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HONESTY

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A Test

Seeking God and having the ultimate relationship with Him requires complete honesty. Covering our faults and failures is no good to anyone. This message challenges the hearer to examine how honest he/she is with the Lord, himself and others.

A survey conducted asked the question "do you lie?" 50% admitted they lie from time to time - the other 50% are liars.
Have you ever heard these famous sayings?
- Abe Lincoln said if a person doesn't lie, he wont have so much to remember
- Honesty is the best policy
- "Let me be honest with you"
- "Honest to goodness"
- "He is honest as the day is long" (it's what a man does at night that can be scary)
- "Some people are just brutally honest"
- A little white lie will never hurt anyone
SLIDE WE LIE
We lie every day.....many times a day. Here are some common every day lies:
- we lie about where we have been
- checks in the mail
- said we did a chore, but didn't
- I need 5 minutes of your time
- Let's have lunch sometime
- went somewhere when you were supposed to be somewhere else
- claim you didn't say something that you really did
- money cheerfully refunded
- open wide, this won't hurt
- is the time card at work accurate or do you "fudge it" from time to time? What is "fudging anyway?
- you seen the car accident but are not telling who was at fault.
- have you ever taken credit for something you didn't do?
THERE IS IN ACTS A STORY ABOUT A COUPLE WHO LIED AND MET A HORRIBLE FATE.
AS A MATTER OF FACT THIS WAS THE FIRST TIME CHURCH WAS MENTIONED IN THE BIBLE SO THIS IS MOST PROBABLY THE FIRST CHURCH.
THE STORY GOES LIKE THIS:
SCRIPTURE
Acts 5:1–11 ESV
But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property, and with his wife’s knowledge he kept back for himself some of the proceeds and brought only a part of it and laid it at the apostles’ feet. But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back for yourself part of the proceeds of the land? While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal? Why is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to man but to God.” When Ananias heard these words, he fell down and breathed his last. And great fear came upon all who heard of it. The young men rose and wrapped him up and carried him out and buried him. After an interval of about three hours his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. And Peter said to her, “Tell me whether you sold the land for so much.” And she said, “Yes, for so much.” But Peter said to her, “How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out.” Immediately she fell down at his feet and breathed her last. When the young men came in they found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her beside her husband. And great fear came upon the whole church and upon all who heard of these things.
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BUT LET ME SET THE STAGE FOR YOU BECAUSE THIS IS WHY WE DO THINGS SOMETIMES,
GOING BACK TO AT THE END WE SEE THE CHURCH ASSEMBLE ITSELF.
BARNABAS WHOS NAME MEANT ENCOURAGER SOLD HIS LAND AND GAVE THE MONEY TO THE CHURCH.
THE FOLLOWERS MOST LIKELY SPOKE ABOUT IT AND THIS GOT ANANIAS GOING ABOOUT HOW HE COULD LOOK THE SAME IN THE PEOPLES EYES.
the significance of this death is that sin causes death a separation from God
separation from God
DID THEY KNOW WHAT THEY WERE DOING WAS WRONG?
 In the book, The Day America Told the Truth, authors James Patterson & Peter Kim reveal some shocking statistics on how far people in this country are willing to go for money:
(25%) Would abandon their entire family (23%) Would become prostitutes for a week or more (16%) Would leave their spouses (10%) Would withhold testimony and let a murderer go free (7%) Would kill a stranger (3%) Would put their child up for adoption
Matthew 6:1–4 ESV
“Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. “Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
Money is a very powerful thing! People sell their souls for money.  What would you do?  Would youlie, steal, inflict pain, manipulate, cheat, bend the rules, compromise your integrity, take someone’s job, threaten someone or even kill?
Matthew 6:1–3 ESV
“Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. “Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,
MATTHEW 6:1
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Charles Swindoll tells the story about a man who bought two chicken dinners late one afternoon. The attendant at the fast food outlet, however, inadvertently gave him the proceeds from the day’s business--a bucket of money (much of it cash) instead of fried chicken. The man didn’t have a clue. It was only when he arrived at the picnic spot with his date that he opened the bag. It was at that moment they discovered the $800. The man and his date did the honest thing. They put the money back into the bag and drove back to the restaurant. He walked in and handed the money filled bag to the manager. He said, “I think this is yours.” Obviously, the manager was relieved and thrilled to death. He looked at the man and said, “Don’t go anywhere. ’Let me call the newspaper. I’m going to have your picture put in the local paper. You must be the most honest man in this community.” The man begged him not to call the newspaper. He point to his date and said, “This young woman isn’t my wife. She is married to someone else. I am married to someone else. Our spouses don’t need to know we are together.” One can be honest and still not have integrity. If you want to be a person of integrity then you must be true.
Here is the whole of the message.
1. There is no sin so great that God can't forgive
2. There is no sin so small that you can afford to keep it hidden
3. The weight of lies is too great to endure for any period of time
4. The longer you wait to come clean, your physical, emotional and spiritual health will deteriorate and die.
Psalm 32 ESV
A Maskil of David. Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit. For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer. Selah I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah Therefore let everyone who is godly offer prayer to you at a time when you may be found; surely in the rush of great waters, they shall not reach him. You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance. Selah I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. Be not like a horse or a mule, without understanding, which must be curbed with bit and bridle, or it will not stay near you. Many are the sorrows of the wicked, but steadfast love surrounds the one who trusts in the Lord. Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous, and shout for joy, all you upright in heart!
C.H. Spurgeon once said: "Nothing can enter heaven which is not real; nothing erroneous, mistaken, conceited, hollow, pretentious, nothing dishonest can be smuggled through those gates. Only truth can dwell with the God of truth."
EXAMINE YOUR HEART
SONG IF WERE HONEST
SONG - IF WE HONEST
https://youtu.be/lDcTvtuuVU8
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