‘WHEN GOD CONVICTS’

6 Weeks – 4/27/2015 to 6/5/2015

Overview: Nothing weighs heavier in a person’s life than the conviction of sin by the Lord Himself. King David was under such guilt for the sins of adultery and murder that he could hardly function in life.  In seven of the 150 Psalms in the Old Testament, David speaks of his conviction, his guilt, his remorse, and his confession of his sin.  These Psalms are some of the most evocative written by David.  Their power and emotion speak to the sin in our lives, in ways we don’t necessarily understand intellectually.

Ultimately, he recognizes that his sin was against the Heavenly Father.  So is your sin and mine!  It’s very personal. Let these messages not only speak to issues of guilt and remorse, but let them affirm the words of Psalm 130:4, “But with the Lord, there is forgiveness.”  The God who convicts is also the God who forgives!

WHEN GOD CONVICTS

Week 6 – 06/01/2015

The Last Word on Forgiveness

Psalm 143:1-2, 7-12

Overview: This week, we look at the last of seven penitential Psalms.  For the last six weeks we have looked at David’s conviction, guilt, and confession of the sins of adultery and murder.  It was possibly or even probably the most difficult time of his life.  There’s nothing enjoyable about being under the conviction of God.  There is nothing pleasant about guilt and remorse.  There is also no peace until we deal with the sin in our lives.

This Week’s Podcast:

 

Monday – Part One – We begin with a story about author James Patterson, who is referred to as the busiest man in publishing today.  He talks about a book, not that he wrote, but rather that he read that he says changed his life.  What you read about forgiveness in the word of God can change your life and mine.  Forgiveness is the biggest game changer in life!

 

Tuesday – Part Two – A defining moment in your life can happen when you throw yourself at the foot of the cross and say, “God, forgive me!”  Some reading this know what that means.  Still others have never experienced the sense of God’s forgiveness in their lives.  Don’t leave this world without that breakthrough happening in your life.

 

Wednesday – Part Three – The Apostle Paul quotes the Psalm we study this week in the New Testament letter we call Romans.  He quotes verse three that says “no one is declared righteous on their own”.  Rather, as Christians we have a righteousness that comes from God that comes through faith in Jesus Christ.  What a concept!  We don’t come to God as perfect people; we come as people who need forgiveness and grace.

 

Thursday – Part Four – In verse eight, David says that he “lifts up his soul” to the Lord.  We don’t use language like that today, but we lift up our souls to that which we love.  It’s a term of intimacy.   If you and I love things, we “lift up our soul” to things.   If we love money or fame, we “lift up our souls” to that.  What do you and I lift up our souls to?

 

Friday – Part Five – We conclude the entire series, “When God Convicts” today on CrossHope. You and I look at life from the context of 70-80 years.   God looks at your life and mine, from the context of eternity.  Our greatest need in life is not to be happy, but to be forgiven!  When you really believe that, nothing is the same!

WHEN GOD CONVICTS

Week 5 – 05/25/2015

The Land of Beginning Again

Psalm 130:1-7

Overview: Have you ever wished you could go back in time and relive a day, a week, or even longer because of something that happened in your life?  Most people have!  In the fifth message from the series, “When God Convicts”, we talk about that issue from Psalm 130.

This Week’s Podcast:

 

Monday – Part One – Rarely do I use poetry, but today I do, quoting a poem called “The Land of Beginning Again”.  It captures the essence of what we talk about all this week from the 6th of 7 Penitential Psalms.  If we were totally honest, we all have had the desire to go to that imaginary place called the “Land of Beginning Again.”  That place has a name: it’s called “forgiveness”.

 

Tuesday – Part Two – Have you ever had someone tell you that they would never forgive you for something you did or said?  Do you remember the pain of that moment?  It really is one of the most dramatic things one person says to another.  What if you served a God who said that to you?  Today we talk about that.

 

Wednesday – Part Three – Verse three of Psalm 130 says, “Lord, if you kept a record of our sins, who could stand”?  Meaning what?  If you kept “score”, Oh Lord, who could survive?  Some people are scorekeepers; some people are married to a scorekeeper.  A scorekeeper is someone who has total recall when it comes to remembering your sins; but they have amnesia when it comes to remembering theirs!

 

Thursday – Part four – Today we talk about not only taking sin seriously, but taking forgiveness seriously.  Forgiveness is serious business, particularly if it involves you or me.  You and I never appreciate that until someone withholds it from us!  Verse four says, “With the Lord, there is forgiveness”.  Sooner or later, that verse will take on special meaning in your life and mine.

 

Friday – Part Five – We requote a verse from last year’s series in Ecclesiastes:   “Remember your Creator in the days of your youth”.  Many people wish that they could go back to their youth so they could do exactly that.  Did you ever stop to think that today is the “youth” of the rest of your life?  Even if we have just a few years left on this earth, it’s good to know that!  Remember Him today!  Why?  With the Lord, there is forgiveness.

WHEN GOD CONVICTS

Week 4 – 05/18/2015

Guilt Symptoms

Psalm 102:3-11

Overview: Have you ever thought about guilt creating physical symptoms in your body?  According to King David, his guilt impacted him inside and out!  He refers to physical ailments that he attributes to the guilt he experiences for the sin of adultery and murder.  The symptoms are both emotional and physical.  That’s what we study all this week on CrossHope.

This Week’s Podcast:

 

Monday – Part One – We begin with a story about the brother in law of actor Gary Sinese.  Jack was Vietnam veteran who tells of the “guilt” placed on him by civilians at the airport when he returned from his year in Southeast Asia.  He was both fearful and guilty in his mind, even just serving as a medic in the war.

 

Tuesday – Part Two – When you hear the text read today on CrossHope, ask yourself if you have ever experienced what David did. David didn’t have the medical knowledge that even the average person has today.  See if you can identify his poetic language in terms of his symptomology. Guilt has more to do with how you feel than you know!

 

Wednesday – Part Three – David talks about his “days vanishing like smoke”.  I wonder if he felt like he was walking in a fog.  Have you ever been a personal crisis where you felt as if life was being lived in a fog?  Many people have.  David said his “heart was blighted”.  That’s an agricultural term, yet David used it to describe the withering away of his heart.  If not physically, he meant it emotionally and spiritually.

 

Thursday – Part four – We reference a movie made about the life and death of Christian singer/writer Rich Mullins.  A former priest by the name of Brennan Manning ministered to Rich in a powerful way.  Listen to the story of Brennan’s guilt and his need to focus on the cross, not his past.  All of us can related to his struggle.

 

Friday – Part Five – One year ago on CrossHope I shared the details of destruction that was visited upon Stuttgart, Germany during the 2nd world war.  That’s where my daughter, her husband, and three children have lived for the last two years.  All the debris was formed into a mountain outside the city.  At the top of the rubble is a 40-foot cross.  We talk about the symbolism of that for your life and mine.

WHEN GOD CONVICTS

Week 3 – 05/11/2015

Centerpiece of Forgiveness

Psalm 51:1-12

Overview: Of the seven Psalms that are labeled “penitential”, one is called the centerpiece of these writings.  It’s the most familiar, and the most quoted of the seven.  Perhaps you have read it when feeling guilt in your life.  Maybe you need to read it today! What it says has life changing power in your life and mine.  It really does!

This Week’s Podcast:

 

Monday – Part One – We begin with a story of a humorous thing that happened in a movie theater.  What happens in the story serves as the introduction of the passage we study all this week.  We open with the idea of not asking God for “justice”, rather asking Him for mercy, grace, and forgiveness.  That’s what David did after committing the sins of adultery and murder.

 

Tuesday – Part Two – Chapter 51 begins with an appeal for God’s mercy, God’s love, and God’s compassion.  That becomes the basis for David asking God to blot out his transgressions.  He doesn’t even mention his sin at the beginning, he simply appeals to God’s nature.  Come to think of it, that’s what you and I need to do when we sin against Him.

 

Wednesday – Part Three – In verse three, David says that “my sin is always before me”.  It means his guilt was at the forefront of everything in his life.  He really couldn’t think of anything else.  Have you ever been in that situation?  David then says that his sin was ultimately against the Lord.  That’s something that may be new to some, that sin is a wound against the Father.

 

Thursday – Part four – We talk about Facebook as an illustration of verse 11 where David says, “Lord, do not cast me from your presence.”  In 2015, we call it “defriending” someone.  But it’s much more serious than that.  He asks God not to “take His Holy Spirit” away him.  David wants to restore what he had with the Lord before his sin.  Maybe that’s your need and mine.

 

Friday – Part Five – We close with an illustration of Dr. Maurice Rawlings who was a heart specialist in Chattanooga for years.  He tells about resuscitating hundreds of people from clinical death during his career as a surgeon.   His observations as a Christian physician just may surprise you about heaven and hell!  You and I need to hear what he shares about the experiences of his patients, spiritually speaking.

WHEN GOD CONVICTS

Week 2 – 05/04/2015

God’s Capacity to Forgive

Psalm 32:1-5, 38:4

Overview: The book of Psalms has seven chapters that are referred to by scholars as the “penitential Psalms”.  This week we actually look at two of them:  Psalm 32 and Psalm 38.  David regales us with the joy of being forgiven by a forgiving God!  The word forgive means literally to “lift away”.  Only God has that power and capability to “lift away” our sin.

This Week’s Podcast:

 

Monday – Part One – We begin by talking about a town south of Jacksonville, Florida: St. Augustine.  It’s named after a saint in the Catholic Church.  When Augustine was on his death bed, he asked for an artist to paint the words to Psalm 32 on the wall of his bedroom.  Why?  He did this so he could be reminded of God’s capacity to forgive him!  You and I need to know that in 2015!

 

Tuesday – Part Two – Guilt can be emotionally and physically debilitating.  If you haven’t discovered that in life, perhaps you will before you leave this earth.  Guilt can haunt people.  But get this: God will never let you drown in your despair if you come to Him in repentance.

 

Wednesday – Part Three – We talk about people with a “deceitful spirit”.  It’s a person who is a person of the lie, rather than a person of the truth. It’s a person who lies with continual ongoing lies and accumulative lies.   The greatest denial in life is not the denial of death, but the denial of sin.

 

Thursday – Part Four – We talk about people who never apologize for anything they do, including apologizing to the Lord God Almighty.  We use an illustration from a modern day television show to illustrate the point. Healing never comes to a marriage, a family, an organization, or church until there is an acknowledgment of wrong doing. We give a new definition of confession in today’s program.

 

Friday – Part Five – I close with a story I hadn’t planned on using.  It wasn’t in my notes, not even on my mind.  It’s a story about of my family.  It will speak to you about the power of God’s word in your life and mine.  What does that have to do with God’s forgiveness?  Everything!

WHEN GOD CONVICTS

Week 1 – 04/27/2015

Fear of Punishment

Psalm 6:1-4, 8-9

Overview: The word “penitential” is not commonly used in our culture. Yet it is an expressive word about what happens when God convicts a man or woman of the sin in our lives.  Penitential has to do with grief, remorse, and regret for the sin that happens in every life.  There are seven Psalms that are called the “Penitential Psalms”, written by David after his sin of adultery and murder.  That’s what we study over the next six weeks on CrossHope.  (The second message covers the 2nd and 3rd of the seven Psalms.)

This Week’s Podcast:

 

Monday – Part One – We begin with the lyric of a song called, “Lost Highway”.  It’s an old song that speaks of the regret of a young man for the sin in his life.  He feels guilt and remorse for what he’s done and feels he’s walking in hopelessness on the lost highway of life. Maybe you can identify with the song; many people can!

 

Tuesday – Part Two – Conviction for sin isn’t a bad thing.  A lack of conviction is really a greater problem.  Conviction can be positive sign of the Lord working in our lives!  In the first of the seven Psalms that we study, David expresses a fear of God’s wrath and punishment for his sin.  Have you ever felt what you thought to be the punishment of God for sin?

 

Wednesday – Part Three – There is no deliverance or redemption in our lives until we are convicted of sin in our lives!  Most people don’t get that fact of life.  David asks God, “Don’t rebuke me, Lord in your wrath.” Why?  Because we know how we are towards other people when we are angry.  He then asks the Lord to save him because of His love that is unfailing.  The Lord is the only one that can be described as having an “unfailing love”.

 

Thursday – Part Four – I share a story that I set up by saying that I’m not sure I believe it!  I’ve never done that before with any story I’ve shared over 30 years on the radio.  When you hear the story you’ll understand why.  Yet it still conveys a powerful truth that you and I need to believe:  that anything good in my life is due to the grace of God!

 

Friday – Part Five – We close with an emotional story about a man who wept every Sunday for years during church services.  His daughter finally asks him why.  His answer just may speak to you about an issue that has haunted you over your lifetime.

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