Stewardship Of Material Things by Calvin Perrigo
"For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich." (II Corinthians 8:9) This verse of scripture is written to a church of God at Corinth by the Apostle Paul. It can be applied to you and I here this morning that have become rich in Christ Jesus our Lord. If you are an unsaved person here today, you can be rich in soul salvation. You may gain the whole world and loose your soul, and never know what it meant to be rich. You'll note that Paul said "He recognized the grace of our Lord." Anyone that has been born again by the Spirit of God, recognizes the grace of the Lord, if they've heard any Gospel Truth. I realize today that there are a lot of people that don't know much about the Gospel story. Many have been deceived and have been misled. But, until an individual realizes what Christ gave up, the death that he suffered for them, it's very unlikely that they'll be sorry for their sins. Godly sorrow worketh repentance, unto salvation. And at the end of repentance toward God, there is salvation from God. And that is the ultimate in being rich in this world.
I'd like for you to consider for a little while your Stewardship of Material Things, in view of the inner riches that we possess. We are just managers of those material items that we have access to upon this earth. All things were created by God, for his Glory, for his good pleasure. That includes you and I. God created all and had it in order, and then he had a desire to create a being that would reflect some of him. In his image and after his likeness, we, were created. I say that in view of Adam's creation, and we are his offspring. God gave us the privilege, through the command that he gave to Adam and Noah, to subdue the earth, to refill it, or to replenish it, and he left mankind in charge of all things upon this earth that we know as material things.
Most people today calculate their riches by their material possessions. Will that harmonize with our reading lesson? Christ was rich, he became poor that you and I might be rich. And we know that when we are bought again by the Spirit of God, and we follow our Lord and our Savior in Baptism, and in other walks of life, that we are likely to possess in this world no more than our Lord possessed, from a material standpoint. He had no home. He had no place to lay his head. Yet, he left the riches of Glory and came to that condition. You and I today, when we look at our stewardship of managing the material things that God has given unto us, we have a responsibility.
There are ample scriptures that prove beyond any doubt, that it all belongs to God. Abraham knew that when he was talking to the King of Sodom. He said, "He is the owner or the possessor of heaven and earth." In the book of Genesis, we find where Abraham admitted this, declared this truth, to the King of Sodom, when they had returned from the slaughter of the Kings. Abrams words read like this; "I lift up mine hand unto the Lord, the most high God, the possessor of heaven and earth." If there were no other scriptures in the Bible that tells us that God owns it all, that one would be sufficient. But, there are ample scriptures throughout the Bible that tell us about God's ownership. He gets down into some details as far as the cattle upon a thousand hills. And he talks intently throughout the scriptures about He being the owner of all. And He gives riches, and He gives wealth, and it cannot be obtained unless God is the giver of those things.
The man that had the great increase in his crops, that thought he had goods laid up for many years, assumed that it was his to claim and do with as he chose. But, from going to bed that night as a very wealthy person, he died a fool pauper. God took it all and he left this world, just as he entered it, without nothing.
Paul tells us that we too, shall leave the world as we entered it, and he "came in with nothing, and he says it's evident that I will go out with nothing." So, all in between birth and death, the material aspect of life, we are no more than managers of that that God allows us to touch. No one has ever taken anything materially out of this world. And we find ourselves responsible stewards unto the Lord.
We should have a personal responsibility toward those things. One very important aspect to consider is the way that a person gets and a way a person uses the money of this world. You can judge their character right there, a lot quicker than you can by other deeds. How a person chooses to make their money, how a person chooses to use their money is a good way to read character in life. Why would we say that? Because, God is the owner of it all. It belongs to him, and how I earn my money reflects on God. How I use my money reflects on God. And a person can be analyzed by those two things, as far as being a good steward of the material things of this world.
How we chose to make it, how we chose to use it, reflects on our God. I know there are needs among us all, and we have to supply those needs. We are compelled by love and our responsibility to one another, to take care of each other, family speaking, church speaking, community speaking, society in general. And we know that those needs have to be met. We know there are ways we should use our money, but regardless of how we use it, it all ought to be used for God. Can you walk into a liquor store and say, "God and I want to buy a fifth? Can you walk into a store and buy a pack of cigarettes and say "God and I want to buy a pack of cigarettes? Can you walk into a clothing store and say, "God and I want to buy a thousand dollar suit of clothes? If you can do that, you've got no problem in the world. But until you and I get to the point to where it's God and me using our money, then we are liable to become extravagant with it, we're liable to waste it, and we're liable to bring reproach upon our God by the way that we use it.
So, we've got to be careful, as managers of the material things in life, that we keep God in the proper perspective. HE IS THE OWNER OF IT ALL. And we are just managers of it. We have a responsibility to manage it properly. And God also fixed it, and allowed us to do those things. He gives riches and wealth, according to the 5th Chapter of Ecclesiastes. And if he gives, then surely we are responsible for that. In the 25th Chapter of Matthew, we find the kingdom of heaven as a man that left his servants some money. Five talents here, two talents there, one talent over there, and those men took that as good stewards of God, two of them did, and they made an increase. The one that received the five talents so managed the Lord's money that he doubled it. The same thing happened with the person that got the two talents, he doubled his Lord's money. And when the Lord returned from his visit, they cheerfully gave up the ten talents and the four talents, and the Lord blessed them by what they had done, and said because you've been faithful over a few, I'm going to do better by you. He approached the man that had the one talent, and he went and buried it, he had not improved upon what God gave him whatsoever, and he was reprimanded and what he had was taken from him and given to those. So, we can see by these things, that we are responsible for what God allows us to have access to.
If we own properties in this world, we should also manage them as good stewards of God. And if we are in a position to buy properties, we surely need to consider what we will buy. You have no business investing in sin, regardless of how much return you get on it. And you, as a manager of the goodness of God, have no right to invest in something where it will be noted that you got what you got by the evil devises of Satan.
In order to be a good steward of God, you have to talk to the Lord about your future investments. "Lord what would you have me to do? Would you have me to invest here or invest there." So when we think about investing, we need to consider those things that we are about to invest in. How do we consider the business sense of the merchant that was seeking goodly pearls? Would we consider him a good businessman. Let's look at it from the Book of Matthew, 13th Chapter. Here's what we read from the words of the Lord. "Again the kingdom of heaven is likened unto a merchant man seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it." Now if we are good stewards of God's materials blessings, and we have a responsibility of investment, let's consider what the merchantman did here. He was out looking for something good, in the sense, it was a pearl. And he found one pearl of great value. And he so desired that pearl, and he could see the quality of it, the value of it, that he sold everything that he had and purchased that one item. You and I know what the Lord purchased, as far as our salvation. You know what he purchased as far as the church is concerned. And we are people of God, and he has an investment in you and I and he does expect us to have a stewardship, an honorable stewardship over the material things that he gives us.
If we mismanage the things that God has so graciously given us, it's very likely that we will not have anything to manage tomorrow. But, if we will manage it and have God involved in our dealing, we can go out and we can purchase our pearls of great price, whatever they may be, and we can honor God in that that we do. The Church of the Living God was purchased by the blood of Jesus Christ, and if we, as its members are good stewards of that Church, God will reap a great return on his investment. If we mismanage it, God will be disgraced, and he'll pull his candlestick and place it somewhere where he can be honored and glorified in the work of the Church. So, let's remember our stewardship of material things.
Giving is a worship. Giving is a worship. In order to have something to give, you have to be a good manager of the material things of this world. People that don't have anything, cannot give materially speaking. In order for us to worship God, honorably, in the grace of giving, we must manage and use those things that we have access to, that we might be able to worship God more than we did yesterday.
The person that is able, by the grace of God, to contribute a thousand dollars, will worship God in giving that. The person that doesn't have but fifteen cents to their name, because of mismanagement, cannot attain to the point of worship that, that the individual can that gives the great contribution. This may be alarming to you. But God will not forgive the mismanagement of material things, that we have squandered in this life, and then turn to him and say "Lord, here is your one talent that you gave to me, take yours as you gave it unto me. So, when we think about the material stewardship of life, let's be sure that our ultimate goal is to honor God with our substance.
Honor God with our substance. Worship God in giving. Do you think God needs something from you? He made a statement to Israel, "If I were hungry would I ask you for food?" That's not the quotation of it, but that's the meaning of it. If we give to God because we think that God needs it, we're missing a blessing. We are not giving it cheerfully if we think we give because God needs it. Now there's a difference in us knowing that some human being needs something, but if we face God in our giving, as if God needed that and we were doing him a favor, we have mismanaged the grace of giving. And we have failed to attain through the glorious position of worshipping God in giving.
God loves a cheerful giver. The Greek word for cheerful in there could have been translated "Hilarious". Hilarious, have you ever been so glad and hilarious that you just could not contain yourself? Joy unspeakable and full of glory. That's what the word means in the Corinthian letter. God loves a hilarious giver. And that's what He would like for you and I to do each time that we give Him just a little bit of what He owns to begin with. And he surely does love a cheerful giver.
The Lord lived in poverty. He left the riches of Glory and came into this circumstance. He didn't have enough material wealth to pay his taxes. Neither did his disciples. And They were questioned about this on one occasion, about does your master pay taxes? "Do you people pay taxes in your religious work?" That was in essence the question asked, and the Lord sent the apostle out there with instructions to cast a hook into the sea and the fish that you bring up, you'll find your tax money inside that fish. And that's what happened. They paid their taxes. They lived an honorable life, and they were not dependant upon the government.
We are a nation of people today that have become dependant upon the Federal Government, and we wonder if the Federal Government does not make all the money in the mints of this country. The Federal Government has not a penny outside the taxes of its citizens. So, if you think you're getting something from the government, you look in somebody's pocket. You've stripped them. So, the government has no way to make any money. Except its tax program. But we've become dependant upon the government. And we're drifting fast with the other religious societies of this world, in allowing government to give us certain breaks here and certain breaks there. I want you to know as far as the governments of this world are concerned, there's nothing free. And just as sure as they give God's church a tax break here, they're going to impose something on you yonder.
It may not be in our lifetime, it may be. But, we have to be careful about our stewardship of material things. So, let's be mindful of where we are before the Lord of Glory.
Alright, there are people managing the things of material wealth that say "well, as long as it doesn't cost me anything, I believe I can make it." Its like that story I heard from that dear old Baptist sister that had been a Baptist 50 years and said "I don't suppose I've been out over $25.00. Now wasn't that a thing to be a Baptist for? Because it was so cheap.
Let me give you an example found in the scriptures of how it is to make an offering to God. And please listen to what David said on this occasion. David had disobeyed God. He had ran a census in Israel and God was displeased with it, and he brought a plague on Israel, and those things there upon Israel at that time were due to David's mismanagement of his Kingship of Israel. And he went down to what is now Jerusalem to make an offering, and here we find recorded in II Samuel Chapter 24. And here we want to find some character in the man David. We have him talking to a King here by the name of Araunah. "And Araunah said, Wherefore is my lord the king come to his servant? And David said, To buy the threshingfloor of thee, to build an altar unto the Lord, that the plague may be stayed from the people." David was concerned about the plague upon the people of Israel, and he came down there to purchase a threshingfloor to build an altar unto the Lord that the plague might be lifted from Israel. "And Araunah said unto David, Let my lord the king take and offer up what seemeth good unto him: behold here be oxen for burnt sacrifice, and threshing instruments and other instruments of the oxen for wood. All these thing did Araunah, as a king, give unto the king. And Araunah said unto the king, The Lord thy God accept thee." What do we have at this point? We have a gift presented from Araunah to David. He says, "Here are oxen for sacrifice, here are the threshing instruments for the fuel for the sacrifice, you take these, and may the Lord thy God accept thee." Now, let's listen to King David's position here. "And the king said unto Araunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the Lord my God of that which doth cost me nothing."
Can you offer to God something that didn't cost you anything? Can you go out here and win your Bingo and your lotteries and give that to the Lord and say, "Here is my tithe"? Can you in any circumstances have somebody give you something and you sacrifice that to the Lord and feel good about it? David was the King of Israel. This man had already offered him the oxen, he offered him the fuel for the fire and David refused that and he said "I will not offer to the Lord something that cost nothing." So David bought the threshingfloor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver.
He went on and built his altar, he made his peace offering and the Lord was entreated, the land and the plague was stayed from Israel. So, when we consider our material stewardship, let us be sure that we understand that when we offer something to God, it ought to be because we have something invested in it, and that we're not just freeloading and giving God something that cost us nothing.
Now there are religious people in our country today that are all for everything as far as contributing and giving, as long as it doesn't cost them anything. As long as we can wrangle around some angle, where it costs us nothing, we can make sacrifices. But we're talking about our positions as good stewards of the material things of this world, and how good it does feel to give to God, that that belongs to him to begin with.
It's a blessing that many people fail to ever enjoy, is to be able to give back to the God of all creation, that God that is the possessor of heaven and earth, that One that owns a cattle on a thousand hills, that One that if He was hungry would never ask a human being for something, that One that deserves all honor and glory because he left the riches of Glory, became poor, that you and I might become rich, that God, that Jesus, deserves the best management that we are cable of giving, as far as our material things are concerned.
You can test him if you wish to. If you want to run a test this week, waste your $50.00 and you'll see God get his $50.00, right before your eyes. If you want to run a test on it, squander a certain amount of money and wait for that amount to leave out the back door somewhere. God is not to be mocked in any circumstances. And If He gave man the opportunity on this earth to subdue this earth, knowing that the material things were his by creation, knowing that Lucifer failed in his management of it and was cast down, and in doing so, brought sin to this world, God knowing that, he expects a little more out of a redeemed soul that has passed from death unto life.
Let us be good stewards of the material things that God has given unto us. So when we worship God with giving, let's remember; don't give it because you feel that God requires it of you. Don't give it as if you are helping God. But give it because you have the privilege to, and there are manifold needs in this world that can use that for the advancement of their lives and the ultimate advancement of God's kingdom upon this earth.
I would advise you not to be a "chip-iner". There are people that just want to chip-in when some need is mentioned, without actually coming to grips with God and saying, it's all yours, "How much would you have me to contribute to this particular need?" You can get your priorities straight if you go by the formula of the Bible. If you by luck or haphazard means expect to come to a plain upon this earth of how much to give to the cause of the Lord, you will probably never meet your obligation to the Lord in this world. But if you, through prayer, and the following of the teaching of the Bible, come to your point of giving, you'll find the Lord will bless, and he will be the ultimate winner in that that we have to give unto him.
There are some promises in the Bible. I would not under any circumstances, stand up here and try to preach to you that you ought to give in order to receive. Don't ever, please don't ever get that idea in your head. If I give five, maybe God will give me six. If I give ten, maybe God will return five of it back to me. Don't ever take that position in life. But, there are promises from the Lord, that if we will be right by our material things, that the Lord will recognize that and that He will return some things to those that honestly and sincerely worship him in giving, and those that are honest in this world with the material things.
Do you remember my gauge a moment ago that I mentioned, that is, how a person gets their money, how a person uses his money, is a characteristic that cannot be misunderstood. Luke Chapter 6, verse 38, Jesus speaking. Maybe we should get the verse above it also. Maybe we should get the verse above that one also. "Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful." Now we are taught to be merciful because our Heavenly Father is. "Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again." A good steward of the material things of this world will honor God with their substance. They will find the truth of Proverbs Chapter 3. What do we find in this writing of Solomon concerning our stewardship of the material things of this world?
A good formula for every young person here. A good formula for middle aged people that are here. A good formula for the old people that are here. Proverbs 3:9 "Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine." Honour the Lord with thy substance. Now that's material things. Honour him with your material things, Solomon wrote, and with the firstfruits of all your increase. Off of the top of it, in other words, not the crumbs that fall from the rich man's table. But, the firstfruits of our material increase should be offered to God, and He will fill your barns with plenty, your winepress shall burst out with new wine.
Giving then, is a form of worship. The first one mentioned in the Old Testament is giving. The first offering recorded, I don't know what the first one was. The first one recorded is Cain and Able. And they both gave of their increase. And we know that if we look over into the New Testament, we have the first worship mentioned there in the Book of Matthew, is when the Wise men came to the East and presented their gifts to the little boy there in the house, called Jesus. It is the prized and purest form of worship. And we will be neglecting that great blessed privilege unless we manage our material things in the proper way that God has prescribed.
As we close, I want to show you what proper stewardship will bring to pass, as far as material things are concerned. Very early in the record of the Bible, we have the evidence of what proper stewardship can bring to pass. I've witnessed it in the last six weeks within my own life, and some of your lives. In Exodus Chapter 36, God had commanded that the poor slaves of Egypt, been down there four hundred years, been mistreated, abused, escaped by the skin of their teeth. Like to have not got away from Pharaoh when the Red Sea opened up. Those poverty ridden people, out there in the wilderness, wandering, with no substance, having to be fed from God, the manna from Heaven, the water from the rock, and God said, "I want you to build me a tabernacle. I don't want no shoddy job, I want you to build it according to my pattern." And in order to build that magnificent structure, that mobile unit, known as a tabernacle, that tent and all of its furnishings, it required some material things from the children of Israel. The word went out for those things needed for the sanctuary. "They brought yet unto him free offerings every morning." We come to church and we take up a collection on Sunday morning, and you don't have to worry about the church taking up another collection until conference night again. But here, "they brought yet unto him free will offerings every morning." This is Exodus 36:3 "And all the wise men, that wrought all the work of the sanctuary, came every man from his work which they made; And they spake unto Moses, saying, The people bring much more than enough for the service of the work, which the Lord commanded to make." This is what proper stewardship of the material things will bring to pass in our day. If we as God's people manage it properly, and honorably, we too can hear similar words today.
What did they say to Moses? "The people bring much more than enough for the service of the work which the Lord commanded to make." And what did Moses do? Keep it coming in, fill our coffers, we'll buy another channel, we'll go on another network, we'll invest it in this and that. We'll buy us a casino in Las Vegas and in Atlantic City, and we will really multiply this circumstance. No, that's today's standard. We're talking about what Moses did when they said that people had brought to much. We've got enough. Here's what Moses did; "And Moses gave commandment, and they caused it to be proclaimed throughout the camp, saying, let neither man nor woman make any more work for the offering of the sanctuary. So the people were restrained from bringing." Now that's what proper stewardship of material things will bring to pass in the work of God.
We haven't attained to that point yet have we? The reason we haven't is because we've mismanaged our material things. Let me ask you this question as we close. You go back to your grandparents. They here today? Only grandparents, we won't go back any further than that. You want to go back to your parents, you can. But we'll just stop at grandparents. Go back to your grandparents, and if they had the opportunities that you and I have, what would have been accomplished from here to them, in the work of the Lord. My poor old grandparents, I didn't ever know either one of them. She died when I was six years old. I never knew the other three. But I've been to where they were living when they made their livelihood. And I know they were poverty stricken. I went back into Kentucky this last November, trying to find some evidence of the little old house my dad was raised in. Couldn't find anything but an old hand dug well. If, my grandparents had had what I have had in material speaking, and had been good stewards of that, they would have been more intent than we are today in serving our God with our material gains. You'll have to agree with me, that if our grandparents had of had what we have wasted, would not they have lived better, would not they have done more for the Lord and got the Gospel out into the foreign countries, rather than letting Southern Baptists deceive them. What would our forefathers have accomplished, that we're not accomplishing, if they had what we have got today?
And we must then confess, that we are mismanaging our material blessings from the Lord. We're misusing them. God comes last, our needs come first. We become extravagant. We buy this, we buy that. We don't a bit more need half of what we have, than anything. You can get by on one-third of what you get by on right now if you'll get basic with God's way and His book. I'm not saying that in order for you to do that. I'm just pointing out to you how we are mismanaging the material gifts that God has so graciously bestowed on the Baptists of the twentieth century, and what we're doing with it.
Would you be willing to turn in your net worth to this church, to see what this church is worth? And then stack it up with last years gifts? You don't have to put your name on your net worth. If you so want to do that, to see what the combined membership of this church is worth, and then stack that up with what we gave last year. I don't care if you didn't give it to this church, if you gave it somewhere else, keep all record of everything you give, if it's to this church, or somebody else, or if it's out in the community, whatever you give, regardless of where you gave it, if you'll keep a record of that versus the entire wealth of this church, you'll find that there will be such a distance between what we are and what we give, that it will embarrass you to no end.
How do you think God feels about that? Here I let those people have all those things there in the twentieth century, in the nation of the United States of America, and look what they're doing with it. Look what they're not doing with it, is what He's saying. And my people are dying. We rejoice over the fact that one soul is saved in Anchorage Alaska, why could not we be rejoicing because there was a hundred saved there and five or six churches had been there for years? Why? Because we've mismanaged our material things and we've stuck them yonder, rather than putting them back into the flow.
When you buy your fifth of liquor, you can rest assured, minus the tax money, that that money will never come back into God's cause. Look at the Kennedy family and the Fitzgerald family, who was mother Kennedy's family, what was her family name? Fitzgerald, have you ever seen a fifth of whiskey named old Fitzgerald? That's how they made their money. And a lot of other people have made their money like that. But when you squander your money on something like that, when you invest in the gambling machines of this world, when you buy your lottery tickets, do you expect that money to be funnelled back into the cause of God? Have you ever thought about it, that it's out of circulation as far as God's cause is concerned. It's going to be used for the things of this world.
So, we are responsible for how we use the gifts from God, and let us be good stewards of the material things, just as we were good stewards of life, just as we were good stewards of our time, just as we were good stewards of our vocation. Let us add now, good stewardship of the material things of this world.
I appreciate your listening to me. Jesus, although he was rich, became poor, for what purpose? That you and I as Baptist church members might be rich. You, as a saved soul, might enjoy the riches of eternal life. To be in the family of God. To be a joint heir with His only begotten Son. To recognize God as your Father, and all the family wealth now regardless of where it is or how much it is, from ages to ages, from the beginning of time to the end of time, to be an heir to that God the Father that is the possessor of Heaven and earth. You talk about the riches of this world that we live in being so important. I'd rather be a beggar by the side of the road, than to miss Heaven and all that it holds. I'd rather live in poverty upon this earth than to miss the splendors of Heaven. And sometimes we have to make those choices. Sometimes we try to figure out why couldn't the Lord have come to a different circumstance. Why couldn't he have owned a cattle on a thousand hills while he walked in the flesh? His Father owned them all. But He, gave it all up for the sinner and their soul's salvation. He died on the cross. Do you know what Judas thought he was worth? His old familiar friend that he ate bread with, lifted up his heal against him, and he concluded in his heart; "This man from Galilee is not worth but thirty pieces of silver. I suppose the pharisees thought they got a good bargain. They paid the thirty pieces of silver. Judas betrayed him, identified him, and they took him off and gave him a mock trial, and they took him on to Pilate, and they insisted that Pilate crucify him and let a murderer go free. And our Lord went all the way to Calvary, and there he became sin for you sinner, he became sin out there, took your place on that rugged cross that we sung about. And He, there in the depths of his poverty, not only had His material wealth stripped from Him, but He, pure, sinless, of perfection in mankind, there he became sin, simply for you.
You have no Godly sorrow because of that? You've got no feeling because of the material world that you've been wrapped up in, and taught by your parents, and your forefathers, that that is the thing and that is the important thing. Can you feel no remorse in your soul, because Jesus, the best this world ever had, became sin for you? You don't have any feeling toward what you are? You can't weep and mourn toward God because you are a sinner? And because Jesus had to become what you are, in order that you might have eternal life. Is there no feeling within any person that hasn't been saved as to what Jesus did? There can't be unless you know the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and you can't get saved if you've never heard the Gospel, and just went to some friend somewhere and heard about what ever you want to sing about, outside of Jesus.
We're living in a dangerous time. You can get more feeling and emotion in a singing where the death burial and resurrection of Christ is never mentioned, than you can with the pure unadulterated Gospel of Christ.
But if you're looking for Godly sorrow, you can look to the cross. You can see him hanging there, in your place. You can see, you can stand down there with the crowd, and you can say, "If I'd have been there I'd have said take Him down." If I'd have been there I would have said "Take Him down." You wouldn't have either. They didn't say that. They stood there in disbelief. They stood there and they let Him die. Because they were helpless to do anything about it. A lost sinner cannot do anything to help themselves. But Jesus can. God can. His Spirit is the agent in salvation. His Spirit accompanies the Gospel message. His Spirit lets your heart know that he died for you. His Spirit lets you know that he became sin for you. His Spirit lets you know that you're dying and you're dead, and there's no escape for you, unless you come to God in repentance and faith. His Spirit does the wooing of your being toward God. His Spirit does the saving of your soul and the sinner here today cannot do anything for his own salvation, but feel sorry for himself, and beg God for mercy. And he can't do that until he feels the flames of Hell upon him.
Sinner, the riches of Glory became as dross in the eyes of your Savior when he looked at you, in time, and here's what He did for you sinner. He, in the riches of eternal Glory, said "I will turn my back on that, for the likes of that sinner down there at Fellowship Church house, on the 17th of March 1985. I will forsake all of this, for him. That's what he did for you. He forsook that. Not only did he forsake that, but step by step, down the ladder of degradation, He came to become sin for you. Sin killed Him. Not His, but yours. Your sin killed him sinner. My sin killed him. And the day that I come in reality to that fact, there was nothing left in this world of any importance to me. I found trouble and sorrow. The pains of Hell got hold of me, just like they did David, and life meant nothing to me. I was in anguish and sorrow and deep trouble, and the only relief I ever got was when God saved my soul.
Will you come sinner. Forget your material ambitions and come to the Lord, that you might really start to live. Let's stand together and sing. How is it with your soul? Have you been born again by the Spirit of God. Are you lost and separated from God? Do you know where you stand with the Lord? You must do something toward how you feel, and you must, if you are going to live in Heaven, and enjoy the riches of eternity with God..(End of Tape)
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