JHMC: Session 1 – Truth that Frees

This is a live blog of the Johnny Hunt Men’s Conference. You can find the conference on twitter @JHMensConf_FBCW and follow the official twitter hashtag here: #JHMC2013.

The conference topic is: ESCAPE PLAN: SIN IS A PRISON; LET’S BREAK OUT!

Session 1: “Bible Engagement/Bible Reflection” (Truth that Frees) Psalm 19:7-14

The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the LORD are true, and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward. Who can discern his errors? Declare me innocent from hidden faults. Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me! Then I shall be blameless, and innocent of great transgression. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer. (Psalm 19:7-14 ESV)

Johnny begins by walking though the above Scripture introducing the lesson. David recorded six different attributes for God’s word.

He quotes Spurgeon and Chambers.

“If you desire Christ for a perpetual guest, give him all the keys of your heart; let not one cabinet be locked up from him; give him the range of every room and the key of every chamber.” Charles Spurgeon

“If for one whole day quietly and determinedly, we were to give ourselves up to the ownership of Jesus and to obeying His orders, we should be amazed at its close to realize all He had packed into that one day.”  Oswald Chambers

The enemy is making you feel guilty not God. There is not condemnation for those in Christ.

He’s going to try to help those men who say they don’t read the Bible often. He reads it daily and gets much out of it. There are those who read there Bible and never see any change. They are just playing games. Jesus will take the Bible and examine you and show you some stuff that needs to be treated and, better yet, taken it out! We are going to look at the affects the Bible has on those who obey.

He speaks on the Torah explaining its instruction. God will direct your path according to His word. Torah comes from a word that means “to shoot an arrow”. Mentions a saying,”The devil wastes no arrows.”

You cannot grow as a Christian without your Bible. The Bible never reads revision or improvement.

[I missed a few items dealing with network issues.]

When God deals with you He sees you naked. We will give an account, not to Johnny, but to God.

He moves to Ecclesiastes 7: All this I have tested by wisdom. I said, “I will be wise,” but it was far from me. That which has been is far off, and deep, very deep; who can find it out? I turned my heart to know and to search out and to seek wisdom and the scheme of things, and to know the wickedness of folly and the foolishness that is madness. And I find something more bitter than death: the woman whose heart is snares and nets, and whose hands are fetters. He who pleases God escapes her, but the sinner is taken by her. (Ecclesiastes 7:23-26 ESV)

There are nets and snares out there for all of us men. Sin comes pursing us! We’ve escaped. Jesus set us free. Its’ a prison break. The word of God is what frees us and keeps us free.

You can’t get converted without the gospel.

The function of the law is to convert us.  It reveals God’s holiness and our sin. What the Law could not do Jesus did. It drives us to despair so that we may be driven to Christ. – Luther

Until Christ returns he has given everyone what they need – His righteousness. The law is a great teacher, but it can’t save you. He likes to think of the law as a school bus – it only goes so far and stops. It stops at Christ.

“I’m just trying to do the best I can.” But the Law says you can’t do it. You can’t save yourself. The Law reveals our need for righteousness. It shows we are a sinner so that we reach out for a Savior.

Some say, “I ain’t that bad.” Yes, you are!

“converting the soul” – literally means bringing back.  It convicts and brings people back to the point of departure from divine truth.  Same word convert (restore) is used in Ps 23:3, “He restores my soul”; note for “His name’s sake.”  Means to revive, to give new life.

♦ The word of God has life
♦ The word of God imparts spiritual life
♦ The word of God sustains life

We can throw our weight on God’s testimony and it will hold us up. Someone says they don’t know the Bible, but they can come to know it. Just a little at a time, day by day.

God’s word cheers us up. God can cause your heart to rejoice regardless of the circumstances. Through God’ statutes the seat of our intellectual faculties knows what to do and how to please the Lord.  This brings joy and gratitude.

Martin Luther tells us that when the words, “The just shall live by faith,” dawned upon his darkened soul, it was “like entering into paradise.”  He said, “Before those word broke upon my mind, I hated God and was angry with Him because, not content with frightening us sinners by the law and by the miseries of life, He still further increased our torture by the gospel.  But when, by the Spirit of God, I understood those words, “the just shall live by faith” – then I felt born again, like a new man!  I entered in by the open doors into the very paradise of God.”

People that go to a Bible believing church sometimes don’t go back because they feel condemned.

He uses his discovering he has cancer as an illustration. He didn’t change doctors when he was told he had cancer. So you can just go find another church if you don’t like what the preacher says. We are living in a day of palatable preachers. You can find one to get drunk with you.

Now that he’s cancer free he is thankful to God for a doctor that told him the truth. Sometimes you’ve got to get hurt a little bit before you get healed.

God’s commands are pure and lead to a pure life when we obey what He says. Quotes John 17:7     If anyone’s will is to do God’s will, he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority. (John 7:17 ESV)

The church is full of a smorgasbord of believers – they pick and choose what they like and don’t like. They compartmentalize their lives.

The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever. It reminds us we cannot learn God’s word without reverence and respect. The judgements of the Lord are true and righteous  altogether.

The word is a treasure to be claimed. It is more desirable than gold. This shows the value of God’s word. The word of God is a taste to be enjoyed, sweeter than honey and the honeycomb.

Johnny says he cannot do what he needs to do without an hour or, preferably an hour and a half, each morning with God’s word. Some people will get up 4am to make a living or you can get up at 3am to make a life. What you are going to work for does not compare to what God is going to work in you.

The word of God has an uncanny way of confronting us with potential sin or sin. Gods word protects us and rewards us in three ways.

1.    The reward of doing the Father’s will
2.    The reward of living a fulfilled life
3.    The reward of the assurance of being ready to stand before Christ

What are secret sins? Those we don’t even see ourselves – sins of ignorance. Johnny explains a rough time in his life when he say a counselor. His wife would say he would say and do things that hurt her. She was making him aware of his sins of ignorance against her. A good, honest accountability partner can help with this.

Honesty is difficult. When God begins to reveal things in our life we might have to ask others for forgiveness.

Johnny mentions blogs and those of us who are blogging right now at the conference. Blogs pushed him to think about some harsh feelings about stuff on blogs in the past. He shares a true recent story about blogging, but I didn’t catch it.

The word of God is a mirror and exposes our faults and sins. Presumptuous sins are intentional. We despise the word of the Lord in these sins.

When we ignore our secret sins by failing to confess and forsake by repenting of them, they will develop into bold and outrageous sin.  They become deliberate, and when they reach this stage, it is hard to be repented of.  It is hard to renounce because it has gotten the upper hand.  We no longer control it, but it controls us.

The way out of sin (prison) is to come with nothing and cling to the cross. We surrender all.


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