Reaching the unseen

REACHING THE UNSEEN IN 2016

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REACHING THE WORLD FOR JESUS

May God bless the Pastors and Bible Teachers all over the world, we thank God that Sermons to the World is now reaching 148 countries and all 50 States and The District of Columbia in the U.S.

MISSION

Mission: To be a resource to Pastors and Bible teachers in spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world. – Sermons to the World

VISION STATEMENT

Vision: To reach the world on the internet to fulfill the command of Jesus in Matthew 28:19-20 – “to go into all the world and teach all nations”.

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We welcome you to see our New Website http://sermonstotheworld.org.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

THE WILL OF GOD CONCERNING YOU

VIDEO LINKS TO THIS SERMON





THE WILL OF GOD CONCERNING YOU
BY PASTOR MARK TAYLOR
“In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” ( I Thessalonians 5:18)
God expects us to live a life of thanksgiving rather than offering limited thanks. And we must never lose sight of God’s goodness, and God’s hand at work in everything we face. 

Why is it that so many people have chosen to be negative and have an unthankful attitude towards God and others?  

1.  Possibly it is because of the way people have been raised in their childhood and the many disappointments they have  faced during their life times.  One word seems to sum up those experiences and that is rejection.  Possibly, the unthankful attitude is a result of feeling that our friends, our family, our wives or husbands, our children, or even God has rejected us.  When we feel that way it is hard to give thanks.  

Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ experienced all those feelings, yet He remained thankful.  “He was despised and rejected—a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief.  We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care. (Isaiah 53:3).  Yes, this was a prophecy that the Lord knew about 740 years before He chose to come to Earth and die for us.  He knew that not only the people of His life time would reject Him, but that you and I would reject Him, but He came anyway.  He overcame His feelings of rejection by fulfilling His purpose and demonstrating His love for you and me.  “For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:7-8).  And even though the very people He came to save rejected Him, many others were saved and blessed by Him.  “He came into the very world He created, but the world didn’t receive Him.  He came to His own people, and even they rejected Him.  But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God.” (John 1: 10-12)  How did he remain thankful and positive?  He knew that this was the will of God for His life and He focused upon His Father’s love for Him.

2.  Perhaps the reason some are unthankful is that they do not think that life has been fair to them, or maybe even that God has not been fair.  God's idea of fairness is different than that of the world.
God's idea of fairness is based on love and righteousness, not on equality.  A real Christian's relationship with God is based on trusting that He is in charge of our lives (because we have given it to Him) and that He working on our behalf out of love for us.

3.  Perhaps another reason people are unthankful is that they view themselves as victims.  The victim mentality seeks sympathy.  Often people are not enthusiastic about giving up their victim role  because they fear it will cut off the attention they receive from their friends and loved ones.  Taking on the victim role leads to bitterness and unthankfulness.  This is not "God's will concerning you".

"Get rid of all bitterness, passion, and anger. No more shouting or insults, no more hateful feelings of any sort. Instead, be kind and tender-hearted to one another, and forgive one another, as God has forgiven you through Christ." (EPHESIANS 4:31-32).

In every situation, we are to have an attitude of thankfulness toward God.  Have an “attitude of gratitude”.  How in the world is that possible?  First, recognize that although not everything is good in itself, God can and will use everything in our lives for our ultimate blessing.

God is good, all the time, but life isn’t.  God allows, (not causes), circumstances that ultimately can result in something good if we let Him work.  I don’t personally believe that God causes any evil of any kind, but He can turn bad circumstances into a blessing for us.  As Christians who love God, we should take the attitude that since God is good, then this bad circumstance can bring about some further good in or through my life, or else God would not have allowed it.  Bad things are going to happen to everyone, regardless if they are a child of God or not.  But God is very concerned about His children when bad things do happen to them.

Giving thanks reminds us that God uses all our circumstances to make us more like Him   “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.” (Romans 8:28-29). 

God has a good and wise and loving purpose for everything He allows into our lives, even pain and suffering. We can give thanks in the knowledge that He loves us and will never permit us any pain unless the ultimate benefit is worth the cost. That doesn’t mean we can understand His ways. We may have no idea how anything could be worth this much pain. But God’s Word tells us that it will be worth it.  “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance (determination). Perseverance (determination) must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”  (James 1:2-4).  If you allow God to help you, your difficulties will make you a stronger person.

There are times we cause our own problems.  This includes health issues, financial difficulties, and relationship failures.  Certainly this is not “the will of God” for you.  Sometimes the sins and failures of others cause us hurt and hardships.  Neither are the pains others inflict upon us “God’s will”.  All of us have free will to choose positive or negative behaviors that both affect us and others.  This is why the Lord Jesus Christ shed His precious blood for you and I that we might be forgiven and start over when we make wrong choices or others cause bad things to happen to us.  “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins, and cleanse us from all sin.” ( I John 1:9).
There are times when there is no explanation of "why" bad things are happing to us.  Some people are born with disabilities or handicaps and we do not know "why".  Our response can be negative, when bad things happen to us.  But that is not “God’s will concerning you”.  Our response should be thankfulness.  You may ask: “How can I be thankful for the losses in my life, the illness in my body, the rejection I feel?”  It is not easy.  
But you can start by:
Thanking God for the people you have left in your life that love you; 
Looking around and see that your health could be worse and thank Him for the years of good health you have already received; 
You can look at the homeless, the prisoners in jail, those bound by the chains of drug and alcohol addiction; and those in war torn countries around the world and thank God for your freedom and comfort;
You can thank the Lord that you have heard the Gospel and God has chosen you to love Him and live with Him forever and that He loves you and wants a relationship with you.
Our Lord did not promise us a life without pain or difficulties.  He said this:
“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” 
(John 16:33).
Do you want to do God’s will today?  His will is that you be thankful.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

IF GOD PUTS YOU ON HOLD - DON'T HANG UP


VIDEO LINKS TO THIS SERMON


“If God Puts You On Hold - Don’t Hang Up”
(A Sermon on God’s Timing)
by Pastor Mark Taylor
 “Those who wait for the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles;  they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31) 

Most of us have called a place of business and have been asked the question: “Can you hold?”
or a pre-recorded message says: “Please hold, we will are speaking to someone else.  Your wait time is approximately 15 minutes or less.”

I want you to know that you are not just a customer  when you dial God’s number. You are one of God’s chosen and He hears your prayers the moment they are prayed. There are many promises in the Bible that reminds us of that promise.  “And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.” (Psalm 50:15).   “Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” (Jeremiah 33:3).  Our Lord Jesus promised this to those who love Him and serve Him: “You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.  (John 15:16).

When you pray, God is not busy on His prayer line listening to someone else.  He is listening to you.  But sometimes He puts us on hold while He is working on our prayer request.  God is never in a hurry, but He is always on time.  While you are waiting, God is working.

When God appeared to Abraham in Genesis 18, it was with the intention to tell Abraham that he and Sarah were to finally have a son. Unfortunately, Abraham was 99 years old at the time, and Sarah was 89 years old. 
Both knew that it was already too late. They knew that it was physiologically impossible for them to have a child. The irony of the situation was not lost on Abraham and Sarah because they both burst out laughing saying, “God, it’s simply too late!  But God kept His promise and gave them a son, Isaac.

Mary and Martha watched their brother, Lazarus, become sick and die  (John 11). They had sent desperate messages to Jesus to come and help but He did not. Four days after Lazarus’ burial, Jesus appeared.  Out of desperation, they cried, “Lord, if you had been here, our brother would not have died.”  The Lord answered their prayers.  He was right on time:  40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” 41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. 42 And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me.” 43 Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” 44 And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with grave clothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.” 
 Lazarus lived again.  You and I, and all of our loved ones in Heaven, are alive today because of the Lord’s power over death.  “And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die”.  (John 11:26).

While we are on “hold”,  God sees the big picture.  In Isaiah 55:8-9 God reminds us of a fundamental truth. He says, “My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways . . . As the heavens are higher that the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” This tells me that God operates on a different thought level. He has a vantage view that I am incapable of having.

2 Peter 3:8 says, that “with the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.” Obviously, God runs by a different clock. He functions on a totally different time scale. His time is not our time.

In Jeremiah 29:11, God makes a wonderful promise. “For I know the plans I have for you; plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” You see, God functions at a very different level of intentionality. Unlike you and I, he has only good plans. This is further corroborated by Romans 8:28. Paul writes, “We know that in everything, God works for the good of those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.” This forces a conviction upon us that says that whatever happens to us fits a design. God is in control of our lives and He alone knows what is truly for our best.  Armed with this truth, we can now turn to the most important lesson of faith. Isaiah 40:31 states: “Those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall rise up on wings like eagles. They shall run and not be wearied; they will walk and not faint.”

The question is “What do we do while, we are on hold?”  What do we do while we are waiting upon the Lord?  Hang in there…don’t hang up. Too often we are impatient when a business puts us on hold, we just hang up. Remember the words of Scripture, “Faithful is He that calls you who also will do it” (I Thessalonians. 5:24). 
Believe that God is working on your behalf.  He is busy while you are waiting.  
While you are on hold, look at yourself and see if there is a reason that God has you on hold.  Is it possible that there are known sins in your life that God is waiting on you to turn away from.  “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear; but your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, that He will not hear” (Isaiah 59:1,2).  Sin will keep you on hold for a long time.  “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the LORD will not hear me” (Psalm 66:18).  While you are waiting confess your sins to the Lord and ask Him to give you power over them.  “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us of all our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (I John 1:9). 

While we are on “hold”, we need to be more serious about our prayer and conversation with the Lord about our problems.   When the disciples could not cast a demon out of a child, they asked the Lord Jesus why.   “Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?  So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”  (Matthew 17: 19-22).

Finally, remember and remind yourself that He loves you and is listening to you.  “I love the Lord because he hears my voice and my prayer for mercy.” (Psalm 116:1).  If God puts you on hold, don’t hang up!!

(For more video and written sermons by Pastor Mark Taylor go to: