Sermons

Summary: We have an edifice complex. We have a problem wanting to build up "houses" for God but God wants to build a house for us. Let Him.

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-Building a house is an impossible task

-We’ve had two homes built for us while we were in Iowa

-Both of them were horrific messes

-We wanted the white package with the first home – it was a spec that we added a few upgrades to

-They probably called us a dozen times to make sure that we indeed wanted white handrails

-They tried and tried to talk us out of white handrails until we insisted

-Then I tackled finishing 800 sq ft of the basement

-Since it was my very first major project, I enlisted the help of a contractor friend of ours

-He walked and talked me through the task

-I learned a lot about how and how not to do construction

-That was helpful for our custom house from Hades that we had built next

-Nothing went right

-We got call after call about how things were getting messed up

-Linda got a call one day from the cabinet guy who said that the entire house plan was backwards

-She raced out to the job site to find out that we was working off the old plans

-The foundation ended up costing $10,000 more than estimated

-The septic system cost $10,000 more than estimated

-It was one thing after another

-Linda never, ever wants to build another custom house

-Building a house is a very difficult task but that is what King David wanted to do for God {PAUSE}

-You see, David had been fighting to establish his kingdom for a long tim

-He had been anointed as king as a young boy after God rejected King Saul for not obeying His commands

-For Saul was instructed to make war against one of the enemies of Israel, the Amalekites and destroy everyone and everything

-Instead, Saul captured the king and allowed his men to seize the best livestock for themselves

-So God sent the priest, Samuel, to anoint David, one of the sons of Jesse, to be king over Israel

-Now it would be many years before David would indeed ascend to the throne

-He would finally rout the Jebusites and take over their fortress at Jerusalem and make it the city of David

-With the fortress as his lair, David had a wonderful jumping off point in order to finally destroy the Philistines

-With safety from his enemies on every side provided by God, David went about improving his situation

-As he took up residence in the palace, apparently his conscience began to bother him as he compared his living arrangements with the space that the ark of the covenant occupied

-He began to ask himself, “Why am I living in a palace when God is living in a tent?” {PAUSE}

-There is a song that came out a few years ago performed by the group Tree63 entitled, “Look what you’ve done for me”

-The lyrics go like this:

Look what you’ve done for me,

Your blood has set me free

Jesus my Lord, look what you’ve done for me

I haven’t been the same, since that day I called your name

Yahweh, Yahweh, look what you’ve done for me

Chorus:

What can I do for you my Lord

I want you to know my heart is yours

It’s not a question of what you can do for me

But what can I do for you my Lord?

-That really reflects the same attitude as King David

-It is supposed to be an attitude of servitude to God

-Could that possibly be a bad thing?

-Well, amazingly it could be {PAUSE}

-There was a time in my life after God helped me to take my life a little more seriously and helped me to appreciate all that He had done for me in my baptism.

-At that point I started looking really hard at what the Bible said about Christian living

-I went about trying to live a holy life

-I was really hard on myself when I messed up and was probably even harder on the people around me, Christian and non-Christian alike

-I wasn’t having much fun being a Christian and I probably wasn’t that much fun to be around either

-Essentially what I was trying to do was to earn God’s favor after the fact or to pay God back for all that He had done for me

-It’s called Pietism

-It’s essentially the same thing that Jesus faced among the Pharisees of His day

-They tried to merit their own salvation by doing “good” deeds instead of depending solely on the amazing grace of God

-I was trying to be helpful to God but in doing so I was not be helpful at all

-It’s a little like Marie and Frank Barone on the show “Everybody Loves Raymond”

-I remember one episode where Ray and Debra decided to try to “pay back” Marie and Frank for all of their “good” deeds for them

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