Grace Bible Church
Robert R. McLaughlin
Speaker: Pastor Joe Sugrue
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
“This day I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that just as I have been with Moses, I will be with you.”
O Lord, Thou art my God;
I will exalt Thee, I will give thanks to Thy name;
For Thou hast worked wonders,
Plans formed long ago, with perfect faithfulness.
“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.”
It doesn’t matter what you do, you can not promote yourself!
When he uses the word “voice” to make an issue out of the message rather than the personality.
Ministries are only a voice by which God chooses to communicate His word, God looks for prepared voices.
Wilderness in the Bible represents a place of separation. The wilderness is a perfect set up for a place of separation from religion. There is no religion in the wilderness!
In the desert there is no temple there and no real activity so John is free to preach and teach.
The message must be given in a place of separation where there is no legalism. When you get enough doctrine you will leave the religious place.
John was a voice crying, he wanted all to take notice, he wanted to get their attention with his message about the coming Christ, PRO 8:1.
Does not wisdom call,
And understanding lift up her voice?
John proves when a person has a message or a heart filled with doctrine, God will bring the people to him without gimmicks, tricks, programs, P.R. work, etc., just God.
He came to rectify the mistakes of people concerning the ways of God. The scribes and Pharisees had corrupted the Law into a system of religion.
Men are so proud and so forceful of their own sinfulness, if God is going to help, He must make men realize their own hopelessness and helplessness.
All glory of man – the things that men are most delighted with is like the flower, which only looks good for a season. Man’s glory soon fades away! This is why we need the life of God and he that has the Son has life.
In the brazen basin was water and whenever the priest performed any kind of function before he went into the tabernacle he washed his hands and feet at the brazen laver.
This ritual belonged to the priesthood. Here is John taking the brazen laver to the people and teaching them true repentance.
John the Baptist baptized people at the same place Joshua did something with stones when the Jews crossed the Jordan on their way to the Promised Land.
While the water was parted Joshua had men pick up 12 rocks and take them out of the river bed and stack them as a monument.
Then he took 12 stones from the shore and put them in the water.
We were identified with Christ in His death and so Joshua put the 12 rocks into the stream. When the water went back it covered the stones; that represents death or retroactive positional truth.
The 12 rocks that were taken out of the water were put on the shore in Gilgal, the place of life; that meant current positional truth.
The baptism of John was simply saying down with human good and up with divine good.
“As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”
This delegation has to go back with an answer and they admit it in their second interrogation.
When a person is successful in the framework of the grace of God he is successful because of who and what God is, not because of who and what he is.
Not self-denial, not eating locust and honey, not asceticism, or false humility, but he knows he is great for one reason, he is a man sent from God!
If you have complete confidence in our eternal security, why don’t you have complete confidence in what God is doing with you right now?
Mayest Thou increase my greatness,
And turn to comfort me.