Learning from History

Learning from History

Our world society is not learning from history, for it always seems to repeat the same mistakes over and over again, particularly when it comes to our violent and ungodly way of life.

Learning from History

Lamb of God

A Sermon Delivered to
The Compassion Internet Church

18 August 2013

Frank L. Hoffman, Pastor

Scripture References:

Psalm 71:1-6
Luke 13:10-17
Hebrews 12:18-29

Our world society is not learning from history, for it always seems to repeat the same mistakes over and over again, particularly when it comes to our violent and ungodly way of life.

The Bible speaks of many problems and situations from thousands of years ago that may or may not be of interest to people today; but for us, the concepts expressed by the writers can and should be applied today.

This is learning from history!

This is the reason we should be studying Biblical passages such as the ones set before us today.

As an example, let’s take a look at Psalm 71:1-6, where the writer (about 3,000 years ago) wrote about someone trying to harm him and seeks the Lord to rescue him.

1. In Thee, O LORD, I have taken refuge;
Let me never be ashamed.

2. In Thy righteousness deliver me, and rescue me;
Incline Thine ear to me, and save me.

3. Be Thou to me a rock of habitation, to which I may continually come;
Thou hast given commandment to save me,
For Thou art my rock and my fortress.

So far, this knowledge and wisdom is just as sound today as it was some 3,000 years ago.

We should always praise the Lord for just being with us in the presence of the Holy Spirit, for He is always there to listen to us and help; and praise helps us stay close to God.

This is taking refuge in the Lord. It is also learning from history.

4. Rescue me, O my God, out of the hand of the wicked,
Out of the grasp of the wrongdoer and ruthless man,

We hear from sensitive, loving, compassionate, and peacemaking people all the time who love animals and don’t eat them, and most of them tell us that they are, or have been made to feel, alienated from the church community because of the hardness of heart toward animals they have encountered from their pastor and/or church members.

In our opinion, such churches are the wrongdoers, and such pastors are the ruthless men, for they have set up the corrupt ways of the world before God; but we can and should be different.

5. For Thou art my hope;
O Lord GOD, Thou art my confidence from my youth.

6. By Thee I have been sustained from my birth;
Thou art He who took me from my mother’s womb;
My praise is continually of Thee.
NASB

Many of these people had the Lord sustain them from the evil around them, but He should not have to be doing this, because the churches, or all people, should have been learning from history and eliminating all these kinds of strife.

We are to be the peacemaking children of God who free creation from its present corruption.

We should not be continuing to corrupt the earth with all its violence, suffering, and bloodshed.

Such things are against God’s heavenly will.

As a guide to the rest of the world, the churches should be setting the example of living in God’s heavenly will; they should not be living in the ways of this corrupted world.

We should not continue our past mistakes; we should be learning from history.

With these things in mind, let’s jump ahead in Biblical time to Luke 13:10-17, and see how to apply these truths in other situations.

10. And He [Jesus] was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath.

11. And behold, there was a woman who for eighteen years had had a sickness caused by a spirit; and she was bent double, and could not straighten up at all.

12. And when Jesus saw her, He called her over and said to her, “Woman, you are freed from your sickness.”

13. And He laid His hands upon her; and immediately she was made erect again, and began glorifying God.

This is the way it should be for every living being upon the earth, whether human or other animal.

Unfortunately, there always seem to be some hard of heart people who stand in the way of living in the heavenly will of God.

14. And the synagogue official, indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, began saying to the multitude in response, “There are six days in which work should be done; therefore come during them and get healed, and not on the Sabbath day.”

15. But the Lord answered him and said, “You hypocrites, does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the stall, and lead him away to water him?

16. “And this woman, a daughter of Abraham as she is, whom Satan has bound for eighteen long years, should she not have been released from this bond on the Sabbath day?”

17. And as He said this, all His opponents were being humiliated; and the entire multitude was rejoicing over all the glorious things being done by Him.
NASB

Luke used this account of Jesus healing the woman because it shows the way we should be living, at least in our relationship with  our fellow human beings, but Jesus took it much further by using compassion to animals as an example of why we should have compassion on our fellow humans.

In essence, Jesus is putting compassion for animals before compassion for humans, for it is the basis of God’s lovingkindness; and, it is learning from history.

The example of leading animals out of their stalls was not only done on the Sabbath, but every day of the week.

But today the vast majority of animals never experience even this limited amount of compassion.

Today, animals are kept in indoor and outdoor cages on factory farms, fur farms, and in laboratories for their entire lives, and only released to face torture and death.

This is following the ways of the devil and not God.

The devil cripples and confines; God heals and releases.

These are the kinds of things we should be learning from history.

As we look at Hebrews 12:18-29, we see that with a heavenly perspective we leave the problems of the past behind, which is the best way of learning from history.

18. For you have not come to a mountain that may be touched and to a blazing fire, and to darkness and gloom and whirlwind,

19. and to the blast of a trumpet and the sound of words which sound was such that those who heard begged that no further word should be spoken to them.

20. For they could not bear the command, “If even a beast touches the mountain, it will be stoned.”

21. And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, “I am full of fear and trembling.”

This is what happened to the Israelites in the wilderness after the exodus from Egypt.

This is from the past.

Now we are to look with a heavenly vision in the will of God.

22. But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels,

23. to the general assembly and church of the first-born who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of righteous men made perfect,

One of the things we should have been learning from history is that we can never obtain this perfection in the world.

We can only become true children of God in the perfection of His heavenly will.

24. and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel.

Remember that the shed blood of Abel, who was murdered by his brother, cried out to God from the ground.

This is something that can only happen in the spiritual realm.

25. See to it that you do not refuse Him who is speaking. For if those did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less shall we escape who turn away from Him who warns from heaven.

This is also learning from history, for the corrupted earthly ways only separate us from the Lord our God.

26. And His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heaven.”

27. And this expression, “Yet once more,” denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, in order that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.

What remains are the things of heaven, which cannot be shaken.

28. Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe;

29. for our God is a consuming fire.
NASB

It is this consuming fire of God that burns up all the demonic ways of this world, and ushers in the kingdom of heaven.

And as Jesus taught us to pray, we are to pray for God’s heavenly will to be done on earth as it is in heaven, which means that we can and should have the power of the kingdom of heaven on earth in the here and now, even if only in our own sphere of influence.

By not eating, wearing, or using anything that is the product of this atrocious way of life, we can end all of the pain, suffering and bloodshed that are inflicted upon the animals by our fellow human beings.

This helps bring the kingdom of God around us and to the world we influence.

This is learning from history!

Amen.

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