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Memorial Message For Marion Schmitt

December 26, 2012

-MARION SCHMITT MEMORIAL MESSAGE
12-22-12

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We are here this afternoon to pay tribute to Marion Schmitt.  It is much easier preaching at the funeral of someone who has been faithful to the Lord like Marion than one who has not been faithful.

I can say things today at this memorial service that I couldn’t say at other funerals.  The reason for this is that many people leave this world with a questionable record spiritually.   So often for the sake of comforting those who are already grieving, it is not appropriate to give a deep, spiritual challenge.  However, today we have a different situation altogether.  So I think that Marion’s testimony in this life will preach in and of itself–and that preaching will be hard preaching.

When Marion’s husband Selwyn Schmitt passed away, I got some people mad at me after I preached.  There were people who didn’t like what I said.   Because when a person lives right and serves the Lord as they should, other people will get convicted and soon realize they are probably not going to make heaven.

According to the Bible most people are lost and going to hell.  But we have watered down what it takes to get to heaven until almost everyone makes it.  When in fact Jesus said the opposite.  Our Lord said:

Matthew 7:13-14  Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide [is] the gate, and broad [is] the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:    Because strait [is] the gate, and narrow [is] the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

Then someone like Marion Schmitt or Selwyn Schmitt comes along, and a preacher has an opportunity to share their testimony at a funeral.  All people have to do is compare the way they live and serve the Lord to how Marion and Selwyn lived and served the Lord, and then if they have half a brain, they get convicted.  But like always, they blame the preacher for making them feel uncomfortable about themselves.  When in fact it is the Holy Spirit of God who is convicting them.

Here is our text..  and this afternoon the message will be Marion Schmitt’s testimony.

Revelation 14:12 Here is the patience of the saints: here [are] they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
Revelation 14:13 And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed [are] the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.

The Bible says that only saints make it to heaven–or those who die in the Lord–those who work and labor for the Lord. Those who serve the Lord are called his saints and their works do follow them.

No man can be saved in the flesh.  There was probably no greater Christian than the Apostle Paul, and here is what the Apostle Paul said about his flesh:

Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but [how] to perform that which is good I find not.

I.    The First Thing I would like to say about Marion Schmitt Is That She Was A Sinner Like all of Us, and what lies before us is her dead body;  and according to the Bible, those In The Flesh Cannot See God or please God.  God does not promise to save anyone in the flesh.

When God made man..  he made him in His image:

Genesis 1:26  And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his [own] image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God formed man [of] the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

We are frantically trying to understand how to fix the problems of mankind without looking to the One who made man.

Recently we had a tragic shooting in a school in Connecticut. where a gunman killed 26 people.  Instead of asking why people act like this, our President says that we need to blame guns.

Herein lies the problem:  the wise thing to do is look back to the One who designed man in the first place and look at the way He designed him.

The only One who knows how man was made was the same One who made him and was there in the beginning.

Herein lies the problem:  we have rejected God as our Creator.
We have rejected His solution in the Bible..   We call the Bible a fairy tale; we reject Genesis Chapters 1-3

Genesis 1:26  And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his [own] image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

First, God made man in His image..  God said let us make man.  God is made up of a plurality of persons … with one essence..

So He made man Male and Female (and in the process of time he has children).  These two dwell in unity as one.  There are three types of people in the world:

MALE             HUSBANDS
FEMALE        WIVES
CHILDREN    NEUTRAL..  until they get older…

Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God formed man [of] the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

Man is made up in the image of God individually:

BODY      Dust of the ground
SPIRIT    Which comes from the breath of God
SOUL      That part which houses the spirit

The Spirit is the control center of man’s being..

This Spirit the Bible calls the Holy Spirit..  When God made man..  he made him a Saint..  a Holy One..  one who had the Spirit of God…

Now here is what happened…   God Gave man everything–but one thing was off limits …

There was one little thing God withheld from man …

It was symbolized in a tree called the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

God said, I give you everything I created, but one thing is off limits..
What is off limits is for you to decide for yourself what is good and evil.
The day you eat from that tree and try to decide for yourself what is good and what is evil–that very day you will die.

There was another being who made that grand decision to decide for himself what was good and evil, and his name was Satan or Lucifer.

In Genesis 3  he, through craft and cunningness, deceived Eve into eating from that tree, and here is how he did it: he used a messenger to trick Eve.   Adam and Eve never saw Satan.

Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
Genesis 3:2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
Genesis 3:3 But of the fruit of the tree which [is] in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
Genesis 3:4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
Genesis 3:5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
Genesis 3:6 And when the woman saw that the tree [was] good for food, and that it [was] pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make [one] wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

AND WHEN ADAM ATE THE FRUIT (SINCE HE WAS THE ONE WHO RECEIVED THE COMMAND NOT EVE)  …  WHEN ADAM OBEYED HIS WIFE, THEN DEATH ENTERED THE WORLD.

Genesis 3:7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they [were] naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
Genesis 3:8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.

This was the day that the Spirit of God left mankind.

Since man is a three-part being, there are three aspects of death:

1.     SPIRITUAL DEATH HAS ALREADY TAKEN PLACE AND EVERY MAN IS BORN INTO THIS WORLD SPIRITUALLY DEAD–AND OUT OF CONTROL

2.    THE NEXT DEATH IS PHYSICAL DEATH.

3.    THE FINAL DEATH IS SOUL DEATH.

Death is a horrible painful thing, but remember what God told us: death comes because we choose to decide for ourselves what is good and evil apart from the wisdom of God.

I had someone who was dying not long ago; they were in terrible pain. They said, “I just want the pain to stop … I just want to die.”

I said to them, “What makes you think that after you die the pain will stop?  If there is a God, He allows us to experience pain in this life to forewarn us about the eternal pain of hell.”  Now just like people get mad at the doctor for telling them they have cancer,  so too they get mad at the preacher for telling them there is something greater to fear after death–and that is hell.   However, unlike the doctor who has no cure, there is a cure for eternal death:

Matthew 10:28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Every aspect of death is painful..  and since the Soul is eternal, there is an eternal death.

YOU MAY SAY:  I DON’T BELIEVE THIS. IT DOESN’T MATTER WHAT YOU BELIEVE …
YOU CANNOT DENY THAT WITH DEATH COMES PHYSICAL PAIN …

A lot of people don’t like funerals–especially young people–because at a funeral we come face to face with the ultimate reality of death, and every death and funeral in and of itself preaches a message warning us about hell.

Since the first thing man lost was God’s spirit, the first thing God needs to repair to get man back in proper relationship with Himself is the Spirit of God.  In the Flesh no one is saved, and we all will experience Physical death–but we do not have to experience eternal or spiritual death.

So in the flesh, Marion Schmitt was a sinner just like we all are sinners.
And as sinners we are born into this world spiritually dead.
And we all are under the condemnation of Physical death..

BUT GOD LOVES US AND WANTS US TO BE SAVED FROM ETERNAL DEATH …

Which brings us to the Testimony of Marion Scmitt …

This is called a memorial service ..  so as her Pastor I would like to remember the good things she did..  What lies before us is her dead body, and in that body lies all the bad she did.  The wages of sin is this:  DEATH!
But the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

THE FIRST GOOD THING THAT ANY PERSON CAN DO IS TO ASK JESUS INTO THEIR HEART.  THE BIBLE CALLS THIS SALVATION..

II.    THE SECOND THING I WOULD LIKE TO SHARE ABOUT MARION SCHMITT IS THAT SHE WAS A REDEEMED SAINT WHO FOLLOWED HER LORD JESUS CHRIST; THIS IS HER TESTIMONY

1.    Marion Schmitt Was Saved  by the Grace of God and member in good standing in her Church  (Acts   2:41-42  Heb 10:24-25)

We are all born into this life Spiritually dead and in need of redemption.
This is the #1 goal God has for every human being.  God wants to salvage souls.

Marion Schmitt …  many years ago, through the ministry of this church, received Jesus into her heart, was baptized, and then became a faithful member of this church.  She was just a young mother and was concerned about her children and wanted them to be brought up in the Lord; that is when she received Christ.  The Bible calls this being Born Again..

We are born into this world Spiritually dead …
We are born again when we receive God’s Spirit into our hearts.

We are trying all kind of ways to fix the bad behavior of people, but it cannot be fixed until man gets his soul back in harmony with God.

Recently I had a church buy a new digital piano from me because the mother board in the old piano got damaged in a power surge in the church.  The company that made the piano went out of business and stopped making the parts..  So the piano cannot be fixed.

The reason we die physically is because God removed from us certain ingredients and foods that could sustain us.  Try as you will to eat right and exercise–we still die.

In fact one time my wife wanted to try some natural health food products,  so I dropped her off at a health food store.  She came back into the van and asked me why it was that everyone looked at her when she went into the store.  I said,  it is because you are the only one that looks healthy.

The reason is, God is not ready to fix the bod–it needs to be totally rebuilt.  He promises to do that in what the Bible calls the resurrection.

He is interested in first saving our souls.  Many years ago Marion Schmitt asked Jesus into her heart and the Spirit of God came into her life and she was saved.

All her sin lies there in that coffin, but her Spirit which came from God has returned to God.

When a person doesn’t get saved and their spirit is dead, the soul is dead. When the body dies,  their soul continues to be separated from God and goes to that place that is prepared for the devil and his angels–all who have rejected God as the true Author of what is Good and Evil.

Once Marion Schmitt got saved,  she then was able to live her life letting God tell her what was good and what was evil.  In her life she chose to do what was good, and here is her testimony.

2.    She was a faithful wife to her husband, Selwyn Schmitt    I Peter 3:1-6

Today marriages are in trouble,  we have husbands who don’t know how to be husbands,  wives who are leaving their husbands.  Again the world is having trouble fixing this.  There is no fix if you are going to decide for yourself what is good and evil.  When Adam ate of the forbidden fruit which was called the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, the first thing he did was run away from God.

Men and woman are looking to Ellen “Degenerate” for advice instead of the Bible. They are more willing to listen Oprah “Whinfrey” more than Jesus Christ.  They are looking to politicians for solutions; they are looking to our educators.  But the answer is right in the Word of God..

We have rejected the One who made man (and think we can come up with a better design), and everything is going haywire.

The more we decide for ourselves what is right and wrong in a marriage the worse our marriages will be.  The worse our homes will be.

Marion Schmitt was the faithful wife of one husband..

3.    A Faithful Mother of two children who are  also members  in good standing  at  the Elkdale Baptist Church  I Tim 2:15

The next good work that follows Marion Schmitt are her children.  They say you cannot take it with you..   That is not true: you can take your children to heaven with you.  Evie asked us to sing a song that Ron Hamilton wrote for his father’s funeral entitled, “I Saw Jesus in You.”

You can fool a lot of people about a lot of things,  but you can’t fool your children.  They really know how you live!  They know what you’re all about!

The reason many people are not seeing their children saved and living for God is because they are not saved and living for God.  You can put on a good show on Sunday, but how do you live on Monday?

Marion Schmitt wanted her children to be in church, and at the time, this church was closed.  Marion rallied her husband and whoever else she could find and looked to reopen it.  (I think there a lot of people who are more interested in their kids being successful in school and college and all kinds of other things.)

Mark 8:36 For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?

We have people reading all kinds of books on how to train their children–except The Book, and they are not getting the results they should. Then instead of asking themselves why,  they are just deciding for themselves what is good and evil and receiving the same old results: death.

WHY DON’T WE LOOK AS SEE WHAT KIND OF SPIRITUAL TRAINING THESE PEOPLE ARE GIVING TO THEIR CHILDREN WHO ARE THE ONES COMMITTING THESE ATROCITIES?  INSTEAD WE BLAME GUNS.  MORE PEOPLE ARE KILLED BY DRUNK DRIVERS THAN GUNS–LETS DO AWAY WITH AUTOMOBILES.  THE PROBLEM IS OUR LIVES ARE OUT OF CONTROL, AND THAT IS BECAUSE WE WILL NOT ALLOW GOD TO CONTROL OUR LIVES.

If we are just a biological product of chance (and if when we die, we just die and there is nothing else), why not go out in a moment of glory and do some bizarre thing?  Our actions are a direct result of our belief system. And our belief system is taught by our parents and schools.  Young people have no respect for either one!

You do not see people like Marion Schmitt’s children acting this way…

4.    She was a faithful teacher of Children at the Elkdale Baptist Church.  A great example and mentor of many of the kids in Sunday School, Christian School, and Home School tutor.    I Tim 2:15

Marion not only raised her own children, but she sacrificed to help other people’s children.  I believe she loved our children like her own.

What our country needs is more women like Marion Schmitt in our schools and churches as mentor of young girls.

I Timothy 2:15 says that God reserved a special place for a godly woman in the area of child training..   …. she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

5.    She was a faithful witness and soul winner in the church.  Romans 28:19-20  Rev. 14:13

There are people in heaven today because Marion was a faithful witness to others in our church and in the community.  Jesus said to His disciples to go into all the world and preach the gospel … to be a witness for Me,  tell others the great things God has done for you.  This she did.

6.    A faithful Church Treasurer and Church Clerk    Acts 16:13-15

Marion faithfully took care of the finances of the church; she paid the bills and kept the books.

A few years back she came to me and told me that she thought it was time for her to give the financial job to someone else in church.  I told her I would pray about it and did,  and never felt God leading me to give the job to anyone else.

My philosophy is if it is not broke, don’t fix it.

I finally accepted that we needed to get someone else when she was in the hospital a few months back.  Up until then she did the job faithfully.

7.    She was faithful to the task of cleaning the church for over 50 years  Luke 16:10

I noticed the last year she moved very slowly, but she kept cleaning the church anyway.

8.    A good steward and generous in her giving and tithing to the church  I Tim. 6:17-19

I know she was faithful. She didn’t have much, but she gave what she had–and when Selwyn was alive, they gave much of the property the church sits on to the church.
Today this church would not be what it is except for their help and generosity and sacrifices.

She was frugal and conservative–never splurged on things for herself.  In fact, I don’t know how many times I offered to take her out to eat, and she would say no.  She was one of those old timers who loved being a keeper of her home.

She was the complete opposite of the wicked woman mentioned in Proverbs 7:11 which says,  “She [is] loud and stubborn; her feet abide not in her house.”

Marion was quiet and loved to abide in her house, take care of her house, and property.  A keeper of her garden..

9.    Faithful in attending all the services of the church  Heb 10;24-25

Marion was always here–every service–not just on Sundays, but on Wednesdays,  and for special services.

When we had our Christian School, she was here every day.

The Bible said that the early Christians assembled together daily, and Marion would be that type of Christian.

Acts 5:42  And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.

10.    A woman filled with good works and a good example to the younger women of the church  Titus 2:3-4

My own daughters can look to Marion Schmitt as an example of a godly woman.
Now that they are married and raising children, they remember seeing in Marion a good example of a hard-working mom.

In fact, one of the things that Marion said she was hoping for in this life was to live long enough to see all our children have children.

11.   THESE ARE THE WORKS THAT FOLLOW HER AS SHE ENTERS THE PRESENCE OF THE LORD….

These are the things that will last.  All the works that Marion Schmitt did that were not in accordance with the Word of God lie in that coffin.  But the things I mentioned she has taken with her into the presence of God.

I Corinthians 3:13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.
I Corinthians 3:14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
I Corinthians 3:15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

II Corinthians 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things [done] in [his] body, according to that he hath done, whether [it be] good or bad.
II Corinthians 5:11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.

And all this started–all these good works started the day she asked Jesus into her heart!

Now there is one last work Marion Schmitt can do: If her life will affect your life for the better, this is the final good work she can perform!

But it must start with asking Jesus into your own heart and then obeying from the heart what He teaches us is good and evil.

Will you give your heart to Christ–like Marion Schmitt did many years ago? Then your works can follow you into heaven some day!

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