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Matthew 28
posted August 9, 2012

Revelation 13
posted August 16, 2012

GOD'S LOOKING GLASS November 15, 2009


Sermon of the Week for November 15, 2009

Ladies and Gentlemen, the Bible is God's mirror for the soul. If you open it up and look carefully you will see your own reflection. James told us that when he said, "For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like unto a man that beholdeth his natural face in a mirror: for he beholdeth himself, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.”

In the Proverbs it is said that all the ways of a man are right in his own eyes. And so it may be in the mirror of your imagination, you may view yourself as a perfect specimen, but God's Looking Glass is like those mirrors in the Amusement Park that distort your reflection. In God's mirror you could see the reflection of your self the way God looks at you. You might look like you are five feet wide and two feet tall with a gooby, gooby, expression on your face, or ten feet tall and as thin as a tooth pick.

According to James you can see your own reflection in the Bible and forget how you look. The Bible is God's Looking Glass. You have no idea what your soul looks like until you see yourself as you really are reflected in the mirror of God's word. So let us look at the human soul the way God sees us in God's Looking Glass, the Bible. We can often times see the reflection of ourselves in the lives of the characters in the Bible. So take a good look at yourself. I read of a missionary one time that gave a mirror to a chief of a jungle tribe. The chief had never seen a mirror, and when he saw his reflection in the mirror he broke the mirror. That chief was not like Narcissus of Greek mythology who when seeing his reflection in a pool, fell in love with himself. See if you can fall in love with yourself by seeing your reflection in the Bible, God’s mirror for the soul.

So take a good look at yourself in the mirror of the Word of God; it is like the three way mirrors in clothing stores; you can look into the mirror at your soul, and see yourself from every possible angle.  “Mirror, mirror, on the wall; who’s the fairest of them all?” Now some may look into the mirror and see their reflection in an incident in the life of David and Bathsheba.   


Look in God's Looking Glass at King David. And it came to pass at evening tide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon theroof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very fair to look upon. Now hold up the mirror of God's word. Do you see your own reflection as you watch a porno movie, or as you put a porno tape into the VCR, or look at a pornographic magazine? The accusing voice of Nathan, the prophet, to King David speaks also to you: “Thou art the man!”

In the fourth century there were people who thought the way to live above sin was to live the monastic life in seclusion apart from the opposite sex. The big trouble is you cannot get away from yourself. One Christian magazine recently tells of one monk tormented with lust and found the answer to controlling his thoughts was to jump into a briar patch. The main objection to that procedure is that a briar patch is not always handy; a better answer may be prayer.

 David’s sin was great but don't look upon it lightly. There was a terrible price he paid for his sins. Although he was forgiven the Lord's edict was that the sword shall not depart from thy house.

A son died in infancy, a daughter was raped by her half brother, who in turn was murdered by another half brother. Absalom rebelled against his father, and was slain. The proverb states, “The way of the transgressor is hard, and was fully understood by David.”  The Bible is the mirror for the soul.


Look again into the mirror for the soul and see the refection of Felix in Acts 24. Felix sent for Paul the prisoner to hear him concerning the faith in Christ Jesus. Felix came in with Drusilla, a woman who had been married to a small time king, and Felix persuaded her she could be better off with him. She was a daughter of the Herod who had cut off the head of James.

Now Felix wants to hear Paul concerning the faith in Christ Jesus. At the first of this chapter it is said that Felix had more excellent knowledge concerning The Way. He already knew much, and now Felix wants to hear more about Jesus. That is always commendable when a person wants to add more to his knowledge of Jesus than he already knew before.

Paul met the issue head on. He spoke of righteousness, self-control, and the judgment to come. Felix like a lot of people today was shocked when he heard that knowing more about Jesus had something to do with repentance from his sins, and the Judgment Day. Many are like Felix now; they like to hear about Jesus, they just don’t want to hear what Jesus said. Actually Jesus is the living Word. We cannot separate Jesus from what He said.

 When Felix heard the sermon he trembled. He was convicted, but not willing to give up his sin. He postponed salvation and told Paul, "Go thy way and when I have a more convenient time I will call thee again unto me." He called for Paul frequently and heard him, but he never trembled again. We will do what God wants us to do when He tells us, or we may never do it at all.

According to the preaching philosophy of the present day Paul should have preached like Isaiah said of the false prophets, speak unto us smooth things. Preaching smooth things is to preach the truth


in such a way that every one feels inspired no one is convicted of sin.

Tomorrow he promised his conscience - Tomorrow I mean to believe - Tomorrow I will think as I ought to think - Tomorrow my Savior receive - Tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow, thus day after day it went on - Tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow till youth like a vision was gone - Till age and his passions had written this message of fate on his brow - And forth from the shadows came death with the pitiless syllable NOW!

 Every Person who has heard the gospel of Christ and waited for a convenient season needs to look at his own reflection in this account of another rejecter of Christ in God's mirror for the soul.


Now take a look in God's mirror for the soul at Ananias and Sapphira in Acts five. These two sold a possession and brought a certain part and gave it to the Apostles as though it was the full amount. They did not have to sell the land, after it was sold


they did not have to give it, but they gave a part as though it was the full amount. They were looking for the approval of men rather than the approval of God.

When Peter asked them about it, they dropped dead. Looking at these two in God's Looking Glass, many of us will see our own reflection. I have heard many say through the years, I am giving all I can. Only God is qualified to say if we are lying to the Holy Spirit. The fact that many of us do not drop dead as we put our contribution in the offering plate, does not mean that God has changed His mind about lying to the Holy Spirit.


Take another look in God's Looking Glass at the Evangelist Philip. Philip was called by an Angel to arise and go toward the south on the road that goeth down from Jerusalem to Gaza. Philip arose and went and found the treasurer of Ethiopia riding in a chariot and heard him reading from the Prophet Isaiah. And the Spirit said unto Philip, “Go near and join thyself to this chariot.” Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet. Philip asked him if he understood what he was reading. The man said, “How can I except some man should guide me?” He besought Philip to come up and sit with him. The passage the Ethiopian was reading was in regards to the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ.

 Then Philip opened his mouth and preached unto him Jesus. Philip was different from many today. Philip opened his mouth. The church today opens its mouth to every thing, and many things except to say anything about Jesus. Many open their mouths to gossip, to criticize, for politics, sports, entertainment, but never a word about salvation.

 Today the church is the church of the closed mouth. It took nerve for Philip to open his mouth. A short time before this Stephen had opened his mouth and was stoned to death. If Stephen had kept his mouth shut he would not have been stoned, and if he had kept his mouth shut he would not have seen the heaven opened and Jesus standing at the right hand of God.

I have no idea, what many will miss out on today, who keep their mouth shut. Today many would have told Philip it is all right to be a Christian, but keep your faith to yourself and keep your mouth shut.

After the sermon the man said, "Behold here is water what doth hinder me from being baptized?" There is not a word about baptism in the text that Philip used. All we know is that Philip preached unto him Jesus, and the text he used was the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, but on the basis of what he heard, he asked the question as to what hindered him from being baptized. Evidently you cannot preach Jesus without preaching the death, burial, resurrection of Jesus, and the respond to the message of the believer was to be baptized. The act of baptism was accomplished by going down into the water, and coming up out of the water.

 As you look into God's Looking Glass at Philip preaching this sermon, do you see your reflection following Jesus, or is the image blurred, and you see yourself following the word of the preacher rather than the word of God.


Let us take one more look in God's Looking glass and look at the reflection of the former days of our lives. In 2nd Samuel 23:14-17, King David had taken the city of Jebus from now on called Jerusalem. The Philistines had control of Bethlehem. Bethlehem was where David lived as a boy. David longed and said, "Oh that one would give me drink of water of the well of Bethlehem that is by the gate." Perhaps many of us long for a drink from the old well of days gone by.

There were three of his captains who heard him thinking out loud and broke through the Philistine lines and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem that is by the gate and brought it to David. David was so over come by their devotion that he symbolized the water as their life-blood. And poured it out on the ground as an offering to God.

This was no small sacrifice. It was an offering to God that could not be taken back. The offering of our lives in service to the King of Kings is the same; it should never be taken back. It was a great sacrifice also because it was an offering of great value. It is easy to give God something we don't need any way. People offer a sick body to the Lord. “Lord, get me through this operation and I will serve you better.”  But if all goes well, I don't need God.

Listen to the words of David again, "Oh that someone would give me a drink of water of the well of Bethlehem that is by the gate." He remembered the old days as a keeper of his father’s sheep. He longed to go back even though he was now king, to the way it was when he was a boy.

That statement of David as he compared the water of the three brave men, and likened it to their blood as a sacrifice for him, is interesting to us, as we are aware that David was certainly aware the Messiah would be born at Bethlehem; the one who is often referred to as the Son of David.

The paternal grandparents of David were Boaz and Ruth. On the day Boaz and Ruth were married beginning at Ruth 4:11 “And all the people were in the gate, and the elders, said, we are witnesses. The Lord make the woman that is come into thy house be like Rachel and Leah, which two did build the house of Israel: and do thou worthily and be famous in Bethlehem; then Boaz begat Obed, and Obed begat Jesse, and Jesse begat David.” 

In Psalms 22:16 David said they pierced my hands and my feet as he gave a description of the crucifixion. If David refrained from drinking the water as he thought of it as the blood of those men. How much more should we consider the blood of the Messiah of greatest value that was poured out for us at Calvary’s cross, and we like David long for a drink from the cup, week by week; as we gather around the Lord’s Table, and remember his words, “This do in remembrance of me.”       

 Although like David we cannot go back and drink from the old well of Bethlehem that is by the gate, it will always be enshrined in our memory; but it would be a nice place to visit for a week. I would like to go back and attend the Church services, and visit with most of a congregation now crossed over the river, and hopefully hear the kind of preaching I heard in the old days when I drank from the old well at Bethlehem that is by the gate.

If I could go back to the old well that is by the gate in the spring when I graduated from Bible College, and the majority of young men left school to be pulpit preachers; what refreshment it would be to drink water from the old well at Bethlehem that is by the Gate. These lines from a familiar poem expressed it well for us all who long for a drink from the old well of Bethlehem that is by the gate.

Backward, turn backward time in thy flight;

Make me a child again just for tonight.

And so along with David, I wonder if someone will break through the Philistine lines of conformity; the lines of faith  without repentance and obedience; the lines of everybody is right no matter what you believe; and bring me a drink from that well at Pentecost, the day when the Church began. Let me hear again the way it was when penitent believers were told to repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and the reception of the Holy Spirit. And so I look into God's mirror for the soul, and see the reflection of an old man who longs to go back, and once again drink of the water of the well of Bethlehem that is by the gate.