Keep prayed and confessed up to date — otherwise known as "a good conscience."
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again, radio friends. How in the world are you? You doing alright today? Well, I trust so, bless your heart. I’m glad to be back with you, feeling great, happy in the Lord. I want to spend a day or so, just recapping some of the precious truths that we have found, you and I, in our consideration of 1 Timothy during these past some weeks.
My father used to say, “Just hit the high spots, boy.” [chuckle] Well, maybe that’s what we’ll do, we’ll hit the high spots. If you look at that first Chapter, what stands out in my view of it, immediately, is verse five. First Timothy 1:5, “Now, the end of the commandment,” says Paul, “Is love.” Calvary love, John 3:16 love, ‘agape’ is the Greek word ‘love.’ “Is love out of a pure heart, and a good conscience, and faith unfeigned, from which some, having swerved aside, has turned unto vain jangling.” Over in verse 19, he has the same theme, “Hold onto faith and a good conscience, which some, having put away concerning faith, have made shipwreck.”
Now, here’s a principle, by which you and I need to steer our lives: If we miss keeping on course here, the first thing that happens, is that we get into vain jangling, that is to say, arguments that don’t really matter. And then, ultimately, he said, “Which some, having put away concerning faith, have made shipwreck.” That means you go on the rocks, your life is wrecked. Pretty serious stuff, wouldn’t you say?
Well, then, let’s take a look at it for a moment. The end of the commandment, that word ‘end,’ when we say, “This is the end,” we mean, “This is the last.” There’s a little different meaning here in this word ‘end,’ it’s the Greek word ‘telos,’ which means ‘purpose.’ The real purpose of God’s message to you, is that your life should be filled with love.
Now, you see, the unsaved heart is filled with hate. I’m looking now at Titus chapter three, “We ourselves also… ” This is Titus 3:3, “We ourselves also, were at one time foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving different desires and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hate-filled, and hating one another. But after the kindness and love of God, our Savior, toward man, appeared not by works of righteousness, which we have done, but according to His mercy, He saved us.”
The unsaved heart is filled with hatred. The saved heart, God wants to fill with His own John 3:16 kind of love. He said, “That’s God’s overriding purpose. That’s the purpose, the end of the commandment, what He really wants to accomplish.” Interestingly enough, when the Spirit of God completely fills a person, one of the first reactions the individual has, is an awareness of Divine love filling all of his or her heart.
Charles G Finney described his meeting with God this way. He said it was like, “Wave upon wave of liquid love, filling my soul.” Others have had the same impression. God wants to fill your life with His love. Romans 5:5 substantiates that, doesn’t it? “The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts, by the Holy Ghost, Who is given unto us. The Holy Spirit of God mediates, implements, transmits, and fills your life with God’s holy love.” What God wants is your life to be filled with His love.
Now, you don’t do this by trying. I was talking with someone after a service, just the other day, and I said, “Well, are you walking with the Lord?” And the answer, somewhat querulously, certainly not happily, was, “Well, I’m trying.” Well, you don’t accomplish these things by trying.
This is a matter of submitting to the ministry of a wonderful Person. The Holy Spirit of God wants to fill your life with Himself and as He does, He brings the love of God. “The fruit of the Spirit is love,” Paul says in Galatians 5. Nail that concept down in your heart. This is not something you do, it’s not something you try to achieve. It’s not a feeling, certainly, that you try to have. Have you ever tried to feel a certain way? [laughter] It just doesn’t work, does it? You’re crying, and someone pats you on the shoulder, and says, “Cheer up.” Do you feel cheerful after that? No, you don’t.
Your feelings don’t change, because somebody says something. Feelings, your emotions, and your feelings are by-products of relationships, aren’t they? And so this matter of a life filled with love is a by-product, it’s a result of yielding to the blessed Holy Spirit of God, and letting Him fill every room in your heart house. Paul says in Ephesians 5:18, “Be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess, but be filled with the Spirit.”
Dr Pettingill used to like to point out that that word ‘be filled’ is in the linear sense, which he has paraphrased as saying, “Be ye being filled, keep on being filled, keep on being filled with the Holy Spirit. Let every room in your heart house be filled with the Presence of the Holy Spirit of God continually.” When that happens, and as it continues to happen, beloved, I can assure you that you’re gonna have an experience of God’s love.
Now, he says, “The end, the purpose, the real ultimate purpose of God’s message to us, is that our lives will be filled with His love.” Now, what contributes to that? It says ‘love out of,’ that is ‘developing as a result of,’ I guess you might say. It’s perfectly clear here in your Greek New Testament, the little word ‘ek,’ which means ‘out of, from.’ “Developing out of,” in other words, you might say, “A pure heart, a good conscience, and faith unfeigned.” These are the positives, which contribute to an awareness of God’s love in your life. These are the positives, the absolutes, you might say, that contribute to an awareness of God’s love in your life. Their absence short circuits the flow of God’s love.
And so a pure heart, a good conscience, and faith unfeigned. That word ‘unfeigned’ means ‘not hypocritical,’ literally. Real faith that isn’t hypocritical. These are the things that will give you an awareness of God’s love. You wanna think about that for a minute with me? Are you still there? Alright.
He says, “Love, an awareness of God’s holy love in your life comes from a pure heart.” Now, you would think everybody would understand that. “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me,” said the Psalmist. “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper, but who so confesseth them, for sake of it, shall have mercy.” A pure heart. “Who shall ascend into the holy place? He that hath clean hands and a pure heart, who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing from the Lord.”
Pure heart, how do you get that? You get it by leveling with God. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us,” says John the Apostle. “Cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” You bring yourself to God as you are, and you confess your sin to Him, and you turn your back upon that sin. And you take your stand with your living Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. You say, “I can’t quit this or that. I can’t help this or that.” Of course, that’s true humanly, but faith, you see, comes to the Lord Jesus, and confesses your need, and says, “By faith, Lord Jesus Christ, I take my stand with you, against this thing in my life. And I believe you, for you’re working in my life.” Pure heart. Would you dare to do that today?
Every one of us has little compartments in his or her life that need cleaning out, you know that. Would you dare to bring those things to God today and verbalize them? I mean, talk out loud to God. I don’t mean loudly, necessarily, although some people pray better when they’re shouting, it does seem, but to just verbalize it. Talk out loud to God. The effort to put into words your thoughts helps you to think clearly and sincerely about the matter. Verbalize it to God. Say it to Him, “Lord, this is what’s the matter with me.” And then, as you confess your sins, trust the Lord Jesus Christ to cleanse, and to forgive you. It says, “To forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Forgiveness comes first, that involves the relationship. Cleansing follows, that involves your condition. God does it for you by His matchless grace, when you own up, when you confess…
The word ‘confess’ in your Greek New Testament means ‘say the same thing, agree with God.’ The Greek word ‘homologeo’ means ‘to say the same thing, to agree.’ All you have to do is agree with God. He knows the score about you already. Tell Him what it is with you and trust then, your blessed Lord, to forgive you-that takes care of the relationship with you and God, and then to cleanse you, that takes care of the condition of your defiled heart, a pure heart.
And I can guarantee you that, when you’ve been to Calvary, and your eyes are wet, and your knees have been bent, and your heart has been submissive to God, and He has indeed forgiven you, and cleansed you for those things that stood between you and your Lord, I can guarantee you something, beloved, you’re gonna love God, and love people more than you ever did before. “Love out of a pure heart,” says Paul.
Then he says, “A good conscience.” You and I do slip, we do make mistakes, we do error, and our conscience immediately reminds us about it, you know that. What happens then? “Flee to the mercy seat. Let us come boldly to the mercy seat, the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” The minute that you’re aware of being out of line with the will of God, hurry up, get to your Lord, ask Him to forgive, and cleanse, and go on your way forgiven, and restored. A good conscience means ‘keep short accounts with God.’ Don’t wait until the end of the day, to bring a laundry list to God and say, “Lord, here’s all the different things that I did.” The minute you’re aware of being out of line, that minute, whisper a prayer, say, “Lord forgive me and cleanse me.” Keep prayed and confessed up to date, a good conscience.
Then it says, “Faith unfeigned,” and the word that is translated ‘unfeigned,’ actually means ‘un-hypocritical, not hypocritical.’ It’s easy to say, “I trust the Lord.” It’s something else to risk a situation on Him. Real faith risks a given situation on God. Faith is the quality of risking the outcome of any situation on God. And faith unfeigned is going to fill your heart with love for Him, because the more you trust Him, the more you’ll find Him faithful, and true. The more you realize that He never fails you, well, the more you’re going to love Him. “We love Him, because He first loved us,” says John. “Here in His love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” As you get acquainted with this Lord, Who first loved you, and Who is always looking out for your welfare, and Who never breaks a promise, and Who is always faithful, the Bible says, “Great is Thy faithfulness.”
As you learn to know this Lord, in that way, you’re gonna love Him more and more. God’s purpose in bringing you His message, is that your life might be filled with His love. How do you get it? Go to Calvary, get your heart pure, walk in the light, keep your conscience clean, risk the situation on God, and let Him come through for you.
Dear Father, today, may we be walking in Thy love, and in Thy light, and in Thy will, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, I pray. Amen.
Till meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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