Summary: I have taken some of my mistakes, & added some of yours - shaken them all together - & have reached the conclusion that there are at least 4 major categories of mistakes, & all 4 of them are found in the Bible. (PowerPoint Available -#152)
RIDGE CHAPEL, KANSAS, OK
(Powerpoint slides for this sermon are available at no charge. Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your request - #152.)
INTRO: Have you ever heard someone say, "That’s the first mistake I’ve made today?" Or, someone who is a little arrogant might say, "That’s the first mistake I made this year." And, of course, someone who is really obnoxious would say, "Well, that’s the first mistake I’ve ever made."
We tend to joke about our mistakes because we all make mistakes! We might make them because we have poor information, or because we have bad judgment, or just because we are making the wrong choices.
Mistakes aren’t necessarily sin, but they can become sin, because of the domino effect. One mistake often leads to another as we try to excuse or cover up our mistakes. Soon we are getting in deeper & deeper, & a chain reaction has begun.
Now, I am not an expert in most things, but I am very nearly an expert when it comes to mistakes. I have made enough mistakes in my lifetime to pretty much make me an expert. Maybe you have too!
So this morning I have taken some of my mistakes, & added some of yours mixed them all together & have reached the conclusion that there are at least 4 major categories of mistakes, & all 4 of them are found in the Bible. Listen carefully, & I think we will see ourselves in each of these 4 areas.
I. PANIC PROMPTED MISTAKES
A. First, there are panic prompted mistakes mistakes that are made because we are in too great a hurry, or because we are afraid that something is going to happen. So we take quick action to try to keep it from happening.
We are worried about something & we are hesitant about letting God take control. So we handle it ourselves & the result is that we make mistakes.
ILL. You remember the story of Abraham. God told Abraham to leave his homeland & go to a land that God would show him, where he & his family would be greatly blessed. Abraham would become the father of a great nation, & all the nations of the earth would be blessed through him.
When Abraham finally got there he built an altar to God, & God told him, "This is the land I promised you. Stay here, & don’t leave this land."
Time passes, & Genesis 12:10 tells us, "Now there was a famine in the land, & Abram went down to Egypt to live there for a while, because the famine was severe."
Now that is a panic prompted mistake. Abraham had promised God that he would stay put. But when a famine arose, Abraham was afraid that he & his family would starve.
So he panicked & packed his bags & family & moved down to Egypt. The first domino fell.
The 2nd domino is found in vs’s 11-13, "As he was about to enter Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai, ’I know what a beautiful woman you are. When the Egyptians see you, they will say, ’This is his wife.’ Then they will kill me but will let you live.
“Say that you are my sister, so that I will be treated well for your sake & my life will be spared because of you."
That was mistake #2, & the dominoes are beginning to fall. One mistake led to another, & the first thing you know Abraham & Sarai were in a dangerous situation in Egypt, & only the direct intervention of God saved them.
B. Now let’s bring it down to today. People make panic prompted mistakes, & they make them primarily in two areas of life. First, in the area of romance, & second, in the area of finance.
1. How many times have we met people nearing the mystical age of 30, who haven’t met that "right someone" yet, & they are about to panic? "I am going to be a bachelor, or old maid the rest of my life. No one will ever marry me!"
So, in panic, they grab the first one they find. They get married, or they throw away their morals in the hope of catching someone, anyone. The result is a domino chain reaction that makes the situation worse, & not better.
I know people who have been there. They made mistakes back when they were 20 or 30, & now they wish they could go back & do it right. Oftentimes in the area of romance, whether it is 20, 30, or 50, people panic.
2. It can happen in the area of our finances, too. It is so easy today to get into a financial bind. MasterCard works. Visa works. Stores urge us to use their "easy payment" plans.