Good Monday Morning To You.
Happy Labor Day!!! Do you have any plans? Many people like to have that one last pic-nic before fall and winter arrives. In my hometown of Cincinnati, there is a huge fireworks display down on the banks of the Ohio River. This impressive show has been an annual event for nearly 30 years. I might be off on its length, but it is a fantastic show with the fireworks timed to music. You can tune on your radio to a certain station and hear the music while you watch the fireworks. Even if you are not there, their selection of music is first rate. It is one of the biggest fireworks shows in America, second to only New York City. I remember one year when the kids were younger, taking them downtown to the show. I knew driving and parking would be tough, so we boarded a city bus, dedicated for the purpose, and it took us to the main deck of Riverfront Stadium. As I recall the fare was a dollar per person round trip. I gladly paid it in order not to have to fight the traffic.
Yesterday was a great day at Friendship Harmony. The attendance was right on target for this time of year, and we had a good, Spirit filled service. We sang the song, “Count Your Blessings.” We stopped at the end of each verse, and I randomly chose someone l recount a blessing. It is always good to hear the testimonies of God’s people. After the final verse I opened it up to anyone who wanted to share. What a blessing --- I wish you could have been there to experience it.
Although most of you could not be with us in person, you can view the message as it was delivered yesterday at Friendship Harmony. I preached part two of a series of messages titled, “Why Suffering?” To see the video, go to www.facebook.com/friendshipharmony. This video is about 30 minutes in length, and in it I examined “rebellion” as we search for the answer to, “How could a good God allow suffering?” Next week we will explore, “The Nature Of God” as we zero in on our answer
The notes are below for yesterday’s message, and as always you are free to use them for your personal, or group Bible Study.
Why Suffering? (C)
Suffering Series 2 of ? 8/12-30/14
By Victor Cooper
Intro: The other day I was asked, “Why does God allow suffering? Why does He allow someone to hurt an innocent person?” This is the age old question which was probably asked by Eve when she buried her son, Abel.
Review: Last week we discovered that sin originated with Lucifer; it did not originate with God. We learned that the reason for suffering is sin. Sin means, “to miss the mark.”
The question is not, “Why is their suffering?” The question is, “Why does God allow suffering? To continue our quest for an answer, we must look at the results of sin.
I. Sin is rebellion.
A. It might be rebellion against nature. Example:. Intentionally setting a forest fire.
B. It might be a sin against mankind. Example:
C. It might be a sin against an individual. Example:
Stealing from someone.
D. Ultimately, all rebellion is against God.
God gave the 10 commandments with His own finger, and with His own mouth.
II. The divisions of law. The Jewish law is divided into three separate and distinct parts.
A. The civil law. These were laws pertaining to the citizens of ancient Israel. They have passed away as that society has passed away. Example:
The laws of Jamestown, Virginia in 1609 are different from the laws in Jamestown, Virginia in 2014.
B. The religious law. These laws pertained to the worship services of ancient Israel. When the veil in the Temple was torn in two at the crucifixion of Christ, the religious laws were fulfilled, thereby rendering them non-binding on believers today.
C. The moral laws are as binding on us today as they were upon Israel in the wilderness when God introduced them.
D. A moral law suggests a moral law Giver. Therefore rebellion against any part of the law is rebellion against Him.
III. Rebel rousers often try to enlist the aid of others in their cause.
A. Lucifer enlisting the aid of a group of angels rebels against God. This rebellion is squashed by God Himself. For the fallen angels there is no redemption.
B. Lucifer next enlists the aid of God’s most special creation: man.
1. Man is not special because of his intellect, man is special because he is the only created being of God, angel or animal who God said, “Let us make man in our own image. Gen 1:26
C. At the point of sin man became under sin’s penalty:
Death. Death means separation from God.
1. The curse. Genesis 3:14-19 And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:  And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.  Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.  And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;  Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;  In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.
2. The continued line of sin. The Apocryphal Book of 2 Esdras says, “For the first Adam bearing a wicked heart transgressed, and was overcome; and all they that be born of him.” 2 Esdras 3:21
3. David the Psalmist would agree when he wrote, “ Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.
4. Why is there suffering? Because all mankind is fallen and cursed. All of us are capable of horrible acts
5. The antidote is Jesus. Jesus erased the
penalty of sin, the Holy Spirit assists with dealing with the power of sin, and the Father will one day remove the presence of sin.
Whatever your plans for Labor Day, stay safe, and have a good time. If you’re grilling burgers, be sure to throw one on the fire for me. Don’t forget the cheese when it’s done! I’ll see you tomorrow on the video at www.facebook.com/friendshipharmony, and back here next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic!!!