Date: 1 September, 2021
Text: 2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1
Title: Biblical Separation
ill. We enjoyed doing HBC with the children. It was good to have the Loxleys helping with that. Stacey did a couple object lesson for the kids.
- Fun for the kids and adults to watch science teach a Bible lesson.
exp. Imagine - object lesson - oil and water - shake it up - the oil always separates from the water.
Why? Oil and water have different properties that make them separate one from the other.
Tonight, I want to preach on Biblical separation.
BELIEVERS OUGHT TO BE SEPARATE FROM THE WORLD.
exp. Our world has properties that are completely contrary to Christ.
2 Timothy 3:1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
exp. In contrast God begins immediate changes separating the life of a believer from wickedness.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
ill. Jesus identified this separation in his High Priestly prayer
- John 17:13 And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.
16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
saying from this text - A believer out to be "IN THE WORLD.... BUT NOT OF THE WORLD."
note: Sadly - there are "churches" in name only - who act as if someone can be a believer and continue in a life of sin.
SOME BELIEVERS have picked this idea up and think that they can blend Christianity and the world.
IT IS AS IMPOSSIBLE AS BLENDING OIL AND WATER (unless the elements are the same.)
note: (reverse application of 2 Cor. 5:17) If any man be not in Christ - He is not a new creature - old things are not passed away; behold nothing is become new.
our text: 2 Corinthians 6:15-7:1
The doctrine of separation commands that we (believers) separate ourselves from the world.
Are you separated from the world? From sin? Are you distinctly different from the ungodly?
I. The problem of not separating from the world.
ill. People often say - the preaching/ teaching is good, but the practice is bad.
note: God's Word proclaims that GOOD teaching/preaching and GOOD PRACTICE go together.
1 Timothy 6:3 ....the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
1 Timothy 4:16 Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.
exp. Satan doesn't want a GODLY church and so he is seeking to change - doctrine and practice.
ill. He'll suggest things like....
1) - DON'T SEPARATE - you have to give them what they want or they won't come to church.
2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
exp. Don't preach a message that demands separation from wickedness and separation unto God.
ill. Don't be like Jesus -
Joh 7:7 The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil.
2) - DON'T SEPARATE - you need to trick them into hearing God's Word by being like them.
2 Cor 4:2 But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.
3) - DON'T SEPARATE - You have to reach them with their music, environment, drinks....
1Cor 1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
ill. Satan is working overtime to try to get churches to unite with the world. (He is succeeding.)
- Worldly music, dress, entertainment, events, locations, drinks, environment etc.
- Worldly doctrines of the world replacing the doctrine of God's Word.
- Worldly public opinion and political correctness, instead of Godly practice.
app. It's the old - "If you can't beat them, join them" argument. However, the arguments of Satan ignores OBVIOUS PROBLEMS.
A. The problem of an unequal yoke.
14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers:
exp. Believers and unbelievers CAN NOT be in an equal yoke. Impossible....
def. yoke: the wood harness that connected two animals so that they could pull the plow together.
ill. I enjoy seeing farm animals - Highland Show 2 years ago.... seeing the horses....
- Clydesdales - had yokes for pulling - 2,000 pounds horses - 5-6 feet - at the shoulders
- Shetland ponies in contrast are 3 foot, 4 inches tall - and weigh around 400 pounds.
exp. An unequal yoke is plowing your field with a Clydesdale and a Shetland. If you are a farmer and you want to plow your field - that is a really bad idea.
note: They idea that a believer should yoke up with an unbeliever - is a really bad idea - whatever you hope to do as a believer is not going to go well if harnessed with an unbeliever.
app. God commands separation because of the difficulty of an unequal yoke. * God allows for marriages where 1 spouse get's saved and the other does not - better if they get saved.
B. The problem of bad fellowship.
14 ...for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness?
exp. This is a question: Can Truth and wrong fellowship with one another?
note: Fellowship - assumes that you come to an agreement.
Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?
ill. Collaboration: Is big in the business world. (working with someone to produce something.)
Imagine in your business, you have one person that does everything right. Another person does everything wrong. You bring them together and say - agree on this project. If they both accept some of the other person's ideas - WHAT DO YOU HAVE? (A problem....)
note: Truth mixed with wrong is wrong and wrong mixed with truth is wrong.
(THEY CAN'T AGREE - IF THEY DO - THEIR AGREEMENT IS WRONG.)
1 Corinthians 15:33 Be not deceived: evil communications (companionship) corrupt good manners.
app. The problem of bad fellowship is that to fellowship with the unrighteous, you will not be righteous. (Righteousness DOES NOT agree with unrighteousness.)
C. The problem of impossible unity.
14 ...and what communion hath light with darkness?
exp. You CAN NOT unite light and darkness.
ill. Tonight when you get home from church you can try this - try to keep the dark in the room when you turn on the lights. Or try to keep the light in the room when you turn on the dark.
LIGHT AND DARKNESS ARE OPPOSITES
exp. The only way light can stay around darkness is BY PUTTING OUT THE LIGHT.
App. Don't confront sin. Don't promote the Gospel. Don't speak about Jesus.
Mat 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. (IF YOUR LIGHT CAN BE AROUND DARKNESS, YOU ARE DARKNESS.)
D. The problem of trying to put Jesus with the Devil.
15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial?
def. sumphonesis - agreement.
note: another Greek word is "symphonia" - agreement or concord of sound.
exp."symphony" come from "symphonia" - instruments blended in wonderful harmony.
ill. I've heard a symphony - beautiful, orchestral, classical music.
ill. I also lived in California - back in the days when people bought bigger cars to put in bigger sounds systems. The sound systems in those cars were not developed for symphonic music.
exp. You can't have a symphony with an orchestra on one side and the car and speakers on the other.
THEY DONT GO TOGETHER AND IT'S PERVERSE TO ATTEMPT TO HARMONIZE THEM.
exp. Jesus does not agree with Satan - Satan does not agree with Jesus - BUT HE WANTS PERVERSE MANKIND TO THINK HE DOES.
E. The problem of participating with unbelievers.
15 ...or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
exp. part - has the idea of participation. Working together for the "same" cause.
def. infidel: disbelieving, without Christian faith
ill. House of One - in Berlin - "Muslims, Jews and Christians are to be united for worship under one room in Berlin in a groundbreaking project." It is to be a church, a mosque and a synagogue.
exp. No believer has to wonder if they should participate in ecumenical confusion like that.
The question is rhetorical because it should be obvious that....
BELIEVERS AND UNBELIEVERS CAN NOT COOPERATE IN WORSHIPPING GOD.
app. Don't swallow the desire of this world to promote "tolerance" for other faiths. The desire of the devil is not to unite the world - IT IS TO EXTINGUISH THE LIGHT OF CHRIST.
F. The problem of idolatry in God's temple.
16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols?
exp. Of all place - the temple was to be a place of purity and holiness unto the Lord.
note: Paul asks can you put idolatry into God's temply agreeably? (Does God agree with that?)
Isaiah 42:8 I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.
ill. Ark of the Covenant - from the Holy of Holies in the Tabernacle - not allowed to be touched by men. God's glory would be seen over the mercy seat on the Ark of the Covenant.
THE PHILISTINES CAPTURED THE ARK BECAUSE OF GOD'S JUDGMENT.
1 Samuel 5:1 And the Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it from Ebenezer unto Ashdod.
2 When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon.
3 And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again.
4 And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the LORD; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him.
app. Be careful - if you want to put in an idol in God's temple - be ready for just the stump to be left. 1 Corinthians 3:17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy;
II. The promises about separating from the world.
note: Repentance has always been involved in conversion. A change of mind and action.
exp. Saving faith - separates man from what he was to what God wants him to be.
ill. A born again thief - Eph 4: 28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.
1 Corinthians 6:9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
exp. When someone gets saved - THEY ARE SEPARATED FROM THEIR OLD LIFE.
Romans 6:3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
GOD HAS PROMISES FOR THOSE WHO WILL REPENT AND TURN TO CHRIST. (SEPARATE YOURSELF FROM THE WORLD AND....)
A. The living God will dwell in you.
16 ...for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them;
exp. I don't know about you - but if Jesus said - I want to live in your house - I'd say, "come in."
Rev 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
note: When Jesus comes in - he takes OWNERSHIP. The Temple is the house of God.
1 Cor. 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
exp. God will not allow Himself to be tabernacled with ungodliness.
1 Co 3:17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
app. The promise is glorious - GOD WANTS TO LIVE IN YOUR HEART. But, if Jesus is in your heart - he's not there as a guest - HE'S THERE AS THE OWNER. IT IS HIS HOUSE AND HE EXPECTS IT TO BE CLEAN.
B. The living God will make you His people.
16 ...and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
exp. The living God is the one who....
- PROVIDES, GUIDES, PROTECTS, CARES, PROSPERS, AND LOVES YOU.
Joh 10:11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
ill. And idol is nothing - wood, stone, metal - an idol is a make believe God.
exp. Many people have false gods - religion, alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, sensuality, - they don't give life - they give death.
Joh 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
app. The abundant life is found by those who have GOD AS THEIR GOD. (Separate to Him.)
C. The living God will accept you.
17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
exp. If you want God - it is your choice. He will accept you IF you are willing to leave the world.
ill. John the Baptist - preaching repentance....
Matthew 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
exp. "Easy believism" - just pray this prayer and you will be saved
- no remorse for sin
- no hatred for that which has defiled your life
- no fear that you stand in jeapardy of hell fire.
- no sense of unworthiness to have the blood of Christ applied.
app. God's salvation is a free gift - it is received by faith - BUT KNOW THIS - THE FAITH THAT IS SAVING FAITH AGREES WITH GOD ABOUT SIN.
Isa 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.
JESUS ACCEPTS THE SINNERS AND CHANGES HIM INTO A SAINT.
D. The Lord Almighty will adopt you.
18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
ill. I love my dad. God has given me a good father. I called my dad this week just because I felt like I needed to talk with him. It's wonderful to have a loving father.\
hymn: Sinners Jesus Will Receive - Erdmann Neumeister (1718)
1 Sinners Jesus will receive:
Sound this word of grace to all
Who the heav'nly pathway leave,
All who linger, all who fall.
2 Come, and He will give you rest;
Trust Him, for His word is plain;
He will take the sinfulest;
Christ receiveth sinful men.
exp. God will be your Father and you will be His sons - THIS IS A DECLARATION OF ALMIGHTY GOD - GOD CAN'T LIE - BUT MAN MUST LEAVE THEIR SIN.
app. If you aren't separated from your sin, you are despising the goodness of God....
- If God lives in you (with your sin) - God is grieved.
- If God has taken you as His people (you are serving the enemy if you are in sin.)
- If God graciously received you (how can you return to what he saved you from?)
- If God is your Father (how can you continue in what killed his first born son?)
THE FULL BLESSING OF THESE PROMISES IS REALIZED THROUGH SEPARATION.
III. The proposition commanding separation from the world.
7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us...
exp. Because God has given us such wonderful promises, separation is the right course of action.
A. The command is outward AND inward separation.
1...let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit.
exp. If you are truly God's child, cleansing should take place outside (flesh) and inside (spirit)
ill. Connie Lyndsey - (Her and her husband - Pastor Dan - missionaries in Liberia.)
The darkness of sin had engulfed my mind. I had sinful friends. I sang sinful songs. I memorized sinful music.
I went sinful places. Public school friends made things worse. They encouraged me in my sin. They taught me more sin. I had no interest in being any different. I was living a selfish life.
Then...when I was almost twelve, a friend started telling me about Jesus. I tried to get away from her. I did not want to change. I even lied to her, and said I was already saved, but she did not believe it.
She loved me enough to care for me, and help me to Christ. (Cathy Glosser Wieneke). She encouraged me.
One day I actually listened to her Baptist preacher at Church. I was deeply convicted of my sin. (His name is A.D. Pringle. The Church: Ottumwa Baptist Temple, Ottumwa, Iowa) That day in April, so long ago (1972) I received Jesus Christ as my personal Savior....and the old Connie died. Yes, I died. Dead and gone.
To my amazement, I was resurrected by Jesus Christ into new life. Old things had passed away, and all things were becoming new!! (II Corinthians 5:17) And like the Bible says, I no longer wanted to live for myself, but unto Him that died for me, and rose again. (II Corinthians 5:15) The resurrection and transformation began!
app. Has your life gone through outward and inward separation since you got saved?
(WE ARE TO CLEANSE OURSELVES.... OUTWARDLY AND INWARDLY.)
B. The command is diligent separation.
1 ...perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
ill. Benson and Kay Lee enjoyed their time at the Bill Rice Ranch - watching from here - it went incredibly fast. It seems like just yesterday we were hearing about their cleaning the camp.....
The Camp Director - is Matt Downs - I am told that he is very fun - but you don't want to upset him. (I thought - he can put the fear of God - in the camp staff - that is good - camp will be clean.)
THEY WERE PERFECTING CAMP CLEANLINESS IN THE FEAR OF MATT DOWNS.
App. You aren't the holiness inspector of your life - GOD IS. Do you fear what He will think if you don't obey and clean your life - INSIDE AND OUT. How diligent should you be? Don't upset Him.
Oil and water - repulse each other - you can't mix them together. It's not possible - they separate.
It's the same with TRUE BELIEVERS - and this world - you can't mix them - it's not possible.
There is inherrant problems in trying to mix them....
can you unite Jesus and Satan?
can believers participate with unbelievers?
should you put idols in God's temple?
The promises regarding separation are wonderful.
God will dwell in you.
God will make you His people.
God will accept you.
God will adopt you.
SEPARATE INSIDE AND OUT.
SEPARATE DILIGENTLY IN THE FEAR OF GOD.