What Hinders You?
HINDRANCE – “Resistance, Delay, or Obstruction.”
NEXT WEEK – How God Can Use Your Past (even though you were hindered).
The past few sermons focused on hindrances in our walk with God – THE PRIMARY HINDRANCE IS NOT BEING FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT.
~ The young man knew the Psalm, but the old man knew the Shepherd.
ACTS 8:26 Now an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying, “Arise and go toward the south along the road which goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is desert. 27 So he arose and went. And behold, a man of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under Candace the queen of the Ethiopians, who had charge of all her treasury, and had come to Jerusalem to worship, 28 was returning. And sitting in his chariot, he was reading Isaiah the prophet. 29 Then the Spirit said to Philip, “Go near and overtake this chariot.” 30 So Philip ran to him, and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah, and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31 And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?”
What hinders us from following God? Obedience – “So he arose and went” –
Religion vs. relationship: “had come to Jerusalem to worship.”
What hinders others from following God? “How can I, unless someone guides me?”
~ Not many laborers.
~ The laborers often don’t know what they’re saying or doing.
You can tell me who has been on Dancing with the Stars, and the current plot of Game of Thrones, and all the details of American Crime, but when someone ask about God WE say, “Talk to my Pastor.”
Study God the way you study sports and entertainment [devotion of time and attention to acquiring knowledge]
We study for tests, for promotions, for compensation … BUT not for God.
SIMPLE PLAN: 1] Structure your day around Him – The Word [20+MINS], Prayer, Worship, Service. 2] Use down time to your advantage. 3] Remove meaningless time zappers.
It’s boring – WHY is it boring? Because you’ve been feeding on the things of the world so long that now they taste good.
And he asked Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 The place in the Scripture which he read was this: “He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; And as a lamb before its shearer is silent, So He opened not His mouth. 33 In His humiliation His justice was taken away, And who will declare His generation? For His life is taken from the earth.” 34 So the eunuch answered Philip and said, “I ask you, of whom does the prophet say this, of himself or of some other man?” 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him.
When you study, you know the answer – 2 + 2.
36 Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, “See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?” 37 Then Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.”
No Plan B. Not half-hearted [wavering].
And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” 38 So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him…
“You can be baptized and not know Christ, but you cannot know Christ and not want to be baptized.”
FEAR: Going before people – rather be seen leaving a bar than a church.
SELF-IMAGE: People will think I’m getting carried away.
IGNORANCE [lacking knowledge]: “I need to clean up my life first.”
UNCOMMITTED: “I don’t want to get that serious.”
I DON’T WANT TO GO TO HELL – It’s not the saving mechanism.
I’M DOING IT FOR MY ____________
What Hinders You from being baptized right now?
It’s cold – so was that water. I don’t have dry clothes – neither did the eunuch. My family is not here – neither was his.
During the closing worship, check your kids out and come back.
Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him.
To “herald, explain, publish, announce” – a king would have a “heralder.”
Dr. Lockeridge said these words in 1976, “He’s enduringly strong. He’s entirely sincere. He’s eternally steadfast. He’s immortally graceful. He’s imperially powerful. He’s impartially merciful. He’s God’s Son. He’s the sinner’s saviour. He’s the centerpiece of civilization…He’s unique. He’s unparalleled. He’s unprecedented. He’s supreme. He’s pre-eminent. He’s the grandest idea in literature. He’s the highest personality in philosophy…The Pharisees couldn’t stand Him, but they found out they couldn’t stop Him. Pilate couldn’t find any fault in Him. Herod couldn’t kill Him. Death couldn’t handle Him and the grave couldn’t hold Him.” THAT’S MY KING!
ISAIAH – 700 YEARS PRIOR: “He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; And as a lamb before its shearer is silent, So He opened not His mouth. 33 In His humiliation His justice was taken away, And who will declare His generation? For His life is taken from the earth.”
Put the Pic on the screen –
Communion – “GOD, take me back to Calvary.”
The innocence and the gentleness. No defense…no blaming…no excusing.
It was not “just” – fair – yet He humbly endured the cross – His creation is slaughtering.
Where were His advocates – “who will declare it?” Declare the beautiful story of …
His physical life was taken – so we can live. Without the shedding of blood…
“IT PLEASED THE FATHER TO BRUISE THE SON” – it’s satisfied the debt of sin.
THE DRAW BRIDGE
What Hinders You in participating in communion?
2 Hindrances – Unbelief or Rebellion.
1] What must we do to be saved? “Repent and believe – and be baptized.”
2] The rebell must give up his rebellion: ON LINE LISTENER: “I came across a sermon with the Bible verse from Jeremiah 29:13 and it was like it driving a nail right thru me. I got down on my knees, repented of my sin, and cried out to God to help me. I gave him everything.”
Pass out the “Reminders” ___________
Isaiah 53 (NKJV) 4 Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
Oh GOD…Show me Calvary:
I went astray, but you brought me back.
I rejected You, but you never rejected me.
You were beaten so I could have peace, humiliated so I could be lifted up.
Look at the magnitude of what we are doing?
Do you know the Psalm, or do you know the Shepherd?