Choosing A Master
Choosing A Master
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
One of our favorite worship songs at Harvest is There is power in the Name of Jesus, to break every chain. The last part of that worship song is "I hear those chains falling!" Life at times becomes torment when a thought becomes an act, and an act becomes a habit, and then the habit becomes an addiction. With all the craziness that is in this post-modern culture, it seems that people are so addicted to drama! Don't believe it? Just read a few of the sordid details people post on FB!
The shew of their countenance doth witness against them; and they declare their sin as Sodom, they hide it not. Woe unto their soul! for they have rewarded evil unto themselves.
Sin that at one time was committed in secret, has now become so public that we make movies, television sitcoms, and commercial ads on billboards, glorifying a lifestyle that God calls sinful and corrupt. A liberal, ungodly media uses deceptive journalism, trying to get their godless message across to a deaf and blind people. Already drunk on the cares of this world, our population has been so duped and cleverly chloroformed by a satanic deception so strong that Jesus described them:
He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them. S
Sin that at one time caused the modest to blush, has now become their glory. Sin has made its way out of the back alleys and out onto the broadway for all to see.
This culture has many worshippers! They worship at the altars of the god of this world, but they know little about the diabolical plan he has for them. This world's god is one who
enslaves people to cruel bondage and emotional as well as physical suffering and pain.
C = CHOICES
I am the presently the result of the choices I have made in my life. Because of the the bad choices, I find myself today in cruel chains of bondage. It’s a dark place and my bad judgment put me here. But that chain can be broken! How? By making a better choice!
1. Moses chose to be numbered with God's people.
2. Ruth chose to leave her past and become a part of God's plan.
3. Jonah decided to go to Ninevah and be obedient.
4. Paul (called himself a chief sinner) chose to become obedient to the heavenly vision.
H = HABITS
Because of my emotional pain, you may have picked up some habits in your life that bring you a lot of emotional pain. Your potty mouth, and filthy language and vulgar talk may seem cool to your friends, but a reproach to yourself and your family. Alcohol and recreational drugs may be what popular people are doing, but no matter how charming those little habits seem to be, God says you are unwise, deceived, and poisoning yourself on their toxicity.
12. Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:
13. Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
14. In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
But that chain can be broken! How?
A = AFFLUENCE
Some of you sitting here today are so in bondage to the things of this life. You are so bound up in a worldly system that judges people by how you look, what you drive, clothes you wear, the appraisal of the house you live in, and the size of your bank account. You are a man pleaser! A control freak As a slave to that mindset you work long hours, absent from home and family, a stranger to your wife and kids. debt, You find yourself strapped with debt, trying to get ahead, only to find out that the more you get, the more you want. You are so miserable and don't know why! But that chain can be broken! How? By realizing that the things of this world can never compare to the peace and joy that Jesus gives. Change your focus!
I = IDENTITY
You may think, after all I have been through in this life, I sometimes look in the mirror and wonder who that person is. I have anger issues. I hold grudges. I'm stubborn and self-serving. I have very little patience with others, even my own family. I've developed a potty mouth. I do and say things that, when confronted, I say, "that's not me, you know I would never do that." It seems that I am held captive by power that takes me to places I don't want to go and do things I didn't ever think I would do. I just feel so out of control right now. But that chain can be broken! How? You must change the things that define you. You've got to quit looking back!
And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.
You cannot be unequally yoked together!
“Thou shalt not plow with an ox and an ass together"
Because of Adam's sin, all of us were born with a chain of sin and a fleshly urge to go our own way. We were born in sin, and out of fellowship with our Creator God. But that chain can be
But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you.
THE CHAIN OF CHRISTIAN SERVICE
The happiest book of the Bible, Philippians, was a prison epistle! Paul wrote about freedom when he was in total lockdown. Sometimes the toughest circumstance you find yourself in is when God is doing the most through you. When you feel limited, God has you in the right place to trust HIM for a way of escape, and Paul knows escape!
II Corinthians 11:31-33
31 The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is blessed for evermore, knoweth that I lie not.
32 In Damascus, the governor under Aretas the king kept the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desirous to apprehend me:
33 And through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and escaped his hands.
I hear the testimony of his life of service to God, with all the hazardous experiences of shipwreck, beatings, and imprisonment. But when asked how did you make it thru all of that, He would answer, "I'm kept by the Holy Ghost!”
I Tim. 1:14-177
14 That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.
15 This thou knowest, that all they which are in Asia be turned away from me; of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes.
16 The Lord give mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain.
It’s been many years since God knocked him off his donkey. Blinded him, so that he could not see. He is now past the place of caring what men think about him. They cannot dissuade him nor cause him to miss God's will because of their opinion of him. And he reflects upon the success of the message he preaches.
12 But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the gospel,
13 so that it has become evident to the whole palace guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in Christ;
14 and most of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my chains, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.
15 Some indeed preach Christ even from envy and strife, and some also from good will:
16 The former preach Christ from selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my chains;
17 but the latter out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel.
18 What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is preached; and in this, I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice.
19 For I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayer and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,
20 according to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.
21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
22 But if I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell.
23 For I am hard pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better.
24 Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you.
25 And being confident of this, I know that I shall remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy of faith,
26 that your rejoicing for me may be more abundant in Jesus Christ by my coming to you again.