21st January 2024

Progressive Revelation

Passage: John 16:12-15, Isaiah 28:9-13, 1 Corinthians 3:1-3, 2:1-2, Romans 8:34-39, Psalms 81:10-16
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Automatically Generated Transcript

Was the attitude with which some students came out the end believing they'd learned all things. And there was a little Bible college in Adelaide, a very good one, which they invited me when we were pastoring in Adelaide to come along and to lecture in. And so I got to know the people there. It was an excellent place and the teaching was sound. But we did get a graduate from there to come to my next church in Sydney and he had done the three years. And they had got them in the final third year to write a position paper on difficult issues. And when he'd written the paper on a few different issues, he believed he didn't need to think about those issues anymore and he had come to a place he could stick to the rest of his life. I found that a big problem because where he was sticking to was not the same doctrines that I was preaching. And he was my co-preacher. And we were very similar in other areas and he was an excellent person to have on staff. But the idea that after three years you had it all and didn't need to advance further, but you could live your life out on what you gain is the biggest. It's the biggest mistake you can make if you're going to Bible college or if you're going to go somewhere to get the good doctrines. It takes a lifetime of trusting God as he leads you through the scriptures and you never get to the point of knowing it all. As a matter of fact, those that followed Jesus around, Peter, James and John, you know, the twelve disciples, they were a subset of those who actually followed the Lord. So, as a matter of fact, those who actually followed the Lord, sometimes in the scriptures, the word disciple is a reference to all the people that followed this itinerant teacher, Jesus, and would learn a bit from him and go back home. But those who were called disciples in the stricter sense were those who'd answered his call to actually travel with him, to follow him, and learn as they did the following. And they were the twelve who later became his apostles. And Jesus had them for three years. Now, that little Bible college I talked about only had people like me. But these, the twelve apostles to be, they had Jesus and they followed him for three years. They watched his actions. They had personal treatment from him. Don't you think that they'd be better off to think that they had learned it all? Well, we've got a Bible verse here of Jesus near the end of the period of the three years with them. And just before he's about to go to the cross and to be crucified and then three days or so later risen and eventually 40 days after that go back to heaven, just before the end of their Bible college experience, this is what Jesus said. I still have many things to say to you. This is in John 16 verse 12. I still have many things to say to you but you cannot be... Bear them now. Jesus wasn't going to go on talking because they couldn't take it in. He assessed that they were not able to bear his going on teaching them. Now, that's amazing because it was Jesus teaching them directly, personally for three years and yet just before he's about to leave, he says, I still have many things to say to you but you... But you cannot bear them. I don't know whether you're aware of the fact that Jesus sees you as not necessarily able to take what he really wants to tell you. Are you aware of the fact that the Bible, in all of its teaching, examples what the theologians now call progressive revelation. And progressive revelation is nothing to do with contradicting some earlier truth and saying it was wrong. It's not correcting things. But it is the fact that God always has the problem with humanity that we humanity can't take in all the things he'd want to tell us. It is just because he's God and infinite with all wisdom and we have developmental problems and that sometimes we're not up to a stage of being... of being able to take it in. And Jesus saw that in his disciples a part of why they couldn't take it in because... was because he was saying he's going to go to the cross. He was predicting his own death and that made them so sorrowful but it also brought to them like they couldn't understand that he's meant to be the Messiah. He's the Christ that we've been expecting. He's meant to take over the world and we're going to be there with him to help, you know, lead. Why is he talking about dying? And they had a sorrow because Jesus kept saying in these last times just before the crucifixion that he was going to leave them. That's a part of their sorrow because they couldn't understand how Jesus seemed to be leading at that moment. And there are some of you this morning who may be having a problem that's not written on your faces as yet but in your hearts you're feeling it that you're not quite sure how to trust him because you can't interpret or do not understand what's been happening recently with you. I wonder if Jesus is looking at you and saying, I still have many things to say to you but you cannot bear them now. That's what he said to them. And the idea that God reveals things step by step and bit by bit and he does it according to how he sees our capacity to receive that this principle of progressive revelation is also built upon the fact that what's a big factor in it is our receptivity. How ready are you to receive from Jesus? There actually is an experience that many young people we've been concentrating on the youth and the young adults but it's an experience that many people growing into adult have when they suddenly realise the depth of spirituality that the Christian life really needs and they make steps to go deeper. And many a resume, many a biography that you can get and read of someone that God has eventually used has gone through a phase where he had to somehow take them through difficult times, times of learning where they came to realise that they were not ready to receive much from him and needed to be disciplined or needed to be taught basics. There are the basics that you had to receive. Do you know that one of the prophets of the Old Testament, Isaiah, had a reputation problem because people, his own people, the Israelites and the Samaritans, the Samariaites, which are the northern tribes, those people, they criticised him because he had a style of teaching. And in the style of teaching they said, you don't hardly say anything understandable and there's a passage in Isaiah, we'll go to Isaiah and where are we? We're going to, but chapter 28 and verses 11, 12 and 13. Chapter 28 and here in starting at verse 9, to whom will he teach knowledge? And the popular opinion of Isaiah, now the scholars who comment on it believe that this is a record of his bad reputation. To whom will he teach knowledge and to whom will he explain the message? Those who are weaned from the milk, those who have taken, just been taken from the breasts and so some of the leaders of the Israelites said, just the bubbers, the stuff he's giving for them, it's too simple. For it is, and this is how they saw his methodology of teaching, for it is precept upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, and there a little. For what Isaiah was having to do because of their immaturity and because of their waywardness and because they were not spiritual people was to break things down so simple that he had to keep it that way and they were describing it as one of his faults. You know there is a ministry that's available today that lands, is taken off from this chapter of Isaiah and this very idea is called precept ministry. It's actually a very good Bible teaching, and there are people from Baptist churches in Brisbane who've gone overseas to be trained to come back and to give this precept ministry, but it's actually based on the idea that you don't try and tell people everything at first, but you give them line upon line, precept upon precept. It's called precept ministry and if you've heard of it, please don't go and say our pastor was saying bad things, it's just what the people back in Isaiah's day said about Isaiah. But in actual fact, it's what Isaiah had to do because of their lack of spirituality and because of their sinfulness and both in the southern tribe called Judah and the northern part which was called Samaria, there was a major problem of drunkenness and they used to get in a mood whereby they'd laugh at everything and couldn't take it seriously because they were actually sozzles and when he had serious things to say as to what they were doing wrong and that God was going to come and judge, which he did and Samaria came under judgment very soon after this being said by Isaiah, but they laughed at it and they had the attitude to spiritual things, ha ha ha ha, that stupid old prophet, look at him, he can't do a thing, he's just, and then they'd make jokes in their drunkenness. That's where this comes from. But nonetheless, Jesus took on this method too and so, we'll look at John's Gospel and we'll look where John is speaking in John chapter 16 and John chapter 16 is where Jesus, as I just quoted to you before, he said to his disciples right before his three years Bible college time, if you like, and finish with them, I still have many things to say to you but you cannot bear them now. And it is a truth that there is a principle about receptivity about receptivity that as you grow a little bit and learn spiritually your capacity increases to learn more but if you come to some spot that stumbles you, if you become a backslider from God, you're still a Christian but you're someone who's turned off the leadership of the Spirit, you do that by disobedience. The only way to turn it back on is to go back to where you turned it off and repent of that and turn it on. Ask God to show you how is it that you haven't got. His Spirit working in you and you seem not to be progressing. The reason why you're not progressing is because you turned off what God said last time and he's not in the business of wasting his impress, wasting his leadership. Jesus went on to say when the Spirit of Truth comes he will guide you into all truth. And the reason why Jesus had that to say to them wasn't only because they were a cranky bunch of complainers, they actually were pretty good for disciples, but because this is all pre the giving of the Holy Spirit. And the giving of the Holy Spirit would give them some capacity inwardly to be taught of God. The Gospel is that when you come to Jesus and you come and receive his forgiveness because of how he died for you on the cross, at that moment you not only get to be right with God but you get the gift of the Holy Spirit but that Holy Spirit was only available from the day of Pentecost on when the old covenant was changed and the new covenant was begun and the difference between the two precisely is that the new covenant offers the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit and when he's in your life that changes your receptivity. And one of the major problems that there are of people who are in Christendom and I use that more generalized term to refer to people who would say they hold Christian beliefs, who do believe in God, have been taught to the Ten Commandments and are trying in many cases to go to church but have never had an experience where they've actually come and received the Spirit of God at a moment of personal conversion. They don't have what we'll take and the disciples were examples of that development when Jesus had finished his three-year Bible course with them because there was to come a time when the Holy Spirit would be available and that's when the Holy Spirit would be available. That's what he's referring to when the Spirit of Truth comes. Look at it there in verse 13. He will guide you into all truth for he will not speak of his own authority. Whatever he hears, he will speak. He's hearing from heaven. Jesus will be the Lord of heaven who communicates through by his Holy Spirit in the hearts of the believers but the believers who were apostles to be and those who were Israelites who wanted to follow their Messiah, they were not yet Christians in the sense that the day of Pentecost, was to have Peter give the call to as many as the Lord our God shall call, he says, to come and know repentance from your sin and to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit and you're not a Christian. He that has the Spirit has life. He that does not have the Spirit of God does not have life is the testimony of the New Testament that you have to come into the age of the Spirit to be able to go on as a Christian and to learn further and to be able to go on as a Christian and in people who have come to that conversion point. Often they have a growing time just around their knowing more about their forgiveness but then there comes a time when they go deeper and whether it is a person like a missionary person who suddenly had an experience that made them go deeper or whether it was someone that had a crisis in their life and it caused them to go weeping to God in prayer and realizing that they were a shallow Christian. Do you know that God offers, He offers a lot of comfort for people who go through crises but the time that you need to have a deepening of your spiritual life is not when you get into the crisis. The time that you need to have a developing of your spiritual life is prior to your coming to a time of crisis and a growth period that sets you up ready to handle it and Jesus knows for many of us that we're not ready to bear too much of that teaching. We need to have an opening of our hearts to let Him lead us and teach us that we be prepared. When folk get into the older years, I watch my parents grow older and have to handle my mother stricken by a type of disease that meant that she could hardly move. She could think but she was stopped from being able to move by this Parkinson's state that she got. But she was a godly woman who had for many years gone on into the deeper things. She was one of my intercessors who had a gift to know when God was speaking to her and when she came into this time and ill health in her later years she was prepared to be able to handle it. I saw when I used to visit them in the old folks' home that there were others who were Baptist folk who were a part of the establishment but who couldn't handle what it was to be an old person in an old folks' home because something had not happened. There is this principle of progressive revelation that isn't only what is happening through the Bible and you can see the progressive revelation of God through all the scriptures from the very beginning days in the Garden of Eden through to the various steps of his dealing with Israel on from the Old Covenant into the New Covenant which is the very step I'm talking about and have been teaching on that the New Covenant involves the presence of the Holy Spirit in your life. But even for us in our personal experience if you were to sit down and wanted to write on an exercise book your steps of your spiritual growth you'd discover that you could put down various things that were steps of suddenly increasing and sometimes it has to be a bit like Billy Graham as a young man his engagement broke down and the girl chose someone else who looked like having more promise rather silly girl she must have been but she chose someone that she thought would offer a bigger career and he was so wounded that he just devoted himself to begin the days down in the basement where they had a heating device so he didn't have to freeze and pray to God trying to pray about his relationships and you know a bit of a mess but God let that happen to him because it woke him up and he became someone who went deeper someone that was beginning to ask God to make him go deeper and to teach him more and he became a person who whenever he was at the church and he shifted to a new college Wheaton College I heard all the stories because I went to the same church eventually and there's a lot of people a lot of stories told about him and he was at this college and every service where the preacher would give a call he went forward didn't have to go forward he'd become a Christian long ago but is there something more he can learn is there another step he can take he would respond and he'd respond and he'd respond again they got used to the fact that if you had a strong message Billy Graham would go forward and he went through a time where somehow his spirituality went for a dive into the great depths which come out and came out in his ministry that followed or you can read books about people such as G. Campbell Morgan he was a great preacher from a hundred years previously and this fellow about a hundred and this fellow G. Campbell Morgan went through a time where people challenged him from all of the latest ideas that Christian scholars were having which were all doubts how not to trust the Bible and he came to a place of obviously not knowing how to preach because his style of preaching was to believe the Bible and suddenly they made him wonder whether he was actually doing the right thing to believe what the Bible said and he went through a whole time of questioning and he couldn't handle it he went and tried to buy books up scholarly books on apologetics and they were all over his head so he didn't know what to do so he went down to whatever was the Bible society of those days and he got a new Bible and he says I'm going to read the Gospels Matthew, Mark, Luke and John I'm going to Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and keep reading Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and I'm going to ask God to speak to me if these really are the word of God and for two years he read only Matthew, Mark, Luke and John but something happened and he went deeper in his soul something happened that he became a person the personality that comes out of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John began to come out of his preaching and he became so famous as an expositional teacher of the scriptures because God took him to go on further but he had to have the crisis of thinking somehow he couldn't go on preaching that crisis was of what God allowed to happen because he needed to be taken on further and it could well be there's someone who's come this morning and God has got this message for you to tell you you've got to be deeper than what you are now when the spirit of truth comes he will teach you he will guide you into all truth now what's interesting it goes on to say some of the things he'll speak about for whatever he hears he will speak that's what he gets from Christ the Lord he communicates on he'll declare to you the things that are to come that's about the second coming there's one of the professors at Dallas Seminary who wrote a book the title of which is Things to Come it's called it's a great tome of going through all the prophecies of the second coming of Christ and you just have to have one to be able to track down all the arguments in that area but there are some folk who say that's all too complicated I keep my Christianity away from those squabbles but Jesus said he will declare to you the things that are to come as a matter of fact he will speak to you about things that are to come and what's available because of his resurrection I found a verse I think it is one that I'm wanting to quote here and it is in well we've been in John 16 in verse 12 so let's just see if we can track down the verse I'm looking for no it's not a verse in John it's a verse in Corinthians let's go to 1 Corinthians and chapter 3 here's the Apostle Paul and the Apostle Paul is recognising the same truth with the Corinthians even though they're post the new covenant and they are a Christian church and not just a group of Israelites who've got a Messiah to teach them but Paul says in 1 Corinthians 3 but brothers I could not address you as spiritual people but I could not address you as spiritual people but I could not address you but as people of the flesh being contrasted as being a spiritual person or a fleshly person now it doesn't mean you've got too much weight on it doesn't mean it's talking about a metaphor of the flesh that stands as a stand-in for humanity and there are people whose spirituality is more overwhelming than their human drives and there are people whose human drives are more overwhelming than their human drives and there are people whose human drives are more overwhelming than their human drives than their human drives and if that's the case you're someone who's more a person of the flesh even now this is where Jesus is speaking I fed you with no this is Paul speaking I fed you with milk not solid food and if you have a church that's got a people who are all young and never really come to a place of much of an appetite the sermons you've got to give are going to be full of anecdotes and little titty-bitties you've got to be more of popular preaching who can be winsome with your jokes I'm not saying it's necessarily wrong to have jokes it's not necessarily wrong with being winsome I sometimes wish I could be more winsome but I want to say to you that there is such a thing as your message giving strong meat or just milk and Paul is saying to them I fed you with milk not solid food for you are still of the flesh for while there is jealousy and strife amongst you are you not of the flesh behaving only in a human way for when one says I follow Paul and another says I'm for with Apollos are you not merely being human failing to recognise the deepest dance that you listen to anybody bringing the word of God and you don't necessarily follow human leadership but you follow God's leadership it's one of the principles of Baptist churches that we believe in the spirit's existence in the church to lead the church so it isn't just the fact that you're going to follow some human idea as to what should happen it is that the members are meant to try and discern how God is leading when one says I follow Paul and another I follow Apollos are you not being merely human let's go back to 1 Corinthians in chapter 2 1 Corinthians chapter 2 verses 1 and 2 Paul speaking again much on the same topic and he says and I when I came to you brothers did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom the Greek wisdom was very lofty and he was saying I'm not relying on how I could give you the philosophy to make you convinced for I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified now this has been a bit of an evangelist motto it's been a bit of a dedicated Bible believing Christian's rule of thumb to know nothing except Jesus and him crucified but actually although it's a good motto and it's not a bad one to have if you've got to have a simplistic motto but I want to tell you that it's a misunderstanding of what Paul is saying in this very spot he's not saying that it's good that he couldn't tell him anything except Jesus and him crucified he was saying that those first principles he had to stick to because of how shallow they were and that's exactly what you do when you're an itinerant preacher going around there are some places you go where you have to stick to the shallow message because they're not able to receive anything else and only when they've been truly converted by understanding the message of the cross can they go on because that's where you get the Holy Spirit when you come to the cross and you know that deep forgiveness and you have the Holy Spirit then you can learn other things Paul was actually making a comment about how little he can go to deeper things that's what this passage is actually about I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified now if you like me love this verse which I do I would not accept it if you were the preacher and I were listening because I love the verse I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified but the truth is that Paul was someone who could speak about the fact that he went further than that and we've got verses 1 to 2 let's go to Romans in chapter 8 Romans in chapter 8 now what I'm doing is tracking through Paul's statements so that you can be convinced along with me now that although the first principle is definitely the cross and Jesus crucified so Jesus his person and the fact that he died for our sins is essential first principles I'm not arguing with that I think I've been mentioning in recent Sundays about that book The Pilgrim's Progress and if any of you have actually been moved to go and get a copy and read it it'd do you a lot of good but what happens to Christian the bloke who has to walk the progress of the Christian Pilgrim's Progress is the name of the book what happens is that he meets up with evangelists who has to show him a little separate pathway that leads down to a cross and back in the days when that book first became famous and through the centuries people often talk about this statement of the Bible I preach only Christ and him crucified as the fact that in Pilgrim's Progress the little road down to the cross was a straight road a simple road and you couldn't get off it you went down there and you went to the cross and had your burdens lifted and then you come back to the main task of walking your way and so you can talk about the straightened road straight to the cross straightened because it won't let you get off in any sidestep and people do need to be led of God just to the cross and if you've never actually done business at the cross about your sin if there's never been a moment when you got that deep assurance that you belong to Christ all the rest of my trying to preach to you won't do any good you won't be able to bear it because until you've come to the cross you're not ready to be a pilgrim and making progress that's the whole lesson of that little part of the book but that's good for a motto for preachers it's good for people who've never come to Christ but I want to tell you that it's not the full story and so the Apostle Paul said and I think I don't have the right verse but he says and it's in the beginning of where do we where should we go to I think it's in the beginning of Corinthians 1 Corinthians is that there we go when I came to you brothers I did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God lofty speech and wisdom for I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified but later on Paul says we do preach Christ crucified and rather Christ risen from the grave and so he begins to show them that the gospel includes more than just that Jesus died the gospel includes a very hefty part of understanding from the fact that he rose from the dead as a matter of fact the gospel messages in the book of Acts more concentrate on the resurrection of Christ than they do on his crucifixion the gospels might concentrate on the crucifixion but the resurrection is at the heart of apostolic preaching but not only the resurrection of Jesus from the cross but also his ascension and what is there to bless us from the ascension of Christ but that he was crowned as king of kings and lord of lords and at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow and there's a learning that you go into when you suddenly get confronted with the fact that this Jesus who died for you is the same Jesus who rose for you he's the Jesus who went to heaven to open it up for you and has become the intercessor of the right hand of God and there's what some preachers call intercessory ministries or ministries about Jesus intercession which is about showing us how important it is to know that Jesus right now is at God's right hand and he's praying for us and he's our intercessor and he's the reason why we're not worried about all the troubles that might come our way because he knows that he's praying for you boy was that a learning that I went through as a person already a strong Christian someone gospelizing others as a preacher but I had to learn that what Jesus has done didn't stop at Calvary it didn't stop at the resurrection tomb it continued in his ascension it continued in his ministry and is continuing now so one of the great things that we learn to teach people to help them go on and to progress in their sanctification is that he's living as a progress as a saviour and in that saviourhood he is your intercessor it's a marvellous thing when you know there's someone who's praying for you Jesus he's the one who turned up for Paul when Paul was like in prison or before the trials that he had Jesus comes and says don't worry he's in Paul's in prison waiting shaking perhaps Jesus stood by Paul and says don't worry Paul as I was with you in Jerusalem so I'll be with you with you with you in Rome he will not leave you his final promise at the Great Commission I will never leave you nor forsake you and the fact that your intercessor is before the throne of God and praying for you is a part of a blessing that's ours when we rest in him but I haven't finished the list from the death of Christ the resurrection of Christ to the ascension of Christ to the fall of Christ to the fact of his ascension ministry he's praying for us and sending the Holy Spirit where he sees our our needing it there's another one what is it? what is it? it's a part of the gospel it's a part of the gospel a lot of people don't know there's another part of the gospel he's coming back yes were you in the prayer meeting? and Alan had a point to make about Christians pilgrimages has to take into account the return of Jesus and what that involves for them and the teaching of the second coming somehow does something to the fellowship of the church that understands it and when you understand about Jesus that he's coming back that's a part of the gospel that sanctifies you it talks about how we know we're getting like him and when he does come back we're suddenly going to see it's an amazing thing being a father and although I've been sworn a few times not to give too many illustrations from home I'm a disobedient one and I'll give you one more because it's fascinating when you watch your kids and they're like and they do things without them being aware of it that they're copying you you hope they don't copy your bad parts but you do also notice that they often seem to like being like you I see them my girls being like their mother and doing lots of things that she does it's an amazing thing in families about how we're designed to be like our families and like our parents that's a good thing when the parents are walking with Christ but when Jesus comes one of the things you're going to realise intuitively is that when you see him you'll recognise how much you have been undergoing change to be like him and it's family reunion Jesus coming back because the whole message of what Jesus went through has direct relevance to what the Spirit is going to be making us into and the sanctification that occurs through our lives is getting us ready to be revealed on the final day as his trophies and he'll have us all on display of what his salvation has produced and all the the the the the of the creation will look and see and what they'll see is you like him that's your destiny to be more and more like Jesus and he wants it to happen now I've got a final thing to finish my message today if we could go to the book of Psalms which we had Joey read to us Psalm and that one Psalm I want is the one which is which is the Bible reading in Psalm 81 verses 10 to 16 this is coming about the old covenant people and their failure to get the benefit from the old covenant a lesson for us in the new covenant is not to miss out the same way I am the Lord your God who brought you up out of the land of Egypt now for us we're the ones who by his cross has brought it out us to the land of sin and judgment then he says open your mouth wide and I will fill it now this is a strange verse and the first time I read that was when I was thinking to use it at a marriage and telling to tell the people to open their mouths wide because there was a habit that wealthy kings and leaders in the old world used to do when they had important guests and they would have the important guests there for a big banquet and then they'd get them and tell them open your mouth wide and the servants would come along and pour into their mouths precious jewels and they got as much as they could receive and if you were at someone who was very wealthy and was known for his diamonds you would get a lot of money and you'd get a lot of money and you'd get a lot of money and you'd get a lot of money to get as many as I could hope I didn't swallow any that's where this statement comes from God is saying I brought you out of the land of Egypt to leave you a pauper to leave you with nothing to make you suffer open your mouth wide and I will fill it it's that this this is the way that God is saying open your mouth wide open your mouth wide open your mouth wide open your mouth wide progressive revelation takes us through to a spot where it's really speaking to whether or not we've understood the principle of receptivity you'll end up getting from God what you're actually able to receive and if you leave yourself stunted if you leave yourself backslidden if you leave yourself on the bare scraps you get by sneaking back and getting right with him when you really have to but you stay on doing your own track you won't have anything you might get into heaven by the skin of your teeth or as Paul explained some people get into heaven but with no no rewards but if you understand the principle of receptivity is connected to this idea of progressive revelation that God is wanting to go on revealing to you more and more so that you become richer and richer in spirit and you can become more and more and he wants to pour into your understanding things about him they come through the word of God and the more you receive them the more your acuity to receive is increased and how you open your mouth wide is that you let his word so minister to you that your capacity to understand and your sense of discernment of the list of the speaking of Jesus is increased and you become sensitive to what the Lord is trying to say to you and you grow boy being an itinerant and travelling around different churches especially when we were in Tasmania did I meet a lot of really powerful old saints often they weren't known to be anything but just an elder in a brethren chapel or something but they had become so rich and after you've been there preaching they wanted to have you there for lunch and they'd say have you seen this verse and if you see that verse and they'd say the things that God taught them and suddenly I'd realise because I was a young man that I was in the presence of people who knew far more than me because they've had a lifetime of opening their mouth wide some of them had habits of spending hours reading the Bible every day not getting bogged down and so making money that you don't have any time for the scriptures but somehow making the opening of the Bible of your mind and your person wide so that you could be blessed and they used to bless me I'd have people coming to visit me to give me advice I praised God for them because they had very true things to say the opposite happened but my people did not listen to my voice Israel that's the northern tribes would not submit to me they got run over they were the first ones to get to the church attacked and beaten so I gave them over to their stubborn hearts listen as God got you here this morning because he wants you to go through a time like Billy Graham did it doesn't mean you'll be another Billy Graham we all have different callings but it's something where he gets you to understand that he wants to teach you I praise God for being at the Salisbury Baptist Church because in this church what I'm talking about has happened to me and I found I could be a person very heady and I've got a big library and I can give doctrines right I've been trained I've got eight degrees I should be able to do something with it but I've discovered that when I come into this sanctuary and I ask God to speak to me and give me something for you this is what he's given me for today learn to open your mouth wide and let him take you on because he has so much to give you but at the moment you're too shallow and he wants you to do it different and go deeper with him and you'll become a person that he can fill you with diamonds of truth and of wisdom if you'll let him do it let's pray Heavenly Father I thank you for the morning I thank you Heavenly Father for the scriptures I thank you Lord for I thank you Lord for that verse open your mouth wide and I will fill it boy how different is that from the one we started with I've got so much more to tell you but you can't bear it Lord would you take us from being people that Jesus looks at and he says you can't bear it yet will you take us by the Holy Spirit he's the one that makes the trenches deep would you take us to be those who are so deep that we're filled with the fullness of the wisdom of God and the things that you have to teach us Lord help us to open our mouths wide and let us so that you may fill us with all the wisdom and the teaching and the wonders of God we ask in Jesus name Amen.

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