What I’m Saying Tonight
Today marks the start of Outreach Week at TMC. This evening, I’ve been asked to preach for a church high school youth group. This is my first full-length sermon, so pray for me! I’ll be preaching out of Numbers 23:19-24. Here’s the conclusion of the sermon. It will be a little choppy, because you don’t have the context of the first twenty-five minutes of sermon.
Having grown up in the church, I am really concerned that kids think about their faith. They don’t realize that God has no grandchildren. I can easily fill up both hands with friends who have walked away from the church and the gospel after graduating high school. I know how easy it is to become a parrot, who speaks what he hears and never believes what he says. The Lord looks at the heart, not the words. And this means all my goods words avail me nothing if my heart does not love the Lord. I praise God that my parents instilled into me from an early age that Jesus doesn’t love me just because He loves them. The point of my sermon can be summed up as this: Are you a parrot? Or are you a child of God?
ARE YOU A PARROT?
C. It’s Matter of Life and Death
It is absolutely critical to realize something: Balaam was not a believer. I cannot stress this enough. Look at what Balaam said about God. And then understand that he was not a believer.
Balaam heard the words of God. He spoke the words of God. He evangelized for God. And Balaam is in hell.
He is proof that it is entirely possible to agree with the words of God—what we would call the Bible—and never actually believe it.
I grew up in church. I’ve attended Sunday morning services, Sunday evening services, Wednesday prayer services, AWANA, youth group. And you know what; none of it justifies me before the Lord. Attending church does not mean believing Jesus.
Let me ask you a question: Have you come to the place where you realized that you can’t save yourself? Have you said, “Jesus, I am a sinner, please come and be Lord of my life”? Have you surrendered your life to Christ fully?
Balaam was unwilling to surrender his life to Christ. Remember what Peter said in 2 Peter 2: 15? Balaam “loved the wages of unrighteousness.” Balaam was unwilling to humble himself before the Lord and admit he needed to obey God.
Jesus warned us against following the foolishness of Balaam. In Matthew 6:20 He says But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Another famous verse, I know. But remember—God does not lie. Balaam refused to submit himself to the very words he was speaking. He didn’t believe the words. He didn’t trust the words. In the end, Balaam understood the words he spoke. Remember how we said God was on the warpath and He would win? Balaam joined the losing side, and now is suffering for that decision. Balaam stored up for himself treasures on this earth, and they availed him nothing.
Unlike Balaam, we are still alive today. We still have the opportunity to trust Jesus. Guys, if you haven’t trusted the Lord, you need to. Learn from a man who didn’t. Balaam wishes right now he had truly listened to what he was saying. If you don’t know Jesus Christ personally; if you haven’t admitted your need for Him; if you don’t have a desire to obey Him and His Word—please, learn from the foolishness of Balaam.