1 Samuel 31:1-33

1 Samuel 31:1-33

1 Samuel 31:13Vintage message from January 24, 1999.

God is not obligated to answer our prayers when we are selfishly seeking for our own gain and using Him as something less than what He really is: the God and Creator of this universe, the One Who wants relationship and is desiring relationship with us. He wants us loving Him, receiving His love, and walking with Him daily, not just turning to Him in our time of need, but turning to Him because He is our need. He is our need… We need to get away from using God for our benefit and start honoring God because He’s our Creator… We are the created vessel. We are here for His use. We are to be used in His hand, for Him to glorify Himself. He’s not there for us to use when we want to be glorified, when we want to be lifted up, when we want to look good. That’s not what He’s there for…

One of the problems we have in society today is that we do not interpret the Bible based on what the Bible says; we interpret the Bible based on our life perspective — what’s gone on in our own lives and how we’ve lived and the things that we’ve experienced, and then we understand God from that perspective rather than looking at His Word…

It’s only been…a little more than two hundred years, and this nation’s already begun to reject God to the point that we’ve kicked Him out of school, we’ve kicked Him out of just about every part of public life, and you know what? There are many churches also closing their doors to the Word of God, the standard that God has set. They’re saying…”Since God won’t allow” — and we go down the row and name every sin that any one of us is participating in and say, “Since God won’t allow it in our church, we’re going to kick God out, and we’re going to show the world that we as a people can love the world even better than God did.” And in fact, we then begin to reject God even within the institution of the church. But understand, God is not concerned about institutions… God is concerned about the hearts of individuals… God is concerned about how you and I as individuals respond to Him, and as we receive Jesus into our life, as we walk in relationship with God, He calls us the church. We’re not an institution. We’re a body. We’re not a place to meet. We are a functioning organism. We are meant to work together, love together, share together, and when we’re not sharing together, when we’re dysfunctional as the body, it’s noticeable…

He will be looking at the hearts of individuals. Because He’s a loving God, He’s looking for those that He can preserve. He’s looking for those that will walk in relationship with Him, that He can use to reach those around them… We have a God in heaven Who created and is far more powerful than any circumstance we’ll find. We have to be prepared, though, to call out to the Lord our God… I believe God wants us to stand firm to the end.

Pastor Dave Elkins