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Sunday, July 31, 2011 pm                    Sermons in Song

SERMONS IN SONG
“You Never Mentioned Him to Me”, #92

 Tonight we want to examine another song that we sing occasionally.  This one was written by James Rowe, a prolific song writer whose writings were  put to music by many different composers.  His songs that we sing include: Love lifted Me, Home of the Soul, He’s My King, “I Walk with the King”, “Looking to Thee” “After the Midnight” and many others.

This song is interesting because it paints a picture before the judgment seat of God.  There is no scripture that says what this song teaches will actually happen on that day.  AND WE KNOW THAT!   But imagine if it did happen?  Whether or not such a scene will actually unfold, the message is a challenge to each of us as we move through this life.  Because the concept that the souls of those around us ought to weigh heavy on our hearts IS found within scripture. Do we truly think about others as we ought to?  This song is designed to remind of that need and to do something about it.

There is no story behind this song, just a message with which we can “teach and admonish one another”  (Col. 3:16).  Let us notice the message of this song.

 I.                    Vs. 1 – A reminder of judgment

a.        When in the better land before the bar we stand – This is a description of judgment.

                                                   i.      The idea of the bar is standing before a judge who is about to pronounce ruling.

                                                  ii.      The coming judgment is very real – Act. 17:30-31

                                                iii.      It will be a great day – a bright day for some – and a sad day for others.

                                                iv.      We will ALL stand before the judgment seat -  2 Cor 5:9-10, “Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.”
Romans 14:10-12 says that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess. WE shall each give an accounting for our lives.

b.       How deeply grieved our souls may be –

                                                   i.      The souls of our friends, loved ones, our neighbors and even our enemies ought to be a source of concern to us.  It ought to grieve us that souls will be lost – especially when we consider how terrible their eternal destiny will be.

                                                  ii.      It is a foregone conclusion that most will reject the truth.  Jesus said twice, “many are called, but few are chosen” (Matt. 20:16, 22:14).
The way to destruction is described as broad and heavily traveled (Matt. 7:13-14)

                                                iii.      But not all will be lost.  There are honest souls that are searching for the truth.  Men like Cornelius and the Ethiopian Eunuch.  Others have honest hearts and will receive the truth when they hear it – like the Philippian jailer and Lydia, the Samaritan woman and disciples of John in Ephesus who when they heard the truth changed, etc.

                                                iv.      Our task is to find that one lost soul.  Do we see the urgency in reaching them? 2 Cor. 5:11 says, “Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men.”
Col 1:28-29, “Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus. To this end I also labor, striving according to His working which works in me mightily.”

c.        If any lost one there should cry in deep despair, ‘You never mentioned Him to me.’

                                                   i.      How truly sad it would be if someone that you or I had a real chance to teach and we neglected that opportunity.

                                                  ii.      In Acts 20:26-27, Paul was speaking to the Ephesian elders on his way to Jerusalem.  Among the things he told them was this, “Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all men.  For I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God.”

                                                iii.      Paul became all things to all men that he might by all means save some  (1 Cor. 9:22)

 II.                    Vs. 2 – Let us spread the word. 

a.        O let us spread the word wherever it may be heard

                                                   i.      It is a command that we strive to seek the lost.   It is our responsibility. 

                                                  ii.      Mark 16:15, “the great commission” while given to the apostles applies to all of us, as its fulfillment required more than just the efforts of those twelve men (actually 13).
2 Tim. 2:2 is an example of this.

                                                iii.      1 Pet. 3:15, “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts and be ready to give an answer…”

                                                iv.      Ezek.33:8, the text attached to this song, speaks of responsibility to warn the lost and that we will be accountable if we don’t.

b.       Help groping souls the light to see

                                                   i.      There are many in this world who are living their lives desperately searching for answers to their problems.  They are groping souls.  The word groping at www.dictionary.com when used as an adjective is defined as, “1. Moving or going about clumsily or hesitantly; stumbling; 2. Showing or reflecting a desire to understand, especially something that proves puzzling.”
While it is true that many who are desperately searching are not interested in God, as we have noted, some are.

                                                  ii.      That light, of course, is the gospel of Jesus – John 1:4 says of Jesus, “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.”
John 8:12, He said, “I am the light of the world.  He who follows me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

                                                iii.      We need to help them see the light.

1.       By being a proper example –
We walk in the light as He is in the light – 1 John 1:7
Matt. 5:16, Phil. 2:14-15 – we are shining as lights in the midst of this crooked and perverse generation.

2.       We also need to be WATCHING! How diligently are we looking for someone who is searching for the truth?  Gal. 6:10 tells us, “As we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially those who are of the household of faith.
John 4:35-36, “Do you not say, 'There are still four months and then comes the harvest'? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!”

c.        That yonder none may say, ‘You showed me not the way.  You never mentioned Him to me.”

 

III.                Vs. 3 – deals with how to do it.

a.        A few sweet words may guide a lost one to His side –

                                                   i.      Not only am I reminded of the power of a godly example, I cannot help but think of the way we speak with others.

                                                  ii.      Col. 4:6, “Let your speech always be with grace seasoned with salt…” (cf. Matt. 5:13)

                                                iii.      Prov 25:11-12, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold In settings of silver.  Like an earring of gold and an ornament of fine gold Is a wise rebuker to an obedient ear.”

                                                iv.      Let us never forget in our quest to reach the lost that the goal is not to win the battle but to win the soul.  Such will require us to be “wise as serpents and harmless as doves.” (Matt. 10:16).

b.       Or turn sad eyes to Calvary

                                                   i.      Never forget that the answer we are striving to impart is found in Jesus Christ.

                                                  ii.      1 Cor. 2:2 Paul said, “For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

                                                iii.      Gal 6:14-15, “But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”

c.        So work as days go by

                                                   i.      Heb. 9:27 reminds us, “And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.  We must constantly remind ourselves that we are working with a deadline.  And the problem is we don’t know when time will run out – for us, for them or for all of mankind.

                                                  ii.      Therefore we must make it our aim to ALWAYS be ready (2 Cor. 5:9)

                                                iii.      Jesus Himself taught, “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work.” John 9:4-5

                                                iv.      Col. 4:5 says, “Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time.”

d.       That yonder none may cry, ‘You never mentioned Him to me.”

 

 IV.                The chorus is a constant reminder throughout the song that we don’t want to be responsible for hindering anyone from obedience.

a.        You never mentioned him to me.  You helped me not the light to see. 

b.       You met me day by day, and knew I was astray – there are those we meet on a regular basis – friends, school mates, fellow workers, family, erring brethren, etc.  We have relationships with some of these!  Are we seeking opportunities to turn our conversations into teachable moments (as Jesus did with the woman at the well)?

c.        Yet NEVER mentioned Him to me.

 Conclusion:  How sad to imagine that one says this to you or I and then turns around and walks away, head bowed down in defeat as he knows what awaits him for all of eternity.  And we didn’t even try!  Friends we better contemplate seriously the fires of hell!  Not just for our own sake, but also for the sake of others!  We are here today because someone cared enough to tell us the good news of the gospel.  Will we return the favor?  Do we, like Paul, consider ourselves “debtor”?  (Rom. 1:14)

And thus we see a song in which we teach and admonish one another to fulfill our responsibilities to reach the lost.  Recently, I heard a sermon dealing with personal evangelism in which the preacher presented an interesting thought about this song.  While it portrays a scene we certainly don’t want to face at judgment (either literally or figuratively), there is something that could be said on the Day of Judgment that is even worse.  Imagine you or I standing before God and giving account for our lives only to hear Him say, “You never mentioned Me to him!”