Date written: November 12th, 2005
Scripture ref: James 4:1-10
TITLE: A "Gimme" Society
PROPOSITION: In this lesson we want to look the reason why we live in a "gimme" society: 1) Worldliness, 2) Covetousness, 3) Selfishness.
Objectives: That each one would be able to explain why our society is so selfish with Biblical examples.
Aim: That we each may be able to understand these desires in the hopes of avoiding them.
1. Read: James 4:1-10
2. About the Text:
1) James knew all about selfishness.
2) He knew that conflicts and fights come from our own selfish desires.
3) He knew that vain prayers are uttered because of selfishness.
4) He knew that friendship with the world was the root of selfishness.
5) And he knew that in order to combat selfishness we need humility and godliness.
3. Our situation.
1) We live in a world that is consumed by selfishness.
2) Everywhere we turn we see people who want "what is theirs."
3) The major sins of our society, abortion, euthanasia, fornication, adultery, murder, theft, etc. have the root cause of selfishness.
4) We live in a "gimme" society and are never satisfied with less, it's always "gimme" more.
5) What are the major contributing factors to selfishness in our society?
4. Ref. to S, T, P, O, and A.
I. "Give Us A King" The "Gimme" of Worldliness (1 Samuel 8:4-20).
1. The circumstances.
1) Samuel had governed Israel for years.
2) His sons were now governing, but badly.
3) So the people said, "Give us a king that we may be like all the nations around us."
4) Their desire wasn't merely to rid themselves of evil judges, but to be worldly.
5) They didn't recognize that they already had a Great King!
6) Hosea 13:10-11 "I will be thy king: where is any other that may save thee in all thy cities? and thy judges of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes? I gave thee a king in mine anger, and took him away in my wrath."
2. Worldliness is a great temptation today.
1) We are bombarded to be like people of the world.
2) Television, radio, Internet, and mail advertisements all promote worldliness.
3) "Gimme" prettier skin; "gimme" a sexier body; "gimme" a more amusing personality; "gimme" the attention of the masses. "Gimme, gimme, gimme!"
4) Do we (young and old) want to be just like them?
3. The Bible warns us regarding worldliness.
1) 1 John 2:15-17 "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever."
2) Romans 12:1-2 "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
3) Colossians 3:1-2 "If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth."
4. The "jump off a cliff" test.
5. Our home is in heaven, not in the world.
II. "Give Me Thy Vineyard" The "Gimme" of Covetousness (1 Kings 21:2).
1. The circumstances.
1) Ahab wanted Naboth's vineyard.
2) Naboth refused to sell it.
3) So Jezebel arranged for Naboth's death.
4) Through Jezebel's treachery and Ahab's complicity, he acquired his hearts desire.
5) This was covetousness.
2. Covetousness is a great temptation today.
1) If we don't have the latest and greatest, we have to have it.
2) If our neighbor has it, then we have to have it.
3) "Gimme" that new car; "gimme" that new sound system; "gimme" that new house; "gimme" that new furniture. "Gimme, gimme, gimme!"
4) Do we really want to define ourselves in terms of our neighbor's possessions?
3. The Bible warns us regarding covetousness.
1) Luke 12:15 "And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a mans life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth."
2) 1 Timothy 6:6-8 says, "But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content."
3) Hebrews 13:5 "Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee."
4. Marshall Keeble "It's all gonna be burned up."
5. Our life is not a physical quantity of possessions, but a spiritual quality of holiness.
III. "Give Me My Portion" The "Gimme" of Selfishness (Luke 15:12).
1. The circumstances.
1) The youngest prodigal son was tired of being in his brother's shadow.
2) He wanted to have a life of his own.
3) So he asked his father for his inheritance and moved out.
4) He used that money to indulge in selfish pleasures.
5) This was selfishness.
2. Selfishness is a great temptation today.
1) We want to satisfy our personal desires.
2) We want to be free from problems that other people cause.
3) "Gimme" freedom; "gimme" personal time; "gimme" my space! "Gimme, gimme, gimme!"
4) Do we take so much time for self we don't have time for neighbors? family? God?
3. Does God ever tell us to seek "self" first?
1) Matthew 6:33 Seek the kingdom and His righteousness first.
2) Matthew 22:37-38 Love God. This is the first.
3) Matthew 22:39-40 Love neighbor. This is second.
4) Where does self come in? Philippians 2:3-4 "Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others."
4. Seeking self makes us miserable. Seeking others makes us happy. Seeking God makes us faithful.
5. Selfishness is destructive.
1. We live in a "gimme" society.
1) The "gimme" of worldliness.
2) The "gimme" of covetousness.
3) The "gimme" of selfishness.
1) There is, however, a "gimme" that we need.
2) In John 4:15, the woman at the well said, "Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw."
3) God wants us to have salvation and eternal life, but we need His word to live in our life.
4) Will we say, "Gimme" the water of life?