Spiritual Alzheimer's

Psalm 103:2

Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits:

We all have troubles with memory at times. We often forget others but never want to be forgotten ourselves. We resent it when those who help or go out of our way for don't seem to remember it later.

There is an interesting example in the Old Testament. In 2 Chron. 24:22 Thus Joash the king did not remember the kindness which Jehoiada his father had done to him, but killed his son;

There is also an obvious case in the New Testament. IN Luke 17:17 So Jesus answered and said, "Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine?

But the ultimate forgetfulness is when we forget God.

God accused Israel of forgetting Him and His blessings. Jeremiah 2:32 Can a virgin forget her ornaments, Or a bride her attire? Yet My people have forgotten Me days without number.

God had repeatedly warned the Israelites to be on guard lest they forget:

Deuteronomy 4:9,23 9 "Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. And teach them to your children and your grandchildren, 23 "Take heed to yourselves, lest you forget the covenant of the Lord your God which He made with you, and make for yourselves a carved image in the form of anything which the Lord your God has forbidden you.

Deuteronomy 6:12 "then beware, lest you forget the Lord who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

Deuteronomy 8:11 "Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I command you today,

But most people are selective with what it is they forget. Peter spoke of those who are willfully forgetful.

2 Peter 3:1-5 Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder),2 that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Savior,3 knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts,4 and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation."5 For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water,

As a nation and as a community we also are often forgetful of God's blessings.

We have forgotten how the Lord has come to our aid in times of national crisis. When our nation was founded. When we faced conflict in those early years. The war of 1812, the Mexican-American War. When our Old Settlers came to this area. And then came world war 1 & 2. And even as recently as desert storm I saw a nation that was counting on God. And God has always came through. Of all the nations in the world we are truly blessed. But we have become a nation that increasingly has forgotten their God.

  1. God is God and we are not.
    1. God created the world, it did not evolve.
    2. God formed man and created us in His image.
    3. We are responsible for what we do in our lives.
    4. And on that basis there is a standard we call the Bible according to which we should live and according to which we will be judged.
    5. Luke 9:23And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. 24For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it. 25For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away? 26For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father's, and of the holy angels.
    6. John 12: 48"He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him--the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day.
  2. That we are all alike in that we have offended God and His law and are condemned, but that God has provided for our rescue in the person of His Son Jesus Christ.
    1. We as clergy seldom preach this side of God any more because it does not present a positive image.
      1. We would rather think that God is somehow satisfied with our efforts to be good and over looks our frequent indiscretions.
      2. Most people see God as a very tolerant old man who although He doesn't approve of all that we do, is still not really all that concerned.
    2. We have forgotten the experience of Isaiah when he encountered God and all that he could say was woe is me.
    3. We have forgotten how to repent and admit we are wrong but instead we place the blame on someone else, or minimize our sin.
  3. We have forgotten that Jesus died for our transgressions, our sins.
    1. I know this because this nation has an every increasing number of people who find other things to do rather than worship on Sunday.
    2. God help us all if the Lord should return on a Sunday.
      1. He would find many of His children far from the palace of worship and their minds far from God.
      2. I hear people say that the church is filled with hypocrites and that I will not deny, but we always have room for one more.
    3. We used to be a nation of a Book the Bible.
      1. Today the children think that the epistles were the wives of the apostles if they even know what an apostle is.
      2. Mom and dad don't read the Bible together or to their children.
    4. The churches of our land were once respected and Christians were people of honor.
      1. It used to be that when you bought a house you wanted to know where the nearest school and church was.
      2. Today they want to know where the nearest school and community center is.
      3. Have we forgotten God?
  4. We have forgotten that God loved us so much that He sent His Son to die for us.
    1. What a precious thought.
    2. What a glorious theme.
    3. To think that God would be mindful of us in our sinful ways.
    4. That He would care enough for rebellious mankind that He would send His Son.
    5. That He would save us and prepare us to be with Him forever.
    6. That He continues to work with us, even when we go astray.
  5. But there is also a down side to this.
    1. God is God and will not be mocked.
    2. The nation of Israel forgot God and said He doesn't see.
    3. But read their history.
    4. Read the prophet Isaiah and Jeremiah, and the book of Lamentations.
    5. Psalm 9:17 The wicked shall be turned into hell, And all the nations that forget God.

I encourage you to fight Alzheimer's, spiritual Alzheimer's that is.

Be thankful to God and remember all His benefits.

 

This message was preached at FBC Toulon, by Albert Harmon. See it at http://toulonbaptist.com