Search Me, O God (Part 2)Submitted by Pastor Chad Wagner on Wednesday, December 3, 2014.
I. God tells us to consider our ways (Hag 1:5). i. If we do, and then turn from our wickedness, we will be spared death (Eze 18:28). ii. This is true of a church, as well as individuals (Rev 2:4-5; Rev 3:1-3). iii. It works with a nation, too (Jer 18:7-8; 2Ch 7:14). 2. We should ask God to try us (Psa 139:23-24; Psa 26:2). A. Trying is the painful process of separating out sinful things in our lives and disposing of them. i. Try v. - 1. a. trans. To separate (one thing) from another or others; to set apart; to distinguish. 3. spec. To separate (metal) from the ore or dross by melting; to refine, purify by fire; also, to remove (the dross or impurity) from metal by fire. Usually with out. Also fig. ii. Precious metals are tried with intense heat to remove impurities (Psa 12:6 c/w Pro 25:4). iii. The same process is necessary in a spiritual sense to remove spiritual impurities in us (Pro 17:3; Psa 66:10; Zec 13:9; Job 23:10). iv. God tempted (tried) Abraham to prove his faith (Gen 22:1). a. Tempt v. - 1. To try, make trial of, put to the test or proof; to try the quality, worth, or truth of. b. God did the same thing to Joseph (Psa 105:17-19). c. The Lord also did the same thing to Israel (Deu 8:2-3). d. The trials that God puts us through are ultimately for our good (Deu 8:16). v. God will purify His priests that they may make offerings in righteousness (Mal 3:3 c/w 1Pe 2:5). vi. God will also try a man's ministry and will burn off the wood, hay, and stubble that were not built upon the foundation of Jesus Christ (1Co 3:9-15). B. God will sometimes leave His children for a time to try them and see what is in their hearts (2Ch 32:31). i. He may leave us for a small moment (Isa 54:7-8). ii. He will leave us until we acknowledge our sins and seek Him (Hos 5:15). iii. He will never utterly forsake us though (Psa 89:30-34; Heb 13:5). C. When you ask for God to try your heart, expect a fiery trial and don't think some strange thing has happened to you (1Pe 4:12). D. It might be painful, but we have to trust Him (Job 13:15). E. The trying of our faith worketh patience (Jam 1:3). i. Patience n. - 1. a. The suffering or enduring (of pain, trouble, or evil) with calmness and composure; the quality or capacity of so suffering or enduring. b. Forbearance, longsuffering, longanimity under provocation of any kind; esp. forbearance or bearing with others, their faults, limitations, etc. c. The calm abiding of the issue of time, processes, etc.; quiet and self-possessed waiting for something; ‘the quality of expecting long without rage or discontent’ ii. The trials and tribulations we face work patience, experience, and ultimately hope (Rom 5:3-5). iii. Experience n. - 1. a. The action of putting to the test; trial. to make experience of: to make trial of. iv. Hope n. - 1. a. Expectation of something desired; desire combined with expectation. F. The Christian life is full of trials (2Co 4:8-9). G. The ministry is especially trying (2Co 6:4-10). H. God will send us manifold temptations to put our faith to trial (1Pe 1:6-7). i. Trial n. - 2. a. The action of testing or putting to the proof the fitness, truth, strength, or other quality of anything; test, probation. b. The fact or condition of being tried by suffering or temptation; probation. ii. This will happen after one is converted and joins the church (Heb 10:32-33). iii. Members of true churches will be tried (Rev 2:8-10). a. Of the seven churches written to in Revelation, the church in Smyrna was one of the two churches which was not rebuked; and yet they were told then would be tried and would receive a crown of life if they were faithful unto death (Rev 2:10). b. On the other hand, the other faithful church in Philadelphia was told that they would not be tried with others because they had kept God's word (Rev 3:10). c. It is God's prerogative as to whether He decides to try a church. d. We should be thankful either way. I. After asking God to try us, we should do some trying ourselves (Lam 3:40). J. If we purge the vessels of dishonor from ourselves, we will be ready to used by God (2Ti 2:20-21). K. Remember, Isaiah had to have a hot coal purge the sin of his lips before he was ready to say, "Here am I; send me." (Isa 6:6-8)
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