“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” (Philippians 4:13).
“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:” (II Timothy 4:7).
Dr. Lee Roberson said to me one time about my pastor and friend Dr. Jack Hyles, “Jack’s a survivor”. What a great statement to be made of any person let alone a man of God. I believe Dr. Roberson was a “survivor”. That which stops many men did not stop these men. It appears that is the difference in those who succeed and those who fail in life.
What will it take to stop you? Will it take a little homesickness that makes you desire to be a little child again? Will it take a disease in your body that will conquer you with pain and prevent you from being a survivor? Whoever said disease was supposed to stop any one?
How tough you are and determined you are to go on is based on what it will take to stop you! What will it take? Will it be a lack of character that causes you to financially fail? You and I are as tough as whatever it takes to stop us! Will it be a disloyalty and a critical tongue that will cause you to win the Benedict Arnold of the year award? Will it be a lack of self-discipline, which keeps you from staying and using the gifts God has given you? Will it be your disobedience to the Great Commission that causes you to fail?
Will it be the lack of discernment an inability to spot liberals like John MacArthur Jr. or C. S. Lewis or Rick Warren? Will it be the desire for popularity that will cause you to interact with the wrong religious crowd? Will it be blind followship of a man and disloyalty to the Word of God? Will it be some wacky doctrine like hyper-Calvinism or hyper-dispensationalism or the teaching of a non preserved inspiration of the King James Bible to the English speaking peoples?
What will it take to stop you? Will it be pressure to trim your sermons and teaching for the affluent or the so-called educated? Will you sell your pulpit for less than a bowl of chili? Will it be a church split that will cause you to run from a modern day Diotrephes, Korah, or Jezebel? Will it be the temptation to compromise with family members?
Tell me what is it that will stop you and I will tell you how tough you are! Will it take friends of a lifetime turning on you so you will turn on the Friend that sticketh closer than a brother?
What will it take to stop you? Will it be a fallen Christian who shakes your faith in God’s servants as you look at the few and not the many? Will it be a son or a daughter that broke your heart and caused you to give up and join them in being a fallen parent? Will it be when some denomination, that you should not have been in, blackballs you? Will it be the deacons who threaten to fire you? Will it be the press and TV stations that attack you and your church? Will it be lawsuits?
When an Evangelist and his wife set out to destroy you by spreading filthy lies and innuendoes about you will that be the thing that stops you? Will it be the Epstein Barr virus disease? Will it be a heart disease, cancer, fatigue, mono, or hepatitis? Will it be living below the poverty line in order to serve God? Will it be some discontented rule breaking classmate from whom you should separate yourself from long before now? Someone ought to give you the Doctor pantywaist degree!
Show me what it will take to stop you and you will see how tough you really are? Will it be discouragement, depression, discontentment, or disillusionment that will drive you and determine your defeat and demise? Will it be you not getting your way and not being able to adapt to adverse situations? Will it be compromise that will cause you to win the pussy footer of the year award? Will it be being hen pecked that will cause you to fail in life?
What will it take to stop you? Will it be a lack of courage and intestinal fortitude to take tough times? Will it be listening to some bum who wants to steal your purity? Will it be a female who tempts you to sell you man-hood to please a gland? Will it be being a thief at work and stealing your paycheck without working for it? Will it be ditching church? Will it be enjoying the wrong kind of music? Will it be some para church ministry that makes you think you might be able to serve God without having to fight the battles of a local church?
Will you be like Judas who was after money? Will you be like John Mark who goes back home and quits before earning his degree? Will you be like a Jacob who has no character? Will you be like Rehoboam who seeks advice from the young instead of the seasoned veterans? Will you be like Solomon who could not resist a pretty face?
Will you be like a Balaam who sells out for a little honor? Will you be like Korah who without basis criticizes leadership? Will you be like a Jezebel who was a self-willed woman? Will you be like Ahab who lets her be that way? Will you be like Jonah who doesn’t want to be a preacher? Will you be like Diotrephes who wants preeminence? Will you be like Demas who went to the world? Will you be like Samson?
The state of Texas could not stop Evangelist Lester Roloff! The Tarrant County Baptist Association of Texas could not stop Dr. John R. Rice! The London Baptist Association could not stop C. H. Spurgeon! Evangelist R. L. Sumner could not stop Dr. Jack Hyles!
Is there a bill you cannot pay? Is it an enemy who is after you? Is it an illness? Is it discouragement? Is it disappointment? Show me what it takes to stop you and I will tell you how tough you are.
Slander and bad health could not stop David Livingston! TB could not stop David Brainerd. Prison could not stop John Bunyan! Blindness could not stop Fanny Crosby. The Roman Empire and the prison could not stop the Apostle Paul! The Babylonian Empire could not stop Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. King Cyrus and the Media Persia Empire could not stop Daniel.
What will it take to stop you? An 800 ministerial association could not stop Elijah! A giant named Goliath could not stop little David! Hamilton County Baptist Association could not stop Dr. Lee Roberson! The Dallas County Association could not stop Dr. Jack Hyles and Dr. Joe Boyd!
Exile could not stop the Apostle John! Burning at the stake could not stop the influence of John Huss! Why do you stop? What is it that is going to cause you to stop while others go on?
The Red Sea and Pharaoh could not stop Moses, a flood could not stop Noah, Pharaoh’s threats could not stop Jochabed, abandonment and imprisonment could not stop Joseph, an invalid wife could not stop C. H. Spurgeon, and constant threats on his life could not stop Billy Sunday!
Cancer could not stop Marlene Evans, the wife of Dr. Wendell Evans! An iron lung could not stop Evangelist Monty Watts! The Congregationalists could not stop D. L. Moody! Prison could not stop the Apostle Peter!
The question before us is what will it take to stop you? The death of daughter did not stop Kevin and Paula Connor! The death of baby girl did not stop our son Scott and his dear wife Jenny! The birth of a handicapped son did not stop our other son Bob and his dear wife Kelly.
The loss of wife and children and burying them in Burmese soil could not stop Adoniram Judson. The death of his wife could not stop Ezekiel! The kingdom could not stop Esther!
Hey, what will it take to stop you? Will it be a nagging wife, a sluggard husband, a pretty figure, a hard time, a difficult job, hurt feelings, heat, bad climate, not getting your way, a headache, sore throat, little sleep, criticism, or homesickness?
Show me what it will take to stop you and I will tell you how tough you really are. What will they say fifty years from today about you when your name is mentioned?