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SERMON DATE AND TITLE: 20190707 LET FREEDOM RING!

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       Senior Pastor Phil Roland

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              Pastor Ray Scott

 

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Let Freedom Ring!
SERMON STARTER
 
          The actual Liberty Bell displayed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania wasn't made for that purpose. The citizens of Pennsylvania paid about $300 in 1752 to have it built for their State House. Yearly wages for farm laborers at that time was $100. The Liberty Bell actually weighs just over a ton and is made of bronze, an alloy of mostly copper with 14% manganese, nickel or zinc.  The metal initially was too brittle and had to be recast two times.

          On July 8, 1776, the bell was rung to celebrate the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence. The attempt was made to ring the bell in 1848 and its famous crack appeared. It was much later moved to a pavilion near Independence Hall in 1976 (the bicentennial of the Declaration of Independence). In 2003 the Liberty Bell was relocated to Liberty Bell Center in Independence National Historic Park, where millions of visitors view its famous crack.

          In this country you are free to do what is good. You are free to follow peace and righteousness. You are free to do good to all men. The downside of freedom is that you are free to do that which is evil. The crack in the Liberty Bell is a reminder there is a flaw in liberty. In this country you have the freedom to choose good OR evil. You are given the choice and its up to us to choose the good.
          In the Sheepfold we have chosen freedom to pursue righteousness and peace with all men. Following in the footsteps of Jesus will lead us and others to freedom. My sermon is a scriptural reminder to choose freedom!
Pastor Phil  <><<
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July 7, 2019 - Sheepfold Ministries

Pastor Phil Roland

Let Freedom Ring!
1 Peter 2:13-17

“Freedom to worship God as your conscience dictates is why the founding fathers migrated to this country. The Word of God describes the limits and privileges of our freedom in Christ. Our freedom and respect for mankind is based upon God's Word and His leading.”                           Pastor Phil  <><<

10 And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a Jubilee for you; and each of you shall return to his possession, and each of you shall return to his family. Leviticus 25:10

". . .proclaim liberty throughout all the land. . ."
    Hebrew = x c = De-Ror = Freedom, Deliverance
                              Pictographically = Woman spinning wool
          Greek = afasis = Freedom/Forgiveness/Release animal
                              Pictographically = Man hurling rock

George Washington: 1st President of the USA.
"It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible".
"You do well to learn our ways of life, and above all, the religion of Jesus Christ" (written by his aid).

John Adams: 2nd President of the USA
"I have examined all religions, and the result is that the Bible is the best book in the world".

Thomas Jefferson:
"I am a real Christian - that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus Christ".

17 Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.

FOUR STATEMENTS OF DEPENDENCE ON ALMIGHTY GOD:
I.    HONOR ALL PEOPLE
          Six Reasons we are to honor everyone:
                    A. Mankind are created in God's Image - Gen. 1:26
                    “Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and
            let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the   livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the           ground."
1. We have been given God-Like abilities to choose
LET FREEDOM RING, cont., p. 2

          2. When we choose Him (WWJD) we find true Freedom
B. Mankind are given dominion over the earth - Gen. 1:26-30
        “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him;             male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, "Be             fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the             fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that             moves on the ground." Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant   on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it.             They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground--everything
            that has the breath of life in it--I give every green plant for food."
1. God gave mankind authority to rule nature
          2. With authority comes responsibility, good ecology
          C. God's Word Declares mankind's value - Psalm 8:4-8
“. . .what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care      for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned         him with glory and honor. You made him ruler over the works of your     hands; you put everything under his feet: all flocks and herds, and the   beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim          the paths of the seas.”
1. We are almost like God's Angels: created beings
          2. We are each one unique and valuable to Him
          D. Jesus’ Death Declares us valuable - Peter 1:18-19
“For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold             that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you             from your forefathers,” but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb   without blemish or defect.”
1. Value is established by what you give up to acquire a thing
          2. God gave up His Only Son to purchase your sin-debt
          E. Angels Watch over Mankind - Psalm 91:11,12
 “For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your             ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your             foot against a stone.”
1. We have an angelic security system
          2. That system is armed thru faith in Jesus' atoning blood
          F. Eternity is Prepared for us - John 14:3
“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be             with me that you also may be where I am.”
1. Matt. 25 says we are Christ's Bride according to Custom
          2. When all things are ready the groom returns: Be Ready!
WE SHOW OUR DEPENDENCE ON ALMIGHTY GOD IF WE. . .
II.   LOVE THE BROTHERHOOD - 1 John 3:14
“We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our                          brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates                   his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life                   in him. This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life                      for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.”
LET FREEDOM RING, cont., p. 3

          A. We lay down our lives for each other - John 15:3
                    13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his                             friends.
          B. We meet material needs in each other’s lives – 1 John 3:17
“If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has                     no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him?”

WE SHOW OUR DEPENDENCE ON ALMIGHTY GOD IF WE. . .
III.  FEAR GOD - Psalms 111:10
“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his                 precepts have good understanding. To him belongs eternal praise.”
          A. He is merciful to those who fear Him – Luke 1:50
“His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation.”
          B. We fear Him and We put our trust in Him – Psalm 115:11
”You who fear him, trust in the LORD-- he is their help and shield.”

WE SHOW OUR DEPENDENCE ON ALMIGHTY GOD IF WE. . .
IV.  HONOR THE KING – 1 Peter 2:16,17
“Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as          servants of God. Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king.”
          A. Monarchy - One Reigns
          B. Aristocracy - Elite Few Reign
          C. Anarchy - All Reign
          D. Democracy - Majority Reign
          E. Theocracy - GOD REIGNS
                1. Leaders in a Theocracy SERVE, not RULE – Matt. 20:28
          “the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give                            his life as a ransom for many."
                 2. Leaders pay the price thru SACRIFICE – Jn. 15:13
            “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”
                3. What about You?
                4. Is the Real Liberty of Jesus Ringing in Your Hearts Today?

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LET FREEDOM RING
1 Peter 2:13-17 (NKJV)
13 Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake, whether to the king as supreme,
14 or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good.
15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men--
16 as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God.
17 Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.

 

 

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WHY IS THE LIBERTY BELL CRACKED?
Symbolizes Independence and Freedom in the United States of America
Bells were rung when the Declaration of Independence was read on July 8, 1776.
The citizens of Pennsylvania paid about $300 in 1752 to have it built for their State House. (Yearly wages for farm laborers was $100)
The following Bible verse is on the Bell: “Proclaim Liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof.”
In 1751, the Pennsylvania Provincial Assembly—part of the state’s colonial government—paid around 100 pounds for a large bell to hang in its new State House (later known as Independence Hall). Cast at London’s Whitechapel Bell Foundry, the bell arrived in Philadelphia in August 1752. Because the metal was too brittle, it cracked during a test strike and had to be recast twice. The final version—made of 70 percent copper, 25 percent tin and small amounts of lead, zinc, arsenic, gold and silver—weighed around 2,080 pounds and measured 12 feet in circumference around the lip and 3 feet from lip to crown. On July 8, 1776, the bell was rung to celebrate the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence. After the British invasion of Philadelphia, the bell was hidden in a church until it could be safely returned to the State House. A popular icon of the new nation and its independence, it wasn’t called the “Liberty Bell” until the 1830s, when an abolitionist group adopted it as a symbol of their own cause.
So when did the Liberty Bell get its famous crack? That’s not exactly clear. According to one of many stories, it first cracked back in 1824, during the visit of the Revolutionary War hero Marquis de Lafayette. Another story holds that it fractured later that year, while tolling to signal a fire. One of the most popular legends claims that the bell cracked during the funeral of Chief Justice John Marshall in 1835, but newspaper accounts of the funeral do not mention such an incident. Whatever the truth is, it seems the bell was certainly damaged by 1846, when (according to official city records) Philadelphia’s mayor requested that the bell be rung on George Washington’s birthday. Though attempts were made to repair an existing fracture in the bell for the occasion, and the bell reportedly tolled loud and clear at first, it subsequently cracked beyond repair and had to be taken out of service. After being moved to a pavilion near Independence Hall in 1976 (the bicentennial of the Declaration of Independence), in 2003 the Liberty Bell was relocated to Liberty Bell Center in Independence National Historic Park, where millions of visitors view its famous crack each year.

 

JULY REFLECTIONS
          I went to bed Thursday night (7/4) hearing the celebratory booms of display fireworks being shot off. I reminded me of a number of things as I drifted off to slumber. One was the 40+ years of friendship I've enjoyed with my friend, Ron Wasilchak. When Lois and I came to NE Ohio in the Fall of 1976, I discovered we both indulged in Pyrotechnics (Fireworks).
          Over the years I've been able to pursue my passion for Celebrating the Fourth in three church settings. I've probably introduced hundreds of kids to church picnics, personal and display fireworks. Interestingly, we've never had a serious injury in all those endevours.
          Another thing the display fireworks booms reminded me of is that on the 4th of July we are celebrated our nation's 243rd birthday. Two Hundred and Forty-Three years ago the United States was born: a nation based on the ideals of liberty, responsibility, godliness, and the freedom to become what God intended. The celebration of our nation's birthday is really a celebration of freedom. We celebrate the precious gift of freedom, because of the price others paid for us to enjoy its privilege.
          You see, we must remember that freedom isn't free. Freedom is very expensive. It has cost some people everything, including their lives. The original founding fathers signed the Declaration of Independence pledging, "Our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor."  It cost everyone who signed the document all of the above. Many lost their lives, all lost their fortunes and all were dishonored by their British antagonists. Freedom isn't free, but it is infinitely priceless.
          The United States is known for two things: Christianity and Freedom, especially religious freedom. The foundational story of this country and its founding has always been about freedom to worship God in the manner you choose, not something that is chosen for you. As a people our story is about liberty and our great respect goes to the brave men and women who paid freedom's price with their own blood. We owe them everything.
Pastor Phil  <><<