But I do know that there’s a harvest of blessing when I share for Jesus’ sake.
Alright thank you very much, and hello again radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing Alright today? Yes, of course I wait for you to answer. I know some of you do. Somebody said to me the other day when I met them in a meeting said, “When you say how the world are you and then you wait, I say, ‘Don’t ask’”. Well, I know there are some days like that. Some days are better than others and some are worse than others and some said you say to yourself, “I should have stayed in bed”. I know, but I also know that you can get through any day with Jesus, hallelujah. Oh, so great to walk with Him. That’s why I go off the air, day after day, by reminding all of us to walk with the King. Get in agreement with your blessed Lord. Remember the Bible says, “Can two walk together except they be agreed”. Get in agreement with your blessed Lord and take every step through any given day or night with Him. Pray your way through the day. Commit yourself to your Lord as you make the decisions, as you go through the various actions that need to be yours throughout any time of the day or night, you can look up and trust your Lord and say, “Jesus see me through this”. Oh, that’s great. I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t trust my Lord. How about you?
Well this detour I’m going through the high spots in Philippians has gotten to be longer than I intended it to be, but I’ve enjoyed it. I hope you have too. We’ve come to Philippians 4:19. He said in commending the folk at Philippi he said, “You are the only people who ever sent me any offerings or help. No church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving but you only. For even in Thessalonica you sent once and again”. Two, two different offerings they sent to him. Now, he said, “It isn’t because I desire a gift”. He said, “I can get through anything that the Lord asks me to because He strengthens me”. We, we went through that in verse 13, “I can do all things through Christ, anything God asks me to do I can do, because He strengthens me, enables me”, but he says, “I desire fruit that may abound to your account. I have all and abound”
What is this matter of, “He desires fruit that may abound to their account”? Now, is this some kind of double talk? In our day some well-known preachers talk about seed gifts, you give to my ministry and God will bless you. Well now, I, I think I have to take a stand against the idea that if you give some money to God’s work, you’re going to get rich on it. I don’t see that happening. But I also need to remind us that that is a biblical principle. That when you and I give in response to the promptings of the indwelling Holy Spirit of God, with motives that are unmixed; we’re not giving it now so that our name will appear on the, the donor list that’s published, and all that you know, we’re giving it with unmixed motives for God’s glory because we love Jesus. When you and I give to a ministry, whether it’s your Christian radio station or your local church or your missionary society or some educational institution or whatever it may be, when you give this does have an effect upon your own life. Now, the Bible says so, and the point is not to be argued. It is true.
Not that you give something and then immediately everything is going to be coming up roses and you’re going to get rich and have a Rolls-Royce. I think that is, that’s entirely unbiblical, and not within the purview of what God is teaching us. But He is teaching me that when I give to His work, He’s going to bless, “There will be a harvest in my own life”. Paul says, “I desire fruit that may abound to your account”. I want you to be blessed.
Now, I’ve learned this here and there throughout the years, I’ve told you about my good friend, Ben Weiss, now with the Lord and what a precious friend he was. I’ve had a few mentors in my life. He was one of them that helped to steer me in different ways with his wise counsel. But I asked him one time, “How do how finance your work”? He was head of, of the a faith work the was begun out their on the West Coast. Christian teachers banded together in fellowship. And I says, “How do you finance your work? Don’t you have lots of needs”? “Oh yes”, he said, “we do”. Well, I said, “What happens”? Well he said, “Whenever we get up against it, I go home and pray and then I make out a check to somebody else’s work and God always blesses us”, he chuckled. Now that’s an interesting concept isn’t it? I’m not telling you to do that, I’m simply saying that it worked for him. God does something in my life when I give to His work.
Christian radio stations have what they call telethon, radio-thons, or whatever they call them, and they encourage people to donate to the work of the radio. Now why? Well for two reasons: when they need it, obviously, and number two there’s blessing that comes to the givers. Now, I won’t beat on that point unnecessarily, but I think you and I better face the fact that some of us, some of may be spiritually lean because we’re spiritually stingy. Some of the most critical letters I have received over more than half a century of ministering the Word of God. I was ordained in ’31. Can you figure that? Of course, I was just a child. No, I guess I was, I guess I was a 19, something like that. Whatever. Some of the most critical letters I have received in more than a half-century of ministering the word of God have been from people who never give a dime. It does seem to me, now this is just a Cookism, you know, this is, this is, this is Bob Cook’s revised version if you want it. If you want to look at it that way, but it does seem to me that there is a relationship between spiritual coldness and the lack of God-guided stewardship, and some of the warmest and most encouraging relationships that I’ve experienced as a pastor and evangelist and youth leader and college president, some of the warmest and most blessed relationships have come because of people who although they didn’t have much, dared to share it with God’s work. Now I’ve said all that just to remind you ,you and I need to take stock of whether or not we’re planting any kind of seed so we can get a harvest of blessed fruit, the kind the Paul talks about in Philippians 4. Have you written to your Christian radio station to encourage? Have you written, now this is an unheard of thought, have you written your dear pastor lately an encouraging note and dropped in a little something to help with the expenses? Have you written to your missionary society lately? Have you helped anybody for Jesus’ sake? Well, if you have, I know there’s a harvest coming your way. No, I don’t suppose you’ll get rich. I haven’t seen too many people who got rich because of what they gave. That doesn’t seem to work that way. Thank God it doesn’t, it would spoil us, wouldn’t it? But I do know that there’s a harvest of blessing when I share for Jesus’ sake.
Well, he said, “I, I’m just so happy. I’ve got everything. Epaphroditus brought the things that were sent from you He said, It’s like a lot of perfume. “An odor of a sweet smell, a sacrifice, acceptable, wellpleasing to God”. What does God like? Well, this is one, isn’t it? He says, the things you sent evidently had to do with something to eat, as well as, as may be some money. He said, “The things that were sent from you”. So whatever they sent, he said, God, it is well pleasing to God, acceptable, boy, I enjoy it, but he says it’s well pleasing to God. God likes me to give, to help His people. He likes that. It’s well pleasing to Him, it says.
Now that same phrases occurs in Hebrews 13 he says, but, well let me read to, let me read the fifteenth verse, “By Him”, that is by the Lord Jesus, “let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name, but to do good and to communicate, forget not, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased”. Now, the sacrifice of praise, the sacrifice of good works, and the sacrifice of Christian stewardship or giving. This says God likes that. Now, that’s a simple formula, isn’t it? Praise. How long has it been since you really took some time just of praise the Lord? I must confess that a lot of my praying has to do with asking God to help me in different areas. I’m such a needy person. One of the big surprises that has come to me as the years of past, I thought I’d get over needing some help in different areas of my life, but the older I get the more I need Jesus. I asked my mother-in-love, Hilda Nilsen one day, I said, “Well Bestemor”, you’re going on into the 90s now, she was in her 80’s then, I said, “Bestemor, you’re getting on into the 80s and you will be 90 one of these days”, I said, “how you feel about Jesus now”? She thought a minute and then she looked at me. She said, “Well, the older I get, the more I need a great Savior”. Beautiful way to put it and that’s so true. I have to say amen to that myself.
Sacrifice of praise. How long has it been since you just took a little time to thank the Lord for all that He is and all that He means and all that He does in your life? God likes that. “Whoso offereth praise, glorifieth Me”, says the Bible. Then it’s the sacrifice of good works. “We are, we are born again through faith in the Lord Jesus unto”, this is a quote from Ephesians 2:10 “unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk”, means live every day, “in them”. So to do something good because you love Jesus and love people, that, God likes that it. Says, “With such sacrifice He is well pleased”, and then he says, “To communicate”, that’s our idea of giving, stewardship, Christian stewardship. God likes that. You want to please God? Praise Him. Do His will. Do good things for Him and for people, and share from your life that which He has given you as God’s well pleased with that. You’ll have a harvest of fruit that abounds to your account.
Dear Father today, may we do the things that please Thee, to praise, to do good, and to share for the glory of our blessed Lord, I ask in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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