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Summary: part 2 of Avoiding the comparison traps of life. we cannot compare ourselves to each others faults or successes. we must compare ourselves to what the Lord desires for our lives.

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AVOIDING THE COMPARISON TRAP (SPIRITUALLY)

LUKE 18;9-14

INTRO-

THIS MORNING WE ARE AGAIN GOING TO BE LOOKING AT THE COMPARISON TRAP. THIS TIME SPIRITUALLY. INSTEAD OF LOOKING AT OUR LIVES OF WHERE THE LORD WANTS US TO BE, WE LOOK AT OTHERS AND SAY WE ARE NOT AS BAD AS “THAT “ PERSON OR “THOSE PEOPLE”

THERE IS GREAT DANGER WHEN WE FEEL WE HAVE ARRIVED SPIRITUALLY OR WHEN WE COMPARE OURSELVES TO ANYTHING OR ANYONE OTHER THAN CHRIST.

LUKE 18 BEGINS WITH A PARABLE ON PRAYER. PERSISTENT PRAYER AND THE CORRELATION THAT GOD WILL BRING JUSTICE AND HEAR THE PRAYERS OF HIS PEOPLE.

LUKE 18:9-14 TALKS ABOUT 2 DIFFERENT APPROACHES TO SPEAKING TO GOD.

LUKE 18:9-14 READ

THE PHARISEE’S DURING JESUS TIME WOULD OF BEEN CONSIDERED THE LEADERS OF THE DAY. THEY WERE SUPER RELIGIOUS, EXTREMELY CAREFUL TO FULFILL THE LAW. THE TAX COLLECTOR WAS THE BOTTOM OF THE FOOD CHAIN. HIRED BY THE ROMAN GOVERNMENT, THEY CHARGED RIDICULOUS TAXES AND WERE ABLE TO KEEP MOST OF THE MONEY. EVERYONE HATED THE TAX COLLECTOR EXCEPT THE ROMAN GOVERNMENT. IT IS JUST LIKE THE LORD TO MAKE THE GOOD GUY THE BAD GUY AND THE BAD GUY THE GOOD GUY BY THE WORLD’S STANDARDS. LET ME GIVE YOU AN ILLUSTRATION I FOUND BY DR. DAVID DYKES ON SERMON CENTRAL. I CHANGED IT A LITTLE TO FIT US NAZARENES

ILLUSTRATION-

THE PARABLE OF THE DEACON AND THE DRUG DEALER.

AS NAZARENE BOB WALKED INTO CHURCH ONE SUNDAY MORNING, HE WAS DISGUSTED TO SEE LARRY LOWLIFE THERE, FOR LARRY WAS A DRUG DEALER WHO HAD JUST GOTTEN OUT OF JAIL. BOB WARNED SOME OF THE USHERS TO KEEP A CLOSE EYE ON LARRY BECAUSE HE WAS A NO-GOOD CROOK. BEFORE THE OFFERING, IT WAS BOB’S TIME TO PRAY. HE WALKED UP PROUDLY TO THE MICROPHONE AND BEGAN TO PRAY USING HIS RELIGIOUS TONE OF VOICE. “HEAVENLY FATHER, I THANK THEE I’VE BEEN DEACON IN THIS CHURCH FOR TWENTY YEARS. I EVEN REMEMBER WHEN I BUILT THIS BUILDING USING MY OWN TWO HANDS. AND I THANK THEE THAT I HAVEN’T MISSED A SINGLE SUNDAY FOR OVER TEN YEARS, THERE WERE TIMES , O LORD, WHEN I WAS SICK, BUT I CAME ANYWAY. AND FATHER, THOU KNOWEST I USED TO SING IN THE CHOIR, UNTIL I WAS PERSECUTED BY THE SONG LEADER WHO WOULDN’T SING MY STYLE OF MUSIC- BUT I CAN ENDURE PERSECUTION JUST LIKE THOU DIDEST. THOU HAST BLESSED ME FINANCIALLY SO I’VE BEEN ABLE TO GIVE YOU MUCH MORE THAN THE TEN PERCENT . I THANK THEE THAT I’M MORALLY PURE FOR I DON’T DRINK, AND I DON’T CUSS ON SUNDAYS, AND I DON’T SMOKE UNFILTERED CIGARETTES AND I DON’T USE DRUGS OR SELL THEM-LIKE SOMEONE WHO IS AMONG US TODAY. LORD, WE NEED MORE PEOPLE JUST LIKE ME IN OUR CHURCH. AND LORD, HELP EVERYONE TO COME OUT TOMORROW NIGHT AT 7 P.M. AT OAK PARK FIELD TO WATCH OUR CHURCH SOFTBALL TEAM BEAT THE METHODISTS AGAIN AND BLESS THE GIFT AND THE GIVER IN JESUS NAME. AMEN.

EXTREME? YES. BUT THAT IS SOME PEOPLE’S IDEA OF A PRAYER.

QUESTION- WHY DID YOU COME THIS MORNING?

I CAME TO WORSHIP THE LORD CAN YOU DO THAT AT HOME? YES

I CAME TO SEEK ANSWERS FROM THE LORD CAN YOU DO THAT AT HOME? YES

I CAME TO BE WITH PEOPLE OF LIKE MINDED FAITH CAN YOU DO THAT AT HOME? NO YOU CAN NOT I LEAD THE PARADE THAT WE NEED TO BE IN CHURCH..YOUR OWN CHURCH.


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