Summary: God’s commandments are "for our good" -- not to keep us from fun, but to keep us from pain. This sermon is on Commandment #1. *HANDOUT INCLUDED*
For a CD of over 100 of sermons by Darrell Stetler II (most complete with handouts), please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Preventing Unnecessary Pain In Your Life
There are different kinds of pain that come into our lives.
1. Inevitable Pain: comes into our lives just because they are lives.
- You learn to walk, and you’re going to fall down.
- You eat, and you’re going to get sick sooner or later.
- Hurricanes hit the gulf coast.
2. Victim pain: comes into our lives because others do wrong.
- Someone drinks and drives, and someone is killed or crippled.
- Someone flies a plane into a building and many people die.
- Someone abuses/rapes, and people have scars forever.
3. Growing pain: comes into our lives to make us more like Jesus.
- “Pain with a purpose”
- Some sickness. (We talked about this last week.)
- Sometimes emotional pain of hurts and hangups.
Nothing can keep you out of these kinds of pain. But some pain is not like that at all. There’s a fourth category, and that’s what this series is about.
4. Unnecessary pain: comes into our lives because of mistakes and sins. (Mistakes and sins are not the same thing. Leaving your car door unlocked is a mistake. Disobeying a command of God written in the Bible is a sin. See 1 John 3:4)
How many of you have ever heard someone ask “Why did this happen?” How many of you have heard that question and known EXACTLY why it happened, and it was that person’s fault? Have you ever thought "I could tell you, if you’d listen...?"
Too often, people ask “Why?” when the answer is very clear. They were playing “Russian Roulette” with sin and lost.
With some kinds of pain, God sits in heaven, watches us hurting and sighs. . . “They could have stopped that from happening!”
Guess what the #1 response to that one was?
“When they’re hurting themselves and everyone around them?”
Maybe you’ve lived with that person. Maybe you ARE that person!
Let me take a little survey: How many of you would say, “Darrell, if you could teach me principles of how to stay away from that pain, I’d love to learn them and apply them to my life!” *HANDS*
Well, good, because that’s what we’re going to do. You’ve got a lot of life ahead of you, and I want to share some principles with you that will keep you out of that 4th area of pain.
Let me say something right up front here: These sermons are for the believers who are here. If you’re not a believer, we want to respect you and give you the right to choose on YOUR timetable whether you want to be an all-out follower of Jesus Christ. But I want to give you the lowdown ahead of time – this is what you’re getting into. If you like the sound of it, great! Join up and take the journey with us. If not, I respect your right to make that decision, and I hope you’ll come back and hear the rest of what the Bible has to say.
Let’s begin with this Scripture:
Deuteronomy 10:12 "And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments of the LORD and His statutes which I command you today for your good?”
Now, circle the words FOR YOUR GOOD. That tells us something. First of all, God is not a tyrant in the sky. . . he’s not doing this just because he’s mean, or he doesn’t want you to have fun. He’s doing it because he knows that it is best for you.
God’s commands are not fences to keep you from fun.
God’s commands are fences to keep you from pain.
God knows what’s best, because he set up the universe with certain laws. Live within those laws, you live with very little unnecessary pain. Live outside them, and you mess up your life but good.
Let me give you some examples:
> If you jump off a 2 story building and shatter the bones in your legs, should you ask, “Why did God let this happen to me?” NO. You just didn’t live within the law that God set up.
> If you drive drunk, and wreck your car, should you ask “Why did God let this happen?” NO. You didn’t live within the laws that God set up.