Sermons

Summary: You better not rewrite it. The better you know it the better it is for you and those you impact.

When I was training to be a Contract Specialist in South Carolina, my mentor, Art Nalley, always stressed one thing. “What does the contact say?’ That was second only to “Don’t worry about the mule going blind just load the wagon” when the workload was intense. That is a Mississippi adage.

Government contracts can be quite intricate and sometimes a bit vague. When I arrived as a trainee we were still doing cut and paste contracts as the section was not thrilled with working with computers. Thanks to some previous computer training, I was able to get the section fully automated. We had no internet at that time and we always quoted a couple of USC. codes that were to be followed and yet we had no copies of them to let the contractor read what he was being required to comply with. Not sure how he or we would have known If he violated them.

Because of some things being vague and others so complex that you needed a lawyer we often had discussions over what paragraphs said as to who was responsible for what or the proper specifications. Like many things, you could get three people to look at it and get six interpretations. Art said that it did not matter what the contractor said or even what I thought we had to dig deep, if necessary, to know what the contract says.

Over the years, I have found that something similar exists in the Church. When I was first saved and sat in Sunday School people were answering questions with, “I think, I feel, Maybe or even the culture says” I was confused. I was hearing Scripture that said, “Thus saith the Lord” and yet all I heard was generalities and feelings.

When I went to Bible college, it was not much better as we read so many authors that had varied opinions. I found more convincing statements in many of the books in the library from men who had been dead a hundred years. More contemporary men were not so confident as the old scholars.

This is not a new thing as God has had to send clarification through His prophets throughout man’s history. Jesus came and kicked a lot of theology and traditions in the face making Him unpopular everywhere except among the common man. There were several schools of theology. There were extreme Liberals and extreme Conservatives with both rewriting the Word to their agendas either adding to or taking away from it at will. Ever wonder why the people were not as on fire for God at various times in history? They had trouble with what was being taught and often how the priesthood behaved. They either lived in despair or were given false hope.

Matthew 5:43  Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. 

44  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; 

45  That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. 

46  For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? 

This is one of eleven times in Matthew that Jesus had to tell the people what the current theology or cultural consensus was and then tell them the truth. There are a myriad of things you have heard today that if we check the contract/Word correctly we will find that many are incorrect. Too often we have pendulum swing theology. We react to real or perceived legalism by swinging too far to the other side using our feelings to rule or not matching our experiences and things we see to Scripture. The letter without the Spirit is dead, but Spirit is not going to override what He was instrumental in writing. Thus if what you see, hear, feel or whatever does not match up with the Word it is not the Holy Spirit you see moving. If it replaces anything, be very careful.

Galatians 1:6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:

7) Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

8) But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.

Paul says that if he or an angel changes or perverts the Gospel then he and the angel are accursed. There is a lot of interest in Apostles these days. Some groups believe that the people they call prophets, priests, apostles and even the early church Fathers had the right to disagree with the writers of the New Testament and override what they said. Some have founders/prophets that have changed not only the Gospel but many other doctrines into things not supported by the contract. This is how we end up with so much false doctrine, cults and apostatized groups.

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