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Summary: A sermon dealing with people who call themselves Christians but the really don’t believe that God says what He means and means what He says.

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Woe to those who don’t believe

Bro. David Rogers

Pastor Bethlehem Baptist Church

Winona Ms

Matthew 23:1-39

Prayer

Introduction

Years ago, I heard a story about a preacher who went to a small town to preach a series of gospel sermons. His attempt was to evangelize that little town. He preached for two weeks. During the whole time, only one little girl responded to the invitation at the end of one of his sermons. She confessed Christ, was baptized, and turned out to be the only convert during the entire meeting. The preacher judged the meeting a failure, and for years, bemoaned the great effort he had made for such little result.

However, he did not have the right view of things. That little girl grew up to be a strong, faithful Christian woman. She married a Christian man, and together they produced several sons, all of whom became preachers of the gospel. Those sons converted thousands of unbelievers to Christ.

Now, what do you suppose would have happened to that little girl and her family, had that gospel preacher not faithfully proclaimed Christ? Do you really think that preacher’s effort was a failure? Sometimes, what looks like a very small, insignificant effort on our part, turns out to be far greater than we think.

God takes one individual and through him He may touch thousands of souls. Billy Graham has touched millions of people and has lead thousands to Christ. Yet if it was not for a country preacher who was willing to preach the Gospel we may not have had a Billy Graham. That one person has been used by God greatly. All we have to do is let God lead and just follow. But today we don’t have in our churches and pulpits a drive a need to spread the Gospel. We would rather have programs than salvation grams.

Four things that Doug Murren says in his book Churches That Heal that hinders the church from becoming a church that heals:

i.A Lack of Compassion

He notes, “Two million people die every year. Only about 200,000 of those die knowing Jesus as their Savior. Loneliness is one of the major contributors to the high number of heart attacks. Each year 800,000 babies are born out of wedlock (Churches That Heal pg. 104).

ii.The “Us verse Them” mentality

This mindset builds walls and barriers toward unbelievers. We are to be the light and the salt to this lost world around us. We are to tell people about Jesus Christ and show them the way to eternal life. Not hide from them (105-108)!

iii.A lack of transparency (108, 109)

We must live lives that show that we are “Saved by Grace” and that we are not perfect. We must be genuine and authentic with others.

iv.A consumer mentality

This view has devastated the church today. Christian view church as a place to have their needs met. They have no desire or will to sacrifice and serve others. It is self-centered Christianity which focuses only on what do I get out of this church. The reason there is tremendous turnover in the church is because people move to keep getting their selfish needs met and do not desire to serve the Kingdom of God.

a.Doug notes, “In my city Seattle, nearly every church has a turnover of between 20 and 30 percent every year…By failing to denounce consumer Christianity, we are encouraging believers to become self-serving-a deadly killer of compassion…Making disciples must be our goal, not satisfying consumers” (110).

I.Many today are following false teachers who are teaching false doctrines. This feel good, pray it and claim it, and that God wants you to wealthy and if you are not then He is mad at you are all false teachings. They are Satan’s attempts to alter the Gospel message, to destroy the church’s testimony.

1.These false teacher place many burdens on their followers.

1.They require special rituals, traditions, and rules that their followers must follow.

2.Their followers must either follow rules and works salvation and hope that they have done enough or were good enough to be saved.

3.They live in fear because there is no assurance of salvation.

1.Woe to them. What a horrible life they must live. Never knowing whether or not they have been good enough or done enough to be saved.

1.Many will follow these teachers because the false doctrines allow them to do several things.

1.They can do what they want to.

2.They can do something to save themselves.

3.They can be in control of their lives and salvation.

4.They don’t have to surrender to a God who loves them and they would rather surrender to a man or organization that could care less about them.

II.These False Teachers are after power and prestige.

1.Many people want to follow someone. Many people today want something for nothing. They will follow anyone who they believe can give them what they want. They will sacrifice everything for a false religion. But they refuse to hear and follow the truth. Where they think they are getting something for nothing the are actually having work very something and in the end gain nothing.

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