Sunday, May 26, 2019

Sunday Sermon Outline: The Samaritans' Religion

"The Samaritans' Religion"
2 Kings 17:24‑41

Introduction: 2 Kings 17:24-41, “[24] The king of Assyria brought men from Babylon and from Cuthah and from Avva and from Hamath and Sephar-vaim, and settled them in the cities of Samaria in place of the sons of Israel. So they possessed Samaria and lived in its cities. [25] At the beginning of their living there, they did not fear the LORD; therefore the LORD sent lions among them which killed some of them. [26] So they spoke to the king of Assyria, saying, “The nations whom you have carried away into exile in the cities of Samaria do not know the custom of the god of the land; so he has sent lions among them, and behold, they kill them because they do not know the custom of the god of the land.”
     “[27] Then the king of Assyria commanded, saying, “Take there one of the priests whom you carried away into exile and let him go and live there; and let him teach them the custom of the god of the land.” [28] So one of the priests whom they had carried away into exile from Samaria came and lived at Bethel, and taught them how they should fear the LORD.”
     “[29] But every nation still made gods of its own and put them in the houses of the high places which the people of Samaria had made, every nation in their cities in which they lived. [30] The men of Babylon made Succoth-benoth, the men of Cuth made Nergal, the men of Hamath made Ashima, [31] and the Avvites made Nibhaz and Tartak; and the Sepharvites burned their children in the fire to Adrammelech and Anammelech the gods of Sepharvaim. [32] They also feared the LORD and appointed from among themselves priests of the high places, who acted for them in the houses of the high places. [33] They feared the LORD and served their own gods according to the custom of the nations from among whom they had been carried away into exile.”
     “[34] To this day they do according to the earlier customs: they do not fear the LORD, nor do they follow their statutes or their ordinances or the law, or the commandments which the LORD commanded the sons of Jacob, whom He named Israel; [35] with whom the LORD made a covenant and commanded them, saying, “You shall not fear other gods, nor bow down yourselves to them nor serve them nor sacrifice to them. [36] “But the LORD, who brought you up from the land of Egypt with great power and with an outstretched arm, Him you shall fear, and to Him you shall bow yourselves down, and to Him you shall sacrifice. [37] “The statutes and the ordinances and the law and the commandment which He wrote for you, you shall observe to do forever; and you shall not fear other gods. [38] “The covenant that I have made with you, you shall not forget, nor shall you fear other gods. [39] “But the LORD your God you shall fear; and He will deliver you from the hand of all your enemies.””
     “[40] However, they did not listen, but they did according to their earlier custom. [41] So while these nations feared the LORD, they also served their idols; their children likewise and their grandchildren, as their fathers did, so they do to this day.”

I. A Religion of Fear  vs. 25, 28-29
     Verse 25, “At the beginning of their living there, they did not fear the LORD; therefore the LORD sent lions among them which killed some of them.”
     Verse 28, “So one of the priests whom they had carried away into exile from Samaria came and lived at Bethel, and taught them how they should fear the LORD.”
     “[29] But ...” “They worshiped the LORD, but …” (v. 33, NIV).
     Verse 34, “To this day they do according to the earlier customs: they do not fear the LORD, nor do they follow their statutes or their ordinances or the law, or the commandments which the LORD commanded the sons of Jacob, whom He named Israel.”

     “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge” (Proverbs 1:7).
     Ecclesiastes 12:13, “The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.”
     “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28).
     1 John 4:16‑18, “We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. [17] By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world. [18] There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.”

II. A Religion of Form  vs. 33-34
     "[33] They feared the LORD and served their own gods according to the custom of the nations from among whom they had been carried away into exile. [34] To this day they do according to the earlier customs: they do not fear the LORD, nor do they follow their statutes or their ordinances or the law, or the commandments which the LORD commanded the sons of Jacob, whom He named Israel."

     Matthew 15:7‑9, “You hypocrites, rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you: [8] ‘THIS PEOPLE HONORS ME WITH THEIR LIPS, BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR AWAY FROM ME. [9] BUT IN VAIN DO THEY WORSHIP ME, TEACHING AS DOCTRINES THE PRECEPTS OF MEN.’”
     “Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD, O my soul! [2] I will praise the LORD while I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being. [3] Do not trust in princes, In mortal man, in whom there is no salvation. [4] His spirit departs, he returns to the earth; In that very day his thoughts perish. [5] How blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, Whose hope is in the LORD his God, [6] Who made heaven and earth, The sea and all that is in them; Who keeps faith forever” (Psalm 146:1-6).

III. A Religion of Futility  vs. 40-41 
     “[40] However, they did not listen, but they did according to their earlier custom. [41] So while these nations feared the LORD, they also served their idols; their children likewise and their grandchildren, as their fathers did, so they do to this day.”

     Matthew 6:24, “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other.”
     “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. … “You shall not follow other gods, any of the gods of the peoples who surround you, [15] for the LORD your God in the midst of you is a jealous God; otherwise the anger of the LORD your God will be kindled against you, and He will wipe you off the face of the earth” (Deuteronomy 6:5, 14‑15).
     “Therefore, COME OUT FROM THEIR MIDST AND BE SEPARATE,” says the Lord. “AND DO NOT TOUCH WHAT IS UNCLEAN; And I will welcome you. [18] And I will be a father to you, And you shall be sons and daughters to Me,” Says the Lord Almighty” (2 Corinthians 6:17-18).
     “You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4).
     “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness” (Matthew 6:33).

Conclusion: 1 Kings 18:21, “How long will you hesitate between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.”


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