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Summary: God’s Blessing brings the joy of His presence in and through our lives!

HAPPY DAYS ARE HERE AGAIN!

ZECHARIAH 8:18-23

SEPTEMBER 8, 2002 PM SERVICE

INTRODUCTION: One morning R.C. Chapman, a devout Christian, was asked how he was feeling. "I’m burdened this morning!" was his reply. But his happy countenance contradicted his words. So the questioner exclaimed in surprise, "Are you really burdened, Mr. Chapman?" "Yes, but it’s a wonderful burden--it’s an overabundance of blessings for which I cannot find enough time or words to express my gratitude!" Seeing the puzzled look on the face of his friend, Chapman added with a smile, "I am referring to Psalm 68:19, which fully describes my condition. In that verse the Father in heaven reminds us that He ’daily loads us with benefits.’"

F.E. Marsh has enumerated some of God’s blessings:

An acceptance that can never be questioned. (Ephesians 1:6).

An inheritance that can never be lost (I Peter 1:3-5).

A deliverance that can never be excelled (2 Corinthians l:10).

A grace that can never be limited (2 Corinthians 12:9).

A hope that can never be disappointed. (Hebrews 6:18, 19).

A bounty that can never be withdrawn. (I Colossians 3:21-23).

A joy that need never be diminished (John 15:11).

A nearness to God that can never be reversed (Ephesians 2:13).

A peace that can never be disturbed (John 14:27).

A righteousness that can never be tarnished (2 Corinthians 5:21).

A salvation that can never be canceled (Hebrews 5:9).

F.E. Marsh.

TRANSITION THOUGHT: Our text for tonight speaks of the reality of God’s blessing. But often it does not match our materialistic mind set. The power of the blessing of God is His incredible presence in our lives. Truly this is the blessing of God, but when will it be enough for us? When will we succomb to the thrill of the very presence of God being our all in all? Our text explains just how God will bless and it is in us, around us, and through us!

THESIS SENTENCE: God’s Blessing brings the joy of His presence in and through our lives!

AFTER PRAYER AND FASTING 70 YEARS: A HAPPY FUTURE IS FORETOLD:

I. WE WILL BE JOYFUL AND GLAD [THE HOLY SPIRIT IN US (v. 19; 7:1-3) oracle #1 THE INITIAL BLESSING OF GOD]

A. FROM FASTING…

Should we continue to Fast? 7:1-3

1. Fasting is needed and important, it is obedience.

2. Will we always Fast? NO! After great times of Fasting, there must be celebration! God demands it!

3. Tangent: Why fast? Verse 13 and 14 of chapter 7!

ILLUSTRATION: Matthew 9: 14-15 “Then John’s disciples came and asked him, “How is it that we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” Jesus answered, “How can the guests of the bridegroom mourn while he is with them? The time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; then they will fast.”

4. Things are different now Zechariah says, “Now is a time for joy and gladness!!”

B. TO FAITHFULNESS

But what is the difference? TRUTH and PEACE

1. TRUTH:

a. EH’ METH: 8:3, 8, 16 x 2, 19. = 5 times used BY one author. b. Which is defined as: Stability, certainty, truth, trustworthiness; establishment: faithful (ness), right, sure, true: FAITHFULNESS!!

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