“Oh Say Can You See”
- In case you didn’t notice, or maybe you are a foreigner who cares not for the country (USA) that you live in, the words “Oh say can you see” are the first words of our national anthem.
- Francis Scott Key penned these words to our national anthem over 200 years ago and that song still brings goose bumps to my skin and tears to my eyes.
- I wonder how many people have studied the words of this song in depth.
- When Mr. Key wrote the words “Oh say can you see,” I believe what was happening in the war was men fighting in the battle for their freedoms that they believed in, but some may have been seen losing their faith, their resilience, and their will to remain fighting. I also believe that they may have felt the heaviness in the loss of their fellow soldiers that fought beside them.
- War is tragic and has no winners. War is hard, takes prisoners, kills people and their spirit, and really has a long lasting effect on people’s lives.
- Our national anthem is a song about our flag which represents our freedom and those who fought to keep their freedoms.
- May I say to you this morning on this July 2nd, 2017 Independence Day Celebration Sunday that we are still in a spiritual warfare within our country. This war has always been in the United States of America. It is taking prisoners, killing people’s spirit, and spiritually killing many of God’s soldiers that fight beside us in the spiritual warfare of the Kingdom of God.
- May I introduce to you a new anthem for God’s people to sing today (and everyday)… “Open my eyes that I may see.”
I. What We Don’t See
A) That Jesus is who He says He is
- The account (It’s not a story, because “stories” can be false) that we read about this morning is truly sad in some respects.
- John the Baptist, the one who recognized Jesus as the Christ (the Messiah), and said “…This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me.” And the same John who baptized the Jesus witnessed the voice of God saying… “This is my son in whom I am well pleased.”
- Now this same John the Baptist is arrested and thrown into prison.
- In the mean time, while John is sitting in shackles Jesus is out gallivanting around ministering to the saints and healing people.
- John was told that this Messiah was going to come “mightier than me…Baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire…he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” And what is He doing? Preaching and healing people! I don’t think He is who he says he is.
- So now we read in Matthew 11 (our text) ”… verse 2…he sent two of his disciples, 3) And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?
- Do you see what has happened here? John was blinded by satan just as Saul of Tarsus was later. Satan is good at that. He’s had plenty of practice.
B) Satan loves to create blindness
- May I encourage us to be like Christ this morning, when you recognize that satan is blinded from the truth… go to their aid. Try to help them see.
- Jesus here in our text tells His disciples in Matthew 11:4 (KJV)…Jesus answered and said unto them, Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see:
- When Jesus said “…shew John again” it means that John had lost his way. He had lost his vision. He had lost sight of the truth.
- Maybe John had forgotten the words of David in II Samuel 22:29 (KJV) …For thou art my lamp, O LORD: and the LORD will lighten my darkness.
- You know that many times we fail to ask the Lord to help us see what it is that we are not seeing. And often it is because we “think” we see perfectly.
- Look folks… we are in a war. The enemy is the devil and he loves the darkness because he is the prince of darkness.
- Our country is in darkness my friends. The battle is still waging and our light is getting dim because we like John have our vision obscured by the people who “think” they know the truth and continue to live as they always have.
- Just like we preached on last week in Revelation 3, they are “lukewarm.” God hates “lukewarm” Christians and has vomited at the sight of them.
- Today’s Christians have failed our country. We have failed by not preaching the truth. Failed because we do not go to those who do not see, and remind them as Jesus’ disciples were told to remind John.
- This is why sometimes we repeat what we have taught before.
- This is why it is important to be at every service, hear every message, and every lesson, so that you can know the truth.
- Most people have a small taste of the truth because they are “lukewarm.”
C) Helping others who do not see
- The truth that he had lost sight of are “… those things which ye do hear and see.”
- The things that Jesus has taught the disciples are those things that are mentioned in verse 5…Matthew 11:5 (KJV)…The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor (Spiritually) have the gospel preached to them.
- I also want you to notice never advised these disciples to rebuke John, or tell him that he was blind, or any negative speaking towards John.
- Jesus merely commanded them to “shew John again.” That means to cause John to call to his remembrance those things. WHY? Because he had forgotten.
- Satan had obscured his vision. He needed the help of his brothers in Christ.
II. What Do We See
A) A nation in spiritual bankruptcy
- What do we mean when we use the term “spiritual bankruptcy?”
- The word “bankrupt” When looking it up in Webster’s dictionary it is defined this way… 1. a person legally unable to pay their debt. 2. A person who lacks a certain quality or has failed completely in some way. 3. Destitute or ruin.
- So, to be “spiritually bankrupt” means, that a person (or nation) is so deeply involved with sin that they has become unable to pay God what they owe Him. They no longer have the quality of life or spirituality they once had. They have completely failed and are in ruin.
- Our nation is on the edge of its own demise (ruin).
B) A nation bent on “My rights.”
- Every time I turn around someone is hollering about their rights being violated because of something someone had done to them. It just makes me sick.
- The homosexuals are vying for their rights.
- The Negro race always saying the white people are racists and are taking away their rights.
- The Indians have likewise jumped on the discrimination train.
- Atheists and non-religious people have become more violent towards the religious freedoms that we have in America.
C) A nation whose God is not the Lord
- Do you realize how many religions there are in America?
- Our nation used to be defined as “One Nation Under God” and “In God We Trust.”
- We have begun to be “One Nation under many gods” and “In God we barely trust.”
- Psalm 14:1…The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. America is full of “foolish” people claiming there is no God. When a person continues to sin without repentance they are saying.. “God doesn’t care, or he’s not that strict.” They believe not God because they haven’t really searched Him.
- 1b)…They are corrupt, This means they have taken what used to be good , and for the benefit of the people and turned it into something bad and it ruins the people.
- 1c)…they have done abominable works, The word abominable in the Hebrew is “tāʿab” which means “detestable.” They no longer do things for the benefit of everybody involved. It’s all about greed, rights, and money.
- 1d)… there is none that doeth good. This phrase, verse, meaning is repeated time and time again all through scripture about mankind. This is why we needed a Savior. This is why God is so gracious to us a sinner. “For by grace are ye saved, that not of yourselves lest any man should boast.”
- In fact, Paul recites David in Romans 3:10…As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11) There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. 12) They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
D) A nation full of weak Christian warriors
- Our Government over the past 8 years has squelched the voices of Christians all over the nation to a point that we are afraid to say anything about God or Jesus Christ in public.
- What Does God See?
E) Is there any that understand or seek God?
- Psalms 14:2) The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God.
- God really doesn’t desire to look down. He knows the heart of man. He has dealt with man for generations.
- Now I ask you this morning… “Does God see people understanding God?” “Do you think God sees people seeking God?”
- God sees a Nation (The good ole’ USA) that doesn’t understand God, nor do they seek Him. How can I say that? Well my friend look around you.
- When people (mainly our government) has chosen to neglect the authority of God by taking away the religious freedoms of His people (Just as Pharaoh did in Egypt) then God will bring judgment upon the people in the land, the rulers, and those that condone the government’s ruling.
F) What God saw then is what God sees now
- Finally, in the closing of our message this morning let us look at what David says that God sees. Psalms 14:3) They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
- Did you note that there are three things that God sees…
- “They are all gone aside,” – This means at one point in time (or their history) they were good people, or a good nation. But they have “gone aside,” meaning that they have backslidden or started to become more liberal, flexible, being self dependant, and stayed from the truths of God.
- “…they are all together become filthy:” – “filthy” meaning dirty minded, hearted, and their worship was no longer a sweet smelling savor in the nostrils of God.
- “…there is none that doeth good, no, not one.” Pretty self explanatory isn’t it. Kind of like the church at Laodacia that Christ sent a letter to. There wasn’t even one soul in that congregation that did the right thing… “no not one.”
IV. How Do We Fix The Problem?
A) Focus on the problem, not the people
- What are the problems America faces today? II Chronicles 7:14…America doesn’t do it.
- No respect for authority (God or His house, government, parents, or pastors)
- No discipline from the parents because they are not disciplined themselves.
- No restrictions. Too much freedom.
- No accountability. Everybody is doing what is right in their own eyes.
- Get America Back to God
- Exodus 33:13…Now therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, shew me now thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight: and consider that this nation is thy people.