Stand Fast

01/09/2019 13:28

If you would like to listen to this message, please click on the following link.

Date: 30 August, 2019
Text: 2 Thes. 2:10-17
Title: Stand Fast
 
Introduction:
 
Alec used to teach our kids art. We could furnish an art gallery with paintings that are up in our loft. He also taught the boys a little bit about building wood. One thing we found out is that Alec likes wood glue. Screws are good but wood glue makes it immovable.
 
We put his training to practice last week as we made three planters for along our drive. They are 25 pieces of wood each. There are five layers of lumber going up each side. Between each layer we put a layer of wood glue. I was suprised as Benson and I worked together in the assembly on how fast the glue would make the boards "stand fast" together.
 
That terminology of "standing fast" is in our text today as Paul writes to the church inThesolonica.
 
THE THESALLONIANS NEEDED ENCOURAGEMENT TO STAND IN A DIFFICULT DAY.
The Thesallonians had received Paul's first epistle which spoke of the imminent return of Jesus and the persecution that would follow. 
- They began to think in their persecution that Jesus had come already and they had missed the rapture.
- Paul told them that although there was already deception and persecution, the day of the Lord was still future.
- Although many would be deceived by the false teaching, Paul rejoiced that God had done a great work in these believers hearts and admonished them to STAND FAST.
"15  Therefore, brethren, stand fast,...
 
Other churches in that day, needed God's general the apostle Paul, to encourage them to stand fast.
ill. The church at Ephesus
Eph 6:14  Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
Eph 6:13  Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
 
IF THE BELIEVERS 2,000 YEARS AGO FELT LIKE THEY WERE LIVING IN THE LAST DAYS (OF PERSECUTION AND DECEIT) how much more do we?
 
We to need Paul's encouragement to stand fast! Are you standing fast? 
 
 
 
I. Stand fast, because God took you to Himself.
13  But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
def. chosen "To take to oneself."
 ill. We've bred Duchess and hope that she is pregnant. Dog's aren't as good at "showing" they are pregnant as humans and so, we wait and hope. If she has puppies, it will be interesting to see buyers chose what puppy they will take to themselves. There were only two when we chose our puppy and our choice was because we wanted a female. Thankfully we didn't have many to chose from because it would be difficult to decide WHICH TO TAKE TO OURSELVES.
exp. But, what a wonderful day for Duchess when she became a part of the Shore family. She has a home, security, food..... Why? Because she is our's.
 note: Stand fast Christian! God took you to Himself. You are a part of his family. You have a home, security, provision.... Why? Because God chose you and took you to himself.
hymn: Will Your Anchor Hold in the Storms of Life - Priscilla Jane Owens
1 Will your anchor hold in the storms of life,
when the clouds unfold their wings of strife?
When the strong tides lift, and the cables strain,
will your anchor drift, or firm remain?
[Refrain:]
We have an anchor that keeps the soul
steadfast and sure while the billows roll;
fastened to the Rock which cannot move,
grounded firm and deep in the Saviour’s love!
2 It is safely moored, 'twill the storm withstand,
For 'tis well secured by the Saviour's hand;
And the cables passed from His heart to mine,
Can defy the blast, through strength divine.
 note: Are you upset at God today because God didn't chose you? Is God as random as we are in chosing a puppy that he's chosen some to eternal life and some to damnation? Why does God not chose some - BECAUSE THEY DO NOT CHOSE HIM.
Mat 23:37  O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
2Pe 3:9  The Lord ... is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (THEY REFUSE TO COME.)
note: Each point today we are going to consider the contrast in the life of the UNBELIEVER. They can't stand fast - because God did not take them to himself.
in contrast:
v.10. ...because they received not the love of the truth,
v.12 ...who believed not the truth.
ill. I was impacted by calvanism when candidating with a small group to help start a church. I walked away saying, "Lord what is it." At the hotel that night I read through Matthew and got to the story of the Rich Man and Lazarus. When the rich man pleaded for his brothers to get a witness from the dead (Lazarus) Abraham could have said - YOU ARE NOT ELECT AND NEITHER ARE THEY. Instead he says, "Luk 16:31  And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.
app. If you are not saved today, the problem is not God not chosing you. The problem is your unbelief in the TRUTH. You don't believe God! As Paul said to the Philippian jailer who cried out, "Sirs what must I do to be saved?" "BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AND THOU SHALT BE SAVED AND THY HOUSE."
 transition - Stand fast - GOD TOOK YOU TO HIMSELF.
 
II. Stand fast, because God purified you by faith.
13  But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
exp. Sanctification is holiness - it is being cleansed and set apart by God.
ill. Thursday night - Joseph - called to come to the king's court. 
Gen 41:14  Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they brought him hastily out of the dungeon: and he shaved himself, and changed his raiment, and came in unto Pharaoh.
 exp. He was liberated - cleansed, clothed and walking in the king's presence.
note: How does this happen in life....
1.) someone realizes they are in bondage spiritually
2.) they hear the king's call to come into his presence.
3.) They respond BY FAITH. "belief of the truth" (our text)
Rom 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
4.) The Holy Ghost cleanses them! "sanctification of the Spirit"
Rom 10:10  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness;
ill. After a list of horrible sin and sinners - Paul says in 1 Corinthians 6:11  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.
ill. There is something wonderful about cleansing - Growing up we had a dog, Buffy, every time Buffy, got a bath, she exited the bathroom at a full run and went tearing around the house. Why? Even an animal can appreciate being cleansed from filth.
note: If you have a pet, you know that you do your best once they are clean, to keep them clean - you enjoy their "fellowship" when they are clean.
 app. Do you remember your salvation? How wonderful it was to have God cleanse you from your sin by His Holy Spirit TO BRING YOU TO (relationship and) FELLOWSHIP WITH HIM. Stand fast - don't go back to the filth which defiled your life before Christ.
in contrast:
v.12 ...who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
exp. An UNBELIEVER can not stand fast in holiness because they have not been purified by God's Spirit. They enjoy their filth.
Joh 3:19  And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
20  For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
21  But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.
 app. Stand fast believer - you have been cleansed by God's Spirit through faith. Walk in the Spirit!
 
III. Stand fast, because God called you to partake of the glory of Jesus.
14  Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
ill. Have you ever been to a wonderful ceremony. Last year we enjoyed being at the wedding ceremony of Jaime and Rebekah Cooling - (Rebekahs due date is 11 September) 
- It is an honour to be present on an occasion like that.
- It is wonderful to know the couple and rejoice with them. 
question: Can you begin to imagin the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ which we obtained when God called us by His Gospel to Himself?
 hymn lyrics - Look Ye Saints - Thomas Kelly
1 Look, ye saints, the sight is glorious:
see the Man of Sorrows now;
from the fight returned victorious,
ev'ry knee to him shall bow.
Crown him! Crown him!
Crowns become the Victor's brow.
2 Crown the Savior, angels, crown him;
rich the trophies Jesus brings;
in the seat of pow'r enthrone him,
while the vault of heaven rings.
Crown him! Crown him!
Crown the Savior King of kings.
3 Sinners in derision crowned him,
mocking thus the Savior's claim;
saints and angels crowd around him,
own his title, praise his name.
Crown him! Crown him!
Spread abroad the Victor's fame!
4 Hark! those bursts of acclamation!
Hark! those loud triumphant chords!
Jesus takes the highest station;
O what joy the sight affords!
Crown him! Crown him!
King of kings and Lord of lords.
 question: Will you be there to honour the King of Kings and Lord of Lords who HAS BEEN GIVEN SUCH GLORY BY GOD THE FATHER.
Joh 17:5  And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
 ill. Have you ever been rightly proud? 
- Receiving an award - school, civic, 
- Proud of a family member - getting a degree, etc.
 question: Will that right kind of pride begin to compare with what we will feel in our heart when we see the glorified Lord Jesus Christ and partake of His glory as ONE OF THOSE REDEEMED BY HIS BLOOD SHED ON THE OLD RUGGED CROSS?
note: Incredible honour our's to be partakers of the glory of God.
in contrast:
12  That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
exp. This group ought to hang their heads in shame. THEY DESPISED THE OLD RUGGED CROSS AND THE KING OF GLORY WHO DIED BECAUSE OF THEIR SIN.
 app. Stand fast - God has called you to partake of the glory of Jesus!
 
IV. Stand fast, because God has instructed you.
15  Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.
note: Paul knew that the church at Thesalonica could stand because God had revealed His truth unto them. "Hold the traditions which ye have been taught...."
exp. The traditions is the body of truth given verbally by the apostles as well as by letters from the apostles. It is the apostles doctrine.
 note: Doctrine (truth upon which faith is based) is vital to standing fast. 
ill. When Paul told the church at Ephesus to stand, he emphasized doctrine.
Eph 6:14  Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth,
Eph 6:17  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
Eph 6:16  Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
 ill. Paul told his preacher boy, Timothy, CONTINUE IN THE DOCTRINE.
1Ti 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.
ill. in evangelism - I'll share the importance of doctrine with a building illustration - You don't build a house without a standard of measurement. (If you did it wouldn't stand.) But, when you use a proper standard it is built to stand.
 app. Your Christian life is only as strong as it's adherance to the standard.
Mat 7:24  Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
in contrast:
11  And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
 exp. Many people believe STRONGLY ....
evolution - in the beinning there was a big bang
atheism - there was nothing in the beginning
false religion - Jesus is not God, good people go to heaven....
BUT THEIR BELIEF IS BASED ON THEMSELVES, ON RELIGION, ON "SCIENCE"
NOTE: They reject sound doctrine.... and they can't stand.
2Ti 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;
app. If your faith is based upon God's word this morning, you have strong faith. Rom 10:17  So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. 
If you want God's instruction - GO TO GOD'S WORD AND STAND FAST!
 
V. Stand fast, God's grace to you is timeless - It is past, present and future.
16  Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace,
exp. The trinity is in our text this morning - we have The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit.
def. Grace - God's unmerited favour. God doing for us what we could not do for ourselves and which we did not deserve.
 note: I see three time periods of grace to believers given in this passage.
1.) Grace in the past - the cross "hath loved us"
Joh 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Rom 8:32  He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
 ill. Witnessing to Mohammed - up here for the Muslim ritual holy day Eid-al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice) where they focus on the story of Abraham offering Isaac. Mohammed said, "What struck me is the Son allowing the father to sacrifice him.
exp. I shared that this took place on Mt. Moriah - the same place where God the father sacrificed His Son - who allowed himself to be placed on the cross - for our sin. 
 app. God did something by grace for you on that day - "loved us."
2.) Grace in the present - "everlasting consolation"
def. Consolation is comfort. God has given us eternal comfort.
Joh 14:16  And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
Joh 14:26  But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
Joh 15:26  But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:
Joh 16:7  Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.
question: Do you know the solace of the One within you who is the Comforter sent by Jesus from the Father.? Have you tasted the fruit of the Spirit in your life?
Galatians 5:22  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23  Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
 app. What unmerited Favour that God put such a Comforter into our hearts.
3.) Grace in the future - "good hope through grace."
ill. Mum and Dad moving - the house they are purchasing is being fixed up by my mom's cousins family - sweet Christians. They are skilled builders - mum was worried about everything - but Aaron told them - this is a normal project for us - Aaron is looking forward to the big reveal.
 app.  God has a big reveal planned for us. That expectation is in the heart of every child of God. HEAVEN - THE PRESENCE OF GOD IN GLORY FOR ALL ETERNITY IS OUR EXPECTATION!
question: Are you experiencing God's past, present and future grace in your life? Stand Fast!
in contrast:
v.10 ...because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
note: Unbelievers don't have grace to partake of God's love, comfort or hope. 
 ill. 2 publicans - at Waverley - talking about smoking, wanting to quit, but needing it. We talked and they understood that much of mental health was just sin and no relationship with God.
app. If that is you this morning, you don't have to stay there. You can have God's grace - past, present and future. Believers - you've got it! stand fast!
 
VI. Stand fast, God will comfort your heart.
17  Comfort your hearts, 
exp. The Spirit of God has brought us into a very close relationship with God the Father.
Rom 8:15  For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
Gal 4:6  And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
 ill. There is something wonderful about a father's presence to take away fear. Becoming scared of Thunderstorms after a close lightening strike that I thought blinded me. For 6 months afterwards, I slept in my parents bedroom during storms. Why? Because if dad was there it was going to be all right.
app. Is life rough? Have you run to your Father for his comfort?
Matthew 6:6  But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
7  But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
8  Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.
9  After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven,
ill. Jesus would run to his father, "(At Lazarus grave) Father, I know thou hearest me always...." "(In the garden) Father.... if it be possible...." It was impossible that it should be otherwise - but the angel strengthened him and Jesus went to the cross by the grace of a loving Father.
in contrast:
10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish;
 ill. Study this past week revealed homosexuality is not genetic - this ought to shake the faith of those who say, "They were born that way." I hope the day is coming when evolution is proven untrue - Oh, how I love it when the world is shown THE SHAKY FOUNDATION OF THEIR FAITH. There is none to comfort them, but a drink, a smoke, a drug, a falsehood, a shaky government promise.
app. But, we have the Father to comfort our hearts. Stand fast believer, God will comfort your heart.
 
VII. Stand fast, God will establish you.
and stablish you in every good word and work.
ill. Roslin - homes are being built left and right. They aren't going together of themselves but the builders are putting them together. They are establishing the home.
Eph 2:20  20  And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;
21  In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:
22  In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.
Php 1:6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
exp. Don't fret believer. Obey God and do your part. But, know this - the work God is doing in your life is HIS WORK. 
 ill. Molding a Masterpiece - Ron Hamilton 
Master Potter, why do You labor all day,
Giving such effort to rough, worthless pieces of clay?
Why such feeling in Your hands? Why such care in every touch?
Why all the struggle? Your creation is nothing but dust.
I'm molding a masterpiece, a work of great beauty.
I'm molding a masterpiece; My labor's not done.
A trophy, a treasure or worth beyond measure
I'm molding a masterpiece, a masterpiece of love.
app. Be patient Christian - stand fast - God is at work. Let him establish your words and work for His glory.
in contrast:
10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
11  And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
12  That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
ill. Witnessing to a neighbor - come with me and see what alcohol has done to men's lives....
app. Unbelievers are not being built up, they are being torn down by sin and and will be damned not established by God.
 
conclusion: STAND FAST
 
1) God took you to Himself.
2) God purified you by faith.
3) God called you to partake of the glory of Jesus.
4) God instructed you.
5) God's grace is for you - past, present and future.
6) God's comforts your heart.
7) God is establishing you.
 

Date: 30 August, 2019

Text: 2 Thes. 2:10-17

Title: Stand Fast

 

Introduction:

Alec used to teach our kids art. We could furnish an art gallery with paintings that are up in our loft. He also taught the boys a little bit about building wood. One thing we found out is that Alec likes wood glue. Screws are good but wood glue makes it immovable.

 

We put his training to practice last week as we made three planters for along our drive. They are 25 pieces of wood each. There are five layers of lumber going up each side. Between each layer we put a layer of wood glue. I was suprised as Benson and I worked together in the assembly on how fast the glue would make the boards "stand fast" together.

 

That terminology of "standing fast" is in our text today as Paul writes to the church inThesolonica.

 

THE THESALLONIANS NEEDED ENCOURAGEMENT TO STAND IN A DIFFICULT DAY.

The Thesallonians had received Paul's first epistle which spoke of the imminent return of Jesus and the persecution that would follow. 

- They began to think in their persecution that Jesus had come already and they had missed the rapture.

- Paul told them that although there was already deception and persecution, the day of the Lord was still future.

- Although many would be deceived by the false teaching, Paul rejoiced that God had done a great work in these believers hearts and admonished them to STAND FAST.

"15  Therefore, brethren, stand fast,...

 

Other churches in that day, needed God's general the apostle Paul, to encourage them to stand fast.

ill. The church at Ephesus

Eph 6:14  Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

Eph 6:13  Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

 

IF THE BELIEVERS 2,000 YEARS AGO FELT LIKE THEY WERE LIVING IN THE LAST DAYS (OF PERSECUTION AND DECEIT) how much more do we?

 

We to need Paul's encouragement to stand fast! Are you standing fast? 

 

 

 

I. Stand fast, because God took you to Himself.

13  But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

def. chosen "To take to oneself."

 ill. We've bred Duchess and hope that she is pregnant. Dog's aren't as good at "showing" they are pregnant as humans and so, we wait and hope. If she has puppies, it will be interesting to see buyers chose what puppy they will take to themselves. There were only two when we chose our puppy and our choice was because we wanted a female. Thankfully we didn't have many to chose from because it would be difficult to decide WHICH TO TAKE TO OURSELVES.

exp. But, what a wonderful day for Duchess when she became a part of the Shore family. She has a home, security, food..... Why? Because she is our's.

 note: Stand fast Christian! God took you to Himself. You are a part of his family. You have a home, security, provision.... Why? Because God chose you and took you to himself.

hymn: Will Your Anchor Hold in the Storms of Life - Priscilla Jane Owens

1 Will your anchor hold in the storms of life,

when the clouds unfold their wings of strife?

When the strong tides lift, and the cables strain,

will your anchor drift, or firm remain?

[Refrain:]

We have an anchor that keeps the soul

steadfast and sure while the billows roll;

fastened to the Rock which cannot move,

grounded firm and deep in the Saviour’s love!

2 It is safely moored, 'twill the storm withstand,

For 'tis well secured by the Saviour's hand;

And the cables passed from His heart to mine,

Can defy the blast, through strength divine.

 note: Are you upset at God today because God didn't chose you? Is God as random as we are in chosing a puppy that he's chosen some to eternal life and some to damnation? Why does God not chose some - BECAUSE THEY DO NOT CHOSE HIM.

Mat 23:37  O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

2Pe 3:9  The Lord ... is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (THEY REFUSE TO COME.)

note: Each point today we are going to consider the contrast in the life of the UNBELIEVER. They can't stand fast - because God did not take them to himself.

in contrast:

v.10. ...because they received not the love of the truth,

v.12 ...who believed not the truth.

ill. I was impacted by calvanism when candidating with a small group to help start a church. I walked away saying, "Lord what is it." At the hotel that night I read through Matthew and got to the story of the Rich Man and Lazarus. When the rich man pleaded for his brothers to get a witness from the dead (Lazarus) Abraham could have said - YOU ARE NOT ELECT AND NEITHER ARE THEY. Instead he says, "Luk 16:31  And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

app. If you are not saved today, the problem is not God not chosing you. The problem is your unbelief in the TRUTH. You don't believe God! As Paul said to the Philippian jailer who cried out, "Sirs what must I do to be saved?" "BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AND THOU SHALT BE SAVED AND THY HOUSE."

 transition - Stand fast - GOD TOOK YOU TO HIMSELF.

 

II. Stand fast, because God purified you by faith.

13  But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

exp. Sanctification is holiness - it is being cleansed and set apart by God.

ill. Thursday night - Joseph - called to come to the king's court. 

Gen 41:14  Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they brought him hastily out of the dungeon: and he shaved himself, and changed his raiment, and came in unto Pharaoh.

 exp. He was liberated - cleansed, clothed and walking in the king's presence.

note: How does this happen in life....

1.) someone realizes they are in bondage spiritually

2.) they hear the king's call to come into his presence.

3.) They respond BY FAITH. "belief of the truth" (our text)

Rom 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

4.) The Holy Ghost cleanses them! "sanctification of the Spirit"

Rom 10:10  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness;

ill. After a list of horrible sin and sinners - Paul says in 1 Corinthians 6:11  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.

ill. There is something wonderful about cleansing - Growing up we had a dog, Buffy, every time Buffy, got a bath, she exited the bathroom at a full run and went tearing around the house. Why? Even an animal can appreciate being cleansed from filth.

note: If you have a pet, you know that you do your best once they are clean, to keep them clean - you enjoy their "fellowship" when they are clean.

 app. Do you remember your salvation? How wonderful it was to have God cleanse you from your sin by His Holy Spirit TO BRING YOU TO (relationship and) FELLOWSHIP WITH HIM. Stand fast - don't go back to the filth which defiled your life before Christ.

in contrast:

v.12 ...who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

exp. An UNBELIEVER can not stand fast in holiness because they have not been purified by God's Spirit. They enjoy their filth.

Joh 3:19  And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

20  For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.

21  But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

 app. Stand fast believer - you have been cleansed by God's Spirit through faith. Walk in the Spirit!

 

III. Stand fast, because God called you to partake of the glory of Jesus.

14  Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

ill. Have you ever been to a wonderful ceremony. Last year we enjoyed being at the wedding ceremony of Jaime and Rebekah Cooling - (Rebekahs due date is 11 September) 

- It is an honour to be present on an occasion like that.

- It is wonderful to know the couple and rejoice with them. 

question: Can you begin to imagin the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ which we obtained when God called us by His Gospel to Himself?

 hymn lyrics - Look Ye Saints - Thomas Kelly

1 Look, ye saints, the sight is glorious:

see the Man of Sorrows now;

from the fight returned victorious,

ev'ry knee to him shall bow.

Crown him! Crown him!

Crowns become the Victor's brow.

2 Crown the Savior, angels, crown him;

rich the trophies Jesus brings;

in the seat of pow'r enthrone him,

while the vault of heaven rings.

Crown him! Crown him!

Crown the Savior King of kings.

3 Sinners in derision crowned him,

mocking thus the Savior's claim;

saints and angels crowd around him,

own his title, praise his name.

Crown him! Crown him!

Spread abroad the Victor's fame!

4 Hark! those bursts of acclamation!

Hark! those loud triumphant chords!

Jesus takes the highest station;

O what joy the sight affords!

Crown him! Crown him!

King of kings and Lord of lords.

 question: Will you be there to honour the King of Kings and Lord of Lords who HAS BEEN GIVEN SUCH GLORY BY GOD THE FATHER.

Joh 17:5  And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.

 ill. Have you ever been rightly proud? 

- Receiving an award - school, civic, 

- Proud of a family member - getting a degree, etc.

 question: Will that right kind of pride begin to compare with what we will feel in our heart when we see the glorified Lord Jesus Christ and partake of His glory as ONE OF THOSE REDEEMED BY HIS BLOOD SHED ON THE OLD RUGGED CROSS?

note: Incredible honour our's to be partakers of the glory of God.

in contrast:

12  That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

exp. This group ought to hang their heads in shame. THEY DESPISED THE OLD RUGGED CROSS AND THE KING OF GLORY WHO DIED BECAUSE OF THEIR SIN.

 app. Stand fast - God has called you to partake of the glory of Jesus!

 

IV. Stand fast, because God has instructed you.

15  Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.

note: Paul knew that the church at Thesalonica could stand because God had revealed His truth unto them. "Hold the traditions which ye have been taught...."

exp. The traditions is the body of truth given verbally by the apostles as well as by letters from the apostles. It is the apostles doctrine.

 note: Doctrine (truth upon which faith is based) is vital to standing fast. 

ill. When Paul told the church at Ephesus to stand, he emphasized doctrine.

Eph 6:14  Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth,

Eph 6:17  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

Eph 6:16  Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

 ill. Paul told his preacher boy, Timothy, CONTINUE IN THE DOCTRINE.

1Ti 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.

ill. in evangelism - I'll share the importance of doctrine with a building illustration - You don't build a house without a standard of measurement. (If you did it wouldn't stand.) But, when you use a proper standard it is built to stand.

 app. Your Christian life is only as strong as it's adherance to the standard.

Mat 7:24  Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

in contrast:

11  And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:

 exp. Many people believe STRONGLY ....

evolution - in the beinning there was a big bang

atheism - there was nothing in the beginning

false religion - Jesus is not God, good people go to heaven....

BUT THEIR BELIEF IS BASED ON THEMSELVES, ON RELIGION, ON "SCIENCE"

NOTE: They reject sound doctrine.... and they can't stand.

2Ti 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;

app. If your faith is based upon God's word this morning, you have strong faith. Rom 10:17  So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. 

If you want God's instruction - GO TO GOD'S WORD AND STAND FAST!

 

V. Stand fast, God's grace to you is timeless - It is past, present and future.

16  Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace,

exp. The trinity is in our text this morning - we have The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit.

def. Grace - God's unmerited favour. God doing for us what we could not do for ourselves and which we did not deserve.

 note: I see three time periods of grace to believers given in this passage.

1.) Grace in the past - the cross "hath loved us"

Joh 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Rom 8:32  He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?

 ill. Witnessing to Mohammed - up here for the Muslim ritual holy day Eid-al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice) where they focus on the story of Abraham offering Isaac. Mohammed said, "What struck me is the Son allowing the father to sacrifice him.

exp. I shared that this took place on Mt. Moriah - the same place where God the father sacrificed His Son - who allowed himself to be placed on the cross - for our sin. 

 app. God did something by grace for you on that day - "loved us."

2.) Grace in the present - "everlasting consolation"

def. Consolation is comfort. God has given us eternal comfort.

Joh 14:16  And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

Joh 14:26  But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

Joh 15:26  But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

Joh 16:7  Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

question: Do you know the solace of the One within you who is the Comforter sent by Jesus from the Father.? Have you tasted the fruit of the Spirit in your life?

Galatians 5:22  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

23  Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

 app. What unmerited Favour that God put such a Comforter into our hearts.

3.) Grace in the future - "good hope through grace."

ill. Mum and Dad moving - the house they are purchasing is being fixed up by my mom's cousins family - sweet Christians. They are skilled builders - mum was worried about everything - but Aaron told them - this is a normal project for us - Aaron is looking forward to the big reveal.

 app.  God has a big reveal planned for us. That expectation is in the heart of every child of God. HEAVEN - THE PRESENCE OF GOD IN GLORY FOR ALL ETERNITY IS OUR EXPECTATION!

question: Are you experiencing God's past, present and future grace in your life? Stand Fast!

in contrast:

v.10 ...because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

note: Unbelievers don't have grace to partake of God's love, comfort or hope. 

 ill. 2 publicans - at Waverley - talking about smoking, wanting to quit, but needing it. We talked and they understood that much of mental health was just sin and no relationship with God.

app. If that is you this morning, you don't have to stay there. You can have God's grace - past, present and future. Believers - you've got it! stand fast!

 

VI. Stand fast, God will comfort your heart.

17  Comfort your hearts, 

exp. The Spirit of God has brought us into a very close relationship with God the Father.

Rom 8:15  For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.

Gal 4:6  And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.

 ill. There is something wonderful about a father's presence to take away fear. Becoming scared of Thunderstorms after a close lightening strike that I thought blinded me. For 6 months afterwards, I slept in my parents bedroom during storms. Why? Because if dad was there it was going to be all right.

app. Is life rough? Have you run to your Father for his comfort?

Matthew 6:6  But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

7  But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.

8  Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.

9  After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven,

ill. Jesus would run to his father, "(At Lazarus grave) Father, I know thou hearest me always...." "(In the garden) Father.... if it be possible...." It was impossible that it should be otherwise - but the angel strengthened him and Jesus went to the cross by the grace of a loving Father.

in contrast:

10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish;

 ill. Study this past week revealed homosexuality is not genetic - this ought to shake the faith of those who say, "They were born that way." I hope the day is coming when evolution is proven untrue - Oh, how I love it when the world is shown THE SHAKY FOUNDATION OF THEIR FAITH. There is none to comfort them, but a drink, a smoke, a drug, a falsehood, a shaky government promise.

app. But, we have the Father to comfort our hearts. Stand fast believer, God will comfort your heart.

 

VII. Stand fast, God will establish you.

and stablish you in every good word and work.

ill. Roslin - homes are being built left and right. They aren't going together of themselves but the builders are putting them together. They are establishing the home.

Eph 2:20  20  And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;

21  In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:

22  In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.

Php 1:6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

exp. Don't fret believer. Obey God and do your part. But, know this - the work God is doing in your life is HIS WORK. 

 ill. Molding a Masterpiece - Ron Hamilton 

Master Potter, why do You labor all day,

Giving such effort to rough, worthless pieces of clay?

Why such feeling in Your hands? Why such care in every touch?

Why all the struggle? Your creation is nothing but dust.

I'm molding a masterpiece, a work of great beauty.

I'm molding a masterpiece; My labor's not done.

A trophy, a treasure or worth beyond measure

I'm molding a masterpiece, a masterpiece of love.

app. Be patient Christian - stand fast - God is at work. Let him establish your words and work for His glory.

in contrast:

10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

11  And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:

12  That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

ill. Witnessing to a neighbor - come with me and see what alcohol has done to men's lives....

app. Unbelievers are not being built up, they are being torn down by sin and and will be damned not established by God.

 

conclusion: STAND FAST

 

1) God took you to Himself.

2) God purified you by faith.

3) God called you to partake of the glory of Jesus.

4) God instructed you.

5) God's grace is for you - past, present and future.

6) God's comforts your heart.

7) God is establishing you.

 

 

THEREFOR STAND FAST BELOVED BRETHREN!

THEREFOR STAND FAST BELOVED BRETHREN!