Summary of sermon by Erlo Stegen, 29 Jun 2014
(Before the service a man helped by the Concerned Community, Wayne, gave his testimony. He grew up in a privileged family in Kimberley. Both his parents were qualified teachers. His mother was a Christian, but his father was an alcoholic. At a young age he gave his life to the Lord Jesus. But at age 6 he was introduced to pornography and it controlled him. Later he started smoking, using drugs and stealing, even from the church money. He was caught and had to pay it back. He also started using prescription drugs by lying to the docters and getting it prescribed. He started using all manner of drugs and lived sexually immoral. He was booked into a rehab centre but the day he was released he used drugs again and went back to his old lifestyle. He lost all will to live and on a number of occasions tried to take his own life. Recently his mother showed him a letter from the Concerned Community and he arrived at KwaSizabantu mission on 24 December 2014. Here he could confess his sins and renewed his covenant with the Lord, and found complete deliverance from his drug addiction and sexually immoral lifestyle. God spoke to him from the following verse and he was helped as he called upon the Lord.
3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.)
11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
Let’s look at the life of king Solomon.
God had marvelous plans for Solomon. We read how God displayed His great love for Solomon. Even at his birth God gave him the name Jedidiah, meaning loved of the Lord. Solomon also had older brothers, but God had chosen him to be king. Solomon also had many amazing experiences with the Lord. He built God’s house, the temple of the Lord and God revealed Himself to him by fire and in dreams. After Solomon prayed God answered him by fire from heaven and God’s glory filled the temple. Even David, Solomon’s father, was forbidden by God to build the temple. But Solomon was given the honour. He was very wise and had much knowledge, more than anyone else. He wrote more than 3000 proverbs and many songs. It was evident that God was with him and loved him greatly.
But after all this something crept into his life, his weakness for women.
Solomon, this hero of heroes, destroyed himself through unbridled lust. He would see a woman and wanted her.
God had so many wonderful plans for him, but he threw it all away by giving way to his lust. This man so greatly loved of God was brought down by sexual immorality.
God had sent the prophet to his parents to give him that amazing name, Jedidiah (2Sam 12:25). But later we read that God’s anger was greatly aroused against him because of his sexual looseness and allowing women to lead him astray (1Kings 11:1-10). And he was destroyed and his great kingdom divided and destroyed. He allowed his wives to show him how to worship their gods and he burned incense to their gods. His heart fell away from God and instead clung to these women in love.
No longer did he love the Lord like David his father who clung to the Lord through thick and thin.
Some Bible commentators says he repented at the end while others say he never repented, but it’s not totally clear either way.
God does have a plan for you. Be careful that nobody robs you of that and that you don’t miss it. Cling to it and don’t count it lightly.
A certain man from Scotland, was a thief from his youth. From his childhood that was his life. As he grew up it became bigger and bigger until he stole things of great value. At that time there were no cars. They traveled by horse. He started stealing horses. He even enjoyed it. He was in and out of prison because of this. He couldn’t control himself, when he saw a beautiful horse he just had to have it. He had regrets but only because he got caught.
He was headed for hell. He would promise he would never do it again but soon he would do it again. He would seem to repent but soon he would be back in the same thing again. All his vows came to naught. Finally he was sentenced to hard labour. He had to work in a coal mine. One day there was a mine collapse and many of them were trapped inside.
Some tried to rescue them to see if any were alive. They found this horse thief greatly injured and he was pronounced dead and put in a coffin. Two prisoners carried his coffin. As they walked the coffin slipped and fell. Then they heard a noise inside the coffin. The prisoners ran for their lives and told others. When they opened the coffin, to their amazement he was awake. They took him out and he just begged for more and more water. His thirst couldn’t be quenched. For three months he wouldn’t say a word about his experience. Then only he told others that he experienced being led into hell by an angel. He saw the flames of hell and then God spoke to him. He saw the glory of heaven afar off. It was inexpressible, God and the angels dressed in white robes with crowns on their heads and shining faces. God then spoke to him and said to him that the glory he saw was meant for him, but he lost it because of his evil ways. God didn’t prepare him for hell but for heaven. He couldn’t enter heaven with his sin. He couldn’t describe the pain he felt when God spoke those words to him.
So too God did not prepare hell for you, but heaven. But you cannot enter heaven with your sin. God’s thoughts for you are not evil thoughts but good thoughts. But you must part from sin.
This horse thief then cried for forgiveness. He saw his whole life of thieving and sexual immorality before him. And God showed him mercy and sent him back, and that was the time when the coffin fell. He recovered and when he was well again, he parted from his evil friends and his thieving ways.
It’s a fearful thing to be separate from God for eternity, because we refused his will for our life and went our own way and did things our way.
You who were created for heaven, what do you choose? Have you confessed and parted from your sin, that your life from henceforth be fully for God and His will for your life?
Choir songs: Kwasizabantu Choir 1st song:
Choir songs: Kwasizabantu Choir 2nd song:
Choir songs: Kwasizabantu Choir 3rd song: