Complete Sermon Notes
How Much of God do you Want?
A.W. Tozer said, “I WANT THE PRESENCE OF GOD HIMSELF, OR I DON’T WANT ANYTHING AT ALL TO DO WITH RELIGION.”
INTRODUCTION: Most are spiritually MALNOURISHED. They are not DESPERATE for More of God
“I would like to buy three dollars worth of God, please. Not enough to explode my soul or disturb my sleep, but just enough to equal a cup of warm milk, or a snooze in the sunshine…I want ecstasy, not transformation. I want the warmth of the womb, not a new birth. I want a pound of the eternal in a paper sack. I would like to buy three pounds of God, please” (Wilbur Reese).
- Galatians 5:17 – The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other… WHO DO YOU OBEY?
KEY: Most drift from God, not because He fails them, or because the Word of God proves to be untrue, but because of the love of this world.
There is always a cost – retirement, marriage, raising kids, seeking God – The price we pay reveals the value.
- The devil tries to keep us asleep spiritually: “ssshhh”…
…It’s not that big of deal; everyone is doing it. People will laugh at you.
Matt. 22:34 But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” 37 Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”
- “You shall love” means we have a choice.
1. Love is the highest standard we can measure – it demonstrates value and worth.
2. It’s a choice, not a feeling. Free Will is involved.
- Coat Hanger – this is so important that everything else hangs on it.
1. How we treat others reveals how much we love God.
- Not separate areas, but completeness – all are connected.
1. Heart – the center of things / Soul – possessing life / Mind – thinking
~ “All the water in the world, no matter how hard it tries, can never sink a ship unless it gets inside. All the evil influence of the world, no matter how hard it tries, can never sink a Christian’s soul unless it gets inside.” ~
Here is how it gets inside: 1 Corinthians 10:6 Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. 7 And do not become idolaters as were some of them. As it is written, ‘The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play’. 8 Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell; 9 nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed by serpents; 10 nor complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer. 11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.
- IDOLATRY – ‘The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play’.
- SEXUAL IMMORALITY – joining themselves to the ungodly.
- COMPLAINING: Numbers 21:4-5 [NIV] “…the people grew impatient on the way; they spoke against God and against Moses, and said, ‘Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? There is no bread! There is no water! And we detest this miserable food’!”
The Hunger Test – Remember – hunger is a sign of health.
1. HEART: Are you hungry for humility?
- The heart is either hard or soft.
- Spiritual Pride is deadly – “The pride of your heart has deceived you.”
Example – Muhammad Ali
I’m just passionate…no, you’re arrogant.
I’m contending for the truth…no, you’re fostering division.
I’m very serious about my faith…no, you’re very prideful.
“Without brokenness, we are all a danger to God’s people” (Facebook post).
“Without humility you cannot worship God – “In vain they worship Me.”
How Much of God do you Want?
“Pride must die in you, or nothing of heaven can live in you” (Andrew Murray).
- Isaiah 55:6-7 (NKJV) – “Seek the Lord while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the Lord, And He will have mercy on him; And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.”
Humility returns to God …
Proverbs 3:5-6 (NKJV) “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding [that’s prideful]; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.”
2. MIND: Are you hungry for healthy spiritual food?
Isaiah 55:6-7 (NKJV) – “Seek the Lord while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts…
The Hateful 8 – Rated R for strong bloody violence, a scene of violent sexual content, language and some graphic nudity.
No wonder the church is dying, pastors are powerless, and the world scoffs at us: “Without the heartbeat of HOLINESS, the body of Christ will resemble a CORPSE.”
E.M. Bounds said, “The sermon cannot rise in its life-giving forces above the man. Dead men give out dead sermons, and dead sermons kill. Everything depends on the spiritual character of the preacher.”
Mind over Matter – the brain responds to the mind
- LIE – you do not control our actions as much as we think we do.
You are not a product of your environment. You may be influenced by it, but it doesn’t need to control you.
- The brain is neuroplastic – meaning it can change – Lamentations 3, “The Lord’s mercies…are renewed every morning,” and Romans 12, “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”
KEY: If we understood just how powerful and life-changing our thoughts are, we would never think another destructive thought again.
Ephesians 4:31-32 says to “let all [GET RID OF] bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor [HARSH WORDS], and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice [REMOVE THE DESIRE TO DO EVIL]. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”
CHANGE YOUR MIND or it will damage your relationship with God & your health.
3. SOUL: Are you hungry for heaven?
Why don’t many truly seek God? They don’t want to…
“I just don’t feel like seeking Him.” But we must first discipline ourselves before desire comes. We must first empty ourselves in order to be filled. We must first obey before receiving the blessing. We must first break before there is restoration. We must first pray before there is transformation. We must praise Him before there is peace. And we must first seek Him if we are to truly find Him.
HOW MUCH OF GOD DO YOU WANT?
- The fire of God does not fall on an empty altar: “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God” (Romans 12:1).
J.C. Ryle (1816-1900) in his book on holiness said that we must stand guard as a soldier on enemy ground. The problem is that many love the world and have a hard time separating. They believe in heaven but they don’t truly long for it. They “say” that they fear God but they don’t live like it. They indulge temptation rather than fight it. They enjoy sin rather than confront it. And they compromise rather than conquer.
FINALLY, it may be that one is not genuinely saved. They may have “religion” but not a true “relationship” with the living God.
Isaiah 55:6-7, “Seek the Lord while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the Lord, And He will have mercy on him; And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.”