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Walking in the Favor of the Lord
By Pastor Jerry C. Vargo – Part Four
"FAVOR is the special affection of God toward you that releases an influence on you, so that others are inclined to like you, or to cooperate with you."
- Lance Wallnau
A. I suspect that this definition is limited in scope, as I’m sure Lance Wallnau would agree.
B. There is so much to this subject that to limit it to this quote would be foolish.
C. Yet, it does seem to compress into one statement the heart of FAVOR.
D. Today, if you will bear with me, I possess a bag of golden nuggets related to FAVOR.
E. If my Bible College professors could hear this message, I’d get in a lot of trouble because I want to make 7 observations related to FAVOR that may or may not interrelate. So forgive me in advance.
F. I intend on only spending just a brief time on each point…so do not worry!
1. Favor comes to those who do what is right!
1 Peter 2:19-20
"For this finds favor, if for the sake of conscience toward God a man bears up under sorrows when suffering unjustly. For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God."
A. Note: Conscience toward God! Suffering unjustly! Doing what is right in patience!
If you do something wrong at work and are caught…and you handle that well…God says, "What credit is there to that?"
BUT…if you live right at work…and others treat you wrong…and you handle that well…God says: "This finds FAVOR with God."
2. When FAVOR is upon us, the works of our hands are confirmed!
"…let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us; and do confirm for us the work of our hands; Yes, confirm the work of our hands."
A. To have the works of our hands confirmed in Hebrew means to be directed and steadfast morally, or to be prepared and ready.
B. When FAVOR is upon us that is literally what happens.
3. Speaking the Truth Brings FAVOR!
"He who rebukes a man will afterward find more favor than he who flatters with the tongue."
A. We often think of rebuke as harsh…but that is NOT God’s way. Even rebuke must be tempered with love:
"...but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him, who is the head, even Christ…"
B. Notice also the warning in this verse: Flattery will not bring you FAVOR.
C. Flattery is really the way of the adulterer. Why is flattery like the sin of adultery?
Well, it’s like the man who has eyed a woman or a woman has eyed a man…what do they do? They flatter! What is flattery? Excessive praise! HOWEVER, this is the motive of self-interest. The praise is for receiving what they want…to satisfy their sexual desires.