The Master’s Class, Summit Church
ARE YOU QUALIFIED TO JUDGE? (John 7:45-8:11)

ARE YOU QUALIFIED TO JUDGE? (John 7:45-8:11)

May 19, 2019

Today we are going to talk about a familiar story from the New Testament. It is about a woman who was caught in the act of adultery, but the woman is not the focus of this story. It is instead the statement that Jesus makes to the scribes and the pharisees who had brought her to Jesus. Jesus tells them, “He who is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.”

The real question that Jesus is asking is, “are you qualified to judge this woman?” We are required to make judgments almost every day of our lives, but rarely do we judge whether a person should die for their sin. Never are we allowed to determine the eternal destiny of a person, and I am glad that is true because we are simply not qualified to be that judge. I am glad that Jesus is the only One qualified to judge my eternal destiny. To determine if I will spend eternity in heaven or hell. Amen?

Click on the link below hear a message, not about the perils of judging others, but a message about the wisdom and compassion of Jesus Christ. Wisdom to see through the schemes and agendas that we have as humans, and the compassion to forgive the sins of a woman whose heart chose Jesus as her Lord and Savior.

Amen.

HOW CAN YOU TELL IF YOU ARE BORN AGAIN (John 3:1-7)

HOW CAN YOU TELL IF YOU ARE BORN AGAIN (John 3:1-7)

September 30, 2018

What does a born-again child of God look like? Can you tell someone is a Christian by the way they look, or by the way they dress? Are there certain things a born-again child of God should not wear?

How does a born-again child of God behave? Can you tell someone is a Christian by the way they behave, or by the things they do, or say? Are there certain things that a born-again child of God should not do or say?

Now, let me ask the real question that I am leading us to. Is there a way that you can look at yourself and know whether or not that you are a born-again child of God? Jesus tells us there is.

Matt 7:20-21
20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
KJV

Jesus is telling us in this set of verses that you will know a Christian, a true born again believer, whether it is yourself, or someone else, by the fruit that they bear. Not by the things that they wear, or how they look, and not by the things they say or do, but by the fruits that they bear. What are those fruits?

Gal 5:22-25
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
KJV

Paul is telling us that these are the things that we should be able to see, feel, and experience when we are in the presence of a born-again child of God. There ought to be a noticeable difference in you as a believer. Not a weird difference, but a good difference in the way you treat yourself, your family, your friends, and those whom you come in contact with. We are sojourners in this world. This is not our home. Heaven is our home. We are aliens on this earth, because we are in this world, but we are not of this world.

We are twice born, redeemed, sanctified, Holy Spirit inhabited, joint heirs with the Son of God. Our outlook on this life, and our purpose in this world, is totally different from that of a lost person. There ought to be a noticeable difference about us. If we are truly born-again, then there ought to be a difference in us.

When you are saved, it brings a certainty to it. You ought to be able to say, "I know, that I know, I have been saved." If you have trusted Christ, if you have come down and trusted on the Word of God, if you have put your faith in Christ, and you know where God has put your sins, and somebody says, "Are you saved?" Then you can say, with that same certainty, "Yes, hallelujah, praise God, I know, that I know, that I am saved. God's Spirit agrees with my spirit that I'm a child of God."

Click on the link below to hear a message on the traits of a born-again believer, and on the things that will be true of you, if you are truly saved. God’s wants you to be certain that you are saved, listen and learn how you can tell if you are truly born again.

Amen.

UNMASKING THE FALSE (2 Peter 2:1)

UNMASKING THE FALSE (2 Peter 2:1)

November 27, 2016

We are surrounded by different kinds of religion. There are Baptists and Buddhists, Islamists and Methodists, Catholicism and Confucianism, Evolutionism and Gnosticism. There are as many religions as there are colors in crayon box. If you don’t like the way one religion makes you feel, pick another, or another. We are encouraged to believe that we all worship the same God, and there are just different ways of coming to Him. Unfortunately, we are being encouraged to believe a lie. When you look at all of the religions of the world, and you analyze the differences between them, when you boil it down to the basics, there are but two kinds of religion, the true and the false. That’s it, the true and the false. That which is authentic from God, and that which in inauthentic and has the curse of God upon it. If it is false it is dangerous and the world is full of dangerous doctrines.

I am going to say something that does not fit in our politically correct society. It is likely to cause college students across the nation to run to their safe zones, to grab a cup of hot cocoa and a binky, and curl up on the coach in their jammies, afraid to face an idea that does not meet their narrative. They may even need counseling after they hear this.

There is but one God, and there is but one way to Him, and that is through His Son Jesus Christ. It is not a religion that will give you eternal life in heaven, it is a relationship with Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior that will give it to you. It is a relationship, not a religion.

Yet, you can hear false doctrines from false teachers on every corner, on every website, and in the pulpits of churches, temples, mosques, and synagogues everywhere. Peter knew that this was true in his day, and the Holy Spirit knew it would be true in our day. There are false teachers among us today, in our own churches, and so we are going to spend the next several weeks studying about that which is authentic and that which is false. If you are going to be effective in your witness you must be able to recognize that which is authentic from that which is false.

Now, I think everyone would agree that it is wrong to tell a lie. You would agree with me on that, right? It is wrong to tell a lie. It is even worse to teach a lie, but it is monstrous to teach a lie about God. There is no greater crime in the eyes of God than to be a false prophet, or a false teacher, who preaches lies about God. God takes this crime very seriously. In the days of the Old Testament prophets, God had this to say about false prophets.

Deut 18:20
20 But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.
KJV

Now if God acted with a bolt of lightning every time a false prophet spoke a lie about Him, that would certainly thin out the ranks of false prophets. Unfortunately, God does not always act on our time frame. However, make no mistake, God hates lies taught about Himself, and He will punish the false prophet. The Bible says, even that prophet shall die.

2 Peter 2:12
12 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption;
KJV

Jesus told the Pharisees that God has reserved a special place for them in Hell because they had led the people away from God. So, it is important that we know and understand that which is authentic and that which is false. We need to be able to unmask the false prophets and teachers so we are not deceived.

Listen to this podcast so that you can know how to unmask the false teachers who are among us.

DEALING WITH FALSE TEACHERS (Romans 16:17-18)

DEALING WITH FALSE TEACHERS (Romans 16:17-18)

November 30, 2015
How do you deal with those who deliberately, not accidentally, teach a doctrine that is different from what is found in the Bible?

When a Jehovah’s Witness comes to your door, what do you do?  Do you engage in a debate with them, or do you shut the door?

How do you identify what is true and what is false in the teachings of people who profess to be Bible believing Christians?  They may even be in the leadership of the church as the pastor, or a deacon, or a Bible teacher.  How do you know when they begin to teach something that is false?

Many of these people will use the same words that we use, but they use a different dictionary to define them.  They say they believe in Jesus as the Christ, but they mean a Christ who was not the Son of God.  They say they believe in the resurrection, but they mean a spiritual resurrection, not the physical, bodily resurrection that the Bible declares occurred.  

The subtlety of these teachings is that they use a paraphrased truth from the Bible and then mix it with a lie, for the very best lies are based on a fragment of truth.  Just enough truth to seduce you, but filled with the lies of a false religion.  

Our lesson today is on how to deal with false teachers in the church and on your doorstep.  Today, as Christians we have two weapons to combat Satan and his disciples which are sufficient for our victory in spiritual warfare: the Spirit of God and the Word of God.  Filled with the Spirit, we can unsheath the Word of God to answer every devilish challenge that Satan and his demons can make.  All the craft and subtlety that Satan can muster is useless if the believer can began every statement with the words “Thus saith the Lord”.  

If there comes among you a teacher who knowingly and willfully does not teach the truth about Jesus Christ as He is defined in the Bible, then Paul says that we are to mark them, to shun them, and to avoid them.  We are to correct them under the leading of the Holy Spirit, but if that fails, then they are to be removed from the body of believers just as you would a ravening wolf that was prowling among you.
THE RESPONSIBILITY OF LIBERTY (Romans 14:13-14)

THE RESPONSIBILITY OF LIBERTY (Romans 14:13-14)

October 4, 2015
THE RESPONSIBILITY OF LIBERTY

We live in a country where our liberty to pursue our lives as we choose is a cherished right.  It is such a cherished right that many of our men and women have fought and died so that we could keep that right.  Yet, that same liberty requires that we regulate our own behavior in a manner that does not harm others.  Self-government requires self-regulation.

For example, I have the liberty to purchase the car of my choice.  I could buy a convertible Honey Bee yellow 1970 Hemi Plymouth Cuda that can go from 0-60 in less than 5.8 seconds or top out at a speed of 160 mph, but if I want to drive that vehicle on the road with others there are limits to what I can do with that liberty of owning such a powerful vehicle.  Our traffic laws have been put in place to help me from doing something that might harm someone else, but even acting within these laws my behavior can potentially harm others.  

We choose to limit our liberty because we value the lives of others and we protect their rights to choose how they want to live their lives.  

We also have to be careful how others see us and what we do.  I used to ride motorcycles when I was 15 to about 17.  I really enjoyed it, in fact, I still have a motorcycle designation on my driver’s license just in case I ever get a wild feeling and decide to ride again.  So why haven’t I ridden a motorcycle since I was young?

It is because I got married, and had then I had two boys who watched everything that I did.  Getting married meant that I had someone else depending on me to go to work every day to provide a place for us to live.  Having sons meant setting an example of the kinds of behavior that would keep us, and them, safe.  It is not that riding a motorcycle is bad or evil, in fact, it is a lot of fun, nor, am I concerned with my own ability to ride safely.  What I am concerned about is riding on a small, two wheel, fully exposed vehicle, in amongst a bunch of 2,000 lb. heavy metal vehicles driven by people who do not even see a motorcycle rider coming down the road, and hit them on a regular basis.  

So I have the full liberty to do something that is not evil, yet I choose not to do that activity because of what the impact may be on those around me.  I choose not to exercise my liberty because it may impact my ability to be a good provider, and it might set an example that would cause someone else around me to stumble, or to get hurt, just because they saw me doing something.  

We choose to do, or not do, certain things because we love Christ and we want to be more like Him.  We also choose to do, or not to do, certain things because we are to love our neighbors as we do ourselves and we do not want to be a stumbling block to them. 

This is what our lesson is about today, being, or not being, a stumbling block to others. 
WHAT IS IMPORTANT TO YOU? (Romans 14:7-12)

WHAT IS IMPORTANT TO YOU? (Romans 14:7-12)

September 27, 2015

So if I were to ask the question, what are the important things in the life of a believer, what would you say?

Is it the church that they go to?

Is it the type of worship service they have on Sunday mornings? Whether it is contemporary in style or traditional?  Does the preacher teach the whole word of God vs. just the gospels?

Is it the witness the believer has before the world, is that important to you?  What about how they live before their brothers and sisters in Christ?

What if I were to change the questions and ask what are the things that Christ would judge as important in the life of the believer, would they be the same things?  Are the things you have done in your life, worthy of being judged by Christ?  Would they be considered important to Christ?

The fact is that we as Christians cannot live our lives apart from Christ.  Whether you live, you will have to live to Him; whether you die, you will have to die to Him.  To live to Christ means that it is how Christ looks at our lives that is most important to how we live.  What is important to Christ is what should be important to us, and nothing else.  Our Christian conduct is not gauged by the foods spread out on the table, but by the fact that our lives are spread out before Christ.  That is the important thing.  

All of these differences of opinions on debatable things, which seem so important to us now, will fade into insignificance when death enters the picture. There are those who doubt the Lordship of Christ before they die, but beyond the grave the Lordship of Christ will not be in debate at all.  

As a believer, Christ will judge the things we have done and give us rewards or loss, and as believers, it will be our greatest joy to cast the crowns of our rewards at the Lord’s feet.  Paul’s message to us is that if every believer maintains in his own life the Lordship of Christ, if it is Christ that we look to for approval, and not man, then true unity will not be impossible, in fact, it will happen without us even having to worry about it.  

 

HOW TO DEAL WITH DEBATABLE ISSUES (Romans 14:5-12)

HOW TO DEAL WITH DEBATABLE ISSUES (Romans 14:5-12)

September 20, 2015
Last week we began a section of study on how to handle debatable issues, and we said that there are going to be issues of Christian behavior where the Bible does not specifically say you must do it, nor does it clearly prohibit that activity either.  We asked the question about whether or not uniformity in thought about these debatable issues was imperative within the membership of a church, and Paul has advised us that, no it is not.  

In fact, while a lack of complete uniformity on debatable issues can be frustrating, Paul has told us to welcome the Christian brother and sister with various ideas.  He encouraged the brother who is stronger in the faith to embrace the weaker brother.  

Now, just to be clear, I will state that on issues where the Bible is clear, the church must not allow intentionally false doctrines to exist in the church.  People may have differing opinions even on these issues, but the Bible is to be final arbitrator on such an issue.  

If the Word of God proclaims homosexuality to be a sin, and it does, then it is a sin. Period. 

If the Word of God says that salvation is by grace alone, and it does, then salvation is by grace alone.  Period.  

God’s Word is final.  

But on issues that are not clearly defined in the Bible, such as some of the social issues, diets, and special worship days, we can disagree on things and remain in fellowship together. This is what our lesson is about today, how to deal with debatable issues and have unity in the church.
THE CHRISTIAN AND DEBATABLE ISSUES (Romans 14:1-4)

THE CHRISTIAN AND DEBATABLE ISSUES (Romans 14:1-4)

September 13, 2015
THE CHRISTIAN AND DEBATABLE THINGS

Without question, there a certain issues in our faith that are non-negotiable.  An example is the inerrancy of the Bible, for if the Bible is not true in every respect, then it is false in every respect and our faith is worthless.  

Another example is that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, He was born of a virgin, He died on the cross, He was buried in the tomb and He physically, bodily, rose from the grave on the third day, just like He said He would.  These truths are non-negotiable.  To be a born again believer, you must believe these things.  Uniformity in thought is demanded by God on these issues if you want to be a child of God.  

However, are there issues in the Christian life where uniformity in thought is not necessary?  In other words, are there issues about our faith that we can disagree on and it is ok?

What about eschatology?  The fact that certain events are going to occur, like the second coming of Christ, is not debatable.  The Bible is clear that Jesus is coming again.  However, the order of certain events, and various details about each event, while I may feel it is important, is it ok to have different opinions on these things?

What about social issues?  Like drinking, dancing, or the clothes we wear and how we wear them?  I remember when if a woman wore slacks to church she would likely be asked to leave.  I can also remember when wearing shorts in the sanctuary was not allowed.  Is it ok to disagree on these issues and it not become a faith issue between believers?

The answer to these questions is what our lesson is about today.  
THE MORAL HYPOCRITE (Romans 2:1-6)

THE MORAL HYPOCRITE (Romans 2:1-6)

July 30, 2014
We live in a world where man does not like to admit that his sinfulness and rebellion against God are at the heart of the problems of society.  We talk easily about how men are naturally good and that it is society that makes them bad.  We have a hard time taking responsibility for our actions in our society.  We are much more comfortable discussing imperfections, weaknesses, mistakes, and errors in judgment as the cause for our faults.  These terms are more socially acceptable, and almost everyone identifies with them, for we all have weaknesses.  

But an outright acknowledgment of guilt before a holy God, a 100 percent acceptance of responsibility for wrongdoing, is difficult for most people to do.  Yet, it is this kind of honesty that is the first step to the freedom from sin and guilt that God longs to give us and has provided for us in the death of Jesus Christ. 

It is easy to see the fault in others, to consider yourself as better than the other person.  It is even easier to praise the punishment of somebody else, but we become horrified when we are the subject of the punishment for doing the exact same thing.  When we judge others, there is no excuse for doing something wrong, but when we are judged ourselves our excuses are intended to exempt us, to explain our sins.  

God sees through our excuses and sees the sin. 

Listen to this podcast and learn how God condemns the moral hypocrite.
CAN YOU JUDGE A PERSON BY THEIR COVER? (James 2:1-7)

CAN YOU JUDGE A PERSON BY THEIR COVER? (James 2:1-7)

February 3, 2014
How good are you at judging a person by their outward appearance?

Can you define a person’s character by the way they dress, or how they speak?

As a believer, we know that the world judges us by how we dress, how we act, and the things we say.  Our purpose on this earth is to create a desire in people to want to know more about Jesus Christ by what they see in us.  Paul tells us that even in our deepest trials we are to have our hair fixed and a smile on our face.  The world needs to know that our relationship with Jesus Christ makes a difference in how we handle adversity.

But what does the Bible say about how Christians are to treat others?  

Are we to treat someone who is dressed in nice clothes differently from someone who is dressed shabbily?  

Are we to treat someone who has the outward appearance of success differently than you do the homeless person you see on the street?

Are we to judge the value of a person based on the color of their skin, the quality of their speech, or the length of their hair?

James will tell us that as a Christian we are to treat others without distinction to their outward appearance or their place in society.  Jesus was just as gracious to the woman at the well as He was to the rich young ruler.  He was as kind to Lazarus the beggar as He was the ruler of the synagogue.  

This is the way our churches should be, they are to be hospitals for sinners, all sinners, not some special, select, club, for the sisters of society.  

Listen to this podcast to learn how a Christian is to behave towards others.

Who Is My Judge? (1 Cor. 4:1-5)

Who Is My Judge? (1 Cor. 4:1-5)

March 27, 2011

Who is it that can judge you?  Who has a voice that can make a difference in the way you act, the things that you work on, and the things that you feel are important?  Who is it that establishes for you the absolute truths about what is right or wrong?

Is it your conscience?  Is it your wife or husband? Is it your friends?

In today's lesson, Paul is going to talk about who his judge is and who the Christian should be allowing to determine what is right or wrong for them.

This study is a verse-by-verse study of 1 Corinthians 4:1-5.