OceanSide church of Christ
|Previous||Return to Sermons||Next|
GOD IS LOOKING FOR YOU
Victor M. Eskew
A. Have you ever been told that someone is looking for you? A spouse, a child, a close friend?
B. Have you ever known someone was looking for you, but you knew that you were not going to be able to see them?
1. It may have been a loved one upon a death bed.
2. It may have been a family at a funeral.
3. It may have been a soldier that was deployed and knew that his deployment was extended for several more months.
C. When individuals are looking for us, we are intrigued by that. We long to find them as quickly as possible and speak with them.
D. When we know another is looking for us, but we cannot be there, we usually hurt. We know the sadness, the disappointment, and the discouragement that comes because we are not there.
E. Take all of these thoughts and apply them to this sermon title: “God Is Looking for You.”
I. GOD IS LOOKING FOR THOSE WHO ARE LOST
A. The word “lost” is not used many times in our Bibles.
1. The word comes from a Greek word that means “to destroy fully, to perish.”
2. The lost, therefore, are all those who are heading for eternal condemna-tion.
B. God, however, does not want this end to come to man. He yearns for man’s salvation (I Tim. 2:3-4).
For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior; who will have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
1. Through His Son, He sought to redeem fallen man (II Cor. 5:19).
To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them…
2. Jesus’ death did all that was necessary to satisfy the demands of divine law on man’s behalf.
a. The sentence was death (Ezek. 18:20).
b. Jesus satisfied the sentence of death.
3. God has given only a few requirements to man in order for him to appropriate salvation (James 1:18).
Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
C. Having done all of this, guess what the Father is doing now? He is waiting for man to respond to His proffer of grace.
1. God has done all that He will do for the lost.
2. Now it is up to the last to respond to God (Acts 2:40).
And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
3. When the lost moves toward God, He will immediately move toward man (James 4:7-8).
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.
II. GOOD IS LOOKING FOR MAN IN WORSHIP
A. Man, and especially the saved, has so much for which to be thankful unto God. As the old hymn says: “He blesses and blesses again.”
B. The result of His blessings should be our extreme gratitude unto Him.
1. We should long to bow before Him and give thanks for His care and bounty to us.
2. Psalm 100
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands. Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing. Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that made us, and not we ourselves, we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.
C. Yes, when the saints meet to worship God, He is looking for you. This is plainly revealed in the account of the healing of the ten lepers.
1. Ten lepers were cleanse of their leprosy (Luke 17:14).
2. One returned to express his thanksgiving to Jesus (Luke 17:15-16).
And one of them when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, and fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a leper.
3. Now, listen to Jesus’ response (Luke 17:17-18).
And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine? There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger.
a. Jesus was looking for the praise of the nine.
b. What did he see? “There are not found that returned to give glory to God.”
III. GOD IS LOOKING FOR HIS CHILDREN IN PRAYER
A. Again, the psalmist understood this (Ps. 145:18-19).
The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.
B. In fact, He does not want us to call once or twice upon Him in prayer. He wants us to come over and over and over again.
1. This truth is seen in two of Jesus’ parables.
a. The parable of the friend at midnight (Luke 11:5-13).
b. The parable of the unjust judge (Luke 18:1-18).
2. Both parables teach the concept of importunity.
a. Importunity: shamelessness, boldness, nerve, gall
b. It is that constant coming and making request of God that is meant. We are bold and persistent. Those who hear us might say: “He really has a lot of gall” (Ex., Abraham’s appeal to God on behalf of Sodom and Gomorrah, Gen. 18:23-32).
C. Think about this. God tells us to come. In fact, He says to keep on coming. NOTE: He is looking for us to come.
1. Proverbs 15:9
The Lord is far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous.
2. I Pete 3:12
For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.
IV. GOD IS LOOKING FOR HIS CHILDREN WHO STRAY
A. It is the responsibility of the child of God to keep himself in the path of right-eousness.
1. Psalm 116:9
I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living.
2. Psalm 119:1
Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord.
B. It is possible, however, for a child of God to stray.
1. I Corinthians 10:12, warns us to take heed lest he fall.
2. Paul tells us that we can be overtaken in a fault in Galatians 6:1.
3. In his second letter to the Thessalonians, Paul reveals that a Christian can “walk disorderly” (II Thess. 3:6).
4. Hebrews 3:12 states: Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
5. James 5:19 clearly points out that any of us can err from the truth.
6. We can also be entangled again in the world and overcome (II Pet. 2:20-22).
C. When we go astray, the Father is looking for us to return. This lesson is manifested in the parable of the Prodigal Son.
1. The younger son demanded his inheritance from his father (Luke 15:12).
2. He departed into a far country and wasted his substance on riotous living (Luke 15:13).
3. While there, he came to himself, repented, and returned to his father’s house (Luke 15:17-19).
4. It is at this point that we learn something about the son’s father (Luke 15:20).
And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.
a. The father saw him when he was a great way off.
b. It appears the father had been looking for his son to return.
c. The father of this story is our heavenly Father. He yearns and waits for our return. His eyes are constantly upon the road hoping to see us making our way back to Him.
5. Keep these thoughts in mind as we consider II Peter 3:9.
The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that al should come to repen-tance.
A. A deist is a person who believes that God created the world, and, then, removed Himself from its functioning.
B. Does the God we have presented in this lesson appear to be the God of the deist? Not at all. He is involved in our lives. He is constantly looking for us to come to Him.
1. In conversion
2. In worship
3. In prayer
4. In repentance when we stray
C. The only question that remains is: “Will we disappoint our heavenly Father?”
1. Does God sit upon His throne wondering where you are?
2. Does He say about you what He said of Israel in the long ago? (Jer. 2:32).
Can a main forget her ornaments, or a bride her attire? Yet my people have forgotten me days without number.