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Three Tests for the New Year Psalms 26:2 Put me on trial, Lord, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and my heart.

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Presentation on theme: "Three Tests for the New Year Psalms 26:2 Put me on trial, Lord, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and my heart."— Presentation transcript:

1 Three Tests for the New Year Psalms 26:2 Put me on trial, Lord, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and my heart

2 Tests/Examinations A very sad boy said to his dad one afternoon, Dad, I think I failed that math test today. A very sad boy said to his dad one afternoon, Dad, I think I failed that math test today. The father replied, Son, be positive. The father replied, Son, be positive. The boy answered, O.K., Dad, Im positive I failed that math test today! The boy answered, O.K., Dad, Im positive I failed that math test today! Pop quizzes and Exams Pop quizzes and Exams Dr. Clyde Q. Shelley Dr. Clyde Q. Shelley Each pop quiz = ten points Each pop quiz = ten points 1/3 semesters grade 1/3 semesters grade 1/3 from mid term tests 1/3 from mid term tests 1/3 from final exam 1/3 from final exam

3 Tests/Examinations Every Christian faces the same kinds of exams Every Christian faces the same kinds of exams A daily pop quiz A daily pop quiz Occasional big exams Occasional big exams A major final exam A major final exam The way you deal with the daily exam will largely determine the grade or reward The way you deal with the daily exam will largely determine the grade or reward Not whether you pass or fail Not whether you pass or fail But your reward received at the Big Final Exam But your reward received at the Big Final Exam The Judgment Seat of Christ The Judgment Seat of Christ Where a believers works are judged Where a believers works are judged

4 1 Corinthians 3:10-15 10According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. 11For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13each ones work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each ones work, of what sort it is. 14If anyones work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 15If anyones work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.

5 God Tests His People! He tests the mind and the heart He tests the mind and the heart He tested the Israelites in the wilderness He tested the Israelites in the wilderness God fed them manna God fed them manna To see if they would obey To see if they would obey To see if they loved Him To see if they loved Him Deuteronomy 13:3 - Deuteronomy 13:3 - you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the LORD your God is testing you to know whether you love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

6 God Tests His People! God tested God tested Abraham – Genesis 22 Abraham – Genesis 22 Gideons soldiers – Judges 7-9 Gideons soldiers – Judges 7-9 Joseph – waiting Gods promises - Psalm 105:19 Joseph – waiting Gods promises - Psalm 105:19 Hezekiah – God withdrew from him so that He might know all that was in his heart - 2 Chronicles 32:31 Hezekiah – God withdrew from him so that He might know all that was in his heart - 2 Chronicles 32:31

7 God Tests His People! Job says that God tests man continually - Job 7:17-18 Job says that God tests man continually - Job 7:17-18 Job says that when God has tested him he will come forth like gold - Job 23:10 Job says that when God has tested him he will come forth like gold - Job 23:10 Isaiah says that God tests His people in a furnace of affliction like silver - Isaiah 48:10 Isaiah says that God tests His people in a furnace of affliction like silver - Isaiah 48:10 Paul - It is God Who tests our hearts - 1 Thessalonians 2:4 Paul - It is God Who tests our hearts - 1 Thessalonians 2:4

8 God Tests His People! Gods tests are very special for His people Gods tests are very special for His people Main purpose of Gods tests = to show a persons real character Main purpose of Gods tests = to show a persons real character James 1:2 - count it all joy when you fall into testings James 1:2 - count it all joy when you fall into testings Peter tells us why - that the proving or testing of our faith may result in glory for God - 1 Peter 1:7 Peter tells us why - that the proving or testing of our faith may result in glory for God - 1 Peter 1:7

9 A Three Part New Years Test Biblical advice Biblical advice Lamentations 3:40 Lamentations 3:40 Let us search out (test) and examine our ways, And turn back to the LORD Let us search out (test) and examine our ways, And turn back to the LORD 2 Corinthians 13:5 2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?; unless indeed you are disqualified Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?; unless indeed you are disqualified New Year New Year Time to reflect, consider the past, plan for the future Time to reflect, consider the past, plan for the future Find a quiet place - honestly take the following test Find a quiet place - honestly take the following test Three part test - roots in the Sermon on the Mount Three part test - roots in the Sermon on the Mount The Attitude test The Attitude test The Affirmation test The Affirmation test The Action test The Action test

10 I. The Attitude Test James Allen James Allen As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he Aphorism = A tersely phrased statement of a truth or opinion; an adage; a saying Aphorism = A tersely phrased statement of a truth or opinion; an adage; a saying Proverbs 23:7 Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he Attitude is the issue!

11 I. The Attitude Test Herb Hodges the beatitudes are good attitudes to be in Herb Hodges the beatitudes are good attitudes to be in Each beatitude in Matthew 5 is based on an inward attitude which is intended to stimulate an outward lifestyle Each beatitude in Matthew 5 is based on an inward attitude which is intended to stimulate an outward lifestyle

12 Matthew 5:3-11 3.Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4.Blessed are those who mourn, For they shall be comforted. 5.Blessed are the meek, For they shall inherit the earth. 6.Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled. 7.Blessed are the merciful, For they shall obtain mercy. 8.Blessed are the pure in heart, For they shall see God. 9.Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God. 10.Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11.Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake.

13 The Attitude Test Which best describe your present attitude? Which best describe your present attitude? Thanksgiving, praise, celebration, positive attitude Thanksgiving, praise, celebration, positive attitude Indifference, apathy, tension, frustration, bitterness, anger Indifference, apathy, tension, frustration, bitterness, anger Castle of Mansoul - Pilgrims Progress – John Bunyan Castle of Mansoul - Pilgrims Progress – John Bunyan Diabolonians attack the Castle Diabolonians attack the Castle Any one of these can capture the Castle of Mansoul at any time Any one of these can capture the Castle of Mansoul at any time A whole hoard of invaders can hold Mansoul hostage at any time A whole hoard of invaders can hold Mansoul hostage at any time Emmanuel battles against the Diabolonians Emmanuel battles against the Diabolonians Mansoul may be in perfect peace Mansoul may be in perfect peace Isaiah 26:3 You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. Isaiah 26:3 You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. Not because he is passive and indifferent Not because he is passive and indifferent But because his inner character is controlled by Emmanuel - the Lord Jesus Christ! But because his inner character is controlled by Emmanuel - the Lord Jesus Christ!

14 Peace of Heart John 14:27 John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you; not as the world gives, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you; not as the world gives, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. Peace is not the absence of conflict Peace is not the absence of conflict It is the confidence that comes from the control of a Victor! It is the confidence that comes from the control of a Victor! Isaiah 32:17 Isaiah 32:17 The work of righteousness will be peace, And the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever The work of righteousness will be peace, And the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever Take a few moments and remain still Take a few moments and remain still Check your attitude Check your attitude Is there peace in your heart? Is there peace in your heart? Be sure that all of your life is yielded up to Jesus Be sure that all of your life is yielded up to Jesus

15 II. The Affirmation Test 1 Thessalonians 5:11 Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing How free are you? How free are you? Free enough to positively affirm others? Free enough to positively affirm others? Free enough to receive affirmation from others? Free enough to receive affirmation from others? How skilled are you in affirming others? How skilled are you in affirming others? How bold are you in affirming others? How bold are you in affirming others?

16 Our Model Jesus Christ Jesus Christ Even His harshest rebukes contain affirmations Even His harshest rebukes contain affirmations Even His commands are affirmations Even His commands are affirmations This is your responsibility--and you can fulfill it if you appropriate My grace and power! This is your responsibility--and you can fulfill it if you appropriate My grace and power! Affirmation is a crucial form of encouragement Affirmation is a crucial form of encouragement Mark Twain, I can run three months on just one tiny compliment! Mark Twain, I can run three months on just one tiny compliment! Matthew 7:12 Matthew 7:12 "Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets "Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets Everyone likes to be affirmed or complimented Everyone likes to be affirmed or complimented Anis Shorrosh – Lovely Loretta – she glowed! Anis Shorrosh – Lovely Loretta – she glowed! Michelle Michelle

17 Affirmation The sports page - a star football player: The sports page - a star football player: One positive statement from my coach is worth a hundred compliments from sportswriters One positive statement from my coach is worth a hundred compliments from sportswriters Every parent/grandparent is a coach Every parent/grandparent is a coach Every disciple-maker/teacher is a coach Every disciple-maker/teacher is a coach A player-coach! A player-coach! Every member of his team needs affirmation! Every member of his team needs affirmation! May God forgive us for not affirming people more! May God forgive us for not affirming people more! Especially those God has placed in our lives for us to disciple! Especially those God has placed in our lives for us to disciple!

18 Affirmation or Rebuke? All of us work best in the sunshine of approval All of us work best in the sunshine of approval A little boy to his father A little boy to his father Lets play darts! Ill throw, and you say, Wonderful! Lets play darts! Ill throw, and you say, Wonderful! Jesus saw sinners, but He treated them like saints Jesus saw sinners, but He treated them like saints Adam Clarke – Methodist theologian Adam Clarke – Methodist theologian Father warned Adams teacher - He wont do well Father warned Adams teacher - He wont do well The teacher, He looks perfectly bright to me The teacher, He looks perfectly bright to me Adam later testified that that one brief sentence spoken by his teacher in a casual moment changed his life forever! Adam later testified that that one brief sentence spoken by his teacher in a casual moment changed his life forever! Daniel Daniel 2nd grade music teacher told him he could lead in singing 2nd grade music teacher told him he could lead in singing Killed his joy for music until this day! Killed his joy for music until this day! Performance awards – many small – given publicly with affirmation Performance awards – many small – given publicly with affirmation

19 Affirmation or Rebuke? Rebuke has its place Rebuke has its place But honey draws more flies than vinegar But honey draws more flies than vinegar TV today - always tearing people down - teaches us to tear one another down, not build one another up! TV today - always tearing people down - teaches us to tear one another down, not build one another up! Many people open their affirmations with Many people open their affirmations with Now I dont want to give you the big-head Now I dont want to give you the big-head I dont want to inflate your ego I dont want to inflate your ego Well, give me a chance, anyway! Well, give me a chance, anyway! God has a Giant Pin with which He bursts the balloon of inflated ego! God has a Giant Pin with which He bursts the balloon of inflated ego! Be secure and free enough in Christ Jesus to give honest affirmations Be secure and free enough in Christ Jesus to give honest affirmations

20 III. The Action Test Jesus Example - Matthew 11:2-11 Jesus Example - Matthew 11:2-11 As we read, feel the crisis of doubt and uncertainty which grips the heart of John the Baptist As we read, feel the crisis of doubt and uncertainty which grips the heart of John the Baptist John in the dark doubts what God has clearly shown him in the light John in the dark doubts what God has clearly shown him in the light He is in prison He is in prison His situation is graveyard serious His situation is graveyard serious He sends a message to Jesus, asking, Are you really the Messiah, or should we look for another? He sends a message to Jesus, asking, Are you really the Messiah, or should we look for another?

21 Matthew 11:2-11 2. 2.And when John had heard in prison about the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples 3. 3.and said to Him, Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another? 4. 4.Jesus answered and said to them, Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: 5. 5.The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them. 6. 6.And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me. 7. 7.As they departed, Jesus began to say to the multitudes concerning John: What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind?

22 Matthew 11:2-11 8. 8.But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed, those who wear soft clothing are in kings houses. 9. 9.But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet. 10. 10.For this is he of whom it is written: Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You. 11. 11.Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

23 III. The Action Test Two things are attacking John the Baptist in this passage – Two things are attacking John the Baptist in this passage – Inactivity - a potential killer Inactivity - a potential killer Isolation – if prolonged, a sure detriment Isolation – if prolonged, a sure detriment It is very significant that Jesus didnt give a direct answer to Johns question It is very significant that Jesus didnt give a direct answer to Johns question John needs immediate attention! John needs immediate attention! He said, Go and tell John what you hear and see He said, Go and tell John what you hear and see Dont tell him what I am saying; tell him what I am doing Dont tell him what I am saying; tell him what I am doing

24 The Mid-term Exam For Jesus, the mid-term exam was the test of action For Jesus, the mid-term exam was the test of action Matthew 7:24 Whoever hears these sayings of mine, and does them Matthew 7:24 Whoever hears these sayings of mine, and does them Jesus didnt seem to be very impressed with what people said Jesus didnt seem to be very impressed with what people said He was more impressed with what they did He was more impressed with what they did Believers are known by their fruits - John 15:1-11 Believers are known by their fruits - John 15:1-11 True prophets can be distinguished from false prophets by what actually happens True prophets can be distinguished from false prophets by what actually happens Matthew 7:21 - Not every one who says to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my father who is in heaven Matthew 7:21 - Not every one who says to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my father who is in heaven When Simon Peter professed that he loved Jesus, Jesus told him, Feed my sheep - John 21:15-23 When Simon Peter professed that he loved Jesus, Jesus told him, Feed my sheep - John 21:15-23

25 Action or Guilt? God is still doing these things from Matthew 11 God is still doing these things from Matthew 11 His doing must not be kept secret His doing must not be kept secret Do your actions line you up with what God is doing? Do your actions line you up with what God is doing? Often our own sin keeps us from thinking that God can use us to do the work of His kingdom Often our own sin keeps us from thinking that God can use us to do the work of His kingdom

26 May, 1982, Guideposts True story - British violinist Peter Cropper True story - British violinist Peter Cropper The Royal Academy of Music in London honored him by lending him a priceless 258-year-old Stradivarius The Royal Academy of Music in London honored him by lending him a priceless 258-year-old Stradivarius While Cropper was performing in Finland, He tripped and fell on the Stradivarius and broke it While Cropper was performing in Finland, He tripped and fell on the Stradivarius and broke it His dream was instantly turned into a nightmare His dream was instantly turned into a nightmare Then a London violin dealer told him of a master craftsman who could repair the Stradivarius Then a London violin dealer told him of a master craftsman who could repair the Stradivarius The repairs were so perfect they could not be seen The repairs were so perfect they could not be seen The soaring notes of the instrument were more beautiful than before The soaring notes of the instrument were more beautiful than before The broken parts had been placed in the hands of a master craftsman who applied his master touch! The broken parts had been placed in the hands of a master craftsman who applied his master touch!

27 Something terrible has happened! A fall has taken place A fall has taken place All of our lives have been shattered by sin All of our lives have been shattered by sin But when they are placed into the hands of Heavens Master Craftsman, He takes the smashed pieces and puts them back together again But when they are placed into the hands of Heavens Master Craftsman, He takes the smashed pieces and puts them back together again And we are BETTER THAN NEW! And we are BETTER THAN NEW! How is your attitude? How is your attitude? Jesus wants to remake it pure and righteous Jesus wants to remake it pure and righteous How well are you doing with affirmation? How well are you doing with affirmation? Jesus wants to use you to affirm others and build them up Jesus wants to use you to affirm others and build them up Do your daily actions place you in the mainstream of Gods Kingdom work? Do your daily actions place you in the mainstream of Gods Kingdom work?

28 Interpreting the Hymn A father took his young son to church A father took his young son to church The boy entered enthusiastically into the singing The boy entered enthusiastically into the singing The congregation sang The congregation sang Rise up, O men of God Be done with lesser things Give heart and mind and soul and strength To serve the King of kings The father thought he heard something different The father thought he heard something different He leaned over and listened carefully and discovered that his son was singing, Wise up, O men of God! He leaned over and listened carefully and discovered that his son was singing, Wise up, O men of God!

29 The Tests The Attitude test The Attitude test A lot like daily pop quizzes A lot like daily pop quizzes The Affirmation test The Affirmation test A Lot like mid term tests A Lot like mid term tests The Action test The Action test A lot like final exams A lot like final exams Put me on trial, Lord, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and my heart


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