August 30, 2018

Since I was a child, one of my favorite preachers has always been Dr. Johnny Pope. We have been privileged to have Dr. Pop many times at Kerwin and will be having him many times in the future, Lord willing. Every once in a while Dr. Pope will send me what he would call a short sermon. I get these periodically from him and when I read this when I wanted to share this with those of you that have been following these devotions every day. I know this will be a blessing

I AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE:

TO GUIDE AND PROVIDE

Gideon: Beauty For Ashes

Text: Isaiah 61:3 To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

One of the most unusual stories of how God uses a man and how God guides a man is found in the book of Judges. Gideon, the reluctant champion of Israel is chosen by God to lead Israel into a glorious victory. Romans 15:4 comes to mind when I think of this story, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.”
By means of introduction into Gideon’s call to be a judge, I bring to your attention:
The chastisement of God- Judges 6:1
Israel’s response- Judges 6:2
The havoc that ensued- Judges 6:3-6a
Israel’s correct response- Judges 3:6b
The Message from God- Judges 3:8-10
The Messenger God is chosen- Judges 3:11

I. CHOSEN BUT FROZEN
Judges 6:11
Fear drives a person to do strange things. Fear of man and the events of life place a person in bondage. Christ is the bondage breaker of fear. Romans 8:15, “For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” Hebrews 2:15, “And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.”

II. POUTING AND DOUBTING
Judges 6:13,15
I marvel at the patience o four Lord with us. Too many tomes we picture our Lord with a proverbial “Sword of Damocles,” just waiting to judge us n the least slip up. But here we see in Psalm 86:15, “But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth.” We see in Romans 2:4 a beautiful truth, “Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?” We see God’s goodness in longsuffering is to get us to the point of repentance and acceptance to Him and His plan.