Guest Speaker – Rev Col Stringer
Acts 20:22 “And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there” (KJV)
Acts 20:24 “But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy …” (KJV)
How do we stay in ministry for as long as Paul did and still be able to say, ‘I finished my course with joy’?
Acts 20:19 “Serving the Lord with all humility of mind …” (KJV)
The world’s view is, ‘it’s all about me; pride, ego, what’s in this for me’.
Pride = haughty, arrogant, inflated estimation of self, self-focussed, self-promotion, self-made
James 4:6 “But he gives more grace. Wherefore he says, God resists the proud, but gives grace unto the humble” (KJV)
The book of James is a book of practical wisdom – which is good because we are not designed to work it all out for ourselves. God gives MORE grace to the humble. He RESISTS the proud (He ACTIVELY fights against the proud).
Matt 11:29 “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls” (KJV)
The Kingdom of God operates by humility
There are laws by which this world operates – eg the Law of Gravity. These laws operate for everybody. So, too, the Kingdom of God operates by certain laws, one being The Law of Humility. The world operates by a completely different system – iphones, ipads.
2 Tim 3:2 “For men shall be lovers of their own selves …” (KJV)
The world is pushing us in the direction of selfishness. But, God gives grace to the humble. He can only promote those that are humble before Him. Humbling ourselves does not mean grovelling but ‘not thinking more highly of ourselves than we aught’ (Rom 12:3).
True humility is total dependence on God
Matt 23:12 “But those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted: (NLT)
We are all born selfish. We need to learn to walk in humility.
Prov 13:10 “Only by pride cometh contention …” (KJV)
The original sin was pride. The devil didn’t hate God; he wanted to be like Him and decided that he would raise himself up. He thought he could make himself equal to God. Pride is the devil’s #1 weapon.
John 15:5 “I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing” (KJV)
Jesus says ‘without Me, you can do nothing’. In this Scripture, Jesus is talking about access to God and all His goodness. Without Jesus, we have no access to the Father or His grace, His provision and power, His forgiveness, His wisdom. We cannot even enter the Kingdom of God without Jesus.
1 Pet 5:5-7 “… and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time. Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you” (KJV)
We are to cast our cares upon Him. It is arrogant to think that we can handle our own lives without Him. God does a much better job of promoting us than we do of ourselves.
Gal 5:16-23 “This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh … Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like … But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance” (KJV)
There are works of the flesh and fruit of the Spirit: we have to put in effort to do works; but fruit is produced automatically by the tree. Fruit is produced as a consequence of being connected to the vine. The real person that each of us is – that sprit-person that lives inside this body – is full of the Spirit’s fruit.
Real faith is simply believing God’s Word
Every need that we will ever have has already been met through Jesus.
Faith is a rest; not striving and stressing
The Father’s acceptance of us is not based on what we have done, but on what Jesus did for us
This is the Gospel of Grace: He paid the price – ONCE, FOR ALL. This Gospel is received by faith, in humility.
Mark 6:1, 5 “And he went out from thence, and came into his own country; and his disciples follow him … And he could there do no mighty work” (KJV)
The people recognized the power of God, but pride stopped them from receiving.
Mark 6:53-56 “And when they had passed over, they came into the land of Gennesaret, and drew to the shore. And when they were come out of the ship, straightway they knew him, and ran through that whole region round about, and began to carry about in beds those that were sick, where they heard he was. And whithersoever he entered, into villages, or cities, or country, they laid the sick in the streets, and besought him that they might touch if it were but the border of his garment: and as many as touched him were made whole” (KJV)
The people recognized Him and everyone received His grace and received healing.
Who is the centre of our life?
Do we really surrender all?
True humility is just trusting God and making Him the centre of our lives – being TOTALLY dependent on Him
Our way of doing something may not be wrong, but is it God’s way? Being right or wrong is not the same, or as important, as God’s way. What is not working in our lives? Let’s ask Him if it is His way.
Trust and obey and get out of the way
Matt 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (KJV)