London Lee Preaches on Preparation for Christ's Coming
The church service on February 15, 2014 in the Laurelbrook Seventh-day Adventist Church began with an introit by Beth Brandt. Then Rodney Herra welcomed everyone and had the announcements. There will be a church business meeting on Monday at 7:00 p.m. The meeting will deal with making the church entrance friendlier to wheelchair people. Brenda Herra will be assuming the job of head deaconess since the previous person resigned. Keep in prayer the decision next Sunday about Laurelbrook’s presidency.
London Lee had the opening prayer. The congregation sang “Nearer, Still Nearer”. Rodney Herra then had the Morning Prayer, the congregation responded with “Hear Our Prayer, O Lord”, and Ed Sonnenthal and Matthew (sophomore) collected the church offerings. Rodney Herra then had a prayer for the offering. Rodney Herra then had prayer for Maudie Westfall’s mother; her mother’s heart had stopped beating three times.
Trinity (9th grader) told the children a story about children who had to find homes for their pets. Finally, with God’s help, they did.
Rodney Herra then read 1 Samuel 7:3 And Samuel spake unto all the house of Israel, saying, If ye do return unto the LORD with all your hearts, then put away the strange gods and Ashtaroth from among you, and prepare your hearts unto the LORD, and serve him only: and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.
London Lee then finished his sermon “Prepare to Meet Thy God” that he had begun during the Sabbath School program. The Laurelbrook Choir then sang. The congregation then sang “I Surrender All”, and London Lee closed the meeting with prayer.
Audio recording of Part 1 (Sabbath School program time)
Audio recording of Part 2 (church finale)
Personnel Other Than Students:
Beth Brandt – wife of Clayton Brandt, who deals with Laurelbrook’s heavy equipment
Ed Sonnenthal – local church deacon / campus electrician
London Lee – Laurelbrook campus chaplain
Rodney Herra – head church deacon / works for nearby Majestic Stone Company
A few notes on London Lee’s conclusion of the sermon “Prepare to Meet Thy God”:
- God is constantly trying to get His people to come back to Him.
- We are living in the hour of God’s Judgment. Nearly all unprepared are to go through the Judgment and face the onslaught of Satan.
- The Israelites had to prepare for the Day of Atonement just like the decade before October 22, 1844 when people started to prepare for that day.
- Ezra 7:10 For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the LORD, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.
- Ezra had been called out of Babylon to rebuild the Temple; we are rebuilding a spiritual Temple by consecrating our hearts to God by reading the Bible, obeying His Word, and surrendering ourselves to God.
- When God calls His people, His people are to turn their hearts and the hearts of their children to God.
- Because of rebellion, God has scattered His people all over the world.
- What does it mean to give your whole heart?
- Deuteronomy 5:6 I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.
- When we return to God, we must be confident that He knows best.
- Jeremiah 29:13
- Joel 2:12 Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning.
- Why did people prostrate themselves before God? Because He was so much more holy than they.
- God then commented that there were strange gods in the nation.
- Genesis 35:2-4 2 Then Jacob said unto his household, and to all that were with him, Put away the strange gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments: 3 And let us arise, and go up to Beth-el; and I will make there an altar unto God, who answered me in the day of my distress, and was with me in the way which I went. 4 And they gave unto Jacob all the strange gods which were in their hand, and all their earrings which were in their ears; and Jacob hid them under the oak which was by Shechem.
- After they got rid of their strange gods, then they could connect with God.
- Ezekiel 14:1-5 1 Then came certain of the elders of Israel unto me, and sat before me. 2 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, 3 Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them? 4 Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet; I the LORD will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols; 5 That I may take the house of Israel in their own heart, because they are all estranged from me through their idols.
- Proverbs 16:1-9 1 The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the LORD. 2 All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits. 3 Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established. 4 The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil. 5 Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished. 6 By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil. 7 When a man's ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him. 8 Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues without right. 9 A man's heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.
- The focus is the proud heart.
- Ellen White says that all who are being trained by God need a quiet time and place for communion with God.
- We must serve God only.
- 2 Kings 23:3-14 3 ¶ And the king stood by a pillar, and made a covenant before the LORD, to walk after the LORD, and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes with all their heart and all their soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book. And all the people stood to the covenant. 4 And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest, and the priests of the second order, and the keepers of the door, to bring forth out of the temple of the LORD all the vessels that were made for Baal, and for the grove, and for all the host of heaven: and he burned them without Jerusalem in the fields of Kidron, and carried the ashes of them unto Beth-el. 5 And he put down the idolatrous priests, whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in the cities of Judah, and in the places round about Jerusalem; them also that burned incense unto Baal, to the sun, and to the moon, and to the planets, and to all the host of heaven. 6 And he brought out the grove from the house of the LORD, without Jerusalem, unto the brook Kidron, and burned it at the brook Kidron, and stamped it small to powder, and cast the powder thereof upon the graves of the children of the people. 7 And he brake down the houses of the sodomites, that were by the house of the LORD, where the women wove hangings for the grove. 8 And he brought all the priests out of the cities of Judah, and defiled the high places where the priests had burned incense, from Geba to Beer-sheba, and brake down the high places of the gates that were in the entering in of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were on a man's left hand at the gate of the city. 9 Nevertheless the priests of the high places came not up to the altar of the LORD in Jerusalem, but they did eat of the unleavened bread among their brethren. 10 And he defiled Topheth, which is in the valley of the children of Hinnom, that no man might make his son or his daughter to pass through the fire to Molech. 11 And he took away the horses that the kings of Judah had given to the sun, at the entering in of the house of the LORD, by the chamber of Nathan-melech the chamberlain, which was in the suburbs, and burned the chariots of the sun with fire. 12 And the altars that were on the top of the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and the altars which Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the LORD, did the king beat down, and brake them down from thence, and cast the dust of them into the brook Kidron. 13 And the high places that were before Jerusalem, which were on the right hand of the mount of corruption, which Solomon the king of Israel had builded for Ashtoreth the abomination of the Zidonians, and for Chemosh the abomination of the Moabites, and for Milcom the abomination of the children of Ammon, did the king defile. 14 And he brake in pieces the images, and cut down the groves, and filled their places with the bones of men.
- Matthew 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
- Ellen White says we often want to do right but often do wrong. We must yield ourselves entirely to God.
- You will never receive the righteousness of Christ while examining other people.
- Satan is the accuser of the brethren.
- Hatred of sin is vital to full salvation. We must learn to hate sin as much as we formerly loved it.
- God is going to cleanse His people of all sin and sinners. He doesn’t force you, but you have a choice between sin and righteousness.
- How much do you hate sin and self? How many of you would like to give yourselves to God and remove all strange gods and serve God only?
- No person can empty himself/herself of sin. There is too much connection between the sin in our hearts and the temptations that come to us.
- Jacob tried to fight the battles against sin and self by himself.
- God says we cannot save ourselves.
- John 2:13-17 13 ¶ And the Jews' passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, 14 And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: 15 And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers' money, and overthrew the tables; 16 And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father's house an house of merchandise. 17 And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.
- The demons tremble when we let God direct our lives.
- Jesus told the dealers in the Temple not to make the Temple a house of merchandise.
- Ezekiel 28:12-14 12 Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. 13 Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created. 14 Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.
- Ezekiel 28:15-16 15 Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. 16 By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.
- On the Day of Atonement, an unrepentant sinner was put out of the camp.
- Ezekiel 28:17-18 17 Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee. 18 Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.
- Lucifer set himself up in place of God and defiled many of the angels. Self became the guiding principles of their lives.
- Psalm 10:4 The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.
- A wicked person thinks only about themselves. Lucifer was the first sanctuary that was defiled.
- 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
- God wants to cleanse our heart temples. The Temple was to be a symbol of this cleansing.
- Are you yielding your heart as a temple for God? But you cannot cleanse your heart yourself.
- Each of us has issues dealing with sin. We must ask God to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
- Malachi 3:1-3 1 Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts. 2 But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' sope: 3 And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness.
- God’s presence will cleanse our hearts, but first we must give Him the deed to every part of our lives.
- A life with Christ should be a life of strength and peace, not looking to others.
- When God’s character is perfectly reproduced in His people, He will come again to get His own.
- Isaiah 30:18 And therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him.
- Will you be ready when Christ comes?