Posts Tagged ‘ War ’

Sermon: The Great War – John 16:5-15

I preached this past Sunday, June 30, 2019. I would have uploaded this sooner, but I am sure you understand technological issues and upload errors …

I barely used notes, so there is barely enough to read. If you want the full text, then listen to the message by clicking here or listening below!

I actually started reading from John 15:26 to help with context, in case you want to have your Bible ready. Other references are Genesis 2, 2 Corinthians 7:6-11, Revelation 20, Ephesians 6:12, and Matthew 28:18-20.

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John 16:5-15 (15:26-16:15): The Great War and the Counselor, Comforter, and Helper

World War 2:
Propaganda: “All Germans are evil!”
Truth: “Many Germans helped in secret to undermine the Nazis.”
Reality: Many Germans were shunned, despised, mistreated, and distrusted after the war for “wanting to kill all non-Germans, especially Jews!”

Read 15:26-16:6

        John 13:36-14:7 – Peter & Thomas asked
        For Peter: Going to cross, “You will follow me”
        For Thomas: “We don’t know where you are going. How can we know the way?” They did not understand He was leaving this world behind. They essentially were asking “What place on Earth are you going to prepare to kick out Rome?” Not “You are leaving? What do you mean? What place is it that we are unable to follow you to?”
The disciples were confused, scared, and worried. “He seems to be speaking nonsense. Is He leaving us? He keeps talking about dying and leaving us!”
After Thomas’ question, Jesus promises the Holy Spirit will come, which leads to …

Read 16:7

        The Holy Spirit –the Counselor, the Comforter, the Helper – would not be sent permanently until the Son and Father sent Him from Heaven.

Now think back to the first time a helper was given to Man: Genesis 2:20-25. No good helper was found, so God put the man into a deep sleep and created a woman from his rib. Then we have verses 24 and 25. [Read] We have the establishment of marriage (v. 24), and it says they were without shame (v. 25).
What does this have to do with our new Helper?

Read 16:8-14

        The Holy Spirit has three major jobs:

  1. Convict the world of sin
  2. Point to Jesus
  3. Reveal the true World War raging since Creation (Genesis 3)

Let us look at these:

  1. Convict the world of sin:
    1. Romans 3:23 reminds us that we are all guilty of sin.
    2. The Counselor tells us we are messed up beyond hope: We all have essentially punched God in the face and claimed innocence.
      1. 10 Commandments: How we have all have fallen short
    3. 2 Corinthians 7:6-11: Godly grief (of sin) leads to repentance
  2. Point to Jesus:
    1. How then can we be saved? The work of Jesus!
    2. The Comforter shows that we are made righteous through the only True Way to Life (14:6): Believing in the vicarious work of Christ’s death on the cross for the forgiveness of all of our sins!
    3. If teachings about the Holy Spirit do not glorify Jesus Christ, is it really from Him?
  3. Reveal the true War:
    1. This war started in the Garden, with “that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan” (Revelation 20:2), and that will only end upon Christ’s return, thus fulfilling v. 13.
    2. This war is spiritual in nature: Ephesians 6:12.
      1. Do not retaliate against fellow image-bearers!
    3. So how do we fight this war?

Read 16:14-15

        The Spirit of Truth, the Helper, reminds us of Matthew 28:18-20 (Great Commission)

        We fight this war (that was won at the cross!) through the power of the Helper, in a world that says Christians and God are bad and evil.

VerseD: Ephesians 6:12

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
Ephesians 6:12, ESV

People are not your greatest enemy. The forces behind them – demons, the Devil, evil spirits – are your enemy.

Do not lash out at those who wrong or hurt you. Love and pray for them, pray against the spiritual forces of evil, in Jesus’ name.

VerseD: Romans 8:18

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.
Romans 8:18, ESV

First World problems? Third World problems?

Persecution? Annoyances?

War? Feuds? Squabbles?

Whatever afflicts us, let us remember that we are either being transformed or being used to transform for Christ’s glory.

Weekend Words & Sunday Stanzas – 03/22/2015

Find the peace of wisdom and avoid the torment of foolishness, and get started with Proverbial Thought!

You might also think of this passage after reading the poem today:

What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin lies dead. I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died. The very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me. For sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. 15 For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.

So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.
Romans 7:7-25, ESV

It can be tormenting to live with such a dichotomy inside!

Yet, we know there is help!

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4: 4-7

Suddenly we find ourselves in this … peaceful torment … which leads to our hope:

For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved.
Romans 8:22-24a

Praise His name!

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a peaceful torment

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my flesh and soul are at war within me
i cannot deal with it
although the Blood of Jesus set me free
this my flesh would omit
and though He has restored me completely
my flesh will not commit
yet that pushes me towards the Deity
to trust in the Spirit
and the anguish my spirit feels daily
is a peaceful torment
for with His Spirit working within me
His Peace helps deal with it

When Life Roughs You Up

Why do you say, O Jacob,
    and speak, O Israel,
“My way is hidden from the Lord,
    and my right is disregarded by my God”?
Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
    his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint,
    and to him who has no might he increases strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary,
    and young men shall fall exhausted;
but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
    they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
    they shall walk and not faint.
Isaiah 40:27-31, ESV

I am not sure about the rest of you, but the last few weeks have been not the easiest.

We have heard of planes disappearing, countries invading each other and seceding from each other, and problems (still) in the Middle East.

My wife and I have had many car problems (all of which were fixed for around $40 thanks to a great and godly friend!), we have heard a friend’s mom may colon cancer (or just some big problems), and my mom was diagnosed with lung cancer.

There is a lot wrong with this world.

Yet I take stock in the promises of God, that, as quoted above, He is in control and does not grow weary or run away. He understands what is going on, and He is there to strengthen us in it all.

When we trust in Christ, the power that flows from the Cross through the Holy Spirit to the glory of the Father, we can live in His promises:

I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:13

But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
John 14:26-27

There are a lot of problems in this world, but our Lord is in control. We may not understand everything that is happening, and we many not like everything that is happening, but “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)