Sermons

Summary: A close look at apparent contradictions in the bible that are really powerful truths. Powerpoint available.

CONTRADICTIONS

LESSON III

SURRENDER IS NOT LOSING

October 22, 2006

DEFINITION SLIDE

CONTRADICTION: TO EXPRESS OR ASSERT THE OPPOSITE OF . . .

WE CAN ALSO SAY A CONTRADICTION IS SOMETHING THAT JUST DOESN’T MAKE SENSE.

FOR EXAMPLE.

ONLY IN AMERICA DO PEOPLE ORDER DOUBLE CHEESEBURGERS, LARGE FRIES . . . AND A DIET COKE.

ONLY IN AMERICA DO HOME OWNERS LEAVE CARS WORTH THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS IN THE DRIVEWAY . . . AND PUT THEIR JUNK IN THE GARAGE.

WE ARE IN OUR THIRD WEEK IN A SERIES CALLED CONTRADICTIONS.

WE HAVE BEEN LOOKING AT APPARENT CONTRADICTIONS IN SCRIPTURE AND SEEING THAT THEY REALLY AREN’T CONTRADICTIONS AT ALL.

ROMANS 6 TELLS US THAT TRUE FREEDOM COMES BY BECOMING A SLAVE.

FREEDOM FROM SIN IS SLAVERY TO CHRIST – WHAT A GREAT TRADE.

MATTHEW 20 TELLS US IN ORDER TO BE FIRST I MUST LEARN TO SERVE OTHERS.

AS HARD AS THIS IS WE SAW THERE ARE FANTASTIC BENEFITS TO FOLLOWING THIS BIBLICAL PRINCIPLE.

I’LL BEGIN TODAY’S LESSON BY DRAWING YOUR ATTENTION TO A COMMONALITY IN ALL HUMAN BEINGS.

EVERY HUMAN BEING IS BORN WITH A CONSCIENCE.

IT’S TRUE THERE ARE SOME PEOPLE WHO DEVELOP A SEARED CONSCIENCE, BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN THEY WERE NOT BORN WITH ONE.

WHEN I SAY “CONSCIENCE” I’M REFERRING TO THAT INNER SENSE OF WHAT IS RIGHT OR WRONG.

I’M TALKING ABOUT THAT PART OF US THAT DRIVES US TO DO OR NOT TO DO CERTAIN THINGS.

YOU KNOW WHAT THAT IS.

IT’S THAT INNER VOICE THAT DRIVES YOU NUTS WHEN YOU DO SOMETHING WRONG AND YOU KNOW YOU NEED TO MAKE IT RIGHT.

MAYBE WE STOLE SOMETHING OR LIED ABOUT SOMETHING OR MISREPRESENTED SOMETHING AND KNOTS START FORMING IN OUR STOMACH BECAUSE WE KNOW WE’RE WRONG.

AGAIN, I KNOW SOME PEOPLE HAVE LEARNED TO IGNORE THEIR CONSCIENCE AND OTHERS APPEAR TO HAVE COMPLETELY SHUT IT OFF, BUT IT’S STILL SOMETHING HUMANITY IS BORN WITH.

OKAY NOW PLEASE KEEP ALL THIS IN MIND AS WE GO THROUGH THE SCRIPTURES – WE’LL TIE EVERYTHING TOGETHER IN A MINUTE.

ACTS 26:12-14

THE CONTEXT IS THIS . . .

PAUL IS STANDING BEFORE KING AGRIPPA AND THE GOVERNOR FESTUS.

PAUL HAS BEEN ARRESTED FOR DISTURBING THE PEACE BY PREACHING THE GOSPEL.

AS HE STANDS BEFORE THESE MEN IN AUTHORITY PAUL RELAYS THE STORY OF HIS CONVERSION TO CHRIST.

HE TALKS ABOUT HOW HE PERSECUTED THE CHURCH BUT THEN BECAME A FOLLOWER OF JESUS HIMSELF.

THE ACTUAL EVENT TAKES PLACE BACK IN CHAPTER 9.

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT THIS VERSION OF THE STORY IS THAT THE APOSTLE PAUL ADDS A PIECE TO THE PUZZLE THAT WE DON’T HAVE IN CHAPTER 9.

HERE IN V. 14 THE APOSTLE PAUL TELLS US JESUS SAID. . .

SAUL, (PAUL) “IT IS HARD FOR YOU TO KICK AGAINST THE GOADS.”

FIRST OF ALL, WHAT IS A GOAD?

A GOAD IS A LONG STICK WITH A POINTED END.

IT’S USED TO DRIVE CATTLE AND OTHER LIVESTOCK.

ACTUALLY, TODAY IT’S AN ELECTRONIC CATTLE PROD.

IT’S A MOTIVATOR. IT’S A TOOL TO GET LIVESTOCK FROM POINT “A” TO POINT “B.”

IT’S SOMETHING THAT PRICKS, STINGS, EVEN POTENTIALLY BREAKS THE SKIN AND DRAWS BLOOD AS IT’S POKED.

JESUS SAYS TO PAUL, DUDE, WHAT ARE YOU DOING? IT HURTS TO KICK AGAINST A SHARP STICK.”

PAUL, I SEE THE PRICKS IN THE SKIN OF YOUR CONSCIENCE, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?”

FOLKS, THIS WHOLE THING FASCINATES ME – HERE’S WHY.

EXTERNALLY PAUL WAS CONFIDENT, DETERMINED, UNWAVERING.

HE WAS FULL BLOWN AGAINST THE CHURCH. HE WAS PUTTING PEOPLE IN JAIL AND KILLING THEM FOR BEING FOLLOWERS OF JESUS.

EXTERNALLY HE WAS ZEALOUS FOR THE PURITY OF OLD TESTAMENT LAW AND THE JEWISH TRADITIONS.

EXTERNALLY HE WAS FULFILLING THE DESIRES OF HIS SUPERIORS, THE JEWISH COUNCIL IN JERUSALEM.

BUT INSIDE . . . INSIDE THE FEET AND LEGS OF HIS CONSCIENCE WAS FULL OF BLOODY DOTS BECAUSE HE WAS KICKING AGAINST A SHARP STICK.

EVERY TIME HE PUT SOMEONE IN JAIL HE KICKED THE STICK OF HIS CONSCIENCE.

EVERY TIME SOMEONE DIED HIS CONSCIENCE GAVE HIM ANOTHER TWINGE OF PAIN.

I’LL GET TO THE CONTRADICTION IN A MINUTE, BUT I WOULD LIKE TO FIRST ADDRESS THOSE HERE TODAY WHO HAVE FRIENDS AND LOVED ONES WHO SEEM SO HARD AND CALLOUSED AGAINST GOD.

PLEASE HEAR THIS . . . EXTERNAL CONFIDENCE AND HARDNESS IS NOT AN INDICATION OF WHAT IS GOING ON INSIDE THAT PERSON.

WHEN I STARTED PREPARING THIS LESSON I NEVER INTENDED TO GO DOWN THIS PATH, BUT I BELIEVE IT’S IMPORTANT FOR SOME OF YOU TO HEAR.

THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE LOST OR ARE LOSING HOPE YOUR LOVED ONES WILL EVER COME TO CHRIST, JUST REMEMBER WHAT YOU SEE ON THE OUTSIDE DOES NOT ALWAYS REVEAL WHAT’S ON THE INSIDE.

THAT PERSON WAS BORN WITH A CONSCIENCE AND THE HOLY SPIRIT DOES NOT LEAVE PEOPLE ALONE.

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