"He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love." --- (SofS 2:4)
Travis Case, Pastor/Teacher Northgate Baptist Church F.E.A.S.T Ministries
"Self-Love Vs Self-Denial"
, "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God." --- V. 9, "Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. 10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; 11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; 12 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; 13 Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. 14 Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. 15 Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. 16 Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. 17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. 18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. 19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. 20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. 21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good."
A. Let me say by-way of introduction:
1. There is No Special Honor or Glory In Being Poor and having little of the comforts of this world.
a. Some of the most Greedy, Selfish, Covetous, and Prideful people I know are Very Poor in the comforts of this world.
b. You can Give Away Everything you have and Not Be Right With God.
2. It is Not A Sin To Be Rich and have an Abundance of the comforts of this world --- we should Never Be Embarrassed, Ashamed, or Apologize because of Godís Blessings.
3. The sin is in our Attitude Toward These Things --- Do we Control Them or do they Control Us.
a. I am Not talking about "Being Willing To" --- so long as God Doesnít Ask me to do so.
b. I am talking about "Truly" being willing, No Matter What.
4. It Is A Matter of Priorities!
B. More Lies, Exaggerations, And Criticism Have Been Leveled At Preachers Who Would Dare Preach On This Subject Than Just About Anything Else .
1. I am not speaking of lies and criticism from the world, I am speaking of Christians doing so.
2 I fully expect to be Misunderstood, Misquoted, Misrepresented, and Criticized for this message --- that is the reason I made the preceeding statements about Wealth & Comfort Not Being A Sin.
3 You will understand what I mean by that as we proceed with the message.
C. I can preach on the Sacrifice and Self-denial of the Lord Jesus Christ and many will sit in the pews and say A-Men.
They are all for Jesus sacrificing and practicing self-denial for them but Donít Ask Them To do it for the Lord
D. We criticize Bennie Hinn and his Prosperity Gospel, but we are just as guilt.
1. Many of us are just Little Bennie Hinns clothed in our own Self-righteous Baptist Garb.
2. We are much more discrete with ours attitudes than he is.
E. How Happy Would You Be With The Lord If He:
1. Ask you to drive a Car ten years old with rattles, instead of the nice car you drive now.
2. Ask you to move out of that nice House you live in and move into one that only cost half as much --- what if it was a wood frame house on a dirt road out in the country --- ten miles from a small town --- no mall.
3. Ask you to take a cut in Salary to the extent you would not be able to walk around with a wad of money in your pocket and more in the bank.
4. Ask you to cut down your Wardrobe to the extent that you may have to wear the same clothes twice during the same week.
5. Ask you to leave the area that you now live in and move to an area of people that you consider to be "Lower Class" than what you consider yourself to be, so that you may live among them and minister unto them?
F. Keep in mind:
Rev. 3:17 , "Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:"
G. Now that I have Alienated some of you, lets get on with our message, "The Most Neglected, Hated & Despised Message of The 21st Century ".
I. Jesus Christ Set The Example of Self-Denial.
A. He denied Himself the Lordship of this world.
Matthew 4:8-10, "Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; 9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. 10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve."
B. He denied Himself Comfort.
Matthew 8:20, "And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head."
C. He denied Himself His Own Pleasures.
John 6:38, "For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me."
D. He denied Himself His Very Life.
Philippians 2:6-8, "Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross."
II. Self-Denial Is A Test of Our Devotedness To Christ.
A. We should be More devoted to Christ than we are to Our Own Families.
Matthew 10:37-38, "He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me."
Joshua 24:15, "And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; ..... but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."
That is, Unless my children have a ball game, dance recital, or some other activity they desire to attend.
B. We should be More devoted to Christ than we are to Ourselves.
Luke 9:23-24, "And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. 24 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it."
III. Self-Denial Is Necessary:
A. In Following Christ.
Luke 14:27, "And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple." --- V. 33, "So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple."
B. In the Warfare of Saints.
2 Timothy 2:4, "No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier."
C. To the Triumph of Saints.
1 Corinthians 9:25-27, "And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: 27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway."
IV. Self-Denial Should Be Exercised In:
A. Denying Ungodliness And Worldly Lust.
Romans 6:12, "Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof."
Titus 2:12, "Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;"
1 Peter 2:11, "Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;" --- 4:2, "That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God."
B. Not Pleasing Ourselves.
Romans 15:1-3, "We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. 2 Let every one of us please his neighbour for his good to edification. 3 For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me."
C. Not Seeking Our Own Profit.
1 Corinthians 10:24, "Let no man seek his own, but every man anotherís wealth." --- V. 33, "Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved."
1 Corinthians 13:5, Love - "... seeketh not her own,"
D. Forsaking All.
Luke 14:33, "So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.
E. Taking Up Our Cross And Following Christ.
Matthew 10:38, "And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me."
Matthew 16:24, "Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me."
F. Being Crucified With Christ.
Romans 6:6, "Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin."
G. Being Crucified Unto The World.
Galatians 6:14, "But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world."
H. Crucifying The Flesh.
Galatians 5:24-25, "And they that are Christís have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit."
I. Preferring Christ To All Earthly Relations.
Matthew 8:21-22, "And another of his disciples said unto him, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. 22 But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead."
V. Self-Denial Becomes Strangers And Pilgrims.
A. Hebrews 11:13-16, "These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. 14 For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. 15 And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. 16 But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city."
B. 1 Peter 2:11, "Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;"
VI. The Danger of Neglecting Self-Denial.
A. For The Christian.
1 Corinthians 9:27, "But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway."
B. For The Lost.
Matthew 16:25-26, "For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. 26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?"
VII. The Reward of Self-Denial.
A. Matthew 19:28-29, "And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my nameís sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life."
B. Romans 8:13, "For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live."
C. 2 Peter 1:4, "Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust."
VIII. Self-Denial Is Exemplified By Abraham.
Genesis 13:9, "Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left."
IX. Lack of Self-Denial Is Exemplified By The Rich Young Fool.
X. Ministers Are Especially Called To Exercise Self-Denial.
2 Corinthians 6:4-10, "But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, 5 In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings; 6 By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned, 7 By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, 8 By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true; 9 As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; 10 As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things."
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