Sermons

Summary: We need reminders to keep us realistic about human social behavior, about our tendency to accommodate our own sin, and about the nature of government leaders.

Realistic Reminders

(Proverbs 28:11-16)

1. Everyone is forgetful at times. The difference is often this: some people remember they are absent-minded, others forget they are absent-minded.

2. One of my favorite original jokes is also true: I read a book about how to remember, but forgot what it said. Generally speaking, the less you have going on in your head, the easier it is to remember. So write down as much as you can, or don’t think so much.

3. One Canadian gal from Vancouver writes, “I am super scatterbrained and do stupid things all the time. As I said in the other thread, my shining moment was when I was taking the skytrain home from work. Got off the train at my stop and went to wait for the bus home. Got on the bus, and one stop before mine I realized I had driven to the skytrain that day. Ughhh, had to go across the street to wait for the bus back to the train to get my car”

[source: http://buzzle.ca].

4. Here are ten things many people forget everyday:

• To return phone calls or emails

• Where you parked your car

• People's names

• Sending greeting cards

• Charging our phones

• Passwords to different websites

• Taking meat out of the freezer to defrost it

• Watering the plants

• Where we put our keys or purse

• Forget why you came into a room

• Forget where you are driving

Main idea: We need reminders to keep us realistic about human social behavior, about our tendency to accommodate our own sin, and about the nature of government leaders.

I. A Measure of Success Can Breed Self-Assured ARROGANCE (11).

A. Success can PUFF Up someone who is not all that great, down deep.

1. Why is it that popular singers and movie stars think they are experts about politics and everything else, for that matter? Arrogance.

2. Self-help books/seminars about success often flow from this arrogance. Many of who will tell you how to be happily married, for example, have horrible marriages.

3. Past success does not guarantee future success. Consider CEOs fired in 2019:

• Away's Steph Korey.

• Best Buy's Hubert Joly.

• EBay's Devin Wenig.

• Expedia's Mark Okerstrom.

• Gap's Art Peck. ...

• Kraft Heinz's Bernardo Hees. ...

• McDonald's Steve Easterbrook. ...

B. It is easy to become the BIG FISH in the little pond.

• It doesn’t take great name recognition to get arrogant, anybody can.

• A woman complemented the pastor after church for preaching a good sermon. He said, “Don’t thank me, thank the Lord.” Woman said, “It wasn’t that good.”

C. Wise, less-successful people, can easily DETECT these arrogance problem.

• Different from jealous people; wise people do not envy the arrogant. A poor jealous fool might, but not a poor wise person.

• Wisdom is a treasure that far outshines business (or career) success.

Remember, some people are in competition and prone to arrogance with even a little success. On the other hand, some of the most successful people are humble. Check your own attitude; are you competing with others, or identifying yourself primarily as a Christian.

II. We Have an On-going Choice: Confess and Forsake our Sins or Conceal Them and HARDEN Our Hearts (13-14).

The context here is our relationship to God, can also apply to our relationship to others.

A. Facing and FORSAKING is the godly choice (13).

1. I John 1:8-9, “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

2. When we eat something toxic our body will try to expel it. No fun. When we sin, repenting & confessing our sin to God and is how we remove toxicity from our souls.

B. Concealing and HARDENING one’s heart, the ungodly (13b, 14).

1. Hebrews 3:13, But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.

2. To harden your heart means to make your heart insensible to sin, abrasive dismissal

C. Two distinct sets of CONSEQUENCES:

Psalm 32:1-4, Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit.

1. Mercy (13)

2. Calamity (13b, 14)

When people conceal their sins or harden their hearts and sin boldly and shamelessly, they may seem to onlookers like they are enjoying life, but there is a chunk of their humanity that they have lost. When you abuse your conscience, part of you is dead.

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