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  • Writer's picturePastor Curtis A. May

Gather in My name

Sermon for September 10, 2023

Matthew 18:19–20 19Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”

This is an argument for coming together to worship and to pray. God wants us to come together, learn His word, and agree on what we believe His word is teaching us. If we cannot believe God’s word, then how are we going to agree on anything? Even knowing God’s word, we cannot agree with one another.

One’s faith, as some claim, is the only basis of their belief, and this kind of faith can differ from another’s faith. If we say that faith is the only basis for our belief, we can make up anything we want and say our faith has demanded this.

Some believe that their belief is just through the Holy Spirit. But if I say the Holy Spirit led me to believe that I should kill all whom I deem as bad shall I believe this is the Holy Spirit speaking to me. Or if I say the Holy Spirit told me to verbally condemn those who do not believe as I do, should I believe that this was the Holy Spirit talking to me? The truth is the Holy Spirit will not go against the word of God. the Holy Spirit is God.

Who then knows the Holy Spirit? And who can say their faith is from God when they have clearly shown that they make their faith up as they go. We cannot justify ourselves to God people.

We cannot recreate God, and we surely cannot tell God how we want Him to accept us. If you think you can put God in a box designed to justify your sinful actions and beliefs, please let me know how that is working for you. Ahh, sorry you won’t be able to tell me, you must die for the answer, and that might be too late.

Matthew 18:1–4 1At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 2And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them 3and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

Jesus asks us to believe as a child who inherently and automatically believes in their father and mother. A child knows no difference and expects that their parents will lead them with truths and experience. We know Jesus is the truth so we know He will and is leading us in truths and experience. We follow God’s word as a child, for what do we know? Do we know anything unless our Father in heaven tells us?

God tells us all through His word and with the examples of His first chosen people. And God’s word is true, all of it. We see what happens when we do not follow God. And we see what happens when we do follow God.

Do you believe that the words of the prophets hold true to us today? We should as we continue to study God’s word. Truthfully, we should be learning to fear our God more and more each day. And we should know God’s wrath can come at any time. Do you think that a child fears their parents? We should as we too feared our parents at one time or another when we were very young.

Matthew 18:5–6 5“Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, 6but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.

I look at what is going on in our world today and especially what is being taught to our children. This has been going on a lot longer than you think. My now 47-year-old son came home from school and told me of how the schoolteachers were teaching that there is no such thing as truth or right and wrong. Truth and right and wrong comes from a majority. The schools were trying to teach that History can be rewritten and edited to give our new generations a different look on our country to show that our country is bad.

Do you know those who are teaching these things, woke, critical race theory? Do you know we are being taught through the media and entertainment that we should be hated if we do not believe in the agenda of those who are leading us through and to Marxism? And do they know that what they teach our children is tying a millstone around their necks and they will be thrown into the depths of the sea?

Matthew 18:7 7“Woe to the world for temptations to sin! For it is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the one by whom the temptation comes!

What? Temptation is necessary? This is a test for the next sixty temptations. This is a test. We are being tested every day because every day we are being tempted. Not that God is tempting us but that the evil in the world is tempting us. God is using this test to see who will remain faithful. Unfortunately, many are falling daily to temptation. And many more will continue to fall again and again.

Temptation is necessary as it shows us, we need a savior. We are weak but He is strong. Jesus came at just the right time as temptation was getting ready to launch a full-scale attack on God’s chosen. It has been launched and God launched salvation in its path to hold it off from claiming anyone who follows Jesus Christ our savior.

Matthew 18:10–11 10“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven. 11For the Son of Man came to save the lost.

Our children, our grandchildren, and our great grandchildren are becoming more and more lost as the world’s temptation is upon them. The world’s temptation is as cunning as the serpent in the Garden of Eden. We must fall back to the line God has sent to harbor those who are faithful. Jesus Christ is that line, Jesus Christ is our only saving grace.

Jesus came at just the right time to stay in the world through faith, God’s word, the Holy Spirit. Jesus who died for our sins and was raised for our eternal salvation. Jesus who will lead us to an eternal relationship with our Father in heaven. We are blessed by grace and mercy through this savior who suffered and died for our fall to temptation. And believe it or not Jesus Christ is helping us to hold on, weather the storm, and receive the crown at the end of this race.

Matthew 18:12–14 12What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? 13And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray. 14So it is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.

God has planned for this celebration of us, as God has planned through time our salvation. God sent His Son to find the lost. We are the lost, and we are the found. God will celebrate with us all in the eternal feast of heaven and eternal life on a new world. Amen.

Written by Pastor Curtis A. May


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