Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
Email Preach Him with Dr. Jim

The Problem In America
2 Ch 7:14-15

14. if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 15 Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place. NKJV

Introduction:
A joint resolution of Congress approved in 1950 calls on the president to issue a proclamation urging Americans to observe each Memorial Day as "a day of prayer for permanent peace" and setting a time for that prayer.

President Bush has designated Memorial Day as a "day of prayer for permanent peace" and wants Americans to unite in prayer at 11:00 a.m. local time.

Bush also urged Americans to observe the National Moment of Remembrance, also on Memorial Day, which, by law, takes place at 3:00 p.m. local time.

Some 48 million Americans have served in the military, and more than one million have died defending the country's liberty, according to the proclamation.
 
 

1.    The . . Identification of the Problem In America. v 14 a 



        " If My people who are called by My name. . . "

Introduction:
Who is to blame for the woes in America? I will say God's People. Who are God's People? Not all people are God's people in the spiritual sense, because many hate Him, others reject Him, and still others simply ignore Him. Only those who have been born again have a relationship with God as child to his father. John 8:39-45

A.    Identified In . . The Old Testament People of God . . Israel.

Jer 2:10-13 10 For pass beyond the coasts of Cyprus and see, Send to Kedar and consider diligently, And see if there has been such a thing. 11 Has a nation changed its gods, Which are not gods? But My people have changed their Glory For what does not profit. 12 Be astonished, O heavens, at this, And be horribly afraid; Be very desolate," says the LORD. 13 "For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, And hewn themselves cisterns--broken cisterns that can hold no water. NKJV

        1. Evil # One of Israel:
                "They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters,. . . "

        2. Evil # two of Israel:
            ". . . And hewn themselves cisterns--broken cisterns that can hold no water. "

        3. There are Similarities In Christianity

B. Identified In . . The New Testament People of God . . Christians. 1 Co 5:1
        It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and such sexual immorality as is not even named among the Gentiles--that a man has his father's wife! NKJV

Illustration
On television the other night Robin Williams told of a child being frisked by an airline attendant said "hey who do you think you are a Catholic Priest."

News Media attacks the Priest for their sexual sins and attacks the Boy Scouts for their standards against Homosexuals.     Does That make sense?

Application

The prominent sins of Jim Bakker, Jimmy Swaggert, and Catholic Priest do not represent the majority of Christians. But far too many Christians are nonchalant about sin.
 
 

2.    The . . Ingredients of the Problem In America. v 14 b



        ". . . will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, . . . "

A.    An Ingredient of the Problem . . A Lack of Humility.
        ". . . will humble themselves,. . . "

        1.    Two men in our church talking about a person they know said "he won't hardly ever admit
                he was wrong. He more likely will just get mad.

        2.    Some of us have such sneaky pride.

Illustration
My Last pastorate responded less to my preaching and teaching about financial stewardship than any church I have pastored. The offerings doubled and we raised $450,000.00 for our building project but they could have done more. Now during the interim pastors ministry they seem to be responding very well. My first reaction indicated my pride was hurt.

Then I backed away and said well Jim McCullen there is your sneaky pride. I had to say to my self yes that's what it is. Plain old sneaky pride. A lack of humility. A dependance upon me rather than God. I need to respond well ans say "to God be the Glory." Some planted I watered the interim sprinkled fertilizer but God Gave the Increase. I have Emailed him thanking him for the good job he has done and continues to do.

B. An Ingredient of the Problem . . A Lack of Prayer.
            ". . . and pray. . . "

        1.    Have you noticed how we can talk about prayer more than we pray?
        2.    Have you noticed how we can talk before and after prayer more than we prayed?

Illustration
The four (4) pastors in town have started meeting for prayer at 6:30 AM on Monday Morning. We talk for about 10 to 15 minutes then we pray for about 15 to 20 minutes. Then we talk to one another for about 10 to 15 minutes. We do more talking to one another than to God. Can there be a lack of praying even in our prayers.

Poem

I often say my prayers but do I ever pray?
And do the wishes of my heart go with the words I say?

I may as well knee down and pray to gods of stone
Than to offer to the Living God a prayer of words alone.


 


C. An Ingredient of the Problem . . A Lack of Seeking God.
        ". . . and seek My face,. . . "

Henry Blackaby states ... "My heart is very heavy about the day in which we live, primarily because people do not even recognize that they have moved from what God wants them to do."

        1.    Why does it say seek God's face?
                a. What can you receive from a face?
                b. You can really receive the presence of God by looking into His face.
                c. You can tell the mood etc. from the face.

        2.    Like a plant seeks sunlight we should seek God.
                a.    Ps 42:1 As the deer pants for the water brooks, So pants my soul for You, O God. NKJV

Illustration
Several years ago my granddaughter Brittanie as a 3 year old said as she and her dad met me at the airport; I am not supposed to ask you what you got us. She was more interested in my gifts than me and I understand that from a 3 year old but I wonder if some of us are guilty of that with God.

D. An Ingredient of the Problem . . A Lack of Repentance.
        ". . . and turn from their wicked ways, . . ."

Illustration
This week as I was surfing the airwaves I saw a documentary about a very wealthy man and his establishment of a retreat and entertainment place for Billionaires. It is called the Billionaire's Club. There was all sorts of sinful practices and a great number of people attracted to it.

It seems the world constantly looks for new channels for the old sins
 
 
 

3.    The . . Intention of God In the Problem In America. v 14 c -15



    ". . . then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 15 Now My eyes
    will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place. NKJV

A.    The . . Agenda of God's Intention. v 14 c
        ". . . then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

        1.    When will God's Agenda take place? "THEN!"
            a.    God is waiting to respond.
            b.    He Desires to Forgive.
            c.    He Desires to Heal Our Land.

B.    The . . Attentiveness of God's Intention. v 15
            Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place.

        1.    NOW!
            a.    God says ". . . My eyes will be open. . . "
            b.    God says ". . . My ears will be attentive to prayer. . . "
                1)    Have you ever waited for a phone call?
                2)    Did you ever eagerly await a letter?

Illustration
A freshman at Eagle Rock Junior High won first prize at the greater Idaho Falls Science Fair, April 26, 1997. He was attempting to show how conditioned we have become to alarmist practicing junk science and spreading fear of everything in our environment. In his project he urged people to sign a petition
demanding strict control or total elimination of the chemical "dihydrogen monoxide."

And for plenty of good reasons, since it:
    Can cause excessive sweating and vomiting.
    It is a major component in acid rain.
    It can cause severe burns in its gaseous state.
    Accidental inhalation can kill you.
    It decreases effectiveness of automobile brakes.
    It has been found in tumors of terminal cancer patients.
 
He asked 50 people if they supported a ban of the chemical. Forty-three said yes, six were undecided.
Only One knew that the chemical was H2O (water).
The title of his prize winning project was, "How Gullible Are We?" He feels the conclusion is obvious

Application

America is trying to solve problems under the wrong assumptions. She need to listen to God!
 

Conclusion

THE REMEDY TO THE PROBLEM
 

Willingly Turn to Jesus

Mt. 23:37 "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! NKJV
 

Mt 22:2-4 2 "The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son, 3 and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come. NKJV

I pray you are willing to turn to Jesu today.