Now, in John chapter 1, the part that I wanted to focus on is beginning there in verse 35 where the Bible reads, "Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God! And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou? He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour."
What I want to preach about is that phrase in verse 39, "Come and see." This is a phrase that comes up a couple of times in this passage. It comes up a few times throughout the Bible. Let me just start out by explaining to you the scenario here, what's going on in John chapter 1. Of course, we just finished reading that powerful passage, of course, about how Jesus Christ is God in the flesh and then about John the Baptist preaching about the Lord Jesus Christ and pointing people onto Jesus. After John the Baptist has preached about Jesus, baptized Jesus and so forth, he points to Jesus and says, "Behold the Lamb of God." Two of John's disciples, they leave John and they go to follow Jesus.
Basically, Jesus is just walking along and he notices these two guys following him. They haven't really talked to him or approached him. He's just walking along. Jesus looks back and these two guys are just following him. He says, "What seek ye? What do you guys need?" It's kind of a funny thing that he says. He says, "What seek ye?" They say, "Master ... " Look, if you would, at verse 38, they say to him, "Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou?" I guess they just didn't know what else to say. They just asked him, "Well, where are you staying? Where do you live? We're following you now. We want to go wherever you are."
"He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour." Instead of answering their question, he's going to show them. He's not just going to tell them where he dwells. He says, "Come and see. Let me just show you."
Keep reading. He says in verse 40, "One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ. And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone. The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow me." You'll find Jesus saying those two words over and over again in the four gospels, just those two words, "Follow me. Follow me."
It says, "Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph." Now stop right there. Was Jesus really the son of Joseph?
That's what they think. They're just looking from the outside. The Bible is very careful to never call Joseph Jesus' father. Often, characters in the Bible will mistakenly refer to Joseph as his father and that doesn't make it right, of course.
"And Nathanael said unto him, Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth? Philip saith unto him, Come and see." Again, that phrase kind of popping up, "Come and see." Another phrase that keeps popping up is the phrase, "Follow me." Just from the Book of Matthew alone, don't turn there, but this happens in all the gospels over and over again.
Just from the Book of Mathew alone, Matthew 4:19 says, "And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." Matthew 8:22, "Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead." Matthew 9:9, "And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him." Matthew 16:24, "Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me." Matthew 19:21, "Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me." Just in Matthew alone, over and over, "Follow me. Follow me." We went to Mark, Luke, John. We find same thing over and over again Jesus telling people, "Follow me. Follow me. Come and see. Follow me."
What I want to point out about that is the fact that Jesus Christ didn't just tell people how to do it, he showed them how to do it. He led by example. Now, look if you would at Matthew chapter 11. As you turning to Matthew 11, let me say this, in Matthew 10, he's giving them instructions to go out and preach the gospel. He sends them out to go out into all the towns and villages and to preach the gospel and to do a lot of good works. At the end of chapter 10, he's finished sending them out. It says in verse 1 of chapter 11, "And it came to pass, when Jesus had made an end of commanding his twelve disciples, he departed thence to teach and to preach in their cities."
What we see in Matthew 11:1 is that as soon as he's done giving instructions to the disciples, we see him going out and doing the exact thing that he just told them to do. He's setting the example. He says, "Okay. Here's what we're going to do. You're going to go into a town. You're going to preach. This is what you're going to preach. This is who you're going to preach to. This is how you're going to do it." He sends them out to go and then he says, "Okay. Now, I'm going to do the exact same thing myself."
Now, there are a lot of people who can tell you how to do a lot of things, but there are very few people who can show you how to do the right things. You see, it's easy to talk the talk but it's not always easy to walk the walk.
A lot of people could tell you about soul winning or tell you how to go soul winning. What I'd rather have is somebody show me how to go soul winning and say, "Come and see soul winning. Come and see a church that's filled with the spirit of God. Come and see a church that is zealous of the word of God, that's zealous of winning the loss to Christ, that's zealous of good work." We're not just going to tell you about it, we want to show you. We want to say, "Come and see." Not just here's the theory. Here is how we think it would work. Here is what we think is a good idea."
I remember when I first started soul winning, when I first started going out, and knocking doors, and giving people the gospel, I remember most people in my circle of friends and the people that I knew were very critical of it. Here's why. For about five years when I was a teenager, we were going to some really dead churches, and we were going to some really liberal, like Neo-Evangelical type churches. I was at a public school where I basically joined in with different Christian groups on campus where you'd go in the morning and pray with this group. At lunch, there's a Bible club. I had a lot of friends that were just really liberal Christians because I was just trying to hang around with whatever Christian friends I could find at that stage.
Once I got into an Independent Fundamental Baptist Church and I started getting zealous of soul winning and everything, I was excited about it. I'd be telling people, "Man, it's great. We're going out. We're going to get people saved and this and that." A lot of people were down on it. They try to throw a wet blanket on it. I was all excited about it. You try to talk to other people, and you think they're going to get excited and want to come with you. They just would throw a wet blanket on it, not that interested.
I just remember how many people ... They'd ask you, "Well, what do you say? When you go to give people the gospel, when you go out evangelizing, what do you say? What do you tell them?" I remember I'd start telling them, "Well, here's what I go through with people." I'd start showing them. I go to Romans 3:23. I'm showing them that we've all sinned. I go to Romans 6:23. I go to Revelation. I show them about hell and everything. How many people just, "Whoa, whoa, whoa. Hell? You're going to turn people away. You can't talk about hell. You can't tell people that they're ... You got to just love them into the kingdom. You shouldn't mention hell. You shouldn't be going ... " I remember just people who didn't do any soul winning being the experts on soul winning.
That's right, yeah.
I remember one time somebody being critical. I'm thinking of a particular person that was real critical when they heard the type of evangelizing we were doing and the type of soul winning we were doing. I said to that person, I said, "Well, you know what? I have an idea." I said, "Why don't I start doing it exactly like you do it. Show me how to do it. In fact, let's go right now."
Everybody wants to sit back and tell you how it's done. People who've never started a church want to tell you how to start a church. People who have never had kids want to tell you how to raise your kids. People who are unmarried are the experts on marriage. They're so many people who want to tell you how it's done. You know what? We ought to show people how it's done and not just be one that talks the talk but one that walks the walk.
"Come and see how to read the Bible," ought to be what we tell our children. Come and see Bible reading. Come and see prayer. Come and see Bible memorization. Come and see soul winning.
You know what's the best way to learn soul winning is? It's not a class. It's not a seminar. It's not a book. It's not a tape. It's called going out soul winning with someone who can show you soul winning. That's how I learned to win souls. I went out and there were a lot of people who could have told me how to do it, but that didn't help. Yet, I went out with somebody and just tagged along with a guy, Brother Dan at my church, and I tagged along with him for about two and a half hours. You know what? I just watched him do it. I learned how to do it. He showed me how to do it. I came and I saw.
We need to be people that lived a life that can be emulated and followed by others, and where we can be an example onto other people, and where we can demonstrate how to live for God, demonstrate a life that is separated, that is sold out for God. Demonstrate a life of godliness. Demonstrate a godly marriage. Demonstrate child rearing. Demonstrate soul winning. Demonstrate preaching. Demonstrate all the things that God wants us to do so that we can say to people, "Follow me. Not do as I say, not as I do, but actually just follow me." Why could Jesus say, "Follow me?" Because he's doing everything right, because he's walking in the right steps and he was able to say, "Follow me." He knows that he's leading people in the right direction. All throughout the Bible we see this concept.
Go to Titus chapter 2. Titus chapter number 2. I love that verse in Acts 1 where it talks about what Jesus began both to do and teach. That ought to be our life. There are some people who do but they don't teach. There are some churches where the pastor lives a very godly life. He has a great marriage. He raised his children well. He's doing a lot of soul winning and he lives a very clean, and separated, and righteous, and godly life. Then when he gets behind the pulpit, he doesn't preach all the counsel of God. He's doing but he's not always teaching. He's holding back on some of the preaching. You see, he's got it straight in his life, but he doesn't want to teach certain things for fear of offending even though he's doing them.
Then there are other people who have the opposite problem. They teach but they don't do. What do we call that?
A hypocrite, right. A hypocrite is one who says but they do not. They'll tell you all the right answers. They'll talk soul winning. They'll talk Bible reading. They'll talk prayer. They'll talk separation. They'll talk everything. When it comes to living the life, they're not doing it. That's a hypocrite. Either one is failing. We need to be those who do and teach. It's not just enough for you to be godly as a parent. You need to also teach your children to do the same thing. Don't just do, teach. Of course, don't just teach, do. Show them how it's done. Be an example for them to follow.
Look at Titus chapter 2, verse number 7. The Bible says, "In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity." We have both halves of the equation in this verse. The first half says, "You need to show yourself a pattern of good works. You need to be an example that someone can follow." In the second half, he says, "Also you need to have doctrine." Doctrine means teaching. He's saying, "Live the life. Be an example. Be a pattern but also you need to teach. You need to have doctrine. You need to tell other people how to do it. Then you need to show them how to do it and be a pattern that they can follow."
Go if you would to 2 Thessalonians 3. You're right there in Titus. It's just a couple of pages away. While you're turning there, I'll read for you some other verses. James 5:10 says, "Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience." 1 Peter 2:21, "For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also had suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps." Again over and over again, it's emphasized being an example, following an example, being a pattern. Come and see. Not just here's how to do it, but let me show you how to do it.
Look at 2 Thessalonians 3 verse 9. It says, "Not because we have not power, but to make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us." Go to Philippians chapter three, a few pages left in your Bible. Philippians chapter 3. He said, "To make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us." Paul was basically saying in that passage, if you get the context, he's saying, "There are certain things that I have the power to do. He said, "I did not do them because it was very important to me to be an example unto you to follow. I wanted to show you how to do it."
You see, Paul said that it would have been perfectly legitimate for him to live off the gospel, to basically just forbare working and just only to work in the ministry full-time. That all of his work will be preaching and teaching the word of God. He said that there were a lot of people in Thessalonica who were not working. There were a lot of lazy people. He said that there were a lot of people among them that were working not at all, but were busy bodies. He talked about people who just would not work. He said to them that famous phrase, "That if any would not work, neither should he eat." Which is the truth, obviously. If people refused to work, they shouldn't even eat. Obviously, we're supposed to work and eat our own bread, the Bible says.
Paul knew that was something that they needed help with and that they struggled with. There were a lot of people that were failing when it came to their work ethic so Paul said, "I made a point not to take anything from anybody because I just wanted to demonstrate paying my own way. I wanted to demonstrate hard work." He said, "I work night and day when I was with you." He said, "I travailed." That's a word for just really intense labor. He's saying, "I had labored. I had travailed. I struggled. I got up early. I stayed up late. I work day and night. Why? Not because I didn't have the power to take it a little easier." He said, "I wanted to make myself an example for you to follow us. I wanted to teach you how to work hard. I didn't want to just get up and preach, 'Hey, you need to go to work. You need to provide for your family. You need to pay your bills.'" He said, "I wanted to show you how to do it. I want to be an example, a pattern and show you by example."
You know what? You are n example onto someone or at least you should be no matter who you are. Now, if you're a parent, it should be obvious to you that you're an example unto your children. Whether you like it or not, your children will grow up and be like you. Everything brings forth after its own kind. Your children will grow up and they will emulate you, so you need to ask yourself, "Am I the person that I want my children to grow up and be? Do I want them to grow up and be like me? If they grow up and be like me, are they living for God? Am I the right example?"
You can say things until you're blue in the face. You can say, "Now, kids, don't make the mistakes I have made. Kids, I know I smoke and it's too late for me, kids, but just don't ever start smoking, kids." Statistically the chance of them smoking are real high. I don't care what you say because they're going to do what you do.
I see my children constantly emulating me. I see my children constantly emulating my wife. That's where they learn more from what you do than what you say. Let me give a perfect example. My son Solomon started taking piano lessons a long time ago, many years ago. I'd always tell him, "Solomon, practice the piano. Practice the piano. Practice the piano." He wouldn't really practice it much in the beginning. I tried telling the other kids, "Hey, learn how to play piano. Practice the piano." They just didn't really practice that much. Sometimes it can be hard to get children to practice the piano. They just don't do it.
Then I came to point where I decided, several years ago, I decided, "You know what? I want to get good at playing the piano again." I've been pretty good at playing the piano in the past, but I just forgotten a lot of my piano playing skills. I decided, "You know what? I really want to get better at playing the piano."
I had an injured finger and I noticed that ... It's still messed up to this day. I noticed that when I played the piano, it seemed like my finger did better. Maybe it was like a physical therapy for my finger if I played the piano.
I knew there's always a need in church to play the piano. Obviously, we have a wonderful piano player, but sometimes I like for him to lead the singing. Then I could play the piano and so forth, give my voice a break. It's hard to find people that have the ability to lead the singing or play the piano. Even at a church with a hundred people in it, there's less than I can count on one hand people that could play the piano and less than I can count on one hand people that could lead the singing.
I started practicing the piano for a few hours a day. You know what I instantly noticed? All of a sudden, he's practicing everyday. I could tell him over and over, "Play the piano. Play the piano." Not happening. Then I started playing the piano and then it's like, "Dad, when are you going to be done? I need to play the piano. I need to practice." It's that old thing. The kid picks up the toy and now, all of a sudden, it's the most popular toy. A minute ago, nobody noticed it. Why? Because people learn more from your example than just what your words are. By me practicing the piano, all of a sudden, my son, now, he wants to play. He wants to practice. He sees me doing it. Now he wants to do it. Then he starts practicing everyday and I would practice for long hours. He would practice for long hours. Now he's very good at it. He plays the organ and everything. Why? Because he saw an example and that was more powerful than just my words.
Now, look, playing the piano is not the most important thing in this life. Let me tell you something. What are the other important things that you're teaching or not teaching your children based on your example? What kind of a pattern are you teaching? If you're one that plops down in front of the TV for hours, what are you teaching? If you're one who goes out, and works hard, and works, and pays the bills, you know what? You're teaching your children. You're teaching them a good lesson there. If you're one who takes care of your responsibilities, and you're one that spends time with family, and you're one that works hard, if you're a wife who works hard and cooks nutritious meals and well-thought-out meals, you know what? You're teaching your daughters that. If you're one who just throws a Hungry-Man into the microwave, well, you're teaching them that, too. That's what they're going to grow up. I feel sorry for the guy that they're married to. They're not going to cook for them. It's just going to be all just something that's just heated up, some kind of a GMO-laden, toxic cocktail of chemicals.
What I'm saying is that our actions speak louder than our words. Now, both are important. I don't want to downplay the teaching part. It's important to sit down and talk with your children. It's important to preach the word of God to your children. It's important to read the Bible to them, and sit down with them, and expound it to them and, as a father, to lead your house and to lead your wife and children. Let me something. Your actions are speaking louder than your words. Every mother should take the time to teach her sons and teach her daughters the word of God and just how to live their life, but they also need to be a pattern of good works. They also need to be able to answer questions by saying, "Come and see." That's the best answer to a lot of questions, come and see.
Let me just show you. Why don't I just show you an example that you can follow? Philippians 3:17 says, "Brethren, be followers together of me." In another place he said, "Follow me as I follow Christ." Here he said, "Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample. (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)"
In verses 18 and 19, he's warning about a lot of bad examples that are out there, bad role models, people that are leading children, and leading young people, and leading adults astray down the wrong path. He's saying, "Look, I don't want you to follow these bad role models and bad examples." He's saying, "I want you to follow me because I'm going to be an example to you. You're going to follow me as I follow Christ." Now that's a pretty bold statement to say, "Be followers of me." For Paul to say that, he had to be pretty confident that he's living a life that can back that up. He's going to say, "Be followers of me." You know what? If people take him up on that and then they start to fail, "Well, we're just following you, Paul." "Well, I meant do what I say." No, no, no. They're going to do what you do. Paul says, "Be followers of me and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample."
Now, of course, Jesus Christ needs to be one that we're ultimately following more than anyone else. He's the example. He's left us an example that we should follow in his steps. We have Matthew, Mark, Luke and John to show us a picture of what his life looked like. We have all the other scriptures that illuminate Jesus Christ and his life, and his ministry, and his walk that we could live after as a pattern. You know what? It's also good to have flesh and blood, human role models that we can follow.
Now, we need to be careful that we don't put too much emphasis on following man and that we are always looking unto Jesus and ultimately following him. It is still necessary to have human role models as well. We don't wan go too far in the other direction and say, "Well, I'm just going to follow Christ. Therefore, I'm not going to listen to any man or follow any man's example." No. Paul said, "Follow me." Paul said, "Follow me as I follow Christ." Paul said, "Mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample." He's saying, "Look, find people that are examples that you can follow but be prepared for if those people let you down to find a new role model." You got to ultimately follow Christ. When Christ and that person part ways, you stay with Christ. You follow Christ all the time and you put him first.
There's nothing wrong with children looking to their parents and following them as a leader. There's nothing wrong with a pastor being a leader. There's nothing wrong with other men in the church or other ladies in the church that can be role models and people that you look to maybe in areas where they excel, maybe in soul winning, whether in music, in preaching, whatever. Different people in the church, they can be role models.
Let me say this. You may not have children. You may not be married. You may not think that anybody is following you, but often there are people in the church that look up to you without you even knowing it. You don't even realize that people are following you. That when you go astray, you could take other people with you that are looking at you.
Some of you guys might think, "I don't have any kids. I'm not married." You know what? Kids might look to you and think you're a pretty cool guy. Kids look up to people that are older than them and they think that everything they do is cool. They just pick certain people and they look to them and follow them. You want to be sure you're an example to everyone that's around you. Not only that, but hopefully you're one who preaches the gospel to every creature. Hopefully, you're one who has won some people to the Lord that are your spiritual sons and daughters because you won them to Christ. You need to be an example to them. You need to say to them, "Come and see." You need to invite them to church and say, "Come and see. Come out soul winning with me." That's the best thing that you could do for them is showing them an example of how to live for Christ.
Go to 2 Kings chapter number 10, 2 Kings chapter number 10. This is one of my favorite verses in the Bible. I really like this verse. This is the story about Jehu and Jehonadab. In 2 Kings chapter 10, we see Jehu when he's about to execute judgment on all of the enemies of the Lord. He's going to destroy the worshipers of Baal. He's going to turn the whole nation back to God. The only problem with this story because ... It is a really good Bible story. The only problem is that once Jehu gets in in power, once he's king of the nation, he turns away from the Lord. That kind of power often corrupts people. That's why God didn't want them to have a monarchy in the first place.
God made it really clear to them, "You don't need a king because the Lord shall be your King. The Lord is going to rule over you." He made it clear to them, "Look. Just have judges that can interpret the law for you, that can explain to you what God's will is in different situations. You can go to these judges and the judges will resolve disputes. They will judge between a man and his brother and a man and his neighbor. They'll basically settle controversies." He said, "You don't need a king."
By the way, they didn't need a legislative branch either. Good night. Just an endless flow of more laws. That's what we have today, just more laws, new laws. The laws of our nation could not even begin to even fit in this building if we just stacked them up. Even probably just the laws of Tempe would just be so much greater than the size of the book in my hand. These are God's laws. Man's laws would just fill this whole building, spill out in the parking lot. People think God is too strict. God's laws are nothing compared to man's. Man wants to just regulate everything.
Somebody asked me this morning, "Why our sign," our lighted up sign Faithful Word Baptist Church, "Why our sign is still on the old building? Why we haven't moved the sign?" Well, we're just lazy. It's not that we're lazy. The reason that we haven't moved the sign is because, believe it or not, it's illegal to put that sign on this building even though we're in the same parking lot. See, when we made that sign, it had to be made exactly according to all these specifications, of inches and feet. It's got to be like this and that.
Then we make this exact sign that fits all of the City of Tempe's specification and then we get it installed. We moved a few hundred feet away in the same parking lot, "Yeah, you need a completely different sign." "We can't have a sign that's lit up?" "You can have a lit up sign, just going to be completely different. Instead of being long and skinny, it's going to be square." What in the world? We have to basically just get a completely new sign made. It'd be smaller. It's just expensive. Basically, we just leave that one there. The landlord let's us just leave it there and leave it on. Underneath, it just says, "We've moved. Turn around and you'll see it. It's a hundred feet away, whatever."
It just goes to say man has all these laws, all these rules, just stacks and stacks of books. They're just making more. This year, they'll make more. Next year, they'll make more. There's no end to it. God pretty much has laid out his law. He's just like, "This is the law. Done." It wasn't three branches of government. It was just one branch, judicial. No legislative. No executive. That was God's original plan for the children of Israel.
If you remember, they eventually rejected that plan and they said, "Nay. Give us a king so that we'll be like all the nations. We want to be like the other nations." Remember, Samuel was upset about it. Samuel went to God and God said, "Look, Samuel. They haven't rejected you. They rejected me that I would rule over them."
Is there any doubt that that was not God's plan that they have a king? It's real clear. Read 1 Samuel chapter 8. It's real clear. He says, "Look, they've rejected me from ruling over them by desiring a king." Then later Samuel rebukes them again and says, "That you sinned against God in asking for a king." Then it rains on their harvest, and they're all scared, and trembling. Remember that?
If you remember King Saul was not chosen by man. King Saul was chosen by God. Do you remember that? He's miraculously chosen. Samuel anointed him. They cast lots and the lot fell upon Saul. There were all these signs and wonders that confirm that Saul was God's choice. Do you think Saul was a bad guy?
No. God picked a man who was righteous. God picked a man who was humble. God picked a man who was godly. We see that in his life up to that point. He's humble. He loves God. He wants to ask the man of God for advice. There's nothing negative about him. He's God's choice.
What happens when he becomes king? He wants to hang onto that power. As soon as he feels that his power is threatened, when David starts ... It all started through a song. That's how it all started. They sing a song where they say, "Saul has slain his thousands, And David has slain his ten thousands." Which of course was not true. Saul had probably slain more up to that point than David. They started praising David a little too much. He started getting jealous. He wanted to hang onto that power. He start breaking all kinds of God's laws and doing a lot of things that were wrong trying to hang onto power.
He literally went nuts. He was crazy. He's throwing a javelin at his own son. He's saying all kind of crazy things. He's stripping his clothes off. He's just going nuts. One minute, he's crying and, "David, I'm so sorry." Then a minute later, he's like, "Let's kill him." He's just nuts. Why? Because human beings are sinful and they can't handle that power. Even a good man, a godly man, a humble like Saul couldn't handle it.
Then who was the next king? David, the man after God's own heart. David, the man after God's own heart gets in that position of power. What he starts doing? Taking multiple wives, taking concubines. He commits adultery. He commits murder. Just the power goes to his head. You know what? There were a few good kings but most of the kings of Israel and Judah were bad guys. The few of them that were good, they still had some issues. They were just relatively good. They had some serious issues because people weren't designed to have that power.
The reason I say that is because I don't think we should walk away saying, "Jehu was a bad guy." I think that at this point in his life, Jehu was a really good guy. I think he was a very righteous man. Again handpicked by God. A prophet came to him, anointed him and said, "You're going to be king of Israel," which not every king was specifically handpicked by God. Many of them just inherited that position, some of them even against God's will, Athaliah and others.
We see that here in the story, this is Jehu before he goes downhill. This is Jehu before he turns away from the Lord and, at this point, man, this guy is on fire. This is a great story. I love the story. It's an awesome story. You just have to forget about ... While you're reading it, you have to forget the end and just enjoy the story before you get the letdown where Jehu turns from God.
This is when he's in the heyday. Man, he's just on a mission. He's just going to destroy Baal and the worship of Baal. He's going to turn the nation back to the Lord. He's going to take over. In verse 15, he comes upon Jehonadab, the son of Rechab. Jehonadab, the son of Rechab, has a whole chapter in the Book of Jeremiah dedicated to him. He's a godly man in his own right.
He asked him. "He lighted on Jehonadab the son of Rechab coming to meet him: and he saluted him, and said to him, Is thine heart right, as my heart is with thy heart?" Say that 10 times fast. "Is thine heart right, as my heart is with thy heart?" Just basically he's saying, "Are you with me or not? Are you on board or not? Are you on my side or not?" "And Jehonadab said, It is. If it be, give me thine hand. And he gave him his hand; and he took him up to him into the chariot." I love this verse. "And he said, Come with me, and see my zeal for the Lord. So they made him ride in his chariot."
What I love about that exchange is just the few words that are exchanged. Just, "Are you with me or not?" Just, "It is." "Is your hear right?" "Yes." "Get in the chariot." He gets in. "Come with me and see my zeal for the Lord." See, he's not just going to tell him how to do it. He's going to show him how to do it. He's going to show him what zeal looks like. He's going to show him what being excited about the things of God looks like. He's going to show him what it's like to serve God with all your heart and to be on fire for God.
You know what? That's what we need more than anything. We need some people to be examples. A lot of people could talk and say a lot of things. Talk is cheap. We need more people that are willing to live the life, that are willing to put it out on the line and be an example of someone who gives everything for God. That's what we need. That's what Jesus was. He constantly say, "Follow me. Follow me." You know what people are constantly telling him? I can't follow you. It's too hard. I got to go do this first. Look, it's never going to be easy to follow Jesus, but you know what? Being a leader is not easy either, but it's something that somebody has got to have that zeal and that drive to be able to say, "Come and see."
All that to say this, we need to be people that set an example of what's right, not just talk about it and not just ones who know the right answers. It's easy to get comfortable and complacent after you've been in church for a long time. It's easy to talk about and glory in past victories. You know what I mean? Yeah. I've had people tell me about soul wining who'd been soul winning 10 years ago. "Man, back when we went soul winning, here's how we used to do it. We did this." You know what? We need leaders who can lead by example today. Today.
It's great to read books or listen to sermons of people from the past. You know what? Honestly, we need some flesh and blood, real human being leaders today to follow that are in our generation, that are dealing with the struggles that we're dealing with, that are living the life that we're living today. Honestly, I like to listen to preaching sometimes throughout the week. I like to listen to people that are alive right now that are preaching right now. If I want to hear somebody preach, if I want to follow somebody, I either want to follow the people in the Bible as an example. You know what? It's also great when you have leaders that you can look to.
You know what? Your children are going to have a much easier time in life if you set them a good example. There are a lot of great things that my parents modeled for me and showed me that I could follow. You know what? Some people's parents model a lot of great attributes and it just makes their lives so much easier.
You'll talk to some people who are really good at handling money. Then other people are bad at money. A lot of people just say, "Yeah. My parents taught me how to handle money. It's just always been easy for me." Then other people, they basically fail financially. They can't budget. They can't control their finances. It's just like that's how their parents were. Then they have to fight this uphill battle of trying to figure out how to have a good marriage because their parents are divorced. They have to figure out, "Okay. How do I have a good marriage?" Their parents didn't spank them so then it's like, "Okay. Now I have to figure out how to spank my kids or how to follow the Bible." Maybe your parents were Christians and they brought you up in a godly home. You know what? That's a great advantage to you and onto whom much is given, of him shall much be required.
There are a lot of people here tonight that didn't grow up in a Christian home. They're fighting an uphill battle of trying to reinvent the wheel and pave the way for their children. Let me say this. We need to be an example for our children and give them a greater starting point so that when they grow up, they'll be able to say, "Okay. Well, here's how my parents did it. Let's do it." They'll be able to do it.
Look, people who start churches, it's great if they have somebody to follow who's starting a church. I remember when I was starting this church, I was trying to find as many people as I could who started churches and try to ... "What did you do? How'd you do it?"
There was a real famous book out there on starting a church. Everybody kept saying, "Read this book, man. This guy has written the book on starting a church." Okay. Let's go order it. Let's find it. Then I went to the website to order the book. I looked at it and the guy didn't start a church. He had taken over a church. He had taken over an existing church, which is fine. I didn't even buy the book. The guy might have a lot of great things to say.
Instead, I read a book by a guy who was unknown but he had just started a church less than two years ago. He was an Independent Fundamental Baptist. He seems like a solid guy. I thought, "I'd rather read his book." He's doing it now. He's got the experience now. He's succeeded. He started a church from scratch. Let's read what he has to say. The big famous guy, he's one in 4,000 or whatever but he didn't even start the church. I just wanted to follow an example. I wanted to see a pattern. I wanted to be shown how to do it. You know what? That's what we need to be for our children, for other believers. We need to be an example for people to follow us, and we need to be able to say to people, "Come and see. Follow me. Do as I do. Be like I am." Paul said, "Be as I am." Can you say that to your children with confidence? Can you say that to people that you're into Christ? Be an example.
Let's bow our heads and have a word of prayer. Father, please just help us to be a pattern of good works. As Paul told Timothy, "Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers." Help us to be an example of the believers. Help us to live a life that matches up with what we preach and what we say. Help us not to just talk the talk but help us to walk the walk, and help us to be able to guide our children to live for you when they grow up, and to basically be like us and hope that to be somebody who's worth being. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.