When We Do It On Our Own

“But after Uzziah became powerful, his pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the Lord his God, and entered the Temple of the Lord to burn incense on the Altar of Incense.”  –  2 Chronicles 26:16

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What a joy Uzziah’s life must have been in those early years. He was the king at 16 years of age. He was personally instructed in the fear of the Lord by Zechariah. His military successes were unmatched and his fame spread everywhere. He was a rock star…so to speak!

He was greatly helped…until he became powerful (vs. 13). Many times, with greater power comes greater pride. God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6, Prov. 3:34). Uzziah’s attitude ruined him long before his actions. We would all do well to heed this warning.

Uzziah’s pride lead to his unfaithfulness as he entered the house of the Lord. Unfaithfulness is linked to attendance when we do things our own way (vs. 16)! This unfaithfulness had its consequences.

Leprosy is not just a skin disease, it is way more than that. Leprosy manifests its symptoms outwardly on the skin, but the real damage is what is done inwardly to the nerve endings. Leprosy numbs the nerves. In other words, the individual loses all sensitivity and feeling. Pride is the leprosy of the Christian. It defiles and desensitizes. It destroys fellowship with others and one’s testimony in the world.

Doing things our own way has both short-term and long-term consequences. I think about Abraham and his first child. God had promised Abraham that He wouldmake him a great people. After some time, Abraham was persuaded to help God out by having relations with Hagar. In the short term it created a family division. Multiplied over thousands of years, it created the long-term world conflict that we experience today in the Middle East.

It is our choice: do things our way and face the consequences or do things God’s way and fulfill His purposes. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him and he will make your paths straight.’

 

 

 

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TruthCasting – Player

This is a message I preached at the first of this year entitled, “How to Live a Life Worth Living.”

Tony Dye's Point of View

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Source: TruthCasting – Player

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TruthCasting – Player

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Source: TruthCasting – Player

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When the wicked quote Scripture

strong>“but God says to the wicked: ‘what right do you have to recite my statutes and take my covenant on your lips? You hate instruction and turn your back on My words. When you see a thief you make friends with him, and you associate with adulterers. You unleash your mouth for evil and harness your tongue for deceit. You sit, maligning your brother, slandering your mother son. You have done these things, and I kept silent; you thought I was just like you. But I will rebuke you and lay out the case before you. Understand this, you who forget God, or I will tear you apart, and there will be no one to rescue you.” (Psalms 50:16-22)

Much is being said this morning about our presidents use of scripture to justify his actions of amnesty toward illegal aliens. Many have used, or should I say have abused Scriptures through the years to justify their actions. What I think really doesn’t matter, but what God thinks is of tantamount importance.

God, in speaking through the psalmist, castigated the wicked for reciting the words of His covenant (verse 16). God hates hypocrisy! To quote one part and ignore the rest is not only hypocrisy but lunacy.

After blasting the wicked, God verbalizes six indictments of the wicked that will be evident from their hypocrisy:

Verse 17 says they will hate God’s instruction and turn their back on his word.

Verse 18 says they would become friends with thieves.

Verse 19 says their mouths would be full of evil and their tongue would be full of deceit.

Verse 20 says they would even criticize their brother and slander would be in their mouth.

Verse 21 says when the wicked quote Scripture, they would be guilty of all of these things.

The last part of verse 21 is the greatest outrage: The wicked will think that God is just like them.

The president’s practice of injustice
and deceit and his support of late term abortion and the murder of unborn babies reveals his character. Verse 22 records the impending justice of God on those who practice such things and who quote the Scripture.

Our president, and all who would follow in his footsteps, must repent and turn back to the living God.

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Lighted Lamps and Leaping Legs

Lighted Lamps and Leaping Legs

 

“Lord, you light my lamp; my God illuminates my darkness. With You I can attack a barrier, and with my God I can leap over a wall.”  – Psalms 18:28-29

God is the source of my sight, my strength and my success. To me, nothing seems as precious as the ability to see. Many days, I have had eyes, but not seen. Because the Father is the illuminator, He is also the Liberator. There is freedom for me in sight. Seeing Him and what He is doing frees me from my own way and my own plan. To be without vision is a terrible thing. To flounder and wander aimlessly is torture for the soul who is intent on pleasing God. Vision gives direction. It builds purpose and meaning. Vision validates existence. It shouts, “You are important to me!” Vision is life-giving. It calls me from beds of ease and bids me to risk and live. Vision is stability. I walk surely, securely and with determination when I see what I am facing, where I am going and how far I have been. The Father is personal in this (He is my lamp), and He is powerful in this (He illuminates my darkness).

God is my strength. I am not taken out of the warfare of life, but am joined in it. He comes along side of me. With Him: what a glorious prospect, partner and provision! What I could never do alone, I can do with the Almighty! With Him my strategy is clear…attack! My life has been full of barriers…many of which I have created myself. There are none which cannot be overcome through Him. My lot is to live on the offensive. Away my soul with passive pretending! God has commissioned me to attack…to occupy till He comes! The sword and shield are fitted to my hand; I can do nothing else…but stand in Him and do battle. My success is prescribed…”with Him.” I am nothing without Him. I am nothing but successful with Him! The efficiency and efficacy of the Holy Spirit enables me to leap over the walls of barrier to God’s purposes. With Him, jousting becomes jumping; laboring becomes leaping. I remember the words of Daniel, “but the people who know their God will be strong and take action. (Daniel 11:32)

We are challenged to cast down everything to gaze steadfastly into His face. He is our sight, our strength, and our only hope of success. He would own us by His mercy and use us by His might.

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February 10, 2014 · 6:31 pm

Moving Towards Mighty

Moving towards Mighty

 

“So Jotham became mighty because he ordered his ways before the Lord his God.” – 2 Chronicles 27:6

The fear of God is a rare thing in our day and time. The anemic state of the Church can be attributed to the lack of fear on our part. We have become brazen, yet barren; prosperous, yet powerless; and prideful yet pitiful.

Jotham feared God because he saw in his father, Uzziah, the consequence of not fearing. Uzziah, in his pride, acted foolishly in the House of God. He was presumptuous. Jotham wouldn’t even darken the door of God’s House because of this.

Uzziah’s undisciplined life caused Jotham to discipline himself. He ordered his life out of a healthy respect for the holiness of God.

Discipline — the catalyst that moved Jotham toward mightiness is the challenge that must move us in these presumptuous days. After almost 41 years as a Christian, this simple message is still profound in my heart. This morning God is again calling me, calling us, to discipline.

Jotham did not live long (41 years), but he did live strong! It is not necessarily the length of your life, but the strength of your life that makes the biggest impact. God’s design is that we move toward mighty. His design must become our desire. Only in ordering our lives before Him can this become a reality.

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Perilous Prayer

Perilous Prayer

 

“If only my request would be granted and God would provide what I hope for: that He would decide to crush me, to unleash His power and cut me off! It would still bring me comfort, and I would leap for joy in unrelenting pain that I have not denied the words of the Holy One.” – Job 6:8-10

It is amazing to me how adventurous and dangerous we become when trials rear their ugly head. Desperation drives us and defines us in the realm of prayer.

Job’s prayer came from the desperation of abandonment. Instead of comfort from a friend, Job received criticism. Nothing hurts like being alone. His cry to God reveals his heart in five requests that he made:

–  Consider me! (If only…)

–  Crush me! (vs. 9a)

–  Cut me! (vs. 9b)

–  Comfort me! (vs. 10a)

–  Conquer me! (vs. 10b)

In the storms Job faced he had a sure footing…a firm foundation. He had not denied the words of the Holy One. I can endure devastating events and desperate times  if I have a safe place to stand. David’s song has become my song, and hopefully your song as well: “I waited patiently for the Lord, and He turned to me and heard my cry for help. He brought me up from a desolate pit, out of the muddy clay, and set my feet on a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear and put their trust in the Lord.” (Psalms 40:1-3)

What a wonderful work of the Lord that brings us out! Perilous prayer opens the door to the grace of God in our lives and brings about a powerful deliverance! Trust Him today in your storm. Cry out to Him in surrender and brokenness. Wait…and watch Him work!

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