(We will be suspending the teaching series on the principles of judging for the next fourteen days so that I might keep my word, and post the 'fourteen teachings in fourteen days'. Although it would be easier for me just to continue posting the series, it would be disingenuous since I had already started the series, and planned on seeing it through. As promised, this is the first of fourteen teachings entitled 'three things you will never hear God say!')
When it comes to preaching the Word of God I have always believed that in order for a message to have impact, in order for it to stir the hearts of the hearers, preparation must be coupled with divine inspiration. One can have the most eloquent, polished, and nuanced of sermons yet see it fall flat simply because it was not what the people in that particular congregation needed to hear. And so, I prepare, and extensively so, I read the Word, I meditate upon it, I pray for guidance and understanding, but I never enter a church with a pre-formulated sermon, a canned presentation that although intellectually challenging does nothing to stir the heart.
I was sitting near the back of a friend’s church in Michigan recently, and as is my custom, I was praying for inspiration, for God to give me the message that I was supposed to share that evening. Suddenly, within the span of thirty seconds, God poured the message I was to share into my heart, both clearly and concisely. I had never preached it before, never even thought of approaching the subject matter in that way, yet the message was there, title and all, three things you will never hear God say.
The first thing you will never hear God say is: ‘I didn’t really mean that!’
I realize full well that there are certain men within Christendom that have made it their life’s mission to convince the sheep of God’s pasture that there are certain things He didn’t mean in His word. I also realize that more individuals than we would like to believe have given in to this seducing spirit, because it is pleasing to the flesh, it takes the narrow path of faith and turns it into a twelve lane superhighway, and as an added bonus eliminates the need to pursue holiness, righteousness, and a life separate from the world and the things of the world.
Although countless voices continue to croon and attempt to convince that God didn’t really mean what He said in His word, you will never hear God say He didn’t really mean it.
When we stand before His holy face, when on that great and terrible day of the Lord we will be called to give account for our lives, attempted justifications such as ‘I thought You were just exaggerating, or I didn’t think you really meant that’ just won’t do.
God does not mince words, He is not a double minded politician, He is not duplicitous in His nature, and if He said something He meant it.
Matthew 24:35, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.”
The second thing you will never hear God say is: ‘I love you, but not enough to forgive your past!’
When a heart surrenders and repents before God, there are no qualifiers, there are no conjunctions; God simply forgives. If you happen to be reading this today, and you’ve been thinking to yourself that God can never forgive what you did, it is the enemy that is whispering this in your ear. Repent and He will forgive, give Him your heart and He will make it His home, seek Him and you will find Him. He is a good God, He is a forgiving God, He is a loving God, He is a merciful God, and in His infinite grace, in His infinite mercy in His infinite goodness He sent His Son Jesus to shed His blood and die for our sins that we might be forgiven, and reconciled unto Him.
You will never hear God say He loves you but not enough to forgive you, because He has demonstrated the limitless depth of His love through Jesus Christ. Repent and be restored, repent and be forgiven, repent and be reconciled.
Acts 3:19-21, “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that He may send Jesus Christ, who was preached to you before, whom heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began.”
Although it is frequently used by Jesus, as well as the Apostles throughout the gospel, the word ‘repent’ seems to have fallen out of favor with the modern day church. It is to our detriment that we neglect repentance, because without repentance there can be no forgiveness.
True repentance implies more than just feeling regret or remorse, it implies more than just feeling sorry for our past actions, true repentance demands that we turn away from the sins which ensnare us, and embrace the forgiveness, the mercy, the grace and the life of Christ.
The third thing you will never hear God say is: ‘I didn’t see that one coming!’
One of the most errant, deceptive and destructive doctrines making its way through the house of God, is that He does not know the future. I’ve heard it on more than one occasion, from men who considered themselves spiritually mature, and each time I hear it I get this sick feeling in the pit of my stomach.
‘God’s as much in the dark as we are brother. He doesn’t know what’s going to happen, it’s as shocking to Him as it is to us.’ Really? Are you sure? Then how did Micah know that Bethlehem would be the birthplace of the Messiah? Then how did Isaiah know that Jesus would be born of a virgin, be wounded and bruised, oppressed and afflicted, or that He would be buried in a rich man’s tomb? Then how did Zechariah know that the Christ would be betrayed for the price of a slave?
I could go on, for pages and pages since we haven’t even touched the prophecies of Jesus concerning the last days, or the book of Revelation, but I think you get my point.
God is sovereign, He is omniscient, He knows the end from the beginning, He exists outside of time and space as we perceive it, and there is absolutely nothing that happens in this entire universe without His foreknowledge.
It would seem as though man is no longer trying to build a tower high enough to reach God, but rather in his pride and arrogance man is trying to bring God down to his level.
‘No way God can know more than me! I have a college degree, and even the requisite pedigree. Even the thought that I am not the master of my own destiny, the captain of my own ship, and the ruler of my domain is anathema to me!’
And so, we dismiss the loving warnings of a loving God, we do away with those parts of the Bible that forewarn us of the coming days because well, we just don’t like them, and chalk it all up to the notion that God is a reactionary being as much of mankind tends to be, and each new day is filled with a myriad of surprises for Him just as it would be for us.
It is not so! God is neither ignorant nor blind, and if He has spoken it, He will also bring it to pass.
Isaiah 46:9-13, “Remember the former things of old, for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure,’ Calling a bird of prey from the east, the man who executes my counsel from a far country. Indeed I have spoken it; I will also bring it to pass. I have purposed it; I will also do it. Listen to Me, you stubborn-hearted, who are far from righteousness: I bring My righteousness near, it shall not be far off; My salvation shall not linger. And I will place salvation in Zion for Israel My glory.”
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.