Sermon delivered at church camp-out May 17, 1997

by Pastor Donald J. Gettys

at Fall Creek Falls State Park, Tennessee

This sermon is taken from Elder Gettys' notes and has not been amplified by the actual sermon given at church camp-out.

Jesus on Six Mountains

WHY did Jesus go off to the outdoor mountains?

(1)- THE FIRST MOUNTAIN: "Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor." Matt 4:8 This was the third temptation of Jesus. On a Mountain. A very exceedingly high mountain. Here was a vast view of the earth. Higher than Everest.

Satan offered Jesus all this by the painless method. Bypass the cross. Bow down just this once to me and avoid the suffering.

Satan comes to us today and suggests the world of politics or wealth or fame can be ours if we just take an illegal bypass. Reach success Satan's way. Put yourself first and God last. You can reach your fantasies if you cut a corner here and shade the truth there. It is OK to set your heart on money, and power.

SPECIAL INSIGHTS COME ON A MOUNTAIN The Devil took Jesus to the mountains. The next time you get an invitation to go to the mountains look at the return address. If Jesus leads you here you will be blessed. If the Devil bids you come here you will lose something of great value. Make sure that when you go to the mountains you take Jesus along.

The devil takes folk to the mountains to destroy them. The Aztec Indians of South America and Mexico built high altars to sacrifice human life to false gods. High places were places of counterfeit worship. They can be places of true worship.

We do not offer human sacrifices but so often we sacrifice our money and our very life for the trivial. We go in big debt to finance trivial pursuits. Do we really need more stuff? Do we really need another trinket? Do we really need more gizmos?

Some mountain men are weird hermits. Ruby Ridge. Waco. Others go to escape religion. You will gain a rich and deep blessing if you go on these outdoor experiences with Jesus. With your Bible. Go to gain a blessing. Come to pray. Meditate on God's second book. Think about His steady flow of blessings.

(2)------THE MOUNT OF BLESSING

Matthew 5:1 Jesus went to a mountain to preach and teach the people. Similar to what we are doing here.

Location: The NW corner of the sea of Galilee not far from Capernaum. On the gentle slope leading all the way up to Mount Tabor and Mount Herman. Here the people came and sat at Jesus' feet. When you come into nature to sit at Jesus feet you receive a rich blessing. HOW DO WE DO THAT?

(3)------THE TRANSFIGURATION!

"After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves." (Matthew 17:1 NIV) Also in-- Mark 9:2 and Luke 9:28 ---Luke adds that they went there to PRAY! Do you ever do that? Do you get more out of prayer when you draw apart from the franklin Planner and the pager and spend alone time with God?

It is neat that Jesus led his disciples up to a high mountain. Jesus was in tip top physical shape. Our Saviour was not a physical or spiritual wimp.

(4)--- THE GALILEE MOUNTAIN after the resurrection

"Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go." (Matthew 28:16 NIV)

Jesus set up this appointment Himself. Matthew 28:10 Jesus told the women: "Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, there they will see me." You must go where Jesus waits. You won't find Jesus off in locations of your own appointment.

Notice a great lesson here. The 11 disciples had already met with Jesus in private. Yet they go to worship Him at the Galilee Mountain. Our communion with God in secret must not supersede our attendance at public Worship. We need both.

That day 500 people came and worshipped Jesus... I Corinthians 15:3-6. verse 3: - "This is a matter of first importance, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures and that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the scriptures. verse 5: - and that he appeared to Peter and then the 11. verse 6: - after that he appeared to more than 500 of the brothers at the SAME TIME.... On the Galilee Mount.

Jesus sets up this meeting. It is in the mountains of Galilee, not in Jerusalem. They spurned Jesus' love. But, Jesus is so kind. Remember His disciples deserted Him. They went off and hid. He sets a time to meet with the disciples to show them He could forgive them. That He still loves them. Jesus is love. If you have spurned Jesus He will take you back.

(5)---- MOUNT CALVARY

Golgotha was the small hill where Jesus gave His life so that each of us might live. MARK 15:22--They brought Jesus to the place called Golgotha, which means the place of the skull...verse, 24 and they crucified Him.

On that mount Jesus completely paid my debt of sin. You may be in hock here. But Spiritually you are debt free because Jesus paid all your spiritual debts.

Paul tells how we can be saved: ROMANS 3:22-24 This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to ALL who believe. For ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. and are justified freely by his grace, through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

HOW ARE WE SAVED? Romans 4:3-5 -- Abraham BELIEVED God and it was credited to him as righteousness! Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift but as an obligation, HOWEVER, TO THE MAN WHO DOES NOT WORK, BUT TRUSTS GOD WHO JUSTIFIES THE WICKED, HIS FAITH IS CREDITED AS RIGHTEOUSNESS!

JOHN 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life!

(6)---MOUNT ZION

The next time we see Jesus on a mountain it will be on Mount Zion-- in Heaven, in the new Jerusalem. "Then I looked, and there before me was the Lamb, standing on Mount Zion, and with him 144,000 who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads." (Revelation 14:1 NIV)

Will you be there? Yes, if you have given your heart to Jesus and accepted Him as your personal Saviour.



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