Institutional First Baptist Church Weekly Sermon
Delivered By
Dr. E. G. Sherman, Jr.
Delivered On
January 26, 2014 at 10:45 AM
Subject
Getting to Know God
Description

The mind is an essential component of human nature.

It does not stand along in importance; instead it is but one

of numerous systems that contribute to the normal person.

The mind, however, is the center for seeking, acquiring,

retaining, recalling, and formulating conclusions about the

realities of life. The mind is bombarded by multi stimuli starting in

early childhood and becoming more formal in the school arena.

This increasing formalization becomes the order of the day in

higher education and the work place. Blurring this structured thinking

and drawing conclusions is the media

network: television and social electronic network. Amidst

the impelling desire is often absent when the inquiry is focused on God.

This omission causes such an individual to be susceptible to views

of others without a personal anchor

to endorse or refute assertions about God. It is in response

to the regretful reality that our sermon for today has been

planned. It is entitled Getting to Know God.

The overall objective of this sermon is to provide

guidelines for Getting to Know God. Undergirding this

subject are three dimensions, namely: to identify some

barriers in getting to know God, to delineate methods

for use in Getting to Know God, and to encourage hearers

and readers of the sermon to get to God.

Deviating from the usual sermon format that involves

the historical perspective on the biblical anchor and writer,

the focus will be directed to earlier specified components

of the sermon, the one is - to identify some barriers in getting

to know God. The task of getting to know God, while easily

to articulate such a task, is complicated by several

barriers. Since these hurdles are so prevalent and

can - in biblical terminology - " so easily beset us" some

attention must be focused on them. There is, first, the

problem of being uninformed about the basic doctrines

of Christianity; this lack of knowledge leaves a person

vulnerable to claims and interpretations of a non Christian

or cultist. The second problem or barrier in getting to know

God is that of Atheism. This is the assertion that there is

no God. Notice the word consists of an A and then theism.

That letter A negates the reality of theism which is the

belief in God. The third barrier is submitted by a segment

of the scientific arena; it is that of scientism; this view

insists that reality must be consistent with and verified

by laboratory proof. Fourthly, is the barrier of individualism;

this view asserts that every individual is a free agent to

decide on its destiny. The final barrier, materialism, focuses

on acquiring objects that can be converted into cash or

other worldly artifacts.

The Bible has many responses to all of these barriers

and it echoes a warning to persons who choose to avoid

the responsibility of getting to know God. It is replete with

statements, parables, and examples for use in getting to know

God. To the individualist, it says "study to show thyself

approved unto God a workman that need not be ashamed of

his work. To the atheist, is warns "a fool has said in his heart

that there is no God. To the scientists, it shows that

God is the source of creation including humankind. To the

individualist, it pleads "seek ye first the kingdom of the

Lord thy God...and to the materialist The Bible asks,

"What hath a man to profit if he gains the whole world and

loses his soul?"

The seriousness of these divine responses to the

isms as barriers in getting to know God leads to the next

dimension of the sermon which is - to specify some methods

for getting to know God. As background to the recommended

methods, brief attention will be focus on the thoughts and

actions of primitive man and the first philosopher. Primitive man,

while being highly superstitious, worshiped the Sun as his god.

He noted that it brought day and night, or light and darkness. From

that regularity, he reasoned that life and death was controlled by a

cosmic force. Accordingly, he adopted the practice of burying the

dead with the head in the West so that, if there should be a life after

death, it will come at sunrise and the deceased would rise facing the

rising sun. Centuries later, there arose a philosophical thinker named

Thales he was surrounded by water on a small island in the

Aegean Sea. Noting the fishes and other sea going

creatures, he concluded that humankind came from the

sea. Both Primitive man and Thales were curiously

incorrect, but in time God brought forth Prophets and

Apostles who would received and recorded His Word as they

were moved by the Spirit of God ( 2nd Peter 1:21 ). Saint

Paul, also, echoed the authenticity of this book, The

Bible, when he penned the book of Hebrews where he

stated, "Gods...spake in past times unto the fathers by

the prophets has in the last days given us the Son..."

( Heb. 1: 1-2 ) and later the scrolls and, finally, the Holy Bible.

That Sacred Book will undergird the second aspect

of the sermon which is - some biblical methods for getting

to know God. First, it is necessary to acceptance the

existence of God as was told unto Moses, "I am that I am"

( Ex 3:14 ). That assertion was repeated as God commenced

to give the Decalogues, or Ten Commandments. Therein

God said, "I am the Lord thy God..." ( Ex. 20:2 ). The reality

of God was also a concern within the disciples one of whom,

Philip, begged, " Lord, show us the Father..." and Jesus

replied, "...he that has me hath seen the Father..." ( Jo. 14:9)

Since we are living under the Dispensation of the Holy

Spirit, there is no physical Jesus to walk among us as a

mortal being, we must, therefore, rely solely on the Bible

for guidelines in Getting to Know God. Accordingly, the

focus will now shift to a few of the biblical teachings to

achieve this essential goal of knowing God. Some of the

basic teachings are: recognize that God is creator of

heaven and earth and without him was not anything made

that was made; the wages of sin is death, but the gift

God is eternal life; all have sinned and come short of the

glory of God; God so loved the world that He gave his only

begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not

perish, but have everlasting life; that if thou shall confess

with thou mouth the Lord Jesus and shalt believe in thy

heart that God raised him from the dead, that shall be

saved; he is a rewarded of them that diligently seek him;

and be thou faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown

of life.

Beloved, these selective verses provide the foundation

on which the serious person can begin to comprehend the

significance of the Bible in both getting to know God and

how to have a spiritual relationship with the Almighty God.

In addition to personal study and regular worship

participation, there are some other indicators that will greatly

facilitate the endeavor of Getting to Know God,

they include: the reality of creation as noted by the Psalmist -

"The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmaments

show his handiwork" ( Ps. 19:1 ); the poetic assertion of

Joyce Kilmer - "...poems are made by fools like me, but

only God can make a tree"; the song - How great Thou Art

is another source that supports the existence of God; and -

finally - you the hearers and/or readers of this sermon are

living proof for the existence of God for the Bible asserts

that it is He that has made us and not we ourselves.

So in conclusion, let us avoid logical schemes of

philosophy, the matric of science, the claims of cultists,

and glamour of high profile television evangelists in our

task in Getting to Know God and, instead, become more

familiar with the Bible, view the wonders of nature, and

never forget that life exists in your body.

In terms of applications, this sermon was entitled

Getting to Know God. It highlighted some inquisitive

aspects of human nature; it identified some human

efforts to acquire knowledge; it showed limitations in the

approaches and it submitted the Bible as the most

authoritative source for use in Getting to Know God.

Against this summation, the closing question becomes

what is to be gained from Getting to Know God? In

answer, there are three outcomes, namely: We will

receive Grace from God; we will receive salvation offered

by Jesus; and we will have the comfort of the Holy Spirit.

Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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