To Those Who Are Searching
Posted on 07/10/2011 by Rev. Benjamin R. Faust D.D.
TRANSCRIPT: (does not contain everything found in the audio above)
*** listen to the audio for introduction and prayer ***
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WHAT A MIGHTY GOD
What a mighty God we serve
What a mighty God we serve
Angels bow before him
Heaven and earth adore him
What a mighty God we serve
HE IS THE KING
He is the King of Kings
He is the Lord of Lords
His name is
Oh, he is the King
His name is Jesus, Jesus
Sad hears we've no more
He can heal the broken hearted
Open wide the prison door
And he's able to deliver evermore
TAKE ME IN TO THE HOLY OF HOLIES
Take me into the Holy of Holies
take me in by the Blood of the Lamb
Take me into the Holy of Holies
take the coal, touch my lips, here I am
Take me past the outer courts
into the Holy Place
Past the brazen altar
Lord, I want to see your face
Pass me by the crowds of people
and the priests who sing your praise
I hunger and thirst for your righteousness
and it's only found one place
*** listen to the audio for the message introduction ***
For those who came in a little late and might be wondering if I'm an imposter standing up here, it's really me. We still haven't come up with the money to pay for my Second Life account, which is the one tied to the island. I created this alt because even though I can't get in using my main account, I wanted to be with you to share what I believe God has given me for us today. A special "Thank You" to those of you who gave above and beyond what you normally would. We're down to only $74 we need to come up with, and we have more than two weeks to come up with it. If you haven't had the opportunity to help with that yet, feel free to go to almcyberchurch.org and click the Offering plate on that website.
Now that you know I'm not someone just pretending to be me, let's turn our attention to the Holy Scriptures, and let's attune our ear to hear whatever the Holy Spirit wants to speak to us today through His word.
In Matthew chapter seven, verses seven and eight, Jesus says this:
Matthew 7:7-8 (KMV)
7 Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened unto you.
8 For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.
In the Greek, "ask," "seek," and "knock" are in a continual, ongoing tense. So we could read verse seven like this: "Ask and keep on asking, and it will be given you; seek and keep on seeking, and you will find; knock, and keep on knocking, and it will be opened unto you."
I've talked with people who say they asked God to show them He's real or to help them with a desperate situation, but God let them down. In other words, God did not answer in the way and time they wanted Him to, so they quit asking, they quit seeking, and they quit knocking. But this verse isn't talking about something you do for a little while before giving up.
The word traslated "ask" means "to beg, to call for, to crave, to desire, to require." It's not like asking for a third serving of something for dinner; it's more like asking for food for you and your starving family. There is a burning desire, as well as an unquenchable persistence.
In Jeremiah 29:13 God says this: "And you will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart."
Have you set your face like flint toward seeking after God? If you have, you will find Him. If not, you will very likely just find religion.
Something I'd like to point out here about what Jesus said in Matthew seven: Jesus doesn't say you will find only if you seek for the truth. He simply says to keep seeking, and you will find.
Many people aren't seeking for the truth. Instead, they're seeking to find a version of the truth, a half-truth, or even a lie, that agrees with what they want to believe.
Let's consider the scientific community. Are you aware that science actually does not support evolution or the myth that the universe is billions of years old? Experiments that have been run over the last hundred years in an attempt to prove evolution, consistently do just the opposite. So why is evolution still presented as a fact? Why do skeptics claim that science and religion are opposed, and that anyone who is honest and informed will believe in evolution? Just maybe it's because they aren't really seeking for the truth, but instead are seeking to prove there is no God. And if you seek and keep on seeking, you will find. Even if what you are seeking is a lie.
To strengthen this point, considering the mass mis-information by which most of us have been surrounded our whole lives, here's a quote from an article published by Creation.com: (quote)
In 1984, scientists measured the amount of salt accumulated in Australia's largest salt lake -- Lake Eyre in South Australia. They found that it would have taken about 73,000 years to accumulate, assuming a flood occurred every 50 years.
However, the South Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service in 1991 stated that 'almost all its area is covered on average once in 8 years.' This reduces the time period for accumulation to only 12,000 years. This has to be a maximum time because the fossil evidence suggests that inland Australia was much wetter in the past, being covered in rainforest during the Tertiary Period when the lake was supposedly formed. With flooding every year, as could have occurred in the past, the minimum time for accumulation would be 1,500 years.
Evolutionists date the Tertiary between two and 65 million years ago. Even if Lake Eyre formed two million years ago, and we assume floods every eight years, 99.4 percent of the expected salt is missing. If we assume it is older, and take into account the wetter climate of the past, the problem becomes even greater, with up to 99.99 per cent of the expected salt missing.
The scientists who did the work were puzzled by this discrepancy and could find no explanation for where the salt could have gone.
However, if only several thousand years have elapsed since the Flood of Noah's time, as the Bible implies, then maybe all the salt is still there.
As the scientific community continues to explore the creation, they continue to uncover more and more evidence that is in stark contrast with the idea that there is no God, an idea which requires some form of evolution, which requires billions of years of history. Although, quite honestly, tests such as the ones conducted on fruit flies for almost 100 years have shown time and time again that mutations do not create new species, and DNA seems to have some sort of "reset" mechanism to keep them from doing so. In fact, the tests they've performed on the fruit fly should equal millions of years of natural evolution of humans. And yet they have produced no lasting change. No matter how hard they try to produce lasting genetic mutations, their fruit flies remain the same way God created them.
Here's the conclusion of an article published on Creationrevolution.com:
It has long been taught in classrooms across the world that the constancy of radioactive decay rates is a core assumption upon which old-Earth conclusions are based. Yet this assumption has been proven false, based on the fact that decay rates have been shown to vary. This information, according to scientists from Purdue and Stanford, goes against what has been "taught in classrooms" and against "what we're all brought up to believe." Does our society never tire of discovering that the "evidence" for old-Earth assumptions continues to disintegrate as more data is assessed? How long will it be, and how many more core evolutionary assumptions must be debunked, before those who insist on an Earth measured in billions of years acquiesce to the truth of a young Earth measured in thousands of years? Once again we see accurate scientific evidence in complete agreement with a straightforward reading of biblical history.
Of course these are only parts of only two of the thousands of peer-reviewed articles published by scientists which show the obsurdity of evolution, and I encourage you to visit the sites listed in today's notecard; subscribe to their email newsletters, and educate yourself with the truth. But I wanted to give you a very small example, just to help make the point that we find that for which we keep seeking. If we are searching to prove that there is no God, we will find evidence, even if that evidence has to rely upon unproven and sometimes disproven assumptions. Even then, there are scientists who once were devout evolution-believing atheists, who, because they could not dismiss the overwealming evidence, are now born-again, Bible-believing Christians. But I wonder... Just maybe they WERE searching for the truth, and were simply deceived for a time, but they KEPT ON SEARCHING, they continued to seek; and, true to what the word of God says, they found that truth.
From time to time, we've talked about sadly controversial issues here. I say "sadly" controversial, because the Bible is clear about them, but the Church still disagrees.
Take, for example, the issue of a homosexual lifestyle. The Bible clearly says such a lifestyle separates us from God and will lead those who practice it to an eternity in hell. And yet, most of the few times we've discussed this issue, people have left here offended, never to return. Some have said, either in IM or in public chat, that I am hateful and wicked. Why? Because I believe what the Bible says -- even when it says things I wish it wouldn't, and even when it condemns popular and politically-correct sins.
Then there are those outside of the Church (well, MOST of them are outside) who believe it is close-minded and even evil to say there is only one road to God. Even people who believe Jesus spoke the truth often cling to the idea that all roads lead to God, despite what Jesus said in John 14:6, "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father except through Me." It's both amazing and sad to hear all of the mental loops through which they jump to make Jesus' words, both there and in many other places, mean something else. And yet, Jesus wasn't talking only to those with great intelligence or with mystical, cryptic knowledge who could decode His messages; instead, He said time and time again, "Let him who has an ear hear." In other words, Jesus was speaking to those who keep on seeking for the truth and whose ears are not stopped up with what they want to believe. And they don't have to be a mystic or a genius; they need only be hungry, and keep on seeking.
It can be hard to let those who are searching for darkness continue on the path they have chosen. And we should tell them the truth when the opportunity arises. But until they start seeking for the truth no matter what it costs them, they won't hear it. They won't accept it. And they are likely to hate you for believing it.
Jesus said that it is the sick who need a doctor. And it goes to reason that if someone is sick but insists they are well, a doctor can't help them. And if someone knows they're sick but they don't want to get well, no one can help them. As much as we want to help those who refuse to acknowledge their spiritual condition or who want to stay the way they are, the best thing we can do is to pray for them, and then to move on to those who are hungry for the truth and who are seeking it with all their heart.
In Jesus' parable of the Great Supper, the lord invited people to his wedding feast, but they all had other things to do. So instead, he invited the poor, the lame, and the blind, as well as "whosoever will." And his house was filled.
He didn't tell his servants to keep on insisting that the ones come who didn't want to come. Instead, his invitation was sent to those who were in need and who recognized their need; to those who were hungry and who wanted to feast; to those who were blind and who wanted to see; to those who were ready and willing to follow the road to the marriage feast, no matter what obsticals might stand in their way.
Are you hungry today? Are you seeking after God? Are you seeking after Him with your whole heart?
If so, then the invitation is to YOU. If not, then the invitation is still to you -- the invitation to start asking Him to increase your desire for Him and for the truth; to ask and keep on asking that your desires for other things would pail in comparison to your all-consuming desire to follow after God and to have unbroken and unhindered fellowship with Him.
And to all of us I say, don't throw your pearls before swine. Tell the truth in love to everyone, but when people reject the truth, move on. There are people out there who are desperate for an answer, and who are willing to give up their own agendas and their own sacred cows in order to find the truth.
Maybe you're one of those people. Maybe you have not given your life to Jesus, but you are hungry for the truth. As Psalm 34:8 says, "Taste and see that the Lord is good." Run to the foot of the cross on which Jesus died to pay the penalty for your sins. And you will find that for which you are looking, and you will never be the same.
Let's close today's service with a time of prayer and ministry. This altar is open, and if God is speaking to you today, or if you just want to spend some time seeking Him, then you're all invited to get out of your seat right now and make your way to the front.
If you're looking for truth, if you're hungry for something that nothing you've tried has been able to fill, then I ask you to also come to the front, and surrender your life to Jesus. He is the truth for which you're looking.
If you'd like someone to talk or pray with you, you can instant message me, Mariposa, or anyone else on the staff or ministry team. After this time at the altar, you're invited to join us in the Fellowship Room to your left for a time of fellowship.
Take the step of searching -- searching for truth, searching for life, searching for a closer walk with God -- and come to this altar; for God will reveal Himself and His will to Those Who Are Searching.