Summary: This message looks at man’s rejection of God, and how God sought to restore man. this is part two of a Christmas series
MAN’S WOEFUL GIFT OF REJECTION:
When we are flat on our backs there is no way to look but up. Roger W. Babson
ILLUSTRATION: One year, WTOP asked "What’s the worst Christmas present you’ve ever received?" Here are some of your answers.
My ex-wife gave me a Washington Redskins sweat shirt. I’m a KC Chiefs fan: always have been. Looking the shirt over, I notice a name written on the collar. When I asked her about it she told me it belonged to a friend’s uncle who had recently died, and she thought it was to nice to throw away. Even today I wear it and it is become to be known as my Dead Man sweat shirt.
The first year I was married, my mother-in-law gave me a bathroom scale for Christmas!
My boyfriend’s mother once gave me 10 cans of hairspray -- Aquanet.
When I was 10 years old, my parents gave me and my 6 brothers and sisters matching plastic laundry hampers for Christmas. 4 Blue (for the boys) and 3 pink (for the girls). Worst of all: there were no toys inside. I was devastated!
For our first Christmas, my husband asked me what I wanted. I told him I NEEDED a vacuum cleaner. He gave me a vacuum cleaner. For our first anniversary a week later (on New Year’s Day), he gave me the attachments.
A gorilla toy that did the "Macarena" when you clap your hands!
A small picture frame surrounded by plastic deer antlers.
A share of a goat (my mother donated money to, Heifer International, and gave me a card that indicated that I had a share of a goat.)
Now, I am sure that we have all gotten gifts that we did not expect. And that happens all the time, but as we look at the Scripture this morning, what we see is something quite different. You see, in what happened in the garden of Eden, man giving to God something far worse then a bad gift. It was a gift of rejection. Rejecting God.
The world is full of people who have rejected God. Some have done it outwardly, others in ignorance. The Scripture not only tells us about this gift of rejection, but also how to rectify what has been done.
This morning, we are going to look not only at the rejection, but the result, and the consequences of rejection, finally then seeing what God’s Word has to say about turning it all around!
I THE BEGINNING OF MAN’S REJECTION
A Listening To The Wrong Advice
1 In the Bible there are three words associated with sin
a Hata – miss the mark, falling short of a standard
b Pesa – rebellion or transgression, a revolt against a standard
c Awon – iniquity or guilt, twisting a standard or deviating from it
2 Satan’s plan was to get Man to succumb to the same sin he did
Isaiah 14:13-14 You said in your heart, "I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. 14I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High."
3 Satan enacted an elaborate strategy to accomplish his desire
B Doubting The Right Person (here is how he did it!)
1 Satan got Eve alone – isolation
a No longer had the strength of her husband
b No longer had the wisdom of his experience with God
You and I need to understand that the best time to be tempted is when we are alone with our temptation. We cannot put ourselves in a place where we are exposed to what tempts us. In the Old Testament we see this clearly portrayed in the life of Joseph. His temptation was the wife of his master. Daniel was a slave in charge of his masters affairs, and his masters wife sought Joseph. To his credit, Joseph realized the temptation and at first kept himself away from the situation, or ran from it when it came upon him.
Satan had Eve in close proximity to what was tempting her
2 Satan got Eve through innocence
a The questions seemed innocent
b The questions raised doubt
c The questions brought uncertainty
d The questions brought a feeling of unreasonableness
Temptations seem innocent. We live in a world of fluctuating values. The Bible gives us concrete values, values that do not change over time. In fact, it is biblical teaching an belief that always seems to be at the root of controversy, when it comes to values.
ü The Bible declares a right and a wrong
ü The Bible declares a good and a bad