Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: To Draw nigh to Christ is our Choice

Close Don’t Count

James 4:8.

The story is told of a king in Africa who had a close friend with whom he grew up. The friend had a habit of looking at every situation that ever occurred in his life (positive or negative) and remarking, "This is good!" One day the king and his friend were out on a hunting expedition. The friend would load and prepare the guns for the king. The friend had apparently done something wrong in preparing one of the guns, for after taking the gun from his friend, the king fired it and his thumb was blown off. Examining the situation, the friend remarked as usual, "This is good!" To which the king replied, "No, this is not good!" and proceeded to send his friend to jail. About a year later, the king was hunting in an area that he should have known to stay clear of. Cannibals captured him and took him to their village. They tied his hands, stacked some wood, set up a stake and bound him to the stake. As they came near to set fire to the wood, they noticed that the king was missing a thumb. Being superstitious, they never ate anyone who was less than whole. So untying the king, they sent him on his way. As he returned home, he was reminded of the event that had taken his thumb and felt remorse for his treatment of his friend. He went immediately to the jail to speak with his friend. "You were right," he said, "it was good that my thumb was blown off." And he proceeded to tell the friend all that had just happened. "And so, I am very sorry for sending you to jail for so long. It was bad for me to do this." "No," his friend replied, "This is good!" "What do you mean, ’This is good’? How could it be good that I sent my friend to jail for a year?" "If I had not been in jail, I would have been with you."

I. Our Position Draw nigh to God

Our position is just like Sydney Short

this verse implies that we aren’t as close to God as we should be.

Romans 3: 23. For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Psalms 14: 2. The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see

if there were any that did understand, and seek God.3. They are all

gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that

doeth good, no, not one. may-be you’re thinking, you don’t know me

preacher. I’m a good person. I’m not that bad. I thought you were

talking about me there for a minute.

Jeremiah 17: 9. The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who

can know it?

II. God’s Power and he will draw nigh to you.

Matt 19:24. And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the

eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

25. When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed,

saying, Who then can be saved? 26. But Jesus beheld them, and said

unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are

possible. If your baby gets dirty, you can give a baby soap, water

and those fu-fu things to scrup with but if you leave it up to them,

guess what, all you’ll have if a wet dirty baby.

Proverbs 28: 18. Whoso walketh uprightly shall be saved: but he that is perverse

in his ways shall fall at once.

III. The World’s Privilege Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye

double minded.

There was a barber in a small local town who had been the only

barber in town for years. Everyone went to this barber to get their

hair cut. Then, one day a big hair salon franchise came to town and

opened up shop. They advertised, “All Haircuts for $3.00” Slowly,

the barber’s business began to dwindle. He just couldn’t compete. In

a last ditch effort to save his business, he hired a business consultant.

The consultant spent a day pouring over the barber’s books asking

many questions. At the end of the day the barber asked the

consultant, “So what do you think ? Should I close up shop ?” The

consultant said, “Not yet. I’ll be back tomorrow.” The next day the

consultant showed up with a huge banner that he hung in front of the

barber shop that said, “We Fix $3.00 Haircuts!”

That’s what the world has done, sold out for a cheap price. And then

we try to fix ourselves. The sad thing is with the right meds. We are

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