Summary: What really matters?
God’s Priorities for You
Sermon by: Rick Crandall
McClendon Baptist Church, West Monroe, LA
Jan. 16, 2005
*What really matters?
-This week I watched part of a documentary about the crash of a Concorde jet in France.
*Over 100 people died, and it all started because of a strip of metal that had fallen on the runway.
*It was only 16 inches long.
-I could hold it here in my hand.
*Sometimes it’s hard for us to see what really matters, but God knows.
-God knows what’s most important in your life & mine.
*So let’s look into the Word of God this morning & see some of the greatest priorities He has for our lives.
1. God wants you to be happy.
-(This is surely one of His priorities & we see this in vs. 1-3.)
*God wants you to be happy.
-I’m not talking about the surface, selfish happiness the world is grasping for, but deep, abiding joy.
*The world can’t give it & the world can’t take it away, but Jesus can give us joy, and God wants us to have it.
1-So He gives us a picture of a happy life in vs. 2:
*It’s a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
-A happy life is a quiet & peaceful life, not marked by storms & turbulence, but by tranquility.
*Peace in your heart & peace in your home...
-That’s what God wants for you.
*But a happy life is also Godly & honest...
-Not burdened with guilt, but blessed by goodness.
*A life where integrity blossoms, while our hypocrisy withers away.
-God wants us to be living in all godliness and honesty, so we don’t want to be half-hearted about our honesty.
*Like Dennis the Menace was when he gave some advice to his friend Joey.
-Dennis caught Joey trying to get a paper out of the machine without paying.
*And he said: -"Wait, Joey!
-First you have to put the money in...
-Then you can get all the papers you want." (1)
*We can do better than that!
-And if we do, we will be infinitely more happy in the long run.
2-God wants you to be happy.
*That’s why verses 1&2 give us one of the greatest helps to happiness you will ever find:
-And it’s prayer.
"I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty."
*God gives us 4 words for prayer here, and the first 3 are similar, but each gives us a little more insight on prayer.
*Supplications: It’s the idea of having a need & asking for help, but the root word is "to bind"...
-So there is a great strength here, binding ourselves as with chains to our purpose in prayer.
--But also binding ourselves to God & His will, no matter how He chooses to answer.
*We offer our supplications, and our prayers.
-This is also asking, but this word was only used to describe asking God for help, so there is the idea of reverence & worship.
*And as Barclay said, the understanding that:
"There are certain needs which only God can satisfy. There is a strength which he alone can give; a forgiveness which he alone can grant; a certainty which he alone can bestow."