying, "The works
    I did, you will do..." believer.
  641. Greater works.
  642. You see, one of the things is,
  643. people that are always asking,
  644. "Where's the line?"
    "Where's the minimal line?"
  645. "What's permissible?"
  646. "What can I get away with?"
  647. "Show me in the Bible where it says that."
  648. You know what people
    like that are not doing?
  649. All they're doing is walking through life
  650. constrained by legalistic codes,
  651. and they're not people who just freely fly
  652. on the wings of an eagle to do good.
  653. Brethren, the life of the
    Christian is not just:
  654. "Show me where I can't do that."
  655. (Incomplete thought)
  656. I met with a couple today

  657. who were telling me about their desires
  658. to help care for inner city kids.
  659. Again, I ask you,
  660. you're 89 years old.
  661. A family member, somebody from the church,
  662. somebody's going to take care of you.
  663. You want it to be the person
  664. who is thinking:
    how can I care for children?
  665. Versus living their life like:
  666. "I can go to that movie."
  667. "Show me in the Bible
    where it says I can't."
  668. What kind of Christianity do you all want?
  669. What kind of person would
    you want caring for you?
  670. What kind of person would you
    want to meet in that alley?
  671. Righteousness, peace,

  672. joy in the Holy Spirit.
  673. Morality - it's always concerned
  674. with specific actions.
  675. Where holiness is a life picture.
  676. Am I being conformed to the image of God?
  677. Am I being conformed
    to the image of Christ?
  678. Is true righteousness all of my life?
  679. Is it there?
  680. Brethren, everything
    in the legalist's mind
  681. just gets boiled down
    to individual actions.
  682. "Is it permissible?"
  683. "Is it right? Is it wrong?"
  684. "Give me a rule."
    "Give me rules."
  685. You see, that's what Packer was saying
  686. about the Puritans.
  687. Their lives are buried deep.
  688. It's kind of like the doctrines
    we're going through in Ephesians.
  689. You notice, this is not a list of rules.
  690. What we're dealing with is Paul
  691. saying to Christians,
  692. as you live your life,
    live in the reality:
  693. alive with Christ,
    raised up with Christ,
  694. seated with Christ in the heavenly places
  695. in Christ Jesus.
  696. That's the reality.
  697. We're living life on another plane.
  698. We're going to look at texts
  699. that tie in over to Colossians.
  700. But you're setting your
    minds on things above
  701. where Christ is seated.
  702. You're living on another plane.
  703. You're living in another realm.
  704. You're outside of this
    minimal morality mentality.
  705. (incomplete thought).
  706. Brethren, don't you see

  707. when you come to the New Testament,
  708. and you find the
    legalists were always like:
  709. "Hey! Hey! Put down your bedding!
  710. What do you think you're doing?
  711. It's the Sabbath!
  712. Not permissible to do that!"
  713. You see, we can look and we can say,
  714. yeah, how did David eat the show bread
  715. which he was not supposed to eat?
  716. Because brethren, that right there
  717. goes to the heart of the matter.
  718. Paul made as strong a case
    as anybody in the Scriptures
  719. that you should pay those
    who minister the gospel.
  720. And yet, he was the first one to say
  721. to the Corinthians and
    to the Thessalonians,
  722. "I'm not going to take anything."
  723. Wait!
  724. You set down a law!
  725. Don't muzzle the ox!
  726. That's the law!
  727. You better pay me!
  728. (incomplete thought)
  729. You see, you miss it.
  730. You miss it if you don't recognize
  731. that Jesus let the adulteress walk.
  732. You say, hey, wait a second.
  733. The law said stone her.
  734. Or He healed on the Sabbath.
  735. Or He let His disciples pick grain,
  736. rub them in their hands and eat.
  737. Or He told the lame
  738. to pick up their bedding and walk.
  739. They were "breaking the rules."
  740. (Incomplete thought).
  741. But you see, if you're just
  742. contrained by rules,
  743. you don't get it.
  744. Jesus looked at those
    Pharisees and He said,
  745. "That's exactly your problem.
  746. You're all about rules."
  747. And all rules do is they
    leave you on the surface -
  748. this thin veneer of morality.
  749. That's all it is, because in the heart,
    it's a person under the law.
  750. Because in the heart, they
    really don't want to do it.
  751. They're just keeping the rule
  752. because they're afraid of the punishment;
  753. they're afraid of the
    consequences if they don't do it.
  754. They're just trapped in there.
  755. Rather than standing back and saying:
  756. Look, I want mercy, not sacrifice.
  757. That's all the rule
    keeping is is sacrifice.
  758. If you could prove to that person,
  759. like, you go over to Ephesians 5
  760. and you say, look, filthiness,
  761. crude jesting, it's not appropriate.
  762. Oh, okay, you showed me the rule.
  763. Okay, the movie that I wanted to go see,
  764. now I can't because I've got a law.
  765. That is such the wrong way.
  766. The wrong way.
  767. Brethren, you know what you find?

  768. The Apostle Paul - think of Philippians 3.
  769. The Apostle Paul, when he was lost -
  770. religious, moral.
  771. It's all about the rules.
  772. Boy, I was circumcised on the right day
  773. according to the rule.
  774. I mean, when it came to the law,
  775. I dotted every "I", I crossed every "t."
  776. I was right on.
  777. I was blameless.
  778. Give me a rule - I was right there.
  779. I kept them.
  780. But what happens once he's saved?
  781. You see how his attitude changed?
  782. What does he say then?
  783. Oh, that I might know Him
  784. and the power of His resurrection.
  785. Look, we live our lives;
  786. we do things.
  787. But it's not a matter of
    a list of right or wrong,
  788. just like Romans 14.
  789. It's not: could I in certain circumstance
  790. drink wine?
  791. It's not just the rule.
  792. Paul's looking back and he's looking
  793. at how this affects people;
  794. how your decisions are a reflection
  795. of God Himself;
  796. how it reflects what you've
    been taught of Christ;
  797. how it reflects righteousness;
  798. how it reflects peace;
  799. how it reflects joy in the Holy Spirit.
  800. It's just living on an
    entirely higher plane.
  801. It's got to do with what does God think?
  802. What's His will?
  803. What's going to be pleasing?
  804. What's going to bring His smile?
  805. It's living on that level.
  806. (incomplete thought)
  807. Listen, you know the Bible talks about
  808. bad companionship
  809. corrupts good manners.
  810. And you can go to the Proverbs
  811. and you could find:
  812. you want to be wise?
  813. Walk with the wise.
  814. You want to be a fool?
    Walk with fools.
  815. You know what?
  816. It's almost like with the
    invention of electricity,
  817. we don't define companions
  818. the right way anymore.
  819. I read a story one time

  820. about a family that let an old man
  821. move into their house.
  822. And he sat over in the corner.
  823. And he was filthy. He was lewd.
  824. He used God's name in vain.
  825. He just did graphic things,
  826. and the whole gist of the story
  827. was that old man sitting in the corner
  828. doing all those things
    and being tolerated by the family
  829. was a picture of the television.
  830. The thing is it's almost like
  831. we have come to the place where we think
  832. that a person isn't a companion
  833. if a TV screen or a computer
    screen separates us.
  834. That's not true.
  835. What is a companion?

  836. This has to do with the idea
  837. of people we surround ourselves with.
  838. People who we allow to influence us.
  839. You may not have a person
  840. come into your house,
  841. but you may expose yourself
  842. on the Internet to people who end up
  843. influencing you;
  844. people that end up saying things;
  845. people that end up injecting
  846. a worldview into your mind;
  847. people that end up
    being a worldly example;
  848. people that do things
  849. (incomplete thought).
  850. Listen, there was a reason why
  851. way before movies,
  852. way before TV, way before Internet,
  853. you put people out of the church.
  854. Anybody remember what
    one of those reasons was?
  855. A little leaven leavens the whole lump?
  856. It's amazing how now
  857. with all of our electronic apparatuses,
  858. we allow people to influence us
  859. that church discipline was meant
  860. to eradicate from our lives,
  861. or right decisions about companionship
  862. were meant to eradicate from our lives.
  863. You start asking yourself:
  864. do you think you can
    sit in front of a movie
  865. with sex, a horror movie,
  866. with graphic language, God defamed,
  867. absolutely un-Christian values,
  868. worldly perspectives,
  869. and that you're going to be uninfluenced?
  870. Is that the way you learn Christ?
  871. Now, here's what I learn from Christ,
  872. that if I have the opportunity

  873. to find people like that
  874. and to see to be the
    one that's the aggressor;
  875. to seek to be the one on the offensive;
  876. to seek to be the one who goes to the sick
  877. bringing the message of the doctor,
  878. then that's good.
  879. Eating with publicans and sinners,
  880. tax collectors - that's good;
  881. when we're the one setting the agenda;
  882. when we're going in to bring light.
  883. But you know the problem is
  884. TV's, movie screens, Internet -
  885. Internet I guess you have some ability
  886. to communicate back and forth,
  887. but typically you don't have that.
  888. You don't go to the movie to positively
  889. influence the actors.
  890. (Incomplete thought).
  891. Many of you know,
  892. every Sunday afternoon, I'm watching -
  893. I've got all ten "Dispatches
    from the Front" in here,
  894. and I just go through them.
  895. It keeps my missionary juices flowing.
  896. Very often, Friday nights,
  897. I love to watch the Q&A times.
  898. Ligonier, oftentimes Sproul, MacArthur,
  899. different men.
  900. There's things that can be
  901. tremendously profitable.
  902. There can be things that can be
  903. tremendously profitable
  904. to bring the family together.
  905. You can watch certain
    documentaries on nature
  906. and you can see God's handiwork
  907. and get a perspective on
    some things in this world
  908. that just blow your mind
  909. and cause you to
    think bigger views of God.
  910. But you see, you're evaluating
  911. everything from that perspective.
  912. Is this going to cause me to worship God?
  913. To see God as bigger?
  914. Is this going to cause
    me to walk more holy?
  915. Is this going to cause
    me to learn of Christ?
  916. Is this going to somehow
    help me in my run?
  917. Or is this going to impact
    my joy in the Holy Spirit?
  918. This idea, brethren, what's permissible?

  919. Oh, if you've been saved
  920. by the blood of Christ,
  921. you can't get away from it.
  922. It's like every book in our Bible
  923. just calls us to recognize,
  924. we ought to be living on another plane.
  925. And we've got the power to live
  926. on that higher plane.
  927. This idea of just walking around
  928. all the time being guided by
  929. a list of rules.
  930. You don't need a list of rules
  931. for the refrigerator.
  932. No more than if you get married,
  933. you need a list of rules
  934. how to treat your wife.
  935. "Don't beat your wife.
  936. Kiss wife in morning.
  937. Say goodbye when you leave."
  938. Your wife would be appalled at that.
  939. Listen, don't try to
    construct God differently.
  940. God created relationships
    between man and woman -
  941. between us as a reflection
  942. of a greater relationship.
  943. He wants our heart.
  944. He wants our passions.
  945. He wants us to do things from love.
  946. He wants us to be spontaneous.
  947. It doesn't mean there
    isn't a place for thinking.
  948. It doesn't mean there isn't a
    place for studying Scripture.
  949. It doesn't mean there isn't a place
  950. to let the light of Scripture shine
  951. and to be moved and motivated
  952. by the Spirit of God through it.
  953. But brethren, living a life
  954. where righteousness becomes
  955. the spontaneous reaction
  956. and imitating Christ
  957. and walking because we love
  958. and we delight in Him.
  959. We appreciate our friendship,
  960. our relationship with Him.
  961. You read that - 1 John -
  962. we're walking in the light
  963. and we have fellowship.
  964. When you get to the place where you
  965. appreciate fellowship and you want to fast
  966. not because there's a law;
  967. not because Jesus said,
  968. "When you fast..." that means it's a law.
  969. Got to do the law.
  970. When the church fasts
    quarterly, got to do it.
  971. No, it's when you look and you say,
  972. "Lord, I just want to
    clear all the food out,
  973. because I need You, Lord.
  974. I need You.
  975. I feel like there is a dryness.
  976. I feel like a shadow has come between us.
  977. Lord, I want to quicken...
  978. Lord, I want You to draw near."
  979. Brethren, you know,
  980. that is what pleases the Lord.
  981. When it's all mechanical,
  982. when it's all rule keeping,
  983. that is not pleasing to Him.
  984. That is ugly religion.
  985. That is legalism.
  986. Legalists are always concerned
  987. with the rules - not with God;
  988. not with loving their fellow man.
  989. They're concerned with the rules.
  990. Show me the rule to keep.
  991. Rule keeping, rule keeping, rule keeping.
  992. Brethren, I know that there are laws

  993. in Scripture.
  994. I know that.
  995. But you know as well as I do,
  996. if you just let your mind go,
  997. you know -
  998. Jesus came along and He said,
  999. look, I know you had a law
  1000. that said not to commit adultery.
  1001. But look, it's way beyond that.
  1002. It's way beyond that.
    It's learning of Jesus.
  1003. How do you learn Jesus?

  1004. Oh, He was pure.
  1005. He wasn't rude to women.
  1006. He was kind to them.
  1007. He treated them with
    the utmost of respect.
  1008. He revealed Himself to Mary first
  1009. when He was risen.
  1010. There He was - she thought
    He was the gardener.
  1011. They were gathered around the cross.
  1012. He took care of His mother.
  1013. "John, behold your mother."
  1014. You just watch the way
    He dealt with women.
  1015. It's not a rule.
  1016. It's not constantly living a rule.
  1017. Oh, if I look at this,
  1018. and I'm living in fear of the penalty.
  1019. See, slaves live in fear of the penalty
  1020. all the time.
  1021. It's purity.
  1022. Fleeing youthful lusts.
  1023. It's wanting to stay pure.
  1024. It's wanting to be holy.
  1025. It's not wanting these things
  1026. to impact my life,
  1027. because I don't want to lose sight
  1028. of God's face.
  1029. I don't want to lose power.
  1030. There is a power to do good.
  1031. There's an enabling.
  1032. The Spirit of God quickens us.
  1033. The Spirit of God gives gifts.
  1034. The Spirit of God gives grace.
  1035. The Spirit of God empowers us.
  1036. I don't want to lose that.
  1037. Quenching the Spirit.

  1038. You've got grieving the Spirit -
  1039. that's the idea of a
    person that's grieved.
  1040. That's more of the relationship.
  1041. Quenching is more of the power,
  1042. the fire, the light.
  1043. I don't want that.
  1044. And brethren, you know,
  1045. when we fail, when we fall,
  1046. when we do things,
  1047. He's faithful and just to forgive us.
  1048. Scripture says so.
  1049. And there's a place to run back to Him
  1050. and not to hesitate.
  1051. (Incomplete thought).
  1052. Brethren, we need to live
  1053. in the reality of that.
  1054. That we're justified
  1055. and that we have free access to Him
  1056. all the time.
  1057. And we can run back.
  1058. But we know that grievance
  1059. in our own heart of having offended Him,
  1060. losing sight of Him.
  1061. You now what Peter went through
  1062. after denying the Lord.
  1063. And seasons, if we quench the Spirit,
  1064. we can't find Him.
  1065. You remember how it was with Christian

  1066. when he lost his scroll?
  1067. He's just cursing himself.
  1068. Ugh! I had to walk the
    same ground three times
  1069. that I only needed to walk once.
  1070. Why? Because of his foolishness.
  1071. He went to sleep there
  1072. at the top of the hill of difficulty
  1073. at the stile that was made
  1074. for the rest of the weary pilgrim.
  1075. But he fell asleep there.
  1076. He had to walk the same
    ground three times.
  1077. See, it's living with a bigger picture.
  1078. I don't want to keep walking
  1079. the same ground over and over.
  1080. I don't want to fall backwards.
  1081. I don't want to lose ground.
  1082. I don't want to lose His smile.
  1083. I don't want to lose His fellowship.
  1084. I don't to lose a sense of His love.
  1085. I don't want to lose any of His power.
  1086. I don't want that.
  1087. I want righteousness.
  1088. I want it to be overflowing.
  1089. I want to be moving upward
    and upward and upward.
  1090. I want to see Him more.
  1091. Oh, that I might know Him.
  1092. Driven like that.
  1093. As I just mentioned on Sunday,
  1094. living like the psalmist
  1095. with a heart that pants after God
  1096. like the deer is panting after the water.
  1097. You see, when we live like that,
  1098. if you look up,
  1099. eyeball to eyeball with God,
  1100. I just have to believe,
  1101. people who can listen
    to foul, filthy music
  1102. and watch dirtbag movies,
  1103. are they on their knees before they go?
  1104. Are they asking the Lord,
  1105. "Help and guide me to do
    the most holy things today?"
  1106. "Help me to be like Evangeline Booth."
  1107. "Help me to look for opportunities
  1108. where I can love somebody;
  1109. where I can plant a kiss."
  1110. Oh, to have the grace to know
  1111. when to kiss a woman on the cheek
  1112. and when it's inappropriate.
  1113. And what's the kindest thing to do?
  1114. And to have the right words to speak?
  1115. My wife said when we got in a discussion
  1116. about this, she said, you know what?
  1117. She said, I think that there are
  1118. just some of God's people
  1119. who don't know what it's like
  1120. to actually have holiness in their life
  1121. and live in the power of that.
  1122. I'm probably not saying it
    exactly how she said it.
  1123. But she said it something like that.
  1124. And I think there's a reality there.
  1125. I think we have some -
  1126. whether they're just professing Christians
  1127. or whether they're just immature ones,
  1128. they just don't know what it is
  1129. to really experience the power of God
  1130. that comes with a truly holy life -
  1131. a consistently holy life.
  1132. It's like once you've tasted
  1133. certain things in the Christian life,
  1134. once you've tasted that the Lord is good,
  1135. you don't want to go back.
  1136. You don't want to go back.
  1137. You don't only not want to go back
  1138. to how it was when you were lost,
  1139. you don't want to go back to how it was
  1140. when you were a less mature Christian.
  1141. You want more.
  1142. Comments?