God Knows Our Heart

by Josh Hollingsworth
(Bryant, Arkansas)

II Kings 5:21-27


INTRODUCTION:
Webster’s Dictionary’s definition of motive is something, as a need or desire, that impels or incites a person to a certain course of action or behavior. As Christians, parents, sons and daughters, students, or as friends what in our lives motivates us from day to day? Are we motivated to do good or bad? Are we motivated by power, money, or fame? Or does God motivate us?

The Bible talks about having the right motives. We see in II Kings 5:21-27 that we should have the right motives for serving God. Having the wrong motives can lead to deceit, greed, and lying. In the same way deceit, greed, and lying lead to punishment from God. We see in this passage how Gehazi gave in to the wrong motives and was punished by God.

THEME: ARE OUR MOTIVES RIGHT FOR SERVING GOD?

I. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE ARE DECEITFUL. (vs. 21-22)

  A. Deceit Will Cause Us To Lie (vs. 22)
    1. Gehazi lied about what Elisha had said.
    2. Gehazi lied for personal gain.

  B. Our Deceit Will Affect Others. (vs. 22)
    1. Gehazi’s deceit could have affected Naaman.

NOTE: Gehazi wrongly implied that money could be exchanged for God’s free gift of healing and mercy. How many times in our churches had this happened? Instead of loving everyone as God has loved us, we have our favorites, or those who we selfishly use for our own personal gain. Maybe it is a doctor, lawyer, or mechanic in the church that the pastor or others selfishly use for personal gain.

    2. Gehazi’s deceit could have affected Elisha’s testimony.
      a.) His testimony with unbelievers.

NOTE: At this time false prophets were selfishly taking others money and giving the Prophetic office a bad name. True prophets should avoid conduct that might be misunderstood as self-seeking.

      b.) His testimony with believers.

NOTE: But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak. (I Corinthians 8:9)

  C. Deceit Will Affect Our Relationship With God. (vs. 22)
    1. Deceit will make personal gain more important than serving God.
    2. Deceit will make us choose between God and worldly things.

NOTE: We can’t serve both God and money for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. (Matthew 6:24)

T.S. ARE OUR MOTIVES RIGHT FOR SERVING GOD?

I. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE ARE DECEITFUL. (vs. 21-22)

II. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE ARE GREEDY. (vs. 23-24)

  A. Greed Will Make Us Think Of Ourselves. (vs. 23-24)
    1. Gehazi thought of only himself.

NOTE: 37 Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. (Matthew 22: 37-39)

    2. J.O.Y.

NOTE: J.O.Y. is an acrostic for Jesus-first, Others-second, and Yourself-last.

  B. Greed Is A Worldly Response. (vs. 23-24)
    1. The world is motivated by personal gain.
    2. Christians should be motivated by love and devotion to God.

  C. Greed Will Make Us Steal. (vs. 24)
    1. Gehazi took what was not his.
    2. God’s blessing for Gehazi being a helpful servant was taken away.

T.S. ARE OUR MOTIVES RIGHT FOR SERVING GOD?

I. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE ARE DECEITFUL. (vs. 21-22)

II. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE ARE GREEDY. (vs. 23-24)

III. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE LIE. (vs. 25-26)

  A. Lying Leads To More Sin. (vs. 25-26)
    1. Gehazi lied to cover his first lie.
    2. Gehazi lied because he knew he had done wrong.

  B. Lying Might Fool Some People. (vs. 25-26)
    1. Gehazi’s lies fooled Naaman.
    2. Gehazi’s lies did not fool Elisha.

  C. Lying Will Not Hide Anything From God. (vs. 25-26)
    1. Even if we think that no one knows, God will know.
    2. God will judge us for what we have done.

T.S. ARE OUR MOTIVES RIGHT FOR SERVING GOD?

I. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE ARE DECEITFUL. (vs. 21-22)

II. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE ARE GREEDY. (vs. 23-24)

III. OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT IF WE LIE. (vs. 25-26)

IV. WHEN OUR MOTIVES FOR SERVING GOD ARE NOT RIGHT WE WILL BE PUNISHED. (vs. 27)

  A. Our Punishment Is That We Will Reap What We Sow. (vs.27)
    1. Gehazi was punished for his sin.

NOTE: If we sow sin we will reap punishment.

    2. God punished Gehazi with Naaman’s leprosy.

  B. Our Punishment Is That We Will Reap More Than We Sow. (vs. 27)
    1. Gehazi’s personal gain brought about his physical punishment of leprosy.

NOTE: The pleasures of sin for a season. (Hebrews 11:25)

    2. Gehazi’s family was cursed for his sin.

  C. Our Punishment Is That We Reap Longer Than We Sowed. (vs.27)
    1. Gehazi’s one day of fulfillment brought about a lifetime of punishment.
    2. Gehazi’s sin not only affected him but his entire family forever.

CONCLUSION
Are our motives right for serving God? Our motives for serving God are not right if we are deceitful. Our motives for serving God are not right if we are greedy. Our motives for serving God are not right if we lie. When our motives for serving God are not right we will be punished.

Our motives for serving God are not right if we are deceitful. Do you have deceit in your life? Is your deceit causing you to lie and is it affecting yourself and others? Will you come today and ask God to help you change your life around?

Our motives for serving God are not right if we are greedy. Are you a greedy person who only thinks of themselves? Does greed cause you to steal? Will you confess this to God today?

Our motives for serving God are not right if we lie. Is your life one big lie? Will you ask God to help you stop lying and tell the truth?

When our motives for serving God are not right we will be punished. Is God punishing you even while we speak? Will you ask God for the right motives today so that you will not have to be punished any more.


Note from Mark: Thanks Josh. Great sermon on the motives of our heart. We can sometimes hide those from others but never from God.

Comments for God Knows Our Heart

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Sep 23, 2013
Sermon Motives of the Heart
by: Anonymous

This is such a rich, good message. As the Psalmist once said "there is not a word, even my thoughts are not kept from thee." My husband passed away a little over a year ago; he was a Baptist Minister and I am seriously thinking about putting his sermons in print. They too are so rich in truths.
But I'm questioning my motives, it isn't for monetary gain, fame or ?, but that those who read his truths will either come to know the Lord or will be strengthened in the inner man.

You know the enemy of our souls takes ALL that is good, pure and glorious and tries ever so hard to divert or pervert truth.

Thank you again for this strengthening message and may God Bless ___ SC

Jun 20, 2012
Great Sermon
by: Rev James Smith

Great Read, Keep up the great work..Look forward to reading more of your Sermons..
~God Bless~

Mar 16, 2009
Good stuff
by: Michael Elder

Whenever someone behaves in a manner that brings shame and reproach upon themselves and others, we often ask, "What were they thinking?" Truth is, it's not the thoughts of their mind that caused the sin, but rather, it's the motive of their heart. Good stuff Josh!

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