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LEARNING BY EXPERIENCE
Genesis 30:25-36 Text verse 27
Genesis 30:25-36 Text verse 27
(Genesis 30:27) And Laban said unto him, I pray thee, if I have found favour in thine eyes, tarry: for I have learned by experience that the LORD hath blessed me for thy sake. (KJV)
What is the best way to learn something? We have all heard the expressions: school of experience, school of hard knocks, hind sight better than foresight, experience is the best teacher.
It is easy to read about the best way to do something, but until you put into practice what you have read and actually do that thing yourself you still do not know how to do it. If you want to know how to do something, start doing it.
I. IT PAYS TO ASSOCIATE WITH THE RIGHT PEOPLE.
“I have learned by experience that the Lord hath blessed me for thy sake.”
Let us notice this statement made by Laban and apply it to ourselves. Laban was blesse of the Lord because of Jacob being there. God had looked favorably on Jacob.
Think about this and thank God for his blessings and be glad for the association of God’s people. They are a people of convictions. A people that love God. A people that appreciate the church and want God’s way. Our association with God’s people bring about God’s blessing. We can have all of God we want, but if we want all of God we can get we appreciate God’s people. Spiritual camp meetings, revivals, saints of God, standards becoming to the holiness way, these all contribute to the blessings of God.
II. THINK ABOUT EXPERIENCE.
We have all heard the expressions: experience is the best teacher, we learn best by experience, experience is God’s university. We learn by experience when nothing else will teach us. People can tell us and we can see what happens to the other fellow but we learn best by experience.
Experience plants things on our hear and mind until we can’t forget them.
There are different kinds of experiences. Some are pleasant and some are unpleasant. Some we would like to go through again and some we want to stay as far away from as possible. Some we like to talk about and others we don’t even want to think about.
The school of experience is sometimes run with a big stick and we are disciplined forcibly. But we value those things we experience more than those things that we just hear or read about.
I’m glad salvation is an experience. It is something real that implants itself on our soul and we value it. I have read about God and heard about God and have an appreciation for God and spiritual things but those things mean far more to me because I have and experience of salvation and have experienced and known God.
Now experience teaches us that if we aren’t diligent and keep spiritual we naturally slide toward indifference. Whether we show it outwardly or not there comes an attitude within us of laxity and looseness that just sails along and becomes complacent in our spiritual life. Not really taking a stand for the things God once laid on our hearts and we drift into the attitude of the world, if not the actions of the world, eat drink and be merry.
But then comes the sudden jolt. A realization of the loss of the experience we used to have with the Lord. The fellowship is gone. The blessing isn’t there. And we realize through experience that we missed it. We have a brighter mission and a more noble destiny than to just drift along. We have something much better than just satisfying the flesh.
The experience teaches us that our natural tendency is toward pride. The world teaches that we are to think well of ourselves. We cease to give God the glory and the honor due Him and give Him His rightful place pride takes over and we exalt self instead of God.
When we look at what we have done, how we did it, what strides we have made, and when we fall that we realize what we have done. We began to realize through experience that these things are in our hearts.
Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel 4) built a great kingdom and exalted himself until God brought him down and he was drive out to eat grass with the cattle and live like an animal instead of a king.
The Word says that he was brought to the place where he praised and honored God.
It is when our world comes tumbling down that we realize we aren’t anything and we need God.
“All, all below must fade and die,
The dearest hopes we cherish;
Scenes touched with brightest radiancy,
All are decreed to perish.”
III. WE LEARN BY EXPERIENCE THE SINFULNESS OF OUR HEARTS.
The Bible declares our sin.
(Romans 3:23) For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (KJV)
The world in all its sin an degradation shows how sin operates. But even if all this failed to reveal it to us, experience convinces us of the sinfulness of the human heart.
I never want to be a person who can look with complacency on my own heart. The devil would cause us to think, “I’m as good as the rest,” “I haven’t done as bad,” “I’m a pretty good fellow.” Experience tells us that this is the way of a lost soul.
(2 Corinthians 10:12) For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. (KJV)
Experience needs to remind us of neglect of duty: wrong done, unkind words spoken, unkind suspicions entertained, violations of God’s law and things left undone that we know we should do.
(James 4:17) Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin. (KJV)
Experiences teaches us the sinfulness of the heart.
Experience would lead us to do something about our condition. It is too bad that we use so little of what we learn. Talk to people about the Lord and their standing before Him and experience tells them they can’t deny the truth but yet they refuse to use what experience has taught them. They acknowledge what is right but don’t do it.
IV. EXPERIENCE TEACHES US THAT LIFE WITHOUT GOD IS VANITY.
It is empty and unsatisfying.
We look at the corpse in the funeral home and from that experience we learn that man leaves this world just like he came into it. With nothing. All we take with us is our soul to present before God. What about our life? How full is it with those things which count for eternity? Stop and think – is our life full of those things that really count for eternity? The things we think are so important, do they make a difference when it comes to eternity?
Some of us have had some of this world’s goods and for one reason or another have either used them all up or lost them and when we look back we realize the emptiness of it all.
We need to set our hearts on something higher than what this world has to offer. We need something that puts meaning into life. A misappropriated life is necessarily unsatisfying.
Ahab with his kingdom still was not satisfied, he wanted Naboth’s vineyard. (I Kings 21).
Alexander with the then known world conquered yearned for another world to conquer.
But Paul could say, (Philippians 4:11) Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. (KJV)
V. WE LEARN BY EXPERIENCE THE REALITIES AND VALUES OF SALVATION.
Job had this experience.
(Job 19:25) For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: (KJV)
When things were the darkest and the times the hardest, experience taught Job and very other person who has a real trust in God that there is a God in heaven who has redeemed our souls by His only Son..
Paul in his trying times could say:
(2 Timothy 1:12) For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. (KJV)
The experience on the Damascus road had taught him this. His recognizing the Lord and surrendering to Him had been an experience that had taught him this.
What kind of and experience would you have if you would say from your heart, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?”
It changed Paul. Made a new creature out of him. It brought reality of God to his soul. Christian experience is something that we can keep with us permanently.
“My soul demands reality (experience)
He’s real to me, He’s real to me-
The Son of God is real to me;
My soul demands reality,
The Son of God is real to me.”
V. EXPERIENCE TEACHES US THAT SALVATION IS NOT ONLY REALITY BUT IT SETS A STANDARD OF VALUES FOR US.
Our values change when we really surrender to the Lord. Those things I once loved I now hate and those things I once hated I now love.
My attitude has now change toward the church and God’s people,. I don’t know when I’ve appreciated our connection, our camp meeting, and the things of God like I do now. Values are changed when one becomes a real Christian. The things that matter are things that count for eternity.
(Revelation 2:10) …. be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. (KJV)
Value is put on faithfulness. Value is put on the smile of God. Value is put on what we feel in our hearts.
By experience we learn the reality of eternity and the hope we have.
(John 14:2-3) In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. (KJV)
VI. WE LEARN BY EXPERIENCE THE FAITHFULNESS OF GOD.
We recognize the checking of the Holy Spirit. We learn what it means when God disciplines us.
He lets us know when we are drifting away and not as keen in our experience as we have been.
He lets us know when our influence for good has waned because we haven’t avoided the appearances of evil.
Experience teaches us that God loves us.
In closing let us remember that what we learn even from experience does us no good unless it is used or put in practice. There are many men spending their lives in prison right now that knew through experience that they shouldn’t do what they did that pur them behind bars.
There are untold scores of people in a lost eternity who are there not because they didn’t know better but because they didn’t heed what they knew through experience.
There are untold multitudes of families who have lost their children from God and heaven not because they didn’t know but because they took little heed to the experience God has allowed to come into their lives.
God is doing all He can to get us to heaven. Those things that happen to us throughout our life do not happen by chance. It is the providence of God trying to bring us to Himself and prepare us for heaven.
Looking back over your life, what does experience tell you, you ought to do?
Are you putting into practice those things learned from experience?
“It pays to serve Jesus, It pays every day.
It pays every step of the way. Tho the pathway to glory may sometimes be drear, you’ll be happy each step of the way.”
- Posts : 1353
Join date : 2011-12-31
Age : 62
Location : Eastern OH
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