A BRAND NEW TOUCH
Sunday Morning Sermon
August 2, 1998
Fair Ave Baptist Church
Twelve years ago, August 3, 1986, I walked through those doors for the very first time.
Several times throughout my life I had passed through Gainesville and on a couple or so occasions I had stopped.
My first trip to Gainesville came in the spring of 1974 when my pastor, Don Newsome, was preaching a revival at Bible Baptist Church here in town, back when Chuck Bishop was pastor. We brought a bus load from Burleson, Texas, all the way to Gainesville to hear our pastor.
My next trip was passing through to Oklahoma City on our honeymoon in December 1974. On the way back home to Burleson we stopped in Gainesville to fill the car up with gas.
In the fall of 1977 my wife and I were taking a girls singing group to Sherman one Sunday night and we were going through Gainesville. The girls were going to sing and I was going to preach. Just south of town we had a blowout on our church van and like usual, no spare tire. We called everyone in town we could get a hold of to try to find another tire but to no avail. We had to load everyone up in another van that was traveling with us and another car and go on to Sherman. My dad and another man came the next day with a spare and brought the van home.
Then in February 1985 I took a basketball team to Springfield, Missour, for a basketball tournament and we made our way through Gainesville coming and going. We didn’t win a game in the tournament. It was terrible.
Somewhere in there, I don’t remember the dates, but my mother and brother came to this very church for a wedding for my cousin. My cousin, Larry Culp married Kathy Amoroso and my Uncle Jeff performed the ceremony.
Gainesville was just another town of many when I received a phone call from David Bishop on Wednesday, July 30, asking me if I would be interested in preaching in view of a call as pastor. I told him I would come preach and we would let God work it out.
That Sunday, August 3, 1986, God reached down and gave me a brand new touch. That day God gave me a burden for the Fair Avenue Baptist Church and the city of Gainesville.
That afternoon, as my wife and I ate lunch at the Sikes’ home, God gave me assurance that this was the place for us. That evening after the service when Bro. Sikes ask me to come back the next week, I told him yes. My wife looked at me a few minutes later and said, “Are you sure?” And I said to her, “This is where God wants us.” And the rest is history.
Now, back to our text of Matthew 9, and the women who touched the hem of Jesus’ garment.
She was diseased with “an issue of blood,” some say it might have been leukemia, we don’t know.
But we do know she had a disease. And we know she wanted to touch Jesus, or at least the His garment. She knew in her heart that if she could just touch the garment of Jesus she would be healed.
She said, “I shall be whole,” meaning, I will be completely healed.
And so, she touched the garment of Jesus, and she was healed.
Let’s fastforward to 1998...
Sometimes our lives get diseased by sin,
Sometimes our hearts get full of sin,
Sometimes we need a touch,
Sometimes we need a brand new touch.
Let me talk this morning about three ways in which we might need a new touch.
1. A NEW TOUCH OF DELIGHT
Remember when you were excited about being saved and felt good about it?
Perhaps you have lost the joy of God’s great salvation...
Perhaps time has taken its toll...
Perhaps you need a new touch this morning...
And remember when you had some delight in the Lord?
...delight in the Lord and His Word?
Psalm 1:2, “But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in his law doth he meditate day and night.”
Psalm 37:4, “Delight thyself also in the Lord...”
Psalm 40:8, “I will delight to do thy will, O my God...”
Psalm 119:16, “I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.”
Psalm 119:47, “And I will delight myself in thy commandments, which I have loved.”
Psalm 119:70, “...but I delight in thy law.”
There that word “delight” is.
Do those verses describe our lives?
Are we still delighted about our salvation?
Are we still delighted about the Lord?
Are we still delighted about the Word?
Do we need a touch from the Lord this morning to make us whole again?
Is that our prayer and desire today?
Lord, give me a brand new touch.
Lord, touch my heart this morning and give me back my delight.
Lord, touch me today.
Lord, touch me today, please.
Give me the delight I once had.
Lord, will you, please?
2. A NEW TOUCH OF DEVOTION
Not only do we need a new touch of delight, we need a new touch of devotion.
Have we lost the joy of salvation?
Have we lost our love for the Lord?
How is our prayer life?
How is our devotion to the Lord?
Are we spending time in His Word?
Are we spending time in prayer?
I wonder how many of us spent time in prayer to the Lord during the past week?
Do we love Him like we should?
Then why don’t we talk to Him like we should?
Mark 12:33, “And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength...”
with all the heart we have,
with all the understanding we’ve got,
with all the soul we have down inside,
with all the strength and fiber of our lives,
do we love Him like we should?
When was the last time you read your Bible?
I mean, when was the last time you really read your Bible ... and enjoyed it ... and told someone about it?
I wonder how many people sitting here this morning read at least five chapters in their Bibles since last Sunday? Just five chapters...
Have we lost our devotion?
Do we need a new touch this morning?
Do we need for the Saviour to reach down and touch our hearts this morning and restore our delight in the Lord?
Do we need for Jesus to reach down and touch our hearts and restore our devotion?
Lord, touch my heart this morning.
Lord, touch my heart and help me to get back to the Bible.
Lord, touch my heart and help me study like I know I should.
Lord, please, touch me.
Lord, I need a brand new touch.
Do we need a brand new touch this morning?
3. A NEW TOUCH OF DEDICATION
I think we would all agree that we could use a new touch of delight, a delight in our salvation, a joy in the Lord.
I think we would all agree that we could use a new touch from the Lord in the area of devotion, devotion to His Word and to Him through prayer.
And I think we would all agree that we could use a new touch from Jesus in the area of dedication and service to Him.
Rom. 12:1, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”
Eph. 6:7, “With good will doing service, as to the Lord...”
Rev. 2:19, “I know thy works, and charity, and service...”
How is our service to the Lord?
“Service” being defined as “serving, obedience to the Lord, working for God.”
Did we once serve Him, but now we don’t?
Did we once teach a Sunday School class, but now we don’t?
Don’t you miss it, just a little?
Did we once sing in the choir, but now we don’t?
Don’t you miss it, just a little?
Did we once work on a bus route, but now we don’t?
Have we stopped working in the Lord’s service?
Did we once knock doors and invite people to church, but now we don’t?
Did we once help in some capacity of another, but now we don’t?
Have we lost our joy, our delight in the Lord?
Have we lost our devotion, our love for the Lord?
Have we stopped our dedication, our service, our work for the Lord?
Is there someone here this morning who is saying to themselves:
Yes, Preacher, I’ve lost my delight, my joy in the Lord.
Or, Yes, Preacher, I’ve lost my devotion, I’m not reading my Bible like I should, I’m not praying like I should.
Or, Yes, Preacher, I’ve lost my dedication, I’m not serving the Lord like I should, like I once did,
Yes, Preacher, I’ve lost my dedication, I’m not as faithful as I used to be,
I need a new touch,
I need a brand new touch from Jesus.