We live a hurried existence. But beloved, the best thing you can do is spend some time with your blessed Lord, worshiping Him and letting Him speak to you.
Alright thank you very much, and hello again dear radio friends. How in the world are you? Why, I’m fine. Thank you. I’ve just been praying that God would put His love and power and blessing and truth and inspiration and help, and all that you need, my beloved friend, into these words that are spoken just now from His Holy Word.
It’s wonderful that God can take a human voice, coming from somewhere, though we’re separated, you and I, by thousands of miles in some cases, and He can use those words that are spoken, to bring help and encouragement or guidance or salvation, or whatever you need, in those spoken words-received as you do, with a willing heart. It’s great, isn’t it? I rejoice to be a servant of the Most High God. What a privilege it is to be with you, day by day, and to share from the Word of God. You ever think of me, you pray that God will keep His hand on me, and that when I open my mouth, there may be blessing always. Would you? I appreciate it.
We’re in Mark chapter 1 and it says that, after our Lord Jesus had called to Peter and Andrew and James and John, and they had followed Him it says, “They went into Capernaum and straightway on the Sabbath day He entered into the synagogue and taught, and they were astonished at His doctrine for He taught them, as one that had authority, and not as the scribes”. Talk about that in a minute-there’s a good distinction there that you and I need to learn. “And there was in their synagogue, a man with an unclean spirit, and he cried out saying, ‘Let us alone! What have we to do with Thee Thou Jesus of Nazareth? Art Thou come to destroy us? I know Thee who Thou art, the Holy One of God!”
But Jesus rebuked him saying, “Hold thy peace and come out of him”, and when the unclean spirit had torn him and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him and they were all amazed insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, “What thing is this? What new doctrine is this, for with authority commandeth He even the unclean spirits and they do obey Him”. And immediately his fame spread abroad throughout all the region, round about Galilee.
Alright, let’s look at this passage and see what it says to us, will you? These four disciples are now with the Lord Jesus, and others probably with them, entered into Capernaum, and when the Sabbath day arrived(, I don’t know what day of the week it was that they got there,) but it says, “Straightway on the Sabbath day”. Mark of course uses this word straightway all the time-it means immediately, right now, let’s get going, no delay. So, without delay it says, “On the Sabbath day, He entered into the synagogue and taught”.
Now, you have to understand that in those days, if you went to the synagogue and you desired to say something relating to the Scriptures, you could do that, as a visitor or as a member the congregation. And so there He was. They were according Him the usual courtesy, you may say, of a visitor, who came into the synagogue.
The surprise was however, that He didn’t simply parrot the phrases of the Scripture and then quote some of the of the patriarchal or rabbinical father’s and saying, you know Rabbi so-and-so says this is what this means. No, His teaching, very likely, was similar to what we find in Sermon on the Mount for He said, “You heard that is been said by them of old time this”, and this and this, “but I say unto you”. He had authority, He taught with authority the Word of God.
There are three things that occur to me here, if you follow the Lord Jesus, what’s involved? Worship, the Word of God, and the warfare of God. Worship of God, the Word of God, and the warfare of God. That’s what this passage says to me.
Small thought here. How often are you found in God’s house really worshiping? I know many of my dear friends who fellowship with me, by way of radio, are regular church attenders, you wouldn’t miss going to church, and that’s great. But what is church for? “God is a Spirit and they that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in Truth-the Father seeketh such to worship Him”.
God is looking for people who really worship Him, not just go through forms. Isaiah chapter 1 says, “God gets tired of ritual and formal prayers”. He said, “When you make many prayers”, He said, “ I’m weary to bear them”. He gets tired of them.
Had you thought about that? We say our prayers, and often times if somebody calls on you in a meeting where you get up and get your mind in creeper gear, and do the best you can to make a good speech to God, made with your eyes shut, and it represents quite an effort, I know. You do your best to pray, but are you really at that moment, really worshiping God? Well, if the truth were told, no, you’re trying to make a pretty good public performance because somebody called on you.( laughs) I know, I’ve been there!
If you follow the Lord Jesus, you’re going to have to learn to worship Him, and that takes time. You don’t just rush in and rush out and say, “Lord, these are my requests and please bless me and keep me out of trouble today, Amen”, and away you go. Any kind of prayer is good if it’s sincere and in the Spirit, but to worship God takes time, to go into His sanctuary and be quiet, “Be still”, He said, “and know that I am God”.
I guess I’ve told the story of the experience I had many years ago when my sister Mildred took me to see a great lady who was known as quite a prayer warrior. She lived in one of the suburbs of Los Angeles, I forget where it was anymore, one of those towns that nestles around Los Angeles, there on the hills, but anyhow we made our way there and I said to the lady, “I heard you are quite a person of prayer and I thought I’d like to have some prayer with you”. And she said “Young man that’s fine”. This was a half a century ago, so she could call me young man.
We sat there and finally I said “Well let’s pray”. Well, she said, “You want to lead in prayer?”, I said, “Alright”. So I lead out in prayer, prayed the best I knew how, earnestly, and covered all the bases I could think of in praying, and said Amen!
And then it was to silence. Quiet- you could hear the clock ticking in the next room, and I thought well, the dear old gal has fallen asleep. Maybe I’ll take a look and see, so I opened one eye. No, she wasn’t asleep, she was sitting quite erect in her chair with her arms primly folded on her lap, and I knew she wasn’t asleep, but there she was bowed, very quietly. And it seemed like so long a time went by and finally she said, “Our Father”, and I knew, dear friends, I knew that in that moment I was in the Presence of the Lord.
She had waited until real worship was established. Now, do you know about that? If you’re going to follow the Lord Jesus, you need to learn to worship God, to bow, to be still before Him, to acknowledge that He’s God and you’re the creature, He’s the Potter and you’re the clay. He is Sovereign, you’re His servant. Wait before Him, wait before Him.
Some writer has said that the Christian soldier needs to wait at headquarters until he gets his marching orders, then he can go forth. To be quiet before God. We live such a hurried life, I know I do. Hurry and get up early and get dressed, get going on the day. Take care of one million things that are crying out to be taken care of. finish out the day tired, hungry for your evening dinner. Afterward, do some of the things that you hadn’t finished up before, and finally drop into bed exhausted and another day went by.
We live a hurried existence, I know that, so do you, but beloved, the best thing you can do is to spend some time with your blessed Lord worshiping Him and letting Him speak to you, “The secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him and He will show them His covenant”, the psalmist said. The psalmist was complaining about other people doing wrong things, and he said, “Until”, he said, “I was almost like a beast, I was complaining before you”, but he said, “Until I went into the sanctuary, then I understood”.
Get along with your God even today. There is no person listening to me, who cannot find some time or place to be alone with God. I have prayed in some strange places, I assure you, attics coal cellars, clothes closets, oh a clothes closet is a great place to pray! I remember one home where I was being entertained, the clothes closet was big enough to hold everything that was in my dining room at home. It was a huge area, and I would go in there and kneel down among the mink coats and pray. Oh yes, I’ve prayed in rickshaws and pedicabs and taxicabs and all sorts of places. You can get alone with God any time you want to, if you want to. Learn to worship, learn to worship, “Be still and know that I’m God, I will be exalted”, He says.
Well then there’s the Word, and we won’t finish our comment on that before time runs out in this broadcast, but we’ll get at it again. He said, “He taught them as one that had authority, not as the scribes”, Mark isn’t above a jibe now and again, you know. Mark tells about the lady who had been ill and says that she had that not been helped by any of the doctors she went to, was nothing better, but rather made worse. You know, he just gets out that needle and sticks it into the epidermis of the poor, protesting victim, and Luke of course, uses professional courtesy and he said, concerning that same sick lady, “She could not be helped by any of the physicians”, you know there’s a different way to say it, but Mark here, he’s got a little jibe, a little, a little needle that he uses, Jesus taught as one with authority and not as one of the scribes.
What did the scribes do? They know the Scriptures, but they gave them out in terms of, well, this is what Rabbi so-and-so says, and this what tradition says and so on, and there wasn’t any real authority of the Word of God in what they said. There’s the difference. Now, when you deal in the Word of God, number on, hide it in your heart so that it’s yours, number two, give it out as God’s Word, not just some parroting of a religious phrase. Real authority comes from hiding the Word in your heart, having the Holy Spirit in control of your life, and giving the Word, not your opinion. We’ll get at that once again the next time that we get together.
Dear Father today, we pray that we may truly worship Thee serve Thee with all our hearts, I ask in the name of the Lord Jesus, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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