I HAVE KEPT ME
Sunday Morning Sermon
December 19, 1999
Fair Avenue Baptist Church
In my daily Bible reading last month and again this month I was reading in Psalm 17 and 18. The phrase, “I have kept” seemed to jump out at me. If you remember, I made reference to it several times last month.
After the events of this past week my heart began to search for the right message and this is where God led me.
This matter of staying right with God is a personal thing. It is a personal decision.
It is matter of personal commitment,
A matter of personal character,
A matter of personal consecration,
But that’s another sermon.
I want to start by reading you several verses of Scripture and while I’m reading, please ask the Holy Spirit of God to use these verses to possibly speak to your heart this morning.
25:10, “keep his covenant and his testimonies”
34:13, “keep thy tongue from evil”
37:34, “Wait on the Lord, and keep his way”
KEEP – did you notice that word?
78:7, “but keep his commandments”
99:7, “they kept his testimonies”
103:18, “To such as keep his covenant”
105:45, “keep his laws”
106:3, “Blessed are they that keep judgment”
119:2, “Blessed are they that keep his testimonies”
God wants to bless those who KEEP!
And He will.
119:4, “keep thy precepts diligently”
119:5, “keep thy statutes”
119:17, “keep thy word”
119:44, “So shall I keep thy law”
119:63, “keep thy precepts”
14 verses with the emphasis on the word “KEEP.”
What does that word mean?
The word “keep, kept, keeping, etc.” means “retain, observe, keep diligently, guard.”
What are we keeping?
Are we keeping them?
Are we observing?
Are we retaining?
The commandments of God,
The God we say we love,
The God we say we serve.
These are the things God wants us to do…
Covenant agreement between two parties
Why don’t you make a covenant with God this morning that you are going to do right and stay right?
Precept what was committed to one to
His Way counsels of God
Judgments ordinances, statutes
Statutes something decreed, ordinance, law
Law appointed law
precept of God
Ordinance something decreed, prescribed
The Precious Holy Word of God tells us to keep each and every one of these.
Remember, these are the things God wants … and expects us to do.
We are to retain them,
We are to observe them,
We are to diligently keep them.
Please listen to more Scripture:
39:1, “I will keep my mouth with a bridle”
119:8, “I will keep thy statutes”
119:33, “Teach me, O Lord, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep them it unto the end.”
I want to learn, Lord,
Teach me and I’ll do it.
Is that our prayer?
119:34, “I shall keep thy law”
119:57, “I have said that I would keep thy words”
I WANT to do these things,
I WILL do these things.
119:69, “I will keep thy precepts with my whole heart”
119:88, “so shall I keep the testimony of thy mouth”
119:100, “I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts.”
Keeping the precepts of God gives us understanding,
Something not everyone has.
119:101, “I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word.”
I have – it was my choice!
119:106, “I have sworn, and I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous judgments.”
It is my decision!
These verses teach us that is an individual decision.
The Psalmist said “I will”
“I will keep”
“I have kept,”
“It’s me, it’s me O Lord, standing in the need of prayer.”
115, “I will keep the commandments of my God”
134, “so will I keep thy precepts”
145, “I will keep thy statutes”
146, “I shall keep thy testimonies”
FUTURE – It’s something you have to do NOW and in the future.
I AM GOING TO DO IT!
22, “I have kept thy testimonies”
55, “I…have kept thy law”
56, “I kept thy precepts”
67, “but now have I kept thy word”
168, “I have kept thy precepts and thy testimonies”
It’s something you should have been DOING!
It’s a personal decision,
Have you made that decision?
If I could make it for you, believe me, I would.
But I can’t.
Your mother can’t.
Your daddy can’t.
Your brother can’t.
Your sister can’t.
Your preacher can’t.
BUT YOU CAN!
You have to decide.
You have to have YOUR values.
Psalm 18:21, “For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and have not wickedly departed from my God.”
23, “I was also upright before him, and I kept myself from mine iniquity.”
Psalm 17:4, “Concerning the works of men, by the word of thy lips I have kept me from the paths of the destroyer.”
Did you see that?
I have kept,
I was also upright,
I kept myself from mine iniquity,
I have kept me from the paths of the destroyer.
ME, MYSELF AND I.
What should be my goal in this matter of “KEEPING?”
AVOID THE PATHS OF THE DESTROYER!
It’s up to me as an individual, OTHERWISE, I will end up in the paths of the destroyer.
Psalm 19:11, “Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.”
There is a reward when we keep God’s commands,
THE THINGS THAT GOD WANTS,
THE THINGS GOD EXPECTS,
THE THINGS GOD HAS MANDATED.
THE THINGS GOD HAS DECREED,
Rom. 14:12, “So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.”
Here’s the choice:
Destroyer or Reward.
It’s your decision.
I can’t make it for you.
I can’t believe you want the destroyer.
IF and WHEN your life is destroyed,
IT will be your decision,
IT will be your own fault,
Don’t blame anyone else,
You will either KEEP or not.
Now, quickly, how can I avoid the destroyer,
How can I learn to KEEP the things of God,
What can I do?
Let me call it the Big Five:
1. Read your Bible every day
2. Have a prayer time and pray every day
3. Be in church everytime the doors are opened
4. Learn to tithe and give offerings
5. Go soul winning and tell people about Jesus
One area that will help you in each of these five areas is to get a “Walking with God” notebook. All five of these areas plus many more are covered and dealt with in detail.
Your “Walking with God” Notebook will also make you accountible to yourself.
It will help you KEEP.
You will be able to say, “I have kept me.”
BUT, it’s up to you!