Summary: This sermon stresses why we should choose to inspire others to Christ. This is more than an outline but it is not the full text.
Why Choose to Inspire
Scripture Text: Daniel 1-3
August 28, 2011 Thomas A. Gaskill
Today there are many people:
doubtful of the existence of God
confused about the true God
blinded by the ways of the world
surrounded with despair in the world
The top 10 addictions verify these statements:
Alcohol, smoking, drugs, gambling, food, video games, internet, sexual, shopping, work
People succumb to these addictions in search of peace and fulfillment; but fail to realize either one. It is a sad, circular, dangerous, and harmful plight. These loved ones are searching for freedom, but are becoming more enslaved.
Listen to some of these statistics found online:
In the U.S. the number of smokers is about one in five adults.
Every year, tobacco use kills more Americans than World War II and the Vietnam War combined. Tobacco related illnesses kill 440,000 US citizens per year.
Many diseases are linked to tobacco and nicotine: cardiovascular disease, stroke, lung cancer, cancer of the kidney, cancer of the larynx and neck, mouth cancer and breast cancer
Approximately 70% of smokers want to quit. About 40% try to quit every year.
About one in five high school students smoke.
About half of those who start smoking as an adolescent will continue to smoke for the next 15 to 20 years.
The cigarette industry spends about 34 million dollars a day on advertising and promotion (2006).
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 64% of Americans drink alcohol, with 50% ‘regular drinkers’.
The consequences of this are 22,073 alcohol caused deaths a year (2006) – these are deaths unrelated to accidents, suicides or homicides. About half of these deaths are from liver disease from alcoholism.
Preliminary data for 2009 from the CDC shows the highest percentage in a decade measured for adults who have consumed more than 5 drinks a day (23%). This may reflect the economic downturn.
Males lead females in consumption, and the highest use occurs in the 18 to 24 year-old group.
Alcohol is a poison; it can kill either by way of long-term damage, or acutely. In the acute poisoning, alcohol alone can be fatal, or it can kill when combined with other drugs.
One disturbing trend is that the number of women arrested has increased 30% since 1998, although men still account for the majority of arrests (six to one).
Problem gambling and suicide
One of the scariest statistics is reported by the Oklahoma Association for Gambling Addiction Awareness: “A survey of Gamblers Anonymous members in the United States found that 48 percent had considered suicide and 13 percent had attempted it.”
The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reports that by age 18, almost 12% of all young people are illicit drug users. And they go on to state, it is generally accepted that chemical dependency, along with associated mental health disorders, has become one of the most severe health and social problems facing the US.