Shaky Ground or Strong Man Down

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Sunday March 22, 2020

10:45 Worship

Judges 13:1-5

I am aware that it would seem a good pastor would be right up there preaching up on current events that are affecting us. Namely this corona virus. Spiritually speaking I believe that is what I do every time I have the opportunity to speak God’s word. For there is nothing more current than your present standing with God.I would like to speak to you today on where we are as a Nation, a church, as individuals. I want to give you some sure footed advice to strengthen you through these upcoming days.Pastor O. S. Hawkins has been pastor at 1st Baptist Dallas for years and also president and CEO of the SBC Annuity Board. I’ve had the joy to hear him speak on many occasions. He also is an author of many books, most of which I have read and has been a great help to me in my spiritual walk. Over the next few weeks I intend to share some thoughts with y’all that I have desired to for some time, which has been generated from one of his books “Moral Earthquakes”. It is one of those things that God births in your heart years before you actually use it.Here in the great state of Florida we have not been associated much with earthquakes. Though there have been some recorded they are not as prominent here as they are other places. We deal enough with hurricanes, tornadoes, lightning, roundabouts and mosquitoes. Many of us can remember watching the horrible effects of the earthquake in China’s Tang-shan province in 1976. Mexico City in 85, and here in the God Blessed U.S.A. in California’s San Francisco area in 1989. There have been more since these but all have one thing in common, devastation and loss of many lives.When an earthquake strikes, no matter how much you have prepared, you are totally helpless. You are at the mercy of its gargantuan force of destruction. What moments before provided our greatest comfort and security is suddenly transformed into hurtling possessions and collapsing walls.Devastating as earthquakes are to this world in which we live, I believe moral earthquakes are even more shattering. It is evidenced in our society. Please understand, I am not referring to New York, England, the Islands, other faraway places, but right here in the great metropolis of Mayo.We like to pretend that everything here is fine, but in truth, all the things we have impacted our kids with and our own minds through the various media outlets have come back to haunt us. You cannot expect that when we subject our children and ourselves to shows on a regular basis where homosexuality is championed, cohabitation is the norm, sex is the chief objective to a relationship, alcohol, rebelling against authority, and children are smarter than adults and the like, that it is not going to have an effect. Add to this the humanistic teaching of our education system, the watered down, non-offending gospel that’s being preached and the “let the kid raise themselves” parenting program that’s so popular.It is affecting them and it has infected us.But there is hope! There is a solution!When the bible speaks to guide us and ground us, it hardly ever directs it to the weak but to the strong. Even those who simply perceive themselves as strong.That ought to have you take note. Awaken your spirit today. 1Co 10:12, “Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.” Samson was a man, though very blessed by God, traded it all in. He exchanged The Truth for The lie. We can learn some very important lessons from his life to help us succeed in ours. That’s the whole question in a nutshell. Is it important to you to live a life that’s successful in God’s eyes?

  • Samson’s beginning. Judges 13:1-5
  • Samson was a promise of God. He was raised in a good family and had the advantages of a solid good moral upbringing.
  • If we read on we find that in his life, he went from hero to zero.
  • What could cause such a loss?
  • We like to blame Delilah. It’s always the woman’s fault. But like in most cases, closer examination reveals another story.
  • Earthquakes don’t just happen.
  • They come from things well beyond our sight, well beneath the surface.
  • Shifting rock plates continually moving against each other sometimes get caught or stuck on each other till one breaks and then total chaos.
  • They call these areas of contact fault lines.
  • What we see as an all of a sudden event actually has been quietly occurring beneath the surface for years, decades, centuries.
  • Though we see Delilah as Samson’s greatest fault, truth is, the root of his downfall began some twenty something years earlier.
  • He had a special calling of God. He was a Nazarite.
  • If you will look when you get home in Numbers chp. 6 you will find the law of the Nazarite.
  • You will see that a Nazarite is not to drink wine or strong drink or even touch a grape in any stage of its life.
  • They are not to cut their hair.
  • They are not to touch a dead body.
  • These were all meant to be an external symbol of an internal reality.
  • Samson’s beginning of His end. Judges 14
  • 14:1, Hanging with those he was supposed to be delivering God’s people from.
  • Who you associate with is who you become.
  • 14:1-2, Dominated by his desires.
  • Pr 25:28, “He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls”
  • Samson abandoned his calling. He rejected his parents guidance and upbringing based entirely on his emotions, senses. His flesh.
  • His first lust/love story.
  • He never met her, talked to her, met her parents, and knew nothing about her except how she looked.
  • Now because he was following his heart we see one thing leads to another.
  • Jer 17:9, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”
  • Where are they? Vineyards.
  • What happens? Kills a lion.
  • V8, We see he comes back and inspects the dead lion. He not only touches it but eats from it!
  • What are two things a Nazarite is not supposed to do? Touch grapes or anything dead.
  • One sin leads to another.
  • One compromise leads to the next.
  • When we say no to God in one area of our lives the fault line begins to spread throughout the rest of our life.
  • Many of us are involved in things.
  • Sinful habits, moral compromise, spiritual laziness.
  • We rationalize them as petty, trivial, and unimportant. We see them as no big deal.
  • Later we discover, often when it’s too late living our lives on such fault lines has caused incomprehensible damage to ourselves and to others.
  • Samson was no different than many of us today.
  • We get caught up in the moment. Carried by passion, emotion, ruled by our heart.
  • We know the old saying. What flows from the bucket of the mouth comes from the well of the heart. The same is true of our emotions.
  • I’m asked often; why do I feel this way or why do I act that way.
  • Simply because that is what your heart is full of.
  • We ain’t got to be Samson.
  • We don’t have to wait to the end to hopefully get it right. Today ,those here, those watching, God is speaking to you.
  • The sad descent into addictive behaviors all begin small indiscretions.
  • But end in great devastation.
  • Today it is not too late.
  • IF,IF,IF, you really want to live a life that is successful in the eyes of God. Simply because He is worth it you can do something about it today.
  • 1Jo 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
  • You are here today because the God of creation wanted you to hear this and submit, agree to it .