Summary: Actions that will stop us from enjoying the full blessing of God include unbridled tongues, unrepentant hearts, unbelieving eyes, unlistening ears, unwilling hands, and unmoving feet.
STOPPED FROM ENJOYING THE FULL BLESSINGS OF GOD
Introduction: God called Israel out of Egypt with the intent of leading them into the Promised Land and of showering His bountiful blessings upon them. Their actions stopped them from enjoying the full blessings of God and from entering the Promised Land. In Psalm 31:19 David writes “"Oh, how great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear You". As the Body of Christ, God has marvelous blessings He has prepared for us today. But we are not going to enjoy them if we, like Israel, allow our actions to stop them from flowing into our church and individual lives by our actions. Actions that will stop us from enjoying the full blessing of God include unbridled tongues, unrepentant hearts, unbelieving eyes, unlistening ears, unwilling hands, and unmoving feet.
I. Unbridled Tongues
A. Numbers 14:27-30 How long shall this wicked congregation grumble against me? I have heard the grumblings of the people of Israel, which they grumble against me. Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord, what you have said in my hearing I will do to you: your dead bodies shall fall in this wilderness, and of all your number, listed in the census from twenty years old and upward, who have grumbled against me, not one shall come into the land where I swore that I would make you dwell, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun.
B. Murmuring, grumbling, gossiping, lying to one another, and sowing discord kept Israel from enjoying the Promised Land.
C. James 3:2-8 “For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. 3 If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things. How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.”
D. If we Christians spent as much time praying as we do grumbling, we would soon have nothing to grumble about. - copied
E. Colossians 3:8-10 “But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.”
F. The only way to "bridle" the tongue is with a "bit" of love. – copied
II. Unrepentant Hearts
A. Hebrews 3:7-11 Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness, where your fathers put me to the test and saw my works for forty years.” Therefore I was provoked with that generation, and said, “They always go astray in their heart; they have not known my ways.” As I swore in my wrath, “They shall not enter my rest.”
B. Daniel 5:20 But when his (King Nebuchadnezzar’s) heart was lifted up, and his spirit was hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him.
C. Unforgiving toward others
1. Unforgiveness is a willful choice to hold on to hurt, anger, and hostility. In essence, we are denying the cross, which was the ultimate sacrifice for all sin and wrongdoing. Refusing to forgive is a sin. – Charles Stanley, © 2008 In Touch Ministries® All Rights Reserved.
2. Ephesians 4:32 “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”
D. Unconvinced as to their condition
1. There are those who have the outward forms of faith but lack inner conviction.
2. Matthew 7:3 “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?”
3. Psalm 38:4, 18 “For my iniquities have gone over my head; like a heavy burden, they are too heavy for me... I confess my iniquity; I am sorry for my sin.”