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Sep12SunSeptember 12, 2021
When thinking about the power of the Lord’s prayer it is important to understand that disobedience leads to God turning His face from us. That means God no longer hears us. Isaiah 1:15 “When you spread out your hands in prayer, I hide my eyes from you; even when you offer many prayers, I am not listening. Your hands are full of blood!” When God turns His face, we become powerless and our enemies prevail against us. Most people read the New Testament and expect everything that is written to apply to them. They think this because they attend church even though they have disobeyed and followed other gospels. This is why it is imperative to read the Old Testament to understand God, His expectations and what happens when we believe and obey and what happens when we refuse to obey God’s word and go our own way. Take the time to read the whole chapter but also read Leviticus 26. Deuteronomy 28:1 “If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. 2 All these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God.” We then see what happens when we obey. Deuteronomy 28:15 “However, if you do not obey the Lord your God and do not carefully follow all his commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come on you and overtake you.” And again we see what happens when we disobey and go our own way. The church you see today is the disobedient Israel you read about in the Old Testament. The church you see today falls on the cursed side. When Jesus said to Peter Matthew 16:18 “And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven,” it is understood that in order for this to take place we must obey and follow God’s word wholeheartedly. When we do not obey, this does not happen.
Today truth is nowhere to be found. Isaiah 59:12 “For our offenses are many in your sight, and our sins testify against us. Our offenses are ever with us, and we acknowledge our iniquities (sadly most people don’t): 13 rebellion and treachery against the Lord, turning our backs on our God, inciting revolt and oppression, uttering lies our hearts have conceived. 14 So justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the streets, honesty cannot enter. 15 Truth is nowhere to be found, and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey. The Lord looked and was displeased that there was no justice.” Daniel warned us this would happen. Daniel 8:12 “Because of rebellion, the Lord’s people and the daily sacrifice were given over to it. It prospered in everything it did, and truth was thrown to the ground.” Paul told us 2 Thessalonians 2:4 “He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God. 9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.” Jesus told us Matthew 24:21 “For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again. 22 “If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. 23 At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. 24 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you ahead of time.” Today the church has not heeded this warning and has listened to these false teachers. They go their own way and everyone does as they see fit yet there is only one way. John 14:6 “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
What was prophesied has already taken place. Amos 8:2 “Then the Lord said to me, “The time is ripe for my people Israel; I will spare them no longer. 11 “The days are coming,” declares the Sovereign Lord, “when I will send a famine through the land— not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the Lord. 12 People will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the Lord, but they will not find it.” Not only will there be famine, but teachers of truth will be hidden. Isaiah 30:20 “Although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes you will see them.” Even though this verse is a promise, it shows us that until this promise happens, our teachers will be hidden, therefore truth is also hidden. God also said Amos 9:4 “I will keep my eye on them for harm and not for good.” Amos 6:1 “Woe to you who are complacent in Zion, and to you who feel secure on Mount Samaria.” Amos 7:8 “Then the Lord said, “Look, I am setting a plumb line among my people Israel; I will spare them no longer. 9 “The high places of Isaac will be destroyed and the sanctuaries of Israel will be ruined; with my sword I will rise against the house of Jeroboam.” Amos 6:8 “The Sovereign Lord has sworn by himself—the Lord God Almighty declares: I abhor the pride of Jacob and detest his fortresses; I will deliver up the city and everything in it.”
This is why it is so important to understand who God is and to grasp what happens to us when we do not obey His commands. The good news is that there is hope. The verse that told us teachers would be hidden is a promise that there will be a time when teachers of truth will be hidden no longer. True instruction will come from these teachers. Malachi 2:5 “My covenant was with him, a covenant of life and peace, and I gave them to him; this called for reverence and he revered me and stood in awe of my name. 6 True instruction was in his mouth and nothing false was found on his lips. He walked with me in peace and uprightness, and turned many from sin. 7 “For the lips of a priest ought to preserve knowledge, because he is the messenger of the Lord Almighty and people seek instruction from his mouth.” Not only will teachers of truth be revealed, but we also know that when this happens it means God has turned His face back to shining on us. Isaiah 54:6 “The Lord will call you back as if you were a wife deserted and distressed in spirit—a wife who married young, only to be rejected,” says your God. 7 “For a brief moment I abandoned you, but with deep compassion I will bring you back. 8 In a surge of anger I hid my face from you for a moment, but with everlasting kindness I will have compassion on you,” says the Lord your Redeemer.”
Today if you hear His voice, don’t wait; repent and live! Psalm 95:6 “Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; 7 for He is our God and we are the people of His pasture, the flock under His care.” Even though there is a famine of hearing the word of the Lord, by God’s amazing grace some will hear and be saved. Don’t base your security on the promises of man because Jesus when asked said Luke 13:24 “Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to. 25 Once the owner of the house gets up and closes the door, you will stand outside knocking and pleading, ‘Sir, open the door for us.’ “But he will answer, ‘I don’t know you or where you come from.’ 26 “Then you will say, ‘We ate and drank with you, and you taught in our streets.’ 27 “But he will reply, ‘I don’t know you or where you come from. Away from me, all you evildoers!’ 28 “There will be weeping there, and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but you yourselves thrown out. 29 People will come from east and west and north and south, and will take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God.” You do not want to find out you have been deceived after you die. Don’t assume your eternal life is a done deal because you go to church and said a little prayer; make sure of your salvation. Jesus also said, Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!”
God gave a promise to David and said there would always be a remnant but we must follow Jesus wholeheartedly. Amos 5:14 “Seek good, not evil, that you may live. Then the Lord God Almighty will be with you, just as you say he is. 15 Hate evil, love good; maintain justice in the courts. Perhaps the Lord God Almighty will have mercy on the remnant of Joseph.” Ezekiel 18:30 “Therefore, you Israelites, I will judge each of you according to your own ways, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall. 31 Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, people of Israel? 32 For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!”
Jesus said Mark 1:15 “The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” The church then will do as Jesus did. Amos 9:11 “In that day “I will restore David’s fallen shelter—I will repair its broken walls and restore its ruins— and will rebuild it as it used to be.” Matthew 4:23 “Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people. 24 News about him spread all over Syria, and people brought to him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed; and he healed them.” Matthew 8:16 “When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to him, and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick. 17 This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: “He took up our infirmities and bore our diseases.” Ezekiel 33:11 “As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, people of Israel?”