Radcliff United Methodist Church
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Horse Sense: A Sure Bet - May 11, 2014

Thursday, May 15, 2014 View Comments Comments (0)
                               “A SURE BET”

                                Psalm 20:6-7

 

** IS THERE ANY SUCH THING AS A SURE BET?**

 

 Some would say “Death and Taxes” are the only sure things. Other folks have put big money on big schemes that were sure to return a big profit, only to see their investment disappear. Thousands of people just “knew they had the winning horse” last week, and ended up with worthless, losing, pieces of paper called betting slips. People “bet” on careers, people, relationships, wild living, and a million other things…. But each and every one of those things and those people will sometimes fall and fail and mess up. None of the things or people are “sure bets”…. But there is One who is!

     Psalm 20 speaks to us of some of the things the world “bets” on.  “ … some trust in chariots and some in horses…” These are the things of the world…. Career, people, relationships, etc…. The problem is, None of those things are sure bets! Chariots break, and horses fall! There is only One sure bet……The Lord!

 

** THE LORD IS A SURE BET…..BECAUSE HE IS THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN SAVE!**

 

  As human beings, we inherently know that something is wrong. Down deep in our gut, we somehow sense that this world is not all that there is, and all is not right in our souls, and we need some sort of help. That spiritual part of us shows us clearly that  we hunger to know that which is “spiritual”…and so we “bet” on many things to “save” us. Some people are “betting” on religion… “If I just live by the right rules” or “follow the right philosophy” or “say the right prayers in the right way”, salvation will come. Some folks “bet” on all the “good” they do… They spend their lives trying to give more, work enough charities, have a better name than the other guys in the community, and doing some good works, all in the hope that their “good” will outweigh their “bad”. Surely that will be their saving grace. People “bet” on Karma or a certain name of a certain church, or their own “goodness” to save them…. But all of that is putting their money (lives) on the losing horse!

The Word says, “ The Lord gives victory to His anointed”. The Lord! Not someone else. Not good works, or the right prayers, or religion, or goodness… but the Lord! He is the only “sure bet” to save!

  What about the story of one of the greatest heart surgeons the world has ever known. Some of the techniques for the modern by-pass surgery and use by surgeons around the world were invented by this guy. Those techniques are literally being used to save hundreds and thousands of lives in hundreds and thousands of surgeries. How ironic, if he died from a heart-attack. All the training, the wisdom, and the life-saving techniques he spent his life developing…couldn’t save himself.

 Friends, all the things we do in this world can’t save us….ONLY the Lord can do that! He is a sure bet!

 

**THE LORD IS A SURE BET….BECAUSE HE IS THE ONE WHO ANSWERS OUR PRAYERS!**

      As human beings, we try a lot of things to help us through the difficult spots in life. We look to the “self-help” sections in the bookstores, to help us “lose the weight”, “gain the mate” and “influence our fate”. We turn to the wisdom of the world for advice and counseling and guidance. We try to maintain tight control of our world, our work, our family and friends, by making decisions, being the boss, and living out the mantra…”I do it my way”. We live our lives betting that we can make things happen in our own way and on our own strength…. And we lose that bet!

   The Truth is, there is ONLY ONE who is in ultimate control…He is the Lord and He is the One we can turn to. That’s why the Word says, “ He answers him for His heavenly sanctuary with the victorious power of His right hand.”

  He answers…not us…not me…not some other person or thing…but the Lord! The Lord answers prayer!

    How many of you have ever tried to contact a business in order to get a question answered…only to have to go through 20 steps with an automated response system? ( push 1 for________, push 2 for _____________ etc…) It’s so frustrating trying to get answers from a machine when we need a person!

   That’s how many people are living their lives….looking for answers to life’s biggest questions… but looking in the wrong places! That’s a bad bet! The Lord answers prayer….bet on Him!

 

THE LORD IS A SURE BET….BECAUSE HE IS TRUSTWORTHY!**

 We tend to put our trust…in a lot of un-trustworthy things (and people). We trust in our nation and our government to protect and defend and to “look out for the good of the people”. We put our faith in career and money to always pull us through the hard times. We trust family and friends to never hurt us. We place faith in the market, or the economy, or a life-style, or even our “favorite team” to come through and give us happiness. We put our trust in un-trustworthy things!  That’s a bad bet!

   Why? Because only God is ultimately worth our complete and total trust. That’s why the Word says…. “ we trust in the name of the Lord our God!” The Lord always comes through. He always loves. He always gives. He always wants what’s best for His people. We can trust the Lord!

  ** I read the story of a woman who had put all the money she had saved for over 60 years in the hands of a “friend” who was an “investor”. She was guaranteed a “sure return”. The only thing she got returned, however, was the receipt for the investment…

Because he took her money and gambled it all away. 

 

  Now we can look at her and say “you are foolish. Never give everything over to someone. Don’t put all your trust in one place.”

And yet, the whole world is doing the same thing, not with our money, but with our lives. We put our trust in the things of the world…and we lose it all! PUT YOUR TRUST IN THE LORD…HE IS WORTH IT!

 

   Someone once said, “ life is a gamble”.  In some ways, that is true. So the question is….Who are you going to bet on?

I have talked to a lot of people, who are not only Non-believers…but people who are against all religion…. And especially against Jesus. I witnessed to one man for months…. And then ultimately came down to this conversation.  “Let's pretend that I am completely wrong- that there is no God, the Bible isn’t true, and all this Jesus stuff is just a myth. Well, I have lost nothing. Even if it’s not true, I’ve had something to believe in, I’ve been surrounded by people who love me, I’ve had a calling and a purpose in life…I’ve lost nothing!

But now, let’s say that I am right. God is real. The Bible is true, and eternity in heaven or hell depends on your relationship with Him through Jesus. If I’m right…you have lost everything!

Lose everything….lose nothing… which is the better bet?

 

There is only “one sure bet”. His name is Jesus. Do you know Him?

 


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