Summary: Discussed being fully planted and committed to Christ.
I Shall Not Be Moved
The last time I stood before you I told you that we are all living testimonies. We are a living testimony whether we are having a great time or going through hard times. The question that we must consistently answer is what testimony we are portraying. After I delivered that message, I was reading the newspaper and came across an article on the website beliefnet.com. This is a website that gives "spiritual" insight into a lot of issues and is not based on any denomination. This website is looked to by millions for research, advice and information, some of which is scripturally accurate and some questionable (you need to research it in God’s Word to know the difference.) There were over 3 millions visitors to the site in September alone. When you visit the site, you can fill out a short survey about your "religious beliefs" and or affiliations. Here are the results of the millions of people who have visited the website as reported in the USA Today newspaper:
„X .5% categorized themselves as hardcore skeptics (not spiritual or religious, but interested);
„X 4.3% as spiritual dabblers (open to spiritual matters but far from impressed);
„X 8.2% as active spiritual seekers (spiritual but turned off by organized religion);
„X 13.6% as spiritual straddlers (one foot in traditional religion and one in free-form spirituality);
„X 19.8% as old-fashioned seekers (happy with their religion but searching for the right expression of it);
„X 21.4% as questioning believer (have doubts about particulars but not the big stuff);
„X 25.6% as confident believers (little doubt they’ve found the right path);
„X 6.4% as candidate for clergy (very informed and deeply committed.
I was amazed that only 6.4% of the people who visited the website and completed the survey considered themselves informed and committed enough to be a candidate for the clergy. That is a scary percentage. Even though 25.6% believed that they had found their religion and were on the right path, they did not believe they were well informed or committed. As I went through these groups, if you were the respondent, where would you place yourself? Are you a candidate for the clergy because you are informed and committed or are you a spiritual straddler because you have one foot in traditional religion and one foot in free-form spirituality?
As you consider where you fall, let me be clear, I would consider myself in the candidate for clergy and I would hope you would also. You need to be informed and you need to be committed. Being informed and committed is not a bad thing; it is how you express it. This morning I want you to know that "I Shall Not Be moved!" I will not straddle the fence or fall for every wind of doctrine, I will not be moved. I believe in Jesus Christ and because of that belief and acceptance, I am a child of God and because I am His child, He is steadfastly looking out for me. I believe this and I shall not be moved! When I was a child we sung a song that had these words in the chorus: "I shall not, I shall not be moved, I shall not, I shall not be moved just like a tree planted by the waters, I shall not be moved." This is an election year and I have been very disappointed at all of the "political advertisements" that are trying to "move me." It was bad enough just seeing the commercials, but then they started calling my home with their ads. When I watched to those ads, I refuse to be swayed by them. When I hear the first part of a message they leave on my phone, I delete the message. I will not be influenced by what they "want me to know."
This morning I want to ask you to plant yourselves; to make a commitment to God that as of today, you will become informed. You will not depend on the testimonies and faith of others; you will search the Word for yourself and become planted. There are many truths out there that are not necessarily addressed point by point in God’s Word, but the truth about His Son, the truth about who you are in Him and the power that is within you should be so firm that nothing could move you. Consider what Jesus said in the following Scripture found in Matthew 7:24-27; what I consider our "call to be planted."
I. The Call To Plant
"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the flood came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell and the floods came and the winds blew and slammed against the house and it fell and great was its fall."