We detest the idea that we are pitiful and yet the Bible is clear that man in his best state is altogether vanity (which means worthless).
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Service Notes For Sunday South Carolina 2020-09-27
- Steve Atherton
- Romans 8:28, Romans 1:17, Galatians 3:11, Hebrews 10:38, 2 Corinthians 5:6-7, Luke 13:10-14, Numbers 12:3, James 1:21, Psalm 39:5
- Most of our struggles are with unbelief. Romans 8:28, by contrast, works for those that “know” rather than “wonder” (which is another word for doubt) whether God is with them, His promises true, etc…
- The reason we doubt is because our carnal man and our carnal mind does not believe those things that we experience with our five natural senses and we do not experience God (or the spiritual realm) with our natural senses.
- We can often see the effects of the spiritual realm, like with the woman who was bent over because she was afflicted with a spirit of infirmity for eighteen years until she was loosed, or the lepers who were cleansed of their leprosy. Luke 13:10-14, Matthew 8:2-3 and Mark 1:40-42.
- We are to live by faith, rather than by sight. This is completely contrary to our carnal man/mind. See Romans 1:17, Galatians 3:11, Hebrews 10:38 and 2 Corinthians 5:6-7.
- Man’s rule (including most of us), in contrast to Romans 8:28, is that those things we like are good. This is why we find it hard to live by Romans 8:28’s admonition that all things work together for good, to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.
- Another one of man’s rules, is that we like (in our minds often used interchangeably with love) those that do those things which are pleasing to us. Pursuant to this standard, God often does not measure up, let alone our siblings, spouses, children, employers, governments, etc…
- Therefore the reason why we struggle to walk in Romans 8:28 is because we judge things by the wrong standard. We judge something as good or not based upon whether we like it or not, rather than by God’s Word.
- Meekness, which Moses had above all men (Number 12:3), by contrast enables us to receive and walk in the engrafted Word (James 1:21). To operate in meekness, you need to have a profound understanding of your own pitifulness (or incapacities). To most of us, we absolutely detest the idea that we are pitiful and yet the Bible is clear that man in his best state is altogether vanity (which means worthless). Psalm 39:5.
- If we want to walk in the Lord, like those we read about in the Scripture (people like Moses, Joshua, Elijah, Elisha, Jesus, Peter, Paul, etc…), then we need to acknowledge the truth about ourselves (we’re pitiful and in need of help) and choose to walk by faith in what God’s Word says, rather than those standards we have relied upon throughout our lives.
- Then, He can set us free to walk just like the men and women we read about in the Scripture. That is truly what it is to be a Christian (i.e. Christ-like). Then we will be found faithful (which means full of faith) servants who enter into Heaven. Then we will know and experience what Romans 8:28 is talking about when it says that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose. Is that what you want?