The Fear of the Lord – Sermon – Hal Linhardt

My notes on Hal Linhardt’s sermon at Forerunner Christian Fellowship, 9/6/09.

-aside: His feet were nailed to a cross, He couldn’t walk… so that I could have feet shod with the gospel of peace.

We seems to be losing ground – each generation slips farther and farther into darkness… it’s like watching a train wreck in slow motion yet nothing can be done to stop it…We need to have a burden.

God can bless you in the morning in your time with Him, yet sweep you off your feet and knock you to the floor in judgment in the afternoon. Both are completely true to His love and character.

Judgment is coming, therefore pray and proclaim.

Spiritual warfare is NOT a one-bullet-in-your-gun thing, it’s an arsenal of weapons for the destruction of fortresses. Prayer and fasting are important, but only one weapon of our spiritual arsenal – we are also called to be proclaimers. Spiritual warfare takes place when you say words about Jesus and proclaim Him into the darkness of peoples’ lives.

Talking about pending judgment in America – not popular in the Western church to speak on, because you don’t leave church happy then. America loves the world and does not love God.

1) they profane God’s name from the whorehouse to the wherehouse to the White House, you don’t have to look far to find the name of Jesus spoken of in trivial ways and idle ways. The Lord said that every idle word will be given account for. His name is to be hallowed, not used flippantly. His name is Holy. The Jews wouldn’t even write the Name of God, so holy it was. But we repeat, we parrot what we hear around us, consciously or unconsciously. So we need to make the effort to be the example, to do just that little bit. Leviticus says that He will not hold him guiltless who takes the name of the Lord in vain.When one uses His name in vain, they are essentially taunting God, saying “come down, if you exist, I DARE you” and that is evidence of America’s fast track to being reproved by God. He takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked when judgment comes – He desires all men to repent and be saved… but if they don’t, then they invite His judgment, and using His name in vain spiritually beckons teh judgment of God.

2) Money. Malachi 3:8 – will a man rob God? You are robbing me, but you say “how have we robbed You?” In tithes and offerings – you are cursed with a curse, the whole nation of you, bring the whole tithe into the storehouse… What America’s doing by not tithing is unconsciously putting God to the test that He will do nothing in response to their lack of obedience. Now, this is a positive promise for those who tithe… This is Hal’s testimony – he was a dope head, drug dealer, unsaved… but now he enjoys the blessing of God. He is not rich by any means… but he has what he needs. But in the nation of America, only 3% of Americans tithe. “Oh, Hal, don’t get in a fluff, people can do what they want with their own money” well, when we don’t tithe we rob God! You wouldn’t go into a church and steal the gold chalice off the platform, but when you don’t tithe, you’re robbing God. “well, I’m under grace, those things don’t apply to me.” Read the Sermon on the Mount – Jesus is upping the ante – He says, “I give you grace, and I up the standard for you. Because  you have grace, live to a higher level, the heart level.”

3) Sex. He made us sexual creatures and wants us to express it – in the confines of marriage. But we’re telling God that we don’t care about what He says, don’t care that He made this body. “I don’t care about what you think about how I use my body. I’m going to do what I want, when I want, with who I want.” 89% of all porn in the world is produced in the USA. If there is any nation that is taunting God, it’s America… the pornography industry’s revenue exceeds that of the combined revenue of all pro football, pro basketball, and pro baseball in America.

1 Timothy 3 – the church of the living God is a pillar and support of truth.

If the church isn’t getting it right, then the culture has no pillar to keep it upright. America is a leaning tower. Eventually it will topple.

There is a lot of loving the world in the church, on a denominational scale. Evangelical Lutheran church in America  – 4.7 million people – has sanctioned the ordination of homosexuals to the pulpit. They’ve joined the US Episcopal church, 2.2 million people, who already said it’s OK. And the United church of Christ, over 1 million people who say that homosexuality is pleasing to God because it’s an expression of his tenderness. Hal says “well, some people are natural liars, natural gossips, compulsive/addictive personalities, tendencies toward homosexuality – all equally need to repent and be saved.” 3 denominations – over 8 millions Christians in over 22,000 churches – the people, or ‘sheeple’ are being led and influenced by these churches. There’s other denominations who haven’t succumbed to this. Presbyterian church, almost 3 million people, has been continually petition and voting on possibly allowing it as well. The bible is clear that it is an abominations. Don’t be decieved – neither fornicators, adulterers, or homosexuals will inherit the Kingdom of heaven – so why would you put someone with that issue unresolved in leadership over the flock? Because the devil is in control of those denominations.

Once the nose of the camel gets inside the tent, the whole thing will be there soon. Or, as the Bible says, a little leaven can leaven the whole lump.

The American Baptists, 5 million people – they struggle – United Methodists, 8 million people. Close to 20 million Christians are being given poisoned doctrine in sermons in over 50,000 churches in America. The apostasy is one of the marks of the end times. Certainly, in America, the apostasy has begun. So you ask yourself, how does this happen? The old frog in the pot of boiling water. We need to know the difference.

The missing ingredient is the fear of the Lord. It is absent in America.Where there is no fear of the Lord before their eyes, the people have no vision of God’s judgment. For time and eternity, you must have a clear Scriptural vision of the judgment of God, without that, you will not have a clear understanding of the Fear of the Lord. The fear of the Lord is the BEGINNING of wisdom – it’s kindergarten if you want to walk in wisdom. Those who fear the Lord will have riches, honor, and life. It is clean, enduring. But judgment is essential for you to have an ongoing, positive fear of the Lord. Isaiah 11 – the seven spirits of God resting upon Jesus: one is that He will DELIGHT Himself in the fear of the Lord.

Biblical definition of the fear of the Lord.

Proverbs 8:13 – the fear of the Lord is to HATE EVIL.

God wants us to exercise the emotions He gave us. One is hatred. He wants you to become a hateful person – if you don’t hate evil, you will compromise with it all day long. The way out of the judgment that comes to those who do wrong is to learn to hate what God hates. You can’t love with any depth at all unless you also hate what God hates. Now, don’t take this into judgmentalism, but in your own life vigorously hate evil in an ever-increasing manner… and be a spokesman for God. It is NOT wrong to say “God HATES that kind of sin.” The reason America is so in sin is that no one has TOLD them that God hates sin, hates taking His name in vain, hates immorality, that god expects us to walk in His ways and keep His commandments.

Immorality will send a person to hell and a nation into judgment. God waits for each to have a chance to turn – He even says of Jezebel, “I gave her space to repent.” But if one does not repent, judgment is coming!

Without a clear vision of judgment, you will not fear God.

Holiness pyramid:

the foundation stone is the eternal judgment of God. This is the number one topic in the Bible. Mentioned 3 times more often than any other topic in the Bible – why a lot of people don’t like the Bible. The Bible says that, because judgment is coming, we fear God.

Most church circles will say that the phrase “fear of the Lord” means “reverential awe.” Granted, it does mean that, plus a whole lot more. If your only definition is reverential awe, you are missing out. It’s like a lion 6 feet from you, roaring, fangs exposed… that feeling would be just starting to grasp the fear of the Lord.

I am reverentially in awe of God when I am RIGHT with God. But if the nation is not right with God, if I am not right with God, the ONLY solution is to know there is judgment coming, therefore fear God!

Exodus 20 – God has come to test you so that the fear of God will be with you, to keep you from sinning.

Of course life goes better without sin. Of course the cross is there and we run to the cross when we do sin. But it’s a better life, a better testimony if I just don’t sin in the first place. What keeps me from sinning? The fear of the Lord! Because there is coming a judgment day when every individual will stand before God and He will analyze and evaluate everything about your life. Thoughts come and go, but when you entertain thoughts, you then are accountable for those thoughts -which is why Paul said “I strive to bring into obedience/captivity my thoughts.” Why does the Holy Spirit go to all that effort and ask us to go through the effort to bring our thoughts into the obedience of Christ? Because He knows we are to bring an account before God for them!This is what the Bible says!

Judgment will be a great and terrible day – both great and terrible for those who believe. We will cry as we’ve never cried as we see things the way they really were in the light of God’s presence. Every man will give an account for every idle word that he speaks, in the day of judgment. That is why profane words are just militaristic against God.

30 times the Lord says in the NT, I am coming and my reward is with me to render unto each according to his deeds.

Thoughts, words, deeds, motives – all are factored in!

Some are only saved as by fire – 1 Corinthians – deeds will pass through testing. They will have no reward but salvation.

2 Corinthians 5 – we shall all appear before the judgment seat of Christ and give an account of our life before Him, therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord,we persuade men.

The judgment sets the stage for you to fear God.

1 Corinthians 7 – perfect holiness in the fear of the Lord

Hebrews 12 – pursue peace with all men and the holiness without which no one can see the Lord

Putting aside unforgiveness, bitterness, resentment… pursue peace with men… and holiness

Romans 11 – branches were broken off that we might be grafted in… don’t be conceited, but fear, for if God did not spare the natural branches He will not spare you either!

God is kind if you continue in His kindness – if you abide in Christ – otherwise, you will be cut off too.

Hal knows about 9 people who have been to hell. Yesterday he was talking to a woman and gave her a CD of one man’s account. She pipes in that she knows someone else who has been to hell in a vision. He was on fire for years!!! But… he fell away.

Ecclesiastes 12 – Solomon’s conclusion: fear God, and keep His commandments.

Revelation – angel that flies around the earth with the everlasting gospel, which is “fear God, and keep His commandments.”

Why do we fear God ? because God will bring every act to judgment.

1 Peter 1 – As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts, which were yours in your ignorance – but like the holy one who called you, be holy yourself in all your behavior, because it is written “you shall be holy, as I AM holy.” If you call Father, if you address as Father the one who impartially judges according to each man’s work (we talk about being God’s favorite, but on that day.. God will not show favoritism) then conduct yourself in fear durign your time of stay upon the earth

Definition of the fear of the Lord:

The gospel is simple. God is holy, He issues His law, His standard, His commandments, so that we as humans would know how to live. We failed, our ancestors failed, we violated His law. So, violators must be punished. So the whole world is going to hell to burn forever! So, you say “oh, don’t talk like that, don’t use that language,” WELL YOU NEED TO HEAR TALK LIKE THAT! The whole world is going to hell, except for those few who has made Jesus Christ Savior Lord OF THEIR LIVES and who are ABIDING in Him! That’s why the Bible says there is One Name given amongst men whereby you MUSt be saved. The word MUST – when you begin to realize EVERYONE is going to hell, the only escape is you MUST be saved!

John 14:6 – I am the way, the truth, and the life, and no man comes to God except through Me!

We have BET OUR SOULS that we are right in trusting this. When you are talking to sinners, each of you is betting your soul that Jesus is or is not the way, the truth, and the life. You’re betting your soul, they need to realize that they are betting their soul as well.

Everybody is under the wrath of God. The ones who escape the wrath to come are those who have found mercy in God. America doesn’t fear God, therefor they have not found mercy. Psalm 103 – His mercy is toward those who fear Him… because people who fear Him get away from sin! They HATE sin.

If that’s true…. how, then, should we live?

It ought to change me so that I talk different to other people.

Things like prayer, or anything we do, can begin as a drudgery or duty… but we do it enough, and it becomes a discipline… and after we endure in discipline, it becomes delight.

We stick with it – it’s not for our pleasure to stick with His commands, it is for our good.

So, there are also stages in telling people about Jesus. There’s a duty stage at first. Get out of the glory of fellowship with friends, go into the world and preach the gospel to every creature as Jesus said… and exemplified…

And hey – shame and guilt can be of God – if you are genuinely sinning, you’re not behaving shamelessly, so why would you feel shameless? We ought to be people easily ashamed of sin.

Well, for the rest of my thoughts on this, just listen to what Hal himself said. I’ve uploaded video of the rest of the sermon, which can be seen here: part 1, part 2, part 3.

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. My passions are being a disciple for the Lord, continuing my education and making a difference in my community.

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