Topical Sermons


April, 2001

1. 1 Pet. 4:11 - We intend only to speak as God's word has spoken.
2. Acts 17:11-12 - Ask you to "search the scriptures" to see whether these things are so. If true - accept God's truth. If error - kindly correct me.

Question #1: Does 1 Timothy 4:14 teach that elders can impart the gifts of the spirit?

-No, Timothy received his gift through the laying on of Paul's hands - 2 Tim. 1:6.

1. Timothy's gift was given to him as the result of prophecy - 4:14 (cf. 1 Tim. 1:18). ["I suppose a revelation was given that Timothy was to be set apart, and that he would be spiritually endowed for his work." - B.W. Johnson, People's NT Notes.]
2. It was given through the laying on of Paul's hands - 2 Tim. 1:6.
3. In the presence of an eldership - 4:14.
  a. "With" - META - "amid, among, with" (Thayer, 402-404).
  b. Meaning is that of accompaniment - Acts 13:2-3 (shows endorsement).
  c. Not - means or instrumentality (DIA) - cf. 4:14: "by (DIA) prophecy."
4. The means by which Timothy received his spiritual gift was Paul's hands (2 Tim. 1:6 - DIA). (Only apostles - cf. Acts 8:14-17; 19:6)
5. The occasion included (was accompanied by) the eldership commending/endorsing Timothy with their hands.

Question #2:  John 15:12 says "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you" and in Romans 12:18 we read "If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men." Explain these two verses with reference to there being Christians and non-Christians that we cannot stand to associate with, even to the point of not wanting to speak with them.

1. Jno. 15:12 - Christians are under commandment to love one another as Christ has loved us - Jno. 13:34.
  a. Sacrificially - cf. 15:13; 1 Jno. 4:10.
  b. Completely - cf. 15:10 (obeying God in all things); 1 Jno. 5:2.
  c. Such love is of/from God - 1 Jno. 4:7-11.
  d. By such love we manifest our discipleship - Jno. 13:34-35.
2. Rom. 12:18 - Christians are to possess & present a peaceable spirit toward all men - even our enemies (12:17-21).
  a. Naturally, we are to be peaceable toward fellow Christians! - 12:10-16
  b. We don't have fellowship with evil-doers, but we do them no harm - 12:19-21 (give place to God's righteous wrath against sin, return good for evil).
  c. Neither do we retreat to monasteries - Lk. 15:1-7.
  d. Use our opportunities to teach/influence with the truth - Gal. 6:10.
3. The Lord expects us to overcome hindrances which make us not want to "associate" or "speak" to fellow Christians.
  a. Granted, some will have more in common with one than another - cf. Acts 18:3.
  b. We all have a "common faith" (Tit. 1:4), common salvation (Jude 3) …early saints had "all things common" (Acts 4:32)! - 1 Cor. 1:10
  c. If something is hindering brotherly love -- overcome it by putting on the heart of Christ! - Col. 3:12-15; cf. Eph. 4:31-32.
4. Pursue peace & holiness -- with sinners & saints! - Heb. 12:14-15

Question #3:  Several characters in the Old Testament told lies. Examples: Abraham lying about Sarah not being his wife; Isaac about Rebekah; old prophet lying to young prophet (1 Kings 13:11-32); etc. Why did God permit or tolerate this?

1. First, it is important to understand that God does not sin nor does He endorse sin - these or any others - Num. 23:19; Rom. 3:9-12.  -By their own exercise of free-will these and all others sinned.
2. Second, God has been & continues to be longsuffering toward sinners (from Adam to the present).
  a. God could have slain Adam & Eve (Gen. 2:17). Instead--Gen. 3:16-24.
  b. Toward the nations - Acts 14:16-17; 17:30.
  c. Toward Israel - Psa. 78:37-38.
  d. WHY? - "He remembered that they were but flesh" - Psa. 78:39.
3. Third, God has provided redemption for all sinners - Rom. 3:25-26. -(Man cannot continue in sin and escape God's punishment of sin.)
4. Summary:
  a. God did not approve of Abraham's, Sarah's, etc. sin (cf. Murderous Moses, adulterous David, lying Peter).
  b. God used sinners to accomplish His holy purposes…always teaching them His will…always being longsuffering…God provided redemption through faith….

1. 2 Pet. 3:7-10 - The Lord will keep His word & destroy ungodly men.
2. Are you prepared to meet your God? (3:11-13)